On July 22nd, the Sun enters Leo, the Lion, the sign associated with the Strength card of the Tarot. In Cancer, the Sun's focus was inward, now in Leo it's all about self-expression and creativity. Since the Sun is Leo's native ruler, the Sun is dignified in this sign. You can expect the motivation of the next four weeks to be about personal forms of creativity and style. Now is the time to take a risk, using Leo's courage to do so. While the Sun is in Leo, be generous of your time and self. Let the Leo Sun's warmth help ease your worries. There is always light at the end of the tunnel. It is our job to continue seeking for it and walking towards it. Be confident as you walk your path. Be mindful of keeping the goal in sight and knowing when it's time to tweak the plans and make changes in order complete the tasks at hand. Flexibility is important, as Leo is a fixed sign and the ego can get in the way of progress and growth. However, we must also be careful not to indulge in the darker aspects, such as pride, arrogance, stubbornness and vanity.
The Rider-Waite Tarot’s Strength card, numbered eight, shows a woman petting a lion on its forehead and lower jaw under a golden sky. They stand on a verdant landscape and the king of the beasts is tamed under the gentle petting. The woman gazes down with a peaceful smile on her face. Her robe is adorned with a floral garnish and she is crowned with a flowery laurel on her head, above which floats the infinity symbol similar to the one floating above the head of The Magician. This is the symbol of possibilities and self-mastery. The woman depicted here is in the act of soothing the savage beast. She is in control of both her predatory instincts and the chaos of living in the wild. Similar in calm appearance to the Temperance Tarot card, her mastery of the animal indicates that she has conquered more than just herself and exerts a control over aspects in the world around her.
There are many stories that come to mind with this card, such as Daniel in the lion's den and tales of saintly maids who get brutish barbarians to kneel down in prayer. What we see in all these stories is the taming of the beast by way of inner strength and gentleness. The Strength card is one of the most sophisticated cards in the Tarot deck, representing a higher level of consciousness that takes responsibility in order to master yourself and your world. Strength is about combining two strengths to overcome weakness. The Maiden is weak of form, but her mastery of herself is powerful. The Lion is strong of form, but weak when it comes to mastering himself. The Maiden's commands overcome the Lion's weakness, and his form overcomes the Maiden's weakness. This is why the Maiden doesn't try to harness the lion to a chariot, nor does she run from it or try to kill it. She meets its eyes, touches it and embraces it. This is a card about understanding our wild natures, accepting them and getting those passions to work in a positive direction. Putting these two strengths together creates perseverance, personal honor and courage.
Tarot Meditation while the Sun is in Leo
The period when the Sun transits through Leo is an excellent time to meditate on the Strength Card. How we are using our inner strength. Are we being true to our inner selves? Do we have the courage of our convictions? Are we using brute force when gentle persuasion would do? What are your internal battles and how can you reach a balance? What area in your life requires you to have the most strength and what different kinds of strength can you apply here?
To prepare for mediation, sit or lie in a comfortable place and allow your body to be free of tension and distractions. Pay attention to your breathing. Feel your breath go in and out as you inhale and exhale. If distracting thoughts enter your mind, simply observe them and allow them to float by as you gently return your attention to your breathing. When you have established a steady, comfortable rhythm of breathing rhythmically in and out, turn your focus to the tarot card. Observe the card and contemplate its images. Let your mind be open to the messages you receive from it. When you have completed your meditation, you may wish to record your observations in a notebook for review later on.