In each age, men of genius undertake the ascent. From below, the world follows them with their eyes. These men go up the mountain, enter the clouds, disappear, reappear, People watch them, mark them. They walk by the side of the precipice. They sparingly, pursue their road. See them aloft, see them in the distance; they are but black specks. On they go. The road is uneven, its difficulties constant. At each step a wall, at each step a trap. As they rise, the cold increases. They must make their ladder, cut the ice and walk on it, hewing the steps in haste. A storm is raging. Nevertheless they go forward in their madness. The air becomes difficult to breathe, The abyss yawns below them. Some fall. Others stop and retrace their steps; there is a sad weariness. The bold ones continue. They are eyed by the eagles; the lightening plays about them: the hurricane is furious. No matter, they persevere. – Victor Hugo
To me Tarot is not the be all, end all answer to life’s problems. It is more like guidance too to me. When we read the cards, we are not trying to get the exact answer to fix the problem. They simply give us a different perspective, and it offers another way to think about the situation. One can always choose to ignore a reading and do their own thing. After all we are kinda professionals at doing this already. We ask friends and relatives for advice and choose to skip the advice all the time. Sometimes, listening to a different perspective can help us see that Plan A was a better plan than you thought it was.
As a child growing up on the river at my Grandparent’s house, I used to collect hermit crabs. I would find them tip, tapping across the shells and sand at the edge of the water. I remember going outside one day and finding my hermit crabs dead. I was upset. My Grandmother explained to me that collecting them to watch was always fun. But, she explained that after I was finished observing them, I should let them go free. I have thought of this many times in my life.
Hermit crabs are cool because they carry everything they need to survive with them everywhere they go. They are also interesting because whenever they outgrow their home they simply abandon the home they had and find a larger one to move into. To me this meant that crabs were super smart. They understood something that many people did not understand. They understood that change is absolutely necessary.
When the Hermit card comes up it is an indication that change is about to happen. The Hermit suggest that we take some “me” time and go inside ourselves to find the answers we need to the difficulties we are experiencing.
Often getting too many opinions can wash over us in waves creating too much confusion. Sometimes we need to withdraw from the world, turn off the television and radio, and relearn how to connect with the signs and synchronicities our guides and/or our higher self is trying to send us. We get so busy in our lives that we forget what it is like to hear our inner voice. It becomes a distant whisper that we somehow hear, but we just can’t quite make out what it is saying.
Many people feel that it is dangerous for people who get depressed and pull away from the world. People frequently tell a depressed person to get out of the house, go meet people, find people that inspire you. I agree with this if we have let the depression become complicated.
As an Empath, I find it very necessary to pull away from the tidal wave of the world and take a break from the chaos and simply hang out with the rippling end breaks of the waves.
Two years ago, I decided to embrace my spiritual gifts and stop allowing others to tell me they are bad or evil. To do this successfully, I committed to the task by turning off the world and going inside myself. I stopped watching television and listening to the radio. It was not as easy as I thought it was going to be.
I find that I most often am up at night when everyone else is sleeping. I never could figure out why I sleep so little. Now I see that I do this not to avoid people as many have suggested when they lectured me about staying to myself too much. I find that I go through cycles of sleeping in the day when everyone else is busy bustling through life, and that is is a coping mechanism I started at a very young age. I simply think better when everyone else is asleep.
Overtime, I discovered that all the silence made me hear more of the negative self talk and repetitive worries that haunted me. I began to focus on meditation and concentrated on changing my way of thinking from the ground up.
Like the hermit crabs I caught as a child, I safely tucked myself inside my shell seeking to find the inner child that I had long ago abandoned. As I went deeper and deeper inside my shell seeking solice from the chaos that was all around me, I noticed that I kept bumping into aspects of myself that I had lost track of. I discovered that I did not like seeing how often I beat myself up over little things. I found that I rarely laughed. I began to find ways to laugh.
When I was a little girl, everyone called me smiley. I also noticed that I rarely smiled. I began to think about times in my life in which I was happy. Oddly enough, I could not think of many. Whenever I would try to think about happier times, I seemed to always find the best memories of laughing were when I was a child. I began to see that I needed to laugh more.
I met a friend on Twitter that asked me if I liked to laugh. I thought for a moment what to say… I replied that I rarely really laugh. She immediately replied that it was her new personal mission to make me laugh. And, to my surprise, she did it too. She did not just make me laugh, she had me belly laughing and I had not done that since my children were very young. I have taken the time to tell her how much she helped change how I view the world.
I really began to enjoy silly things like burying my feet in the sand and sculpting mermaids with a mixture of water and sand. I began to go on nature walks by myself. I found that I was actually pretty good company. I even liked my off kilter sense of humor. I even dyed my hair pink. At first, I worried about what others would think if I did this. I finally realized that I wanted to laugh so I did it anyway. It turns out that other people seemed to get what I was doing and they cheered me on. This was encouraging. I began to understand why there were so many people my age and older frequently walking the beach. Many of us were empty nesters relearning how to be alone with our thoughts and ourselves.
I remembered that I really was an introvert that learned to act like an extrovert to not become completely invisible.
When I was alone, I would remember the sad times and the times I would get angry and show my ass. It was embarrassing to remember some of it. I found that part of this journey of rediscovering myself included acknowledging those parts of myself and finding out why I had reacted the way I did. I was hoping to think of ways to keep from making the same mistakes over and over. I really wanted to change myself inside and out. I did this for about a year and a half before I began to feel a real change happening inside.
I took this time to research and study things that I had always wanted to study. I had always been interested in esoteric concepts, but I had little time to really sit down and study it like I wanted to. I prayed to my guides and asked them to show me the way. I suddenly began to meet people that thought the way I was thinking and it seemed that articles and videos on these concepts kept finding me everywhere I went, including magazines in doctor’s offices. I began to find books on these subjects in Thrift Stores. It often felt like they jumped off of the shelf at me and the prices were super reasonable. There has never been a dull moment since I actually began the practice of soul searching.
I am still on this journey, but I am becoming less of a Hermit for now. I am beginning to slip in and out of my happy and comfy little shell. I am enjoying sharing my new knowledge with my new friends that have turned out to be some of the best people I have ever had the privilege to meet. We became comfortable with each other and have become like a little family. We get busy and trickle in out out of each other’s lives, but whenever one of us need the other, we show up, each in our own way, to support each other.
I am sure that before too long, I will, again, return to my hermit shell and embrace the quiet; after all, I am a natural introvert. I am glad I took the time and made the commitment to begin this journey, rediscovering lost aspect of myself. It has not always been an easy cycle of life to be in, but I found out that I don’t mind being quirky and I love having pink hair and reading ancient, previously hidden but not yet forgotten secrets that only a few dare to explore.
Yes, I agree with The Hermit; we should not allow ourselves to go so deeply inside ourselves that we lose track of the rest of the world completely. The Hermit, in this card, holds the beacon of enlightenment for us to focus on in his hand, offering that taking a deep dive into the minds eye and staring into the soul is not for the faint of heart, but sometimes the answer really is to step out of the chaos and reconnect with ourselves.
The Mary-El Tarot; Landscapes Of The Abyss