After the Snares of the Devil and the ravages of the falling Tower, we look to the Star for some respite. The card depicts a nude woman with two pitchers, pouring one into a pond and pouring one onto the ground, where it runs into five streams. In the sky above her is one large, eight-pointed star surrounded by seven other smaller stars. As with all of the tarot cards, much is said in symbolism.
The Star is about hope for the future. It is said that the eight, eight-pointed stars, and the sum of 8 reached by adding the numbers of the 17th card together, are indicative not only of the Strength card, but also the Eightfold Path of Righteousness the Buddha guides us toward to reach enlightenment. We open to wisdom by having Right View and Right Intention. We develop ethical conduct by cultivating Right Speech, Right Action, and Right Livelihood. And we develop mentally by practicing Right Effort, Right Mindfulness, and Right Concentration. The seven smaller stars also represent the seven chakras, and call us to align them before we continue on our journey.
As we rebuild from the calamities that have befallen us along our path, if we have the strength to nurture our entire being, we can prepare ourselves for the future that awaits us. This is why the woman pours water into the pool to replenish the spiritual nature, and onto the ground to replenish the physical nature, which we experience through our five senses. In the background, an ibis, a bird representing thought and the Egyptian god Thoth, sits in the tree of the mind as a subtle reminder of how this is all connected.
This time of year, as my tradition celebrates the birth of Jesus, we recall the star which led the magi and shepherds to the stable where he was born. Whether we seek for salvation from something external or realize it as something which emanates from our higher Self, the Star draws us on toward our goal. Since time began being noticed, humans have looked to the stars for guidance and direction, mapping out their rhythms and deriving our stories from them. Although they each seem so tiny as they twinkle in the sky, they are each as big or bigger than our own sun and serve as the center of their very own galaxy, where it’s possible that beings on planets similar to ours are looking at our sun in the same manner that we look at theirs.
Each star brings with it a myriad of stories and possibilities. By following this Star, we open our story to the realm of all possibilities. May your Star lead you on the path you seek to the future you desire.