Struggling with compulsion, the freedom of the mind
There’s a fantastic image that represents a mind consumed with self control. The Thoth deck, 4 of cups shows lines of energy perfectly projected into cups.
The image presents a mind that is controlling itself. It’s directing things. This is telling of underlying issues that normally would have driven the mind mad with fleeting thoughts, dark rumination, and the general chaos that a freely spinning mind can inflict upon the feelings.
It’s like an awareness in the tale of the princess and the pea, but the pea is being ignored, and the person is trying to fight the end result of the deep fracture in the psyche. The issue that causes the anxiety isn’t going anywhere, so the mind fights its battle for control – creating an artificial state of peace.
How do we approach such an issue?
Imagine a piece of sand stuck in an oyster. It creates a pearl by adding layers over the grain of sand; Eventually creating a lustrous sphere.
In qabalah the layers are are accretions that reduce or hide the sphere’s influence from travelling through the paths. The layers either have to be acknowledged, shattered, phased away with work on the higher principles attributed to the sphere, or meditated upon.
Through meditation we may find the difficult and complex imagery that creates this seemingly perpetual scarring within. A memory that has been given life life through emotional responses, and possibly re-triggered through life. The core negative experiences happened to us, and caused a shaping effect – they defined who and what we are. At some point we have to let go of these forces, but that task is easier said than done.
In some ways we are looking at a process of healing by atonement. We hold onto pain and suffering like a badge of achievement, or something we can’t understand why ‘it happened to me’. As we age and develop our minds become adversaries that are able to counter our attempts to assert control within, leading to a never ending battle of wills that we are destined to lose (you are fighting with a mind that has access to all conscious and unconscious material!). Atonement allows us to counter the energy through taking action to create nuggets of self esteem building actions that can give our little minds some ammunition to counter the negative mindsets.
Atonement isn’t just paying back karma for things we may feel that we have done wrong, but also karma back towards the self. People often have a great deal of anxiety that powers them to move forwards, sometimes this anxiety can fester and cause a downward spiral of worry and depression – and the person can end up over compensating with their efforts to heal themselves, and in essence overwork themselves, tiring the mind, making more mistakes.
The drive for luxuries
The title on the Thoth card is ‘Luxury’, and give another depth to the meaning.
When we are in states of high anxiety we feel driven towards peace in strange ways. We may desire creature comforts – a quiet place to rest, chocolate, drugs, anything to distract us from the minds potential for piercing chaos.
These temporary states enable temporary solutions, but don’t really aid the removal of the accretions. They just delay the return to that chaotic centre.
When seeking, we are all desperate to find some rock beneath our feet to help us stop ‘treading water’ in our emotional mires. This rock is not easily won in the quest for self knowledge, but it is a reality through hard work.
The solution isn’t in massive grand gestures, sacrifices of all worldly goods, or other pious activity – but in a gradual and gentle pushes in the right direction. It’s best to develop smaller psychologically healthy habits that a massive unsustainable burst of glorious light.
Eventually, there’s a glint in your eye when your demons turn up for you regular torture session, and you’re ready for them. Build & protect your inner temple with that gentle spirit.