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Deck of the week: Malpertuis Bridge J7
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Brief weekly thoughts about a card randomly drawn from a Malpertuis deck - either about its creation, or possible factors to consider when it appears in a reading
Lovers 26th April 2017
from the Tyldwick Tarot (2013)
I'm not really of the 'prediction' school, and never have been. I lean more strongly towards the idea that Tarot is a tool for identifying and informing choices and for provoking consideration of their potential consequences. While it could be argued that every card in the deck illustrates a choice of some kind, this always seems especially pertinent with the Lovers.
The oldest examples of the Lovers (Marseilles, Visconti) depict a youth standing between two women, traditionally accepted as a mother and a potential partner. The implied scenario is of a choice between maternal and conjugal love - of the progress from an immature and unequal relationship (childhood) to a mature and equal one (partnership and marriage). Modern versions (RWS, Thoth) have ditched the mother entirely, presenting instead a couple presided over by symbols of 'love' (an Angel, cherubs, a minister). These later versions to my mind miss the element of progressive choice which characterises the card, and in particular those choices we all at some time confront between what we already have and what we might yet have. Choices which necessarily involve giving something up in order to achieve something else - where having one's cake and eating it isn't possible.
Such choices can be difficult, especially when they're contaminated by the various ifs and buts we pile into the equation - conveniently providing ourselves with the excuses we use to avoid coming to a decision. I'd love that new job, but I really like everyone here. I'd love to move, but I'm so attached to this house. I'd love to live with someone, but I do like my own space.
I've personally found the Lovers card to be an alert to precisely this kind of decision avoidance: a signal, perhaps, to recognise the buts for what they often are - excuses for not moving, rather than reasons for staying put.
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