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MAAT Tarot Study Group-The Lovers


MAAT Tarot cards of the week

Happy Beltaine!!!

May Day/Beltaine
Cross Quarter Day- May 1st




The Lovers

May Day is another "betwixt and between" time sacred to the Celts; Like Samhain is the doorway to winter, Beltaine is the doorway back to summer. This day is one of no rules or taboos; anything goes including sexual encounters. A Queen of May is chosen from among the young maidens. She represents the Goddess, who is now fertile and ready to choose her consort. Beltaine's fire burns the "bones of Bel" and the shadow of winter/death is banished until Judgment Day/Halloween. The Annual King is chosen. In ancient times Celtic maidens blessed the fields with dew soaked ox tails ensuring a good crop. The Goddess's sacred wells were also blessed at this time, water being the source of life and health to any community. The blessing of wells symbolic representations of the clear liquids of the fertile vagina complimented by later symbols of the phallic symbolism of maypoles.

Beltaine is the celebration of the joining of god and goddess in the Sacred Marriage, the joining of the high priestess to high priest in sacred sexual union. Transforming the virginal high priestess into the newly pregnant and faithful Empress. This union transforms the fool into her High Priest/consort…the Holy Father to her Holy Mother role. She is the fertile flowering earth that will bear fruit and he is the return of the Green [man], which will nourish her fruit.

Other Names: May Day; Bealtane; Baal; Bel, Bael, Balder, Pan, Lord of the Hunt, The Maid Marion and her RobinHood, Isis and Osiris

Symbols: May Pole; Phallus, pools, ponds, wells, dew, bonfires

Attributes: Lust/choice

In a Reading: This card signifies intimate partners. This pair bond is stronger than most and would be considered as 'soul mates'. The Lovers card represents a significantly stronger pair bond than even the marriage card (2 of Cups).
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Simple yet deep Lovers card. The union of opposites is very clear here. I love how the Lovers are of different color because this puts the emphasis on opposites. Hip to hip they are joined. The ribbons of Beltaine show it is spring along with the lush green background.

In the Maat deck, I see the Lovers card being about joining of opposites and the beginning of new life. Commitment (joined at the hip), celebration (Beltaine), life (green background).
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mimers
Simple yet deep Lovers card. The union of opposites is very clear here. I love how the Lovers are of different color because this puts the emphasis on opposites. Hip to hip they are joined. The ribbons of Beltaine show it is spring along with the lush green background.

In the Maat deck, I see the Lovers card being about joining of opposites and the beginning of new life. Commitment (joined at the hip), celebration (Beltaine), life (green background).
I like what Mimers said here and I really like this card Julie. It's simple but powerful.

Awakening, healing, synchronism, sexuality, equilibrium, magical attraction, magnification are some of the words I sense with this card. During the full Moon in Scorpio and Sun in Taurus, there is another celebration known as the Wesak Festival (Wesak Festival is performed in the Wesak Valley in the Himalayan mountains…….the whole world can tune into this incredible energy) It is a time when the Buddha is said to return to the earth, uniting the world together, giving all of us the ability to find our stillness within—offering us clarity to help achieve our goals. It unites to the vision of world peace, raising our frequencies to come into oneness with all humanity. Through the chanting that takes place a rhythmic weaving surrounds the people and is said to grow stronger as the moon moves up to the sky. All become ONE.

This card is also very empowering. I see it asintegrating our sexuality and spirituality. Osiris was dis-membered but Isis searched and re-membered, re-collected and re-united. She found a greater union, driven by Eros, by Love. To do this we have to give up old ways of being, old attachments old patterns so the new can emerge.

It invites us to discover that sacred point between two worlds which takes us to the world of the Shaman, priest, or priestess, who live in two worlds at once.

Found this quote as well which seems fitting.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Arnold Mindell
Once the abandoned self in the body has been touched by listening and caring for it, the body awakens and acts like a partner to consciousness. The self in the body, the dreambody, becomes personal power, unfolds its wings, stretches beyond its imprisonment in doings and acts out its dreams, its myths. One sees this happen in dreambody work, as individuals follow their bodies, let them flow freely and discover the myth behind personal life, the experience of freedom.
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Interesting card.

Isasis and her slave - Green.

We see in it only the bodies of two lovers, but we do not see their faces, and it is difficult to identify which of them a woman, and who is the man. Their faces are hidden with edges of the card as a mask. Ribbons, which entwine the body, themselves intertwined in a way similar to the glasses or fancy mask.
Mask, as a symbol of transformation, when visible transformed into the desired when the face is overcome by its own nature. Wearing a mask, the man is not an image of man and animal sign as well as an animal in a different guise, the hunter tries to find common ground with the animals, be like the animal physically through the "masquerade", to merge his body with the body of the beast.
These two lovers so intertwined with each other in amorous ecstasy, so that they seemed has no memory of themselves, do not know who they are and what surrounds them in this world.
Only mask knows which of them is actually under the cover, and what these two lovers hide.

Which of them a woman, and who is man?

This card is an image of the book I reminded - Gustav Meynrik "Angel of the West Window" and its main characters - Isasis, Green, and Lopotin (which bears the name Mascee - nothing, mask).
Due to this story, Green made Taygerm ceremony of a slow browning 50 cats, refers to the mysteries of initiation into the cult of the Goddess of the Moon Scottish Isais Black, in the Walpurgis Night, that is, on the night of May 1, in order to merge with her essence.

Therefore we can assume that the Black body belongs to a Woman, the main character - Isasis - Isis, or Kali, the Dark Moon Goddess, the goddess of the black moon. White body belongs to Men - Black Prince Isasis, her first servant, and an evil demon.
Mask - is a symbol of the Black Goddess, is a symbol of the night, giving shelter to vice. Goddess and her Prince merge in ecstatic love of the night. Their body - white and black, the sun and moon, light and life arising from death and Darkness. On the other hand, the moon - it is a black center of the Night, this vampire suck this life and light. Born of the moon and the moon subservient is masculine vampire aggression, preventing nights eating itself.
Black Goddess of the Moon -she is for those, who are themselves going into her arms, as her prince, she leaves a ghostly semblance of life, and depriving the individual, and will, and above all individuality, because the man is dissolved and merged her into a single unit.
Lunar gravity, the variability of the lunar phases kept man in a state of tension and unrest (we can see 2 ribbons behind his back = 2 of wands).

The human is a combination of two principles - the male and female, material and spiritual, good and evil, as black and white, two faces of color. And between them a struggle constantly is, it is not only a struggle and the choice between the masculine and feminine, but also the spiritual and the material world (a man embraces a woman's waist, we see a hand with 5 fingers = 5 wands). But like seeketh like, and when a man wants a woman, it means that it is feminine source rushes to his kindred element (we can see, left man's nipple peeps of the female as the left eye is looking to the world - left eye - a symbol of the Moon). That is, more intense passion of men to women in particular and to the material world in general, the weaker is his masculinity. In order to get rid of the female vampire, the man must maintain his masculine identity, which a woman tries constantly destroy.

So that the man should make a choice, to come to decision, or to merge into a stranglehold with the Goddess of the Black Moon, to completely subjugate his will to become her obedient servant, lifeless zombie, either stay firm ground of the land with his both feet in order to retain his male identity.
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Awesome post!
Thanks for contributing!
Julie
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I posted this in the 78 Weeks Study thread; I'm posting it here to add to discussion of this particular deck/card.

I'm somebody who reads the journey through the Major Arcana as relating to the Fool's Journey - I see a clear path to self-individuation in their stories. As a result, when I thought about the Lovers, I also thought about the card it followed: Hierophant, the card of tradition and taught/learned behaviour.

The Lovers, to me, represents the moment when you realise you don't have to do things the way you've been taught. It's when you realise that people other than your parents and your elders will help define your self-identity... it's that moment of realise that another person can be important to you. There's choice involved, but it's a choice as to who you will be as a mature and individuated adult: will you continue to honor the path shown to you by your parents and teachers? Or will you strike your own way? Or is there, in fact, a third way of balance and compromise? It's also, therefore, a card of learning to integrate opposition: as you get older, existing ideas are threatened by new experiences, some of them in direct conflict to the things your parents taught you. What, then, do you do?

As ever, this card gave me a story. Here it is:

The Lovers

He left his father's house. It was early - the Sun had just risen - but he needed to escape. Too stifling, it was, this Beltane morning. It was the same, every year and, when he was younger, he'd enjoyed the traditions, the timeless rituals. Breakfast, then to the village with the other men, finding wood for the Mayfires. There'd been the camaraderie, the ribald joking: it had been fine to be part of a tradition that stretched back through countless generations. He'd looked forward to it.

This year he felt differently. The traditions looked like something somebody else should be doing. He was on edge, needed space, needed to breathe...hence, this walk. He would go to the stream and drink its cool waters; on the way back he could collect wood for the fires. He'd still play his part.

He just wanted to do it his own way, that was all. He might get into trouble, but it'd be worth it: it was worth making a choice on his own terms. After all, wasn't he now a grown man?

*****

He saw her before she saw him; rising from the stream, the water cascaded over her shoulders and down her back, seemingly painting her with pearls. She gleamed with the beauty of this blushing, morning Sun. Still new, it was, this season: its warmth was shy.

So was he; despite her beauty, her freshness, he hesitated. Slender limbs, arched over her head, made her appear fragile as a leaping fawn. Next to her, he felt clumsy, awkward; he cursed his hands, calloused and tanned from a spring spent in the fields. He felt it, too, at home: always knocking into things, tripping over chairs and stools and bowls of eggs... it would be soon time for a home of his own, his mother scolded. And he saw the impatience in her eyes and felt small and confused.

If his parents felt this way, how could anybody else feel any different? She was graceful and beautiful and pale and gentle; she was everything he wasn't. She was a goddess, surely: had any woman ever been this beautiful? How could he ever hope to speak to such a creature?

And then she turned and she saw him.

He opened his mouth to apologize and, without thinking, stepped forward.

She didn't move; she just looked at him.

He looked back.

He stepped forward again.

Reflected in her eyes was not an annoying overgrown boy who spilled the milk, or ate all the bread. Reflected in her eyes was a stranger; reflected in her eyes was a man, shoulders broadened from his work in the fields, hands capable of chopping wood, of teasing growth from a field of freshly sown seeds, of stroking life into a newborn lamb.

Reflected in her eyes... this creature, this young god... it was him.

He stepped forward again and again, until he reached the stream. He'd made his choice.

Above them, the Hawthorne tree swayed in the Beltane breeze. Blossoms rained down around them.

It was a beginning.
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This is a series of 4 cards: The Princess of Cups, the 4 of Cups, the Empress and the Lovers, all worked within the story of love learned/lost and rediscovered.

Cards/Numbers: Princess of Cups/42, 4 of Cups/43, Empress/44, Lovers/45

Card Images: see attached

First Impressions: The princess, so innocent and sweet, is such a contrast to the Morgan La Fay of the 4 of Cups- yet, she is the entryway to that scene and emotion. The Empress arrives, bringing courage and birth to the possibility that is announced by the Lovers. I LOVE this Empress card! It is not your pregnant earth-mama, but a powerful, sometimes dark woman who is strong and wise. A woman first and foremost!

Masculine/Feminine/Neutral: the princess and Empress are feminine, the 4 and lovers neutral

Senses: As you walk this path the warm air has grown stale and musty. Suddenly, you smell the soft scent of roses, and your step quickens- here you meet the Empress. As your journey continues, you arrive at the crossroads. The path you were traveling seems dead and withered, but a breeze full of promise floats in from the alternate path- and you hear the voice on the wind asking "Which one will you choose?".

Symbols: cups, princess, knight, dove, starts and ribbons

Story (intuitive): And the journey of love learned continues. The 3 of Cups has long passed, the celebration of the births faded. As life continues, monotony seeps in. And, the princess emerges. Dreams of the knight in shining armor return, of being swept away in a grand love affair, wistful dreams of passion renewed. And, the days continue, and the knight never comes. And you transform to Morgana- standing over the sleeping knight that has never awoken, and realizing that what you have is not enough. Disappointment is keen, but brings on with it an understanding that things cannot go on as they are. And the truth sinks in, so mighty and terrifying- I do not love this man. And you look at your children, and wonder- how, how can I leave? I cannot hurt them by changing their lives! And you look at yourself in the mirror- and realize that your soul is dying day by day. So you decide to feed it, and make yourself stronger. And you strike out, to gain knowledge. And, in that course, you meet her, the Empress. And you remember who you are, woman- strong and wise. And that feeds you as nothing has before. And so you become powerful in your own right, but this weakens the status even more- for only love can feed change, anything else fears it and tries to kill it. And since there is no true love, then you watch sadly as things deconstruct around you. And you find yourself at a crossroads. The road ahead is level and paved, but there is no life, no freedom. It is easy, but will kill your soul. You look to your left, and the way is rocky- but trees and roses grow among the landscape, and a wisp of a breeze floats an un-named promise, a friendship that has emerged into something so much more. Which will you choose? I sigh, my heart heavy. Each one will provide it's own measure of pain, but the Empress has taught me well, and so has Morgana. I can no longer sit and wait for a knight to carry me away- it is time to create my own happiness and love and it is no longer here. A part of me cries, for I know there will be loss, but the rest of my soul sings- as it comes slowly back to life. And I stand, and turn to the left, and begin on my new path.

Astrologic: Princess of Cups: week of the full moon in Libra, planetary ruler: Mars. 4 of Cups: week of the last quarter moon in Capricorn, planetary ruler: Mars. Empress: full moon cycle of Scorpio. Lovers: Beltaine.

Elements: water for the princess of cups, 4 of cups and Empress, air for the Lovers

Keywords: Princess of Cups: daydreaming, fantasizing. 4 of Cups: obsession, depression, disappointment. Empress: passion, lust, nurturing, maturation. Lovers: choice, lust

Meanings:
Princess of Cups: traditionally a young girl with blond hair, element of water, someone who is married/about to be married/or emotionally tied
4 of Cups: to thine own self be true! Stick to your own plans, regardless of others.
Empress: strongly sensual woman who is a passionate partner and loving mother
Lovers: intimate partners, an even stronger bond than seen in the 2 of cups

Quote: "I choose the path of love, love of myself and love for another."
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Marvelous! These are becoming such a nice collection.
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I like this card for it sensuality. It not about doing the sexual act. It is more the sensuous pleasure of the skin against skin, the warmth, the touch and what we can perceive by the touch. The closeness of the bodies is not forced.
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