Inner Whispers

Guiding You To A More Magical Life

Inner Whispers

Summer Solstice Hop: Temperance

RWS-XIV

Original Rider Waite Tarot

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For this blog hop, our wrangler Alison of Tarot Thrones came up with something a bit different.  She challenged our international group of bloggers to blog about all the cards of the Major Arcana – each person picking one card.  As there are more than 22 of us on this hop, you’ll find a couple of different takes on a few of the cards, including the one I chose: Temperance.

When I first decided to seriously learn about the tarot, I took a six week beginners course at Mysteries, in the centre of London.  I appreciated much of what I learned on that course, and it formed a basis which I still use in my readings today.  However, the teacher was not a fan of the Temperance card.

He saw this card as boring, as about having to enforce moderation on yourself, and of not having any fun.  In that, I have charted my own course, as I see Temperance very differently.  For me, Temperance is about getting the right mix of ingredients, getting a healthy balance in our lives.

As such, I see it as a card of healing.  I use it in all my Tarot Magic healing spells, and I’m running a webinar on weight loss/healthy eating on the 29th of July, inspired by this.  During the webinar, everyone will design their own spell, as well as being able to download the ‘magical meditation’ based on Temperance which I created for the purpose.

TT-XIV-Temperance

©Chloe McCracken

As well as writing about our card, Alison invited us to be inspired by it in any way we liked.  As those who have read some of my other blog posts may remember, I can claim no talent whatsoever for art.  I never doodled as a child, and struggle to create anything I’m even half-way pleased with.  Hence my having to find artists to illustrate the decks I created, the Celtic Lenormand (US Games, 2014) and the Wings of Change Lenormand (self-published, 2015).

However, as I use the Temperance card so much in magic, I decided to create an image of it myself, to have a copyright free picture to use in my Tarot Magic webinars and spell pdf’s.  For this, I painted the background using water colour pencils, and then using a water wash to soften them.  Then, I drew the angel on a separate sheet and photoshopped him into the image, adding a bit of colour to him with sharpies and on the computer.

He stands as a reminder: Temperance is not just about what you don’t/can’t do, but very much about what actions you choose to take.  It is about being willing to set your own limits, and also to find the exact right balance for you.  That balance is not based on what others say, but on your own experience.  The angel tips liquid from one cup to the other, experimenting til the mix is right…

And remember, if you want to find the right balance to achieve a healthy, desirable weight, I’m here to help.

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23 Responses to “Summer Solstice Hop: Temperance”

    • Exactly, Alison! I’ve never liked renaming it Art, because I think it’s a balance of art and science. Alchemy expresses it very well, though it may be a little esoteric for your average Joe… 🙂

      Reply
  • When you see Temperance like this it is also a card about living authentically and finding out exactly who we really are. 🙂

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    • That expresses it beautifully, Ellen! And what a healing thing to do for yourself, right? 🙂

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  • That’s very interesting that your teacher presented this card (or any card) as “boring”! But I think it goes to show that even teachers are always learning, always on a journey of their very own. I love that you created your own Temperance image to use for your own classes and workings! And I think it’s lovely! 😉

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    • Thanks, Olivia! I know my art isn’t up to much, but I still enjoy creating it 🙂 And yes, as you said in a recent post, continually learning is one of the joys of tarot, as student and teacher!

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  • He probably picked that ‘boring’ bit up from Rachel Pollack, who has made her distaste for Temperance plain in several of her books. Being a Thoth fan, I look upon as the alchemical marriage, and so am in agreement with you on its meaning.

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      • It may also have been to do with him being a recovering drug and alcohol user, so Temperance felt like deprivation to him. As for Rachel Pollack, she does also have positive things to say about it. In 78 degrees she says of Temperance that it is “Not an artificial inhibition according to a moral code, but exactly the opposite; a true and proper response to situations as they arise.” 🙂

        Reply
  • I think that the mistake that people make is assuming that balance is static and therefore boring. A gyroscope is balanced as long as it is moving. Walking a tightrope is hardly dull and requires balance in motion. For me, Temperance is more about a lack of excess that is unhealthy than about not having any fun.

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    • Yes, having fun is a necessary part of life, without it there is no balance! 😀

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  • Katalin Patnaik

    Oh teachers should never comment negatively on cards in front of students… it can affect their perception of it… 🙁 Maybe Temperance should be called Balance, making it more friendly and understandable. Hmmm….

    Lovely picture!

    Reply
    • Well, everyone is entitled to their opinion, and I think most people can find their own view, given time. Still, I agree that putting such a negative spin on any card is a little sad: every card has its good and bad aspects, and only seeing one side is so in-temperate 😉

      Reply
  • Oh I like Temperance… he’s cheeky! He’s smiling because you think the water is pouring from top to bottom…. he’s managed to defy gravity and make it run uphill… After all,,, he is a fire card… he’s never going to be boring… 😀

    Reply
    • Ha ha ha, yes, Karen, it’s quite a feat he manages 😉
      Despite his elemental attribution, I see him being at home in all the elements. He’s always got one foot in the water, one on the ground, and those wings connect him to air, too! The fire is the most subtle, the passion and will that fuses all the rest…

      Reply
  • I had always thought temperance to be boring too, but good grief, you lent new light to it for me: ” that balance is not based on what others say, but on your own experience.”

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    • Glad to help you see Temperance in a new light, Jo! Temperance is such an experimenting card, and so full of possibility 🙂

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    • Oh, I like that, Arwen: the change of known energies into other things! 😀

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  • Poor old Temperance! I often come across the view that it’s a boring card but I think it’s lovely. Like you, I prefer to see it as a card of alchemy which, when translated in everyday terms, might be about mixing things up to find a balance or creating something new from a variety of elements. I love doing this in my creative work – mixing colours, balancing a composition, creating a story or mood through various objects. I sometimes wonder if a person’s dislike of this card might be associated with a tendency to have a fixed outlook on life. One of the things I often encounter in creative work is a lack of vision or lack of confidence where creative experimentation is concerned. People can become so entrenched and are often afraid of making mistakes. They find it hard to see beyond where they are but when someone shows them what a little tinkering here and there can do… it’s a light bulb moment.

    Reply
    • Not being very artistic, I hadn’t thought of the blending colours, balancing composition examples, but they’re a perfect description of Temperance! Tee hee, yay for tinkering 😀

      Reply
  • I agree, I love the Temperance card for it’s balance and healing and count it fortunate when I see it in readings.

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    • Hmm, maybe following on from Sharon’s (of DaniKa11) comment, it is when we are open to creative experimentation and seeing things in a different light that we like Temperance… 🙂

      Reply

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