Each week in The Wisdom of Change blog series, I share the original artwork and unpack the insights and meaning behind one of the 44 cards in The Wisdom of Change oracle deck.
This week’s card is 25 The Mirror
‘The mirror’ is a concept that created a seismic shift in my ability to empower myself. It is also one of the most challenging personal change techniques I have encountered. Getting to grips with the mirror is a little like being slapped in the face without warning and then immediately being administered the most magically soothing balm!
‘As without, also within’ I learned.
It left me scratching my head at first. I was taking comfort from my ‘victim mentality’ following a series of unfortunate events that had left me feeling relatively powerless. I’d tried to make changes, but I kept being faced with dead ends. Friends and family loyally supported me by agreeing that my situation was indeed challenging and not of my making. They too were surprised and affronted by what had happened ‘to me’; they felt sympathetic towards my situation and agreed that where I’d found myself was unfair. It was comforting to a point to have a listening ear over a cup of coffee, but it wasn’t really helping me to move forward.
When we believe that something is happening outside of ourselves and are caught up in the belief that we have had something ‘done to us’ we are powerless to carry out the inner work that will lead to the change we desire. Everything that happens around us that we think we ‘don’t like’ is in fact an invitation to look within.
Let’s look at a real time example to see if I can unpick this further with you. As I write, the world is gripped by Covid-19. ‘The world’s gone mad’ I keep hearing myself say in an unguarded moment. It’s almost a throw away comment I use when I’m filling a space in a conversational lull…or is it? On one level it might seem true; who would challenge me on this? A few minutes watching the news would be proof of my statement one might argue. Most people laugh at my comment and may say something like ‘even madder you mean?!’ But in the quieter moments, when I have time to reflect, I can see that my throw away phrase is an invitation. It’s a nudge from my inner wisdom asking me to take the time to examine where aspects of my own life may have ‘gone mad’.
If I accept this invitation, I might ask myself ‘what’s crazy about my life as this time?’ Where might a stranger look in on my situation or lifestyle and see an element of ‘madness’? I could also turn my statement on its head and consider why the word has never been saner. It’s these types of question that assist me in mining for gold; to alchemize some of the unchallenged beliefs that I carry around with me. That’s the stuff that sets me free and assists me in knowing myself to a deeper level. In examining the answers to these questions, I get to move forward in greater agreement with myself and to uncover what’s really going on inside me. I’m empowered to take aligned action.
When we are irritated by the actions of another, we are being invited to examine this aspect of ourselves. When we observe something playing out in the wider world, our work is to consider what might be happening on a micro level for us. This helps me no end. I can’t ‘fix’ what’s going on out there, but I can turn inwards and attend to the bit that is under my sphere of control. That sets me free from the drama of what I see playing out around me. That’s personally empowering.
A rather delightful reverse side of ‘the mirror’ is that we cannot see in another what we do not possess within ourselves. This means that when we notice the good in the world, or recognise a beautiful trait in another, we also embody this quality. It’s important to breathe this in. There is so much ‘good stuff’ emanating from our collective experience of a global pandemic. Those tingles of admiration and emotion we feel at someone’s selflessness, compassion, brilliance or acts of service to humanity are little sparks to remind us of our own power to create magic and contribute into the world. These insights remind us of our power, passion and purpose. They offer us clues as to where we can be part of the solution, and not add to the problem.
I’m spending time this week looking into the mirror to see what is being reflected back.
Sending love to you all in these interesting times.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this week’s connection to your inner wisdom.
As always, I’d love to hear your comments below.