From the Robin Wood Tarot

The run of major cards continues and, after a week’s break, the lesson on sexuality resumes.While Sturt Desert Rose addresses sexual shame and guilt, Billy Goat Plum is for sexual revulsion and physical revulsion. On the physical level, it can be used to address skin disorders.

Its positive outcome is a recognition of the inherent beauty in all living things and an acceptance of your physical body.

Before I turn to the card of Strength, I will examine my own attitudes to my body and sexuality and how they have changed since John left me.

Marriage is a safe haven in which to contain our sexual natures. But it can give the illusion that we have that aspect of our selves understood and under control.

Effectively, in one sense, I placed responsibility for my sexual safety in the hands of another. Is that ever a good idea?

One of the greatest fears I faced on being alone for the first time in 20 years was how to manage the wild beast of my sexuality. How, in forming new relationships, to know when to get sexy, when and how to raise discussions about sexual health, how to honour my sexuality without dishonouring my primary role of mother to two girls, who will be looking to my example when determining these issues for themselves in due course.

How to tread the rocky Middle Way between living like a nun and installing a turnstile at the bedroom door?

And on top of all that, the knowledge that I was 20 years older with a body that had borne two children with a man who, on his way out, had attacked my sexual ‘failings’ and attractiveness in the most explicit terms.

It’s been six years of learning how to deal with all these things and my biggest insight is that the idea of sexual shame or guilt is barely addressed in the stereotypes of Will She/Won’t She Ice Queen/Whore.

Which brings me to the beautiful card of Strength and its graphic depiction of the wild beast tamed, not by force or coercion but by compassionate understanding and love.

I have really enjoyed this week. I have imagined my sexual power walking beside me as a big, beautiful cat and enjoyed the awareness of her, curled at my feet as I wait for the bus or lolling against the sink while I make a coffee.

It is clear that when the holy trinity of Heart, Head and Sexuality are in harmony we walk in wisdom and can fully trust our own judgment.

The choice is not between Instinct and Intellect. The choice lies in how we balance the two and ride the life force with focus and direction.