Chakra Mandala I was definitely surprised. Here, Carol has created a gorgeous flower, with the Root Chakra as its stem and the Heart Chakra as its blossom. A bright blue sky surrounds it, as it grows up from waving grasses, reaching for the sun. These combined energies are Carol's representation of the Emperor.
While I can understand the Root (Muladhara) Chakra being here, the Heart (Anahata) Chakra is a less obvious choice for me. The Root Chakra, with its four petals, represents our sense of security and groundedness. In this it fits well with the ideas of boundaries and structure that the Emperor represents. The Heart Chakra is, at the first level, about love, compassion, and opening to others. However, it is also connected on a physical level with the hands, and so has aspects of building and making. Making things in a structured way would fit with Emperor-type energy.
This quite positive take on the Emperor makes me think of Janet Boyer's comparison of the Emperor and Empresses energies. Her point is that, in a garden as in life, we need rules and structure, we need someone to weed and to put things in an appropriate place. If we just had wild growth, none of the plants would do as well, as they would not have their individual needs met and would face a lot of competition. So, creating rules and boundaries can actually be a way of expressing love, and helping ourselves and others to grow.
Today I shall spend some quality time with BB, who I often draw as the Emperor - he is a Capricorn, and pretty keen on structure. Also a little tyrant, but then, maybe that's because I don't exercise enough of my Emperor discipline :(
I am grateful for the structures in my life which allow me to grow.