Monday, 16 July 2012

Dark Justice

©Raffaele De Angelis
For this third draw comparing the Dark Fairytale Tarot (Lo Scarabeo, 2012) and the Dark Angels Tarot (Lo Scarabeo, 2010), the card to pop up is Justice (numbered VIII in both).

In the Dark Fairytale Tarot, a woman faces right, towards sunshine pouring in between elegant, ornate columns.  She stands on a dark, cobbled floor, her white wings catching some of the sunlight, as she holds a sword up to the radiance.  In her left hand, we see a small scales, but her focus is all on the sword, as she looks directly at it and the light that flows over it.

There's a real feeling of divine justice to this image - she is guided by the light and wields the sword to cut through the darkness, rather than in an angry fashion.  She doesn't focus on the exact balance, as expressed by the scales, because her focus is on the intent rather than the prosaic detail, the soul behind the action rather than its outward consequences.

©Luca Russo
The Dark Angels Tarot is quite different in many ways.  The woman here has black wings, and her hair hangs across her face, obscuring her view.  Her gaze is directed towards the ground, or perhaps towards the feather floating down by her thigh.  There is a sword in her left hand, and a scales in her right.  Yet, each looks as though she is connected to it without really holding it, there without truly being grasped.  Around her, the landscape is blurry, as though she is somewhere in the clouds, though her feet seem planted on a firm surface.  A number of feathers float around her, reminiscent of Ma'at and her scales of justice weighing people's hearts and intent.

What is justice to a Dark Angel?  She has made her own choices, not following the rules laid down for her by another.  Does she judge others by her own standards, or by whether they live up to the standards they each make for themselves?

Perhaps, in the end, both versions of Justice are judging people by their own higher selves, by their intent and their inner light.

I may have a tough choice to make tonight.  I am going to supervision, and will tell the group that I am stopping work over the summer.  I should probably have told them last time we met, but it all felt so far away at the time.  If my client doesn't show up tomorrow, a distinct possibility after failing to attend last week, then theoretically I wouldn't have to make the two hour return journey again til Autumn.  That two-hour journey might not sound like a big deal, but it means I miss bedtime with my son, and that I get home horribly late, often after an early morning start.  However, if I didn't go, it wouldn't be much closure for the group.  So, I need to weigh up the pros and cons carefully.

I am grateful for the reminder to assess what's right for me carefully.


  1. Wow these are two striking cards are they not? and I love your interpretations of them both.

    The first as you say does seem to indicate holding up to the light the truth so that it can be seen by all. That shaft of light reminds me of a spot light, once the truth is out in the open all can see it and judge it fairly. I don't know why this first card makes me think that - perhaps she doesn't hold the scales up, because speaking the truth creates it's own balance?

    The second card is stunning, and the first thought that came to my mind was the hair that covered her eye, gave me the impression of not being influenced by all that surrounds her but having the ability to withdraw and consider without distraction the facts before her. The feathers floating around her remind me of all the differing thoughts that can cloud ones mind and yet she seems to keep her focus as you say towards the ground and stability. The sword is held high in the action pose, showing me that her mind is working in order to weigh up those facts she's knows and is searching for a fair and rational solution without being side tracked.

    1. Lovely interpretations, Helen! You always bring such wisdom to how you see the world :) I love the spotlight metaphor, and I'd noticed the Dark Angel's hair as a semi-blindfold, but hadn't thought of the feathers as the random thoughts that float around distracting us - lovely!