You’re a star!
And in true star-like fashion your existence, the very essence of your life’s story, revolves around you. At least, it should. In the vast expanse of the cosmos, far flung stars weave a breathtaking sight across our night sky. Like the stars above, the star that is you is not alone. Nor do the other stars in this life detract from your luster. You help comprise the beautiful starscape that is humanity. So shine on with your star self.
I’m reading Self Therapy by Jay Earley. In it he writes about Internal Family Systems (IFS) therapy and walks its readers through the process of self healing. The tenets of IFS involve parts of our psyche: protectors and exiles. Protectors shield us from the pain of the exiles. The exiles are our past selves (usually as children) that have experienced pain or trauma that we, for whatever reason, were not equipped to deal with it at the time. Those exiled parts crave healing, and the protectors prevent us from feeling their pain. This often manifests in dysfunctional behaviors. IFS teaches that our protectors are acting within our best interest, they’re doing the best with what they’ve got. This may look like angry outbursts in response to perceived criticism. Procrastination. Any number of behaviors. So even though they may lead us to behave dysfunctionally, we’re to acknowledge their roles in our lives and extend compassion to help heal those exiled parts of ourselves.
This book is helping me to understand–and heal–myself in a way I’ve never thought possible. I cannot recommend this book enough.
So where does The Star come into play?
Tarot is a tool, use it.
I happen to use it for psychological growth and exploration. I think the cards may help us to represent the IFS parts within us. A word of caution: Don’t be deceived by seemingly positive images. Cards like the Sun or 10 of cups, for example, may be telling us we see the world through rose colored lenses–making it seem like everything is okay, even when the world is burning around us.
For this reading, use The Star as the significator to represent the healing energies of your compassionate self.
Before you even shuffle and cut, sit down and study the card. What do you notice? Use your observational skills to notice and describe the card non-judgmentally. Soak up as many details as possible. When you’re ready, sink into a comfortable meditative state, and close your eyes. Focus on your breath to start. You might concentrate on a phrase or image as you breathe. I like to think I’m breathing in peace, and breathing out and surrounding myself with love, when I do this exercise. You’ll find something that works for you.
Once you’ve found that mental sweet spot, bring to mind an image of The Star. Watch it grow into the shape of a door, and then walk into your visualization of the card. Begin exploring. What do you notice? Interact with your environment, or even with the archetype! Get a good sense of her healing energies until you feel you can internalize it.
Then, when you’re ready, bring your attention back to the room. Think of a target behavior you want to address. Shuffle your deck, and pull two cards.
One represents the protector. One represents the exile.
Now do that same meditative exercise, this time with the protector. Enter it non-judgmentally and with a sense of curiosity. Ask questions, gently. It’s important to express gratitude, and acknowledge the work this protector card has been doing to shield you from harm. It’s so necessary to come to the protector with loving kindness and compassion. It has helped you, however dysfunctionally, to the best of its ability. Ask the card’s permission to enter the exile.
Before doing so, make sure that you enter the exile card with the healing, compassionate, lovingly kind energy of your higher self. If you found it helpful, you may turn to the soothing, meditative space of The Star. Make sure you examine, non-judgmentally, the details of the exile card. Once you’re ready, dive into the exiled part of you as represented by the tarot card, and surround it with your inner warmth–the Star that is you, that is enough, and wholly wonderful. Get to know your exile card. It too is a part of you, and every tangible or intangible aspect of you is reason to celebrate and love the person who you are. See where your visualization takes you.
May you be at peace as you explore your life’s story through the lens of tarot.
I hope this exercise has proven helpful! Let me know what you think in the comment section!