“We have to dare to be ourselves, however frightening or strange that self may prove to be.” ― May Sarton.
What does it mean to be authentic? It's a term we hear a lot these days. You have likely seen advice popping up everywhere from books to the internet to 'find your true voice' and be yourself. But how much of that is forced and by default, not authentic at all? What does it mean to be truly authentic and why is it on my mind today?
It's on my mind because the Tarot community, which you would think of as being made up of spiritually minded and enlightened folk, is actually full of some really fake arsed people. Honesty and integrity are qualities I'm seeing in my peers far less than jealously, back stabbing and people pretending to be a lot of things they are not. In my opinion it is our responsibility as readers and healers to be trustworthy. People come to us in some of their most vulnerable moments and share their souls with us. We are advisers, confidants and guides.
Why in the name of batman's biscuits should any one want to put that faith in and open their selves up to someone who can't even be honest about who they are? They shouldn't. It is, I feel, our duty to work with honesty and integrity not only with our clients and seekers, but with our peers also.
I don't tend to shy away from my own voice and truth anymore. I spent a lot of my life trying to fit in. I wanted to be accepted and hated the fact that I was different and therefore stood out. These days I think sod it! I'm me. Not everyone will like me, but not everyone matters. What matters to me is that I am true to myself and open about who I am with my clients. You get what it says on the tin.
"Beauty is truth's smile when she beholds her face in a perfect mirror'' -Rabindranath Tagore.
If you are you, unashamedly and apologetically you, you will attract criticism. Do it anyway! Own your truth and let your inner Queen (or King) of Swords shine. You are most authentic when you stop trying and are just natural. The right clients, peers and friends will be drawn to you.
I asked some of the members of the Facebook group I teach in 3 of Cups Tarot Community what cards they thought reflected authenticity and being 'real'. There were a variety of great answers from The Queen of Pentacles to The Sun. Two ladies thoughts really stood out to me though and I share them here with permission.
"For me - Empress. She is as open as it can be. I think she does not plot and does not play mind games. She is like humanly honest AND warm and caring. Justice would be more of a fair thing. It also does not lie but it can say all the truth no matter how harsh it is with no intention of making it sound nicer. Empress would say the same with care and honest empathy" - Evija Vaikina
"Honesty and authenticity make me think of the Hermit, Judgement and also the Lovers. The Hermit because despite the social ostracism that comes from that lifestyle, he cannot be anything other than what he is, his sole/soul purpose is seeking truth. Judgement because that call is heralding a time of rebirth into a new authentic self, you have been tested, tried and even broken by the journey through the Majors so far and now know what is truly important to you, the lies and manipulations of the world and your darker, suffering self hold no sway any longer so you are free to pursue your true calling as your true self. The Lovers because ultimately I think that's what people seek in their relationships, a person with whom they feel they can be totally honest and be authentically themselves." - Aslynn Degerland
For me of course it is the Queen of Swords who I seem to be channelling quite a lot at the moment!
As always I'd love to hear your thoughts,