Today’s card is from the Major Arcana, XIV Temperance. The message is balance and integration of the body and mind, internal and external, person and community. Temperance is a refuge from swinging between extremes.
A recent medical study shows that ‘lifestyle’, by which is meant decent food and some exercise, has a measurable effect on how many days people spend in the hospital.
We know that already anyway. Temperance is a discipline and not always easy, especially in a society that runs more and more on addiction. Workaholics, adrenaline junkies– why do we have these concepts if not for a constant swing from crisis to crisis?
It’s hard for us to find the middle way. Historically, the Temperance Movement of the 19th Century didn’t stop at moderation in alcohol use– they went straight ahead to Prohibition. And we know how that turned out.
Now we have that dumb phrase, ‘zero tolerance’– sounds tough but in most cases is too rigid to implement. There’s plenty of things we shouldn’t tolerate, but ordinary humans are never perfect in anything and it only confuses the issue to pretend that we are.
Coming down off a stressy week, looking for Temperance, think I’ll ride my bike.