True silence is the rest of the mind, and is to the spirit what sleep is to the body,
nourishment and refreshment.
~ William Penn ~
I get a lot of the ideas when I’m resting – either when I’m meditating or getting some kind of work done on my back, like physical therapy or acupuncture. That’s where I get my best ideas, maybe because I’m balancing my body.
~ Katy Perry ~
Seasonally speaking—at least for Northeastern US—this time of year is nature’s time of rest.
The sap is not yet running in the trees, fields lie fallow, waiting for the warmth of the spring sun, and bear and other mammals hibernate deep in their winter dens. Even the groundhog dives back for a few more weeks of sleep.
So I am not surprised when I do readings for clients and the 4 of Swords turns up as it did for clients recently and in my Monday’s Tarot Message from the Muse.
The suit of Swords in the tarot usually represents the element of Air in the realm of the mind. If you think about what happens in your mind (like thinking!), Air can represent thoughts, attitudes, beliefs, and communications. And, just as with the mind, most of the cards in the suit of Swords are challenging, even this card where the man lies resting atop the four swords.
Why is resting a challenge?
Because, if you are anything like my clients, writers and other creatives, you are way beyond busy. You might even have bought into the idea (Swords) that if you aren’t busy then there is something wrong with or your work. Time’s a-wasting, right? As much as spiritual teachers have said to focus on being instead of doing, people have a hard time believing and practicing that.
The pressure to keep producing continues even into “retirement”. Retire and you find yourself fixing up the house, tending to grandchildren, volunteering for community organizations, and wondering when you can rest.
I’ve written before about the importance of silence and solitude, about taking time away, and about resting and retreating. All of those are important to the well-being of your mind and body.
And, of course, to your relationship with your Muse.
Behind the reclining figure is a rose window with the Chi-Ro symbol, the symbol for the Christ. This space, this time for the reclining man, is sacred and feeds the soul.
I find it interesting that the Chi Ro, before the time of Christ, was also used to mark a particularly valuable or relevant passage in the margin of a page, abbreviating chrēston (good). Much like we use a highlighter today.
So, rest for the brain is good, good for healing and restoration.
Sleep isn’t the only way to take a brain break. Other brain breaks might include meditation, a walk, repetitive exercise, dance, handwork like knitting, gardening, or yes, even television.
Different kinds of brain breaks work for different kinds of brain fatigue.
Give yourself permission to regularly take a brain break. Rest and renew your mind in whatever way feels good–and works.
You could do a ritual of quieting and breathing before writing. Light a candle, then let silence descend…
Let your mind rest before–and after–you write or create.
The card is from The Legacy of the Divine Tarot by Ciro Marchetti.