I don't know about you, but whenever I think about Medusa, I think of the dark goddess with the snakes in her hair, from Greek mythology. If you looked at her, you turned to stone.
However, the deck we are considering is called African Goddess Rising. We're not talking about the Medusa from Greek mythology. So I had to do a little bit of research which I found really exciting; to learn about the original Medusa who comes from Libya. She was adopted by Greek mythology and some of the stories and beliefs about her changed, but she originated from Libya.
We see behind the figure of Medusa, the triple moon. Medusa was one aspect of the triple moon goddess. That triple moon goddess was called Anatha. Anatha had 3 aspects:
- the waxing moon which was the Athena, or the maiden aspect
- the full moon which was Metis, the mother
- and finally the waning moon, the dark side of the moon, and that represented Medusa; Medusa known as the crone.
A crone is depicted as an old wise woman but not necessarily in a nice light. It's often associated with witches or more sinister old ladies who have lived a long life, have a lot of wisdom and knowledge, but they don't necessarily use it for the positive.
So, Medusa is the dark side, considered to be the shadow side of the maiden, Athena.
This card is about rage.
It's an oracle card.
Whenever we tune into oracle cards, the messages we receive (and I tune in with the angels to receive the messages), the angels don't send you messages of low vibrations. And rage is a very low vibrational emotion. So why would there be an oracle card called rage? What's this about?
What the angels are saying through this card is you need to feel every single emotion; you want to experience emotion. As humans we need to experience opposites; we need to experience dark as well as light, we need to experience night as well as day, we need to experience rage as well as joy. You need to honour and experience all those emotions because if you don't let an emotion out, if you don't release it, if you don't cleanse yourself of that emotion, and it is really destructive for your soul.
However, on the other side, if you're always in rage and you're an angry person, you're living in very low emotions. You want to raise those emotions.
What I found interesting about this card was that it felt like Medusa had two different faces. The red circular one, the real angry side of her, the one that we know from Greek mythology, the one that will turn you to stone. But look at her as the main character on the card, she still has snakes in her hair but she doesn't look so angry. If you even look at her stance. She's not standing full-on as if she's about to take somebody on. She's actually slightly turned. It's a slightly more gentle stance. She's not ready to go in for the fight.
So whilst it's important to feel all your emotions, there's a difference between, for example, feeling threatened and actually being physically threatened. There's a big difference. You want to understand the reality of the situation. Are you actually being threatened? Is somebody physically hurting you? Or are you feeling threatened? Are you feeling the hurt?
And if it's the feeling, you have to release it in a positive way. Because you want your soul to grow and develop. So don't hold onto it. It's really important to release it.
The thing is, whenever we think of the word 'rage', we think of it as a very negative thing. But whenever you experience rage within you, depending on how you experience it, it can be destructive or it can be expansive.
How can rage be expansive?
Well think of rage. Whenever you've got passion and rage in your heart it makes you do things. It makes you lead protests, it makes you change the wrongs that you see about you in the world. You've got that kick inside of you to go forward.
Whenever rage is a destructive thing, it's whenever you take it out on people and you hurt people. They don't deserve it. They don't need it.
You want to see and you want to learn what the rage is within you. It can be healthy rage or it can be unhealthy rage.
What I also saw on the card, two things that also felt really important. I know Medusa is associated with snakes, but I saw other snakes and I instantly heard the phrase, "a snake in the grass".
What's a snake in the grass?
Well, it's somebody that maybe can't be as trusted as you would love them to be. An example might be when you're talking about this girl or guy you've taken a liking to and your supposed friend goes behind your back and starts dating them. That's a snake in the grass.
What you want to do is find those snakes in the grass because they are bringing up in you, unhealthy rage. You want to get them to crawl out from the grass, reveal themselves (they will do through time). It's not a case of getting them to leave your life, dismissing them from your life, it's a case of finding the snakes in the grass and standing up for yourself but, like Medusa is standing in the picture, you're not standing up for a battle, you're not squaring up to them. You're taking that slightly more gentle stance. You're still standing strong, you're standing upright, and you're going to defend yourself, but not in an aggressive way. You're using the hurt and the rage that you are experiencing in a positive way. You're not using it in a negative way.
The other thing that stood out for me on this card was the lake in the background. Look how smooth the water is.
You would expect a card that talks about rage to have really choppy, angry water. But this water is really smooth. Water we associate with the emotions. This is saying whenever you feel the rage rise up inside you, understand it, know why it's there, get an appreciation of it. Just don't let it take over. Don't let it cause choppy waters, don't let it take over your emotions. Understand it and deal with it in a calm and positive manner. You can deal with rage, you can release it in a healthy way. Don't do it in an unhealthy way. Release it in a healthy way so the water still remains calm.
You can tell people how they have made you feel. You can explain your stance to people and why you are feeling angry. And you can do so without losing your temper, without letting your emotions go crazy. You can do so from a very calm perspective. And whenever you actually do it from a calm perspective, people will actually listen to you.
Think of it in life. If somebody starts really losing their temper with you and your temper rises as well, you don't get very far. You're just banging around with each other and hurting each other even more. Whereas if somebody says, "you've really hurt me because..." and they keep their rage calm, but it's still there, they're just able to express it in a calm way, you listen to that, you respect it more. And, as a result, you learn from it and you may change the way you have treated that person, as an example.
This card I find absolutely fascinating. I have now discovered a whole new look to Medusa, a dark goddess who talks about feeling your feelings, experiencing your feelings because that's part of what we are here to do. We are human beings, we have emotions. And it's important not to hide the darker and heavier emotions, but to experience them so we can release them and let higher emotions in.
We're talking about experiencing all your emotions inlcuding the low ones but doing so in a healthy way, releasing them in a healthy way. Be like Medusa, the dark goddess from Libya, the wise woman, the slightly darker side; the darker side of the moon, the darker side of the maiden goddess, Athena. You have a shadow side. Don't dampen it. Don't try and hide it. We all have a shadow side. It has to come to the surface every now and then for us to address problems, to grow, and to expand. However, we are being invited to do that in a very healthy manner.
Reference: This beautiful card is from African Goddess Rising Oracle Deck by Abiola Abrams, illustrated by Destiny Powell
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