not a tiger



When you first look at this card, you might think, "I'm not sure I can get a message out of this card. There's doesn't seem to be too much going on." Because, in essence, what you have is a forest of bamboo and a tiger; an unicorn pretending to be a tiger. You have a couple of colours. But that's really it.

So how can you get a message out of this card?

The symbols primarily caught my eye: the bamboo and the symbol of a tiger. And whenever you consider both those symbols, you actually get a lot of information and it pulls together a beautiful message. So let's go through it.

Let's consider the tiger first, because this unicorn is being depicted as a tiger. What do you know about a tiger? What words do you associate with it? Well, the word here on the card is majesty. However, when I think of a tiger, I think of fearlessness, courage. If you think of a tiger going on a hunt, how low it is to the ground - it's really graceful. And because it is so low to the ground you might consider it to be grounded. And whenever you're grounded you know what's going on around you because you're there in the present moment.

With a tiger as well, you think of strength. And a lot of the qualities that you associate with the lion, you also would associate with a tiger, with the difference being that the tiger has stripes. And we know, whenever we consider animals with stripes such as zebras, no two tigers and no two zebras are alike. Each one has got unique stripes.

So what is this all telling you?

Well, it's inviting you to be fearless, to have courage, to move forward with stealth and with ability, staying grounded and being acutely aware of your surroundings.

However, we'll get the full message whenever we consider everything else on the card.

So, let's look at the next symbol on this card, the symbol of bamboo.

Not all bamboos necessarily grow the same, however, whenever I see bamboo on a card, I think of Chinese bamboo. And what is really special about Chinese bamboo: it's like any plant, it needs loads of nourishment and nurturing, it needs watering, it needs sunlight, it needs warmth to grow. But if you plant Chinese bamboo, you look after it and nourish it for 4 years and, seemingly, using your eyes, nothing happens because it doesn't grow. So you're looking after this piece of bamboo and it's not growing but you're being consistent - you're looking after it and looking after it. Is it sleeping? I don't know...

And then on the 5th year, it suddenly has a growth spurt. A bamboo when it has its growth spurt in the 5th year can grow 25m in only 6 weeks. That's what you call a growth spurt!

But what about the 4 years when it's been doing nothing? Has it been sleeping? Has it been hibernating and getting ready to have this growth spurt? Well actually, no. What it's been doing is growing underground. You haven't been able to see it growing so you may not think that anything's happening. However, it's been growing a really robust root system. And it's been growing in all directions so that whenever year 5 comes and it goes through this growth spurt, it has the foundation to support it, the strength to hold it so it doesn't fall over and die.

The final thing about this card is the colour green. And, for me, green is the colour of healing. And that sums up the message behind this card. This card, for me, is all about healing. There are some light coloured greens and some dark coloured greens, so it's saying to me there have been times whenever you've had to do a little bit of healing and then there have been times whenever you've had to do some really deep healing.

So how do we tie all of this information together?

Well, it's all about healing. And the bamboo has already grown. So it's saying, you have put in the hard work. You really have been working hard on yourself for quite some time now. And now the healing is all coming together. Because, when you've been putting in that hard work, you have been doing it fearlessly with strength and with courage (the tiger), you have been doing it in your own way (the stripes), you have been following your intuition (tigers have got a really acute sense of sight and sense of hearing - they sense everything that's going on around them). And by using your intuition, possibly clairvoyance or clairaudience in particular, you have found ways to heal yourself.

So you've been really working hard. And now look where you are. You're in this beautiful bamboo forest. Imagine a tiger stealthily on a hunt through this bamboo forest. The bamboo is going to hide him so he can creep up on his prey much easier than he would do in the open plain where the prey could easily see him. So this is telling us, you have done so much healing and now your healing has come to the fore and now you can continue forward fearlessly with strength, with majesty, with courage. Keep on going. But also be acutely aware of your surroundings. Remain grounded and in the present moment because healing is a continuous journey. Just because you may have been doing a lot of deep healing and some lighter healing as well, doesn't mean to say the healing has come to an end. You've done so much. Your healing has grown so much. You've healed yourself so much. But you still need to nurture and nourish the bamboo around you - you need to nurture and nourish yourself mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually, so that you can continue on your healthy journey.

However, you might also be thinking, "I haven't actually been spending years working on myself and healing myself. So this message can't be for me. It's only for those people who already have been working on themselves and now they're being encouraged to be grounded, stay present, and keep going."

Well, this message is also for you.

It is an encouragement for you to do the healing work, whether it's light healing or deep healing. Because, what the angels are saying to you is, if you haven't started on your healing journey, look what's ahead of you if you start today. Be patient. You will do a lot of healing on yourself, you will choose a healing modality that you resonate with and you enjoy, and you do healing on yourself. And for quite some time, you might not notice a difference. But be patient. Stick it out. Keep going. Because if you keep going, regularly and consistently, all of a sudden everything's going to fall into place and your healing's going to spurt like bamboo in its 5th year because you have been working diligently on yourself and you may not have seen the progress but there's been something happening underneath and it's been working and you've been growing a really strong root system or foundation that will support you when all of a sudden everything clicks into place.

If you haven't started healng, you're being invited to be fearless whenever it comes to your healing. You won't do yourself any harm. The worst-case scenario would be that you don't make a difference. But the angels aren't saying that. They're saying, be fearless, be courageous with your healing. Choose something that works for you. Combine, perhaps, different modalities but stick with them. Don't follow them for just a couple of months and then think it's not working for you and give up, really stick with them and eventually things will fall into place. But be courageous.

The tiger doesn't get his prey necessarily the first time. He has to follow up. Because, even in a bamboo forest, the prey may hear the bamboo rattle and may scurry off. But the tiger doesn't give up. He keeps going and going and going. Because he's hungry and you want to be hungry for healing.

But at the same time, they're saying, don't do healing the way other people tell you to do it. Don't necessarily go down the same route that everybody else is. Because you are unique. You wear your own stripes. You are completely unique and different from anybody else. So, tune into your intuition. What guidance are you receiving through your intuition from the spirit realm, for example? What guidance are you following? Be strong and courageous and follow your own path whenever it comes to healing. Don't do what everybody else tells you to do because it's not necessarily right for you.

You know yourself, even though you may think you do not know yourself. Inside, if you delve deep inside and let your intuition come to the fore, you will find the right path for you and they're encouraging you to walk that path, to be fearless, to walk it with pride, to be humbly majestic and, if you do, this will happen for you as well; the healing will suddenly fall into place.

This is a card that, whenever you first look at it, you don't think there's a huge message coming through but the message, through 2 symbols, is incredibly powerful. And incredibly motivating too because, think about it, if you are just starting your healing journey and you've been working on yourself for 2 or 3 months but you're not seeing any change, well you might easily give up because we're so used to expecting overnight success, whenever overnight success does not happen no matter what area you're talking about. And this is giving you an uplifting messagge, saying, keep on going, keep on going, keep on going, because you will get there in the end. Just be patient. Keep moving one step forward. Be gracious about it and keep your belly close to the ground; be grounded, be aware of your surroundings, be aware of everyone around you but heed your own intuition whenever it comes to healing.

Reference: This beautiful card is from Unicorns Oracle Deck by Paolo Barbieri, text by Rachel Paul

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