When the Tower comes to call

By far, the most anxiety-inducing card in the tarot deck is the Tower. A lightning bolt slams into a tower, shattering it and sending poor hapless folks plummeting to what looks like certain death.  It’s generally read as a harbinger of cataclysmic change and destruction brought on by forces entirely out of your control.

I’ll admit that I’ve dreaded the day when this card comes up for me in a reading. Destruction and cataclysmic change are definitely not on my list of things that I enjoy. I’m dreadfully adverse to even the most benign sorts of change. And yet, I laughed when I turned up the Tower as my card of the day yesterday, because no day in recent memory more perfectly embodied being powerless to forces beyond your control. The situation with the COVID-19 virus is escalating quickly: my kids’ schools are closed for two weeks after next week’s March Break, events are being cancelled, and new cases are getting closer and closer to home. It’s an unprecedented world situation and none of us have any power beyond our own small spheres of influence.

Image of Tower tarot card

We have a lot to learn about fear from the Tower, though. Sometimes fear itself can be more powerful and more debilitating than whatever it is that we are afraid of.  Note that the Tower is that it isn’t the end of the cycle; it comes about two-thirds of the way through the Fool’s Journey, and what follows in the wake of the destruction wrought by the Tower is enlightenment. Once we’ve hit that hard bottom, no matter how terrifying the fall might have seemed, we have survived to fight another day. With luck, maybe we’ve even been empowered by lessons learned along the way.

So one hopes that we, collectively, can learn something from the chaos that the Tower marks today. The lightning has struck and the tower is falling. What can you do?

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