As we transition from one year to the next, allowing the old to pass and make way for the new, I thought I would pull a card from the Universal Tarot, by Maxwell Miller, to honor this passage. The card I pulled, appropriately enough, is Time.
Time, a Major Arcana card, is commonly known as Temperance. This card is said to deal with the concept of measure, and in the case of the Universal’s renaming of the card to Time, the measurement here is of the cosmic clock.
If one looks closely at the image, the water passing from one cup to the other symbolically represents going with the flow, just as time passes from second to second, minute to minute, hour to hour, day to day, week to week, month to month, and year to year.
As the waters pass, we see an egg with a baby inside, signifying new life, still in development. With regard to time, this suggests it takes time for things to manifest in the physical world. Spiritually speaking, this represents the concept that everything in the physical world first begins as an idea, a thought, followed by a creative act or developmental process in which timing is everything; everything comes at its Right and Perfect Time.
Temperance is normally depicted as a guardian angel holding the cups, and, in my experience with Tarot, represents the healing arts and sciences. Here, in the Universal’s Time card, this angel is Thoth, from Egyptian mythology. Thoth is the Lord of Time, the patron of healers, ruler of herbal remedies and natural medicines; his appearance is a visual pun that “time heals all.”
As a card that is to convey a message for the passing of time, from one year to the next, I perceive it as this:
Let this be a time of new beginnings, a time of potential for the future (baby in the egg). In order to make room for the new things coming, we must consider letting some things go (waters passing from cup to cup). If we are holding on to pains, hurts, disappointments from the past, we are being encouraged to begin healing processes that will enable us to let those things go (Thoth the healer). But, it will take time. We must be patient, and we must be gentle with ourselves through the process (Thoth putting his foot in the water, one toe at a time). Everything happens in its Right and Perfect Time–and we must be adaptable and learn to go with the flow–not against it.
Happy New Year!