FIVE OF PENTACLES, LORD OF MATERIAL TROUBLE

Mercury in Taurus, Mars in Geburah (Fifth Sphere)

   A cripple and a beggar woman trudge through snow, the man on crutches and the woman bare-footed. Your allies know suffering in their very bones, yet they stay together, struggling through desperate times, passing, as if by chance, under a lovely stained-glass window with five glowing pentacles that suggest the top spheres of the Tree of Life, spheres associated with the higher self. Each snowflake seems to batter them a little more. They cannot have illusions and survive the grinding, soul-crushing condition of poverty. The woman passes by without looking at the window, as if unable to believe that beauty and spirituality are anything more than illusions, but the man gazes up, as if for a moment open to the possibilities of higher awareness. Their condition starkly reveals the ugliness and horror of poverty, yet for this brief moment, the light shines for them through the window at dusk in the storm, suggesting that spiritual enlightenment is always possible, even in the worst conditions--if you can remain open and donít become consumed by pain and self-pity. Even though your allies could not be more humble, there is something heroic about them. The influence of Taurus suggests the potency of the life-force that manifests in the struggle for survival. And their love keeps them together through the worst times. Even if they both ignore the spiritual signs of higher awareness, in their struggles they have the potential to manifest the virtue of Mars, courage, a quality of the higher self. But Mercury is also an influence. Thoth, the God of Magic, is the older, Egyptian version of Mercury. In the myth of Isis and Osiris, Thoth helps to resurrect Osiris so that Horus, the higher self on the physical plane, can be conceived, born of many trials.

CORRESPONDING COLOR: Red, flecked with black.

QUALITIES: Showing love, unselfishness, and courage in adversity. Experiencing the higher self through trial. Remaining open, not consumed by self-pity.

POSSIBLE ADVERSARIES: The Liars (Mercury). The Burners (Mars).

Go to the next challenge.

RELATED PATHS:

Pentacles:

The Four of Pentacles.
The Six of Pentacles.

Connecting paths:

The Chariot.
Strength.
Justice.
The Hanged Man.

Astrological associations:

The Magician (Mercury).
The Hierophant (Taurus).