I have struggled for days to actually sit down and write something about this card. It is one of my least favourite in the whole deck, and I really didn’t want to post anything too negative. Avoidance was not really getting anything written though so I eventually had to admit defeat and just get on with it.
Out of the three pictures above, I have to admit I actually really like the Shadowscapes and Everyday Witch versions of this card. They both completely change the feel of the card for me, in very different ways, and both seem very warm and inviting. I love the grumpy old tree in Shadowscapes, with his long, established roots and his beautiful golden halo of leaves. I imagine that he is someone who will give you a hard time and make you work for it, but who has wisdom worth hearing. The yoga instructor in the Everyday Witch card just makes me smile. I wanted to refer her to her as the hippy yoga instructor but I am not sure what gives me the impression she is a hippy. She just has that *air* about her. I imagine her to be kind, compassionate and patient.
The Robin Wood deck is more like the image I am used to seeing, however, and it just causes such a negative response from me. It is a card that is full of spiritual authority, spiritual hierarchy and orthodoxy. It is a card that screams conformity, convention and the establishment. This is not a warm spiritual teacher; he is cold, stern and unforgiving of any “sin”. I feel like he is judging my very soul, and I have been found wanting.
I am a pagan, and a very spiritual one at that. I believe that spiritual growth is important, and that it involves some amount of study. I believe in the power of prayer, I see the value in seeking the wise counsel of others. For me though, spirituality isn’t about convention and conformity, it is about finding your place in the world, embracing your true self and saying “this is me, take me or leave me.” I don’t want to fit in, I don’t want to just follow someone else’s tradition and spiritual practice. I want to build a path that works for me and that, ultimately, provides me with spiritual nourishment, even if it does not fit with the established norm.