This is the twenty-second post in a series on the Tarot Rug Project (also known as "Exploring the Tarot: 23 Artists Hook the Major Arcana"). To view other rugs in the series, go HERE (that post will be kept up to date as new photos are published and the show travels).
THE SUN: Here is the "classic" Rider-Waite-Smith image: (Can you hear the Beatles song in the background as you view this?)
"The Sun is new each day."
"Just imagine becoming the way you used to be as a very young child, before you understood the meaning of any word, before opinions took over your mind.
The real you is loving, joyful, and free. The real you is just like a flower, just like the wind, just like the ocean, just like the sun."
Don Miguel Ruiz
Let's look at Mary Doig's wonderful interpretation of this tarot card:
A sunny day inclines us to smile more. Doesn't this rug incline you to smile?
Mary Doig is a long-time rug artist and designer from beautiful Nova Scotia. (Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia, in fact.) Mary and husband were at the show's opening in Shelburne Vermont last December and I had the great pleasure of meeting them. Ironically, I had been to Nova Scotia for the first time just a couple of years ago; Mahone Bay was one of the places I most enjoyed seeing. I wish I had known Mary then!
Mary has been hooking for over 20 years and is best friends with the owner of one of the rug hooking shops in Mahone Bay, Encompassing Designs. (In fact, it was Mary who introduced the owner to rug hooking; not only did Christine "take off" with the art, but she created a wonderful business, teaching, and meeting space.) I'm proud to say I've been in that shop, spent quite a bit of time there, and enjoyed it immensely. If you go to Mahone Bay, be sure to stop in.
If you go to the shop's link in that last paragraph and you will see a photo of Mary with the patterns she has designed--you can see that she already loved sunflowers, before she ever took on this particular rug project. Mary doesn't have her own website, but she has guest-blogged about two of her other rugs HERE and HERE. If you read those two short blogs, you'll get a sense of her. And if you love her "Homestead" rug as I do (pictured in the first blog), there's a larger picture of that rug here.
I was struck by how appropriate it was that Mary did The Sun rug for the show, as she struck me as friendly, comfortable, and as sunny as the card itself. Let's look at the two cards side-by-side:
The wall, sunflowers, and sun are all there in Mary's rug; the child and horse are imagined, and the bright red sash has been transformed into one of the borders. I love the way her sunrise has a Japanese styling to it, and radiates, radiates, radiates! And the field of sunflowers she hooked has to be seen to be believed (scroll back up to the larger image to get a better view). It goes on and on, and one can imagine diving into it and running through it for sheer joy. I love the way she did her lettering, which just enhances everything about the rug. This is such a beautiful piece.
WHAT DOES THE CARD MEAN?
The Don Miguel Ruiz quote at the start of this post says it all. This card is about our true identity, when and where we feel most free to "shine," to be ourselves. Whenever it comes up in readings I've done, clients inevitably smile or sigh with pleasure. We all recognize the life-giving nature of the Sun.
Sure, it's possible to get too much of the sun--narcissism might be an example of how that would manifest. But for most of us, it's such a relief to experience warmth, to play, to shine, to be expansive, and to let our true, childlike selves show. This card is all about joy, about coming from the very core of our being, about seizing each moment of happiness as we live it, and about radiating that.
When you get this card, ask yourself:
"Turn your face to the sun and the shadows fall behind you."
"Let us dance in the sun, wearing wild flowers in our hair..."
Susan Polis Shutz
Curious about the rest of the rugs in the exhibit? You can see all the posts by clicking on the link at the very top of this post. There is a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section here (scroll down to the bottom of that post to get to the FAQ).
Thanks for reading. Your comments are always welcome.
I'm a textile artist (traditional rug hooking, punch needle rug hooking, and other textile arts), a long-time meditator, a certified meditation teacher and coach, and focused on learning about the interplay of art, creativity, and mindfulness every day.
SITES TO WATCH:
Insight Meditation Society
Oxford Rug Hooking School
Zentangle: The Official Site
Green Mountain Rug Hooking
Massachusetts Tarot Society