Two of Cups: Balancing the Healing Heart
Here we see two figures standing in intimate proximity to each other holding their personal cups toward one another on equal terms. The symbol of the caduceus behind them, holds the space for a sort of divine union. In Greek mythology, it represents the God Hermes, son of Zeus, ruler of Mercury, the messenger of the gods, the symbol of everyday communication. In western civilization it has been adopted by the medical health profession for the past two centuries, though its origin as we can see is much older, its deeper meaning lost in modern times. As I consider the two figures, perhaps lovers, they represent to me the important balance of the masculine and feminine energies within me, within us all. The Two of Cups solicits an opportunity to cultivate clear communication between these two aspects of Self for ease and flow, returning to a healthy balance.
I love relationships. I fall in love easily. Usually alone in the privacy of my own bedroom. As a young girl I created involved scenarios of my future together with adults and contemporaries alike. I ruminated on strategies to repair discord between fighting family members. I transcribed lengthy explanations about why people misunderstood each other and on ways to mediate reconciliations between family members and peers on the playground. The majority of these communications remained in my head. In fourth grade I anticipated goodbyes as we packed the moving van, my family following my father, who in turn was following a new job opportunity across the country. I fantasized about what I would say to my 10-year-old boyfriend, about how I would express my eternal love for him. I would never forget him. There were long love letters written on looseleaf paper to each childhood girlfriend, to my dance teacher, to my favorite grade-school teacher. Most of these correspondences never were sent to their intended recipient. Pen pals faded away after only weeks of our relocation. These heart connections were replaced by the business of integrating into a new environment, by the desire to follow personal ambitions, by new relationships and heart connections that would satiate my inner ruminating dreams of love and union and peace. This was my sense of "happily ever after”.
As a middle-aged woman who has said goodbye to many friends and loved ones, be it the result of relocation or death, the Two of Cups reveals another layer of communication. I am most taken with the simplicity of the figures' gestures. There is an offering, an acknowledgment of equanimity between these two figures. They are present to each other and to themselves. As with all of the two cards in the tarot deck, there is an element of balance, of juggling, of carefully moving forward while honoring the connection with duality. A lifetime of balancing allows me to witness in the Two of Cups the vulnerability that is partner to the realization of not knowing what will transpire in this union. There is a sense of witnessing Self and other, simultaneously, and allowing for the transformation, the alchemy of one and two. Within this exchange there is promise for understanding and connection.
My thirty years in the healing arts have given me an opportunity to explore the dualities of the healing body. I’ve come to understand that the origin of healing remains as controversial as the caduceus symbol itself. While my practice has focused on and benefitted from my skill as a physical healer working through bodywork, I have grown into the awareness of my true passion; healing the heart. The years of growing into my life’s purpose have transformed my young conviction from believing my physical technique can fix the imbalance in an injured body to a practiced understanding that empowering my clients with the awareness of their own truth becomes the seed to true healing. And herein lies another dimension of the Two of Cups, the relationship between healer and self, between other and I, between surface and within. In a healing practice, the Two of Cups can help to point the way toward a recognition that that my clients aid, and even direct, their own healing process
The healer or guide can help show the way from outer to within, where the real alchemy transpires. The internal inquiry is the path to change. Embracing this change is healing.