V. The Hierophant

Stretch your roots deep into the Earth and feel the ages past.

During my darkest period, I spent much of my time reflecting on the need for a deeper meaning. I wished and lusted for a sense that my life was not only important, but that there was a reason for my personal suffering.

In 2012, I was reaching the end of a heart-wrenching fallow time, what I typically refer to as my spiritual depression. My connection to my patron Anubis seemed to have severed. I felt lost and hollow and I suffered both spiritually and emotionally. But as graduation rolled around and I began to set a course for my personal life, moving from Chicago to Washington, D.C. with my boyfriend, I began to feel more of a purpose, more of a focus on my spirituality.

The Hierophant Stephanie Pui-Mun Law

My spiritual depression, however, was marked by periods where I would “fall” into The Forest (sometimes referred to as The Forest of Faith, or as you can see above, the Wood of Smoke and Bone, that place where the aetheric and the earthly combine). These events were typically times where my eyes would glaze over and I would sense myself in battered clothes, barefoot and groping my way through a dark wood. Once, I slipped and fell to my knees, then collapse on the forest floor, bits of old wood and rotting leaves pressing into my face. It was this time that The Morrigan came into my life, urging me to pursue my own path. Later, I would find myself once more in darkness, only to plunge my hands into my chest and pull out the knotted, gnarled rope that bound my heart and release the tiny spark of flame within. I used that flame to light a lantern to help guide me through the darkness, finally starting to make my way once more to something resembling a path. It was dank and covered in brush and brambles, but I began to pick my way along it when I found it, letting thorn and stone mark my feet as I made my way.

Then, in the winter of 2012, I began to lose my mind. It’s an old story, and one I don’t like telling too much. Many of those reading this likely already have some indication of that time. During this time, I fell hard on my beliefs and my gods; fervent prayer became the focus of my life as I begged my gods to help me maintain some semblance of myself. Eventually, through therapy and medication (and the help of my gods), I arrived to where I am today.

As I mused on the Hierophant the last week or so, I honestly wasn’t sure what to write. This card denotes wisdom and knowledge, and I suppose it represents more of a goal for me than where I am in my life currently. It is a combination of scholar and mystic, two things that, it seems, I have been forever attempting to reconcile, but with much difficulty. I desire a strong academic foundation, but do not want to lose sight of the arcane mysteries of the world, or even that which lays beyond it. Once more, I find myself burning with the fervent desire of one kindling their passions and aiming to rebuild those things important to them. For me, that is my religion and my spirituality. And as I learn more and act more, I hope to find them.

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