Artist: Ravynne Phelan
Endings, Beginnings, Cycles, Transformation, Transmutation, Change, Growth
– Let go of the past
– The future is unknowable
– Change is unavoidable
– There is no going back
– Allow yourself to mourn
– Death/Rebirth is a gradual process
– Shed your skin
– The dark night of the soul
– Allow innocence to be reborn
– Focus on the short-term future
– A change in beliefs, attitude or behavior
The Death/Rebirth card symbolizes cycles and change. Death/Rebirth is the death of the old and the birthing of the new. It is time to let go of the past and turn to face a new and unknown future with the awareness that there is no going back. It is time to begin again, sometimes with nothing but memories, and at other times with everything external unchanged, but with your mind so altered that everything seems different, strange and unfamiliar. It is a time to pass from one stage or state of being to another – and to be transformed so completely that the person undergoing the change no longer recognizes themselves. They are the caterpillar that has become a butterfly. An irreversible process of transmutation is complete. The person they were is forever gone, and they have been reborn. Life as they know it has changed.
Change can inspire many little painless deaths and sometimes great deaths born of intense loss that must be mourned before we can face the future with excitement and anticipation once more. The loss of a spouse or family member, the end of a long-term relationship or career, retirement, and illness are just a few experiences that can bring about a death and rebirth process.
Ours is a perpetual journey of undoing, being and becoming. The death preceding rebirth can be quick and sudden, or slow and painful. In the process of dying, everything in life revolves around the death …the pain, the suffering, the anguish, the loss, the guilt, the anger, and the fear. The pain can be so real it is debilitating. The fear can be so paralyzing that it halts all growth and has one withdrawing from life itself. We can cycle around, analyzing, questioning, preventing our wounds from healing, refusing to accept that life has changed, and there is nothing that can be done to restore it to what it was. That stage of life is over. There are only two choices – remain in limbo, or accept reality, surrender to death, and be reborn.
The rebirth process can also be problematic. It is not an instant process. Sometimes, before we can soar, we must also learn how to fly all over again. Yes, our outlook can be positive, but the future is still unknown. Our beliefs have changed. Our perception and understanding of the world around us have changed. Our roles and purpose have changed. Our lives, and state of mind, and being are not as they were. We know what we are capable of, but first we must learn and adapt to the changes that led to the little death in the first place.
The Death/Rebirth card is all about renewal, regerneration, and new beginning. Like the seasons, we are bound by a cycle of life, death, and rebirth. Like the planet we dwell upon, we experience seasons and stages – spring, summer, autumn and winter.
Spring is a time of new growth, summer a time of fruition, autumn a time of letting go and dying, and winter a time of dormancy and regeneration. Autumn and winter can inspire feelings of loss and fear, We fear death and change because we do not know what comes after; but the truth is that we do know – but we are so accustomed to life as it is now, that the idea of anything different creates resistance. There is, however, no halting change, and just as we know and trust that spring will follow winter, we can know and trust that after death we will be reborn.
Death is just a gateway to a new reality, a new stage of your life journey, while rebirth is symbolic of an evolving and expanding consciousness.
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