I celebrated my 61st birthday this past week. As I do from time to time, I worked with my Rune cards, asking the question, “What do I need to know now for my highest good?” The card I selected was Constraint. The message began like this: “Limitations define us, ordeals temper us. See the Great Teacher behind every disguise.” The message continued: “The role of Constraint is to identify our ‘shadow,’ our dark or repressed side, areas where growth has been stunted, resulting in weaknesses that we project onto others.”
I wasn’t thrilled to get that message on my birthday, but then I connected it to this week’s lesson on the power of limitations. Both the Rune message and the lesson seemed like bad news at first blush – who wants to think about getting by with less? – but then I started to think about the wisdom of discernment – making conscious choices to use what I have to its maximum potential instead of always looking for more, more, more. That grasping tendency rises up in me not only in my desire to acquire additional material possessions, be it art supplies or shoes; it also shows up in my constant craving to be more intelligent, more creative, more popular – more, more, more of everything, which has at its root a sense of not-enoughness just as I am.
I didn’t sort through my fabric collection this week, nor did I attempt to rework a piece of art that doesn’t please me, although I intend to do both, soon. I did spend a lot of time considering that it’s time for me to focus on what’s most important, what I cannot do without, and let go of the extraneous stuff that keeps me from being able to see the forest for the trees.