In this card, we see the end of a branch from a Monkey Puzzle tree.
Before the name ‘monkey puzzle’ caught on, this tree was often called the Chilean pine. However, is not a pine at all, coming from a completely different family. It is an evergreen conifer. I have read that the tree got its new name simply because it has no low hanging branches, making it difficult to climb. I have also read that because of the covering of leaves on each branch, they are spiteful to hold on to.
Whichever meaning is true, it doesn’t alter the definition of this card, which represents a situation which is complex and hard fix.
Although beautiful, this card brings difficulty into your day. It suggests those things which will cause confusion or obstacles which are difficult to overcome.
When confronted with a challenge like the Monkey Puzzle, most of us will become perplexed. Within many of us is the desire to solve things and triumph over opposition, but unfortunately, we can’t solve everything. Today’s card reminds us to sort those things we can and relinquish our Mission Impossibles.
Of course, this card does not suggest we throw in the towel without trying. Instead, it asks us to choose our battles wisely and accept our limitations. If something isn’t working and is taking up too much of your energy, maybe it is a tree which was never intended for climbing.
Do you feel as though you are banging your head against a wall with regards to a disagreement, relationship or task? Rather than push against the opposition, would it be more beneficial to step back and question whether it’s a fight worth taking on? In some situations, the real step forward is to acknowledge when we’re flogging a dead horse or to realise when someone’s opinion cannot be changed or a specific problem cannot be resolved.
What is represented by The Puzzle in your day?
© Steven Bright Tiferet Tarot 2015
Illustration by Darren Burt