The Knight of Pentacles is a slow, thorough, accountable and responsible archetype. This is the workhorse of the deck and whether female or male this energy prides itself in accomplishment. The work is obviously not for fame or glory as this one plays the supporting role and the main theme is to be of service to humanity. Showing up, doing good work and following through are rare qualities not to be taken for granted within yourself or others. The value here lies in the awareness of wisdom, honesty and slow movement. We live in an uncertain and impatient world right now so this energy might be frustrating to some and others may enjoy it. Depends on the situation. Like nature you can’t force new cycles, they come when they come and leave when they leave.

The shadow side of this creature is what’s termed as the Dark Knight, known as the one who ushers in the ‘dark night of the soul’. In life we travel through our own darkness, shadowy parts, fear, ugliness, disappointment, loss, shame and guilt in order to see it’s purpose, release it and move toward a lighter and more joyful way of being. It’s here we embrace guilt and shame from this lifetime and others and ask ourselves if these are the values we’d like to live by. If we do we fall prey to inappropriate servitude, fear, martyrdom, suffering and become the sacrificial lamb instead of the angel of resurrection. If we don’t we’re headed toward more freedom, truth and authenticity.

Patterns of over-giving and self neglect and negation attract those who overtake and show the shadowy side of being self centered. The light needs the dark and dark needs the light. The question becomes which one is which? We can project or cast blame onto those who point out the imbalance or we can learn the lesson, step toward awareness and create balance where it’s necessary. Herein lies the narcissist/empath problem. If we’re losing ourselves to some romantic, irrational, empathic perception of saving others then we get the wake up call from the insecure, selfish, childish and attention seeking narcissist to balance out the equation. This is what I term ‘the necessity of narcissism’. If we weren’t swinging to far to the extreme of service to the point of loss of self we wouldn’t need the energy to come along and redirect us back to the need to hold onto to self. It’s the pendulum swing. In a divided society such as ours right now we’re seeing a lot of extremes from one side to another, finger pointing and projection especially.

Personally, I don’t like either of these extremes. We all now know how much we don’t enjoy having to deal with the narcissist but how many of us are just as unhappy with the overrated battle of who deserves the most because they’ve suffered more? To sacrifice something for the greater good of the whole is still viewed as noble and higher minded when in fact in most cases it stems from a perception of lack and inadequacy of the real self.

Therefore someone must lose for someone else to win or we deny ourselves what we truly want because of deep-seated, religious self-denial issues or the tragic conditioning of those who’ve come before us. I don’t believe the Universe operates this way as much as the human is conditioned to think this way. It’s embedded in the collective unconscious and is a problem best ferreted out and integrated. Appropriate giving births joy, lightness and fulfillment to all involved not guilt, shame and unworthiness. And, yes I believe giving is good but I believe receiving is equally as good. To really take in and accept what someone who loves you is offering is a true pleasure in life.

We’re all responsible for our growth, development and awakening and we’re all in this together whichever side we appear to be on, both individually and collectively. I’m a fan of responsibility and accountability, oftentimes to much so. I was reminded of this by my teachers who boldly told me that I ‘take the world to damn seriously!’. And they’re right! This is part of the problem with the Knight of Pentacles, which is the curse part of the Virgoan gift. This makes us fearful of the world and what it might deliver to our door step. Then we become the skittish horse instead of the grounded, cosmic AND earthly being that we really are.

When we’ve completed a lesson we’re free to move on because the ‘moving on’ is internal and therefore our outer world reflects this. Other than that it’s really just running away and escapism. Knowing the difference is probably termed wisdom. We can only confront something so much before it becomes a pathology and does more harm than good but if we don’t confront it and view it as the illusion that it is, it eats us up and becomes cancerous. Here we see the need for the pendulum swing and the good and the bad in life. It pushes stuff to the surface so it doesn’t fester. The growth is in the tension between whatever extremes we’re dealing with. We need to access the growth to release the tension. And we would do well to embrace tension in general because it comes with the next lesson too.

Growth frequently leads to a shift in identity. If a part of self has become more of a defense or coping mechanism it no longer serves us. To some this may seem shattering to the psyche because it’s an overworked part of self and believes it’s necessary. It doesn’t need to be if we’re willing to shed our skin and allow other parts of the self to surface. And not take ourselves or this world to seriously.

So when we see the Knight of Pentacles we know it’s time to get to work being responsible and accountable because at the end of the day it’s ourselves we need to live with. That being said lightening up, valuing who we are and our experiences and flowing with the changes will bring us the greatest rewards.

Have a great week.