I wanted to post this before we got too far away from the day - I used the Lover's Path Tarot to ask the question "What is Love?" using the Four-Fold Vision Spread.
What is Love?
This card shows Love as slow growth - a parent caring and raising a child for the sake of a future she might never see... planting a tree which might not bear fruit until long after the planter is gone. Love isn't about what you can do for me, but about me caring for you whether or not there is immediate return. Love isn't about quick fixes or a strategy to get results, but is focused on the long range benefit to the one being loved. "Love is patient".
At the core level, Love creates a situation where life's challenges are easier to handle... it is seen as a method of traveling through life in such a way that difficulties are made easier, chaos is calmed, everything feels easier because one isn't thinking solely of themselves. In this sense, I think Love is the boat - it matters less whether or not there is someone currently available on which to pour out one's love as it does that each of us can choose to journey through life in a loving way - being open to it is what carries us forward.
This is quite a bit different than how many people regard Love - they look for it, wonder when it will come to them rather than realizing have it with them always. They tell themselves that Love is more 'real' according to how intense everything is, including anger and drama and feelings of insecurity.
There is a reminder here that Love leads to a sense of calm, not created drama... it exists to make life better, not more chaotic.
Ha! Love is... Love. We see Love as the archetype of Love. Here, that archetype is firmly shown in the camp of passionate love - Isis and Osiris, who battled and overcame everything including betrayal and Death for the sake of the love between them. This is Love as warrior that will allow nothing to destroy it - Love with fierceness and great passion in it.
I don't think this is necessarily a contradiction to the 6 of Swords, though it is the grander vision that drives our daily journey.... Love doesn't let life's complications destroy it.. doesn't let the daily details come between those who love. Love personified is stronger than the life in which it lives... as long as let that boat carry us, we don't get bogged down by momentary problems.
Oh I do like this - Emotionally, Love is seen as a melding together - a blending together of those who love, so that each are uplifted and necessary and together they become something stronger than they were alone. The couple shown here is Venus and Vulcan.. possibly the most mismatched couple in myth - water and fire, beauty and brawn. By themselves, each has their own individual strengths and weaknesses... together they are able to lend strength the other lacks and operate as a balanced whole. They don't disappear into the other - each remains a unique individual while evolving together into One.
This returns to the message of the first card - Love is a generative act... its purpose is to create, whether that be creating babies or aiding the growth of the one that is love.. or through art or other forms of doing... Love isn't a feeling, it is a verb - Love manifests itself in real and concrete ways.
The reversal here is a reminder that when one loves, they are planting seeds within themselves... there is internal growth that takes place. So as we plant the seeds outwardly, knowing we might never see the results - as we travel through out lives in a way that Love carries us through our difficulties.. as we fight for the sake of Love and let nothing harm it or turn us aside from the path.. as we let Love connect us to others who can make us stronger than we can be on our own... Love grows within us, the generative qualities of Love take root within ourselves and it becomes an essential aspect of who we are.
All together the root of this reading seems to be that... to not live in such a way that one protects against love or fears it - but to live it, fullheartedly and that as we do so, it gets easier to understand why we should.