the hanged man

letting go / perspective / sacrifice //

today i am thinking about dionysus, because my brain insists on classifying him as a god-who-was-hanged, though i can find no supporting evidence of this. (the closest i found is that some think the etymology of the name has to do with trees, and that this “leads itself” to thinking dionysus hung from one. as evidence goes, it’s flimsy at best.)

which is not to say that dionysus is not a good figure to think about in conjunction with the hanged man. it’s a card about choosing a new perspective, and what easier way to do that then with intoxicants?

i hesitate to write that, though, because i know it’s not true for everyone. i have used drugs - mostly legal - as a form of mysticism, and i have at times lost myself in them, but i have always come out the other side.

we are, all of us, products of our genetics and our environments and our families.

(side note: look! it’s such a dionysian card, this fey person of indeterminate gender hanging from the trellis covered with grape leaves!)

as for me, i was a child obsessed with the greek gods, reading about them over and over in my children’s encyclopedia set. athena was my favorite then, a match for the bookish girl i was, but dionysus is the one whose story i have come back to again and again.

i’ve done it slantwise, though, with a focus on the women dionysus surrounded himself with: ariadne and the maenads. ariadne is, perhaps, a better figure to talk about in conjunction with the hanged man, as some myths have her hanging herself after her marriage to dionysus. in my story, she chooses this, having gained the realization that she had been taken advantage of; being a god, she does not die of it.

today’s newsletter is meandering, i know, but that too seems fitting, as the labyrinth that became the prison for ariadne’s half-brother the minotaur was originally designed as her dancing ground. (the labyrinth tattoo that ariadne has in my story is, of course, based on the labyrinth tattoo above my own ankle.)

this week, darlings, have faith that even if you are lost right now, you will be found again.


this week’s deck: dreaming way tarot
this week’s crystal: amethyst