In accordance with numerology, 2020 was to be the year of the Emperor, given that this card is number four in the Major Arcana (2 + 0 + 2 + 0 = 4). As a result, 2020 was supposed to be one of clarity, of building solid foundations, of stepping into our personal power, all energies which embody the archetype of the Emperor.
The Emperor sits upon a throne decorated with ram heads (this card represents the zodiac sign of Aries and its ruling planet, Mars). The Emperor’s beard alludes to the wisdom and experience that come with age and his crown denotes power, leadership and authority. Beneath his red robes, he wears a suit of armour, signifying both his own steely exterior and the need to protect his inner self from his external pursuits.
The Emperor rules the public realm and the material world of business and institutions and the rugged mountain range seen in the background of this card offers us an insight into his worldview; the desire to climb new heights and the determination to overcome all obstacles in order to reach the summit. The Emperor represents the patriarchy and the Divine Masculine.
We have barely begun the second quarter of the year, yet 2020 has revealed itself to be far from what many of us had anticipated. Yet despite our public lives being punctuated by social distancing and imposed isolation and businesses and infrastructure struggling to function, let alone thrive within this new paradigm, I would like to argue that there is still time to uphold that 2020 may be perceived as the year of the Emperor.
The COVID-19 pandemic is unlike anything the majority of us have ever witnessed in our lifetimes, and hopefully we won’t have to experience anything close to this for the remainder of our days. The external world, (the domain of the Emperor), has come to a grinding halt as streets stand deserted due to businesses, schools, and parks across the globe closing their doors and gates.
The internal realm is now the centre of daily life, with those fortunate enough to have retained their jobs, working remotely from their homes, whilst friends and family are staying connected via video calls. On the rare occasion that we are able to leave our homes for basic necessities such as food and exercise, we are encouraged to wear our own armour in the form of surgical face masks and latex gloves.
Interestingly, astrologers who have attempted to predict the timeline of this pandemic appear to have come to the same calculations as much of the scientific and medical community, predicting the outbreak in early January, based on the Saturn, Jupiter and Pluto transformation which will feature for much of the year before weakening in December. So, it seems that we are in this for the long haul.
Indeed, there will be many obstacles to overcome this year, however, we can embody the energies of The Emperor by arming and protecting ourselves and others through hand-washing and respecting social distancing and we can channel our drive, passion, and efforts into our daily lives, (however they may now look).
Astrologer, Susan Miller noted on her website this month that William Shakespeare, (an Aries native, naturally), wrote some of his finest works including King Lear, Antony and Cleopatra, and Macbeth during his 1605 exile due to the Bubonic plague which saw the closure of his Globe theatre. How best can you use the time you have been given?
Although it may feel like it, life has not come to a standstill, life still very much continues, albeit not on a public stage and there is the temptation to become somewhat insular during these times, especially living against such a backdrop of anxiety and uncertainty.
Remember that it is also our collective responsibility to remind those who may feel vulnerable and even invisible right now that we still see them, and that we are here for them. Indeed, we are all in this together, and if you weren’t already convinced that each of us are connected as one, then hopefully you are starting to realise this now.
2020 is the year of the Emperor and we are all being called upon to step up and accept the challenge. Are you ready?
Take care and stay safe.