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SoC: Strength by AealZX SoC: Strength by AealZX
:iconares-plz:Points for Ares~:iconares-plz:

Self-control – Being solid – Patience – Compassion
Composure – Stability – Perseverance – Moderation
Kindness – Gentleness – Slowness – Softness
Serenity – Comprehension – Discipline – Inner strength

Basic Card Symbols:
A woman man in white with a lemniscate hovering over her head, a lion Caindread. |D

Basic Tarot Story:
The Fool, victorious over his enemies, is feeling arrogant, powerful, even vengeful. There are hot passions in him, ones he finds himself unable and unwilling to control. It is in this state that he comes across a maiden struggling with a lion. Running to help, he arrives in time to see her gently but firmly shut the lion's mouth! In fact, the beast, which seemed so wild and fierce, is now completely at her command.

Amazed, the Fool asks her, "How did you do that?" One hand on the lion's mane, she answers, "I asked the lion to do it, and it did it."

"But-but-" the Fool stutters, confounded. "Why did it want to obey?" At that moment, the Maiden meets the Fool's eyes; he sees in her warmth, gentleness, a heart so great that its generosity seems as infinite as its willingness to understand. And that is when the Fool understands exactly why the lion did her bidding.

It wanted to connect to that higher energy.

Yet there is still one thing that confuses the Fool. "But," he says, much softer now, "Why would you, fair maiden, want to keep company with a beast?"

"Because he, too, is filled with a wonderful energy," the Maiden says. "It is wild and fierce, but it can be banked, like a fire in a hearth. I knew if he would take direction from me, we could both be warmed."

"So, too," she adds, "are our passions. Let them run wild and they will do damage. But we can, with gentle fortitude, check and direct those passions. In doing so, we can get so much more out of them. And yet, still sate them."

His rage quieted, the enlightened Fool walks away knowing that it wasn't only the lion that was tamed this day by a Maiden's pure and innocent strength.

Basic Tarot Meaning:
There are many stories that come to mind with this card: Daniel in the lion's den. The Aesop's fable of "The Sun and the Wind," where the Sun's warmth, as compared to the Wind's coldness, persuades a man to take off his coat. Also tales of saintly maids who get brutish barbarians to kneel down in prayer. What we see in all these stories is the taming of the beast by way of inner strength and gentleness.

The Maiden represents higher feelings and that we can experience if we bring our wild passions to heel. And so we willingly do so.

This card, however, isn't just about the Maiden's power. Like its ruling sign Leo, this card is also about the hot, roaring energy and enthusiasm of the Lion including passions like "lust" (which is the name it was given by Crowley in his Thoth deck). The lion's power may be frightening, but it is also desirable. Much can be achieved if such power is put to use. Some decks, in fact, label this card as "Power."

That energies can be brought under control and used is very close to the message of the Chariot, which might be why, in some decks, it is Justice that is card #8 instead of Strength. There is a difference, however, between Strength and the Chariot. The Chariot is a card about using your impulses to achieve a victory.

Strength is about combining two strengths to overcome weakness. The Maiden is weak of form, but her mastery of herself is powerful. The Lion is strong of form, but weak when it comes to mastering himself. The Maiden's commands overcome the Lion's weakness, and his form overcomes the Maiden's weakness. This is why the Maiden doesn't try to harness the lion to a chariot, nor does she run from it or try to kill it. She meets its eyes, touches it, embraces it. This is a card about understanding our wild natures, accepting them, yet also gentling those passions so that they work for us rather than against us. Putting these two strengths together creates perseverance, personal honor, and courage.

The card can also stand for a steadfast friend.


Alright, now that the official stuff is out of the way I'll clarify a bit more on my personal choices. |D
1. The poses: Some of the card say that the woman is portrayed holding the lion's mouth closed but also has a really gentle and serene demeanor to her. I liked this pose best from the others since it was more equal between the two. So that's why Emi's hands are on Kel's maw, but they're still bumping heads together like buddies.

2. Emi's clothes: the woman in the card is always wearing white, and I have a little fetish with dressing Emi up to look really holy and angelic even though he's part of the demon faction and I wanted to practice drawing armor. Nuff said |D

3.The Forget-me-not flowers: Since the card stands for steadfast friendship I have Emi and Kel surrounded by Forget me nots because they were Evah's favorite flower and she's the one who brought them together. I didn't want to include her as herself because Emi and Kel have grown passed needing her to hold them together.

4. The pillar: a general symbol throughout tarot cards, the pillar stands for balance. "Pillar symbol meanings are all about balance. Typically, the focal point of the card is planted staunchly betwix two towering pillars - this is a visual indication that the figurehead of this card has chosen middle-ground. When the pillars tower over our readings, it is time to consider matters of diplomacy, balance, tact, and strategy. It is a sign that going between may be more adventageous than taking the proverbial high road or low road. Rather than seeing things as left or right, black or white, perhaps we can consider a middle road - a third option with a new and different perspective." Obviously 2 pillars wouldn't fit in the composition, but I also chose 1 because of the wholeness of the idea. To put it simply and easily: the two pillar system could easily represent Caelius and Ares with Earthra being the third path, however, there is only 1 Zion and only by living together can there be balance. This is sort of emphasized by the fact that Emiris is a Caelian race while Kel is Arean.

5. the Lemniscate: "The lemniscate (also known as the infinity symbol) is a geometrical represetation of the endless and eternal nature of energy. Energy cannot be created or destroyed, it simply continues on forever in motion. The symbol meanings of this emblem serve to remind us of the infinite nature of our spirit, as well as our thoughts. When this symbol comes to our attention it may be a message that we should consider the consequences of our thoughts and deeds - the effects of which can be infinite." yeah this was a symbol included into the card always, but I just expanded on it by making the colors half and half to increase the cheesiness of it |D. For those of you who don't already know each person has their own Aura of which the color represents their core personality. Kel's is orange, and Emi's is blue.

Much thanks to those who started this little mini project and allowed me to join in, I had a lot of fun with it since I love symbolic pictures and even though I was slower than slow with it |D

Also a shout out to ~ShadowOfSolace for making the most BA yet adorable doggyman ever. Love you both to pieces. :iconallmyloveplz:
:iconsouls-of-chaos: :icondeamond89:
Kel :iconshadowofsolace:
Tarot card border :iconmifmemo:
Everything else me, :iconaealzx:, usual disclaimer
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Unmeimiru Featured By Owner Sep 16, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
so where is everyone finding all the tidbits about the tarot cards?
lub this. i wanna hug Kel too.
AealZX Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist

From those three is where I got most of my information.
ShadowOfSolace Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2012  Student Digital Artist

I cannot BELIEVE how much research went into this! Reading the backstory and associated meaning was super neat as it was coupled with the image!
I think you did a tremendous job with the updates to Kel, and I love the nuances with the flowers, and the fact he is holding Kel's maw closed-I just figure that a pritty epic trust thing.
I also love the gold border-I really think thats a neat touch with the overall colors-even if it was preset and unintentional.

Absolutely stunning beb I love the symbolism as always~<3
AealZX Featured By Owner Sep 16, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Hahahaha XDD Ah I had to do quite a bit to get an idea on what to draw, but most of it came from links others posted in the chat. So helpful. :iconsobeautifulplz:

:la: yay! you're help pics were very helpful for that. >3<b
Awww I never thought of that, it's cute too~ =3= *loves these two bunches*

Thankies~ :iconaawplz:
DarkerPersnicketer Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012  Student General Artist

pff your second point x'D
And I love the 'cheesy' Lemniscate.

You always portray Emi and Kel so well c:
AealZX Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Hahaha XD Thankies~
GoingBrinanas Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012
I really really like it! Seriously love the gentle glow!
AealZX Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Aw thanks~
Awa303 Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
You someday will achieve world domination through waves of cuteness :heart:
AealZX Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I can't decided if I would or wouldn't like that. |D
Awa303 Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Love job as always, Aeal. =3
AealZX Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thankies~ =3=
furesiya Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012
:iconshinezoomplz: turned out so goooooooooood~
very tender <33
AealZX Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
HAHAHA X'D I love that icon.
Thanks a bunch, I'm excited to see yours~:heart:
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Submitted on
September 14, 2012
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