Strength, you must acknowledge the existence of a power within you which embodies great strength but which also seems to have a mind and desires of its own. We must deal with an ambivalent inner force which can help us but which also has the potential for great harm if we don’t harness it properly, the camera zooms in, as it were on this wild energy and shows it as a tiger which has been mastered by a woman, here we have succumbed to it to the point where it is now the master and we are the slave. In biochemical terms, the tiger would represent adrenaline, a hormone which increases heart rate and blood pressure, triggered by mental or physical stress. This helps us deal with crisis situations by putting the body in a “fight or flight” mode, where it can perform feats it would normally be incapable of. The end result may be fortunate or unfortunate, depending on the circumstances. In one-case, you might find yourself lifting the front end of a car into the air to rescue someone trapped underneath. In another case, you might find yourself physically attacking someone simply because you’re angry at them. It’s important to understand that the inner tiger doesn’t make a moral distinction between these two situations. That’s why we have a counterbalancing element in our psyches – the woman on the card, who controls the tiger (as shown by the chain which encircles it) and is able to use its energy constructively, while keeping it reigned in when appropriate. Balance is a key issue when dealing with the energies shown with the Strength. If we let the tiger have its way, there will obviously be many unfortunate out comes, on the other hand, if we keep our tiger always bottled up, then we become ineffective, who will always wonder what would have happened had we taken the risky step. The woman on the card is a great beauty, self-possession, and strength of diameter. She is adorned with stars and bears on her lace the elemental sign of Fire. The moon hanging from her ear suggests she controls the tiger from her intuitive center. We should try to avoid seeing the woman as a school mistress type who is always preventing us from having any fun. She is not simply a negative presence. In fact she is a powerful figure, as she would have to be in order to be able to dictate terms to a tiger. She dominates the tiger not by brute strength, but by intelligence, sympathy, and love, and provides a calming influence to smooth the beast’s rough edges.