It's Friday at last and today's card from Legend: Arthurian Tarot is 8 of Swords, Guenevere at the Stake. Of course the first thing I notice is that she isn't surrounded by swords, but at least there is an inset showing eight swords, so that's better than nothing. Why is Guenevere being chained to the stake? Because in the medieval mind, for a queen to commit adultery was considered treason and punishable by death. Treason, for a marital infidelity. The person of the king was the very land and nation itself, and if his body were betrayed, the land and nation was betrayed. So, though Arthur did his best to overlook and keep secret his knowledge of Lancelot and Guenevere's affair, once it was made public the matter was out of his hands (apparently). Ferguson in her companion book blames this situation on the 'new religion' (clearly she's been influenced by 'Mists of Avalon'!) Lancelot and a band of his men hack their way to free Guenevere, but of course when he cuts down so many of his fellows of the Round Table, bitter blood feuds bent of revenge are started, and the whole fellowship falls apart, leading to the downfall of Camelot.
But anyway, the card itself usually means feeling trapped in a situation in which you are not really trapped. That would not seem to be the case here, because Guenevere is in fact trapped and bound and about to die. However...why is she about to die? She's being bound and trapped by a LAW, by an abstraction, by concepts, and those are not real, they exist only in the minds of men, and are only real for as long as enough people agree to keep believing them or upholding them. So in a way, she is trapped but not trapped. She is dying for nothing, really. No one deserves to die for what she did. (And it's my belief, that while some people might deserve to die for certain crimes, no one has the right to take another person's life, regardless of how much they deserve to die. But that's a thought for another post.)
I'm a bit trapped at the moment because I find myself caught up in an area of my work where I am unsure how to proceed, so until I get the right information, my hands are tied. I don't want to carry on with it until I find out the right answer, because if I've got it wrong, there will be less for me to undo and put right. However, like the figures in the traditional card, I can easily slip this temporary trap, and even more like Guenevere in this card, I will be rescued from this situation by an outside force (who knows the answer).
That's good news for a Friday. :)