Sacred Sites: Five of Pentacles

Five of Pentacles
Sacred Site – The Labyrinth at Knossos, Crete.

In Greek mythology, the Labyrinth was constructed by Daedalus for King Minos of Crete. Its function was to hold the Minotaur who was later killed by the hero Theseus. Daedalus had so cunningly made the Labyrinth that he could barely escape it after he built it.

The story goes that King Minos attacked Athens to avenge his son, Androgeus who died in a completely different story. Rather than be totally annihilated, Athens (the city, not a person), said they would pay a terrible price and so every nine years they gave a tribute of seven boys and seven maidens to be shipped to Crete, to be offered as food to the savage Minotaur that King Minos kept as a pet in the Labyrinth.

I’m just going to sidetrack a little here, just in case you don’t know, the Minotaur is a monster with a bull’s head and a man’s body. When Minos took the throne of Crete he wanted to deter any challenges to his rule, so he prayed to Poseidon. The very next day a bull emerged from the sea with a sign around its neck that read: “sacrifice me and all will be well”. Things never ever go quite the way you expect and it happens that this bull was truly beautiful and perfect, so Minos decided to keep this bull and sacrifice another one because, hey! What could possibly go wrong. Poseidon, miffed that his gift wasn’t being used in the way intended, used his godlike powers on Minos’ wife, Pasiphaë to fall in love with the bull so deeply that… she had sex with the bull 😮 and conceived the monstrous Minotaur. Who says gods don’t have a wicked sense of humour.

Back to the tributes. Theseus who had just been hailed as a hero and all round nice guy (again, another story), catching the scent of a bit more heroism, decided that he would like to be a part of this tribute thing and boards the ship. On arrival at Crete after an adventure getting there (yep, another story), Minos daughter, Ariadne sees Theseus and says to herself, “ό, τι ένας άντρας, I wouldn’t say no to bit of that” and falls instantly in love. She rushes off to Daedalus (who designed the Labyrinth), and asks how she can help Theseus escape the Labyrinth once he’s done the heroic bit and killed the Minotaur, (technically, her stepbrother?¿!), so Daedalus gave her a spool of thread. Off into the Maze go Theseus and the thirteen Athenians, our hero had obviously tied one end of the thread to the doorway. He bravely battled the Minotaur, in some stories with his bare hands (what a guy), and in others with a sword that he smuggled in with him :/  Yay!

Theseus and Ariadne don’t live happily ever after though, but guess what, that’s another story 🙂

Keywords: Need, poverty, adaption.

Possible deck specific interpretations: So life is a bit of a mess (financially), don’t get lost in the trivial details, concentrate on getting yourself out of this predicament.

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Despite the terrible fake moustache, this really is a great documentary.

Spike handwritten