Angel of the Crossroads, hand-cut collage with mixed media, 14 x 14 in
“He that has a choice has trouble.” *Dutch Proverb
“It is difficult to make the right choice if you fear choosing wrongly.”
Clearly, there isn’t time to follow up on every idea. So, I have to decide which ones are most likely to pan out, to lead me further into the development of my authentic voice. Since I don’t have the ability to see into the future, I have to trust my intuition.
Simple, right? Sure, unless you fear making the wrong decision. Unless you don’t always have confidence in your own judgement, unless you’ve made choices in the past that you now regret… in other words, unless you’re human.
“We have to get used to the idea that at the most important crossroads in our life there are no signs.” – Ernest Hemingway.
Country Crossroads in July, Charles Burchfield
The Three Fates, from The Sandman, episode 2
Legends and Lore
Perhaps the most famous crossroads legend in recent times is that of blues guitarist Robert Johnson (1911-1938). He is said to have sold his soul to the devil in exchange for his sudden amazing mastery of the guitar. A 1986 film (referenced above) tells his story.
In many native North and South American cultures, crossroads were seen as sacred places of great spiritual power. They were liminal spaces, doorways to hidden supernatural realms. In Celtic, Greek, Mayan, and African religions (just to name a few), they were thought to be guarded or inhabited by special spirits or dieties. Some of the dieties were helpful, while others were tricksters, seeking to confuse travelers who were trying to find their way.
“Crossroads always signify choice. Choices can be scary, but they are also liberating. The funny thing about crossroads is they represent both all things unknown and 100% pure potential.” ~Avia
Coincidentally, I was watching the new Netflix series The Sandman last night, when crossroads lore happened to figure prominently in the plot. Morpheus, the god of dreams, has been imprisoned, and his tools stolen from him. Finally free, he goes to the crossroads to seek help in finding them from Hecate, the triple goddess also known as the three Fates. I couldn’t find a picture of the crossroads, but I did find a still of Hecate, and she’s plenty scary!
References and Further Reading
- Crossroads in Irish Folklore, Silent Owl
- The Crossroads: A Liminal Setting for Occult and Supernatural Activities, Owlcations
- The Symbolism of Crossroads, Slap Happy Larry
- Symbolic Meaning of Crossroads, Avia
“When you’re on the crossroads and gone down the wrong path in life, there’s no harm in turning around and walking the other way.” ~ unknown
Fly Away v2
So, is there a way to insure that you’re making the best decisions? In all honesty, I don’t think we can ever be completely sure. All we can do is make our best guess based on a combination of the available information and our own intuition. I think it’s also crucial to avoid the idea that there’s only one right choice.
Fly Away v1
“When you are standing at a crossroads in your life, realize that the greatest block that you can put in front of your Self is the idea that there is a right choice.” ~ Story Waters
Fly Away v3
Contemplation of Consequence
And if you do make a choice that doesn’t work out, you’ll hopefully learn something from it that will make the next one easier. The most important thing is not to let fear paralyze you into taking the safe, familiar road.
That’s it for now, but I have more new finished work to share, and I’ll be sure to show you what new roads I decide to go down. I hope you’ll journey with me.
In the meantime, I wish you peace, love, and art…