“No, I wanted to say, he didn’t cut off her hands because he didn’t have to, he had cut them off long before, with years of keeping all authority in his own palms, all the rules and all the power and all the answers emanating from him and no one else. And if you don’t understand that, if you’ve never been in such a family, then you can’t know the way the mind shackles itself and amputates its own limbs so adeptly that you never think to miss them, never think that you had anything so obscene as choice.”
~ Carolina De Robertis
An Inuit goddess of the sea, its depths and supplies and of Adlivun, the Underworld. She is also called Arnakuagsak or Arnaqquassaaq, Satsuma Arnaa (Mother of the Deep), Nuliajuk, Arnapkapfaaluk (Big Bad Woman), Nerrivik (Table) and Takánakapsâluk or Takannaaluk.
The myth about Sedna has various versions but the common topic is cutting her hands off which turned into fish and other marine animals. According to one of the legends Sedna was a giant, daughter of Anguta, the Creator of the world, whose appetite was so huge that she threw herself at her parents. Angered Anguta took her to the sea, pushed out of his kayak and cut her hands off when she wanted to climb back. Her big fingers then changed into seals, whales and fish which the Inuit haunt for.
The most popular version of the myth presents Sedna as exceptionally beautiful girl who rejects candidates to marriage from her village one after another in the hope of meeting someone much better. She finally agrees to marry an unknown hunter who promises her life in abundance. The hunter takes her to a distant island where he drops his disguise and turns out to be the king of birds. He does not provide her life in comfort as he promised and Sedna calls for her father’s help. He arrives while her husband is absent and runs away with his daughteer to his kayak. Meanwhile the king returns and gets angry when he realises that his wife escaped so he flies after the fugitives with a flock of birds and attacks them. Sedna’s father is so scared that waves caused by the wind from the birds’ wings will overturn the kayak that he throws his daughter overboard. He knows that Sedna is what her husband wants (in another version he kills the king and the birds attack to revenge him). When Sedna is trying to climb back, her father chops her fingers off and a helpless girl sinks to the bottom. However, it turns out that she does not drown but becomes a goddess instead and her cut off fingers turn into whales, seals, walruses, fish and other marine creatures which are the Inuit’s main source of food. If Sedna gets angry, she does not allow fauna to emerge to the surface and hunters come back to their villages with nothing to eat. Then shaman travels to the sea depths to comb her hair and plait braids asking for forgiveness (being handless she is not capable to do it herself). This is why Sedna is considered to be to be rather a vindictive and sinister goddess.
Other versions of this legend says that Sedna, unsatisfied with the suitors presented by her father, eventually decides to marry a dog. This makes her father so furious that he throws her into the sea and when she is clinging to the kayak, he chops her fingers off. Another version says that Sedna rejects all the wooers until a new unknown hunter comes to the village. Her father makes a secret agreement with him and promises to give him his daughter as a wife in exchange for fish. Then he gives Sedna a sleeping potion and let the hunter take her away with him. When she wakes up, she finds out that she is in a nest on a cliff and the hunter is in fact a great raven who disguised himself in a human form. It is not until that moment when her father hurries to rescue her but he gives up when the birds cause a sea storm. He throws his daughter into the water and when she is trying to climb back, her fingers freeze and fall off turning into sea animals. Sedna herself falls down to the bottom and changes into a mermaid with a fish tail instead of legs. In the region of Netsilik there is yet another version of the myth; in this story a maltreated orphan named Nuliayuk becomes the target of her fellow villagers. They are trying to drown her in the sea by cutting her fingers off but their plan fails when the amputee parts of her body change into fauna. Nuliayuk marries a fish and becomes the ruler of all the marine creatures.
A celestial object circulating around the Sun in an orbit beyond the trajectory of Neptune was called after the goddess.
IMAGES, SYMBOLS AND ANIMALS
Here is a couple of images presenting Sedna in the original sculptures carved by the Inuit:
A person who has experienced a lot of bad things in life. A person with unsolved personal problems. Someone who pushes problems and fears down into unconsciousness. A person shown by this card is shy and silent, keeps oneself to oneself and tries not to cause troubles nor to attract attention but inside is often consumed by emotions.
Wife or (adult) child of an alcoholic. An archetype of a woman who escaped from an unhealthy family into equally unhealthy marriage. Women are naturally exposed to this behavioral pattern because they tend to search fulfillment through the contacts with other people. They often end up disappointed when they give a lot and receive little or nothing in return. Women are capable of selling their souls just for a substitute of feelings.
A person with the mentality of a grown up child who either cannot or is afraid to reveal their true feelings. Someone who escapes from responsability and adulthood. Someone who refuses to accept the rule ‘what goes around comes around’. Someone who wooes for the love of others. An ivy type of personality wrapping around a stronger partner in the hope for resolving their own emotional problems. Someone who does not have healthy patterns of personality and relationships. A person who does not act spontaneously but rather wears different masks (usually because of previous life experiences).
The card of Sedna represents a person who has a victim pattern of personality and hurts other people not by physical beating but by passive aggression: emotional blackmail, killing somebody with kindness, interferring into somebody else’s life, putting pressure on others, living the lives of other people, not their own etc. This form of aggression is neglected in our culture but it is equally harmful as physical beating or most likely it may be even more dangerous because it is in fact hidden (we might be even unaware that we are the victims of aggression and come to belief that we are the source of problems ourselves because we do not appreciate enough the efforts and feel guilty) and it hits under disguise of love (‘I do it because I care for you!’).
This type of aggression is commonly practiced by women (especially mothers and granmothers who have low self – esteem) because physical violence was restricted for men and women were not supposed to show their anger. However, hidden anger does not disappear, it simply is released in another, more indirect way. People with victim patterns may seem very good, harmless, tender and caring on the outside (they do all the housework duties, engage themselves in charity or local organisations etc.), however they have tendency to search for attention, control and manipulate the environment with words and emotions. They often say, I sacrifice so much for family, I cook, clean, go shopping, carry bags with groceries, but nobody helps me! You are so insensitive, I’ll have health problems because of you! (complaining and emotional blackmail). In reality they exaggerate to get the attention because a lot of the household work they do is unnecessary or could be done less often. But what the person unconsciously wants is the family members to feel sorry for her/him and make them feel guilty that they neglect her/him (at least in his/her opinion).
The person does not respect even the clearly expressed boundaries and thinks s/he can cross them just because s/he knows better what is good. A typical example: a grandma asks her grandchild, ‘Are you hungry?’. ‘No, thank you’, answers the child who is occupied with playing. ‘But maybe you’ll have a peanut butter sandwich?’, grandma keeeps asking. ‘No, I’m not hungry’, the child is a bit tired of repeating but still is polite and keeps playing. ‘I’m making pancakes, do you want some?’, grandma refuses to give up. ‘Noooo, thank youuuu!’, the child loses their temper and screams. Silence. After a while grandma comes with a soup. ‘Eat while it’s still hot’, she says.
Such kind of behaviour causes the loss of energy in the bodies of family members. For those of you who work with energies: such passive aggression sucks energy out of the base chakra which is responsible for health and correct functioning of the organism. Energetical attacks cover the base chakra like a spider net and poisons it with negative vibes. People who live with the person with victim patterns who is also an energy vampire may feel constant fatigue, low self-esteem, lack of life energy, decrease of optimism, significant weight loss or gain, lost of interest in the things which used to be enoyable (including sex), inability to finish things, inability to self-organize, feeling of slowing down, problems with concentration, memory and sleep, etc. It is happening because this person emits negative, “sticky” energy which wraps around the base chakra and blocks any positive energy flow. It causes problems with existence in the world of matter which usually results in troubles with finding or keeping the job, financial or health problems and, in the extreme cases, depression and suicidal thoughts. No one can feel stable and healthy if their base chakra does not work properly. Sometimes very determined people fight hard not to give up to depressive mood and to achieve their goals but it costs them much more energy than the people who have healthy patterns and support of family and friends. The longer we live with the person who attacks us with passive aggression, the weaker and more vulnerable we become. These attacks may not seem harmful at the beginning but they limit any behaviours of family membrs which seem out of ordinary or do not comply with the energy vampire’s rules. In the end we lose our energy so much that we think we are too weak to change the situation. We are becoming the victims of victims.
When somebody beats you, you realize this is a bad thing (even if you blame yourself for starting, provoking etc) but nobody realizes how harmful passive aggression is and how common it is in the behaviour of people who have usually been the victims of abuse themselves. They are often old, ailing and experienced by life with an alcoholic or within an alcoholic family. How can you accuse me of hurting others when I’ve been through so much in my life?!, they would ask. But they do it because of their subconscious need to “win back” by dominating, imposing their opinions, accusing, demanding and requiring.
This behaviour has the most harmful effect on children. At this stage of their development they are not yet capable of distinguishing who and what is right or wrong and they trust whatever they close relatives say. If they say, ‘You are not capable of doing it, you are hopeless’, they will believe it. Many of those people who cannot find their place in life or think they are inable to cope with life and feel they do not really ‘fit’ the world, have been deprived of support and respect of their family. Children are particularly vulnerable because they do not expect any forms of aggression from the closest people. Body is not prepared for beating or emotional abuse so child’s fear and trauma literary hide inside it sooner or later causing health problems. Physical or emotional abuse comes as a shock to them and leaves them confused. If they cannot trust their parents, then whom can they trust?
Children are naturally sensitive and receptive. For them everything is safe (including boiling water and an abusive parents) so they lose more than an adult while contacting aggressive people. They often hide in the shells and limit contacts with the outside world but their fear, anger and helplessness do not cease to exist. Children from dysfunctional families have a distorted feeling of saftety, problems with expressing emotions and tendencies to wear masks throughout their lives because they could not count for mature reactions of their parents to their behaviour and have become unnaturally cautious. They are too hard on themselves and have very low self-esteem, they are also unable to escape themselves from an unhealthy family because they are dependant on their parents. If an external body (school, hospital, social service workers) does not notice the problem, the child may live in a dysfunctional family for years and become permanently marked by living in a distorted, loveless world. It is the only reality s/he knows. These damages in their psyche are not visible but they severly influence later life. They cannot disappear just like that, however therapy proves to bring significant improvement.
The only cure to both a victim and an aggressor is to be aware, to work daily with your attitude and to develop your personality.
IMPORTANT: NOT ONLY THE ALCOHOLIC FAMILIES ARE INVOLVED IN VIOLENCE! In fact many “decent” families are affected by abuse. It may be even harder for children to ask for help because unlike in alcoholic families abuse is hidden and outside everything seems to work fine. An abusive parent may be a respected laywer or doctor and a child is convinced that nobody would believe them if they told the truth about physical or emotional aggression. Regardless of its material status and level of education a family with children is aimed at preparing them to cope with life. The attention should be paid especially to physical and emotional health and providing with healthy relationship patterns and methods of resolving problems. In a properly functioning family a child is given boundaries but also loved unconditionally. It is not hurt, humiliated, beaten, laughed at and expected to gain parents’ love by achieving certain goals nor behaving in a desirable way. If family does not act in this manner, it is a dysfunctional family.
This card has „a misfortune” of bringing hidden patterns, traumatic memories and everything we would rather forget about out of our subconsciousness. It reveals wounds, victim patterns and how a previously abused victim starts abusing others.
No matter whether you are abused or abuser, this card suggests you to stop immediately. This literary is last call before something tragical happens.
The card of Sedna also shows that your inability to cope with the situation you are inquiring about comes from wrong patterns encoded in your unconsciousness. We use a conscious part of our personality on a daily basis, i.e. our mind, logics, religious and cultural rules etc. We perceive ouselves the way we want to be perceived. Meanwhile our subconsciousness is a mighty force which we can try to deaden but we are not able to shape from the outside. Our codes, behavioral patterns, blockades, inner limitations, halfhearted efforts, primal experiences which we do not even have to remember are all stored in our subconsciousness. Even if our consciousness has some plans, subconsciousness may thwart them. No matter how much we want something to happen, we are not able to make it come true. Subconsciousness offers us old solutions basing on previous experiences. We usually do not even realise nor understand it and since we are unaware of that, we keep making the same mistakes as if we were in a viscious circle. With an untamed subconsciousness we are not capable to solve our life problems because it constantly sends us conflicting signals, twarts the effort of consciousness and blocks our development. Whatever we want to do, we have to remove the blockades from our subconsciousness.
Let me explain it using computer science language: subconsciousness is a hard drive and a database used by consciousness to extract behavioral patterns and solutions when we face a problem. Every computer scientist knows that if your PC/laptop does not have a solid motherboard with a good memory and a fast processor then its system will keep hanging. Even if we want to achieve something very much, blocked unconsciousness will thwart our plans and we will even explain rationally why we failed yet another time. If you repeteadly lack fulfillment in a certain area of your life then you have to “tame” uncosciousness the same way as you exchange motherboard when the system is malfunctioning. Every computer scientist knows how serious change it is for a PC/laptop.
Remember that your subconscious like a hard drive is a huge database gathering information from your earliest times. Data is stored there regardless of its truthfulness or who enter it to the memory, be it you or your family, teachers, religious leaders, friends, colleagues etc. This data may of course be contradictory (and usually it is) so before you decide to print it (i.e.to act), you have to correct the document. Otherwise when you have it printed, all you get will be the number of unreadable characters who nobody will be able to decode.
To organise subconsciousness sometimes all you have to do is to uninstall unnecessary programmes which take too much space and slow down the system but sometimes the mess is so big that there is no other option than to format C. Organising your subconsciousness certainly requires self – work, recognising your emotions, constant observation of your thoughts and actions, regular update of data concerning yourself and your environment, capturing negative thoughts with your inner antivirus programme, permanent affirming, participating in a therapy or a support group etc. And most of all it requires a very good security system to protect your inner personal computer from hakers who want to get in and take advantage of it.
You can also leave your disc uncleaned and remain with the mentality of a victim. You can search for the acceptance of others, chase after a substitute of real feelings and expect others to feel sorry for you. But this means you refuse to get out of this mental and emotional swamp. Do not excuse yourself. Excuses may improve your mood but will not help you move forward. Self-excuses and complaining set you in the position of a victim. Everyone has pity and feels sorry for a victim but remaining in this state unables acting effectively. Women are the world champions of self – excusing and self-justifying.
Even if you are characterised by the card of Sedna, it does not mean that you have to remain like this. I highly recommend reading Women Who Run With The Wolves by dr Clarissa Pinkola Estes, especially a very similar Inuit story of Skeleton – Woman, Handless Maiden, La Llorona and Ugly Duckling. Sedna’s hands, her main tools of acting, were cut off therefore she was doomed to be helpless but it does not have to be an ultimate and irreversible action. Love, respect, acceptance and care can make hands grow back.
If you are in the relationship: Solitude in a relationship. Think over whether being with your partner makes you feel happy and fulfilled. If you want to have a child, analyse carefully whether your current partner is the right person to become a parent. Do not forget that a child binds two people more than any vows. Also consider whether you are really mentally and emotionally mature to become a parent. If you want to have a child primairly to have someone to love then it means you are not.
If you are single: The reason of your solitude is probably a wrong pattern of human relations. Even though you have a great need of loving, either you are escaping from engaging deeper into an union or you seek for an attention of a partner. Perhaps you keep choosing the same type of a partner who limits and smothers you instead of making you bloom. You should work on your psyche first before you decide to enter a serious relationship.
Getting out of trouble. Unexpected financial solutions. Sudden flow of money. Decision of granting a credit.
Surgery. Amputation. Staying in a hospital. Check your circulatory system (it is worth to consult with a doctor whether you should have Doppler ultrasound done). Endangered parts of the body: blood and lymphatic vessels.
Sedna in The Goddess Oracle by Hrana Janto&Amy Sophia Marashinsky
Sedna in The Goddess Oracle Deck by Thalia Took
Sedna in The Goddesses Knowledge Cards by Susan Seddon Boulet&Michael Babcock
Sedna in Goddess Guidance Oracle Cards by Doreen Virtue (I have already expressed what I think about this image here)
Based on English Wikipedia, http://swiatducha.wordpress.com/2010/11/01/atak-na-podstawie-wzorcow-ofiary , http://swiatducha.wordpress.com/2012/08/12/ofiary-zatrucia-od-wejscia , http://swiatducha.wordpress.com/2009/01/24/ofiary.