The cheetah is probably best known for it’s speed. They can reach highs of 75mph but it’s the acceleration that really shows off their skills – they can go from 0 to 60mph in just 3 seconds. They are nimble runners with a flexible spine which both pushes them forward and allows them to turn at high speeds. They have tyre like tread on their paws for traction, use their tail like a rudder to help them turn and have a huge heart to pump oxygen through their body. There is no denying that the cheetah really is the king of speed. There is a great video showing how the cheetah uses it’s body when running from National Geographic.
However, they are short distance runners, unlike their prey, the gazelle which is in for the marathon. To make the most of their ability, they need to use their good eyesight to spot prey from a distance and then get close enough to unleash their speed.
They hunt in the day and their spots help them to camouflage in high, dry grasses. Once they have silently stalked up to their prey, they then need to take a calculated risk, is this kill worth the energy needed to try? If it is, then the next step involves precise timing. They aren’t built to fight so speed really is the key to their survival.
This card really is shouting at you about movement and energy and going for it. But also, doing the maths, is this something you really really want? If so, do it. If not, maybe hold back and use the energy when that thing does come along.
Did you know that cheetahs can’t roar? They can however purr! Perhaps this is a cue to look at how you are communicating. You catch more flies with honey than vinegar after all…
In terms of the sexes, the females are fiercely independent and don’t get along with other females. They generally would only be around other cheetahs for mating or raising their babies. Males on the other hand form a coalition, that is a group of males, who provide companionship. It is also easier to hold your territory as a group, there is safety in numbers and they work together to hunt. Who’s behaviour are you channelling at the moment?
As is obvious from the image on the card, this cat is closely associated with the sun. It is most active during the day and has the power and energy which is associated with the sun. Symbolically the sun is about illumination (duh!), vigour, life, warmth, confidence and brilliance. We’ve seen a lot of strong moon cards so far which is great but now is the time to look to the sun instead. I think it’s also interesting to compare the sun in the cheetah card with the sun in the gazelle.
There are a number of different stories to explain how the cheetah got it’s spots and how it got it’s black tear stains on it’s cheeks. One sad tale explains that the mother cheetah had cried black tears of grief for her lost baby and they stained her face forever. Regardless of which version you prefer, it’s clear that the cheetah has captured human imagination throughout it’s range.
Wild Unknown Tarot
Is this magnificent magician a cheetah? I think so but I’ll leave you to decide… As always, check out Carrie Mallon’s website for more info!