Archive for February, 2016

Transformational Tarot Moon

Transformational Moon

Transformational Tarot
Created by by Arnell Ando
Published by US Games (2006)
ISBN:1572815396

The Book says: A cycle of change; solutions to present questions can be found in the symbols of dreams and intuition rather than logic and reason. Trust your hunch; an important time for meditation. The moon rules the rhythms of life; of tides, menstruation, and other natural cycles. This card suggests that you acknowledge and respect your own natural biorhythms, moods and cycles and those of nature. The moon is metaphorically seen as the womb which both gives and takes life, so this card also stands for being sensitive to the inner knowing of when to bring something into your life as well as letting something go when the learning or spiritual process is complete. When one’s natural cycles and biorhythms are ignored or suppressed, a feeling of listlessness or even depression can emerge. Pay attention to your emotional state.

TarotBroad’s Buzz: This card sends a message of serenity and calmness as well as one of loneliness and loss. It is both peaceful and sad. The Moon’s calm, almost distant, expression brings to mind times when I felt alone and lost but looking up at the moon somehow brought a sense of peace and protection.

I hadn’t actually thought about that until now but that was my connection to the moon. I always felt as though it watched over me and protected me from harm. I love the night and revel in the darkness. It always seems so soothing and mysterious. Yet at the same time I adore the daylight hours (I just hate waking up ;-D). I was not a creature of the moon but any means. As I’ve often told friends, I do not feel the same connection to the moon which many of them experience, and yet I love the moon.

The moon is a magical, mystical protector who guides me through whatever darkness surrounds me. Maybe I see the moon as more masculine than feminine (a product of reading a lot of Norse & Irish mythology as a child). The moon cut through the blackness of the night and was a beacon of love and acceptance.  This Moon’s face might be feminine but I get that same sense of guidance and protection. She seems to be watching the empty boat to ensure that it makes it safely through the rocks. I can connect with that because heaven knows there have been moments in my life when I have felt adrift and alone but that something watches over me and protects me from ever getting truly lost. It guides me back to myself and helps me to look deep within and find my true course again. Is it The Moon? Well perhaps not the celestial body in the sky, but certainly the energy we have often associated with it.

The Moon reminds me of the song “Somewhere Out There” from the animated movie An American Tale (Tail). The Moon reminds us that we are not alone, that many others stand beneath the same moon making similar wishes and experiencing similar hopes, dreams and doubts. And maybe, just maybe, the moon helps us all work through them and move on with our lives.

Discipline and the shallow stream

I have come to realize that I resist any form of discipline – even when it’s one I believe I want. When I try to keep a journal, I find I’ll stick with it for a few days and then I grow resentful and stubborn and decide that no one is going to tell me what to do (not even me) and I stop. It’s ridiculous, immature and self-defeating. I know this. Hell, I’m calling myself on it and yet I can’t stop it.

DruidCraft 4 of Cups

This has recently forced me to ask myself why? I tend to avoid being overly introspective because . . . well read the preceding paragraph. This time I forced myself to really think about why I’m so resistant to this stuff. After a few uncomfortable fits and starts it finally clicked for me. I avoid journaling, introspection and other exercises which might force me to take a deep look at myself because I’m afraid of what I might find. I may joke about being as “deep as a shallow stream” but the reality is that I like to believe I have some depth; that there is an introspective side to me. I have a feeling that I avoid exercises that might help prove this theory because I’m equally terrified that it will disprove it. What if I am truly shallow? What if the things I consider signs of depth and introspection are simply going through the motions? There are times when I am convinced that I lack the capacity for human compassion and empathy; when I don’t understand the emotional undercurrents that drive people’s behaviors. There are times when I actually believe I have sociopathic tendencies. I wonder if my preference for well-defined boundaries and strict adherence to rules (well most rules anyway) are an effort to enforce an ethical code because I’m afraid relying on my conscience won’t cut it.

Touchstone 7 of Wands

Of course I also realize that a large amount of this fear is due to my father. I loved my father but learned early on that there was a huge screw missing. He often did things he knew were “wrong” or unethical and he did them anyway. His lack of understanding and compassion were frightening to child, especially one who was so often told how much she was like him. As I grew older as realized I didn’t quite fit in with others in the sense that I just didn’t understand their reasoning and motivations for things, I panicked a bit. I thought I was defective somehow. So I learned to compensate and hide this – or at least I tried to, I can’t say I did a very good job. Even now I just don’t understand what drives people in certain areas. I will never understand what pushes women to submit to increasingly invasive procedures in order to have a child. It’s not in my psyche because I’ve never, ever wanted children. Now at least I realize there’s nothing wrong with me or them – we just differ in this area.

Tarot of the Crone Ace of Cups

Now as this post draws to a close I’ll reveal my big discovery (which readers may have figured out already), I’m not shallow. As I was reviewing this post I realized that if I was shallow I wouldn’t worry about it. If I truly had no depth or talent for introspection then this blog wouldn’t exist. Whew! I really had myself worried for a minute there.

Mansions of the Moon Tarot Moon

Mansions of the Moon Tarot

Mansions of the Moon Tarot
ZADOK (dahogue@nctc.net)
Self-Published

The Book says: The three-faced goddess Hecate and her associations with the Moon. The Moon stands for the collective unconscious.

TarotBroad’s Buzz: Here again is an image of a guardian and a guide, but also a sentinel and protector. Hecate is the guardian of the crossroads. She may not tell you which crossroads to take but she may be willing to help you illuminate your options. The presence of Cerberus is both ominous and reassuring. He is a frightening sight to behold and yet one of his tasks is to prevent those who are not ready from entering the Underworld. Perhaps he serves the same function here. If we are not ready to face certain truths that will be revealed during this journey, Cerberus will chase us away from them. Just as Hecate will aid us in our journey – not by being sympathetic and allowing us to turn in fear, but by forcing us to face the truths we avoid and helping us learn how to handle them. She is not a warm and fuzzy type goddess but she can be benevolent and healing.

This card reminds me that sometimes we need to work in the dark, turning over rocks and facing whatever lies beneath. Hiding from the truth doesn’t change it or make it go away, it weakens us. Hecate’s torch can help illuminate some of those shadows and make the unknown just a little less fearsome. To me this card is about looking with the dark center of our heart and facing it. It’s time to do away with self-delusions and the fantasies to which we cling. Now is our opportunity to look that darkness in the face and see what is revealed. Only by going deep within ourselves can we find the truth about who we are.

Celtic Wisdom Imaginer

Celtic Wisdom Imaginer

Celtic Wisdom Tarot
Text by Caitlin Matthews, art by Olivia Raynor
Destiny Books,
1999ISBN 0-89281-720-8

The Book says: The Imaginer shows the seascape of Manannan, the Irish God of the Otherworld and of the Sea. Like Odysseus, he is courteous and cunning, a companion to our soul’s seafaring. He issues invitations to his realm to those who are worthy to seek his rich treasury. The golden-oared boat is an authentic image of the vessel used by those who made the immram or heroic voyage to the Blessed Islands of Manannan. Under the light of the moon, within the rhythm of the tides and currents, we discover our deep harmonious self.
Keywords: Imagination; latent powers; attunement to the rhythms, tides and patterns of one’s life; unconscious influences; dreams and visions; introspection; creative conception; pregnancy.
Reversed: Illusions; fear of the unfamiliar; inflexibility and impatience with natural rhythms; mental disturbance, magnification of worries and problems.

TarotBroad’s Buzz: This card speaks of the soul journey to the center of ourselves. Irish myths and legends offer several stories of heros’ voyages to a number of mystical islands before finally returning home, changed forever. Manannan also serves as the gatekeeper to the Otherworlds and he guides and guards these lands. We cannot visit these islands without Manannan’s approval. In his role and lord of the seas he also can help us cross the waters of emotional turmoil that arrive in our lives.

This card reminds us that even when we feel we are most alone in this voyage to the center of ourselves, we are not alone. Whatever one chooses to call one’s greater power it is there for us – guiding and guarding us on our journey. It is an opportunity for healing and growth, crossing over to a new level of emotional growth and introspection. The Imaginer reminds us that while the journey may take us to uncharted territory and unfamiliar places, we can safely make the journey and reap it benefits. But first we have to get passed our fear of the unknown and our worries about what is hidden along the journey.

Wheel of Change Moon

Wheel of Change Moon

Wheel of Change Tarot
created by Alexandra Gennetti
Published by Destiny Books, 1997
ISBN #0-89281-609-0

 

The Book says: When this card is a part of your reading you are experiencing a kind of foreshadowing: an intuition, suspicion, and fear of what is to come. This card signifies a time in which shadow aspects of your personality or things that are hidden in darkness are developing a life of their own. Sometimes these things are positive, creative aspects of the personality and lead to a deep appreciation of our talents and our humanity. Whatever is at work in the darkness, it is time to pay attention, as the opportunity for real growth is present. Follow the cycle of the moon and try to recognize its development from new to full and its return to full. Watch how it becomes visible in the daylight hours and use its phases to help you illuminate your own situation. The Moon card represents inner process, and these processes work well with the help of symbols; the moon’s changeability is just such a transformative process and a visual tool for growth and change.

TarotBroad’s Buzz:  To me this Moon card symbolizes the mysteries of the unconscious and the hidden aspects of the human psyche – those things we only dare to address in the darkness of the night. Very often the Moon is associated with women’s mysteries and women’s cycles. I’ve never really felt that connection myself. To me the Moon is more of a psychological card; a card that forces us to face the things that scare us deep down inside. The Moon is about the unknown and our terror of things that go bump in the night.

It has always amazed me how familiar things appear so much more threatening and fearsome in the dark. This card represents the darkness present in the human soul and our ability to do horrible things to each other. At the same time The Moon symbolizes dreams and intuition, trusting our inner voice and inner wisdom but even that can seem like a scary, alien landscape. We are so often taught that there must be a rational explanation for everything. However even if mysterious things can be explained in a rational way, that doesn’t mean it’s the only possible explanation. Look at crop circles and UFO sightings. There are rational and logical explanations for both of these phenomena but that doesn’t necessarily mean these are the only possibility.

The Moon didn’t become any less magical and mystical just because humans landed there. It is still a beacon in the night; a light which guides us through the darkness and helps us find our way. The Moon may not be able to make all the darkness and scariness disappear but its presence helps reassure us that we are not alone. I remember as a child being convinced the moon followed me home. How many people wish for the moon. The moon is the keeper of our deepest dreams, our secret desires and our hidden shames. Perhaps the moon can eventually help us realize that there is a time to face and address these desires, dreams and shames otherwise we don’t allow ourselves to transform and move to the next level. It may be a messy, frightening prospect but the moon will help guide us along the path.

Incurred obligations & reciprocity

Gebo

Today as part of my personal rune studies I was considering the rune Gebo/Gyfu. This rune represents gifts given and obligations incurred. Among other things, it can symbolize the reciprocal nature of gifts. It seems the Norse believed that a gift calls for a gift. So if one is given a gift or done a favor then you are expected to gift something of similar value or return the favor in some way (similar to the Northwest Native peoples tradition of potlatch). Thinking about the nature of reciprocity and gifts made me wonder about past gifts and how they obligate me as an adult.

I’m not referring exclusively to presents given for special occasions such as birthdays. I’m talking about other, sometimes more intangible, gifts. For example I had a teacher for third and fourth grade, Sister Esther, who made a huge impact on me. She forced to try harder as a student. I was (and still am) a lazy student. I do what I need to in order to pass the course. I regularly wait until the last minute to complete assignments (unless I’m working with partners). Luckily for me this behavior had little impact on my grades. Even when I half-assed it I received good grades. However Sister Esther refused to accept any half-assing from me. She would push me and prod me to dig deeper for answers. It’s as if she knew the I had a lazy streak and would be satisfied with doing just enough work to get by. As a result of Sister Esther’s prodding, I developed skills that allowed me to half-half-ass it. I developed note taking techniques and study techniques that allowed me to remember facts and information so that I didn’t have to study very hard in order to pass tests. I learned how to read reference papers with an eye towards ignoring extraneous and non-essential (to me anyway) data. As a results I am still able to wait until the last minute to complete assignments but they’re still well done.

Hidden Realm 6 of Pentacles

Another teacher who influenced me was a religion teacher I had in high school. His name was Mr. McCommiskey and I truly believe I made his life miserable. I had his religion in my freshman year and it was right after lunch. I was often sleepy and would nod off. To avoid nodding off I took to reading during class. This frustrated the poor man and he would regularly confiscate my books. He finally asked me why I continued to read during his class and I explained that reading kept me awake. If I wasn’t reading then I would fall asleep. As long as I wasn’t disrupting and participated in class discussions, he never bothered me about this again. I mention Mr. McCommiskey because despite our rocky moments, he taught me so much about spirituality and not accepting the “official” version of events. He was a liberation theologist (this was the early 1980s and as I look back I am truly amazed at how blessed I was by my Catholic high school education). He often pointed out facts left out of the official version of events such as that women used to officiate at early Christian masses. He once led us in replicating what an early Christian mass might have included, along with making unleavened honey oat cakes for us to try. He tried to enlighten our remarkably uninterested teenage minds to the hypocrisy and inequality in the world (he had spend a few years in El Salvador). I truly believe this man is one of the reasons my spiritual path has explored so many areas. When I met him again at a recent high school reunion I made a point to seek him out and than him. I think he might have been touched by my appreciation (even though I admitted I was no long Catholic).

Victorian Trade Card 6 of Pentacles

On a deeper and different level I thought about my parents and the gifts they gave me. Despite their dysfunction, my parents did give me the gift of life and as a result dramatically changed their own lives. They taught me to think for myself (which I’m sure they had many occasions to regret) and to fight for what I believed. They taught me that family is important (something I did not appreciate during my teen years) and should be defended. They taught me that no matter how difficult and challenging things become we shouldn’t give up. From my mother’s side of the family I learned that family doesn’t walk away when things get bad. I watched as my grandmother, her eldest brother and visiting siblings cared for their mother (my great-grandmother) who was senile and unable to care for herself. They all worked together to keep her home and cared for until she passed away. My maternal grandmother survived burying two husbands (the first when she was only about 18), her 6 month old son (also when she was 18) and raising her only daughter by herself. She refused to break. She might have bent under the weight of her responsibilities on occasion but she didn’t give up. She was stubborn and strong-willed and I adored her.

So how can I honor and reciprocate such intangible gifts? The best way I can see is paying it forward. I now tend my ailing mother-in-law because of the gift my grandmother and her family gave me about understanding family obligations and responsibilities. Did they struggle? Of course they did, but they didn’t give up. Even though I was able to thank both the teachers I mentioned that doesn’t mean I can’t pay those gifts forward too. I have nieces and nephews. By teaching them to question and seek answers I hope that I am gifting them with a lifelong curiosity that will pay back the teachers who gifted it to me. There are many more instances I could mention but I think the point has been made. In so many ways we are all blessed in our lives; we are given many tangible and intangible gifts. We should be sure not to take them for granted and to reciprocate in kind in whatever way possible, or at least that what I’m going to try.

Blue Rose Star

Blue Rose Star

Blue Rose Tarot
Created by Paula Gibby
Published by Soul Guidance

The book says: For now, each star in that vast dark canopy is also sending out threads of light, connecting with each other until there becomes a limitless glittering web extended over the entire stretch of sky. And the Fool comes to understand that these are souls that are in other stages of their journey. They represent souls that have traveled these earthly paths before and moved on, or they are waiting their turn to once again play the Great Game. And in the meantime, they look down over the souls traveling along the paths…and they send their love down to them.

And then, another vision, for now the threads from the sky above and the waters below extend towards each other…glittering sky web to shimmering watery web…until they are joined, as one. And gradually, for the first time in this new place, the Fool hears something. At first he cannot identify it, but then, almost overcome with weeping again, he realizes what he is hearing.

Millions upon millions of soft voices chanting as one. Chanting a great song of life, of existence, of love.

The miracle of the Universe lies in our infinite diversity. The blessing of the Universe lies in our infinite unity.

TarotBroad’s Buzz: To me this card symbolizes grace, beauty and hope. There is a mystery and magic about it bringing to mind a child dancing among the snowflakes of the first snowfall – happy, gleeful and awed. The dancer seems oblivious to her surroundings and is solely focused on her dance. She reminds me that even in the darkest night there is a gleam of hope and beauty to be found. She represents the wonder and amazement we feel when we stare up at the night sky and see it is dappled with glorious white stars. She is there when we wonder if there is life on other planets and when we wish and hope for something better in our lives.

The star dancer doesn’t grant these wishes for us, she glides and dances teaching us the moves we need to manifest them on our own. She is a light in the darkness, a guide light which we can follow but she cannot offer guarantees. The truth is that while we can follow the Star’s light only our own perseverance and determination can ensure whether it guides us to the place we want to go.

There is also something pure and innocent about the star dancer. She is a young child putting on a performance in their room completely unaware that grown ups are watching. Perhaps we must be careful not to startle her. Her magic may lay in the fact that she is so self-absorbed that our expectations and needs don’t impinge on her consciousness. She is able to create her magic because no one has ever told her than she cannot. She is full of potential and wonder, sure she can be or do anything she desires because of this purity and single-mindedness. Once faced with the outside world she may begin to doubt herself too but right now she is our shining beacon calling us to regain that child-like innocence and wonder. She helps us reconnect with our ability to believe in ourselves with such purity and focus. She shows us how to be shining stars in our own lives once again.

When Othala is reversed

I’ve been working with the runes lately to try to gain a deeper, more personal understanding of them (so don’t have to keep referring to the books). In the past week I’ve drawn Othala reversed three times. The first time it was paired with Perthro so I focused on how the lots cast at one’s birth, one’s orlog, worked with ancestral inheritance and home. The second two times Othala reversed was paired with Elhaz/Algiz. This puzzled me because clearly I wasn’t understanding how their energy worked together. Then as I was watching a movie it clicked – in this instance Othala reversed represents having an unsafe, dysfunctional home life and upbringing. Elhaz is often described as representing self-protection, shielding or sheltering oneself. That’s when it clicked! Elhaz and Othala reversed were telling me that when one’s childhood or home life felt unsafe then the need to feel protected and shielded grow even stronger.

In my own life I’ve seen this come into play quite clearly. My parents might have loved me but for a variety of reasons my childhood left me feeling unsafe and unprotected. This has resulted in the adult me creating very strict rules and boundaries for myself. I cannot abide hypocrisy or lying. If I find that a friend has lied about something (even if it wasn’t to me) it makes me question their integrity. For many years I viewed marital infidelity as the ultimate betrayal and tended to avoid anyone I knew who had cheated on a long-term partner (I’ve managed to become less judgmental about this but not much). I find it very difficult to separate unethical behavior from my feelings and judgments about someone. For example, if I learn that a Hollywood actor, director, etc. has engaged in a behavior that I find unethical (such as Elia Kazan betraying his friends and colleagues to the House Un-American Activities Committee), I cannot enjoy their work anymore. I will not knowingly watch an Elia Kazan movie because I find his behavior in that instance so reprehensible that I believe he deserves to be stripped of any accolades he has received. I cannot separate his work from his behavior. I have the same problem with Roman Polanski, although the woman he raped as a teen has forgiven him.

I believe I develop such an unyielding approach to these matters because ethics and morals were so malleable and porous in my childhood. I felt so unprotected and at-risk (Othala reversed) that I developed a personal security that would allow me to feel a measure of security and protection (Elhaz). Realizing how this trait developed can now enable me to relax it a bit. I’m no longer that at-risk child. I don’t need such strongly defended shield walls anymore. I’m much better able to defend myself. Seeing this pattern will hopefully help me change it where necessary moving forward and allow me to recognize similar patterns in others. I may not be able to change this behavior in others (in fact there are certainly going to be occasions where it would be dangerous to do so) but at least it helps me understand what type of situation I’m addressing.

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