Wheel of Change Empress

Wheel of Change Tarot
created by Alexandra Gennetti
Published by Destiny Books, 1997

The Book says: In the lives of women we can see five distinct phases: birth, the onset of menstruation, motherhood, menopause, and death. The Empress represents the middle of this pentad; she is the nurturing mother, who is the fertile and creative queen of the world. She is also the down-to-earth version of the cosmic World card, which also symbolizes the creative mother in the maiden-mother-crone triad of the Triple Goddess. In interpretation this card represents elemental creativity and the actualization of creation. It is birth and creativity in every realm of life. Thus it represents feminine creativity, symbolized by pregnancy and birth and by growing things: flowers, eggs, and an abundant harvest. The Empress is symbolized in every good meal and happy home; she is evident in artwork and music. When this card is a part of your reading it symbolizes love and joy in life, and in the process of creativity. It symbolizes the healthful nurturing we must put into our creative actions. It is a card of being with children and in mothering or nurturing them and the joy we feel in their independent creativity. It makes a good time to focus on projects that require creative solutions. Projects that are begun under the tutelage of the fertile Empress are likely to success, just as she bears fruit out of her own body.

TarotBroad’s Buzz: This Empress is the embodiment of fertility, fruitfulness, growth and the cycles of life. The green hills and pink tree speak to me of Spring and life just beginning to awaken while the yellow hills and fields suggest Autumn and the time of harvesting and preparing for the cold, dark times to come. The Empress reminds us that she rules over both these cycles. She nurtures us and supports us through the good times and the bad. Her breasts provide nourishment and her body is the source of new life and new growth.

The Moon overhead reminds us of the connection many peoples see between the Moon and women. The eggs in her basket remind us of the potential for new life and the waters dividing around her reinforce its connection as the source of life on Earth. This card speaks of the bounty offered to us in our lives as well as reminding us that there are cycles that we all follow. And we are all connected to the Earth, the waters and the stars. She is the mother of us all. If we honor and embody these traits we will find the way to bring these energies into our own lives; to enhance our fruitfulness, prosperity, creativity and nurturing.

This card is not just about nurturing others but about embracing and nurturing ourselves as well. When I see this card it reminds me of the wonder I feel when I look at mountains and lakes as I drive passed. I am awed by their beauty and majesty and feel the connection to Mother Earth. I want to honor her and allow myself to fall into her embrace, knowing that I am safe, protected and loved. As someone who has often lacked this type of nurturing in my life, I sometimes have difficulties connecting to this card. I do not see myself as an Empress (at least not in the traditional way of being a mother). But then I realize that this card is also about nurturing the creative energies of others and helping them to grow. It is about nurturing my own creative side and allowing myself to explore alternative outlets for this creative energy.

Many people believe there is a Great Mother in the Universe and whether you honor her as Mary, Queen of Heaven, the Corn Mother, the Lady or as Danu, she represents the same type of energy and nurturing support in our lives. The Empress is seen every day in the bounty of the Earth and the gifts she offers us. The Empress nourishes everything and everyone around us.  This makes it easier for me to connect with this card. It is not just physical motherhood but spiritual motherhood as well. Being able to offer our bountiful gifts to ourselves and others and being able to accept the gifts others offer to us.

Celtic Wisdom The Shaper

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

The Book says: The Shaper of Growth gives life to all that is. The Mothers maintain the fertility of the land, the life of its animals and people, and were often venerated as the guardians of the land’s sovereignty. They maintain their loving watch over all life, transmuting the Soul from death into life. The Mothers are the midwives of the Soul, nurturing it with qualities that enable it to respond to the good things of life. They also imbue the Soul with its instinct or mother-wit, the basic common sense by which we are protected and sustained.
Keywords: Abundance, wealth, fulfillment, reverence for the earth, motherhood, fertility, loving guardianship, value, house, health, harmony and wholeness, emotional growth.
Reversed: Infertility, poverty, delay in accomplishment, squandering of resources, laziness, inaction, emotionally immature, self-neglect.
Soul-Wisdom: The Shaper of Growth gives life to all that is. The Mothers are the midwives of the Soul, nurturing it with qualities that enable it to respond to the good things of life. They also imbue the Soul with its instinct of mother-wit, the basic common sense by which we are protected and sustained. What spiritual nurture is your Soul seeking now?

TarotBroad’s Buzz: This card represents the gifts we are offered from the Earth, the blessings we receive from friends and family and the bounty offered all around us. The Shaper is the source of all of these things. She is the one grants us her blessings and allows us to bloom and flower under her beneficent gaze. She not only offers us her blessings and her abundant gifts, but she reminds us that we need to share them will all things who share the Earth with us. Her gifts are not just for people, but for animals, plants and other inhabitants of the planet. By her nature she also symbolizes the cycles of life. As well as life, she helps the Soul pass into death. Along with abundance and prosperity, there are cycles of scarcity and want. But the Shaper reminds us the these times are a nature part of life’s cycle. They don’t indicate a loss of nurturance or caring. The Shaper’s abundance and fruitfulness bring us her blessings and bounty. But if we hoard these things and don’t share them with those around us, then we denigrate her gifts. They should be shared, enjoyed and appreciated; not hoarded and hidden so that others won’t take them from us. If we hide these gifts from ourselves or from others, then we are not honoring the Shaper and don’t truly understand her gifts. And if we don’t use them, we risk losing them. And once again we are reminded that these gifts may not be of a physical nature. If we have creative gifts that we hide from the world, then we are not honoring our creative spirit – a writer who doesn’t write (even if it is never published) is a sad thing indeed. Take time today to honor the gifts of the Shaper – both the physical and the spiritual ones.

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