The fact that I’m feeling so overwhelmed and burdened by responsibilities is causing me to let things slip through the cracks. I have an opportunity to reignite my spark but I have to take it. With all the obligations I’m burdened with right now I feel as though I don’t have the right to take time for myself but these cards are telling me that I need to change that perception.
If I want to create a better relationship with my spirit guides then I need to stop letting my responsibilities be an excuse and just do something. It doesn’t need to be elaborate. I think it’s a question of taking 10 minutes or so every day and just being more mindful and open to connecting with the spirit world. Right now I feel like a rat trapped in a barrel – I’m running in circles, using up all my energy and getting no where. I’m exhausted, drained and defeated. The only way I know to counter-act this is to take some time for myself; to be still and listen.
This isn’t exactly mind-blowing news. I know the answer and realize the Tarot is reinforcing what I already knew but have been avoiding. Small steps, baby steps – that’s all it takes. I don’t need to reach the goal line in a week. I didn’t get to this point in my life overnight so why I think the solution should be a quick fix is beyond me. To paraphrase Robin Byrd, I need to lie back, relax and get comfortable – at least for a few minutes every day.
The 7 of Air shows the coins of the I-Ching, an ancient Chinese oracle. I’m familiar with it although I’ve never used it. In the companion book Barbara explains that the Yin-Yang energy of the I-Ching should be the focus when this card appears. It suggests that the question already has the answer in it. In other words, I already know the answer to this and just need to focus on applying it.
The 4 of Cups reversed shows Brigid once again this time in her healer aspect. She is holding a chalice towards me with her left hand and a small flame hovers above her right. Whether I choose to accept the chalice is up to me. However I get the sense that if I want to move forward and heal myself in this area I need to accept the chalice.
One of the things I’ve realizing from the cards I’ve pulled this week is that the past continues to influence my behaviors. I may think I have left that behind and found healthier ways to deal with life but that’s just not the case. These insidious and subversive patterns and embedded in my brain cells. They can’t be rooted out until I acknowledge they exist and begin to take those steps to change them.
I have often written of knowing what I need to do and not doing it. I think that is the answer to this question. I can make a bulleted list of what will get me on track and remove these hindrances but I don’t do them. This dysfunction is familiar to me and as the saying goes “better the devil you know”. I’m hoping this devil and I have done our last dance. I’m sure we’ll still occasionally partner up – we’ve been engaged in this little contretemps for a long time, but it’s time to change up the dance card. Just because this devil knew me first doesn’t mean he knows me best. I know I can do this, I can make these changes and stop repeating these patterns but first I need a cup of tea.
Oh goody, two reversed cards. I just love reversals. Actually, all snarkiness aside, this makes perfect sense in terms of the question and the issue I’ve been visiting this week. While discussing my reading on Monday with a friend she posed the question I’m using today. She pointed out that we often repeat behavioral patterns we learned in childhood and from our families even when they’ve ceased to be useful. In my family financial stability was an illusion for most of my childhood. My parents were perpetually broke which resulted in a lot of change and upheaval. At the same time there was a small core of stability in my life because we always moved around in the same neighborhood and my maternal grandmother was always part of my childhood. This created a situation in me that means I’m uncomfortable with stability because I’ve never known it; it’s uncharted territory for me.
As my friend pointed out, I tend to thrive in chaos. I perform well under pressure. In fact I spent most of my academic career function that way. I regularly waited until the last minute to complete assignments and received great grades. As a result I never felt the need to learn effective time management skills or become more organized. Now I’m starting to realize that if I want to be a successful entrepreneur I’m going to need to acquire just these skills.
The Goddess (Empress) reversed is reminding me that abundance and prosperity were scarce in my childhood. As a result I’m not fully sure how to manage them. This results in situations where I either overspend while I have money or am not able to effectively budget when things are tight. I end up finding myself in stressful and chaotic situations. In the past this has been annoying but not created serious problems. Now that is no longer the case.
Omens/Warnings (The Tower) reversed is telling me I haven’t fully dealt with some of the fallout from our changed circumstances. I am able to deal with the craziness that results from caring for the in-laws (once again thriving in chaos) but long-term planning and financial stability are just not a focus right now and they need to be. We’re so busy acting on what’s going on today that we aren’t planning for tomorrow. We’ve also learned that several of the plans we had made are no longer feasible. We haven’t fully dealt with those changes either. It’s as though the lightning has hit the tree and a huge branch that is now broken hangs over my house but I don’t see the urgency in removing it. That’s just short-sighted and irresponsible. It’s also another pattern I learned in childhood. I had so little control over the craziness around me that I just gave up (in certain areas). I focused on what I could control and excelled in school and other arenas.
So now that I can see these lingering childhood patterns my next step is to change them. I just need to take some baby steps so that I can gain some mastery over this area. Towards that end I’m reading about time management and making some efforts to actually implement them in my life. I doubt it will be easy but at least I’m learning.
The other day I pondered what conflicts me about more assertively pursuing a career as a professional Tarot reader. One of my main issues is the need to promote and market myself. Another is that I’m not fully comfortable accepting reading requests when I know there will be times I’m not in the mood to proffer the requested service. I’ve reached out to several friends about the issue and received some very helpful advice many of which involve changing my mindset about the entire process.
So today I decided to take another look at how to works towards settling this matter. I drew the 6 of Swords which reminds me of a faceted gem or panes in a window. On one level this image speaks to me of being a piece of a bigger whole; to make sure that Tarot readings are one part of who I am and what I do. It’s a reminder that I can compartmentalize aspects of my life so that they create a comprehensive and complementary mosaic.
The 9 of Disks reminds me that no one can do it alone. I need to make sure I have a community of friends and loved ones that can help me through times when I’m frustrated, annoyed or feel like a failure. I need to build a safe space, whether virtual or real, where I can be myself and let it all hang out without worries that I’ll upset someone or be perceived in a negative light.
The two of these cards together remind me that life if a puzzle, a patchwork quilt of different experiences, different relationships and different desires. I don’t have to always be “on” or in the mood to do readings for clients but what I must do is treat it as a profession and provide services to the best of my ability. Even if I am not feeling in the mood the client has been brought to me by the Universe for a reason. I own the client and the divine my respect and diligent efforts to give the best possible service. My ego needs to be taken out of that equation. It might be easy but at least now I have a clearer and more realistic attitude and approach to the situation.
The 2 of Disks is interesting in this deck because the image looks the same whether it is upright or reversed. The only difference might be the focus of this card’s energy. At first I rather had a simple message of maintaining balance and perhaps finding ways of partnering with others. Then I had an amazing conversation with the wonderful Nancy Antenucci and during the conversation she pointed out that this card might refer to finding the balance between my left and right brains (which had come up during our chat). Whenever I’ve taken self-administered tests to determine if I’m left-brain or right-brain focused the results are very close, almost evenly split. I often find that my analytical brain battles my intuitive brain (for lack of better terms). I can serve as the pathway between these two spheres.
And I once again drew the Shadow of Disks. Quite a scary card – a wasteland. It seems so desolate and barren; not a fun place to visit. And yet many spiritual traditions have adherents journey into the wilderness or wasteland for a vision quest. Even Jesus spend days in the desert by himself before he began his ministry. My Wasteland might ultimately prove to be a path for me, a way to help others and be a spiritual helper for those who feel isolated, desolate and lost in the wilderness.
Maybe my Libra rising makes me a good connector, a bridge; someone who can help others find the balance between two extremes – solar/lunar, right-brained/left-brained, dark goddess/bright goddess, feminine/masculine. Then again maybe I’m just blowing smoke up my own ass. Time will tell. I’ve always believed I was meant to make a difference in the world no matter how small. Maybe this is my opportunity.
When I read Ellen’s interpretations for these two cards in her companion book, two sentences jumped out at me. For the 9 of Disks Ellen speaks of community and sharing. She points out the the antidote to isolation is sharing and that struck me. I’ve been feeling so isolated and detached lately and I’ve also been avoiding friends and group activity. How can I expect to feel like part of a community and overcome this sense of isolation if I withdraw? It’s counter-intuitive. For so long I’ve felt like the outsider watching through a window as others embrace and share experiences. Part of that is due to my childhood – my branch of the family was something of an embarrassment to the rest so we often weren’t invited to family events. This gave me the sense that every other branch of the family was close. With age sometimes comes wisdom and enlightenment. In the last few years I’ve had some conversations with cousins that made me realize my belief was an illusion. Some of them might have been closer to others but that was due to being of a similar age with similar interests. Unfortunately that sense of otherness and outsider status is still in my bones.
The 5 of Wands has that bright, fiery, dancing star at it’s center. Ellen’s descriptive phrase for this card shouts “Look at me. I’ve got something to say!” Oh brother do I feel like that right now. For Simpsons fans, I feel like Lisa when the teachers go on strike. She stands in the kitchen near Marge begging “Rate me, evaluate and rank me. I’m ever so smart.” That’s how I feel now that I’m no longer in the workforce or attending classes. I feel as though I have no external validation or recognition. One way to lessen that sense is by participating in group activities and becoming part of a community of folks with similar interests.
Okay so I get it – the way to maintain my momentum is to find support groups or special interest groups that will nourish my spirit and provide me with folks of a like mind with whom to share ideas and trade experiences. If I don’t have some sort of support group I’ll eventually run out of steam and become distracted. so for my own benefit and healing, I need to stop trying to do things alone. This message has been coming through loud and clear over the past few weeks. Now I need to actually listen and do something about it.
The 9 of Water shows the Lady of the Lake, she who gave Excalibur to King Arthur, beguiled Merlin and reared Lancelot du Lac. She is both of the water and above the water. Ellen describes her as the British Goddess of the Quest. She is a key figure in many versions of the Arthurian legend and in Marion Zimmer Bradley’s Mists of Avalon the Lady of the Lake is a title born by the leading priestess who keeps the old ways at Avalon.
The Lady of the Lake may grant our heart’s desire but there is often a price that must be paid in return – a gift calls for a gift. She is mysterious and in some ways beyond our understanding because she is not human. She is fae, otherworldly and her priorities are not our own. That does not mean she is to be feared but her power must be respected. If we make a vow to her, it must be kept.
She is reversed for me which suggests that the vow I must keep is one I made to myself. She is reminding me that the essence of my heart’s desire need to water my own heart. How often we put ourselves out to help other achieve their dreams or hearts’ desires while we ignore our own. It is so easy to put aside our dreams and desires because we aren’t important. Why do we do this to ourselves? I’m not sure but I’m certainly as guilty of it as many others (especially women)
Strength reversed reinforces her message of a few days ago – inner strength can become a trap when it prevents us from admitting we need assistance or can’t do something alone. Even the wildest nature sometimes needs a harbor from the storm and might benefit from a helping hand. I know I’m strong enough to endure whatever life tosses my way but who wants to endure? I want to thrive and live my life to the fullest. Perhaps that’s only truly possibly when one can admit no matter how strong we are, everyone can use support, sympathy and guidance.
Looking at the image of Somavila on this card I was struck by how pert she looks standing with her hands on her hips behind a large bear. She is unafraid and even seem amused that we might fear the bear. She knows its heart and is confident it will not harm her. Perhaps she reminds me that knowing what is in my own heart will not harm me either.
The combined forces of these two ladies tell me that I need to work on keeping vows I made to myself. They are important and vital to maintaining my wild, succulent juiciness (yes I’m a SARK fan). I need to embrace those vows and let them help transform my life from one of endurance to one of exuberance. They also remind me that even the greatest legendary heroes and heroines had help on their journeys. There is no shame in seeking aid and guidance. The shame is not availing yourself of what is available because of a false sense of pride.
Okay so let me see, if I want to be happy and celebrate my gifts today I need to let go and move on and not lose my head about things? That sounds about right.
Lisa Hunt illustrated the 5 of Pentacles using the story of the Unquiet Grave in which a man’s inability to stop mourning his lose love prevents her from moving on. Yesterday I addressed how the lingering ghosts of Christmases Past have often undermined my own ability to move on. I think this card is reinforcing the message that it’s time to release that negative energy and find a way to manifest new memories and new joys in my life.
The Headless Horseman shown on the King of Swords reminds me to use my brain and stop torturing myself. It’s also symbolic of the power of illusion. In Washington Irving’s original tale the Horseman’s legend used to scare off a superstitious Ichabod Crane. Brom is described as looking “exceedingly knowing’ whenever the tale is told implying he impersonated the Horseman to rid the village of Crane, his rival for Katrina’s hand. That in no way diminishes the power of the legend. Indeed it might even strengthen it because it adds the power of belief.
How often have people sabotaged themselves because they believed in something negative about themselves? We often created self-fulfilling prophecies and then point to them as proof that we didn’t deserve any better. It’s difficult enough when others see us through the lenses of their perceptions of us. How much worse is the damage we cause ourselves when we begin to believe these perceptions and manifest them in our lives?
If I want to stop making my life about the past and an ability to let go then I will be creating a scary and haunted future. If I use my head and change my mindset, then I can become the master of my own future and not allow the legends of others or my own past to hold me back.
My affirmation: I let go of the sadness of the past and what is lost, putting my mind towards created a limitless future.
The last few days have been quite revealing and insightful at least from a Tarot perspective. In response to my daily queries focusing on how I should use my energy, I have drawn the 8 of Wands reversed crossed by The Wheel, Temperance crossed by The Emperor reversed, 7 of Pentacles crossed by Death reversed, and the 9 of Cups reversed, 3 of Cups reversed and Judgment.
Without going into details about what each daily reading means, the overall sense I get is one of blocked progress, energy denied. I think what the cards are trying to let me know is that my usual method of doing things, my normal priorities and even my former lifestyle are just not going to be useful right now. The circumstances in my life preclude putting that energy to use in the external world. In other words finding an outside job or becoming involved in community activities or groups that require in-person participation are probably not a good idea right now.
So that means I need to find other ways of meeting my needs and finding fulfillment. I need to explore new ways of expressing my creativity and manifesting my dreams. I need to also find creative ways to generate some income in my life. Obviously a 9-5 traditional job will not work for me at this time.
I feel like a river that has been dammed and hasn’t yet found a new outlet or new path to the sea. I know it will happen but I’m so unsure and confused about which way to look. This is an area I need to do more research and inquiry. Perhaps it’s time to explore answers from the Tarot and other mediums as well. I suppose time will tell.
The Queen of Swords reversed – I guess it’s time to sheath my tongue and relax a bit; time to focus more on the nurturing and supportive aspects of my personality and less on the intellectual and more focused aspects. Or maybe that’s not it. Maybe what she’s trying to tell me is not about focusing on external matters. Instead she may be pointing out that I need to start communicating with myself, getting inside my own head.
The Magician reminds me that in order for me to control my world, to work the magic I seek in my life I must first work out some sort of arrangement with the Queen of Swords. It’s curious but looking at both images they seem to be wearing similar outfits – modified and whimsical ballet tutus. As I child I remember being disconsolate because my mother would not buy me a tutu. I had just signed up for ballet classes and had dreams of becoming a prima ballerina (well I don’t know if my dreams were that clear but I definitely wanted to be a princess ballerina and a princess ballerina needs a tutu!!). My mother still talks about the pleading I did in the department store begging her for a tutu. My grandmother even offered to buy it for me (my memory is that is was a rainbow colored little girl’s dream) but Mom turned down her offer.
Looking back I understand that there were many reasons I didn’t get that tutu, not the least of which was financial. However looking at these two images I am again reminded of the tutu denied. If the tutu represents my dreams then these two figures are reminding me that in order to attain my dream I need to be clear on what those dreams are and then work towards them. It’s not simply about donning the proper costume, you must also have the skills, focus and abilities to put it to good use. Even if I had gotten that rainbow tutu I would not have become a ballerina. I enjoyed taking dance classes and was a decent dancer but I never had the determination and drive necessary to be more than a decent amateur. However that doesn’t mean I can’t achieve other dreams; more realistic dreams. I simply need to clarify what they are and then focus and communicate with myself to see how I can manifest them in my life.