Blue Rose Moon

Blue Rose Moon

Blue Rose Tarot
Created by Paula Gibby
Published by Soul Guidance

The book says: And the Fool understands at last what he has been seeking as he traveled these many, many pathways.

Not just the ability to know – and not just the ability to dream. But the ability to understand the difference combined with the intuition to know how, where and when the two should come together.

And the power to make it happen.

As needed.

As wanted.

The true pearl of all existence.

Wisdom.

Just the mental visualization of the word causes the Universe to move once again. And the great Moon overhead casts down her golden beams of luminous light upon the dark water. And slowly, rhythmically, those waters begin to move. Very slowly at first, this ebb and flow of water, until at last, the growing walls of water begin to crash against the rocks, spewing their foam into the air. Crashing violently against those enormous columns of stone. The solid reality of rock. The ever-changing ebb and tide of water. The shifting interplay of light and shadow. A rhythm of movement both ancient…And eternal.

TarotBroad’s Buzz: This card speaks of darkness and mystery, of shadows and secrets.  Who is this figure and what does she (he) want?  Why is the figure standing at the shoreline and what does she hope to see?  Is the full moon friend or foe? Guardian or watcher?

Obviously the answers to these questions will depend upon your perspective but for me I see the figure as a guide to the mysteries of the moon.  She will help you examine the truths which we keep hidden even from ourselves; those deep, dark emotions we may prefer to avoid or to embrace so heartily that we lose sight of all else.  She is the guardian of our shadow side, our deep inner nature.  She can help us find the way back to shore after we have visited those stones in the middle of our soul, but she won’t save us if we chose to drown.  She understands that the darker, more intuitive side of our nature can be frightening and overwhelming but she cannot overcome that fear, we must do it on our own. She can help us learn to accept and embrace that side of ourselves but she cannot do it for us. She is also a sentinel watching to make sure that nothing too frightening overwhelms us until we are ready to deal with it.

In some ways this card reminds me of the role Dr. Wilbur, the psychiatrist, takes in the movie Sybil about a woman with multiple personality disorder. She cannot protect Sybil from the truth of her past with all its pain and torment but she can help her take it one step at a time until she is ready to embrace all of her selves and face the truth about her childhood. It can no longer physically hurt Sybil but dredging up those hidden memories almost causes her to hurt herself. Dr. Wilbur is there to guide her past those rocky points and let Sybil learn how to integrate her many selves into a healthy whole.

In the last few years, with nothing better to do than ponder such questions, I’ve begun to consider the difference between knowledge and wisdom. When I was younger I used these words interchangeably – and still do to some extent. Experience and mistakes have finally begun teaching me how different these two words are – well for me at least.

Greenwood Tarot High Priestess

I’ve decided that my definitions of knowledge and wisdom are as follows: Knowledge is the information we acquire through study, learning and life experience. Wisdom is knowing how, where and when to apply that knowledge. A great example of this is seen in an episode of The Big Bang Theory. Our favorite nerds are in Leonard’s car on their way to smite one Todd Zarnecki for stealing Sheldon’s virtual treasure. On the way Leonard’s car breaks down. He asks the car filled with “geniuses” if anyone knows anything about internal combustion engines. They all respond in the affirmative. Then he asks if any of them know how to fix an internal combustion engine and they all say “No”. They have the knowledge but not the wisdom needed for this situation.

In many ways it’s part of the maturation process. I still remember 20-something me starting at my new job. I was filled with confidence (well over-confidence really) and sure that I could fix everything that was wrong at this place if they were only smart enough to listen to me. I knew it all (except how and when to keep my mouth shut – still quite a problem in fact). Thankfully I was lucky enough to have a few supervisors who took a shine to me and showed me a thing or two. They helped me become a bit more thoughtful and less cocky. Within a few years I was one of the “old-timers” who groaned at the arrogance and ignorance of the newbies – exhibiting the same cockiness I once did.

Druid Animal Oracle Owl

A poem about a owl always stuck with me since childhood “The wise old owl lived in an oak. The more he saw, the less he spoke. The less he spoke, the more he heard. Why can’t we be like that wise old bird?” This owl has become an object lesson and inspiration for me. I hope to some day become wise enough to shut the hell up. It’s still a work in progress but at least I’ve become more conscious of it now.

Hermit – Wheel of Change Tarot

Wheel of Change Hermit

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

The Book says: When the Hermit is part of your Tarot spread, you will want to consult your inner truth for answers. The card is a reminder that what is really true and right for you is within you waiting to be noticed. A good way to get in touch with inner thoughts and your inner teacher is to spend some quiet time alone and in nature. This card may be present to remind you that you simply need more retreat time. Like the Hermit, you must shine a light into the darkness and illuminate what needs to be seen. The Hermit is a card of keen introspection and observation and reminds us that to be truly alive to the world, we must have time to open to all that surrounds us. Like the Hermit’s beacon of light, the truth comes from inside and calls to us; we only need to pay attention.

TarotBroad’s Buzz: Here we have yet another side to the Hermit – the solitary philosopher and alchemist. This is the scientists seeking to find the answer to the mysteries of the Universe. The mad professor who is determined to solve the riddles surrounding him. He is a Hermit because involvement with other people merely distracts him from his task. He believes he can find the answers he seeks by looking at the stars, the natural world around him and within himself. He is introspective and observant; his senses have been honed to a keen edge. But there is a danger to this side of the Hermit too.

He has little patience for human frailties and fears. He is a seeker and nothing will stand in the way of his quest. He is Victor Frankenstein seeking to understand the meaning and creation of life. He is J. Robert Oppenheimer, “father” of the atomic bomb. This Hermit represents the pure quest for knowledge with no concern about its possible applications. His unquenchable thirst for knowledge leads him down paths which conventional minds might prefer to avoid. In recent times the Hermit is seen among those working on cloning. In fact as a quote from the original Planet of the Apes says “how can scientific truth be heresy”. To me this encapsulates the Hermit’s philosophy. How can knowledge be evil or wrong?  If humans don’t continue to grow and learn and explore then we are not taking advantage of the very thing that supposedly raises us above the other animals – our intellect.

At the same time the Hermit is a beacon, a light of hope in the darkness. For with each step he makes on an intellectual level, he forces us to grow on a spiritual and ethical level as well. We might not keep us as easily as we would like or hope, but that seems to be the nature of humanity. We have to face the worst in ourselves before we can step back from the darkness. The Hermit’s lamp guides the way in both directions, forcing us to face facts we might prefer to ignore but also giving us the tools to deal with them.

Blue Rose Hierophant

Blue Rose Tarot
Designed by Paula Gibby
Produced by Soul Guidance

The Book says:  The Hierophant helps us build a bridge between the physical and spiritual planes.  He is the Holy Teacher like Moses, Socrates, Plato, Jesus, Buddha, Mohammed, Lao Tze, and Confucius among others.  “The are our guides, our wisdom teachers.  They are essential.

They are a gift from the Universe.

The High Priestess and Hierophant work in concert to assist us in achieving our spiritual goals.  They provide the foundation for our spiritual journey.  The mysterious and at times unfathomable, nature of the High Priestess is tempered by the orderly assistance of her consort.

In essence, the High Priestess gifts us with the intuition and inner vision to perceive the spiritual plane.  The Hierophant helps us draft our intinerary, draw our roadmap and provides us with teh tools, techniques and rituals to keep us focused enought to keep the goal in sight and complete the journey.”

TarotBroad’s Buzz: I have to admit that I absolutely adore this card. Something about it speaks to me of ancient wisdom being passed on in a somewhat furtive manner. The students both seem female to me (I may be wrong) and the fact that they are seeking the knowledge possessed by this scholar seems both empowering and brave. After all in many of those cultures, even know, women are not permitted to know this secret wisdom. But they are defying the rules to find their path to divine knowledge.There is something rich and wondrous in this card. The scholar seems so focused on his books that he seems almost unaware of the women, but they are obviously enthralled by what he represents.

This card represents ancient wisdom, lore and knowledge that has been passed on for generations; and an almost unquenchable thirst to learn and to absorb. The old scholar seems to exude knowledge, wisdom and secrets. He also seems to be dedicated and might be short with those who aren’t serious in their quest. He will help you find the secrets hidden in the ancient texts but he will not tolerate frivolous pursuits. He is only interested in helping if you are serious about your quest. This card does show some of the patriarchal connection we often see with the Hierophant. But at the same time I get the feeling that he loves this knowledge too much to hoard it. He will share it but only if he is convinced that the seeker will be as dedicated and passionate as he is. He will serve as the guide, but only for the serious seeker.

The Sage – Transformational Tarot

Transformational Sage

Transformation Tarot
Created by by Arnell Ando
Published by US Games ISBN:1572815396

The Book Says: Having faith in one’s higher consciousness or the power of the universe. Ancient knowledge will guide you. A deeper connection can be experienced through meditation and ritual. The seeker’s compassion, empathy, values, ethics, and insight draws others to him or her. This card can also denote both the need to find a deeper meaning in life and the assistance from a wise person. The Sage can also stand for a spiritual leader, psychologist or a nonconformist acting as a guide or teacher.

TarotBroad’s Buzz: This card speaks to me of the wisdom and the ancient knowledge to be found in the world around us and the traditions of our ancestors. The African deities remind me of our connection to each other and to our history. They indicate a thread that weaves its way through the rich tapestry that is human history, like the DNA that connects humans to our ancient foremother (“Mitochondrial Eve”). The glorious colored autumn leaves are the reminder that all things change. Life is about change and cycles.

But just as the fall foliage reminds us of life’s ever-changing nature, the green leaves on the branches below remind us that there is an underlying continuity to everything. The Universe has a core, a center, that remains the same no matter what chaos roars around it. The green leaves are that still center, the eye of the hurricane. They symbolize the concept that life goes on – bits and pieces may change but the pattern of the Universe continues to weave its story. To me The Sage is the reminder that we are connected to the Divine in the world. We are all part of the same tapestry, just as all humans are connected by our DNA. And if we can find that still place within ourselves and learn to connect with that divine source, then we will be able to face whatever changes and chaos roar in our own lives too.

Mansions of the Moon Hierophant

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

Traditional meaning – doctrine & dogma, passing along knowledge & traditions, spiritual guidance,

TarotBroad’s Buzz: This card is full of Christian/Catholic imagery indicating its connection to traditional, orthodox religious beliefs. The priests are garbed in full regalia and express the power and authority of their office. The Eucharist and angels symbolize the connection to the divine while the doves represent the Holy Spirit. This card’s message suggests that following the path being offered by the priests is the way to find the keys to heaven – the connection to the divine. The doves are the messengers of the divine. They carry the Universe’s spiritual message to humanity. The angels are another reminder of the spiritual mysteries of the universe. And the priests are the guides through the golden archway to connect with these divine emissaries.

When I first viewed this card I was initially a bit turned off by the Christian symbolism, especially the priests, but upon further reflection it struck me that in the truest sense that is what a priest should be – not the strict, disciplinarian seeking to strike fear in the hearts of those who break the rules. Priests should be the guides and the teachers, gently giving us the knowledge, wisdom and support we need to find our own way through the golden archway to connect with the divine energy in the Universe.

Celtic Wisdom Rememberer

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

The book says: The Rememberer of Lore transmits the wisdom of traditions by which we all live. The essential lore that we need to keep over before us is sung by the bard. What song is guiding you at this time?
Keywords: Tradition, Meditation, Exposition of ideas, Remembrance, Genius, Performance, Spiritual counsel, Sacred lore, Faithful maintenance.
Reversed: Hidebound or conformist concepts, Muddling, Misinformation, propaganda or conspiracy, Forgetfulness, adherence to narrow views.

TarotBroad’s Buzz:  This card speaks to me of the Bardic tradition in Celtic culture. The Bard was much more than a storyteller and singer. He memorized the genealogy of the kings, the myths and legends of the tribe, tribal law and the wisdom of the people. There are tales of Bards whose curses brought kingdoms crashing down. This card represents the keeper of traditions and lore. The one who passes the knowledge down to the younger generation to ensure it continues.

It is actually one of the more positive Hierophant images I’ve ever seen. When I see this card it reminds me that traditions and ancient legends are the foundations upon which our culture and history is based. It reminds of the saying that those who do not remember history are condemned to repeat it (or something like that) and that is why the Rememberer is so important. If we don’t learn from the tales of our ancestors then we will continue to make the same mistakes and never advance to the next step in the cycle. The Rememberer serves as our spiritual guide along the path.

At the same time he appears isolated and solitary. The wreath that surrounds him also serves to separate him from others. The Bard may need to be solitary in order to focus his energy and his mind upon his art. But he may also be solitary because those who remind us of the past may often raise issues we prefer not to face. On some level this serves to connect him with the Hermit. He cannot be alone because by its nature his work requires him to go out amongst the people to hear their stories and to share them with others. But his travels may also prevent him from putting down roots in community. So while he can help others learn and remember the tales and traditions of our ancestors, he also serves as the thread connecting different communities to each others; part of the pattern and yet separate. He teaches the lore but does not necessarily participate in the making of the history.

Wheel of Change Hierophant

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

The Book says: “When this card is part of your reading, look carefully at what part your faith plays in your life. What do you put your faith in: your work, your religion, your children, your self, a particular teacher, or the future? Do you have any faith in your life? . . .

The second part of the interpretation of this card is to examine the possibly negative aspects of one’s faith. We must be aware that the dogma we acquire through various religions and attitudes can be used to justify – without examination – all manner of behaviors. We must look carefully at how our rights and wrongs are determined and whether they arise out of a true sense of the common good or out of a need to require conformity to a narrow dogma.”

TarotBroad’s Buzz:  I admit that the concepts represented by this are ones that I often find difficult to accept. I have a negative knee-jerk reaction to most organized religions and that is what The Hierophant represents to me. However, the longer I consider this card the more I realize that, just as with all the other cards, it has both positive and negative associations.

The positive aspects of the Hierophant are the peace and calm that rituals and spiritual beliefs can bring to followers. In times of crisis people often find refuge and consolation in their religious beliefs. It is that feeling of welcome and belonging one feels in a church or temple. That calming and soul-soothing sense of timeless and eternal spirit. I never remember feeling this during religious services but I do recall feeling this at odd moments when I would enter a church to light a candle or just to sit quietly.

The negative side of the Hierophant can be seen in blind obedience and close-mindedness that can accompany any organized (and many disorganized) religious system. I often see this as the political arm of any church. It is the hierarchical structure that seeks to maintain control over its followers. I find it interest that Jesus would probably be horrified at the atrocities done in his name. Then again I know many Pagans who seem to be heading down the same dogmatic “Paganer than thou” path. Both sides of this coin are what come to mind when I see the Hierophant – both spirituality and dogmatic organization.

Thoughtful Thor’s Day: What is wisdom?

What is wisdom?  The Merriam-Websiter website defines it as:

  • knowledge that is gained by having many experiences in life
  • the natural ability to understand things that most other people cannot understand
  • knowledge of what is proper or reasonable : good sense or judgment
    (“Wisdom.” Merriam-Webster.com. Merriam-Webster, n.d. Web. 10 July 2014. <http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wisdom>)

To me wisdom refers not just to knowledge and acquiring intellectual information. Wisdom is having that information and knowing how to apply it in real life. How many of us know people who are whiz kids at something like Jeopardy or Trivial Pursuit but have no common sense and make lousy decisions in everyday life. I often see wisdom as something that is gained along with life experience and learning from our mistakes. Wisdom is being able to apply all the knowledge we’ve acquired into our daily lives. Wisdom is being able to look at a situation and make a judgment call. For some reason whenever I think of wisdom I think back to the myths. Macha the Red showed wisdom when she outsmarted the son of Dithorba; Brigid showed wisdom when she spread her cloak to acquire land for her abbey.

I have found that wisdom is sometimes quite rare in society. I often feel that it is lacking in the scientific community when pure researchers pursue investigations that ultimately create more problems than they solve. Such as when they try to find ways to grow crops that circumvent the damage done to the earth (such as hydroponics). By the time we see the effects of our poor judgment it is too late to correct the damage. Knowledge sought in a vacuum with no consideration of its potential impact is not wisdom.

It is interesting that wisdom can sometimes have nothing to do with age or experience. It can be found in young children and be missing from mature adults.

Wisdom is something that I have faith I will one day acquire. I’m fairly confident that I have the knowledge. But I know from past experience that my wisdom and judgment can occasionally be challenged. But I think I’m starting to get the hang of it. And maybe that’s part of wisdom too – accepting that I don’t necessarily have all the answers and I don’t have to. Wisdom is acknowledging that I will make mistakes and not being angry about being human and fallible.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox

Join other followers:

%d bloggers like this: