Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Mabon Blog Hop: Trusting Intuition

Greetings, and Happy Mabon! Please use the links at the top or bottom of this post to access the other wonderful blogs in this circle.

Our wrangler for this hop, Morgan Drake Eckstein, has asked us to consider and write about a time when we feel we made a "quantum leap" in our understanding of the cards. At first I didn't know what I might write about for this topic, because learning and integration of Tarot (as with any divination system) feels so gradual, and in some ways implicit.

But one afternoon I received a reading request from a client, and it wasn't about love, or work, or money. She had been studying the cards for years and felt she wasn't making any progress. She wanted to know what was creating limitations for her, and how to be a better reader. These are the kinds of questions I really love to explore with clients, and as we worked through her reading we found that she was over-intellectualizing the process. She was treating divination like math class: memorize the formulas, understand what the symbols mean….and once she's done that she should be golden, right? But she wasn't golden. She was stuck.

As we explored her blocks and how to address them, I was brought back to that "quantum leap" I'd made in my own studies, and I knew just what to write about for this hop…

That little voice that speaks to us….
Photo Credit

When I first started to really study and learn Tarot I used a Marseilles-style deck; the Major Arcana was beautifully illustrated, but the cards in the Minor Arcana featured just the appropriate number of elements for the suit. In other words, the 6 of Pentacles showed just six pentacles. There were no images that might help a novice learner understand the energy being represented. I'm an academic, and I'm very methodical about learning. I went to the library, found a nice book on Tarot meanings that also showed the Rider Waite images for each card, and I studied and memorized and studied and memorized. I created lists and charts, and I learned that deck. When I saw the 4 of Swords, I didn't just see four swords, I imagined the Rider Waite depiction, and it helped make meaningful connections to my own deck. Great?

Sort of! Except studying in that way is like crafting a mojo bag without breathing life into it. It's static and stale. I wanted my readings to come to life, become more dynamic, but I had spent so much time memorizing those book meanings that I was afraid to let them go. Eventually I decided I needed some help - I needed someone to encourage me to let go of my limitations, to tap into something more than my intellect. One day I saw an advertisement for an "Intuitive Tarot" class at a local metaphysical shop, and I signed right up.

The instructor was a wonderful woman who had been working with the cards and as a medium for over 30 years. The first thing she said was "bring whatever deck appeals to you." I had brought the Radiant Rider Waite because I assumed that would be the deck of choice for a formal class. But she felt that the most important thing about becoming a reader is not to memorize meanings, but to pay attention to the art - what does it say? What parts draw your attention? How does it make you feel? How do the colors mesh together, and what message does that send? To read that way, it's best to have a deck that you're drawn to, not necessarily the most common or traditional deck.

Golden Tarot - Liz Dean

To be clear, she wasn't encouraging students not to study card meanings - she felt that in the long run knowing the meanings would be very helpful. But she wanted everyone in the room to leave class on the last day with the ability to give accurate readings, and knowing book meanings wasn't essential for that. (As a side note, I suspect there are many people who never read Tarot because they're overwhelmed by the prospect of having to learn all those meanings. This particular method teaches that you can give great readings by trusting your intuition first, and there's still room to work on traditional meanings and structure over time). Whew, I was in the right place! In fact it was harder for me than for other students because I was so attached to those meanings; I had to unlearn a bit in order to loosen up and open up my intuitive channels.

That class was wonderful in that it gave me "permission" to let the cards speak to me personally, to delve into a deeper level of reading than what I had been allowing myself to experience. And in the end I was able to find a reading style that struck a comfortable balance between my intuition and rational mind, so that I was able to honor both; my readings became so much richer and more profound. That was rewarding.

High Priestess, by Panskiduf

But trusting your intuition is not always easy, especially when you're first learning. And in the case of my client who'd been studying for years and wasn't making significant progress, her blockage hinged on her fear of honoring her intuition and letting it speak to her. Most readers have had that experience - you have a "gut feeling," or a hunch, or a proverb pops into your head seemingly out of nowhere. Do you tell the client, or keep it to yourself? What if you're wrong? Too risky, better just stick with the standard meanings. Then the client starts chattering away about the details of their situation, and everything you were feeling turns out to be precisely the case, and if you'd have just said that then your reading would have been so much better! Well, that's the process of learning to trust yourself, and it takes time and a pinch of bravery, but it's so worth it in the long-run.

With that, I send you on to the next Blog Hop post - Mabon Blessings!

A Lenormand Daily Tells It True

I pull Lenormand lines of 3 almost every day, both for myself and for my husband. Of course as with dailies across any system of divination, the meaning of the cards tends to be toned-down or even literal.

If you draw a rather negative card, therefore, such as the Clouds, this is a good thing; rather than signifying deep confusion or misfortune it most likely is referring to a momentary feeling of uncertainty, or even that it will be raining that day. On the other hand, it also means that the very best cards are also toned-down or literal, so the Bouquet may suggest that your allergies could be an issue (flowers carry pollen, after all!).

With these variations in mind, dailies can be a great way to get to know the cards, as well as seeing how your predictions manifest across your day.

Yesterday morning I pulled Rider - Sun - Fish. The meaning was quite clear: Good news about money. The card on the bottom of the deck was Letter, so I imagined that the news would come in the form of a letter or an email. Ooooo, good news about money! I tried not to get too excited, since I figured it would unlikely signify anything life-changing. But all the same it was a positive line to pull, so I took a picture and promptly forgot about it entirely.

Game of Hope Lenormand

I worked a long day and in the evening Jorge picked me up and brought me home. As we were driving down our street I noticed a plant I wanted to investigate up-close, so after we pulled into our driveway, I dropped my bags in the house so that we could stroll down the block to check it out. As we passed the mailbox Jorge pulled out everything we'd received that day, and seeing a stack of envelopes I was keen to know what they were all about; I wanted to enjoy the stroll, and with that bundle of tantalizingly mysterious mail it was hard to concentrate. So I made him stop in his tracks and flip through each bit until I was satisfied that there was nothing of particular interest or concern, and we continued on our way. In fact the only envelope I was at all curious about was from my health insurance following a procedure I'd had several weeks back. A week earlier the doctor's office had sent me the bill in full and after having a mini-heart attack I realized that they'd never billed my insurance company! So I called and straightened it out, though I was still a bit anxious that there would be some cost left-over for me to pay.

The plant was a bust (not the type it had seemed to be from the car) so we headed back home. Jorge put the stack of mail in the kitchen and I grabbed the envelope from my insurance company to open. I was immensely relieved - between the insurance discount and the coverage, I had nothing left to pay!

And it was then that I started laughing because I realized that my morning line of 3 had just manifested: very good news about money. :)

Monday, September 22, 2014

Apophyllite Dreams

Dreams have always been important to me. For as long as I can remember, every time I had a vivid, powerful dream, I would write it down - these are the dreams that feel important, that deserve attention and investigation; there is a message there. This does not mean that I've always been ace at remembering all of my dreams. I, like most people, have experienced long periods of time where I either have felt that I haven't dreamt at all, or I only remember a small fragment of a dream, or I remember the essence, but upon going about my morning routine it fades like morning mist in the sun.

I have had what people sometimes call "prophetic" dreams. That sounds glorious, but to me a prophetic dream simply means that you've been clued in to something that is likely to occur, or already is occurring, in real life. I once had a very important, yet rather mundane, prophetic dream about my husband's credit card! Many pregnant women have prophetic dreams about the children developing in their wombs. They are a special sort of dream to have, but that doesn't mean they have to be earth-shattering in regards to the implications of their message.

Dreaming; Image from Creative Commons

I've also had dreams that convey important messages in symbol. In other words, they may be a reflection of something I'm experiencing, a clarification of a feeling, or perhaps my higher self knocking me upside the head. Whatever the source, these dreams speak much like Tarot does - in metaphor. For instance I recall the only dream I've ever hard that's caused me to wake up sobbing: when I was pregnant with my middle child, I dreamt that my oldest had died. I was devastated and heart broken, but the dream was simply symbolizing my deep sadness at the sense of losing the one-on-one relationship that I'd developed with my oldest over the course of seven years. My excitement and anticipation regarding my new little one was balanced by the feeling that I was somehow losing my first child. It was good to recognize that feeling and also to learn, over time, that my relationship with my older daughter was not lost or diminished at all - it was simply transformed.

Apophyllite crystals

A few months ago I served as the beta-reader for Jenna Matlin's really well-done eBook on Tarot reading at festivals and fairs. As a "thank you" she sent me a very cool gift: two pouches of "chakra stones." In the crown chakra bag I found a crystal I'd never heard of before: apophyllite. The accompanying card said that this crystal was great for connecting to higher vibrational energies, and for communication with spirit energy. Sounded good to me! I stuck it under my pillow that very same night feeling that it would be good to keep it within my vibrational field. I had no idea what I was in for.

I woke the next morning feeling like I had been to a quadruple-feature film at the theater. I remembered every dream I had all night long, and let me tell you - I apparently pack 'em in back to back. It was striking and I thought, "If that was caused by the stone under my pillow, then that's the fastest working, most potent crystal I've ever encountered!" That day I did an online search about apophyllite and sure enough I found that several sites list it as being conducive to dream recall and lucid dreaming!

This all started a month ago and the dreaming experience that I had that first night has become the norm. Not only do I remember my dreams every night, but the number of significant dreams that I've had has increased quite a bit as well (or at least my ability to retain them has!). It's absolutely amazing. 

Here are a couple of the more memorable ones:

In one dream a few weeks back I saw a picture of the Ace of Swords, and heard a voice telling me that my air energy was off-balance and I needed to pay more attention to the fact that I was worrying far too much, and underutilizing the strength and power of my mental faculties. It was like a conversation with a guide or my higher self. I couldn't see anyone, there was just the voice and the image, and nothing else but a gray backdrop. When I awoke I had a strong sense that I had truly been receiving an important and direct communication about my well-being. And since that night I've improved a lot in the area of focus and intention, and have curbed a lot of my unproductive anxiety.

Rider Waite Tarot - US Games

Another dream I had just a couple of nights ago featured me wearing a white, flowing, cotton dress. I was going herb hunting, and happened across a grove of Elderberry trees situated in a circle, located in a common green area of what looked like a suburban neighborhood. I was so excited to have found these wonderful trees, and I climbed into the branches with a little plastic sandwich baggie. The branches were covered with lush bunches of white elderflowers, and I started to experiment with harvesting them. Suddenly I stopped myself because I remembered that I'd forgotten to acknowledge and thank the lady of the Elderberry trees! I was upset with myself. So I stopped what I was doing and apologized to the lady for my clumsiness, and then thoroughly thanked her for what I had taken and what I planned to take. I collected what seemed like a lot of wonderful flowers, but in reality was only a tiny fraction of what was available. I had a moment of concern, wondering if the people living in the houses nearby would think I was "up to something" and call the police. However I finished my harvesting, and never saw a soul. I stepped off the tree branch and floated down to the ground. 

Image from Creative Commons

Suffice to say, my dream journal has grown quite a bit lately. Having been so floored by the power of this crystal, I went online and ordered two more apophyllite crystals so that I could create a simple grid with them and selenite. And I've found that my dreams stay active and vibrant now even when I happen not to have an apophyllite crystal under my pillow. Perhaps that's because the crystals are always nearby even when they're not nestled into my pillowcase. Perhaps it's because once the door is opened it's not easily shut again. I don't know. But I do know that this has been one of the most powerful experiences with a crystal that I've ever had, and I look forward to continuing to develop and learn from my dreams with the help of this wonderful stone. I recommend it to anyone seeking to explore their own Dreamtime. There are vendors selling large pieces of apophyllite for quite a hefty price, but a small, natural pyramid (which is what I've been using) can be found for around $3. 

Good luck, and happy dreaming!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Witches Are Healers

Yesterday morning I woke up and went straight to the kitchen to begin to prepare a brew. My youngest child developed a rather nasty cold, full of congestion and coughs and the day before I had prepared a batch of tea using elderberry and elderflower, lemon balm, echinacea root, peppermint, mullein, and a couple of other herbal goodies. After giving him three or four cups throughout the day I started to see a significant improvement in his congestion and coughing, and that night he slept fairly well. So I was motivated, and first thing in the morning set myself to making a new batch of the same wonderful tea.

Healing tea a'brewing!

Fortunately my son loves tea, and didn't mind drinking so many cups of "the same flavor." So I began my day yesterday by preparing a second round of healing tea, during which my husband laughed and said "te ves bruja de verdad!" (You really look like a witch!) I suppose it was seeing me standing there surrounded by herbs, roots, and berries, hand-mixing a special concoction into a muslin tea bag, the steam of boiling water curling around me. I smiled. He likes it when I get "witchy."

Straining arnica oil

Later in the morning he set out to the store to pick up some groceries and I asked him to buy some lemons and garlic for an anti-cold drink I was planning to make for myself that day (after tending to the little one, I was starting to get that "feeling" in the back of my throat - the one that tips you off that you might just get a cold, too, if you're not careful). I remembered that I wanted to apply more oil to my High John pocket piece, so I sat down for a moment to tend to that. My husband had been gone for a while when I suddenly realized that I was missing an ingredient for the arnica salve I wanted to prepare to help him combat some shoulder pain he was having. As I settled down to pick a Halloween Oracle card-of-the-day (focused on the question "what will the predominant energy of my day be?") I phoned him quickly to ask him if he was still at the market. He was, thankfully. And as I was telling him what I needed him to purchase and where he could find it, I pulled…the Witch! Yes, I laughed at that!

Halloween Oracle - Stacey Demarco

On page 70 of the accompanying book Stacey Demarco writes: "Through spells and rituals and even through herbal recipes (yes, often brewed in a cauldron!) they weave the powers of this world and the next in synergy to solve problems and heal." Talk about fitting! I work with herbs (and other things) regularly but yesterday I spent quite a bit more time than usual on my own brews and healing applications, so it was a perfect reflection of my day thus far.

Eventually I prepared myself for teaching, and set off for an afternoon of guiding, directing, and instructing a group of adolescent males (fun, but I usually leave those sessions rather hoarse!). As I left class and was standing outside waiting for Jorge to swing by to pick me up, I was scrolling through my favorite app, Zite, and found an interesting article about the survival of the American indigenous midewiwin society, the shamanic healers of the Anishnaabe and other Algonquin peoples of the northeastern region of the current-day United States. I remembered studying this society when I was probably 13 years old, and drawing a picture of what a midewiwin ceremony might have looked like. I hadn't really heard anyone speak (or write) of this society very much since then, so it really brought me back in time. The article was focused on how the midewiwin practices suffered but were not completely lost when Christianity spread through northern parts of North America via the French settlers and jesuits.

By the end of the day I was sprawled across the couch watching the latest episode of the Lifetime show "Witches of East End." Silly, kind of soap-opera-ish, but somewhat entertaining all the same.

In multiple ways that Witch card was wonderfully apt, with many relevant themes having been woven throughout my entire day, from start to finish. And while I don't have a particular label for myself in terms of what I do and how I practice ritual, or work with plants, I realize that much of what I do is in line with how many people describe witchcraft (and hedge witchcraft is a pretty accurate self-description, I suppose). Perhaps I prefer more benign-sounding names like "root worker" or "healer." In the end, however, they all share a common source, and in some way or another any of those titles may be correct. Witches are healers. Shamans are healers. Root workers are healers. And I was perfectly happy being a witch for a day ;)

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The Hearth is the Heart of the Home

Life has its ups and downs, its Wheel of Fortune tumultuous spins that take you to places you never thought you'd find yourself - both really wonderful, and at times really unpleasant. People marry, babies are born, economic upswings instill hope and possibility, wars quicken, epidemics unfurl, friendships that once seemed promising are somehow lost. Over the past several months my own Wheel has done quite a bit of turning, and it's easy to get caught up in the flashes and colors, climbs and descents. Like turning off a radio that's blaring mixed signals, sometimes it's good to hunker down and shut out the white noise, figure out what's more important, and let that guide you forward.

With that in mind, last night I sat down and asked my Halloween Oracle deck what I really needed to focus on at this moment, above all else. I pulled: the Hearth.

Halloween Oracle, Stacey Demarco/Jimmy Manton

This accompanying book talks about how in ancient Rome the hearth was considered the heart of the home, the dwelling place of Vesta, a goddess closely associated with the family. This is a card that encourages nourishment and attention to family ties, and also portends the well-being of any relatives that are temporarily far away from warming fires of home. This card is welcome and feels very in tune with the ebb and flow of my own present energies. It's time to move inward to the core of my dearest and most intimate community, to focus on my loved ones, to connect with their lives and stories, and to share my own in return. In the end, this is what's most important, and I know that as I reach out and give energy toward fortifying those bonds, they will feed me in return. This is precisely the sort of sustenance I need. It's a wonderfully apt card to draw following the Joy card I drew on the previous day in regard to my husband's upcoming trip. My task is to settle my focus down around my family like a hen over her eggs. (And perhaps light some candles and bake some bread, too!)

Sunday, September 14, 2014

The Halloween Oracle: My Partner's Leaving Home

I was on a date this morning with my beloved husband. With three kids, our "dates" typically consist of an hour or two at a coffee shop, but the truth is that I love those brief moments alone together, and the conversations we have. Today's conversation related in part to his impending travel to Europe for work. He's had a great opportunity arise that will take him away from home for at least a month, and possibly longer. On one hand I'm happy for him and this open door, and I feel it's the right move to make. On the other hand the idea of being apart for so long (and managing our small empire on my own) definitely feels daunting.

After an hour of chatting and planning and thinking and enjoying we decided it was time to go. Fortunately for me there was a bookstore within walking distance, and I can't resist the smell of thousands of books (and cards, ahem) in one place, so I did manage to convince Jorge to make a quick stop there before returning home. I made a cursory check of the metaphysical section, not planning on finding anything particularly motivating, but I was quite wrong! The Halloween Oracle by Stacey DeMarco was sitting there on the shelf peering back at me longingly. I've been following this oracle since pre-production and was very attracted to the style of art. Well, that, and also I love Halloween! I have the Halloween Tarot deck which I like a lot, but it's rather cartoonish for my tastes. This oracle, as my daughter Lourdes put it, "looks more real." Since it was released I've seen many divination colleagues pouncing on it, but despite my long wait I didn't make a move. I suppose it didn't feel like quite the right moment. And yet there it was on the shelf in its shiny cellophane wrapper, calling my name. So I plucked that baby off the shelf and tucked in under my arm, and went off in search of Jorge, who happily agreed that I should buy it (yesssss!).

At home I sorted through the cards and naturally wanted to give it a test drive. I decided to ask about the best way for me to approach this big change coming our way in a few weeks as Jorge flies to distant lands on mysterious adventures. I shuffled, arced the cards, and selected one:

Halloween Oracle, S. DeMarco

Joy! This card shows a woman with raised arms, fall leaves floating down around her, and features the subtitle: Rejoicing in the present. Sigh. Yes, it's true that I've been spending a lot of time wrapped up in my concerns and fears and reluctance, and that as a result I've probably not been spending enough time thoroughly enjoying and savoring these final few weeks leading up to Jorge's departure. The woman in this card doesn't look particularly joyous - her body language is open and welcoming, but her facial expression is rather dour. I'm not entirely happy with the prospect of my family being temporarily divided, but this card encourages me to get over it. Sometimes you have to go through the motions first, and eventually the movements begin to form meaning, and things don't seem quite as bad as they once did. This card encourages me to live in the moment, to enjoy the present with my family rather than focusing so breathlessly on the future. And perhaps by focusing on the positive aspects of his trip, the things that make me really happy that he's going, I can improve and lighten my outlook - find joy - even in those moments when I must face the reality of this significant shift (no matter how brief its duration).

I really like this oracle. This is new for me since the only other oracles I use focus specifically on animal teachings and energy. But I appreciate the art, the theme, and the relevance of the messages represented on each card. I look forward to using it more as we descend into fall!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Even Mosquitos Have a Place in the Cards

I dedicate this post to my children, but in particular to my younger daughter, Lourdes.

I was sitting on the couch this evening as my older daughter, Isabella, was settling into a rhythm of chopping, seasoning, boiling, and sautéing what would later become our dinner. (She's only fourteen, but she's got skillz!) I was sifting through my Deviant Moon when I started absent-mindedly rubbing my ankle. After a few moments I realized that it was itching a bit more than what's normal, and upon closer inspection discovered a fat welt on my leg, courtesy of a Floridian mosquito. We have a couple of months to go until they cease to frustrate all and any attempts to sit outside and enjoy the weather (though I admit I've received exponentially fewer bites this year as compared to the last two put together, so perhaps I shouldn't complain too much).

As Lourdes sat next to me creating a house for her new rubber lizard out of an empty box of Always, it came to me: how would Tarot describe a mosquito?

Before you roll your eyes and start thinking that I have way too much time on my hands (which I really don't, I swear) I will say that it seemed perfectly reasonable at the moment. After all, we use Tarot to describe people and events all the time, and there's nothing more pervasive and universal than the experience of the mosquito, so why not see what the cards have to say? I went right ahead and shuffled and pulled, and when I flipped the single card over, I started to laugh. I showed it to Lourdes, and said, "Hey, look, this is what a mosquito looks like in the Tarot deck!" She started giggling. If you think there could possibly be a better card than this to describe a mosquito, I challenge you to post it in the comments below:

Deviant Moon - P. Valenza

Yes! The Page of Swords reversed! (I love how the cards have personified the bug by using a court card ;-) This Page is irritating and pesky and carries a sharp poker. Need I say more?

Well, I will, because the Deviant Moon version of this Page offers a lot toward a particularly accurate description! He's dressed mostly in red, reminiscent of the liter of blood that was slurped out of my leg earlier today as I was trying to figure out the best way to harvest the Saw Palmetto from the backyard. He wears an eye lamp which clearly symbolizes the fact that mosquitoes can always find you, no matter where you hide, and no matter how many layers of clothing you wear; just close your eyes and imagine the gentle humming whine in your ear when you're trying to go to sleep at night. They have a one-track mind when it comes to the hunt (look at those hypnotic eyes!). And as a final note, it's an air card, and flying is the mode of transportation that most mosquitoes tend to favor.

So, there it is! Tarot has spoken, as clearly and efficiently as ever ;-)

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Herbs and the Wildwood

I've been studying herbal healing for quite a while now, and it's something I find extremely rewarding and enjoyable. There is nothing quite as satisfying as hand-mixing a personal blend of elderberry, elder flower, red clover (or any other appropriate herb, root or berry) into a gently aromatic and tasty tea…with health benefits!

I remember quite vividly my first encounter with the power of herbal medicine: I was in my second year of high school and was feeling a rather "backed up" (ahem). I decided to take a cup of senna leaf tea from my mother's cupboard, doubting it would really have any particular impact on my system. Its taste was pleasant, and shortly after drinking it I went to bed. The next day was one of the most embarrassing days of my life. My intestines whistled and rumbled throughout each of my classes, and I was sure that everyone could hear. I had to run to the bathroom at least three different times, which was humiliating, to say the least. But I learned a really good lesson - herbal medicine really works!

I have a small herb garden, do some wildcrafting, and purchase the rest of my dried plants and roots from a local metaphysical shop. My library has expanded over time to include a nice array of books on both healing and magical properties of various plants and roots, as well as a multitude of preparations from infusions and decoctions to tinctures and salves. I suppose my Queen of Pentacles aspect is in full glory when I'm digging my hands in the earth tending my garden, and just as much so when a child comes down with the sniffles and I sift through my bundles of leaves and flowers to find just the right combination to help them start to feel better.

Likewise I take great pleasure in crafting grisgris bags to address an array of energetic or material lulls, whether financial, career-oriented, or even issues related to embracing self-love and heightening self-esteem. Herbs are a gift from nature that help heal us and improve our lives in so many ways!

As with all things, herbal study is an ever-evolving practice. I will never stop expanding and growing, and truthfully still consider myself a novice to the art. I was moved to pull out my Wildwood a couple of days ago, and as I was sitting with my cards I decided to pull three cards regarding my path as a medicinal and magical herbalist:

Wildwood Tarot/Will Worthington

Balance ~  8 of Stones ~ Pole Star

XIV Balance is closely related to the Temperance card in more traditional Tarot, and is a card of alchemy. In the DruidCraft Tarot this card bears the name "the Fferyllt," and features a woman standing over a cauldron mixing potions, such as what a healer would do. In the Wildwood two dragons, red and blue, curl around a tree creating a shape reminiscent of the commonly used medical symbol, the caduceus, (which itself is a misrepresentation of the original rod of Asclepius, the Greek god of healing - but I digress!). I was pleased to see this card because it has such close associations with healing - it felt like a confirmation of the path I'm on.

Next I was not at all surprised (and in fact really happy) to see the 8 of Stones, a card of apprenticeship and long-term learning. This is a card of study and acquired skill, supporting the potential for mastery of the topic in question as long as plenty of effort and energy is dedicated to the process. The man in the Wildwood image is carving stone lamps, though it very much looks (to me) like he's hard at work with a mortar and pestle! 

Finally, another healing card punctuates the line of three, the inspiring Pole Star. The Star is a light in the darkness. The Wanderer enters the deep wood where visibility will be low. There will be much to see and learn, though it may be incremental - with so many trees, perspective is limited. But the path is taking the Wanderer ever onward, and the Star is a hopeful symbol that all is as it is meant to be. 

I was very moved by this reading. 

Now, time to head to the library ;-)

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Taroscopes for September 2014

For the month of September I decided to use the Deviant Moon deck, which I haven't used in quite awhile despite owning both the bordered copy and the borderless version (signed by Patrick Valenza, no less!!). Maybe I'm trying to get into the autumnal frame of mind, or maybe I just felt like shuffling this lusciously smooth set of cards. I'm not sure, but here we go!

Capricorn - 6 of Wands: You know how when cats are "in a mood" they flatten their ears and look entirely unamused by life? That might be you this month in many regards, but especially when it comes to work. Just do you, act with wisdom, and know it's only temporary!

Aquarius - Queen of Swords: If you're tempted to shoot from the hip, don't. You are savvy and astute - hey - you're the Queen of Swords (air sign!)! Use your gift of discernment this month even if it hurts. And don't forget to LAUGH!

Pisces - Strength: You got this. Whatever hurdles you may have on your plate this month, know that you have the fortitude to overcome them all. Use your inner compass, and tap into your inner light.

Aries - 7 of Wands: If you find yourself in the position to defend your perspective or stance on an issue, the forces are with you. You're fire incarnate - show 'em what you got!

Taurus - 4 of Swords: Rest, breathe, take care of yourself this month. Make room in your life for healing space, it'll do a body good!

Gemini - 6 of Pentacles: Give and take, give and take, this is your mantra this month. Balance is the key, particularly when it comes to doling out energy and that hard-earned paper. If the car ahead of you in the drive-thru lane buys your coffee, don't forget to pay it forward!

Cancer - Page of Cups: Love and be loved, heal and be healed. You've had a long summer, and hopefully last month you managed some rest and recuperation. Now it's time to welcome the possibility for new and positive changes. Be alert for happy news this month!

Leo - 2 of Wands: Sometimes you just have to stop thinking: take a risk, jump in and give it everything you have. You're a fire sign, and this is a fire card - what a great match for rallying forth toward a new vision of what you want to manifest in your life.

Virgo - King of Swords: Don't try to do it yourself this month - you may actually benefit from outside advice and guidance. When in doubt, get a second opinion. If this is a man in your life, he's probably not going to be easily convinced, so stick to your guns and be sure you know all the facts.

Libra - 9 of Wands: It may feel a bit like you-against-the-world in September, but it won't last forever, so keep that in mind. In fact just when you think it's time to throw in the towel, things will likely start to improve for you. Stay focused and take care of your energy!

Scorpio - Page of Pentacles: Congratulations to you, if you've just begun a new job or program of study - stick with it and you'll be successful! You may receive some pleasing financial news this month, so keep all ears open.

Sagittarius - 5 of Cups: Regret sucks. It's a process, and it's one you'll make it through in one piece, just be sure to allow your feelings to flow outward and onward. Remember that it will get better.