Monday, March 30, 2015

The Sun Vs The Rain

Spring is favourite time of the year, and one of my favourite cards out of the 22 Arcana, is the Sun.

I can not think of a more hopeful positive card that speaks of the life force. I couldn't have drawn a better card today, as my dear friend, lost another dear friend. It is a big loss for her, and especially for her friend's family.

We would never survive without the rain, and the sun. They need one another, and this is why things grow.  Well that's obvious you might think, but my point is we also need them both, like we need light and dark, life and death. The Sun transforms our darkness into light.

In order for human beings to love, and appreciate life, and how we cherish those we love, death gives life meaning.  We are filled and left with precious memories of the essence of those we hold close, in the small of our of hearts. This closeness can't be taken from us, and stays with us always. Those we love, live deep within in our hearts, always, and the sunlight of the Creator shines upon them, and like the sun, they watch over us.

No one wants to see another hurt or suffer. Death is something we all experience, it causes us to be acutely aware of our own mortality, and we must let those we love, go. Even though we know death is a part of the cycle of life, it doesn't make it any easier when we go through this experience. I think most of us would agree, that death itself isn't so difficult as suffering.

I know it may seem strange to be talking about death when the Sun card is so life affirming, but there is always the another side to every milestone in life, and with every card. The celebration of life is what I take from the Sun, with the knowledge that I can also accept death as part of life, even though I don't much like it, I believe there are worse things than death.

The story in Clarissa Pinkola Estes book, Women Who Run With The Wolves called Skeleton Woman has helped me to better understand death. I can't say we are exactly friends, death and I, but we are not enemies either, so that's a good start I think. In the mean time, I can, and will enjoy the sun, and all that is has to offer and give.

Skeleton Woman - Egg Tempera, 2011, Catherine Meyers

Sunday, March 29, 2015

The Empress

The Major Arcana card of the Empress or Demeter follows and completely trusts her inner voice, vision and values. Her connection to the good earth is deep and strong. She loves passionately, lives by her instinct, and intuition.

Living a life of abundance and growth is paramount to her, as she is the Mother of all and desires to provide for her children who dwell on the earth both spiritually and physically.

The Empress urges us to listen to our own instinct, and to the practical wisdom of nature. If we do not, we can loose our way, becoming bitter and resentful.  She reminds us that the cycles of life are always changing; we must accept and adapt to beginnings and endings.

The Empress is the Wild Woman, the Wolf Woman, La Loba the one who howls, and finds her own pack.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Ace of Cups - I Don't Want To Be Steven Seagal

Getting on an emotional merry-go-round can wear a person out, or may alienate others. It can be very superficial in that emotion that is not tempered with wisdom and insight, can not be sustained and can make for feelings that escalate into despair, and hopelessness. At some point there has to be action taken in order to bring about positive change.

Not every one is comfortable showing emotion or seeing any one else emote. I heard it said many years ago, feelings are just that, feelings not good or bad. Why so many feel compelled to make a judgement about feelings seems a strange thing to do, but I think we all do it at some point. Mostly I think we place this judgement on ourselves.  Why do I feel that way?  I shouldn't feel like that. I wished I felt differently. I'm stupid for feeling this way.  Sound familiar?

The Ace of Cups (Aphrodite) is a force of nature, it's about having your cup overflowing with emotion, and having an outpouring of feelings that well up within, and can't be contained.

It was once explained to me by a therapist that emotions are not something we should get into the habit of suppressing. If we knowingly, and continually suppress our emotion, they eventually become repressed, and we are unaware they even exist in our subconsciousness. She compared this to a old mattress with springs that pop up. We keep pressing them down with our hands and feet. Very quickly we run out of appendages to push them back down, and this repression is what leads to mental health problems or issues with our physical health. This made so much sense to me, and I knew I had to make changes within myself, and in my life.

I learned as a young child, that showing emotion was not acceptable, and so I shut down. I continued on that way into my adolescence and adulthood, until my emotions became deeply repressed. Eventually could no longer control my emotion. This is when I had to seek help and I am grateful everyday of my life that I did.
I heard it said once, ' if you do not deal with your emotions they will deal with you.' As much as a do like Steven Seagal, I don't want to be like him.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Five of Swords - Dude, Don't Be Tellin' Me What To Do!

As much as I do greatly appreciate the historical and cultural value of my Mythic Tarot deck, some of these Greek gods not only have attitudes, they can bring out the attitude in me, knowing I have 'issues' with authority. Many of these Greek gods remind me of what John Bradshaw would call 'undisciplined disciplinarians. I think most of us have had experiences with these authority types, especially in school.

I love being my own boss, as an artist, and a Tarot reader, as it gives me freedom, to have the option to choose. You may have a certain amount of freedom working for someone else, but generally you do what you are told, or you risk getting the old sack-eroo, the heave-ho, the boot! YOU'RE FIRED!

It is easy for many of us to feel intimidated by, or maybe resentful toward authority. We can either respond,  react passively or aggressively. Many of us grow up in families were we don't learn how to resolve conflict. The fight or flight reaction is often the usual behaviour pattern we are accustom too. Assertiveness is not in our vocabulary, and we don't really know what it means. Either we are afraid to stand up for ourselves, or we might become verbally aggressive or abusive, even lash out with fisticuffs, as my father use to call it. He was good at fisticuffs!

Here we see Orestes, his body language is in a physical position of powerlessness, small and seated on the ground. He is being told in no uncertain terms by the towering Apollo, that he is obligated to avenge his father's death. Orestes dreads what he must do, though every part of his being wishes he could change his fate. The balance of power is not balanced at all in Orestes's favour.

Obligation has no redeeming qualities in my opinion. Choice rarely if ever, comes into the equation. It means we do things because we are being forced in one way or another. Having the will and want to do something is an entirely different situation. The old proverb or adage 'you catch more flies with honey than vinegar' comes to mind.

I always used to get my underwear in a big knot when I'd hear the word obedience, because I equated it with obligation. There was always going to be someone telling me, trying to guilt me into what I should or shouldn't do. Obedience had nothing to do with wanting to, or the willingness to, behave a certain way.

Today, understanding, and knowing the distinction between these two words, has made all the difference,  enabling me to strengthen my relationship with the God of my understanding, who is not the merciless authority and the balance of power has been shifted. It has allowed me to better accept, and to understand my own limitations and capacities.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Five of Wands - Rumplestiltskin

Jason is faced with having to fight the dragon, in order to obtain the Golden Fleece. He has his lover and helper, the sorceress Medea close by his side.

There are many creative ways to fight, to defeat the monsters and dragons in our lives. Having our wands a flame, shines a light in the darkness so we can see clearly what we are up against, and to find our way.
Naming our monsters, speaking their name to another, is much like describing our feelings, which can help us to understand what they are. This gives us the opportunity to know how to cope, and they somehow loose their power over us, or we can rid them from our lives.

This reminds me of the Brothers Grimm fairy tale about the of the manikin Rumpelstiltskin, who gave the young maiden gifts, enabling her to spin straw into gold for the King who eventually promised to marry the young maiden, which he did, making her Queen. The final gift to the little man, was to be her first born child, if she could not speak his name, as she did not know what it was. It was then that the young Queen summoned a messenger to spy on the little manikin, to find out his name.

When the young Queen speaks his name, the spell is broken, and the young Queen is free from the emotional bondage of the manikin, and is able to keep her new born child. The manikin tore himself apart in his rage, once she spoke his name aloud, Rumpelstiltskin.

"The devil has told you that! The devil has told you that," cried the little man, and in his anger he plunged his right foot so deep into the earth that his whole leg went in, and then in rage he pulled at his left leg so hard with both hands that he tore himself in two."

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

King of Swords-The Snow Warrior

I was never so happy to see what I was hoping and praying for, a King of Swords to come along and save the day! This was the card I drew yesterday, and with the Spring snow storm, that left 6-10 foot drifts completely filling in my long lane, there he was, he came, he saw, he blew snow for two hours! I never got around to posting because I was digging my car out and busy having a meltdown. I felt completely overwhelmed with next to no food, the amount of snow and I was getting a little freaked out feeling very alone, seemingly without anyone to help me.

After having a typical what I'll call 'cups' kind of morning, and into the afternoon of waiting. I was so very grateful to finally find someone to get the job done, to free me from over ten days of snowbound Snowmageddon! I don't have many moments like this, and I don't want to apologize for feeling this way. It's just not a good feeling for me, when I do find myself in such a state of mind.

Sometimes all we need to do is vent, and talk things out, to share with another who can help to remind us of, and who can exhibit those kind of King of Swords characteristics, in order to bring us around, and this is just what a did, and was able to find those who could be that King of Swords for me.

The King of Swords is a clear thinker and with leadership skills. He knows how to approach problems logically, and directly head on without hesitation, he gets the job done, calmly stays the course, in a rational manner. The King of Swords knows what to do in a crisis. He will defend the defenseless, and take a vehement stand for what he thinks is right. He excels in his strategic skills, and reminds me of a Neutrino.

Having great intellectual capacities, combined with high principles, and a strong idealistic sense of justice, this determines all of his decisions. He may appear somewhat distant and detached emotionally, but he feels deeply and is a very compassionate individual.

"No one is too rich to receive, and no one is too poor to give."

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Wheel of Fortune - Change - I Want No Refund On My Misery

Life is hard, and a person has to be resilient. The one certain thing that never changes in life, is change. We are either moving forward or backward in our personal growth, we never are standing still. Our situation, behaviour, and lives are always changing, sometimes for the good, or not. Life is easier if I can find a way to accept, adapt and even welcome change.

The events that take place in life can feel very unfair, lucky, charmed, or just plain ruined, due to choices made, or circumstances that are beyond our control, and often, we are left with many questions, as to why this or that has happened, and wondering what the heck is going on, and what it all means.

In the Mythic Wheel of Fortune, this Major Arcana card speaks directly to this. The three women, the Moirai, are standing at the womb, and the tomb. These women represent the lunar phases, crescent, full, and dark, also symbolize the three stages of life, youth, middle and old age. They are performing different tasks relating to our lives, past, present and future.

Whatever happens in life, we can choose to believe that there is an orderly plan behind it all. If we choose to believe that these random events are not related to the idea of the 'Other' within our own psyche, it is difficult to make any sense of life, and can leave one feeling hopeless, and possibly bitter, looking for someone to blame. Regardless, the Wheel of Fortune heralds our inner journey, that brings growth, and creative change. There is a new phase in life, when we can create our own destiny, and a living a life we love.

My philosophy of life is to strive to be honest with myself, and with others, to keep an open mind, and to have a willingness to be willing. This approach enables me to feel confident in what the Moirai on the Wheel of Fortune have in store for me. If I change my mind, I am certain my misery will be refunded.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Four of Swords - Reflection

My immediate impression of this card, the Four of Swords is one of the wholeness that comes from being centered through meditation, giving focus and clarity of thought.

The breath is essential for relaxation, because we need more that 80% of our oxygen for our brains to function properly and this gives us the ability to concentrate. Many of us breath shallowly from  the top of our lungs instead of diaphragmatic breathing which gives an optimum amount of oxygen.

The Four of Swords brings the four directions and the four elements to my mind, all that give balance, and strength. In the business of life it is more often than not, that we either think we can't, or don't take or make the time to get centered so we can find some good, orderly, direction, through withdrawal and reflection. It is a good habit to develop and one of the main reasons I have journaled for over thirty years.

Here is Oretes is in exile in Phocis. He has been forcibly exiled, regardless is peaceful and contemplates the four swords set in a pattern before him. Whether we are forced into some kind of exile or if it is voluntarily, we can choose to take advantage of this time for reflection, meditation and some self-examination, and hopefully return as a better person.

I think of Nelson Mandela who spent so many years in exile, only to return to society as a person who set a great example and mentor to so many.

"Especially for those of us who lived in single cells, you had the time to sit down and think, and we discovered that sitting down just to think is one of the best ways of keeping yourself fresh and able, to be able to address the problems facing you, and you had the opportunity, also, of examining your past." - Nelson Mandela

Friday, March 20, 2015

Queen of Pentacles - Spring Has Sprung Me Loose!

This Queen of Pentacles, who is the image of feminine strength (Omphale) is most happy on this Vernal  Equinox, Spring day, especially because the Normanator came with his Tractornator and plowed out my driveway! He's made mounds and mounds of snow, and it was a beautiful sight to see on this first day of Spring, the Vernal Equinox! Embodying the element of the earth the Queen celebrates the seasons and it is fitting that I draw this card on this particular day.

 Today is a full solar eclipse, with a super moon. It doesn't happen often the next one I believe is in the year 2020. This day is said to be the the most powerful in 2015 in astrological terms. It feels like it to me! Bring on the flowers!

Oh there may be more snow out there than I've ever seen but it matters not, when your mind is full of  gratitude, for the Normanator,  Spring, the earth, and the Queen of Pentacles.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Five of Wands - Don't Worry Even Monsters Have a Soft Underbelly

Struggling with, and fighting our dragons, demons or monsters, whatever you want to call them, is what the Five of Wands is about. Some are of these critters are bigger, badder, and meaner than others. They all call for certain skills, weapons, and the means to overcome them, if not completely defeat and eliminate them. Then, there are others that will go away for a time, giving you a reprieve, only to return in the future, maybe bigger, badder and meaner than ever. These can be the most troubling and stressful. They are like the thing that came to dinner, and wouldn't leave.

Being prepared is the best defense. We might even create our own monsters. In this case, prevention is worth a pound of cure. Many of us can be our own worst enemy. So finding a way to avoid that by addressing a particular personal problem, perhaps in the form of a network or support group, can make all the difference to our happiness and peace of mind. Sharing a problem with another, can help lessen your load. We can't always solve our problems on our own.

These are not easy circumstances to deal with, but all part of the journey of life. We sure don't need being placated to, with maudlin platitudes. Solutions, and resolutions are certainly needed, but sometimes what we really want and need is a lend of an ear, someone we trust, who can sit and listen. When we talk to another person, it can help create some kind of order to our world, and often we can find an answer to problems, having talked it out. Reaching out to ask for help is the hardest part for many of us.

The three things that have helped me with my struggles and my monsters.

1. Having a sense of humour, is always therapeutic.
2. I'm human, and so is everybody else, not super human, as much as we might try.
3. Drop the false pride, because humility isn't humiliation.

Don't worry, even monsters have a soft underbelly.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Page of Wands - Having Something To Look Forward To

 The Page of Wands is the perfect card for me to draw today. The element of fire is representing the creative stirrings with feelings of unease and restlessness. Oh ya I'm feelin' it! Bring it on!

It's another day of snow, after getting walloped by yet another storm, 30-40 cm on top of the 30-40 cm that was already down from the last blast. Some folks actually got 80 cms! It's been said that this has been one of the most intense Winter's in 20 years. Needless to say, it is really getting to people, and here in Nova Scotia we've all gone a little doolally with seemingly no Spring in site. But this card gives hope in knowing Spring is coming, and it's just a blip, in relation to the great snow globe of life! All these weather events are relative. Actually what concerns me more than anything is climate change, which may be the new normal. I am a hopeful person, but this serious problem leaves one feeling a little dubious about the future.

Wands are full of growth, energy and action. So, I swept the floor, rearranged some furniture, and re-potted a few plants and of course as always blogged. It's not exactly going after the Golden Fleece, but considering my present level of ambition right now, it's as good as it gets today! No snow shoveling until tomorrow, as I just can't face it again right now. If we get the next storm on Saturday, they are calling for, which might be a snow/rain event, it will make for a beautiful mess and three storms in one week.

As you can see, my preoccupation today is with this Winter weather, and Spring arriving in two days. It's not what I was expecting. So close yet so far away! But this card heralds good news, that is on it's way! Right now it is a ' hurry up and wait' scenario, but the snow can't last forever!

The ram that this Page of Wands (Phrixus) is riding, is in fact the Golden Fleece, when it was alive. Phrixus is escaping. The ram was sent to rescue him, and his sister Helle. Phrixus was to be sacrificed to Zeus that was the curse put upon him by the phantom woman Nephele, who had married King Athamas,  Phrixus and Helle's father. Zeus was having no part of this plot, sending the ram to rescue Phrixus and his sister, the same Golden Fleece Jason, and his Argonauts were in pursuit of finding. Phrixus in turn gave the ram to Zeus as a sacrifice for having been recused.

Phrixus looks like he is in a desperate state to get moving, and so he should be, because his life depends on it. He's already lost his sister, whom he tried to lift onto the ram when escaping, but sadly she fell into the sea, and perished.

When we are wanting something badly enough, we too may be in a desperate state. Perhaps because we are afraid that we might not make it, and fear failure. Our lives may or may not depend on it, but we may feel that our happiness does. Creative energy moves us toward change, gives us the ability to move ahead, and  overcome.

Not unlike Phrixus, we have no way to predict future outcomes or what is ahead. To be sure, there will be trials, difficulties, and sacrifices made, challenging us to grow. These will only increase our confidence. Regardless of our circumstance, it is a good thing to be motivated and inspired to have a goal, and live the life you love, and deserve. This is transformation.

I have heard it said, the definition of an alcoholic is someone who has to have something to look forward to. As a recovering alcoholic, I think this may be true, and makes sense to me. I must say, I am really looking forward to the year ahead, to Spring, and it can't come fast enough. I won't stick my head in the snow bank.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

King of Pentacles - Loyalty and Devotion

The good Earth is the King of Pentacles domain, and he is wants to be the master of all he surveys. He is deeply connected to the land. He puts his hand to the plow, his eyes steadfastly on the goal ahead, and he doesn't look back.

In the Mythic Tarot he embodies King Midas, representing human ambition, success, and being in a position of having material wealth.

In spite of his love for worldly ambition, and all it's trappings, he is a good man who is very,  loyal and devoted to his friends, family, and partner.

He loves to be surrounded by his animal critters, and the friends that will help him accomplish his tasks. We see in the background he has helpers ready to assist him, and his goat is close by his side.

This King needs to balance out his life, as he can easily get caught up in working too much, loosing sight of his what is truly important. We are not human doings, but human beings. The King of Pentacles needs to remember this.

A friend to all living things, it is suggested that he works the land, involved in agriculture, embodying the true lover of all things in the natural world.

I found this great picture on Pinterest I've posted below. Someone thought the image reminded them of the King of Pentacles. I have to agree.

Monday, March 16, 2015

The King of Cups - The Guy With The Big Heart

The King of Cups (Orpheus) is a deep feelin' kinda guy, and he has a very big tender heart. Helping others is what he most values above all. Being both priest like and healer, with a generousity of spirit, people might think they can take advantage of him. They would be very much mistaken, as he is neither unintelligent nor naive. Often folks equate the ability to feel or display deep emotion, particularly in men as weakness. This is not true, it is in fact a strength.

This loving and compassionate King fills his life with creative activities like poetry, music, art, that speak to, and touch the soul. He is open, honest, and wants to help others in what ever way possible. Living life by way of the heart, enables this King to be an example to others, he is a leader for change, making the world a more compassionate place.

He urges us to pay attention to matters of the love and the heart, as it is truly the most important thing in our lives especially, through relationship with ourselves, with others, and with the God of our understanding. We are all interconnected to each other and to the earth.

In Greek mythology, Orpheus is described as being the wounded healer, because he cannot seem to help or heal himself, which is a dichotomy. He is disconnected from himself. Many people who are in the helping professions are the same, but they cannot go on this way, as it is an imbalance, and can lead to burnout or ill health.

At some point I'd like to think that King Orpheus will get himself into recovery of some kind, in order to heal his wounds, so he can be the best kind of healer and priest that can have the kind of intimate relationships he so longs for in his life. This recovery is about making a kind of soul bargain, that Deepak Chopra  speaks of in his book, Path To Love. A soul bargain means we have a trust and faith in things unseen, believing that there is a greater good that loves and cares for us, and that there is a plan. This faith will enable Orpheus to let others into his heart, allowing them to love him, as he loves.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Three of Cups - Relationship Myths and Realities

The Three of Cups is a celebratory kind of card, with a big but. Celebrate but understand that there is hard work ahead. Psyche, she is looking very beautiful, like a princess, content, and satisfied with this ideal situation. She doesn't see her groom yet, as in a true realistic encounter. Eros still exists in a dream state to Psyche, a situation with which she is content, and you could say she is very headily in love, with love.

The water nymphs flipping and splashing their tails about in the water, have raised their cups in a toast to the union between Psyche and Eros. The bright Sun in the background signifies life giving growth, full of joy and promise for the future This wedding however is not all hearts and flowers. It is more likely than not, a romantic fantasy, and a kind of enchantment now, but sooner or later, reality will come crashing in, as it does with all newly weds when they embark upon a new life together, within the bonds of marriage.  In our blind love, we believe that this certain special one, is going to make us happy, and much of the time naively, our own egos are at the forefront of the relationship, and what it will give to us.

 Many entering into marriage have unrealistic expectations, unreal dreams, often based on the 'myth' of what marriage is, that in reality painfully disappoints. Young girls are indoctrinated with this kind of myth about being a princess searching for her prince to save her. When I was a little girl I adored everything about Snow White, which was so removed from reality, as are so many of the promoted myths about love and relationships especially found in the powerful messages of the media. It's not all Walt's fault!

I think of what Jean Vanier says about the reality of love and marriage.

 “The word love has been so abused by publicity and advertisements that we no longer know really what it means.”
― Jean Vanier, Eruption to Hope

"The reality of marriage is that it is a place where a man and a woman are called to sacrifice their own egos on the altar in order to create one body..." 

 “Flowing from this union, source of a plenitude of joy, the love of the couple reveals itself through the daily acceptance of the limits and faults of each other and in mutual openness. It is this acceptance in and through gentleness, kindness, forgiveness, confidence and the desire to see shining in the other the warm light of the Spirit of God that becomes the great sign of the merciful love of God for man and His incessant forgiveness.”
― Jean Vanier, Eruption to Hope 

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Six of Cups - Experience, Strength and Hope

Most of us have heard our parents, grandparents or others nostalgically share stories about the past, and what it was like back in the day. We can learn a lot from these stories. Now I find myself at the an age where I reminisce, am nostalgic about the past, and I like to share my own stories. This is human nature of course to go back in time, in our mind.

Having and making memories is a beautiful thing, especially when these are shared with others. They bond us, and are the glue that can cement our relationships, reflecting our identity back to us. Of course there are always positive memories, along with the negative. Regardless of what kind of memories, if I can accept and embrace them, I can process them and turn my memories into a learning experience, becoming a stronger individual. I can then help another by sharing my own experience, strength and hope.

It isn't good for our psyche regretting or stuck in a time warp with you 80s hair, or wishing our lives away for the old days. We can't be fixating and starring  at the past, however we can't close the door on it either, pretending it never happened.

Here in the Six of Cups Psyche finds herself emotionally abandoned, mysteriously by her husband Eros. Despite her loss, she has learned something about herself, and has come to terms with what has taken place. She no longer has regrets or remorse about her unrealistic expectations, unreal dreams, and  her great disappointments concerning her lost love Eros.

Psyche has come to this place of serenity within herself. Now she can move forward, building upon future goals. Her past has been tempered, and strengthened, into an emerging promise, that is achievable. The past leads to a future dream that is still possible.

Friday, March 13, 2015

The Queen of Swords-Warrior Woman

This Queen of Swords impresses me very much, and simultaneously she does not. I am not so drawn to her, like I am the Queen of Cups, that lives life from the heart and intuition. Nonetheless I admire The Queen of Swords greatly.

This Queen, strikes me as being distant and aloof, sometimes appearing cold to others. Her  intellect, and ability to always maintain an objective, detached perspective, takes precedence over her emotion. Don't be fooled though, she feels deeply, and is a very passionate, compassionate woman. Her aloofness is really her armor that protects a very tenderhearted broken heart. She is really a wild woman in the sense, that she walks her own path and is her own person. Still waters run deep, and what appears to be, may not be all there is to the story, as much lies beneath the surface, within the depth of this woman's personality.

There are always occasions and circumstance that this kind of detached approach to life is positive. This can be problematic, if an individual is implicitly devoid of feelings and subjectivity, this leaves a person suspect, relying solely on empirical evidence of things unseen, such as intuition, the psyche and love. It makes for difficult intimate trusting relationships.

You will not win in a war of words with this Queen, and you don't want to cross her, as she will cut you with her quick wit, and sharp tongue. She expects much from others, like she does from herself. This can be manifested in a character defect as perfectionism, and having unrealistic expectations of others, that they can not idealistically live up to.

Inherent in the Queen of Swords seems to be is a lack of trust in the self, in others, and in the God of her own understanding. Reason, rational thought, and logic are the tools she uses to solve her problems, and how she reaches her conclusions. It is difficult for her to let go of her rational mind, and to take that leap of faith that is a prerequisite for trust.

Understand that I am somewhat biased, and admittedly a bit jealous of her ability to be so intellectually, rationally strong and emotionally detached. I know I am not so much like her, but she has some very admirable personality characteristics I relate to, and I try to emulate and adopt her mental strengths, and her positive traits.

The Queen of Swords is a very strong warrior woman. She is the embodied mythic figure of Atalanta the Huntress, who in the past was dealt a bad hand of cards, regardless, she has thrived, not in spite of all these struggles, but because of them. She has developed an internal fortitude, that has given her an independence and the self-reliance to take care of herself. In this way she is very close to my heart, as I have known and know, many beautiful strong woman like her, and I identify with her very much.

Wolf Woman-Catherine Meyers

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Eight of Pentacles - Apprentice of Life

Sometimes I find myself often thinking about the same thing. I keep returning to a certain reoccurring thought or concern. I believe this is a result of having lessons I am still attempting to learn, only on a deeper level. I also think it is an indication that I haven't completely mastered the skill of letting go of something that needs to be addressed. I really don't mind being an apprentice, because I have learned that it is important to involve myself in life long learning.

Daedalus is portrayed here once again as the apprentice. He is diligently working hard at his skill through dedication, and having a focused energy toward the tasks at hand. There is no sense of instability, but perhaps a sense of being in a kind of mid-life crisis, as he has already been an apprentice and has achieved a level of success.

He is perhaps feeling a bit stuck, as he is already established, but there is still work ahead. This card indicates being a quick study. A commitment to and application of hard work and effort there is reward gained in even stronger work habits and circumstance, resulting in positive growth, change and success.

At some juncture in everyone's life, we hit some kind of mid-life crisis which leaves us perplexed. Depending on the attitude we have approaching this phase of our life, will determine it's outcome. Having a positive and enthusiastic attitude, I believe will make all the difference. We are all apprentices of life.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

City Stories With The Winnepeg Tarot Company

Matt Myers-Art Nouveau Tarot Deck

One thing I absolutely adore about the Tarot is the combination between the design, illustration, art, artists and the cards. Here is a wonderful project that took place in the City of Winnipeg, Canada.
It is a perfect example of how the cards directly involve story and artists.

City Stories with the Winnipeg Tarot Company from Winnipeg Arts Council on Vimeo.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Five of Swords - 'You're Not The Boss of Me!'

I have been, and still am to a degree, a person that does not like authority. I believe I am not alone, when I say, I don't like being bossed around, cause I say to myself, 'you're not the boss of me!'

Being a very independent person, when I look at this card, the Five of Swords, it immediately gets my bristles standing on end. The figure on the right impresses me as an authoritarian, aggressive, superimposing figure, waging his accusatory finger.

My question this morning was regarding an experience I had yesterday while visiting good friends. This person showed up at my friend's house shortly after I had arrived. They seemed full of resentment and on the offensive, because I had refused their business offer, I was not at all interested in. I was neither rude nor even impolite toward this individual. I simply made myself clear was not interested, and it certainly was not my intention to offend her, and walked away.

I did what I thought was the best thing, and withdrew from this conflict, though I did not feel peaceful. I did not create, nor did I add to an already tense atmosphere.
This morning I was looking to the cards to give me some direction, though I knew deep within myself, what the answer was, and drawing the Five of Swords gave me some very affirming clarification.

I do have to say I wondered why this situation was bothering me, and I found myself somewhat preoccupied with what had happened. I will say I am not used to this kind of reaction, and I know that this will happen from time to time when you come across reactionary individuals like this. It just takes me off guard completely, as I don't expect it. I kind of go into a bit of a state of shock, and it takes me time to process just what happened, in order to try and understand it. I am glad to have my blog, and Tarot cards to help me do this!

So in this card we see Orestes, seated on the ground looking vulnerable and a little afraid facing Apollo. The message to Orestes, is to face his own limitations and what is before him, whether fair or not. For me, it is also about accepting the limitations and imperfections of others, even if I don't like their faults, regardless of how they have treated me. I can't take this personally. I need to know and remember that I have a thick skin. We all have a dark side that we must accept, but also we must believe in our light, to over come the darkness. There is "perfection in life's messes" as Anne Lamott says.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Six of Swords - Insight and Understanding

Here we see a man, Orestes the young prince, standing in his boat. Everyone knows you should never stand in a boat because, well we all understand what could happen. But many still do it anyway. He is impervious to the rough, turbulent waters below, and stands stalwart, resolved in his intentions with his eye on the goal to get to that island ahead..

Many years ago I went to the island of Newfoundland to teach art in an extremely remote part of Placentia Bay, an out port called Petite Forte. Only a population of 100 people lived there with the population of one black lab and several wild ponies.

After our long voyage we we finally disembarked onto the wharf from the coastal boat we had to get our art supplies into a dory. While unloading our art supplies we had to get them into the dory to row across to where we would be staying. I was all rigged out with my gumboots and so with a big box in hand I put one foot on the wharf and one foot into the dory. Brilliant. When the dory started moving, I was moving farther from the wharf, with my legs apart. It immediately dawned on me what a stupid thing I'd done. I knew that it was either the art supplies that was going into the drink or it was me. Needless to say our supplies were found very dry and intact, while I clung to the slimy wharf  still in my gumboots that were filled with water. I was very relieved, and happy to still have our much needed supplies intact and had a good laugh over my baptism by fire to this grand place of Petite Forte!
Needless to say I'd learned my lesson, and retained my self-respect and dignity, though perhaps my ego was a little bruised, I could now get on with my adventure.

We need to be brave to face the consequences of our decisions, and sometimes we need to be prepared to be humbled, before our path becomes clear with insight and understanding..

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Page of Cups - Love Vs Ego

This Page gazes into the Golden Cup, seeing his mirror image. He is transfixed and enchanted by the beauty of his reflection. Seated on the bank of the river, he appears to be harmoniously surrounded by abundant, lush greenery, and flowers, with trees that look like they are embracing and drinking in the water, representing the spiritual realm.

Cups are connected to emotions, relationships, friendships and romance.
The Page of Cups is living in what looks like Paradise, but he does not take notice, as he is completely absorbed in looking at his own image in the cup. This Page is the young nymph Narcissus, who has fallen in love with his own reflection. He has been unaware of his own identity until now.

Trees for me, always symbolize friendship, and like the trees the roots of friendship run deep, and are all connected deep within the earth. Humans have a direct relationship with nature, which transcends into a spiritual relationship, as we are all part of the earth. It is impossible to separate ourselves from this fact, though in today's world, there exists a big disconnect, as we humans see ourselves as superior to nature. We some how believe that our primary purpose is to use, abuse, and exploit the natural world, and the good earth in whatever ways that are expedient to us.

The Page of Cups embodies the gentle beginnings of self-love, as opposed to the vain love that Narcissus represents. It is true, we are not able to love another, nor fully participate in a loving relationship, if we cannot love and accept who we are. The other extreme is about our egos being so self-absorbed, thinking we are superior, which never allows for happiness, peace of mind, or living a life in harmony with nature, where we are caring for and being good stewards of the world we live in.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Three of Pentacles - Compentent Professionalism

The Three of Pentacles is always a good reminder to have integrity, not just toward having a work ethic but in all aspects of my life.This card always speaks to me of completion, with the knowledge that there is still work and effort needed, to be put toward the tasks ahead. In other words, it is having a professional standard and attitude. This card also speaks of competency and hitting your stride.

I can't afford to take my successes for granted, and think I can now simply sit on my laurels. I must understand that I can not do whatever I want, whenever I want, without consequence, as this is a fatal flaw in any early success. At the same time I need to be cognizant of my limitations.

In today's world it seems difficult to find those who have a competent professional attitude toward the work they do, living life with integrity and principles. Many are very happy to take your money without completing a job or doing a task that is well done. We cannot however expect others to have professional integrity if we don't expect this from ourselves, and manifest it in our lives.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

The King " Gimme " Pentacles

When I draw the King of Pentacles, embodied by the mythic King Midas, my mind promptly goes to the materialistic, capitalistic, corporate, money mongering, fat cats. There is more to this card than meets the eye. Oh there are those that are greedy, craving status, power and position, that seemingly have the Midas touch, similar to the King of Pentacles, and these types fit my description well, however there always exists two sides to every coin and card, both positive and negative.

King Midas was wise and pious, so it is said, and everything he touched turned to gold. He was ambitious and more that willing to work hard for what he wanted, in terms of material comfort and wealth. He was certainly never apologetic for his materialistic nature, and generally put this ahead of everything else, in particular his relationship with himself, others and with the gods.

He showed kindness to a drunk, Silenos, who was tutor to the god Dionysos, The Fool, so in my estimation he can't be all bad. However Midas seemed oblivious or in deep denial  about his own dark temptation toward corruption, and living the 'high' life that has preoccupied and consumed his thoughts.

Although he wanted recognition from others, which is what we all want, simply to be accepted by our peers,  loved by those we have relationships with. We all need to have our most basic and strongest human need met, and to have a sense of belonging, but King Midas got his priorities all screwed up, and has lost his perspective.

After showing kindness toward this drunk, Silenos, King Midas was rewarded by Dionysos, who granted him one wish. He wished for everything that he touched would turn to gold. Midas gave no thought, and had no foresight into what he was wishing for. The great King was starving to death because even his food and drink was turning to gold. Finally after some amusement by Dionysos he took pity on Midas and released him from the golden touch. He had learned the lesson about his own greed and reaching out for help, he managed to save himself from himself.

Love those you belong to.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Strength In Numbers - Kindness Can Turn Into Miracles

I drew the Strength card this morning after asking a question on behalf of a life long friend, who is going through some serious health problems.

When I see this Strength card I immediately relate it to having a personal strength of character, and having the ability and presence of mind to overcome adversity. After some very hard lessons and many years of trying to do things on my own, coping and fighting against weakness, I finally realized I didn't always have to be strong, and that it was perfectly acceptable, and even desirable to allow myself, and more importantly to accept my own weakness, and to ask for help when I needed it.

People are mostly, and usually more than happy to help in whatever way they can, if we will only ask. Suddenly we find that our weakness becomes strength, because we have had the courage to reach out.

Cutting my nose off to spite my face, having a stiff upper lip, or a stoic attitude, is not strength, it is false pride. We delude ourselves into thinking that we can do everything all on our own if we are just self-reliant enough. No one can be strong all the time, and no one is an island. We need one another, and we need to care for one another, as the Creator loves and cares for us. The old adage 'Strength in numbers' is very true, as is 'United we stand, divided we fall'. You often hear these repeated time and time again, because they are so very true.

Although it is important, that we ourselves ask for help, we in turn do not have to wait for another, to ask us for help, if it is needed. Never underestimate kindness. Kindness can turn into miracles, and we all could use a miracle, and it is a good thing to ask for one, or why not even ask for two?

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Seven of Swords - Walk a Mile in My Guile

The Seven of Swords represents the application of mental energy toward what is called guile.This word caused me to look up it's meaning, which is often defined as having a negative connotation, related to treachery, lies, deceit and dishonesty to gain a desired end.

This card shows Orestes creeping into the palace at Argos, and about to commit matricide.
That said , the Seven of Swords gives a more accurate portrayal, and embodies the word guile. Here it is ambivalent in it's meaning, neither positive nor negative. Depending on the situation, and the individual's intentions, this is what the definitive answer is based upon. The Seven of Swords is calling for using brain over brawn.

I tend to like this definition of the word guile, from the Oxford Dictionary.

"Sly or cunning intelligence: he used all his guile and guts to free himself from the muddle he was in."

Most everyone at one time or another has had to use their guile and guts to free themselves from their muddles. I know I certainly have, on more than one occasion. Life can often require us to do this, where we need to be cautious, and sometimes the means can justify the ends, regardless if there exists a question of whether it is wrong or right. In some instances it may very well save our lives, or possibly the life of someone else.

I am not referring to destructive or immoral, manipulation, using or taking something good, and making it bad for our own purpose, especially when it involves taking advantage or victimizing others who are innocent. 

We may find ourselves feeling uncomfortable and conflicted ethically, but sometimes life may require that we develop the attributes of compromise, in order to survive, or to be successful. 
Taking the tactic of bullying our way through, will guarantee that we will achieve nothing. Or we can choose  diplomacy, tact and wit, as being the better option, that will likely prove to result in a best outcome.


Monday, March 2, 2015

Three of Swords - Recovery

A very disturbing and sorrowful image, is the Three of Swords. Initially you may wonder, what in the heck has gone wrong here? Why in the world has this individual (King Agamemnon) laying in his bath, been impaled by three swords, and he obviously has been murdered. It looks like a very abyssal and hopeless scenario, however this card is about moving beyond pain and suffering. It doesn't mean it won't be painful anymore, but it's about healing.

It is a relief to have everything out in the open, and recovery is not only possible, but has now begun, because the facts have been faced, though still painful, we can find strength, become more compassionate people, having made way for restoration and healing as we are no longer in  that state of paralysis, as embodied in the proceeding Two of Swords.  There is no room for continued resentment. It is a time for forgiveness toward others, and especially toward ourselves.

Our experiences help us to accept and love ourselves as whole people, with strengths and characteristic defects. We are not waiting for someone else to rescue us, and can now begin to learn what it means to become the heroine or hero of our own lives. Resolution is now possible, and the healing begins.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

The Moon - Hecate The Goddess of Enchantment

Drawing the Moon card gives me a very good feeling. I've always been in love with the Moon. I think it may have something to do with the fact my Moon is in Pisces, according to my astrological chart, which makes intuition my best friend when I am right, and my worst enemy when I am wrong. Oh how true it is!
My Gemini Sun sign causes me to perhaps appear as a little eccentric or what I call a little wiggy.
The faces of the Moon is associated with self-esteem or one's identity, but I am quite comfortable in my wigginess, and don't much care about what people think. My loyal friends accept me as I am.

Finally the full moon is coming up this first week of March, on the 5th. I don't know exactly why, but I feel relieved and am looking forward to it. It has to do with the unconscious and intuition, which I am feeling very connected with these days. I've been trusting both more, and with more trust, comes an increase in intuition.

There is nothing certain in this card as Hecete, the goddess of the Underworld, and Apollo’s twin sister as Artemis, embodies confusion, uncertainty, the changing faces of life involving past, present and future, even the dark night of the soul, which we all experience at some point in our lives. From out of our confusion, the crab of truth will emerge.

Hecete controls the hidden things of nature. The light over her head symbolizes how she illuminates and brings wisdom, through faith and hope.

      The Moon

      ND, like a dying lady lean and pale,
      Who totters forth, wrapp'd in a gauzy veil,
      Out of her chamber, led by the insane
      And feeble wanderings of her fading brain,
      The moon arose up in the murky east
      A white and shapeless mass.
      Art thou pale for weariness
      Of climbing heaven and gazing on the earth,
      Wandering companionless
      Among the stars that have a different birth,
      And ever changing, like a joyless eye
      That finds no object worth its constancy? 
      - Percy Bysshe Shelly