Thursday, July 31, 2008
Occasionally the most hidebound amongst us has an epiphany; the realization that what we thought were rock solid opinions and beliefs have shifted. It is a little scary because we've usually based a lot of opinions and actions on those beliefs. It can be as simple as thinking pole beans are the only way to grow green beans, fighting the idea of switching to planting of bush beans tooth and nail...and finding bush beans were a whole lot easier and nicer to grow, pick, and clean up at garden's end. Or it could be life changing, shifting from Hindu to Catholicism for instance.
I'm reminded by this card we finish our physical growth at about 21, our emotional, spiritual, and mental growth stops when we draw our last breath. There is no limit to the depth and width of that growth except for the blocks we throw up ourselves. I welcome that growth and actively seek it.
"Every day do or learn something that will inch you closer to a better tomorrow." ~ Doug Firebaugh 1948-
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
This card will always bring Windsor to mind, the big gentle dog we recently lost. We have been very lucky with our dog choices, and I say lucky instead of wise because they chose us, not the other way around. They've been smart strong well mannered Beta dogs. An Alpha dog regardless of size is leader of the pack and runs the house and its occupants unmercifully, always the one in charge. A Omega dog hides under the bed at the slightest noise, cowers when touched, submissive urinates when approached. Getting a dog without taking those traits into consideration is bringing home 10-15 years of problems.
I'm reminded by the stance and expression of Strength that neither of these figures are expressing control or submission, they are working or playing together as equals. You can see that if command was needed the human figure would have it, but only because the lion is Beta by nature. Should we be blessed with another dog I intend to keep these traits in mind. I guess I'm Beta too; I don't take any crap from anyone, and I know I can be in control without being in command.
"The cyclone derives its powers from a calm center. So does a person." ~ Norman Vincent Peale 1898-1993
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
I've often thought "I wish I could start over, knowing what I know now". I suppose I believe I could avoid some foolish or harmful mistakes. Yet there are very few of us that don't repeat some of our mistakes thinking circumstances have changed so the results must also.
I'm reminded by this card all the knowledge and intelligence in the world won't help us if we don't learn from our mistakes and refuse to repeat the actions and behaviors that have blown up in our faces. Card readers see this a lot, our number one request for readings involves unhappy relationships; we don't have to fan the deck and pull cards to say "if you continue to do what you've always done, you will always get the same results". Yes, bad things do occasionally happen to good people, but if the same bad thing happens over and over we must learn to look to ourselves to change the outcome, not something or someone outside ourselves.
"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." ~ George Santayana 1863-1952
Monday, July 28, 2008
I have six people in their 80's and beyond with whom I deal on regular basis, so I've been observing the creep of age and the ravages of time from a close viewpoint. Keen minds that begin telling stories in loops, rejection of reality, joint replacement, failing eyesight, complicated medical and drug situations, regrets and grudges, loss of spouse, loss of home, loss of independence...Regardless of what kind of fail safe system they've built in preparation, by this time, rich or poor, there are breeches in the system.
I'm reminded by this card that in this life eventually everything comes down to time and self. All the money in the world won't save a failing mind or body, at some point it becomes a matter of pure personal determination until that final bit slips away. Whether we've been good or bad parents in the end makes zero difference, some children disappear, some step up to the plate. Higher power or not, there are no miracles in the 9th hour. I've learned a lot of valuable lessons in my position of observer, one of which is you don't grow stamina, iron will, the ability to get going when the going gets tough overnight. You live your life that way, and I despair for my generation who have had the best of the best but no backbone and determination. I expect we are in for an unhappy ride to the grave. There is no fail-safe plan, no one to protect us, no one to blame. Just us, facing age. Have you got what it will take? Are you laying a line of defenses of your own?
"I want to die young at a ripe old age." ~ Montague Francis Ashley Montagu 1905-1999
Sunday, July 27, 2008
You've heard the term full plate for being busy, having a lot of responsibilities? This young Page of Cups seems to be momentarily stunned that his plate is empty. The lower in pecking order the more people to tell you what to do and here he is with a free moment. He has chosen to use his by taking a break in a beautiful area with stunning vistas, water sweeping majestically and blue sky all around. He has also chosen to take a beautiful Imari porcelain bowl, empty, to remind him to enjoy and appreciate the free time.
I'm reminded by this card and the bowl, that so often we spoil the time that should be devoted to refilling our internal well by dragging to-do's, wanna-dos, and gotta-do's right along with us. There is something to be said for Zen...be in the moment, not in front of it or behind it.
"In order to create, we draw from our inner well. This inner well, an artistic reservoir, is ideally like a well stocked fish pond... If we don't give some attention to upkeep, our well is apt to become depleted, stagnant, or blocked... As artists, we must learn to be self nourishing. We must become alert enough to consciously replenish our creative resources as we draw on them - to restock the trout pond, so to speak." ~ Julia Cameron 1948-
This week's deck is the long out of print Ukiyoe Tarot, 1982, published by Angel Co., Ltd. Japan; art by Koji Furuta who recreates the 'floating world' of Ukiyoe art which was popular in the 17th and 18th centuries.
Saturday, July 26, 2008
Or a full purse. Card number 77 sort of corresponds to a 9 or 10 of Coins but at number 77 that doesn't make much sense; when working with this deck you pretty much have to put aside what you might think you know about tarot and go with Etteilla's flow.
I'm reminded by this card life is that way too. Just when we think we know it all, have everything in order, we find we naturally seek something more and we are sure we will be perfectly contented...then. Not much likely. Not many humans are content to have things in a complete state--too stationary. We have brains and talents and they ask to be used, exercised ere we grow stagnant. Enjoy the pleasure of looking forward to being surprised by ourselves, it's one of the best parts of life.
"One must marry one's feelings to one's beliefs and ideas. That is probably the only way to achieve a measure of harmony in one's life." ~ Etty Hilsum 1914-1943
Friday, July 25, 2008
Numbered 3 in this deck and titled Discussion/Water, this card resembles the number 18 Moon Card in standard decks. It is a beautifully rendered one, notice the light and shadowed pillars, alert and sleeping canines, clear and cloudy sky. Our crustation looks like he is headed for the water this time rather than leaving it. Etteilla says it could mean gossip or even slander, or reversed, to expect rain on our picnic.
If I give gossip and slander any thought at all the mental image I get is 2-3 small minds yakking it up at the office water cooler or blocking the isle at the grocery store. Nothing better to do than talk about other people because they've chosen small dull lives for themselves. Or political candidates. What possesses the candidates and their staffs to start tearing down their opponent rather than talk about themselves and the issues and their platform. I've never met a fellow voter who says "yeah baby, I love the mudslinging part of campaigns". I think we have two fine presidential candidates this year, both with weaknesses and strengths. I sincerely hope they don't sink to the grocery isle depth of gossip and slander.
I'm reminded by this card, once again, that it is always important to seek the facts, not be swayed by sentences that start with "I heard..." or are voiced by someone with an ax to grind. Gossipers are right down there with child molesters in my book, because the harm they do can discolor a person's life forever.
"Fire and swords are slow engines of destruction, compared to the tongue of a gossip." ~ Richard Steele, Sr.
Thursday, July 24, 2008
Rob and I cross paths at lunch time. Seems like one or the other of us is always on a weird shift. Next month it could be something different. We also live near a mill town where the major sources of employment run 24 hours a day, so you always find out what shift someone is working before you make plans that might include someone else.
I'm reminded by this card that the irregularity of our life is one of the things that has oddly enough given us one of our best traits, flexibility. No matter what time a client needs me I will and have been there, no problem. Rob can lie down at any time of the day or night and go to sleep. He said when we got married that you just learn to do that in a war zone and that ability is what makes him able to do his job. We see new employees come and go all the time, they just can't hack it because they aren't getting any sleep.
"What doesn't kill us makes us stronger." ~ Friedrich Nietzsche 1844-1900
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Card #63 follows the Ace of Swords format, for our author Etteilla in the reversed position it indicates a pregnancy that will have to be hidden and the sword represents the Sword of St. Peter. The Ace of Swords could certainly mean unwelcome news so for the first time this week we have an agreement.
In Etteilla's (1738-1791) day pregnancy was pretty much hidden anyway, not flaunted about like today. I laughed when I saw the French word for pregnancy, grossesse. "Eeu, Gross!" is what my mind shouts when I see a woman in her third tri-mester wearing skin tight knit top and low rider pants around town. I don't think there is anything charming, pretty, womanly, sweet about it...only gross. About as charming as the fat plumber with the tool belt pulling his pants down to half-mast.
I'm reminded by this card that each generation sees themselves as the only generation that has discovered sex, drugs, and music. In truth each generation has simply rediscovered a way to seem unique and it is part of growing up. In the mean time I'll avert my eyes and think about the reaction to Woodstock and my generation. "Eeu", my mother said...
"Our opinion of the world is also a confession of character." ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson 1803-1882
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Number 18, Traitor, is described as Judas Iscariot. Upright, betrayal by others; reversed, betrayal by self. This is sometimes associated with the 7 of swords or perhaps the Devil in a standard deck.
I can only think of one time I was betrayed by someone else and I'm sure I've spoken of it here. But by myself? Don't know as I've ever thought of it that way but surely it is a self betrayal to do what we laughingly refer to as 'just no will power'. I'm taking this sudden insight very seriously. If we are swearing off smoking, drinking, drugs, junk food, chewing our nails, lousy partners...looking at it as a betrayal of self when we choose to fall off the wagon is sobering business. Because it is always a choice. And we are the biggest traitors of all.
"For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men." ~ Marcus Tullius Cicero 106-43 B.C.
Monday, July 21, 2008
Numbered as 5, the art on this card corresponds with #21 the World card in a conventional deck. And if we have the World card all will be well. Or as well as we are willing to make it.
I'm reminded by this card that incredibly often we choose to not have things go well. We ignore the joy available to us to grouse and weep over things that happened weeks or years ago. We gripe about the flowers we didn't get rather than the gift that did arrive. Much like my post this winter about the farmer's barn being cleaned shiny bright when he was down with pneumonia and his total response was "You forgot to wash off the shovel". We really must learn to lift our eyes to the light rather than continually concentrate on the fertilizer at our feet.
"Every thought is a seed. If you plant crab apples, don't count on harvesting Golden Delicious." ~ Bill Meyer 1892-1957
Sunday, July 20, 2008
When I'm away working at our farm the only thing I miss from home is doing my tarot blog. This week's deck is totally different from my other tarot decks; one I've wanted for a long time and which is usually way over my budget limit. I got lucky with this 1969 edition of the Grand Etteilla Egyptian-Gypsies Tarot printed in France by B.P. Grimaud. These cards are meant to be read with both reversals and uprights which I don't normally do, and the little volume that comes with it gives all manner of good fun in the author's interpretations of the basic nature of each card.
Dear me. I'm reminded by this card that there are a great number of good, true, honest tarot readers, and people like me who enjoy studying the history and symbology of tarot, and many who just collect decks for the amazing range of art. And there is the other side of the coin, those who put up their shingle with the sole purpose of using the cards to part a fool from his money. If you want a reading get a recommendation from a friend. If you get a reading, a real reading you are in for a true treat, and will probably enjoy going back one or two times a year there after. But...if you get a reading and the reader says you will be able to leave this dreadful curse upon you behind...if you pay $250 for 3 blue candles and an additional $300 for getting your aura cleansed... Laugh in their face, be glad you have some common sense and leave immediately with your money and brain intact. Thus endeth the sermon for this lovely July evening. I can hardly wait to see what the Grand Etteilla will bring us tomorrow.
"One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we've been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. The bamboozle has captured us. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back." ~ Carl Sagan 1934-1996
Friday, July 18, 2008
Well, here we are...me, 2 wild eyed cats, and my little Pom Pembroke, off in a few minutes to try to keep up with my 90 year old father-in-law for a few days. I may even loose all financial common sense and treat myself to a latte for the road.
I'm reminded by this card that even though it is a working weekend, we will always have fun because we stop to smell the roses. Driving our lives without a break makes us shell-shocked and bug-eyed, lets not go there.
"Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under the trees on a summer's day, listening to the murmur of water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time." ~ John Lubbock 1834-1913
Thursday, July 17, 2008
That's what my dad would always say when we'd ask for something beyond the budget...When my ship comes in. Six people living on his income as a cement truck driver. We had everything we needed. Today that life style would be considered spartan. In a way, dad's ship did come in. He had a strong Teamster's pension, which continues to provide well for my mother, 19 years after dad is dead and gone.
I'm reminded by this card that when my own budget feels pinched that mostly we make our own ship. We live in a different world from any of the generations that went before us. Computers, telephones, microwaves, movie players, cup holders and what fills them in cars...we neither knew of nor needed these things. If my budget is short I need only look around me to see where my ship went.
"Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted." ~ Albert Einstein 1875-19
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
There you are, sleeping along just fine, then your eyelids pop open. Suddenly you are beset by the problems of the world and your mind slips into high gear; spinning out of your control. I remember this time four years ago when the first subject of any paper or news broadcast was bird flu. Sure, you remember that too. One of the things I worried about in the dark hours. Bless my heart, I even bought two cases of special masks. A friend kept telling me it was a ploy to keep our minds off Iraq during the election campaign. I thought right, conspiracy theory lunacy... but where did the bird flu go and who got elected?
I'm reminded by this card to write a note and tack it to my forehead. "Expose all concerns to the light of day. Most will shrivel and die, as sleep vampires should". But don't sell the masks.
"When one creates phantoms for oneself, one puts vampires into the world, and one must nourish these children of a voluntary nightmare with one's blood, one's life, one's intelligence, and one's reason, without ever satisfying them." ~ Eliphas Levi 1810-1885
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
I think being a top Royal must be a very lonely life. An elected official chooses the life, a Royal is born to it, the only way out is death or abdication. Constantly on view, every public action fodder for newspapers and water cooler conversations.
Never ever knowing if someone is your friend because of who you are or Who You Are...
I'm reminded by this card that I am daily thankful for who I am and the life I lead.
"What do you fear my lady?"
"A cage. To stay behind bars until use and old age accept them and all chance of valor has gone beyond beyond recall or desire." ~ J.R.R. Tolkien 1892-1973
Monday, July 14, 2008
Where in the world does that extra burst of strength come from when we think we can't do one more thing, walk one more step, stand the pain one more minute?
I'm reminded by this card of the miracle of our being. Our body's power to heal, our ability to learn, our willingness to get up and try one more time in the face of sure defeat. Inexplicable, but empowering and uplifting if we take a moment to appreciate the human spirit each day.
"I can accomplish far more than I have, and I will, for why would the miracle which produced me end with my birth? Why can I not extend that miracle to my deeds of today?" ~ Augustine Mandino 1923-1996
Sunday, July 13, 2008
This is generally a 'championship' card but this deck's vision is a little skewed and what I see is the carrot on the stick syndrome. I use the carrot/stick for myself sometimes when I have a rotten task and not much incentive. But when I see the general population being led this way my hackles go straight up.
I'm reminded by this card to think for myself, not be swayed by media, friends, and fear. If something needs a decision it is up to me to do the research, listen to both heart and mind, and recognize that it isn't often that people or situations can be perfectly resolved. And that is part of life too, perfection can be a goal but seldom is achieved.
"A man never reaches that dizzy height of wisdom that he can no longer be led by the nose." ~ Mark Twain 1835-1910
Tarot of the Magical Forest is a sweetly tender yet fey deck originally a Chinese publication and difficult to get, now republished by Lo Scarabeo, art by Leo Tang, 2008.
Saturday, July 12, 2008
Why the beautiful young celebrities of the day are dating the most repulsive young men? What is that all about? Uncombed, unshaven, uncouth, dressed like rag picker's apprentices. Says something about the self-respect of both parties.
I'm reminded by this card we need to love and respect ourselves before we can fully appreciate love for and from another person. Sounds so simple but it really is key to having a loving relationship survive and grow.
"Never violate the sacredness of your individual self-respect." ~ Theophile Gautier 1811-1872
Friday, July 11, 2008
My hands are tied can be a get out of a request answer, or it can be where we stand when any and every thing we try or need to do meets obstacles. Fighting city hall is an example, dissuading a loved one from tyeing their future to a loser is another example. Sometimes all you can do is stand there and watch the train wreck occur.
I'm reminded by this card that it is usually when a situation is connected with other people that we find our hands tied; and there is a good reason for that. Hard to stomach but we aren't always right, and our way isn't the only way things can be done. It is a perfect time to think outside the box, look for new resolutions, and/or to swallow our pride and do something someone else's way.
"The block of granite which was an obstacle in the pathway of the weak becomes a stepping-stone in the pathway of the strong." ~ Thomas Carlyle 1795-1881
Thursday, July 10, 2008
The ultimate goal, the highest happiness. Which has little if nothing to do with anything going on outside us and everything to do with what is going on inside us. We've resolved our issues and conflicts; worldly desires and petty annoyances are no longer part of who we have become.
I'm reminded by this card I have a long way to go, but one of the discoveries I've made is inner joy and temporary happiness are two separate things. I can be overwhelmed with sorrow or anger, and still have inner joy because it is a peace birthed from knowledge and growth. From letting things go that I can't or shouldn't change, from loosening the need to control, from giving up investing energy in things which are none of my business. How much time a day do you spend wondering or worrying about what someone else will think or say or do? How much time is spent in the pursuit of wants vs. needs? Let go of that and you are one giant step closer to Nirvana, The Highest Happiness.
"One who finds happiness with the Self, who rejoices the Self within, and who is illuminated by the Self-knowledge; attains supreme nirvana." ~ Bhagavad Gita
Wednesday, July 9, 2008
Aluminum cans are recyclable here and you can turn them in for cash. I often see gentlemen of leisure with enormous bags of them strapped to the back of their bicycle headed for the metal depot. It takes about 24 cans to make a pound. My mother-in-law took her cans in a few weeks ago and the price paid for clean returns was .56 a pound. Dirty returns pay less. She walks everyday and picks them up in the course of her journey. I once watched her spend two days getting a couple of cans clean so she could get the higher price. Her last payday for her aluminum was $22.89 for about 6 months work. She does it because she hates litter and because she knows the value of a penny. She could also buy and sell about anyone reading this blog. I'm tempted to ask her to leave them because she is literally taking bread from the mouths of street people but at 86 she is set in her ways and I do respect very much her daily concern for the environment which shows in so many ways.
What I'm reminded of by this card is the two days to clean a couple of cans worth not quite three cents each and diesel fuel to use the pickup to turn in her cache, 20 mile round trip, $5.00 a gallon. Being an entrepreneur I always think of the value or cost of time and not just dollars in pocket, but what that time value is in life hours. On the other hand she is happy, she is Green, and it isn't any of my business...it took me 59 minutes to write and research this blog post. Value to me? Priceless.
"Time is Money" ~ Benjamin Franklin 1706-1790 CNN
"Money is Time" ~ George Gissing 1857-1903 Boston Globe
"Your Money or Your Life" ~ Joe Dominguez 1938-1997
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
While searching the web last night for some thread, I ran across the site of a woman who teaches needlecraft skills popular in the 1800's for people who do Renaissance Fairs. In one of the photos was something that made me think "eeeuuuu, good grief, yuck". I was at the same time embarrassed by my reaction because it makes me absolutely furious when my boss does the same thing.
I'm reminded by this card when I see people that in my mind are not perfect, I have not walked a mile in their shoes and I in no way have the right to judge them. "Get over yourself Quirk, and tend to your own garden you totally imperfect fool."
"Perhaps our supercilious disgust with existence is a cover for a secret disgust with ourselves; we have botched and bungled our lives, and we cast the blame upon the environment or the world, which have no tongues to utter a defense." ~ Will Durant 1885-1981
Monday, July 7, 2008
Tia Dalma. If the bones say it, it must be so, right? Do you believe in fate or destiny? Or do you believe we make our own future by our choice of actions, absolutely nothing is foretold?
I'm reminded by this card, as yesterday's, that choice is what our time here is all about. Today is one more opportunity to choose thoughts and actions that will bring or keep us at the top of the Wheel.
"If you do not create your destiny, you will have your fate inflicted upon you." ~ William Irwin Thompson 1938-
Sunday, July 6, 2008
I've talked before about the Hanged Man position usually being one of personal choice rather than something that has been forced upon us, but sometimes changes come that happen in spite of ourselves and suddenly we find we've arrived at the Hanged Man position via the back door.
I'm reminded by this because when I went to scan my card the scanner made a funny burp and my first thought was OH NO...how will I do my blog? Because I've become dependent on mankind's machines to flesh out things. I have several books of daily draws done before it ever crossed my mind to do a blog. Didn't need a computer or a scanner, but I've drifted into it, found I really enjoy it, and now I've hung myself because I'm dependent on my dependable machines. Which is better? The old way? All I need is a pencil and a journal but no sharing involved with that, no feedback, no input that might give me a new way of seeing things. New is better in my book, but I'm glad to be reminded that as always, hung is a choice and my pencil and paper are right here beside me.
"There is no dependence that can be sure but a dependence upon one's self." ~ John Gay 1685-1732
This week I'm sharing a Argentinian deck, the Napo Tarot. Designed by the artist Napo and created by Betty Lopez, published in 1998 by U.S.Games Systems Inc. This deck has fully illustrated pip cards which are drawn in naive and charming water colors and titled in both Spanish and English; they depict the dress, habits and surroundings natural to both urban and rural Argentina.
Friday, July 4, 2008
I'm reminded by this card of the excitement of a new fresh start; I've had a number of those. And of choices that feel like they were forced upon me, how they are like too small underware...uncomfortable in every way. Far better to make my own way and be wrong than not choose at all (also a choice) or have the path pre-chosen.
Every year I live I am more convinced that the waste of life lies in the love we have not given, the powers we have not used, the selfish prudence that will risk nothing, and which, shirking pain, missed happiness as well. No one ever yet was the poorer in the long run for having once in a lifetime "let out all the length of the reins." ~ Mary Cholmondeley 1859-1925
Thursday, July 3, 2008
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
I'm a loner both by circumstances and choice, but there is a huge difference in choosing to be isolated and having to be isolated. And clearly, isolation has some of the qualities of suicide and death in how it impacts those whose lives we touch.
I'm reminded by this card that isolation by choice can be extremely selfish behavior and should be balanced with time given to those who love and care about us. Don't give them the grief of a suicide walking.
"Solitude vivifies; isolation kills." ~ Joseph Roux 1725-1793
Tuesday, July 1, 2008
We all know one, sometimes, yes, even we are one. Wound up tighter than a tick and when the slightest thing goes awry it is freak out city. From the outside looking in we shake our heads, think Crisis Junkie, and wonder why they don't just deal with it. From the inside looking out we wonder why everyone is so apathetic.
I'm reminded by this card that not everyone is born with the inner stamina to deal with turmoil, large or small. Sometimes reactions were learned by observation of how parents dealt with problems, and yes, occasionally it is a cry for attention. This Sleeper card recognizes that everyone has a need for an inner reservoir of strength to resolve problems calmly. When that reservoir is in constant turmoil we beginning running on an empty tank. Going nowhere at top speed. Let's stop, take 10, and regroup. Personally? I recommend yoga...Vivaldi's Four Seasons...sit on a riverbank and do absolutely nothing but observe...allow our mind, body, and heart to join and begin to work as one. For us and not against us.
"There cannot be a crisis next week. My schedule is already full." ~ Henry Kissinger 1923-