On the road, I've been listening to a CD workshop by Carolyn Myss based on ancient Alchemy, in this case turning our lead thoughts and more importantly, mindset, into gold.
I'm reminded by this card our actions determine our future but our thoughts determine our life. I've got a couple of lead beauties that need to be at the bottom of an abyss, not floating up to the surface of my brain, tainting my day. I'm not sure what I think of Myss, but I'm glad to have a new viewpoint toward a couple of old memories.
"The struggle of the mind to keep itself free from every sort of bondage, to remain curious, open, unsatiated in all its relations with nature; is tenfold more difficult than the cultivation of a stable, satisfying point of view, but a thousand fold more precious." ~ Gardner Murphy 1895-1979
The Spiral presents this 5 as a spirited competition, one against several, as we might find in a business presentation, judged shows, apportioning a family estate.
As a quilter I'm reminded by this card of entering my work in major shows. These only have cloth in common with your grandmothers quilts on beds for warmth. Show winners can take home machines in the $5-10,000.00 dollar range and cash awards in the $5-50,000.00 dollar range. With side dressings of teaching, speaking, authoring, and pattern design income resulting from those awards. These quilts can take a year or more to complete and every stitch is important. That kind of competition, even if only with yourself will upscale your abilities far beyond what you thought you were capable of.
you're not making mistakes, you're not taking risks, and that means you're not
going anywhere. The key is to make mistakes faster than the competition, so you
have more chances to learn and win." ~ John W. Holt, Jr 1948-
The two figures in the background seem to be made of clay, inhuman, not noticing. Yet the figure in the foreground clutches his trove and flees blindly. The clay people brought to mind the story of the clay creature Golum, who over a period of years proved the Jewish citizens innocent of a horrible Passover crime.
I'm reminded by this card stealing something sets off this heart-clamoring fear, acknowledged or not. A pencil, an idea, credit for someone else's work, incorrect change in the spenders favor, silence when truth could clear the air; mean word where a kind one would do, there are a million ways to steal spirit from our own soul and heart and be confronted by a personal Golum instead.
thief believes everybody steals." ~ Edgar Watson Howe 1753-1937
We see the craftsman working and all seems to be progressing well, as long as it is round coins he is required to make. But what if he got a new order requiring square coins? Or fat coins? Would he be stupefied? Uncomfortable? Get mad and quit his job? Or inspired to break free and try something different?
I'm reminded by this card today it is my task to sic a client's doctor on a nursing home staff. They are going to kill her if they don't open up to new practices. So far I've been stonewalled for a week and to my shame I've been too distracted to focus. Today is the day the whirlwind hits the door.
it. Solve it quickly, solve it right or wrong. If you solve it wrong, it will
come back and slap you in the face, and then you can solve it right. Lying dead
in the water and doing nothing is a comfortable alternative because it is
without risk, but it is an absolutely fatal way to manage a business." ~ Thomas J. Watson 1874-1956
Steventon's High Priestess has been many things to many people over the eons, made of myths and Goddesses across spiritual paths to become whole again as Sophia, or Wisdom.
I'm remind by this culmination of wisdom, we see the surgeon this morning. Everywhere you look you see pink ribbons indicating funds going into cancer research. In this blog a few months ago I said I was sick of pink ribbons, they've sunk to nothing but a marketing icon. Then I walked into my favorite quilt shop and discovered the owner was battling breast cancer. So I've shut up about the pink ribbons, and now I'm expecting to benefit from that self-same research dollars. Dr. High Priestess, I hope you know your stuff and hold all the accumulated wisdom of my newly acquired tribe.
I lie awake at night, and ask, 'Where have I gone wrong?' Then a voice says to
me, 'This is going to take more than one night." ~ Charles M. Schulz 1922-2000
Although a card denoting tragedy, I love this rendition from Kay Steventon's brush because it is actually illustrated. Up until the Rider-Waite deck of 1909 tarot minors were much like playing cards; 8 coins, 4 cups, and so on. That 1909 deck is a wonder but the 3 of swords and 8 of wands were what I think of as lazy cards. None of the hidden symbolism or story-behind-the story that make the other cards evocative story tellers. We could spend all day telling stories about this version.
I'm reminded by this card plain pips life is probably how we manage to survive adulthood as well as we do. If the swords (mental) are front and center the wands (physical), cups (emotions), coins (earthly goods), are probably lying low in the background. A crisis can clarify our focus and that is always a good thing, like spring cleaning.
unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It
turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity." Melody Beattie 1948-
The Spiral Tarot is the deck for this week, 158 page companion book and card art by Kay Steventon; published in 1998, US
Games Systems. Kay is based in Australia, and often lectures and teaches
there. The Spiral is based on archetypes from Middle Eastern, Mediterranean, and
Authurian myths, and includes symbols from the Kaballah's Tree Of Life.
In a world where what is in today is out tomorrow the Abalone remains steadfast. Estimated to go back five hundred million years they remain a favorite edible and a jewelry, button, and tool staple. I have two gallons of mother-of-pearl buttons, you can tell instantly the difference from plastic ones; colder, heavier, almost greasy, more there, more ancient. Unopened you'd never know what lies within for Paua on the outside are just dull rocks amongst other dull rocks.
This Light Holder of the South card asks us to do one of the most difficult things for humans. Stop blending in, step out into the light, and be. Be real, be enlightened, be the truth of your highest potential.
condition of an enlightened mind is a surrendered heart." ~ Alan Redpath 1907-1989
The Owl speaks of the winds of change...
From the book: If Owl has flown silently into your life you have reached a significant moment in your journey. It brings to you the power of the North Wind, to wisdom born of the ancestors. Do not be afraid of all that now opens to you. Accept the gifts of those who have gone before because they offer a wondrous cloak of knowledge.
This card, this day, reminds me I am now on the cusp of a fight for my life. Each pink ribbon I see will highlight all those that have both fought and won, and fought and lost. I honor those men and women today.
"Those who live are those who fight." ~ Victor Hugo 1802-1885
Daily Draw: Wisdom of the Four Winds Oracle ~ Lightning
Eight million bolts a day. Making the ozone molecule which creates the shield protecting earth from sun. Subtitled Awakening, this is the first Shadow Holder drawn this week; it encourages us to take our mind and heart beyond the mundane and embrace the extraordinary truths which have been right in front of us all along.
I'm reminded by this card I'm mostly embarrassed by my 20's, my 30's were so busy as to be barely remembered, my 40's were mostly confused, knowing I was missing something but not knowing what, where, or why; there I began making tentative steps toward true life and an authentic me. I love my 50's. I've taken the time to search inward and uncover facets of the heart or mind which can be gently polished, reflecting the Lightening of Awakening. I run to the future, I wouldn't go back a single day for anything. And I feel like I'm 30 again.
"When lightning streaks across the sky
Look beyond its power to your own." ~ Barry Brailsford
The New Zealand whitebait are tiny fish who lay their eggs in fresh water streams which are swept out to sea where they are born, and wait until nature calls them home to the stream once again.
I'm reminded by this card of how good it feels to be committed to something, either by choice or by nature. How surprising almost, to find we have a natural instinct or talent that unerringly moves us along. My personal school or tribe are quilters...what is yours?
"Step into your river
Accept its cooling flow
Open to the dream
And with the waters go." ~ Barry Brailsford
This card is subtitled Knowledge. I was recently asked by Mary Greer to share some thoughts about Quirkeries, here is my response. More knowledge than you wanted, but it covers a bit about the 'why' of my tarot blog.
(who is Mary Greer? A gifted and knowledgeable tarotist, one who is willing to share with the world)
Mary. thank you for your interest in my blog, In your email you asked:
Would you start with these questions and add anything else you’d like to talk about:
Did you start out with the three sections or experiment before you settled on them?
Where do you get your quotes?
Do you ever miss a day? What do you do then?
What’s the main thing you’ve learned by doing this?
I think what I’ve won/learned from daily draws is 98% destroying the keywords I worked so hard to learn. That is the way I learn and they were invaluable in the beginning, but as my knowledge and confidence grew the need for keywords faded.
I shuffle, fan, and draw at random and looking back through my paper record I’ve drawn (for example) the Fool, the Knight of Wands, the Ace of Coins maybe 25-30 times. I can go to my blog, search for those cards and see 25-30 different interpretations of those cards. For me, that kind of stretching is invaluable. It also underscores the value for me, of multiple decks = multiple viewpoints.
Someone whose mind goes to standard keywords reading my blog would wonder what orifice I pulled my observations from but at the end of the day, those observations show how flexible the cards are.
As for nuts and bolts, each year I choose something new to learn. One year it was tarot. One year it was blogging. I wrote and deleted SO many posts but in the course of that I learned a few things. To be successful at blogging I needed a core subject that I found endlessly fascinating. Tarot fit the bill, there is literally no end to the study of the history and symbolism and psychology of the cards. March 2007 I hit my subject and stride. Looking back at that month this morning, I still remember some of those draws, particularly the Druidcraft 7 of Swords. And the very first post, the pudgy redhead from the Fairy Tarot, so much like me at the time.
I don’t know when I started adding the accompanying quotes but I know why the idea crossed my mind. I like to choose a daybook most years, and I admired the quotes Sarah Ban Breathnach used in her book Simple Abundance. When I realized my blog was turning into a personal daybook, the idea of using quotations followed. I have learned SO much in the course of seeking out quotations that mirror my feelings each day, yet are not a clone of my written words. Everything from Confucius to Homer Simpson and there is always something to learn about the author and what makes their life and writing worth quoting.
Missing days..yes, at one point my computer died so there was about a week missing. For my own information I listed in a post what cards those were, then went forward.
I spent 3 years elsewhere taking care of my father in law and his farm. There are some posts missing there, in the beginning. I missed the stability of my blog and tarot time (I do it the very first thing with my morning cuppa) so I bought a laptop to use there. As a side issue the draws from that time are sometimes all that kept me going, particularly the last eight months or so when he and I traveled home hospice time, when each day pieces of his mind dropped into the abyss. Without my draws to focus my mind and heart it would have been more tragic and less comforting for both of us. I’m not even sure I could read back through those posts. At the time I also had a quilt blog (KalamaQuilts, at the bottom of my sidebar) and made a lot of funny posts about the same situation.
Mary, this is probably both more and less than you wished to know, but it is what wordsmithing supplied today. I’d like to thank you for your research and books in which you’ve shared so much with the tarot community.
All the best, Sharyn Woerz, Quirkeries
"The authentic self is the soul made visible." ~ Sarah Ban Breathnach 1947-
This is the Polynesian Rat...I know, run screaming from the room. But wait, as with everything else in life, there's more, and much to be admired. If food is found, everyone is told. If some are too weak to swim, the strong form a raft upon which the tired or small can rest. Mothers often share a communal nest and nursing care.
I'm reminded by this card if we are open to lessons there is much to be learned from nature. Only the strong survive and pecking order are two terms foreign to ratlife. That alone lifts them above human stature in my eyes.
it comes to having a central nervous system, and the ability to feel pain,
hunger, and thirst, a rat is a pig is a dog is a boy." ~ Ingrid Newkirk 1949-
Who are we? We wear so many hats and so many faces in the course of our life...when the White Pine is drawn we are asked to reflect on the core us...the deep down mini-me, the who we are when the world is stripped away.
I'm reminded by this card to reflect on where my roots are planted, what nurtures body, mind, spirit; to concentrate on becoming. Becoming who and what I really wish to be.
"You wait for fate to bring about the changes in life which you should be bringing about yourself." ~ Douglas Coupland 1961-
Confucius joins us today with swords and cloak marked with I-Ching hexagrams of knowledge. Five completed courses hang behind him; confusion to order and completion with caution remain to be wielded.
I'm reminded by this card I have used both of these swords several times this week and am thankful for the long-term knowledge and education I have that has managed to cut through confusion with emphasis on caution. There is still an eighth sword hanging over me, but in truth this week now reflects that beautiful World card drawn at the beginning.
universal order and the personal order are nothing but different expressions and
manifestations of a common underlying principle." ~ Marcus Aurelius 121-180 AD
The Pages in this deck are what Poole envisions as Elementals, in this case the Page of Wands is represented by Unicorn served with a side of Dragon and Snake. That dragon reappears as the Ace of this suit.
I'm reminded by this card fantasy and day dreams are often what children get chided for but they play a large part in how we deal with the real world. We have to imagine ourselves being able to do something before it can ever happen, regardless of age. That Inner Page has value beyond gold in that respect.
"There are wild elephants in this country, and numerous unicorns that are nearly as big..." ~ Marco Polo 1254-1324
I was called out in the middle of the night on a client emergency. I thought it was anxiety driven rather than health driven so we just talked. We remembered some of the crazy things we've done and laughed until we cried.
I'm reminded by this card many times a gift isn't something you can hand someone. It is invisible, has no worldly value, and can't be exchanged. But a gift is a gift is a gift.
"Each day comes bearing its own gifts. Untie the ribbons." ~ Ruth Ann Schabacker
What a gorgeous card. Poole's book says "Determined and angry warrior that cuts out the cancers in the kingdom of truth".
This card reminds me I have some ultrasounds tomorrow in the big city because my mammogram in the little city came back with some oddities. I shall go as this card because this is how I want to be when I grow up.
"We determine ourselves by the meanings we give to situations." ~ Alfred Adler 1870-1937
This King, who can harness lightning, animal-speak, and fly, is kneeling. I don't believe I've ever seen that in a tarot king before.
I'm reminded by this card Kings are seldom elected, they are born into the job and radiate a thinly veiled arrogance. Even elected officials don't kneel except perhaps metaphorically for a vote or grudgingly when caught in a Weinergate. Now this would be an interesting King to meet.
"Yesterday we obeyed kings and bent our necks before emperors.
But today we kneel only to truth, follow only beauty, and obey only love." ~ Khalil Gibran 1883-1931
The black and white checkered floor which runs through the majors is now complete and three-dimensional. In theory we know all we need to know...but probably not all we should know.
I'm off in a few minutes to care for a client, she is having surgery at 6:AM. Her health is so complicated I argued against this procedure, I just don't think she has the stamina to fully recover. Everyone concerned knows what they need to know though so I'll consider this card a good omen that all will be well and all will be well, again.
"The world is a playground, and life is pushing my swing." ~ Natalie Kocsis
In Poole's tarot vision the Fool really is carried or working his/her way through the major Arcana. And to emphasize that motion, her Fool is also the Wizard (see the second figure behind the Fool?) and the card is numbered both zero and twenty two.
I'm reminded by this card we can be both Fool and Wizard, I was there this morning. I forgot one of the important caveats of abandoned puppy mill dog training which is never forget. So I got puppy mill behavior rather than the young gentlemen behavior they and I have worked so hard for. Serves me right, a real Wizard would never forget. And the only magic I have is natural not otherworldly.
This week's deck is the Merryday Tarot, sometimes called Merry Day. Louisa Poole is the artist and author of the two part companion book, one part on personal numerology, the second half covers each card of the deck and why she renamed or revisioned some of the cards. Long out of print, but the deck is still reasonably priced on the secondary market, the book is another story.
In its upright mode this card does have a good message about our Knight status. It takes persistence to do anything worth doing. And time. And effort. And this is a good thing. If everything were easy everyone would do it wouldn't they?
I take issue with the wording "No matter how hard or how long". Because there lies perfectionism and obsession when clear thinking no long applies. The art of living relies on recognizing when a task is finished. And then letting go. Total difference from quitting midstream.
"This is the highest wisdom that I own; freedom and life are earned by those alone who conquer them each day anew." ~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe 1749-1832
I've enjoyed working with the Guardians this week, my only quibble is the suit names. Rather than including two worlds, I would have been happier seeing all the suits as Peoples, or all the suits as Earth elementals (gnomes; salamanders; undines; and sylphs) or all suits of Otherworld, whatever that constitutes besides angels and goddesses.
I read the local paper yesterday, the first time in many months. I seldom do this simply because I can't comprehend the brutality humans are capable of. We throw the word depression around so casually that to say it depresses me minimizes the impact.
I'm reminded by this card, I guess if there weren't people with compassion and empathy the world would be a much poorer place...but those are reactive words. How can someone like me ever be proactive, stop these stories before they ever become one? There are enormous government programs in place and they don't stop abuse and destruction. So. All compassion does for me today is make me want to go back to bed.
But you can see why I don't use reversals, the card drawn upright will be plus/negative/minus as needed.
"I had such scant offerings to give to the world, that the one thing that
justified my existence at all was my agony." ~ Elizabeth Wurtzel 1967-
Giving this card it's due, this is the way I feel most of the time. I have obligations that keep me tied and close, same as most, plus I do love being at home. But some days I just want to kick off the traces, get in the Pacifica, turn up the volume, and drive, anywhere, until I feel like stopping.
I'm reminded by this card my feelings and actions are both normal. Today is already spoken for by others, as was the day before and the day before, going back into time, but perhaps tomorrow will be my day for adventures. The potential is certainly something to contemplate with pleasure.
"What we call personality or character is a highly complex product of a long integrative process, a process which may go wrong and may be largely undone at any stage." ~ William McDougall 1871-1938
Daily Draw: Guardians of Wisdom Tarot ~ 10 of Coins
I wonder if the designers of this deck have ever spent time on an American Indian Reservation that wasn't in a bright shiny casino. I grew up with children from the Queets, Quinault, Chehalis, Quileute, and Hoh Indian tribes, and have been on reservations many times.
I'm reminded by this card and it's fortune cookie fortune, not reversed mind you, Native Americans struck me as an odd choice to use for Diamonds/Coins. While closer to the earth in heart and spirit than any hedge witch wannabe, there are few reservation indians that have or seem to want or value much in the way of material riches. On the other hand, if this is a honest prediction I'll take all the money I can lay my hands on...just so I can afford to spend more time in earth based pursuits and riches.
"Gordy gave me this book by a Russian dude named Tolstoy, who wrote: "Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way."
Well, I hate to argue with a Russian genius, but Tolstoy didn't know Indians. And he didn't know that all Indian families are unhappy for the same exact reason: the fricking booze.
Yep, so let me pour a drink for Tolstoy and let him think hard about the true definition of unhappy families. (27.11-27.12)" ~ Sherman Alexie, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
I come from the no-name generation, too late to be a boomer, too soon to be striped with something else. The children born in the 50's faced some of the most radical child/teen changes or allowances of any generation, until 40 years later and the internet age of anything goes.
As it relates to the upright 2 of Coins we learned our lesson well...spend what you get, and with the age of credit for anyone, spend what you don't have yet, and perhaps never will have. We hit the ground running, quick learners and adapters. We've saved less than any generation before us and as reward will spend our golden years running too. Growth, as in slowly gaining interest was too silly to be bothered with. So we didn't. Be kind to the Wal-Mart door greeters...shortly it may be thee and me.
To change one's life: 1. Start immediately. 2. Do it flamboyantly. 3. No exceptions. ~ William James 1842-1910
Drawn reversed, this is the Goddess suit, perplexed. That word suits the emotion, it seems unable to make up its mind and life is often like that, in the modern world we are faced with far more options than we need.
I'm reminded by this reversed card allowing our emotions to always rule our choices can make for a unstable life. Want rather than need, lust rather than love, grief rather than recovery, temper rather than tempering...
"We might wish we lived in a more tranquil world, but we don't.
And if our times are difficult and perplexing, so are they challenging
and filled with opportunity." ~ Robert Francis Kennedy 1925-1968
Guardians of Wisdom, subtitled Universal Power Cards is in the batters box this week. Art by Emy Ledbetter, words by Todd Hershey, no companion book with this set but it comes with seven extra cards, four with the story behind the deck and three with spreads suggested for use with the deck. Printed by Carta Mundi, 2000.
In auto parlance this deck would be called a cross-over I suppose, neither fowl nor beast. Underlying all is a tarot base so I will identify the suits as thus. The majors are titled Universal Guardians and marked with Roman Numerals. The four suits are marked by number and standard playing card deck suit.
Spades/Swords represented by Ancient Asians
Hearts/Cups represented by Goddesses
Clubs/Wands represented by Angels
Diamonds/Coins represented by Native Americans
The entire deck is designed for drawing both uprights and reversals.
Daily Draw: Celtic Book of the Dead ~ Island of the Eagle
Having suffered many injuries and insults to his body and mind, Maelduin and his companions are coming to the end of their journey. On this island they find berries which when crushed in the water renew mind, body, and spirit.
I'm reminded by this card if travel is a living, home is a vacation where we can knit up our raveled brow.
"Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?" isn't necessarily the be all end all. In the Greenwood deck the Hermit follows Death for good reason, allowing unhurried time to rest and heal and review.
"To be worn out is to be renewed." ~ Lao Tzo 4th, 5th, or 6th century BC
Daily Draw: Celtic Book of the Dead ~ Island of Singing Birds
How many times have you heard or said "I wish I could talk to a lost loved one, one more time"? Birdsong denotes closeness to the Otherworld and is a map to the possibility of doing that thing we most wish.
I'm reminded by this Island we do in fact have at our brain tips, the ability to talk to the dead. We can honor their memory by remembering conversations already held. Think of the time, the place, the circumstances, then the words. They are still on this side of the bridge to the Otherworld, held in heart and mind.
"Are you or did you really listen? Or just wait for your turn to talk?"
Daily Draw: Celtic Book of the Dead ~ Silver Branch
In short-speak this tool is the equivalent of a string tied to a finger.
This card is a reminder the answers and tools we need don't always need to be sought outside, by now we actually hold most of the knowledge we need within. My blog could be my own silver branch, a poke in the psyche each morning to be a stronger better person than I was the day before.
"The gateway to the mind turns the deserts of the brain to fruitful plains of
inner knowledge." ~ Paraphrasing Physforum suspended member.
Tarot opened previously closed doors to my own heart with it's merciless quest for the truth, nothing but the truth. They flay the soul and make me say thank you afterward. Each hour spent with my cards is a new lesson to be learned. Viva la Journey.