Thursday, April 30, 2015

Dragon Enhanced

Daily Draw: Chinese Tarot ~ 8 of Swords

Most 8 of Swords cards show a figure who may be defenseless but not imprisoned except by her own inertia. In this card we see four men with two swords each, who have moved on and are on the defense and ready at a  moments notice to go into offence.

I'm reminded by this card all three stances are tiring and difficult to keep up. Whoever and whatever we are against today, in a week it will be someone or something different if we are always on the prod. A more moderate lifestyle is more healthy mentally and emotionally. Breathe Relax Breathe. What looks like a dragon is probably it's shadow enhanced by imagination.

"Defend me, from myself." ~ Spanish proverb

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Take The Wider View

Daily Draw: Chinese Tarot ~ 5 of Swords

We watched the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings recently, such massive swords, such ringing of steel, so much swordplay, seemingly always for hours and hours. Back when men were men and women were exceptional and orcs were enormous.

I'm reminded by this card movies portray a physical fiction that can't be achieved in real life. Rotator cuffs and ankles and empty bellies rather preclude that kind of fighting. How many swords could we keep in the air for how long? Sometimes mentally we have to do it for years and because time is just one second after another we don't realize how spent we are until we drop them and find ourselves depleted.

"It needs but one foe to breed a war, and those who have not swords can still die upon them. ~  J.R.R. Tolkien 1892-1973

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Detaching and Experiencing

Daily Draw: Chinese Tarot ~ Hierophant/Heavenly Master.

This card represents Chang Tao-ling, healer, magician, and the first great teacher of Taoism. Out of curiosity I looked up the difference between Tao and Zen. At it's simplest, apparently removing Buddhism from Zen, you basically have Tao. Buddhism is detaching and Zen and Tao are experiencing.

The hexagrams on his great robe incorporate elements of nature with corresponding human nature. Thunder is movement and power; hills and mountains are repose and interruption.  I'm reminded by this card, and with respect for the ideology of both paths, we can, and do, make any theology represent what we want it to. Funny that...

"Theology is searching in a dark cellar at midnight for a black cat that isn't there." ~ Robert A. Heinlein  1907-1988

Monday, April 27, 2015


Daily Draw: Chinese Tarot ~ Hanged Man/Hanging Ghost

At one time, and perhaps still, injustice without recourse was a legitimate reason for suicide in China. Whether approved by society or not, it is still a common reason for the act.

I'm reminded by this card, life will lessen most hurt and harm because time will invariably give us more immediate problems to deal with, but in the moment, suicide can seem such a clean out. I wonder if any of us can say we've never been even remotely or inadvertently part of the cause and effect? I said something to a grammar school classmate once that still scorches my heart and mind when I remember. It was a clever comeback. Once I thought of it, I waited and waited until an opportunity arose where I could use it. Unforgivable. Vicki, I apologize, and am so sorry.

Given or received; we have enough within us,
The meanest vassal and the loftiest monarch,
not to add to each other's natural burden
of mortal misery." ~ Lord Byron 1788-1824  Sardanapalus

Sunday, April 26, 2015


Daily Draw: Chinese Tarot ~ 2 of Swords

Am I on guard against others or am I fighting myself?
Am I protecting knowledge or afraid of new ideas?

All of the above, sometimes. Her pose reminds me of the Hanged Man, who refuses the option to acquiesce gracefully. The plan today is listen think listen think. We've had a decent offer on our farm up north, with another offer pending. We want it sold, but it is a terrible wrench, giving up my sanctuary and koi and I'm a bit on the prod.

"Something I like to do a lot is just sit by water and just stare into it. I don't swim, don't fish, don't hunt, don't scuba, don't spear, don't boat, I excel at staring into space. I'm really good at that." ~ Iggy Pop 1947-

Chinese Tarot, art by Jui Guoliang, published by US Games Systems 1989. Recently republished.

Saturday, April 25, 2015


Daily Draw: Philosopher's Stone ~ Sharing

For good or bad, the computer made sharing easier, copy/paste/print or floppy disk, and the
internet even more so. We can go to Project Gutenberg and read or download ancient books we'd never had a hope of seeing. Most big museums have online galleries, the Smithsonian has a website we can spend weeks using and not exhaust.

I'm reminded by this card the internet and the microwave share something in common. They both can do so much more but by habit or design we do so little with either. Why do we use the web to make the equivalent of popcorn for the brain?

"In the long history of humankind and animalkind  those who learned to collaborate and improvise most effectively have prevailed." ~ Charles Darwin 1809-1882

Speaking of sharing, will the reader from the Ukraine please contact me re: Margarete Peterson, I've found what you are looking for

Friday, April 24, 2015


Daily Draw: Philosopher's Stone ~ Self

Me, myself, and I have been reading about Self from the philosopher's standpoint.

The tidiest explanation is the Kanizsa triangle; the Self sees or divines the triangle that isn't there.

"The greatest hazard of all, losing one's self, can occur very quietly in the world, as if it were nothing at all. No other loss can occur so quietly; any other loss, an arm, a leg, five dollars, a wife, is sure to be noticed." ~ Søren Kierkegaard 1813-1855 The Sickness Unto Death

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Broken Power

Daily Draw: Philosopher's Stone Oracle ~ Power

Power wielded without brain power
Power administered without compassion
Power held too long
Power plus advisors with their own agenda

We see all of the above in the outer world, but in our own small worlds we also hold critical power. I'm reminded by this card of all  the broken people who had the misfortune to be born into the wrong family, fell in love with the wrong person, picked friends badly...we all have the capacity to harm those closest to us. Far more damage can and does happen under our own roof than ever happens in the outside world.

"Most powerful is he who has himself in his own power." ~ Seneca 4 BC- 65 AD

Wednesday, April 22, 2015


Daily Draw: Philosopher's Stone Oracle ~ Tension

Funny how tension can instantly run through a room, be defused, and be gone.

I'm reminded by this card I think I've outgrown piling more firewood on the flames.

"it’s kind of ironic that flame wars erupt about arguments that can’t be won." ~ Toptenz

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Deficient Thinking

Daily Draw: Philosopher's Stone Oracle ~ Thinking

Look at all those thinks floating, around, in, out. I'm listening to The Dog Who Knew Too Much, a Chet and Bernie mystery, written from the dog's viewpoint. Not so many thinks there. And I've been sweating my neurological exam for dementia, far too many thinks in that direction.

I'm reminded by this card, like so many things in life, better out than in. By facing up to the fear, and actually seeking help, three doctors agree it isn't dementia, or age related, but a chronic critically low B-12 level, going clear back to 2007. Twinned to all the big stressors going back to 2008. How easy was that? Guess I won't be cashing in my Roth and buying a bucket load of wrist gleamers...Just sharing in case anyone has worrying missing thinks.

"He that reads and grows no wiser seldom suspects his own deficiency, but complains of hard words and obscure sentences, and asks why books are written which cannot be understood." ~  Samuel Johnson 1709-1784

Monday, April 20, 2015


Daily Draw: Philosopher's Stone Oracle ~ Skill

Handles multiple projects at one time
Accepts responsibility for self and others
Ok with being both better and worse than others
Ok with what turned out to be my one true calling

"Knowledge is gained by learning; trust by doubt; skill by practice; and love by love." ~ Thomas S. Szasz 1920-1012

Sunday, April 19, 2015


Daily Draw: Philosopher's Stone Oracle ~ Effort

To finish projects
To pull the heaviest lawnmower back up hill
To remember words and dates
To be a good steward of home and finances
To be thoughtful
To be of service
To remember mother in better days

To not be rude, churlish, mean tempered, short sighted
To forget velocity and mind the speed limit

"Be alert in guarding against relapse." ~ Horace 65 BC-8 BC

Philosopher's Stone deck, art by De Es Schwertberge from his Stoneman series, 40 cards US Games Systems edition 1991

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Success Via Randomness

Daily Draw: Shining Tribe Tarot ~ Magician

The passage from Fool to Magician reminds me of the Roomba vacuum, a robotic round disk. Turned on when you leave for work, it will blunder around the room all day. Theory being even without direction it will eventually get the whole room by accident rather than design. I've never seen one but the different brands get high reviews.

That shot my random path theory out of the water, maybe the Fool is no dummy after all. And that path of success via randomness may be what gives the Magician much of his strength. Standing before his dying city, his greatest tool is knowing by not giving up there is always some measure of success to be achieved.

"The artist is nothing without the gift, but the gift is nothing without work." ~ Emile Zola 1840-1902

Friday, April 17, 2015

Armored Or Open?

Daily Draw: Shining Tribe Tarot ~ Queen of Swords/Gift of Birds

This Queen has chosen her path, protect and defend, aggression and blockage. The other option for this Queen is dropping the shield to catch the flute but that isn't enough. She must lay down the pennant of conquest and take off the helmet in order to play the instrument.  

Some days we have to pick our battles. I'd rather err on the side of clear thoughts and creativity rather than live with the assumption everyone is out to get me. Vigilance in that direction is wasteful of what little time and energy we have.

"When in doubt, trill." ~ John Phillip Sousa 1854-1932

Thursday, April 16, 2015


Daily Draw: Shining Tribe Tarot ~ Devil

If I ran the world I might suggest card number 6 be Love rather than Lovers, and card number 13 be Hate. It would open up both cards to wider interpretation.

I'm reminded by this card to me Devil is restrictive. You have to believe in such a thing to begin with, then be saddled with milleniums of mind numbing religious connotations. which lead to guilt, sometimes to the point of suicide, or worse, the 'he made me do it, didn't have nothing to do with me and anyway if I say I'm sorry I accept no consequences, ain't life grand'. But hate, now there is a subject to get our mind around. Self hate, family hate, religious hate, political hate, cultural hate, race hate, species hate, life hate...all having nothing to do with some creature called Devil.  The seed is always in us, and so is 100% responsibility.

My spell check isn't working today..."It is a poor mind that can think of only one way to spell a word." ~ Andrew Jackson 1767-1845

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Daily Dose Of Magic

Daily Draw: Shining Tribe Tarot ~ Knight of Coins/Knower of Stones

In this deck the Knights are the understanders of the suit. Is that enough? One side of my brain understands why boats float and the electric current that runs a freezer; but the other side of my brain, the stronger side still doesn't understand and sees the results as nothing short of magical.

This card reminds me of the minus side of being a scientist.
I'd love to be smart but, not to see the modern magic that surrounds us, how sad.
But to have the brain that understands, wouldn't that be totally amazing.
But to lose the sense of common magic, that would be almost criminal.
But to understand...
luckily it isn't a choice we have to make, our DNA and environment does it for us or we'd be spending our days looking behind the television for the actors.

"Reason is intelligence taking exercise. Imagination is intelligence with an erection." ~ Victor Hugo 1802-1885

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Bug Eyed

Daily Draw: Shining Tribe Tarot ~ 6 of Wands/Trees

Cheerful trees if somewhat abashed...have they have been yarn bombed? Actually their decoration comes from a cache of painted bones 5000 years old. A card of confidence, yet I see her marching blindly over new knowledge and taking no notice of the knowledge that is drifting away.

I'm reminded by this card we often live such closed lives we don't know what is going on next door, let alone the next street or town. This can be a good thing if there is healing to be done but to deliberately narrow our world is a form of self strangulation of the worst degree. I need to remember to look everywhere, and no tricks, the eyes need to be open when looking.

"Playing small doesn't serve the world. There's nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people don't see or know you."
 Marianne Williamson 1952-

Monday, April 13, 2015

Fresh Vessel

Daily Draw: Shining Tribe Tarot ~ 9 of Cups/Rivers

Born as a cup of light, fairly soon we've kicked a hole in the container, eventually our cup is in shards. How to reverse the process? How do we, our toughest critic, create recovery and light out of the mad monkey mess in our minds and heart?

I'm reminded by this card and all the broken threads that run though my life that my cup is unmendable. I'm no longer willing to go the extra mile, to forgive by forgetting, to grovel and swallow my feelings and angers, paying the price with my precious light and peace. My solution, because life is short, is a new cup. Hey. Imagine the concept...start fresh, consciously refilling, with a loveliness of light and being.

"Your job today is to pass gas. You do that and we can start feeding you liquids. No fart, no food." ~ Khaled Hosseini 1965-  The Kite Runner

Sunday, April 12, 2015

9 Of Swording

Daily Draw: Shining Tribe Tarot ~ 9 of Swords/Birds

The symbols in this deck are taken from past civilizations; the bottom shape is a stylized burial urn from the Greek island Lemnos circa 3000 BC. Pollack tweaked the tips to show it morphing into an ax for blood sacrifice.

The ancient Assyrian city of Nimrud is now flat sand, one of many seek and destroy missions of the current crop of  jihadists. I'm reminded by this burial mound and dead trees much of what we hold dear is fragile and everyone has a garden of flat sand in their life. Something or someone we've harmed, something or someone we've irretrievably lost. History's pattern, and the one thing that  never changes, 9 of swording like there is no tomorrow.

"Anger is an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured." ~ Seneca 4 BC-65 AD

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Running The World Gamut

Daily Draw: Shining Tribe Tarot ~ Strength

Strength cards run the gamut from gently coping with passions and prisons, to wrestling with and/or beating to death our demons, to flinging all caution aside and wildly riding the beast into the ground or the sunset.

I'm reminded by this card I once had a teacher whose chosen method of chastisement was having the miscreant running the gamut of two rows of other students hitting them as he/she zipped by. I wouldn't be a school child today for anything. Instead of fearing/embracing a small self-contained world they now have access to everything. Where can children draw the Strength from to cope with the full-tilt world?

"The world is not a playground; it is a schoolroom. Life is not a holiday, but an education." ~ Henry Drummond 1851-1897

Friday, April 10, 2015


Daily Draw: Shining Tribe ~ Emperor

The companion book indicates how various decks present the Emperor, and how readers and querents perceive them, often two divergent areas of thought. Pollack's is an Emperor/Shaman figure, one who rules the outer world but also has the gift of knowing the spirit/inner world.

I'm reminded by this card I often place myself in my daily card in the same manner as house or car shopping. You have to make that mental jump or the process won't move to completion. Emperors are charged to execute and complete as their driving force, yet I can never place myself in the Emperor card.

Without leaders and leadership chaos would reign, but must it always be at the cost of individual thought? I expect that singular trait in Emperors is what keeps me from embracing or even admiring the breed.

"There’s a point when you have to choose whether to be like everybody else the rest of your life, or to make a virtue of your peculiarities." ~ Ursula K. Le Guin 1929-  The Dispossessed

Thursday, April 9, 2015


Daily Draw: Shining Tribe Tarot ~ 5 of Rivers/Cups

Like a mini-wheel, the crane signifies the flow of life, never consistently rough or smooth.

I'm reminded by this card I've been using the incredible flux of my life this decade as a reason or excuse for my poor memory. Today I start the process to find out if it is instead, dementia. With flow and flux we always need to redefine beginning don't we?

"It doesn't matter where you are coming from. All that matters is where you are going." ~ Brian Tracy 1944-

Wednesday, April 8, 2015


Daily Draw: Shining Tribe Tarot ~ Ace of Birds/Swords

Intellectual and emotional honesty. Courage to recognize confused thinking and its attendant anxiety.

"Everyone has a photographic Memory, some just don't have film." ~ Steven Wright 1955-

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Plate Of Life

Daily Draw: Shining Tribe Tarot ~ Place of Trees/Page of Wands

Building a sanctuary of and in the heart. Do we actively seek it? Do we fall across it accidentally? Do we nurture or abuse it?

I saw a program yesterday (Inspector Morse, Fat Chance) whose various threads were woven around the vicious circles of interests becoming passions becoming addictions, becoming weapons of punishment.  What strange trigger in our brain says keep going when the plate of life says enough?

"It is with our passions as it is with fire and water; they are good servants, but bad masters."  Aesop 620 BC - 560 BC

Monday, April 6, 2015

It's Complicated

Daily Draw: Shining Tribe Tarot ~ Knower of Rivers/Knight of Cups

Someone with an imagination or understanding of basic symbology could pick up this deck and tell fortunes. To me, tarot is so far from that use as to be like night and day, the one thing that links is yes it is a deck of cards. That said, Rachel Pollack has taken the general card definitions far beyond the basic, and what are customarily the stiff sixteen courts become four little mini-myths (procession noted bottom of yesterdays post).

All that said to say, at this stage of the mini-myth the Knower has gained/earned the understanding of the suit of Rivers and exited or outgrown the cave of Learning.  Knowledge now proceeds to practical application as we see in this image. How  many times have I reinvented the wheel or got knocked back to the remedial class in the school of hard knocks? A little knowledge is a dangerous thing, but it is also bait, urging us on, to look beyond our own blinders and finally walk the path of Knowing.

"I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do." ~ Leonardo da Vinci 1452-1519

Sunday, April 5, 2015


Daily Draw: Shining Tribe Tarot ~ High Priestess

High Priestess doesn't do anything, she watches, listens, thinks and understands.

I'm reminded by this card this is the biggest reason for conflict in life, we don't understand so we put our defenses on high alert which in turn blocks understanding. In a blessed life where I have everything I need, I'm still dangerously painfully short of understanding.

"He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you." ~ Friedrich Nietzsche 1844-1900

Saturday, April 4, 2015


Daily Draw: Astrological Oracle ~ Uranus

Genius, originality, eccentricity. Doesn't recognize limits, in to the end.

Eleanor Burns
Sharon Schamber
Caryl Bryer Fallert
Diane Gaudynski
Janet Stone

"Genius is the recovery of childhood at will." ~ Arthur Rimbaud 1854-1891

Friday, April 3, 2015

Take Aim

Daily Draw: Astrological Oracle ~ Sagittarius

As long as they don't lose their focus and go into a drift, Sagittarians are the best of us for keeping their goal in sight, and seeking out new tools and knowledge to get there.

I looked up Sagittarius sky setting and wonder how many heads it took to connect these stars into a centaur? And learned there are two myths connected to the story, both sides adamant they are correct. No consensus on whether they mate as humans or mammals. Not that is anyone's business unless you own a business in Indiana.

"Believe those who are seeking the truth; doubt those who find it." ~ André Gide 1869-1951

Thursday, April 2, 2015

I'll Do It Tomorrow

Daily Draw: Astrological Oracle ~ Pluto

Pluto rules our dark side, our inner side. Release  and death, rebirth and regeneration.

Outside literal death, it is easy to just ignore the things we need to deal with, minutes lead to hours lead to a life that could have been better had we stopped farting around and taken a moment to cut our losses, evaluate our associations, crawled out from the ocean of clutter drowning us. To be aware rather than sleepwalk though life, to do it now, not the later than never comes.

"The only good thing about the easy path is that it is easy."

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Avoiding Conflict

Daily Draw: Astrological Oracle ~ Libra

Balance, fairness, avoids conflict at all costs.

I used to say "I don't want any trouble" when it came to family.
Avoiding conflict didn't help, we are all estranged now anyway so what was the point? If I'd said my say all those years there would have at least been honesty...Now I'm long past caring other than pondering the oddness once in a while.

"No one is willing to acknowledge a fault in himself when a more agreeable motive can be found for the estrangement of his acquaintances." ~ Mark Twain 1835-1910