My First Baseball Tarot Spread

I haven’t done a personal reading in quite a little while, other than daily draws. I was excited about my new Baseball Tarot deck and feeling a little funky, so I sat down and made up a spread using my neat Deck of 1000 Spreads (it has lots of cards that can represent different positions, so it’s easy to go through and build a spread when I’m feeling stumped). The Baseball Tarot did not disappoint. This spread really hit home in a lot of ways, and I’ve been thinking it over for days!

19 March 2016
Baseball Tarot

Position One: The Situation

The Pitcher (The Moon)

Here the moon speaks to me of trauma, which is tricky and not straight-forward. Trauma lives deeper than the conscious mind — in the unconscious and in the bones. The situation is steeped in trauma.

Position Two: Attitudes & Thoughts

Four of CupsFour of Mitts: Foul (Four of Cups)

While I usually connect more strongly with a more positive-leaning interpretation of this card, today it fits well with withdrawn and isolated. I wonder if now is when “enough is enough.” I’ve begged for the outstretched cup (of the Waite-Smith depiction) for so long it’s become degrading. And it’s only now being offered once I’m past the point of feeling like I have any dignity left.

I don’t feel able to reach out and take the cup because I’m trying to cling to any sense of dignity or self-worth I may have left in this situation. I am a human being worthy of some minimal degree of respect and consideration, and I’ve been fooling myself into thinking for some time now that I’m being patient and understanding when really I’ve just pathetically been begging for the kind of treatment I’m clearly not worth to another person. It makes me feel a sort of self-loathing and patheticness to have allowed this to happen.

Position Three: Positive Influences

Three of Mitts: Triple Play (Three of Cups)

There is now a willingness on the part of the other person to cooperate and actually take an active role in this relationship. As I alluded to above, however, I fear it’s too little too late as I try to nurture the remaining shreds of self-respect I have left.

Position Four: Blocking or Covering

The Team (The Lovers)

What is blocking this positive influence is that I’ve been made to feel such an outsider from “the team” for so long while jumping and pleading to be allowed to play that I don’t know if I can join with any dignity now that it may be possible. Even if I “join,” I will always know what it took to be allowed inside — and that is nearly unbearably painful.

Position Five: Heart of the Situation

The Manager (The Hierophant)

The principle of it. I understand that the Hierophant can in some circumstances stand for rigid dogma, but I’ve done a lot of soul searching and self-questioning. At the heart of the situation is my absolutely core set of beliefs which I have reexamined many times and which remain true to me. Someone trespassed and hurt me at this deepest level of beliefs. Is this something I can move on from? Is the relationship salvageable in any meaningful way, or is carrying on a superficial relationship as good as it can be now?

Position Six: Relationship

Five of Mitts: Error (Five of Cups)

Error after error after error. I feel like I’ve been 110% invested in improving “the play,” but the other person has just not taken it seriously at all until I finally threw my hands up and left the field crying. While on the field I said over and over why this was important, but it didn’t matter. Not until I said I just can’t do it at all anymore.

The quote that starts this entry in the book for this deck says, “I cannot get rid of the hurt from losing. … But after the last out of every loss, I must accept that there’ll be a tomorrow. In fact, it’s more than that there’ll be a tomorrow. It’s that I want there to be a tomorrow. – Sparky Anderson” I want there to be a “tomorrow” for this relationship, but I don’t know whether or not I’ve suffered a career ending injury during the final, massive error.

I’ve been willing to learn from mistakes and grow and accept imperfection. But I was the only one really, really trying for a long time. And now I don’t know if I want to try anymore.

Position Seven: Advice

Three of Bases: Safe (Three of Pentacles)

In this position, I think this card offers two separate pieces of advice:

  1. Work together as I am able at attempting to reconstruct the relationship. If I 100% withdraw, there’s no chance of the relationship healing.
  2. As an individual, throw myself into my own crafts. Tarot, crochet, writing, cooking, cleaning. Continue to build ways to feel good about myself and to do work I’m proud of.

Position Eight: Outcome

Two of Bases: Pickoff (Two of Pentacles)

The Two of Pentacles is not one of my favorite cards because I feel like it’s such an unwelcome reality check. Every time I see it I feel like it says, “Listen, life has ups and downs. It ain’t always easy. What else do you expect?” Egh, thanks for the reminder that life sucks sometimes.

However, I do really enjoy the Baseball Tarot’s description of the card. So perhaps a possible outcome is the ability for the relationship to feel less like work and more like play, though coordination is needed either way. And whether that’s to be a real, substantive relationship or a superficial, unclose relationship remains to be seen.

Overall

While I don’t exactly feel better after this reading, I feel like many things were articulated I’ve had trouble with. This reading really affirmed what I’m feeling while also casting things in a light that helps me to make better sense of my feelings. I’m still unsure, afraid, sad, hurt, angry, and confused. But it’s been a really good examination of all of these messy emotions that have been rolling around inside of me, tangled up and yucky.

Evening Read: 22 Jan 2016

Reading 2016, Jan 22
Dreaming Way Tarot

Position One: What did I learn or excel at today?

Four of Cups

Today it was really difficult to be satisfied with myself as I am. I was feeling adventurous yesterday and dyed my hair for the first time ever! It was supposed to be a dark color with a purple-y shine to it, but it turned out more red than purple. And I have a bumpy red face which seems to be mid-flair-up right now. (Doc thinks it might be rosacea?) Self conscious about my hair, self conscious about my face. I did do some reflecting today on how tough it can be at times to live self-love and self-confidence. Instead of being happy with the three cups in front of me, I keep looking for a fourth cup that will make me happier. It’s an uncomfortable way to be! Not quite a lesson, not something I excelled at, but something that became quite apparent today. So if I can recognize it, I can work to counter the negative self-talk.

Position Two: How can I strive to be my best tomorrow?

The Sun

Well … be confident! Love myself, be bold. Tomorrow I’ll be attending my first “psychic fair” where I plan to get my first in-person tarot reading. I’m pretty excited! Let go and enjoy the day. Exude goodness, accept goodness.

Reading: Through The Shadows

I received Barbara Moore’s Tarot Spreads: Layouts & Techniques to Empower Your Readings for Christmas. Today I decided to try her “Through the Shadows Spread” to further explore my current heartache.

Reading 2016, Jan 3
Prisma Visions Tarot

Position One: My truth

The Star

I do understand that my current heartache is temporary. I was thinking just earlier today that time is the only thing that will really sooth the sharp pain I feel right now, but that at the moment I have to experience this. There’s no getting around it. So I do believe that better things will come, but it’s like I’m outside without my glasses on. All of the stars are blurred and practically invisible. I can’t imagine what this better future would be. I’m mired in pain at the moment with no clear Star perspective other than the not quite helpful adage of “this too shall pass.”

Position Two: My deepest inner fear

Four of Chalices

While usually I lean more toward the more upbeat interpretation of this card, that is not so in this position. I’m afraid I’m doomed to sit under this tree having my cups kicked over by inconsiderate passers by. I’m trying to be strong and content, but every time I fill up a few cups and start to feel stable (the number four), something happens. Perhaps I’m minding my own business and someone kicks my cups down. Or perhaps I invite someone under my tree to proudly show them my cups and they are indifferent or dismissive. It’s a lonely place to be, and sometimes I feel like I am doomed to relive this over and over. This deck’s depiction of the Four of Chalices reflects this feeling very strongly for me.

Position Three: Familiar, external fear, distraction, or illusion

Ace of Swords

I often fear that I’m being unreasonable or overly harsh in wielding my sword-element powers. In this situation, this has crossed my mind from time to time, but honestly I believe I have been wronged and that I am not being unreasonable to feel this way.

Position Four: Unknown, external fear, distraction, or illusion

Nine of Chalices

Satisfaction and happiness with life are things that I have sneaked awfully close to but which remain unknown to me as constants. Or constant enough for me to trust in them as something I deserve or will have again. It feels like an illusion that is too good to be true, and it is something I fear I won’t be able to have.

For all three fear positions, it seems appropriate that they’re chalices and a sword. My thoughts and emotions can get so twisted up and confused that I feel horribly lost and frightened.

Positions Five & Six: Lighting my path

Two of Pentacles, Seven of Wands

Life has its ups and downs, and I can create my own steady rhythm including when to let some balls drop. If I keep this in mind I may feel more in control and less lost. I may be in a very challenging time right now, but I must trust myself to get through. I must not doubt my strength or my value. I find the depiction of the Seven of Wands in this deck particularly beautiful.

Position Seven: Nature of my path

Strength

Ah, my friend Strength. As difficult as this path is, the nature of this path is self-confidence and self-trust. Believing I am strong and valuable and not wavering on these points. Without holding to these beliefs, I will surely collapse on this path. It would be too unbearable to find some healthy way out of this situation and I’d be gobbled up by depression and sorrow and make a mess of my life over someone who clearly doesn’t value me as much.

And Strength isn’t always inherently from oneself alone. I can draw strength and encouragement from my sweetheart as I trudge down this painful trail.

Two Card Pull

Tonight I’m feeling a little grumpy and a little jealous (which is a bit uncomfortable to admit). It’s actually been a good day, but a thing happened and I have a gross feeling in the pit of my stomach.

I thought I’d pull a card just to see what tarot might remind me or tell me.

Reading 2015, Nov 21
Animal Wisdom Tarot

Go figure, I’m too structured and get upset when things don’t go the way I planned them to. I am acutely aware of that. Since tarot stated the obvious, I pulled one more card to perhaps get some more insight.

Reading 2015, Nov 21 (2)
Animal Wisdom Tarot

While dissatisfaction might be the obvious message, I am really finding myself leaning toward the alternative interpretation of satisfaction with what one has each time I pull this card. This little crab might be saying, “Listen, life is good. You can’t get everything you want or make everything go the way you want. But take a step back. You have a pretty awesome life. And people love you and you’re only jealous of their time because you’re afraid. Take an honest look at what you have and see that it is more than okay and more than pretty good. It’s great.” Okay little crab, you were way more helpful than the ram tonight.

Oh, and it just occurred to me that they’re both fours. Structure, structure, structure. Yeah. Don’t be so rigid. I’m working on it.

Reading: Justice

Reading 2015, Nov 20
Gypsy Palace Tarot, A Reading for Justice (for conflict situations) from Rachel Pollack’s The New Tarot Handbook

This reading is for a conflict situation, so I’ll just keep in mind what upset me last night as I do this reading.

Position One: What is outer justice?

Four of Cups

Huska’s description of this card fits this reading well. A balance in a relationship. This balance is made of respect and fairness and is needed to avoid dissatisfaction or resentment.

Position Two: What is the wisdom of pursuing it?

The Sun

Clarity. If things are not clear, miscommunication can easily happen, and that can upset the balance.

Position Three: What action is best?

The Moon

It may seem the opposite of the Sun above, but the Moon speaks to the mysteries of the unconscious. Both our own unconscious and the mind of whoever we are in a relationship with are mysterious places. Sometimes we have to dive in and explore these unknowns before we can reach clarity. The light of the moon may help us to see things we wouldn’t have noticed otherwise.

Position Four: What is inner justice?

The Hanged Man

A new perspective. The same old viewpoint can become torturous. Self-honesty and fairness can come through trying a new viewpoint. The Moon and the Hanged Man together in this reading might speak to the importance of this new perspective.

Position Five: What part do I play?

King of Pentacles

Pentacles represent the physical world, and the King of Pentacles can be read as a provider or a master craftsman. My role could include caring for (providing for) my body so my mind can do its necessary work.

I love Huszka’s depiction of this king. He’s not a rich businessman on a throne with all of his monetary wealth. He walks through the world and seems to have fruit falling from the basket/bag her carries. Fruit for everyone! Sustenance and health for all through this king. To provide this kind of care also takes love and dedication. I should feel those things for myself as I seek inner justice.

Position Six: How will justice come about?

The Chariot

The Chariot is a card that, like Justice, speaks to balance. But the Chariot is a more conscious and controlling balance. A less practiced and less natural sense of balance, but a balance nonetheless. Justice will come through practicing balance willfully. In the Major Arcana, we can’t get to Justice without first visiting the Chariot. Conscious effort and practice.

Position Seven: What is the link between inner and outer justice?

King of Wands

Fire of fire. This king is a creative leader, and while fire can suggest spontaneity, as a king he is responsible for his choices to more people than just himself. Passion and creativity can help to both facilitate communicate without giving up and to see things from a new perspective. And people in a relationship are responsible to each other. I can see creativity and responsibility being a link between inner and outer justice.

Overall Reflection

Four major cards and two kings! I’m not sure what that may mean, but that piece of the reading certainly stood out to me. With more practice I’ll be better able to think about what things like this may signify or communicate.

Reading: The Empress

Reading 2015, Nov 9
Animism Tarot, A Reading for the Empress from Rachel Pollack’s The New Tarot Handbook

Position One: What is my passion?

Six of Swords

My passion is my journey to a becoming a healthier, happier person. I have experienced pain, and I am ready to move forward.

In the Animism Tarot, the swords appear to be under the water, pointing toward the sunrise. So the swords are still present, but they are submerged and provide direction to something beautiful and warm. A sunrise also symbolizes a new beginning. Creator Joanna Cheung says, “The journey is almost over, and your destination is close.” Keywords include both fortitude and tranquility, strength and peace.

Swords are air, but both this depiction and the traditional RWS card are filled with water. The water (emotion) can successfully carry the mental anguish symbolized by the swords. In the traditional card, the ferryman uses a pole (wand) to push the ferry along. This represents the drive to create change and move on.

Position Two: How have I expressed it?

The Hierophant

I have expressed this by reevaluating my worldview and creating spiritual practices that feed my soul. As I quoted in my first encounter with the Hierophant, Paul Quinn says in Tarot for Life: “Our task is to keep the ones [the ideas] that expand out spirit and retire the rest. … the Hierophant represents not only what one has learned or must learn, but also what one must eventually unlearn to nurture the heightened consciousness beckoning in the World card” (62, emphasis in original).

I am learning tarot and meditation, both spiritual practices with communities and long histories, in the hopes that these will facilitate my journey. In the traditional RWS depiction, the Hierophant raises his hand with two finger pointed up and two pointed down, symbolizing “as above, so below.” I am expressing my passion for forward movement on my journey by acknowledging the spiritual elements of my life and incorporating them into my daily practices.

Position Three: How can I express it more fully?

Four of Cups

While many interpretations of the Four of Cups are about dissatisfaction or the need to reach out for an offered opportunity, I also like the interpretation that states that the man in the traditional RWS card is not dissatisfied, but is content with the three cups that already sit in front of him and is taking care of himself by not accepting a fourth cup, which might be too much for him to take on at this point in time.

I can live my passion of creating my true self by not taking on too much. I can appreciate what I have and recognize when to say, “No thank you.” This will allow me to dedicate more energy to the task at handn.

Position Four: What blocks me?

The High Priestess

I can be blocked when I stay in my own head for too long. Introspection has its place and is certainly valuable, but there comes a time for action. I am blocked when I become trapped inside myself and won’t or can’t turn my intuition and thoughts into action.

This card also appeared in my Reading for the High Priestess as well.

Position Five: What frees me?

Four of Wands

I am free when I am able to “let go” in the company of my family of choice. Their stable love creates an environment where I am occasionally able to forget myself and really be the person I am journeying toward.

This card appeared in The Magician’s Reading as well.

Position Six: What do I nurture?

Six of Wands

I nurture and celebrate success in others, and am beginning to do the same for myself. This card can also represent a balance of fire energy: enough to keep the fires burning bright, but not so much that they rage out of control. I am nurturing this sort of control or moderation in my journey.

Position Seven: What does nurturing ask of me?

Strength

Joanna, creator of the Animism Tarot, says, “Ferocity and gentleness, freedom and control, passion and compassion: there is balance here, one that requires a delicate touch, one without fear, but with understanding. With balance, comes peace.” Nurturing asks that I temper my passion with compassion and be confident in the knowledge that I do not have to be aggressive to achieve my goal.

The Strength card reminds me that “nurturing” with my dominant air qualities is not actually reflective of true strength. Knowledge and power are most effective when wedded to compassion and gentleness.

Position Eight: What does it give me?

Queen of Pentacles

Joanna says, “She is balanced in life, understanding the value of hard work as well as the importance of simple pleasures.” Through nurturing both myself and others, I will reap the benefits of this labor and be able to to partake in the simple pleasures that life offers by recognizing when to stop and smell the roses — which is in itself a form of self-nurturance.

The Queen of Pentacles showed up in The Fool’s Reading as well

Position Nine: How can I bring together my passion and my nurturance?

Two of Pentacles

The Two of Pentacles is a card that speaks to balance. This card acknowledges that balancing acts are not always the easiest: life comes with ups and downs. While the Four of Cups in this reading spoke to not taking on more than I can handle, this card may say, “But you must handle the balance between your passion and nurturing. Don’t neglect one in favor of the other, and work to tend both of them.” This card also implies that this juggling act doesn’t inherently have to be tedious or boring: I can make it joyful if I choose to approach it with a good attitude.

Halloween Reading

I wanted to do this yesterday, but we were awfully busy and I wasn’t able to. So I’m doing my Halloween reading one day late. I found this spread at The Daily Tarot Girl.

Reading 2015, Nov 1
Efflorescent Tarot

Position One: The Costume, who do I want to be this year

Four of Cups

The Four of Cups speaks to dissatisfaction and inner contemplation. I like to consult all of my little white books, and the Animal Wisdom Tarot book says, “Isn’t it time to come out of your shell?” Yes, that’s who I want to be this year. Someone who can let go of the supposed stability (really, rigidity) that keeps me dissatisfied, feeling trapped in myself. While it’s good to look inside myself for contemplation, I can’t stay there forever. It’s time to crawl out of my shell and be a freer, and happier, person. The guide for the Animism Tarot mentions a fear of change. I acknowledge that this fear exists, even as I so wish for change to happen.

Position Two: Possessed, what drives and inspires me

The Moon

The Moon speaks of the unconscious, how it affects us, and sometimes deception.

The moon is our primary natural source of light at night, and by the light of the moon things may or may not be as they seem. In the same way, my unconscious can bring my attention to important things by showing them to me in a new light. But it can also distort reality and make me feel fearful or drive me mad. I am driven by a desire to be a healthy and whole person. To understand my unconscious and how it and my traumatic past influence me so I can take conscious control and grow as a person. It feels like a tightrope pretty often: incredibly empowering and incredibly scary. Are those friendly dogs or hungry wolves under that moon? I’m not sure, but I keep going.

Position Three: Candy, how to get more sweetness out of life

Ace of Pentacles

The Ace of Pentacles represents opportunity. I can get more sweetness out of life by taking hold of more earth-centered opportunities. Create and accept physical comfort, the feeling of home, the wonders of nature, and the presence of my loved ones. I can get sweetness from putting down roots rather than retreating so often when things feel scary. Stay put, ride out the storm, and enjoy the physical joys that come from being in the world.

Position Four: Haunted, ghosts from the past

Ten of Cups

My past is the opposite of the Ten of Cups, which represents unconditional love, family, and bliss. I absolutely did not have a stable support system, and any time I thought things were going well, the rug would be violently pulled out from under me. I desperately want what the Ten of Cups represents. Who doesn’t, right? But any time I feel like I’m getting close to a life that might resemble the happiness contained in this card, I am absolutely gripped with fear that it will all be taken away and that the people I thought could be my loving family aren’t really invested in me and that I’m replaceable and unimportant. It is indeed the ultimate ghost from my past.

Position Five: RIP, how to banish those ghosts for good

The High Priestess

This is a tough one for me. The High Priestess represents intuition, the unconscious, and keeping secrets. Perhaps she is an indication to keep moving along my moonlit path, even though it’s a bit scary. She may also be saying to use my intuition more and my conscious intellect less. Feel my way along the path rather than think my way. Paul Quinn in Tarot for Life says, “that wisdom cannot merely be handed to us; we must feel our way toward it” (46, emphasis in original).

Position Six: Monsters & Goblins, fears and negative habits I’m ready to let go of

Ten of Swords

The Ten of Swords represents defeat. I’m tired of being depressed! I’m tried of fearing that my family of choice doesn’t love me as much as I love them. I’m tired of being afraid to show that love and appearing overly cool with them. Animals Wisdom Tarot’s Ten of Feathers is the vulture which can represent bringing life from death and flying high to shift the way we see the world. I’m ready to do that. I’m not assuming it will be easy, but I’m so ready.

The Reader’s Reading

After hearing about The Alternative Tarot Course through the fox and the otter (a really lovely blog about tarot), I decided to give it a try. One of the first things I’m tackling is the “Reader’s Reading.” I actually did this twice. Once I went through the deck and chose cards for each position, and then I shuffled and let tarot do the choosing. Both ways were really fun and engaging 🙂

Position One: My Most Important Characteristic

3 of Cups
3 of Cups

I said Three of Cups. This is one of the few cards I’ve been able to explore so far in my tarot journey and while it isn’t quite so obvious that it might represent a part of me, when I am able to let go I can feel so connected and joyful. And this is my favorite thing about myself.

3 of Wands

Tarot said Three of Wands. This could mean that am already taking steps to create the kind of change or outcome I want. I’m a go-getter. I don’t sit around and wait for things to happen to me or for me. If I’m unhappy with something I am already thinking of ways to make it better, and as soon as I have a plan of action I begin work.

They are both threes! Threes can represent creation, creativity, happiness, optimism, the death of something old to bring forth something new, and pleasure. The creative and happy parts of myself are what I believe my best characteristics are.

Position Two: What Strength I Already Possess As A Tarot Reader

4 of Cups

I said Four of Cups. I almost chose the Hermit because they are both about about introspection, but from what I have read so far, the Three of Cups says more about dissatisfaction. I’m not saying dissatisfaction is a strength at face value, but as I stated above, I don’t sit around when I don’t like something. So far I am understanding this card to mean a willingness to look inward for solutions to dissatisfaction. The strength I bring to tarot is a willingness to examine my own inner self in my quest for a more connected and meaningful life.

King of Pentacles

Tarot said King of Pentacles. This one was tough for me, but the keyword that finally jumped out at me was “commitment.” The King of Pentacles did not achieve his worldly success without commitment. Similarly, I will not achieve my emotional, mental, and spiritual successes without commitment. And committed I am! The King of Pentacles takes measured, well-thought-out risks. Like this, I do not tend to jump headlong into a risky situation without weighing all risks and alternatives. Perhaps the strength I bring to tarot is my commitment to learning the practice of tarot and my thoughtful analysis which helps me to choose a realistic and measured plan of action in many situations.

Position Three: What Limits Do I Bring To My Study Of Tarot

8 of Swords

I said Eight of Swords. It might be sort of an obvious and not terribly creative choice, but it certainly fits. When I am feeling particularly bad I lose sight of my thoughtful steps forward and feel trapped and alone. I become blind to the many resources and forms of support that can free me, even when they are in fact right next to me. This blindness would be a limit in my study of tarot, but even in the short time I have been learning tarot I can already tell it is a good tool to help me see through my blindfold.

King of Swords

Tarot said King of Swords. Anthony Louis in Tarot: Plain and Simple says, “You may be acting in an overly cool and intellectual manner to the exclusion of feelings and softer ways of relating to others. … You need to consider whether you are out of touch with your feelings and perhaps afraid of entering into an intimate relationship with another” (292). Benebell Wen’s Holistic Tarot says that the King of Swords “has a tendency to be too rigid … a man firm with friends and firm with enemies … [he] expects himself to uphold a rigid code of conduct, but he does not stop there; he also expects everyone around him to uphold the same rigid code” (208-209). Those are all 100% fair statements about myself. I have been told by more than one person on more than one occasion that I have extremely high expectation of others. These are indeed the same high expectations I hold for myself. And this is indeed rigid. This is the stubborn, unbudging part of myself as the Tarot Donkey.  I expect others to put the same amount of thought and analysis into their treatment of me that I put in for my treatment of others. This is actually pretty rare. I think far more often than others. Like all traits represented in the tarot, this is a characteristic with a light side and a shadow side. This makes it hard for me to embrace the Three of Cups part of myself. Fun doesn’t usually involve analysis. Like the King of Swords I understand some situations are gray and I try to assess what would be best in each scenario. But like the King of Swords, once I have made my ruling it often solidifies to stone like the crystals on his crown. In this card, he looks over a yellow-brown landscape with rigid columns. It looks pretty lonely. But the tree might represent the softer more nurturing piece that can emerge when hard, logical analysis is not given priority in all situations.

Both of these cards were Swords. In a future post I plan to write about my strong identification with the Queen of Swords, but in a nutshell Swords can speak about loss, aggression, and warriors. After the losses I experienced in childhood I can be quite the “tough cookie.” And that is, of course, not always the best course of action.

Position Four: A Key Lesson I Can Learn From Tarot

The Moon

I chose The Moon. I think a key lesson I can learn is how to be better in tune with my subconscious, to work through my darker aspects of self. As I said above, I share many not-so-wonderful characteristics in common with the King of Swords. The Moon symbolizes the deeper and more intuitive parts of the mind and how these parts influence us when they surface. Louis says, “Your gut feelings may be more reliable than logical analysis. … The Moon card asks us to reflect on our primitive origins in the animal world and in the collective unconscious” (106). There are some more negative connotations associated with The Moon, such as deceitfulness, but this card made me think about a greater awareness and synthesis between the conscious and unconscious, so that is what I am considering a possible key lesson.

Nine of Wands

Tarot said the Nine of Wands. Another eerily appropriate message from tarot! Benebell Wen tells me, “The Seeker feels like he or she is in a defensive, protective mode; like he or she has to fight to defend his or her territory. … It is worth noting that the Seeker’s protective fortress is not quite as impenetrable as the Seeker believes. Note how far apart each of the wands is set” (142). Despite the fact that I desire close and trusting relationships, particularly with my family of choice, I am very often still standing behind my (not all that effective) fortress of emotional walls. Last weekend alone is a good indicator of how weak my defenses really are. I put up a good front, but send a strong wind my way and down I go. A key lesson I can learn from tarot could be how to disassemble my walls rather than fearfully and stubbornly hold my ground.

Position Five: How I Can Be Open To Learning And Developing

Seven of Pentacles

I chose the Seven of Pentacles. Hard work and patience have to go into something before I can enjoy the fruits of my labor. The card depicts a woman waiting with scythe in hand. I can be impatient, and I think an important thing for me to remember on this journey is to enjoy the journey. Enjoy the wait. Enjoy the process. Take pride in watching my skills and abilities grow rather than impatiently wanting to just have all my problems solved (ha!). This spring I planted a garden, and it was so hard to be patient! I wanted to see the flowers and the peppers and the squash, but I had to wait. There was no shortcut. I had to provide tender loving care and let the plants grow on their own timetable. I began taking pictures of the plants every few weeks, and when I compared pictures it was easier to see the wonderful progress that had taken place. It made it exciting and fun! I think this journal will be something like those pictures. Snapshots for me to look back on when I’m feeling impatient to show me or remind me how far I have actually come.

The Devil

Tarot chose The Devil. At first I wasn’t sure what to think when this card came up. After looking through my books I have an idea about what this could represent. It might be my inability to let go. In my case not of material things, but of my “hang-ups.” To let go of my sad little fortress and to stand vulnerable to allow real connection. If I am unable to connect deeply, is my so-called “safety” worth it? It’s not an easy thing. That reminds me of the saying, “The devil you know is better than the one you don’t.” Apparently I’m clinging to the devil I know — a lonely but “safe” place — rather than leaping into the arms of what I fear could be another devil: to give myself freely and to be emotionally battered or rejected all over again. I can be open by letting go, bit by bit. Above, the devil’s coat is full of things like masks, a jawbone, a fly, a watch, bat wings, a ring. Maybe I can take off my coat one thing at a time. Drop a mask and later a bat wing and later something else.

Position Six: The Potential Outcome Of My Tarot Journey

Six of Swords

I chose the Six of Swords. This represents a journey away from something bad and on to a better place. The child in the front of the boat represents hope while the swords in the back can represent the baggage I still have. No big life journey like this is every really over, so for me in this card the outcome is getting further away from the bad place and heading toward something better. As I achieve some goals, I can set sail for ever nicer lands. Like in the devil card above, maybe I can throw some of those swords off the boat along my journey. It might not be realistic to think I’ll never carry any baggage with me, but I can lighten the load as I grow and learn.

The Magician

Tarot chose The Magician. When I was choosing my own cards for this spread, I almost chose The Magician for a few different positions, but he didn’t make the cut. So I’m pleased to see him here! The Magician represents the constructive power of the creative mind. What a wonderful way to see my outcome! Tarot is a little more happy or optimistic in this position than my choice of the Six of Swords, and I’m glad. It seems like an wonderful outcome for my hope in The Moon of connecting my conscious, unconscious, and collective unconscious. He has all four elements laid out on his work table and seems confident and connected with each of them; this seems to reflect not only skill, but balance. The Magician’s creative powers also reflect both of my position one cards, which were each threes. What an uplifting card to end this reading with! And I also really, really love his little hat and his little mouse/rat friend perched on his shoulder.

I think because The Magician is such a hopeful card for me in this spread that I will choose him to carry with me through the rest of this course. 🙂