Self-confidence in my ability to excel professionally! I tend to assume I won’t be able to master something enough to be able to really excel, which is a real confidence killer. I think I’ve missed many opportunities by not believing I can do something.
Position Two: Old way of doing things
King of Wands
Rather than assuming I’ve got it figured out like the king, I tend to assume I don’t. I assume others know more than I do and that any mistake I make will make me look like a fool.
Position Three: New way of doing things
Four of Wands
I love Huszka’s Four of Wands. It’s about awakening and stepping into the sun. Being comfortable and letting good things come.
All wands! This made me think of the work and excitement I’ve been putting into planning for my tarot business. It’s a little scary, but I’ve been doing much better at pushing through my self doubt and feeling confident in my ability to create something good — maybe great!
In addition to mimicking the shape of the full moon, I also drew the shadow card to represent what the light of the full moon may cast a shadow on.
The Full Moon
Six of Wands, Eight of Wands, Queen of Pentacles, The Hierophant, Six of Pentacles
What I see here is that even though it doesn’t feel like I’ve really accomplished much, I should stop thinking about what I think I “should have” accomplished and look instead at the real progress that has been made. I have been much more compassionate and forgiving with myself. I’m seeking balance and deeply examining my beliefs. What do I wish to hang on to and what do I wish to let go of? What do I need to rewrite? These things are actions and are successes.
Five of Pentacles
The work I’m doing isn’t easy, and it can often leave me feeling defeated. A definite shadow. If I keep in mind that what I’m doing is important and is valuable and necessary, perhaps that can help mitigate the feeling of defeat.
This reading is a little abstract for me, but I’ll do my best! I think I’ll look at it like where I’m at in my own life cycle.
Position One: What turns the Wheel?
Queen of Wands
Position Two: What outer change will come?
Page of Wands
Adventures will come my way. I may not know what exactly they will be or when they’ll come, but they’ll be available. I just have to choose which ones to tackle!
Position Three: What inner change is possible?
Six of Wands
Victory! While I’ll never feel totally “fixed,” I contain the possibility of victories on my journey of self-healing. The Wheel of my journey rolls on, but I can celebrate the victory of a full turn, a new revolution.
Position Four: What new situation will I face?
Knight of Cups
I’m entering a new era of my life that calls for emotional action. For a long, long time I’ve been very reserved. I’ll be experiencing similar situations, but the new cycle I am in calls for me to offer up more of my emotional self. My action doesn’t have to be fast or reckless. The RWS Knight of Cups isn’t galloping away at high speeds. But I do need to be moving forward.
I like the depiction here of the hippo diving. She’s exploring emotional depths.
Position Five: What rises?
Folly rises. Silliness rises. I’m letting loose my inner prancing llama! (Or trying anyway, there’s a series of smaller ups and downs in this process.)
Position Six: What falls?
This card keeps showing up in kind of negative positions, which has me a little confused. But I’ll go again, then, with the shadow meaning: too high of expectations / ideals. These overly high ideals are falling away. Not all at once, but they are.
Position Seven: What is at the center?
Ten of Wands
Hard work is at the center! Hard work and motivation. The Wheel isn’t going to turn itself. Well, maybe it would, but I might not like where it would go. I’m pulling the strings I have control over to help guide it.
I have fallen off of the cleaning and exercising wagon and haven’t managed to crawl back on yet despite telling myself I’m ready and should be doing so. I decided to ask tarot today “What can I do to get back on track?”
Six of Wands – A card of victory. Take pride and great satisfaction in what I do! Think of the feeling of accomplishment I will feel after I’ve vacuumed or done yoga. I know that feeling is waiting for me, I just have to do the work to get there.
Page of Wands – Curiosity and enthusiasm. Rather then approach cleaning and exercising with hesitation or dread, I should look at them with fresh, enthusiastic eyes. Be a cute little chinchilla reaching for dandelion fluff in the wind 🙂
Ten of Swords – A card of defeat. I don’t feel emotionally defeated right now, like I did a few weeks ago. My behavior needs to catch up. I’m not defeated, don’t let my behavior reflect defeat in my environment and body.
I need to be enthusiastic, look forward to the feeling of accomplishment I will feel, and to not let my behavior reflect a defeat that isn’t there.
I am strong at taking quiet time to retreat from the world and allow inner contemplation and exploration of my unconscious.
Position Two: How am I weak?
Three of Pentacles
I am weak at allowing others to join me and help me on my journey. I can often be too fiercely independent.
Position Three: When do I need to be strong?
Queen of Pentacles
This card keeps coming to me in positions of encouragement! I need to be strong in being a part of and taking pleasure in the world around me. Balance my High Priestess strength with the Queen of Pentacles.
Position Four: When do I need to be weak?
Seven of Wands
I need to be weak at being defensive. My defense mechanisms are often impressively overactive. Like the little hedgehogs in this depiction, I see a large and scary shadow coming my way, and my spikes go right up. But maybe the shadow is deceiving.
Position Five: What strengthens me?
Six of Swords
I am strengthened by the journey I am on away from the person I used to be and toward a healthier and happier me. As I reach different milestones, they give me the strength to keep going and remind me that change is possible. “Old” me will always be a part of me, but I can bandage her wounds, feel compassion for her, and bring her along on the journey.
Position Six: What weakens me?
This is the first time I’ve ever encountered the Star. I think perhaps what would fit here is the shadow of the Star: sometimes I can become disheartened and upset when my ideal outcome doesn’t occur. Of course, this is pretty often because such is life. This idealism weakens me by making it difficult to go with the flow. Or a reverse meaning: pessimism. When my depression starts to get the upper hand it’s awfully hard to see the stars shining.
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?
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.
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.
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?
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.
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.