Oh, it’s a bad day. A sad, bad day. I decided to pull three cards to represent the three heartbreak swords piercing my heart.
Two of Wands
Uncertainty. A new horizon lies before me, but I don’t know if it’s one I want to see. It’s not where I wanted to go, but I don’t know how many choices I have. I’m afraid I may have to go there without someone I thought was my friend. “Two roads diverged in a yellow wood” and I don’t want to take either. I want to lay the dirt and cry.
Page of Swords
Even though I tend to lean sword-y, I’m feeling at a loss. I don’t know what to do or what to think. What is right or what is wrong. My thoughts feel confused and underdeveloped. I want change and justice and action, but I can’t actually make any of these things happen. In this situation when I think “earth of air” for the Page of Swords I just picture dirt and grass and tree bits being hurled around by a tornado. Chaos and loss are swirling around me.
Eight of Swords
Trapped, trapped, trapped. Even when I try to use the eight swords to cut my bonds loose, I just feel like I end up shredding my own skin and somehow being more tightly bound than before. I don’t know what the trick is to untying myself.
Position One: What calls me to rise up and become something new?
Knight of Swords
While this poor knight has a lot of negative connotations, in this position I’ll go with a positive one: passion for action in what I believe in. An inner voice within me calls for me to rise up and become something new. Stagnation is not a natural state for me, though depression can make it seem like it at times. If there is change to me made, I’m blazing the trail fueled by my own strong beliefs. Right now, this call is to set long-term plans to set up a tarot business.
Position Two: What can I become?
Ten of Pentacles
This card has really grown on me and become one of my favorites. It makes me feel warm and fuzzy. Between the Ten of Cups and the Ten of Pentacles, it is the “family” card I can relate to and appreciate the most. I can become stable and comfortable in my own skin, in the world around me. This transformation into someone new with focused purpose is a strongly positive force that can bring me the structured support and warmth of the Ten of Pentacles.
Position Three: How will my life change?
The Hanged Man
I will be able to surrender more often. I’m not always sure what battles are mine to fight and when I need to surrender. By having this inner focus and direction, my life will be more peaceful since I won’t always feel like I’m searching for something I’m missing.
Position Four: How will my change affect others?
Three of Swords
Hopefully I will be able to help people who are experiencing or have experienced some Three of Swords pain and help them find the power within themselves to grow and move beyond this pain. This would be a great privilege to be able to help people.
Position Five: How am I called to answer?
King of Swords
Master the cards (of course, learning will always continue) and be very logical in the setup of my business. Of course, I shouldn’t go overboard and forget about intuition or emotion, but in the initial process of setting everything up, logic and knowledge will be absolutely key to success.
Lots of swords indicate that logic and knowledge are important for this transformation, the Ten of Pentacles speaks to possible success, and the Hanged Man indicates that the transformation may bring inner peace.
Position One: What phase of the moon am I in — waxing, full, or waning?
When I first read this question I was really worried about how to read waxing, full, or waning from a card. But the World clearly says full!
Position Two: What benefits does it bring me?
It should give me the power and light necessary to explore the mysterious world of my unconscious during this new time in my life.
Position Three: How does it challenge me?
Two of Cups
As I’ve spoken of before, giving freely in love is a new and challenging experience. But the metaphor of a full moon certainly describes where I’m at as far as being ready to really give it a go. So it’s a challenge, but one I’m up for.
Position Four: How can I meet the challenge?
Eight of Cups
By leaving behind my carefully constructed walls and assumptions about the world and how love works (or doesn’t). The Eight of Cups acknowledges that it’s not the world’s easiest choice, but the choice is made and I am moving forward.
Position Five: What will come next?
Three of Swords
Go away, Three of Swords! I’m tired of seeing you! And what are you doing in this position?
Huszka’s little white book frames this as a card of letting go. While I am using logic to overcome my deeply emotional fears regarding relationships, it doesn’t mean it will be a painless transition. So perhaps this is a reminder that a new direction won’t automatically make it all sunshine and rainbows. There will be discomfort and possibly pain. This card also features a moon. So in this position I read that as deception. Any pain that comes will likely result from the irrational beliefs that I hold, so when it happens I should stop and examine the pain and the beliefs behind the pain.
This reading called for 1-3 cards for each position. So I decided to use the two decks with my favorite Star cards and to pull one card from each deck per position.
Position One: Hope
Three of Pentacles & Ace of Cups
Teamwork and a new emotional beginning. Perhaps these are good places to pin my hopes. Not so much in very specific ideas (the Star has told me a couple of times already I’m too idealistic), but more in the process itself. Opening myself up to accepting help and cooperation and feeling hopeful about this new emotional beginning.
Position Two: Guidance
Six of Cups & The Lovers
Generosity and connection. The guidance here may be, “Give more of yourself to those you trust. Foster a closer connection, strengthen that trust into something more solid. And don’t forget to include generosity toward yourself.”
Both cards are sixes, speaking to harmony. A true harmony is not possible if I am always holding something back.
Position Three: Peace
The World & Knight of Cups
Slow down and appreciate the interconnectedness of everything. Take time to make myself whole. Be the dreamy Knight of Cups and take in the World with love and wonder.
Position Four: Healing
Knight of Swords & Three of Swords
Healing actually takes a great deal of courage. As I’ve spoken about a few times recently, even when I know change is possible it can be difficult to take the steps necessary to make it happen. The unknown is scary, and the “bad” present suddenly looks like a safe bet. So it takes courage to change, and at the same time I will always carry some degree of hurt and trauma with me. As much as I would absolutely love there to be a final threshold to cross and be able to yell, “I’m all better!”, that’s just not going to happen. There will always be damaged parts of myself, but I have to be brave and to mend those parts that can be put back together or remade.
Animism Tarot message
A major theme of connection: teamwork, generosity, and the universe. All followed by courage. Connection is vitally important, but there’s an acknowledgment that it’s not always the easiest thing to accomplish.
Gypsy Palace Tarot message
Love is a major theme: love as beginning, love as connection, love as slow and dreamy-eyed, and love as pain. Again, love is important, and the acknowledgement that it’s not always easy either.
This has been such an interesting spread, especially when I looked at the two decks’ cards separately. Such a similar message!
I found this great Thanksgiving spread I’d like to try out. I’m doing it a day early because we’re getting ready to head over to spend the next couple days with family, and I won’t have anywhere private to do this. (I’m not exactly “out” yet about my tarot reading.)
This seems a lot more gloomy than I was anticipating. Time to dive in and see what some of this might mean.
Position One: What sustains me (Turkey)
Five of Pentacles
This seemed like a tough card in this position, but I pulled out Joanna’s little white book, and some of the key words she uses for this card can certainly fit here: “truth, adaptation, endurance.” These little kiwis have been through a lot, but they still have each other and they know this moment is not the end. Better things will come. They just have to endure the present moment. I think it is fair to say that this sense of endurance is something that sustains me. I’ve been through bad times, but I’ve learned to stick with those who love me and to know in the midst of sorrow and hardship that better things will come.
Position Two: What completes me (Stuffing)
The Wheel of Fortune
A change in my life for the better. The period of my life defined by pain has ended. A new era has dawned, and even though some of it is mysterious and beyond my control, it’s a much better place to be. I love the image of a spider web as the Wheel. This can symbolize the interconnectedness of all things. I may only be a thread in the web, but I am both an essential piece (valuable, with purpose) and connected to the others (attached, not in control). Additionally, spider webs look pretty delicate, but they’re quite strong.
Position Three: What I don’t get enough of (Green Bean Casserole)
Ace of Swords
At first I was confused by this card in this position since I tend to be a sword-heavy person. But perhaps in this place it means clarity and courage. I think a lot and rely on my mind a lot, but it doesn’t mean I’ve felt brave about some of the changes I’d like to make, or clear on how to create these changes. I’ve not been seeing with the clear sight of the eagle.
I like what Joanna says, “Let the world speak. What we find may not be what we wanted, but it may be what we needed after all.”
Position Four: What I get too much of (Cranberry Sauce)
Ace of Wands
Well, I’ve already established that it’s not courage. I think with this Ace in this position, I think I’ve had too much fire and drive with too little direction to send it in. I want change, I’m ready for change, but I’ve got all this pent up energy. Without the clarity of the Ace of Swords, I can get burned by this energy.
Position Five: What I need to share (Bread)
One of the many meanings that the Magician conveys is “as above, so below,” and so also “as within, so without.” I have moments of confidence and pride in who I am on a deep level. I need to share that. I need to share myself, my talents, and my skills to create the “as within, so without” balance represented in the Magician.
Position Six: What I should enjoy more (Pie)
Nine of Wands
This is a card of defensiveness. When I first discovered this, I immediately related to it. The RWS depiction of someone with their flimsy fort of sticks was a symbolic depiction that spoke directly to me. In the Animism Tarot, we can see that this elephant had good reason to fight. She was being held captive. However, if we look closely, we can see that her chains are broken. She can run away now. I should enjoy my freedom more, rather than feeling like I’m still in the middle of a fight.
Position Seven: What my blessing is in life (Blessing)
Three of Swords
While this card represents heartbreak and pain most clearly, it also speaks to healing. I wouldn’t necessarily call my pain a blessing, but the sunrise after the storm is something a lot of people don’t get to see. For folks who live out their lives in mostly sunny days, a sunrise may not be something special. But as someone who spent the first two decades of her life in a dark and scary storm, the sunrise after was and continues to be a huge blessing. My blessing is that I escaped my pain (or the source of my pain, anyway), and I get to journey to greener pastures. I get to revel in the joy of many small kindnesses that others may take for granted.
That turned out much less gloomy than I thought it might at first glance. My pain is a part of me, but that doesn’t mean the pain itself stays central to who I am. It may shape me, but my life is about more than dwelling in the hurt.
Note: I swapped green bean casserole and cranberry sauce from their original positions in Arwen’s spread to better fit my Thanksgiving taste buds 🙂