I am not kidding, these are the things I deal with. Repeating cards, decks that think they know more than me. And of course, they do.
I'm not done with the Devil yet, so it seems.
It's not wrong to indulge in our baser desires from time to time, on the contrary, balance is what makes us whole individuals. The Devil, however, does not speak of balance. The Devil twists the perfect alchemy of Temperance, turning it into something ugly, and what once served is now obsession.
For example, it is not wrong to like your things neat and tidy, but when it is crippling to not have them so, the act of mad scouring is not an act of control, but of being controlled.
Another piece of the Devil is that the worse we feel about ourselves, the more we turn to the behaviors he speaks of, and the worse we feel. It is a cycle. Feel like crap, drink a bottle of wine, stuff a box of Twinkies down our gullets, buy fantastically expensive Jimmy Choo shoes we can't really afford. No one understands me, I am too disgusting for human contact, who cares if I download 100 MB of porn and hole up in a dark room all day? It's my life.
There is popular belief to call the Devil the Christian Lucifer, Satan, but that is inaccurate. The Devil of tarot cards is more accurately related to Pan, the merry, randy goat man of Greek myth, or Dionysus, lost in the pleasures of the flesh. The medieval Christian Church deemed these things unholy, so they came, of course, from "the devil." It's much easier to blame an outside entity for our addictions, obsessions, and general unhealthy behaviors. "The devil made me do it." The devil inside of us is more fearful, and thusly harder to face, than any other. It would be more palatable to blame a ferocious demon for the nasty things we do, to ourselves and others, than to look deep inside and realize that just as God is in all of us, so the devil can be, too. And that notion is less appealing.
For the record, it is my belief that Lucifer, the fallen angel, is probably so beautiful it would hurt to look on him, because beauty is enticing.
I have had the Devil appear for people who need to let go and let loose, invite a little more pleasure into their lives, but for me, today, I think it is about unraveling the ties in my life that are no longer healthy. There are people and things we bind ourselves to, exquisite silver cords stretching between us, ensuring constant link and empathy, but sometimes those cords transform into chains, and it is important to recognize when that has happened, and then be prepared to undo those ties.
Update: Still for trade or sale : one less loved Deviant Moon tarot.
Of course I should get the Devil today. Why not?
Well, I am sorely tempted to stay home today, even though I know I shouldn't. I am battling anxiety pretty deeply, and I am worried I am one mean look away from a complete breakdown, which of course can't happen at home, unless you count the dirty looks I shoot myself in the mirror sometimes.
I am so tempted to just stay home, where I can snuggle my NicNoodle all day, and escape into books. The Devil signifies what scares us, too, and things we are bound to. When anxiety surpasses normal levels, everything is scary, and too much to deal with.
The Devil is negative thinking, bad habits, temptations that are nearly irresistible. Today, I would count myself lucky to just get through.
My Devil is anxiety, sneaky, insidious, insistent that it is all my fault, and I should just pull myself together.
For sale or trade - One well used, although gently, once loved Deviant Moon tarot deck(emphasis on once). Has a bit of a bad attitude and a snarky sense of humor. Has no filter, and is likely to embarrass you on your blog. Will trade for a soft, sweet Whimsical tarot.
Deviant Moon, you and your Lovers card can kiss my, well you get the picture.
The thing about love, is, often times, it does not seem to love us back. The thing about love is, it's dangerous, and it's sweet poison can be so seductive, so entrancing, that we willingly stand there and let the viper bite us. We can lose ourselves in it, and while that can be the best feeling in the world, it can also be a dangerous place to put ourselves in. That is because to love truly, and to love wholly, we have to be vulnerable, naked (not just physically), and we have to take that risk, over and over, moment by moment. And we have to be able to trust someone else with holding the very essence of who we are in their hands.
There is another take on this particular image, one that just occurred to me, after my jaded, mean side got to have its' say. She is lost in the rapture, completely surrendered to him. She is literally swooning, and he is holding her up. Her eyes are closed, lost in the ecstasy of the moment, but his are open wide. Is he offering himself to the snake, thereby protecting her?
Patrick Valenza's, the deck creator, take on the card is thus: Locked in a passionate hold, two lovers embrace by a desert lake. The moon casts a hypnotic trance upon them. A snake injects them with venom.
Hmm, less helpful than one might hope, although a lake in a desert is a pretty rare thing. That would be a place where one would want to be, a place to refresh themselves and be filled with the necessary supplies to move on. But, when one dares not trust to hope, even good things can look dangerous.
Airy Gemini rules the Lovers, and in the RWS version, the archangel Raphael, who has the power to heal, looks down upon Adam and Eve, before the fall, yet the infamous serpent is still there, waiting his part. She is looking at the angel, and he (the human) is looking at her. Gemini facilitates the soul deep communication needed to integrate these two halves of a whole, and the angel Raphael provides the healing that will bind them together, like broken bones that knit tighter than before. The key, though, is that they have to be willing participants, and I am not sure that I am. This requires a trust that I am not sure I have yet, a trust in Spirit, who the angel willingly serves, a trust in another person, and, probably deepest of all, a trust in myself that I do not feel sure of anymore.
These images are from the Deviant Moon tarot by Patrick Valenza for US Games Systems, Inc and the Aquatic Tarot by Andreas Schroter.
So I am going to be working my way through the book Intuitive Astrology by Elizabeth Rose Campbell, and you all get to go along with me.
I am fascinated with the science of astrology, but I am overwhelmed with the sheer mass of information that can be found, and it is quite daunting.
So, I considered, Why do I want to learn astrology? The answer is, as for many things, so I can relate it to tarot and learn more and grow further, and also so I can know myself better, so that I can continue to be true to my own self, because that is where I believe true wholeness lies, for me, at least. That led me to begin with a book that focuses on personal astrology, as I feel this will be the best way for me to learn and apply what I find out to my working of tarot.
So, I embark on this journey. There are quite a few sites where one can find out their chart, in great detail. I got this one here.
From page 27 - Find the Sun in your life by completing this sentence:
Above all else I want to - shine bright, and be who I really am. Above all else, I want to feel whole, and good about myself. I want to dwell in the light, and not be frightened by my own shadow.
I want to love and be loved, fully, and wholly, and without fear.
I want to be a good mother, and raise my children to be proud of who they are, whole, and happy themselves.
I want my life to be fragrant with the presence of Spirit, gentle yet awe inspiring, and magical.
I want to write beautiful stories, string words together in such a way that they are changing, and life affirming.
I want to live, experience everything, taste it all. I want to eat good food, and drink good wine, feel my toes get kissed by waves as they dig into white sand. I want to swoosh down a mountainside, snowflakes caught in my hair, and most of all I want to never, ever regret a single moment.
My Sun is in Taurus, represented by the Hierophant, in traditional tarot. The purpose of the Hierophant is to bring the sacred from Heaven to earth, echoing the Lord's Prayer, "Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth, as it is in Heaven." I do not care for the traditional RWS image of the holy man, who seems anything but, preferring gentler images, such as this one, from the Shadowscapes Tarot, ones that speak of the goodness of God, of His loving care, of His infinite compassion. My God is one of kindness, and mercy, and all good things flow from Him, and He has not destroyed the Goddess, but is fully integrated with Her, appearing to each of us as we can best understand.
I crave stability, and beauty, and gentility in my life, and I try so hard to be a sweet presence in the lives I touch.
These images are from the Shadowscapes Tarot by Stephanie Pui-mun Law, forthcoming from Llewellyn.
What is your favorite card? Yes, you, the deck. Which card do you like best?
Five of Wands. I should have known. You like to shake things up, and you are not afraid of conflict. When chaos is the overriding energy, you like to wade right in to the heat of it, because calm must be restored. Inner doubts and fears can arise, causing a mess in one's inner landscape, and although you do not enjoy the strife, you do enjoy the sorting out.
Fives are the shake up, the change, the tempering fire. Wands are the passion, and naturally, when dealing with so much fire, one is bound to get burned sometimes. The thing about uncomfortable emotions, even pain, is that they cause us to do what is needful. Getting a minor burn that hurts like a mutha keeps us from getting a third degree burn that does not hurt, but causes irreparable damage. We yelp and pull our hand back before it can get much worse.
So, I can draw the conclusion that you like to help me make sense of the inner turmoil I feel sometimes, sorting it out, thread by thread when needed, and that you enjoy being the voice of reason in what can be a pretty unreasonable place at times.
This image is from Deviant Moon Tarot by Patrick Valenza for US Game Systems, Inc.
Well, today I have managed to draw my cards in the morning, rather than the evening, which is fortunate because I work this evening, grudgingly.
I do not feel as icked out by the Page today as I did yesterday, and since we are stuck together for two days in a row, I suppose this is a good thing. The resemblance of this draw to yesterday's is striking though. Both led off with the Page of Cups, both with a rather somber Major in the middle, and both capped off at the end with a card that me represents love, stability, and every good thing in life.
Justice always leaves me with a little cold feeling in the pit of my stomach, though it is associated with my ascending sign, Libra, and the ascendant in astrology being the mask one wears to the world. Justice, to me, smacks of getting what one deserves, and I suppose that I feel I deserve only not so good things, so I am not usually thrilled to see it.
The Four of Wands is one of my favorite cards in this deck. The couple is clasping hands in front of their humble abode. They are making a vow, a promise, binding themselves, one to another. Fours indicate stability, and Wands concern passion, spirit. My particular make up requires that I have a lot of stability in my life, so it is always good to see this card.
For today, it seems I can expect a message about love, that should be greeted with a cool, calm rationale. Making my reaction balanced and logical will actually give the message the space and air it needs to root itself firmly and blossom into a stabilizing vine. Because the middle card is a Major, I feel that my reaction to the message is the key component in how the situation will play out, so I will have to remember to keep my fire grand trine under control and let my cool, Libra mask show to the world today.
Which, truly, does not make a lot of sense to me right now, but I am sure by the end of the day, it will!
If I was reading these cards for someone else, I would probably feel a strong indication of a marriage proposal, as the Page is the herald of all things love, and the Justice figure looks very much like he is presiding over a marriage ceremony for the couple in the Four of Wands. However, no one wants to marry me, to the best of my knowledge, and that is really just as well, since I do not want to marry anyone, either. *grin*
Oh yes, the base card, what I consider hidden knowledge, or something the Querent (who is me in this case) does not really want to face, is the King of Swords, Libra again. The King of Swords is the court card that most resembles Justice, so it is affirming to see it here again. He balances both sides of an issue before coming to a conclusion, applying keen intelligence and good advice, and that is going to be an important energy for me today.
Update: Well, today did not turn out exactly the way I expected. My message of love turned out to be a bit, err, corrupt, with the offer of an artistic partnership that would most decidedly not be in my best interests. Fun, yes, but good for me, no. I am a little too into this guy who has a little bit too little to offer, and I tend to lose myself in that kind of romance too easily. I got excellent advice from a friend, and I have decided that although it would be fun to take him up, it would not be stable, which is, above all, my most important priority. *sigh* Why does it seem like love doesn't always love us?
These images are from Deviant Moon tarot by Patrick Valenza for US Games Systems, Inc.
Who knows why I do the things I do sometimes? I pulled three cards today, just because of the way the wind is blowing (and it is blowing here).
So, according to these cards, the Page tickling the chin of the little fish he is carrying around with him, the Hanged Man in stoic silence as he looks to the happy family in the Ten of Cups, I should be getting a message about love, which I may have to wait patiently for, but will bring me something I desire above all else.
That's a nice dream, but this is the Deviant Moon I am working with, haha.
That fish is completely at the mercy of the Page. A Cup may sustain a fish, but it is certainly not the optimal place for it to live. The Page may think he is doing the fish a favor, but wouldn't the more compassionate thing be to let the fish free in the water behind him? The Page thinks he understands fishy nature so well; he even emulates the fish by donning a cloak that makes him look like one. But he really doesn't know anything. He is walking away from the Hanged Man, selfishly congratulating himself on holding the magic fish in his hands.
The Hanged Man has time hanging from his heel. He takes this "timeout" with a hard face, but I do not really believe his hands are tied behind him. He can hop on down from there any time he chooses. He is just biding his time.
The mother figure in the Ten of Cups cannot stop touching her man. She can't believe he is home, and safe, and she will never take another moment for granted. He can eat crackers in her bed anytime now, and leaving his socks on the floor doesn't seem like such a big deal, after not having him for so long.
These cards remind me that I have some things I need to do before I can expect to have that "traditional" family again. The kidkins and I are for sure a family, with my brother, D, but I want all of that, and more. I need to look at my motivations, and question if I really know as much about relationships as I think I know. I need to go ahead and do my grieving, and stop trying to put it off, or act like I don't care. And I need to appreciative for all that I already do have.
The shadow card for the reading is the Sun, hiding, just like the sun here today, which always causes me to have trouble regulating my own moods. I crave sunshine, I need it. The card reminds me to go ahead and let the Sun shine bright in my inner world, so that I can admire everything about it that is good, and right, and working, and see clearly those things that are not.
These images are from Deviant Moon tarot by Patrick Valenza for US Games Systems, Inc.
This is a good day to just rest, let my mind be at ease, and not worry about the "stuff."
My Little Big Man broke his arm yesterday. Well, more accurately, his arm was broken when a rather large child tackled him while they were playing football. Which is a perfectly reasonable thing to do when playing football. But we all know mothers can't be reasonable, not when a little one is hurt, anyway.
It was painful and stressful for him, painful and stressful for me, and today we are just laying around, making oatmeal pecan cookies, reading, and resting. Which my cards seem to think is exactly what we should be doing.
This image is from Deviant Moon Tarot by Patrick Valenza for US Game Systems, Inc.
I am not a visual artist. The creators of the decks I use are. I try very hard to give proper credit to the artist when I use an image.
My most oft used deck on this blog is the Deviant Moon Tarot, created by Patrick Valenza and published by U.S. Games Systems, Incorporated. Check out his site to buy some fantastic Deviant Moon stuff, or a deck of your own!
A lovely, but digital only, Rider Waite Smith clone deck is the Aquatic by Andreas Schroter. You are allowed to downlaod and use the images.
They also make me tell you that readings are for entertainment purposes only. I'll tell you on my own that if you change your life based on a few cards something is not right there.
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“What lies behind you and what lies in front of you, pales in comparison to what lies inside of you.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson~
“Life is full of beauty. Notice it. Notice the bumble bee, the small child, and the smiling faces. Smell the rain, and feel the wind. Live your life to the fullest potential, and fight for your dreams.” ~Ashley Smith~
“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” ~Rumi~
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our Light, not our Darkness, that most frightens us.” ~Marianne Williamson~
“Your daily life is your temple and your religion. When you enter into it take with you your all.” ~Kahlil Gibran~
"First you jump off the cliff and you build wings on the way down." ~Ray Bradbury~
“If I discover within myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.” ~C.S. Lewis~
"Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love." ~Rainer Maria Rilke~