I have developed a daily devotional practice honoring the Earth mother, the nature spirits, the ancestors, the gods and goddesses that my people honored as well as specific individual deities with whom I feel a stronger connection. I try to keep it fairly simple; offering nuts to the Earth mother, critter food to the nature spirits and tea to the ancestors and the gods. I also used tea for the offering when I’m honoring a specific deity or ancestor, except my husband – he gets coffee. So far this seems to work out very well. After making an offering to a specific ancestor or deity, I take an omen ADF style. When the ancestor or deity is Irish, I use my Celtic Wisdom Tarot for the omen. For my Norse deities I pull a rune. Usually this works fine but every so often things get confusing.
One of the deities that I am trying to build a stronger relationship with is The Morrigan. I have felt drawn to her for many years, but haven’t actually taken any steps to enhance that bond. So recently when I made my first offering to her as part of my daily devotional practice, I received The Shaper (Empress) reversed as my omen/message. As soon as I saw this card I heard a voice in my head telling me “I am not your mother and this is not going to be a kinder, gentler relationship”. Honestly this felt completely appropriate and typical of the kind of energy that I have often felt while working with The Morrigan. She’s not soft and cuddly, and if that’s what I’m looking for she would not be the best goddess with whom to align myself.
The next time I made an offering the card I drew was the Augury of Skill (Ace of Wands) reversed. The image on the card represents the Irish deity Lugh and his spear, which is considered one of the treasures of the Tuatha de Danann. One of the aspects described to Lugh is that he is “many skilled”. So I can see him being associated with the suit of Wands because he is a source of creativity. However having this show up reversed is the message I received confused me a little bit.
The next day the deity that I honored is The Dagda, the Good Father of the Tuatha de Danann, a god of great knowledge, a skilled warrior, and an inspired musician. He possesses a cauldron from which none walk away hungry. He also happens to be considered by many to be the husband of The Morrigan. On a personal note, my husband always struck me as a wonderful embodiment of The Dagda’s energy manifested on this plane. When I pulled a card to receive my message from him, I received the Queen of Battle, The Morrigan. In my head I heard a voice telling me “you need to make sure you understand who she is and what she will be requiring of you”. In other words I had to make sure I had made “right” my relationship with The Morrigan.
So to help me figure out the best way to do this I pulled three more cards for clarification. I asked The Morrigan what was the best way to establish a “right” relationship with her? I drew Woman of Battle Rx, Quest of Art, and Woman of Art (Page of Air Rx, 10 of Water & Page of Water). When I looked at these cards I got distracted by the figures from Irish mythology and folklore that they represented. The Woman of Battle is Queen Maeve. The 10 of Art shows the Salmon of Wisdom being found in The Well of Segais. The Woman of Art represented by Boann, the goddess of the Boyne River whose mythology is also associated with The Well of Segais. My initial response to reading these cards is that The Morrigan was showing me that our relationship will be a battle but not one of the mind. She doesn’t really need to work on my intelligence or mental abilities, because I am fairly comfortable and confident in these areas. However the presence of the 10 and Page of Water suggest that where we will battle is the realm of emotions, the heart. I decided to pull the matching cards from the Förhäxa Tarot to help clarify things for me. It also intrigued me that the two Water cards are connected with a well known as a source of great wisdom. In other words, if I want to actually acquire wisdom, not just knowledge, I need to dive into The Well of my own emotions.
Looking at these cards I had to laugh. The wasp-like shape of the Queen of Air reinforces the idea that I’m going to get stung with some things, will be hurt, but ultimately will be helped. The only way for me to move forward is to let go of the past. The Page of Air Rx suggests that in the past focusing more on my intelligence, logic, and knowledge was a way of protecting myself. If I became like Mr Spock, I wouldn’t have to worry about being hurt by the slings and barbs of others. In some ways, I see myself as Sheldon from Big Bang Theory. I may be insensitive and seem heartless, but most times it’s because I just don’t understand what it is people want or expect from me. I know I should offer distressed people a hot refreshing beverage but don’t always understand why. The roots of that developed as an effort to protect my very soft inner center from the pain of friends who betrayed me or classmates who mocked me. I understand that in many cases they were as clueless as I was, but those barbs dug deep and still reside in my soul. As a result, I put on very thick armor to pretend none of it impacted me, didn’t bother me. In reality I was curled up and crying on the inside.
Similar messages have appeared for me numerous times over the past few months. It has become clear that one of the lessons I need to learn moving forward is to grow more comfortable with that side of my nature; to explore my inner emotions. This is rarely something I will do voluntarily. So it makes perfect sense that the only lens through which I would be willing to explore this side of my nature is the one provided by The Morrigan. She’s not going to cuddle me and Pat me on the back saying “there, there”. Instead she is basically going to slap me at the back of the head and say “put on your big girl panties, and keep going. All of this is in the past. It can’t hurt you anymore unless you let it”. The truth is I know that, but very much like exercising or eating right, that’s often the harder choice to make, so I avoid it. The Morrigan is showing me she’s not going to let me avoid this anymore. I’m both a little terrified and excited. This will really be uncharted territory for me.