I found this spread while browsing through the book I’m looking for something that would feel appropriate to work with this week. This reading fits beautifully with a conversation I’ve been having with a friend about forgiving ourselves and changing familial patterns that impact our lives.
I decided to modify it and only pull four cards from the 8 in this spread. I asked:
- How do I forgive what was done to me? 10 of Batons Rx
- How can I reclaim what I lost, what was taken from me or what I’ve kept hidden? 7 of Sword
- What does my soul need to be whole again and to flourish once more? Le Mat
- How can I mend my damaged soul? Justice
The figure on the 10 of Batons is so burdened that she cannot even see the path in front of her. She is so caught up in the responsibility, the weight that she bears, she cannot even see the path ahead. Reversed I believe this card is telling me it’s time to let this burden go. The burdens of past harms and abuses is exactly that – the past. Nothing I do now can change what has already happened. It’s very similar to the situation with my brother-in-law. Were there things that could have been done in the past that would have made this situation significantly better? Of course, but they didn’t happen. Nothing I do now changes that. Carrying the burden of my brother-in-law’s long-term care should never have been mine. Even though it will be hard to put him in someone else’s care that doesn’t mean I’m at fault, or that I am doing anything wrong. The only way to forgive what was done to me is to let it go. Just drop that burden to the ground and walk away. Simple in concept, a little more challenging in execution
The figure on the 7 of Epees looks behind her, not just to see if the coast is clear but also to ensure that Le Mat was able to begin her journey. She wants to assure herself that her efforts were not in vain. Similarly to the message of the reversed 10 of Batons, this card’s message feels very clear to me. The only way to reclaim what I lost is to literally go and grab it and walk away. I need to revisit who I used to be before. This is a message that’s come up for me a number of times it is a work in progress. I see this card is reaffirming and reinforcing that. It’s also interesting that she is carrying five swords and leaving two behind. This brings to mind the concept that I am going to be moving forward with my life and pieces of me will be left behind because I have lost my husband and because Edward will no longer be a dominant part of my life. Just looking at this card next to Le Mat also reminds me that eventually Edward and I will be going in separate directions. I will be moving forward, while still keeping an eye on him, to the next phase in my life. He will be The Fool, moving forward to the next phase in his.
Le Mat shows me that I need to be more willing to take chances; to have more faith in myself and trust that this journey will take me in the direction I need to go. I need to let it be about the journey and the joy and the new experiences and not about some specific goal. One of the things I’ve noticed about myself is that I often won’t try new things because I feel the need to study for months or years first so that I can get it perfect. Sometimes that really takes the fun out of it. I think the fool is showing me that I need to bring more fun and a more whimsical sense of adventure into my life and not worry so much about goals being achieved. I’ve already lived that life and it’s time to let it go and move in a different direction.
One of the messages I’m receiving from Justice appearing in answer to this question is that one way to mend my soul is to stop being so harsh on myself. I need to be fair to myself and I also need to be fair to those who have “trespassed against” me. This reading reminds me of the Our Father where the congregants say “forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us”. I think it’s important to remember that I have done wrong probably as often as I have been wronged. That’s not always a pleasant fact to accept, but if I’m being fair and impartial I have to acknowledge it. And I think the only way to truly heal what damage remains in my soul is to understand that it is part of being human. That doesn’t mean I can’t work on improving it or attempting to make reparations to those I’ve wronged. It does mean I need to try being more clear sighted and impartial when looking at these past offenses.
The overall message I get from this reading is that my soul is not quite is damaged as I feared. There is still work to be done, but I truly believe that our journey through life is all about doing this work. If there’s nothing left to achieve then what’s the point. Despite the fact that the focus of this reading is mending a damaged soul, it has helped me realize that my soul is healing and transforming. I almost get the sense it’s like our lungs when we finally quit smoking. It may take years, but if we take care of our body there is every chance our lungs will return to a healthier condition. I think that’s where my soul is right now on its way to returning to its pink and healthy condition. It may bear some scars and damage that will never truly heal but that doesn’t mean it’s irreparably broken. That gives me a lot of hope and happiness.