I’ve been feeling spectacularly stupid lately. I’m second-guessing myself and questioning every decision I make. Much of this is the result of a bad judgment call I made a few weeks ago, prepaying someone for a job that hadn’t been completed yet. That person is now demanding more money to complete the work that should have been covered by the original payment. This is made me feel I’m on shaky ground, and caused me to feel like the first class fool. So I decided to do what I always do when I feel this way – work with my Tarot deck. I found the spread below in Sheilaa Hite Presents 101 Tarot Spreads by 20 Modern Tarot Masters Vol 1. I don’t necessarily need to explore why I feel foolish but how I can get rid of that sensation.
The Knight of Wands Rx reveals the I need to let go of the idea that I can handle things the way I could when I was younger or when I had John. I just don’t have the same energy level that I had when I was in my 30s or even 40s. The book offers this tidbit “Small issues steal focus from productive energy”. I think this is another way of saying that my energy is so scattered that I can’t focus on anything right now. I need to focus my energies on what’s really important and break free of the distractedness that is sapping my resolve. The truth is I’m not a good multitasker. So, instead of fighting against myself I need to start handling things one issue at a time and then move on to the next one.
The tower is a reminder that I’ve experienced three dramatic life-altering stressful issues all at once. That’s not an easy thing to process, and I need to allow myself to take the time necessary to process it. I haven’t fully processed John’s death. Trying to arrange for Edward to be settled somewhere, and selling this house on top of that is probably much too ambitious right now. Dealing with any one of these issues right now would be a challenge; trying to handle all three at once is insanity.
The Star is telling me that there is always hope. It always seems darkest before the dawn, but eventually there will be healing and a Star to guide me on my way. It’s something that can sustain me when things feel overwhelming.
The 4 of Pentacles Rx is reminding me that I need to work on not holding so tightly to things; not to be pennywise and pound foolish. I also think it’s a reminder not to ignore my own health and physical needs, which has been easy to do with what’s been going on.
It’s ironic, this reading told me exactly what I needed to hear right now to kickstart me and help me feel unstuck. It’s always fun when the Tarot gives me a smack upside the head and reality check.
The root of the matter, what you need to do to keep both your feet on the ground? 5 of Swords
Career, attitudes about work – are you following your heart’s desire or just surviving? Page of Swords Rx
Finances, attitudes about money – Money is energy; is your energy blocked or does it flow freely? Queen of Swords Rx
Connections and sharing – how do you let your guard down to share with others? The Star
Health & healing; how do you nurture & care for yourself? The Sun
First harvest you have planted, the garden and the seeds of your life – What are you reaping for yourself based on your attitudes and behaviors? What are you harvesting? 8 of Pentacles
Fruition achievements maturation fulfillment satisfaction success – what are you thankful for? Life Renewed (Judgement)
The figure on the Five of Swords is fierce and determined. She looks like she’s going into battle convinced of the rightness of her cause and that others will follow her. In the context of this reading, I think she reflects that fighting for our truth, fighting for what we believe in, fighting for our ideals can help keep us grounded. The world is a very scary place right now and it’s easy to get overwhelmed by what’s going on. I think the Five of Swords shows that defending what we believe in gives us purpose. The unfortunate flip side to this is that those who disagree with us will be equally vehement in defending their beliefs and ideals. Sometimes, that’s the way it goes.
The reverse Page of Swords suggested right now might be a time to reassess what you’re doing on a professional level. Something isn’t sitting right for you at the moment. Perhaps you just don’t believe in the value of your job the way you once did. You’ve lost your sense of purpose. In the context of this spread it suggests that you’re letting the logical path (staying in a job you may no longer be passionate about because it’s a secure income) outweigh your desire to feel committed to your work; to feel that it has meaning and value.
The reverse Queen of Swords shows that right now your energy is blocked, especially as it pertains to finances. If we connect this to the Page of Swords reversed, perhaps this Queen is reflecting that you’re blocked because, although you’re getting paid, your current job not nurturing your inner self; it’s not allowing you to live up to your ideals and your beliefs. If that is one of your core values, then this might be an area that you address so all that blocked energy can be freed.
The Star reflects the hopefulness and trust we might need to bring to connecting with others. Let’s face it any relationship requires a certain amount of faith because we open ourselves up to others as reflected by the childlike figure on this card. That also leaves us vulnerable to being hurt and betrayed. What The Star shows us is that even if this is the case, hope will remain as a light in the darkness to guide us through it. As many public service announcements remind LGBTQ+ youth, it will get better. In this reading, I think The Star reminds us that if we close ourselves off to meeting new people, to exploring relationships with those that seem unfamiliar or have different viewpoints, we risk becoming isolated and rigid.
This was an interesting card in this position. The Sun is usually symbolic of celebrating ourselves and embracing our successes but in this case it’s reversed. I think that’s telling us that we can’t celebrate ourselves and embrace our achievements until we can value ourselves. Perhaps this ties in with the reversed Page and Queen in terms of one’s attitude towards their career and money. If someone sticks to a job they detest in order to maintain a secure income it might impact their self-esteem and sense of self; cause untold levels of stress that negatively impact one’s health. It’s hard to celebrate yourself and acknowledge achievements if these things have no value to you because they’re in a field that you no longer find fulfilling. So maybe the key to unblocking this energy is free the stuck energy reflected in positions 2 and 3.
The 8 of Pentacles is a reminder that we get out of this life what we put into it. If we continue forcing ourselves to pursue a path that no longer brings a satisfaction it’s going to impact our relationships, our health our sense of self. I love the energy reflected in this card because it seems a perfect melding of Earth and fire; of the physical and the energetic; of money and career. In order to get to this place perhaps we need to look at the other blocked areas and get them unstuck.
Life Renewed reminds us that there is a way out of the darkness. We can emerge from all this blocked energy filled with dissatisfaction and self doubt by changing our mindset. We need to reassess and reevaluate what we’re doing and see if it’s providing the benefit we desired. We don’t always have to work at a job that is our hearts desire as long as it fulfills a need and only you can decide what that need truly is. The important thing is to recognize whether you’re feeling trapped by the situation and if so what can you do to change it because only you can lead yourself out of the shadows and into the light.
The three Swords cards at the core of this reading suggest that healing this situation is going to depend upon changing our perspective and mindset. We need to communicate more effectively with ourselves and listen to our inner voice. We might also find it useful to communicate more effectively with others in our lives so they understand our thoughts about a situation and whether we are truly satisfied and fulfilled. And if not, what they can do, if anything, to help us change it. It’s useful to remember that others in our lives cannot read our minds. If we don’t tell them what we’re thinking, we can’t become upset when they don’t fulfill our needs.
This card was actually drawn on January 23rd but it took me a couple of days to process it. I see it as the flip side to The Devil card that I drew on the 22nd and the reading I did in my previous post.
Having The Star appear so closely after The Devil shows that hope and healing are still possible even after such a harrowing experience. We can still find a light in the darkness no matter how how intense and overwhelming that Darkness might seem.
So, in exploring The Star’s message I pulled chords to answer the following questions:
How can we reinforce the thread of Hope offered in The Star? 2 of Cups Rx
What will heal the wounds left by The Devil? Temperance
How can we shine brightly again? 6 of Cups
What is the bright side to be found in this experience? The Magician Rx
What struck me about the reverse 2 of cups is that the image digests one way to re-enforce The Hope and healing shown in the store is by sharing our love and emotions, which we might usually keep between close friends and family or romantic partners, with others. We need to learn to embrace those that might be different and love them anyway. I may no longer practice Catholicism but the energy of this car reminds me very much of Jesus’s teachings to love one another as we would want to be loved; to turn the other cheek and forgive those who have hurt us. Such a simple but powerful message and one that I think will ultimately serve us all in the long run.
Temperance speaks of being forged into a stronger people. Using our differences as strength instead of a method to divide us. if we can move past the need to assign blame we can instead work to respect each other’s opinions and appreciate what we eat bring to the table two for joy nation into a place stronger, better and healthier than it has been in the past. It will not be an easy process and will require a lot of pounding out issues, smoothing disagreements and cooling tempers but if we truly wish it to be it can be done.
The 6 of Cups reminds us that we can shine brightly by growing up and accepting that the past is the past. We can’t allow nostalgic tunnel vision to blind us to the fact that things are different now and we need to adjust. The good old days were probably not as good as we remember and we can make a future that will be brighter as a result of facing that reality. We can also look at who we once were and try to become the person that our younger, more idealistic, self hoped and thought we would be. Or more simply put, be the person your dog thinks you are. Sometimes we let reality beat us down and loose sight of our better, higher selves. If this experience has taught us nothing else, it’s shown us how important it is to hold onto that side of our nature rather than wallowing in our most venal petty nature.
And finally we have The Magician Rx. I can’t think of a clearer way to show that the bright side we can find in this experience is to not submit ourselves to the will of others. Even if we agree with the beliefs and dictates of the people in power, that doesn’t mean we should unquestioningly follow their lead. The unfortunate truth is that people in positions of authority can quite easily abuse it. If we do not challenge them and hold them accountable, we might as well be cult members or living in a dictatorship. It has been said by wiser minds than mine that “Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty” and I think that’s the message The Magician Rx offers us. We can’t rest on our laurels and trust those in positions of authority to always have our best interests at heart. We can’t let them drive things forward without demanding accountability and explanations. We can’t be mindless sheep or we risk losing everything we claim to value.
One of the visual themes that struck me in all of these cards is the transferring of energy. Whether it is energy coming from the universe to us, from us to others, or from us to the universe, each card seems to show this exchange in one form or another. To me, this represents the beauty and simplicity of “as above so below” and “as below so above”. We reap what we sow. The wolf we feed is the one that grows larger. These are warnings we have heard at various points which I think are very appropriate right now. if we want to heal as a nation then that’s where we need to focus on energy not on continuing to demonise or villainize one side over the other. This doesn’t mean that people shouldn’t be called to account for the wrongs they have perpetrated simply that we need to focus as much or more energy on moving forward and healing. I guess at it’s core, that’s what The Star offers us – the chance to move beyond The Devil’s traps and temptations towards healing and light.
Okay, clearly my ancestors are trying to shake me from some bad habits which they also possessed.
Their message “Life is filled with give and take; with giving aid and receiving it. Being willing to accept help is not a sign of weakness. It shows you’re mature and self-aware enough to realize you can’t do it alone. It’s a sign that you are healing and able to be vulnerable enough to risk rejection. It also shows that you retain hope of gaining more autonomy and freedom. The truth is people are often willing to help if you’re able to ask. So stop being so stubborn!”
There’s a lot of battered and broken going on here; desolation and devastation, but at the core hope remains. I think my ancestors are reminding me that no matter how bad things get, how destructive they seem, hope remains.
Maybe there are important lessons that must be learned in the brokenness and devastation. What will be built after the rubble is cleared away will be better, stronger and healthier. There are always people willing to fight the good fight and I can choose to be a fighter or become part of the rubble.
My ancestors seem to be reminding me that in my core I’m an optimist. Despite how ugly and unpleasant things may get, I ultimately believe in the human spirit. I believe people are good. The trick is to remind them of that fact.
The Star is often interpreted as a card of hope, of darkness waning and returning light, of healing and positivity. When we consider how stars can light the darkest sky and bring a sense of wonder and curiosity, we can see those traits reflected in this card.
It’s interesting that three of the four cards I chose have an image of a female pouring fluid from a pitcher into a body of water. The fourth Star card offers a completely different image of a spider in a web dappled with stars. The images offer a sense of healing waters pouring into the pool; blessed fluid that can offer healing to all those who choose to drink. The spider in the web on the Transformational Tarot Star suggests that we should be tenacious and keep weaving our destiny even when things seem dark because hope is woven into the warp and weft of our lives. Even when it’s web has been destroyed, a spider will often rebuild it creating a beautiful work of art. There is strength and beauty in these images. They remind me of a mother sacrificing it all to continue nourishing and healing her children.
Despite the positive messages I can see in these Star cards, I can also see the negative. How long should someone pour their heart and soul into caring for others? How many times can we rebuild what has been destroyed by careless, thoughtless actions? When is enough enough? Of course, that is the beauty of Tarot cards, they can comfortable embody both these meanings as well as others and force us to face these issues head-on.
The rather bizarre image on the Deviant Moon Star card reminds me that even the most oddball, unfamiliar and even frightening creatures have the capacity to nurture and care for loved ones. It shows me that sometimes what is a monster to one person is another’s maternal figure. The spider on the Transformational Star card brings to mind Charlotte, the spider in Charlotte’s Web. She went out of her way to help and protect Wilbur the pig and in the end sacrifices her own life so that her children will thrive. She reminds us that this is the cycle of life and no matter how much we might wish it otherwise, everything needs to, and should, die. Perhaps the very transitory, fragile nature of a spider’s web and life is what makes them so beautiful.
The RWS and Golden Star cards show a nude woman pouring out healing waters. To me, they speak of needing to strip away all our illusions and delusions, rid ourselves of the trappings of “success”, the distractions with which we surround ourselves in order to avoid facing some truths. If we truly wish to heal, the Star shows us that we need to bare our souls and face the reality of who we are. It reminds me of Inanna’s journey into the underworld. She emerges stronger and with a deeper understanding of things but the process was humiliating and painful. The Star reminds me that this process will be beneficial and healing but no walk in the park.
Even though they use different imagery and I see different messages in them, these Star cards complement each other and add a layer to the overall meaning of this card. Just as nothing in life is all good or bad, all light or dark, no Tarot card is all positive or all negative. The Star offers a hopeful message of healing and light but getting to that place might lead us to the darkest recesses of our souls.
Wow, this is very interesting to me. I have been thinking about focusing some of my blog posts on the dark side of Tarot and the human psyche in general, hence the #TarotAfterDark. This reading certainly seems to support this idea.
The reversed 5 of Wands suggests that it’s time to put my creative struggles behind me. I’ve found my niche and now I need to begin exploring it further. All those ghostly self-doubts and inner critic can’t hold me back anymore. It’s time to move beyond those spectral annoyances and explore my new domain.
The Sun – how ironic! I’m in my natural element in the dark; it’s my native milieu. I am a Leo sun sign so this card is even more appropriate and impactful. I have always connected more with solar energies than lunar ones and yet I am also drawn to the darker side of human nature. I love exploring the darkness. I even pursued a masters degree in forensic psychology because I wanted to learn what contributes to some of the less pleasant, more horrific elements of human nature and behavior. Maybe this focus will be my platform to share some of my explorations with other interested parties.
The Queen of Pentacles nudges me to be careful about continuing to care for myself; nurturing my creative energies and manifesting them in ways that don’t exhaust me. I sometimes jump into the deep end and don’t consider long term ramifications or burning out. I think the Queen of Pentacles reminds me to go slowly; be practical about how often I can post and how often I want to post. I want this to be fun and enjoyable not become one more fucking thing I gotta do.
The Star reminds me that this is a way to re-energize my connection to Tarot; an opportunity to further explore the relationship between Tarot cards and the human psyche. The Star also gives me hope that this is doable and may even be another tool in my healing journey. Perhaps (if this isn’t too arrogant) this work will allow me to be a beacon in the dark for others who feel overwhelmed or lost.
Who knows, this may turn out to be totally inaccurate but it makes me feel hopeful and excited and maybe at the end of the day that’s more important.
You’re feeling hopeless, as though nothing makes sense anymore. You feel as though you have no support system that can help but is that reality or perception? As difficult as reaching out might be, there is always help available for those who ask.
Despite how dark things seem at the moment it helps to remember that people are always working to help each other; to change things for the better, even if it goes unseen right now.
Believe in the goodness of people. It can be so easy to loose faith in humanity but focusing on the small kindnesses people do every day can help. Remember the unsung heroes, helping because it’s the right thing to do not for recognition or glory. Remember that you can be that unsung hero to others; helping make their miracle happen when all hope seems lost.
No matter how heavy the burden you bear, how great the responsibility, keep hope alive in your heart.
The heavier your burdens get, the more important healing yourself becomes. Don’t let caring for your own physical, mental, emotional and spiritual needs fall by the wayside.
Believe in yourself even if you believe in nothing else. Even in the darkest times our beliefs are what sustain us. If you believe you can achieve your goals then you will, no matter how burdensome the challenge.