How can I improve my relationship with money? 4 of Swords + Queen of Pentacles R (Hidden Realm)

Hidden Realm 4 of SwordsHidden Realm Queen of Pentacles

The 4 of Swords shows me in lovely detail that I need to stop overthinking these things.  It’s time to relax a little, rest my weary mind and just spend some times enjoying butterflies.  Reality is that no matter how much I worry or try to think of ways to improve this situation there is only so much I can do.  Worrying and becoming stressed over this situation is not going to improve it.  It’s okay to give myself periodic breaks from the worrying.

The Queen of Pentacles reversed puzzled me at first but while discussing it with a friend I realized she’s telling me that I need to re-define how I see prosperity and abundance.  I don’t need to use the typical, consumerist definition (“he who has the most toys wins”).  If I have learned anything from this experience it’s that I can be happy with much less money than I realized.  She embodies the concept of abundance and prosperity; of having enough resources to care for ourselves and others.  That may or may not mean having a wealth of financial resources.

Not having as much excess cash has forced me to become more selective about what I purchase.  I’m not as willing to engage in a bout of retail therapy so the things I acquire are things I really want or need.  I am reducing the amount of “toys” I already have as well as resisting the need to purchase new ones.  I finally realized that all I was doing was using “toys” to distract myself from things that left me unhappy and unfulfilled.  In truth I had been unhappy at my job for a few years before I was finally terminated.  The joy had gone out of it for me.  These two cards remind me that rather than just seeking a way to generate income I need to find something that fulfills me on other levels too.

I’m not going to be happy simply earning a paycheck.  I want to feel that I am contributed to the greater good in some way.  Of course it is also possible that I could find a way to earn money that won’t fulfill this desire but will give me enough free time to achieve that goal in other ways.  In the past I have been able to perform well at jobs that are not very challenging but don’t require much in the way of mental resources, energy or overtime.  Regardless of how this plays out, it’s time to embrace a new standard of abundance in my life and stop worrying about what was lost.

What is my current relationship to money? 6 of Pentacles R + Queen of Swords (Hidden Realm)

Hidden Realm 6 of PentaclesHidden Realms Queen of Swords

Looking at the 6 of Pentacles with its abundant and autumnal imagery, I was struck by the fact that one prevailing attitude when I was a child was that there was never enough.  Looking at the apple trees blessing us with an abundance of fruit, I realized we didn’t baskets let alone trees.  We were often forced to move from an apartment because we were unable to pay rent.  I remember the most humiliating experiences were when I was sent grocery shopping and didn’t have the cash to pay for everything at the register.  For an adult that may be embarrassing.  For a 10 year old child it was excruciatingly, piercingly painful.  I still remember the humiliation of having to select items to return while the other folks on line stared, grumbled and glared.  I always swore I would never find myself in that situation again.  And yet in many ways, here I am.

It’s not about being unwilling to share or being stingy, it’s about feeling that I just don’t have it.  I would love to be able to help out others but that’s just not possible right now.  I also find it difficult to ask for help from others.  Being on the receiving end of charity stirs up those old emotions and leaves me feeling like a beggar.

I think the Queen of Swords is who I became as a result of some of these childhood experiences.  She is the intellectual, rather unemotional shell with which I surrounded myself.  She may not be the true me at my deepest core but she is the persona I adopt to adapt to that situation.  What makes me laugh is that the smirk on her face tells me she knows this.  She knows me better than I do.  This is also the part of me that forces me to face the truth; who cuts away the bullshit.

The combination of these two cards tells me that my childhood poverty and my preferred method of dealing with the world (intellectualization, rationalization, etc.) have combined to convince me that I don’t care about money.  I don’t need money.  It’s know important to me.  In reality it is very important to me.  Not that I need a lot of money but I need to feel secure and grounded.  My childhood had some very gypsy-like moments as we were forced to move around because we couldn’t afford the rent in our apartment.  As a result I often felt as though I lived on a fault-line.  You never knew when things was going to be some upheaval.

I think the Queen of Swords is also letting me know that I need to get to the truth of how I want my relationship with money to be.  I need to be honest with myself and realistic about how much money I need, what I’m willing to do to earn money and how much influence I want it to have in my life.

What area of my life remains unexplored? – 8 of Cups R + Ace of Pentacles R (Hidden Realms)

Hidden Realms 8 of CupsHidden Realms Ace of Pentacles

That companion book for this deck describes the 8 of Cups being about trusting  your instincts and not letting logic brain distract you from continuing your journey.  For me I think this cards message is that I’m not there yet.  I’m still working on trusting my instincts and intuition.  I’ve gotten better over the last few years but I still have a ways to go.  A friend offered that perhaps there was some issue I still hadn’t been able to let go and leave behind and that is holding me back.  That certainly makes sense but right now I’m not seeing what that might be.

The Ace of Pentacles, my little hedgehog, has decided to show up again.  Once again he serves as a reminder that the quieter, less visible path to creating new wealth and manifesting a new life can be just as powerful as roaring in the sun.  He also points his little nose towards the figure in the 8 of Cups so he is suggesting that whatever that represents is the key to moving forward in a new career and finding new prosperity.

I was still unclear about the message of this card so I pull a clarifier and received The Magician.  He looks like a youthful, self-indulgently sexy Sirius Black.  He is a figure of promise and power, magic and manifestation.  He bares his chest to show that the way to my heart’s desire is control and will.  If I will it to be so and am willing to exert the self-control necessary to focus my energies and channel them, I can make things happen.

Hidden Realms Magician

This card initially just confused me more.  I wasn’t getting the message until I laid the cards side by side.  Then I realized the man on the reversed 8 of Cups is looking behind him, the hedgehog on the reversed Ace of Pentacles is looking towards the 8 of Cups and The Magician is looking directly at me.  If I read them together they tell me “stop looking behind you, let go of past success and wealth.  The future is in your heart and will”.  Okay, that might not be so earth-shattering but at least I’m starting to get it.  What remains unexplored is the past and how it might still be impacting me.

In many ways I’ve worked through some of it but I used to think that I’ll never fully forgive or forget.  However if I want to thrive and triumph I need to find the path to do both those things.  In order to put the hurt and pain behind me and free myself for potential prosperity, I need to accept and embrace those experiences.  They helped make me who I am today and even if they were unfair, biased and not based on any professional lack on my part.  None of that matters.  I had given so much of myself to that job that it tore my heart out when I was fired.  Intellectually I understand that it was driven by personality issues between “he who must be obeyed” and me.  In my heart I just feel hurt and betrayed, like a little kid left out of the game.  The only way I can truly lose in this situation is if I let it keep me down.  Screw that!  I won’t let anyone else do that to me and I won’t do it to myself either.

Letting my spirit soar above the stuff in life

Dance of Life Sage of Money & the Material WorldTarot of the Secret Forest 2 of Wands

I’ve decided to change things up a bit for my daily card readings.  In the past I had pulled the same card from two different decks and comparing them.  That’s grown a bit stale for me so instead I will now be doing a weekly spread pulling a card for each day of the week on Monday (but I will only turn one card over at a time).  Then I will use a second deck to pull a daily card that can serve as a modifier to the first.

So my card for today from the weekly spread is the Sage of Money & the Material World reversed.  In a traditional deck this would be the King of Pentacles.  This accurately reflects my financial situation at this time – I’m broke.  Things will turn around shortly but I’m waiting for some checks to clear and until they do I’m in very tight financial straits.  Not fun by any means (it is frustrating to have so little control over one’s financial situation even if it’s only for a day).  On the other hand at least I know it’s a temporary situation (well for now anyway).

The image for this card shows an older, bearded man wearing a turban.  He expression seems sharp but piercing, as though he can see through your personal bullshit and find the truths we often hide from ourselves.  I have a sense that he is telling me that I could have avoided this situation if I took a more practical, planned approach to my finances.  I sometimes go in mini-binges and spend money for things I don’t need but that behavior comes back to bite me on the ass later in the month.  I’m getting better about this but sometimes I still struggle with it.  His clear-eyed, somewhat stern gaze is calling me to task because I know better and I know I know better.

The Tarot of the Secret Forest 2 of Wands shows a white owl in flight near a dark tree.  The owl appears to be landing or has her claws extended to grasp something (perhaps prey?).  For some reason this image reminds me of the human soul and how it needs to soar free and seek inspiration and beauty in the world so it can thrive.  The owl seems almost ghostly, a messenger from the Otherworld seeking to remind me that my spirit doesn’t need possessions to soar.

The combined message I get from these two cards is that I need to stop focusing on “things” and buying stuff.  My spirit doesn’t need them to be happy.  Instead I need to focus on feeling my soul, allowing it to spread it wings and fly free.  I need to tap into my creative side and allow it to feed, to seek those dark somewhat scary places within myself and see what it can find.  It’s not true that whoever has the most toys wins.  Instead the truth is that whoever gets the most joy our of their lives wins.  In fact I think the most stuff we have, the more these things start to own us instead of the other way around.  It’s time to lighten up and let go of some stuff.  I’ve already started this process but perhaps it’s time to expand it into other areas as well.

Instead of clinging to old habits such as soothing myself with stuff, I need to tap into that joy and allow it to spread its glorious wings throughout my life.  It’s about loving what I do and who I am not doing things to make money so I can distract myself from my unhappiness by buying stuff (or eating stuff for that matter).

Becoming the master and commander of my financial and physical world

Witches' King of Pentacles Dance of Life Sage of Money & the Material World

 

Hmm, I’m taking this card as a good sign that this gent turned up. He gives me some hope that I’m moving in the right direction and that I’ve got some things under control. Right now things are getting quite scary on the fiscal front. We’ve been hanging in there but we’re starting to reach our limit. Things are still tight all over. When I hear reports about the economy improving I wonder where they’re looking. I still know quite a few people who are unemployed or under-employed. Folks are still scared and scrambling just to hold it together.

I have learned that I can survive on less money than I would have believed possible. I have also learned to enjoy what I already have rather than looking for new distractions. I want to be a successful Tarot reader and counselor. I want to be able to support myself doing something I love and that I feel allows me to make a difference. I want to offer help to people when I can. I also want to make a living.

Both these figures seem secure, comfortable and confident in their surroundings. They are not worried that they will be able to support themselves, they know they can and have achieved that goal. They can be mentors for me. In fact perhaps they are reinforcing some of the messages I’ve been getting this week to ask for help and guidance when necessary. I can’t do it all by myself. The only way to address that issue is to admit I need help and ask for it. There is no shame in that. It doesn’t make me a failure. In fact it will serve me better than wasting hours stumbling around in the dark on my own. That might be a bit challenging to put into action but now that I know I need to be aware of it, I can start taking steps to fix the issue.

As the saying goes no woman is an island. Being a “rugged individualist” will only take you so far. Eventually one needs to seek guidance from a map or a guide or someone who has already explored the terrain. It’s not shameful, simply sensible. I need to start being sensible and work on strategies and plans to help me reach this goal. Otherwise it will all be wasted effort and what’s the point in that.

COTD – 5 of Pentacles R (Fey & Gendron)

 

Looking at the images on both these cards, I do not get the traditional message of financial hardship or physical want.  In fact on the Fey 5 of Pentacles I get a sense of keeping the wolf at bay.  The figures are snuggled inside a shelter with a golden, glowing orb hovering overhead while a large, dark, shadowy figure hovers outside.  On the Gendron 5 of Pentacles a nude woman and a shadowy nude woman seem to be worshipping 5 pentacles embedded in the trunk of a tree.  The pentacles seem vague and shadowy too, as though they do not truly exists.  Are these cards suggesting that the security and solidness I believe exists around me is in reality an illusion?

If I wanted to get all physical with the issue (meaning quantum physics), I suppose that could be true.  I’ve read about theories that propose that nothing is actually solid; that we are all vibrating particles that intersect at various points but do not hold concrete existence (or at least that was my understanding).  It reminds me of the puzzler about a tree falling in the woods – if no one is there to hear it does it make a sound.  My brain says ‘of course it makes a sound” but if in reality someone needs to be there to perceive the sound in order for it to manifest itself, then I’m not so sure.

So on some level this card is about manifesting the illusion or perception into reality.  If the illusion is one of poverty and want, then that is what we manifest.  If, however, the illusion is one of warmth, comfort and solidity then that is what is manifested for us.  A friend and I have been talking about scarcity mentality lately.  We both experienced childhoods that involved lots of down time on the fiscal front – lots of scrimping and saving and very little left for anything beyond the barest of essentials.  What we both have experienced is how we still react the same way now, even when that type of scarcity is unlikely.  I’ve heard the expression “shaking your security tree”, well anything that even remotely smacks of poverty or fiscal hard times sends me into a hoarding tizzy.  I feel like  squirrel storing up nuts against the hard times ahead.  It also makes it very difficult for me to share with folks.  I can sometimes experience bouts of generosity and give things away but more often I cling to them like Daffy Duck in an old Bugs Bunny cartoon shouting “mine, mine, mine”.  I love the sense I feel when I have given something to someone they will truly enjoy.  It makes me feel warm and fuzzy whereas clinging to it (when I no longer want or need it) makes me feel like a bloated tick.

Thinking about this card today I realize that although I am experiencing some fiscal challenges right now, we are not at a poverty crisis mode.  I may not be able to splurge but I can still allow myself the occasional treat.  And we are both (hubby and I) working towards improving the situation somewhat.  So how I handle this is up to me.  I can either allow myself to feel the golden glow and security that is available or I can focus all my energies on that shadowy figure in the window and worry about him getting me.  It’s my mindset that needs to change in order to improve the situation.

COTD – Ace of Pentacles/Clouds (Fenestra & Dante)

Aces symbolize beginnings, the start of something new and the seed of new growth.  Pentacles are associated with the material world, acquisitions of wealth and possessions, our connection to Earth and Nature, sensation, matters pertaining to the physical plane and the element of earth.  Pentacles can also be connected with practicality, groundedness and being realistic.

“You are planting seeds for a new home, job, career, or form of security.  You may be getting a new sense of how to work with money , and finances.  You may be getting some urges to begin a new physical regime or a new direction in your health.” – Gail Fairfield

Dante LWB:  “The Celestial Pilot.  Change of environment.  Modernization of space and ideas.”

When I drew this card the first thing that popped into my head is “new income” and “manifesting new things in my life”.  In the words of the Laverne & Shirley theme song, I’d be “making my dreams comes true”.  The Ace of Pentacles is often about new opportunities to make money, improve one’s wealth and prosperity or to manifest new things in one’s life.  It may also symbolize a new time for practicality and being realistic.  Sometimes when we want to manifest our dreams into reality we don’t have a realistic viewpoint about what is achievable.  The reality is that there are some things in life that are beyond our control or our ability to make true.  And I an accept that, even while it frustrates me.

I  love the image on the Dante Ace of Clouds.  That figure standing on the prow of the boat seems to be actively seeking his future and is prepared to chart his course in the direction he wants it to go.  He is prepared and capable of creating his future; manifesting his desired reality.  The image reminds me a bit of the famous scene from Titanic with Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet standing on the prow (or is it bow) of the ship.  They give the viewer the sense that the future is theirs to create and a lifetime of potential and possibilities lie ahead.  The Ace of Pentacles is a symbol of hope, potential and limitless possibilities just waiting to be manifested in our lives.

Perhaps it is also a reminder that it might be a good idea to establish a new connection or renew my commitment to healing my physical self.  I have been working on developing a healthier, more sensible eating plan.  I was doing good for several weeks but I’ve been back-sliding a bit lately.  I think it’s time to refresh my brain cells on why this change is important and beneficial to me.  I realize that it’s like anything else – I need to occasionally sharpen the saw so that it’s fresh and easily accessible.

So this card offers a new opportunity to start anew; to refresh some things that I’ve lost contact with and to manifest these blessings and concepts in my life.  It’s about being sensible and grounded – not losing myself in a cloud of optimistic daydreams.  It’s good to be hopeful and have faith but it’s also important to maintain touch with reality.