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Sunday, January 14, 2018

The Cardinal Spread - Imperial Dragon Oracle

Today’s spread is provided in the guidebook for the gorgeous Imperial Dragon Oracle deck by Andy Baggott & Peter Pracownik (U.S. Games Systems, Inc.)

The 22 cards in this oracle deck correspond to the 22 Major Arcana cards of the Tarot.

Here is the layout for The Cardinal Spread:

Card 1: Where the root of the issue lies

THE DESTROYER (16) – Mars / The Tower / Breakthrough

Fiery Mars energy is clearly represented on this card in the form of a fire-breathing dragon. The root of this issue lies at a major breakthrough or catastrophe, a period of great instability filled with unexpected events. The energy here is “the movement from material to spiritual.” This “tower moment” could be something from the past or something happening right now (even if I haven’t noticed it yet?). If it was in the past, repercussions are still being felt at some levels, like aftershocks from an earthquake.

Card 2: Your guide in this issue

THE WOUNDED DRAGON (12) – Neptune / The Hanged Man / Peace

Andy Baggott does not see this card as symbolizing suffering but rather a catalyst to release us from old patterns in order to raise spiritual awareness. That transitional energy is perfect as a guide during an upheaval such as the one represented by Card 1. It is interesting that this is card 12 in the deck, linked with the planet Neptune, which rules the 12th House – House of Sorrows and Self-Undoing -- in Astrology. Very nice tie-in. To get through a major breakthrough, it is often necessary to let go of a self-defeating mindset, perception, or way of looking at things.

Card 3: What you need to learn from this issue

LOVE (6) – Mercury, Gemini / The Lovers / Acceptance

I need to learn how to open my heart and connect with unconditional love. This could apply to relationships with other people or to my relationship with myself. Ultimately, if possible, I need to choose to accept myself and accept that everything in my past needed to happen, even if I do not know why. Events that seem negative may actually contribute to an overall positive outcome.

Card 4: Obstacles or challenges you need to be aware of

WISDOM (2) – Moon / The High Priestess / Wisdom

This card represents “obstacles or challenges,” which leads me to consider the opposite of wisdom: superficial thinking and short-sightedness. A tendency towards selfishness or the opposing extreme – ignoring self to please others – may block or delay what I hope to gain.

Card 5: The potential future if lessons are learned and obstacles are overcome

THE MAGUS (1) – Mercury / Creativity

Well, this is a very nice “potential future,” indeed. The tools at the disposal of this Magus are: “the sword of truth that connects you to your higher self” and “the cup of creativity.” The symbol of the pentacle on the chalice represents Earth. I don’t see an obvious “Fire” symbol here, but the dragon is certainly a fiery red and the dark sky behind him is full of flame-colored light. The point, as with most Magician cards, is that I by drawing down spiritual energy, have all the resources I need to create the reality I desire. This depends, of course, on my willingness and ability to learn the lessons and overcome the obstacles presented earlier in the reading.

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Animal Tarot Time: The Magician

For this series, I am exploring the choices of animals made by various deck creators to correspond to traditional Tarot cards. My initial goal is to get through the Major Arcana using cards from seven different decks:

  • Animal Tarot Cards by Doreen Virtue and Radleigh Valentine (Hay House)
  • The Animal Totem Tarot by Leeze Robertson; illustrated by Eugene Smith (Llewellyn Publications)
  • The Animal Wisdom Tarot by Dawn Brunke; illustrated by Ola Liola (CICO Books)
  • The Animal-Wise Tarot by Ted Andrews (Dragonhawk Publishing)
  • The Animals Divine Tarot by Lisa Hunt (Llewellyn Worldwide)
  • The Animism Tarot by Joanna Cheung (Self-Published)
  • Tarot of the Animal Lords with artwork by Angelo Giannini (Lo Scarabeo)

To read my post about The Fool, click HERE

Now let’s look at how The Magician is portrayed in these seven decks.

Animal Tarot Cards (Virtue, Valentine, Hay House)

UNICORN (“There is magic in the air! You can manifest everything you need to be successful.”) -- A great choice for this card, in my opinion. The unicorn is a magical creature, held sacred by people since ancient times. As The Magician, the unicorn encourages us to see ourselves as being above what is normal and “regular,” able to direct and channel the energies we need or desire to use to accomplish whatever we wish. The art does not incorporate the “Cup, Wand, Pentacle, and Sword” symbolism used in traditional versions of The Magician, but the unicorn does have that marvelous horn that can serve as a magic wand.

The Animal Totem Tarot (Robertson, Smith, Llewellyn)

FOX – Robertson draws a comparison here between the fox, who knows how to find food, even though it cannot be seen beneath the winter snow, and The Magician, who also knows “there is more available to them from the world they live in than what the physical eye can see.” The art depicts a fox mid-air above the four elemental symbols. This fox, Robertson tells us, has sensed a food source that can’t be seen and is leaping up to pounce on it. It seems like this is a bit like using “The Force” in Star Wars.

The Animal Wisdom Tarot (Brunke, Liola, CICO)

RAVEN (“Messenger of Magic”) – Brunke offers “Transformation, Creation, Illumination, Conscious Magic” as Keynotes for this card. The message she assigns to the card is “Feel, trust, and use the force within you.” (See my Star Wars comment above.) The art shows a raven with “one wing swept upward to Spirit, one lowered to Earth,” the traditional pose of The Magician. The four elements are represented by a Shell, Branch, Fossil, and Feather. Ravens are known as highly communicative birds, making them a great choice to act as a channel to divine wisdom (“As above, so below.”)

The Animal-Wise Tarot (Andrews, Dragonhawk)

FOX (“Blessings and Magic Afoot”) – We now come to Ted Andrews, whose Animal-Wise Tarot names the Fox as The Magician. Andrews views the fox as a creature “revered at some time by every society in which it was found.” In a slight twist to the idea of a fox being aware of things that can’t be seen, the Animal-Wise fox offers “quiet invisibility,” the art of camouflage, the better to see and hear things we might otherwise miss. Heightened senses (including psychic senses) are an important part of this Magician card as well. 

The Animals Divine Tarot (Hunt, Llewellyn)

CERRIDWEN (creativity, learning magic, directing energies) – Rather than a single animal, Lisa Hunt chooses the ancient fertility goddess Cerridwen. The art shows the goddess surrounded by a fox (cunning), a deer (rejuvenation), and a boar (fertility, strength, magic). The “animal” aspect comes into play further when we read the story of Cerridwen (in the shape of a greyhound, then an otter, then a hawk) chasing Gwion Bach (in the shape of a first a hare, then a fish, then a bird). The moral of the story is about the value and dangers of gaining knowledge and the significance of how that knowledge is used. Cerridwen holds a wand on this card, but we do not see the other elements or symbols that traditionally appear on The Magician.

The Animism Tarot (Cheung)

COYOTE (skill, cunning, power, instinct, transformation, action) – Although I would not recognize the creature on this card as a coyote, that is indeed what it is meant to be. The usual ‘trickster-Magician” analogy applies. Look closely and you will see the four elements represented by a huge pentacle beneath the coyote’s feet, fires flickering around him, water running alongside him, and a “powerful wind” that “flows and fills him with renewed energy.”

Tarot of the Animal Lords (Giannini, Lo Scarabeo)

FOX – Last but not least, Tarot of the Animal Lords gives us a Fox for our Magician. Characteristics listed in the guidebook: “shrewdness, will to succeed, lack of prejudice; errors, lies.” Giannini does not give us the traditional tools (elements) of The Magician. Instead, Mr. Fox performs a familiar magic act using two cups and a marble. A bird and a mouse observe.

The tally shows The Magician represented by:

  • Unicorn (1)
  • Fox (3)
  • Raven (1)
  • Cerridwen (1)
  • Coyote (1)

While I do lean towards the Fox as my favorite, I also like the Raven and Unicorn quite a lot. Which one works best for you?

Saturday, December 30, 2017

New Year's Spread

I really love the spread Helen Howell designed for a New Year’s reading, so I am going to use it with my newest deck, a Christmas gift: Spirit Within Tarot by Steven Bright (REDFeather).

I did make one change to the spread, using just one card in positions 3, 4, and 5 instead of three cards for each of those positions.

Designed by Helen Howell

Card 1: What appears to be the overall energy that surrounds you in the New Year?
Card 2: How can you make this year successful for you?
How can you make the best of your:
Cards 3: Health?
Cards 4: Career/work/job
Cards 5: Romantic Relationships? (or Relationships in general?)
Card 6: What one thing this year do you really need to change in your life?
Card 7: Based on the above cards, what is the overall outlook for the New Year?

* * * * *

Card 1: What appears to be the overall energy that surrounds you in the New Year?
NINE OF PENTACLES – “Personal achievement, satisfaction, independence, solitude”
I like this card very much as an indication of overall energy surrounding me in the New Year. I look forward to having a sense of security and awareness of my accomplishments to date.

Card 2: How can you make this year successful for you?
SEVEN OF PENTACLES – “Assessment, disappointment, evaluation, new options.”
It seems clear that I can make this year successful by continually assessing and evaluating what I am doing, facing and coping with disappointments when they arise, and actively considering new options. Even though the overall energy is that of satisfaction and achievement, I will still need to keep up with what is happening and how things are going.

How can you make the best of your:

Card 3: Health?
TEN OF WANDS – “Burdens, feeling overwhelmed or tired, duties.”
This rings so true for me, as I do find that I feel tired or fatigued on a regular basis. I know that I have always had a tendency to carry burdens that I don’t have to carry. I take my duties seriously, even when they are self-imposed (Virgo rising, Taurus Moon), and I need to be more careful about how I let this affect me.

Card 4: Career/work/job
SIX OF WANDS – “Success, recognition, awards, fame.”
Well, I have to like this, especially when combined with the Nine of Pentacles as overall energy for the year. I have more than one “career” and it will be fun to discover which one(s) will “take off” in 2018.

Card 5: Romantic Relationships? (or Relationships in general?)
FOUR OF WANDS – “Formal celebration, security, achievements, parties.”
Celebrating my relationships and the sense of security they bring sounds like a great idea to me. I don’t go to many (if any) parties, but just getting together now and then with friends or family can be a party of sorts.

Card 6: What one thing this year do you really need to change in your life?
FIVE OF WANDS – “Struggle, competition, different opinions, conflicting ideas.”
I think the message here is that I need to struggle less, compete less, and not take different opinions or conflicting ideas so much to heart. I need to ask myself, “Does this really matter?” when I feel that tendency to get upset or stressed out.

Card 7: Based on the above cards, what is the overall outlook for the New Year?
SEVEN OF WANDS – “Opposition, defense, courage, standing up for yourself.”
Well, in spite of all the success and accomplishment energy shown in previous cards, it does seem that I may come up against someone or something that requires me to defend myself and to stand my ground. I feel this “opposition” could come from outside or from within, as shown by the Five of Wands above. The Seven of Wands indicates that I am at an advantage, and I need to remember that. If I do have to fight, I am in a good position to do so successfully.

All Pentacles and Wands for 2018! I don’t see anything here that seems out of character or “outlandish” for me. It all makes a lot of sense.

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Court Case Follow-Up

This post is a follow-up to two readings I did on this blog, one on November 8 and one on December 2, concerning a court case. Here are links to those readings:

Court Case / Lawsuit Reading

Court Case - A Lenormand Perspective

Now I will give a brief summary of what happened concerning this case.

The hearing scheduled for December 19 was postponed while court representatives checked the decedent’s safe deposit box to determine if it contained a Will. It did not. The hearing was held as rescheduled on Friday, December 22. Petitioner #2 (the decedent’s son) was named Personal Representative for the Estate and the decedent’s children received the house and property on which it sits.

A couple of comments about the readings:

Indications were strong in the November reading that Petitioner #2 (KING OF SWORDS) and his lawyer (ACE OF WANDS) had a lot of power and positive energy together, whereas the lawyer (KNIGHT OF CHALICES) representing Petitioner #1 (the decedent’s estranged spouse) (FIVE OF SWORDS) did not.

The Five of Swords suggested that Petitioner #1 was battling or struggling. Her chances of winning were represented by the SEVEN OF WANDS (showing her in a defensive position), whereas the chances of winning for Petitioner #2 were represented by the SIX OF WANDS (the quintessential “Victory” card).

The Final Outcome in the reading was shown by the KNAVE OF WANDS, a card that is not only the same suit as Petitioner #2’s lawyer (ACE OF WANDS) but bears the same caduceus symbol on it as that other card.

I felt that the dominance of “active” (Fire, Air) energy in the reading suggested a quick decision from the judge, which also turned out to be accurate once the hearing was actually held.

The Lenormand reading carried a sense of delays or obstacles to a decision, and that turned out to be true, if only for a few days (Dec. 19 postponed to Dec. 22). The “loss of a job” could very well have referred to Petitioner #1, who had petitioned to be named but was NOT named personal representative.

I feel the cards in both readings gave credible insight into the energy surrounding this matter and the likelihood of a particular outcome.