Card of the Day – Green 1: Receiving (Bright Ideas Deck) Monday, Feb 1 2010 

aka: Ace of Coins.

The Bright Ideas Deck uses modern imagery and transforms the elemental suits into colors, the courts into actions, and the Majors have keyword style names.  In spite of all these changes – which make it possible to use the deck with people who might not be particularly Tarot-friendly – the images hold up as Tarot metaphors and even include astrological symbols tucked away somewhere in the picture.

Today’s draw is the Ace of Coins, er… 1 Green: Receiving.  It shows a woman in a red dress that was probably festive when it was new, but now looks a bit raggedy, with matching red pumps.  She’s seated on a large boulder in the dessert – we can see some cactii in the distance – and she’s opening a green giftwrapped box.  Next to her, separating her from the cactii, a fault line has broken open and a new plant is growing out of the parched ground.

What a perfect card to receive for Imbolc!  For me this image shows that times have been tough, but a new day is starting – new life is on its way.  In terms of weather, most of us have experienced cold and snow while life goes dormant, rather than the dessert depicted here…but the message is the same – things only look barren, but life is already struggling to the surface.  Hang in there when its hard, store up what you need like those cactuses, because more is coming.

I do like that it is portrayed as a gift – it isn’t saying struggle harder, or go find what you need… it is saying new beginnings are coming…are in fact HERE now, a freely offered gift we have only to notice and accept.

In a neat bit of serendipity, I literally got a gift this morning from my daughter, who budgeted out a bit of her own money to take me shopping today (I’ve put off buying new jeans for a long, long time), as a thank you for the support I’ve given her and her fiancee over the last year.  I wasn’t expecting it.. but I can’t stop smiling.

Card of the Day: Queen of Wands (Archeon Tarot) Wednesday, Jan 13 2010 

On a day that is beginning very low energy, I draw the Queen of Wands.  In the Archeon Tarot, her connection to energetic fire is clear – the card itself seems to be suffused with firelght, and the Queen carries a torch.  She’s got a determined look on her face as she walks forward – not frantic, but not still, either.

She strikes me as someone who knows how to use her energy – neither expending it wastefully, or letting it dissipate through idleness.  The torch she wields lights up the darkness so that she can see what is near at hand – she doesn’t need to see everything or rush around and try to do everything, either.

Instead, she focuses her attention and energy so as to manage those things that are within her sphere of influence.

That’s my plan for today… to hook into the energy I have, to focus on my most immediate concerns, and to calmly exert my influence where it can most efficiently be applied.

Card of the Day – VI: The Lovers (Aquarian Tarot) Tuesday, Jan 12 2010 

The Aquarian Tarot, with its iconic 1970s imagery, presents an odd version of The Lovers card – or at least it looks odd to me today.

The couple are both heavily dressed, no skin at all showing other than their faces – hair and fabric flow about them in a protective, armored way.

And yet, the image feels stifling, enclosed… either protective or suffocating (I’m not quite sure which).  The male figure occupies the center of the card, and the female seems to be pressed against the border, hemmed in by his presence.  It is both intimate and (again, at least to me, today) a bit intimidating.

Generally, the Lovers card has to do not only with relationships, but with choice – the choice to act as one within a relationship, or for one’s own purposes.  In this image, the choice on his part seems to be made, and I get the idea that he’s making her choice for her as well.

Odd vibe, maybe stemming from being in an odd mood, but I find this card much more intriguing and unsettling than most Lover’s cards do.

Card of the Day: XX – Judgement (Revelations Tarot) Wednesday, Jan 6 2010 

In the Revelations Tarot, each card has built in depictions for reversed cards, allowing for an interesting exploration of the range of meaning inherent in each one.

The image of Judgement shows a Christian-style Judgement Day scenario … an archangel blowing a trumpet, surrounded by choirs of heavenly host, as a naked human ascends through the clouds to meet them.

In the upright position, the human greets them, arms open, ready to embrace this new life after death.  In the reversed position, the human is covering his face to hide from the call, and the choir of angels have their own arms out, beseechingly.

I think the dual concepts here are rebirth and forgiveness vs. judgement with the expectation of punishment and what stands out for me is that the difference is not coming from the angelic beings, but from the human’s expectation and response.

And ultimately, that difference in how this is going to be experienced makes no difference at all… either way, the human self is passing through that reddish amniotic pool into the clouds of rebirth – go easy or go kicking and screaming, you’re still going.

This card makes me want to ask myself what do I need to forgive? What do I need forgiveness for?  What new start do I need to meet as a joyous opportunity rather than with a heart full of fear?  What does rebirth mean to me?  What aspect of the divine is speaking to me that I can’t hear due to my own assumptions and insecurities?

It’s a big card…big concepts here.

Card of the Day: 4 of Shivs (Knives) (Buckland Romani Tarot) Tuesday, Jan 5 2010 

4 of Shivs (Buckland Romani)This version of the 4 of Swords shows a man napping under a tree in the Winter.  All around the tree and man it is cold and snowy, but the ground beneath the man is green.  Three knives are stuck in the tree and a fourth is on the ground next to him.

The image looks very still and quiet – it is easy to picture not just the peaceful rest of the man, but also hibernating animals, the dormant sleep of the trees… the world is taking a pause beneath a blanket of snow.

Many of us around the country have been getting our fill of snow this year – my daughter in Nebraska reports on how high the drifts are that are enclosing their house and making keeping the driveway passable a work that takes a day to complete..repeatedly.  This morning, my daughter back home says that her fiance wasn’t able to get the car up the hill that is our driveway without sliding all over like a fish on the deck of a ship.

This snowy quiet works better when you don’t have anywhere you’re trying to be… the 4 of Swords is a card of mental rest, and that’s the ticket… to go accept the down time and not try to fight it.  This card is often about recuperation – the need to take a break to heal, and there again, it can be either peaceful or painful depending on how willing one is to chill out and rest.

Today I have little to do and plan to mentally hibernate and I will remember that this rest allows that hint of green to appear… that in silence and stillness there is the beginning of growth.

Card of the Day: 2 of Staffs (Alchemical Tarot) Monday, Jan 4 2010 

After I posted yesterday, we had a quick talk and spontaneously decided that I should go back with him for a week – I have business in his area every couple of months, and it seemed like a good idea to get it out of the way now.  My kids (the youngest is 16) were fine with it, so a quick hour of packing later, I was on the road.

So, suddenly I find myself, with the exception of one day’s worth of errands, having a nice, private vacation – yay!

So what a nice card to get today – the 2 of Staffs in the Alchemical Tarot is all about the igniting of passions… there is a hand coming out of a cloud with a lit torch that is either lighting or being lit by a flaming staff that is growing from the ground… earth and sky, flame to flame..  The airy staff is labeled with the symbol for Mercury/Hermes, while the growing staff is labeled as Venus/Aphrodite… male/female, communication and love.

It says all kinds of things about inspiration and passion..but today, it’s just talking dirty to me, and I like it. :)

Card of the Day: 6 of Water (Osho Zen) Sunday, Jan 3 2010 

6 0f Water (Osho Zen)In the Osho Zen deck, the Cups suit is “Water” and the 6 of Water shows a woman envisioning herself happily in the embrace of her Prince Charming.  The fantasy self is radiant, well dressed, the prince the stuff of romantic perfection.  The reality is an attractive, simple maiden wearing everyday clothes.

In the Rider-Waite style decks, this card is usually shown as a pair of children, one handing off a bouquet of flowers to the other, with the idea being simple pleasures, nostalgia, childhood…

Here, the highlight is more on the childlike looking ahead to a ‘happily ever after’ future with a mate.  The possibility of finding one’s Dream mate is real… as long as one doesn’t stand too hard on the notion of perfection – the mate we find will be as real and as flawed as we are.  Finding a person to share our lives with will not magically grant us a better wardrobe, make us beautiful, or make every day a graceful waltz.

Children don’t yet know this – and adults sometimes never learn it, and instead see every conflict or imperfect (or indeed every less-than-lovely mood) as a sign that the person they’re with is not ‘the One’ and keep dreaming and looking for that person who is going to make everything perfect for them.

This card highlights that the Dream is just that – a dream.  It doesn’t mean real relationships can’t lead to great happiness – they can and do, but that happens when we love and honor the real live flawed and perfectly human real people in those relationships and give each other a break.  Childlike dreams are a lot of fun, but you risk losing the fun of a real life if you try to live in them.

Drawing this card today, I confess I AM feeling a desire to fast forward to a happily-ever-after that’s long been in the making.  This card is a reflection of my sort of mopy, pretty dopy musings as the man I love prepares to head back home for a few weeks.  It’s also a reminder that when we do manage to get ourselves located under the same roof more permanently, the reality is going to be much, much better than our soft-focus fantasies can picture right now.

Card of the Day: XIII The Moon (Nigel Jackson Tarot) Saturday, Jan 2 2010 

The Moon can often cast an eerie, surreal light on the landscape of our imagination. The Moon shines no light of its own, but reflects the Sun’s light, creating shadows that can seem ominous and difficult to interpret.

In the Nigel Jackson Tarot, the Moon’s face is decidedly unpleasant and seems to be hostile or demented, looking down on the creatures below in gleeful anger.

Drawing this card today, I’m reminded of what is beginning to look like an ongoing battle between people I care about – I’m not directly involved, but I am being impacted by various family members unwillingness or inability to try to understand opposing perspections, or to see the actions and motivations of one another in anything but the worst possible light.

This is all happening based on an extremely minor event that happened nearly a month ago and has progressively blown up into a nightmarish flurry of accusations and counter accusations, and demands that everyone around them choose sides. A son has been verbally disowned for choosing the wrong side. A grandchild has not seen her grandparents due to their refusal to step back from their self righteous anger.

It’s sad, it’s scary, and the most disconcerting part of all is that after awhile, it stops mattering what the truth is, as everyone is creating the dark reality they’re afraid of.

That is sometimes the power of the Moon, which represents intuitive, illogical thought… it may be the stuff of fantasies, but it can manifest the shadows it casts.

I’d love to say this is a conflict that will pass, but I think it is just about at the point of no return and those involved are going to spend much more time regretting their choices than they will feeling it was worth the sacrifices they’re making now.

It can be hard to objectively look ahead in the dark night that is the Moon’s territory.

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