It seems very appropriate that the last spread I will be doing in 2015 starts with Death.
Death is a signal for transformations. The old self, the old model, the old year is dead. It has ended and it’s time to replace it with something new.
Death is both a time of mourning and celebration: We mourn as we remember the memories of times gone past. We celebrate the coming year and the new experience they will bring to us.
Knight of Wands
Among the court cards, the Knights are symbols of action and activity. They are not merely messengers, they are agents of change.
The Knight of Wands represent the act of the spirit, of creativity: The Knight gallops forward to meet its challenges without hesitation.
We may fear changes. We may fear the unknown. But the Knight of Wands urges us to go beyond that fear, take a new step, and welcome the changes that came after the Death of the old year.
Two of Cups
Two of Cups, according to the Book of Thoth, represents Love. It is the meeting of two souls into understanding. It is the sharing of affections.
As the last card in this spread, Two of Cups is the attitude we should bring as we move forward with the Knight of Wands: An attitude of openess and welcome.
We may not know what the year will be like, but we can welcome it with kindness and warmth. More importantly, we should be kinder and warmer to ourselves this New Year.
In a time when things are changing, when rules are changing, and when we are starting over, we should allow more love and forgiveness for ourselves.
Halloween is over but it is still the Feast of All Souls. For this special occasion, I am presenting a pair of two-card spreads.
The first spread has Two of Wands and Six of Swords.
Two of Wands
This card indicate hopes and aspirations. We may be longing for things that are not yet within our reach. Or they may be things that are currently not possible for us.
Six of Swords
This is a card of journeys and transitions. The world is changing and we will not have a place to stay if we choose to stay where we are.
We may still be craving for old hopes and dreams which are already well past their time. It is time to find ourselves new goals and new destinations. There may be fear in taking that first step, but choosing inaction is no longer beneficial to us.
The second spread has Nine of Swords and Six of Coins.
Nine of Swords
This is a card showing our fears taunting us. And yet these fears might not be as potent as they seem.
Six of Coins
This represents nostalgia which may be an unhealthy attachment to our past. Letting go and moving on are needed to bring our lives forward.
Fear and anxiety are often made worse by our minds. Confronting our fears may show us how we allow ourselves to be under the control of something that has no real power. Our fears might be fueled by memory, which in turn drives our guilt. We must learn to make peace with our ghosts: the memories that are holding us back.
The images are from the Gothic Tarot of Vampires created by Riccardo Minetti and Emiliano Mammucari; and published by Lo Scarabeo.
For Halloween, I am presenting a pair of two-card spreads. The first spread displays Eight of Swords and Five of Coins.
Eight of Swords
Despite our efforts and even if we struggle, we are sometimes caught in a bind. There is no immediate way forward on our own.
Five of Coins
Help from the outside will present itself. Another person who might have an interest in our situation will present a solution.
Try as we might, we cannot always surmount challenges on our own. When we might need it the most, an offer for help might appear in front of us. But what are the intentions of these people offering help? How are we expected to return the favor?
The second of today’s spreads are Four of Cups and Three of Coins.
Four of Cups
Options and opportunities are given to us. However, none of these pique our interest.
Three of Coins
A thirst for approval from someone we admire, of recognition of our worth.
We might be receiving attention and praise from other people for what we do or accomplish. But this attention might not affect us because the opinion which matters to us will come from someone else. Our measure of how well we perform will come from a particular observer; what everyone else are saying do not matter.
Images are from the Gothic Tarot of Vampires created by Riccardo Minetti and Emiliano Mammucari; and published by Lo Scarabeo.
I had a tarot reading gig recently in Canyon Woods in Tagaytay. It was for an Oktoberfest celebration and the organizers chose a carnival-like theme for this year.
We came there early and was lounging around the club house while the other performers where doing their sound check. To pass the time, I did some tarot readings for some of the organizers.
One of them, Edith, saw me after we just had our lunch. I was walking around and decided to undo my bun, letting my hair down.
“But you had short hair earlier!” she said, mildly surprised.
It’s not an uncommon reaction. Tied neatly, I can keep my hair in a small man bun, typically tied behind my head. It also isn’t too obvious how curly my hair actually is.
Untied, my hair expands and occupies more volume, like a time-lapsed explosion. Even now, it looks like a Jewfro when I let it down.
When I was applying for a visa for India a few months back, the woman who handled my application asked me if I had a more recent photo; I told her the photo I submitted was taken just a week earlier.
My photo looked as if I had closely cropped hair because my bun isn’t visible. She saw I had one in real life because I tied the bun higher than usual on that day. So I untied my hair and made a bun lower, hidden behind my head, to prove that it was a recent photo.
I find it amusing how tying or untying my hair is enough to drastically alter my appearance. It makes me feel like I could turn myself into some kind of super-spy.
This week’s tarot spread shows Justice, the Wheel, and Strength. We will read this spread from left to right.
Justice implies structure: a set of laws to be followed, rules that guide our actions. With these guides, we will know our course of action. Our lives become balanced, stable, and reassuringly predictable.
The Wheel of Fortune
The Wheel brings chaos to this predictability. Try as we might, there will always be changes. The rules that we set up before might no longer work for us with these changes.
With the spin of the wheel, the balance we strive for is lost and we might have trouble with our footing.
In the face of uncertainty, our weapon is fortitude. This courage allows us to face changes bravely and adapt. We can take educated risks to find order again amidst the chaos. Strength allows us to tame even our fears and use them to master uncertainty.
This week’s spread teaches us to learn how to adapt to changes. Instead of unbending rules, let values and aspirations be our guide to our actions.
Images are from the Tarot of the Imagination (art by Ferenc Pinter, published by Lo Scarabeo).