Friday, February 28, 2014

King of Cups – a pillar of strength

Restored Order Tarot
Today’s card is the King of Cups from the Restored Order Tarot . It is a Dutch deck with eighty cards and its original name is "Tarot in de Herstelde Orde". “Two extra cards, Intuition (Juno) and Truth (Jupiter), have been 'restored' to the deck, and some of the major Arcana is reordered. The imagery is based on that of the Rider-Waite, but has some changes in imagery and has been rendered in a more attractive and vibrant artistic style.” (AeclecticTarot)
It took some getting used to this deck but eventually I learned to appreciate the artwork. I  mostly like the pointillist backgrounds. Each suit has their own color scheme. In my opinion, some of the clothing could have used a bit more attention. But all together it is a nice deck and the hardcover book is good reference.
So back to the King of Cups. He is sitting on a concrete throne which is against all odds floating on the sea. Any way, his feet are kept dry unlike the Queen’s who has one feet in the water. For me this king is an empathizing friendly person who can detach himself from the drama he has to resolve. In that way he can give council and comfort but he isn't swept away by the tidal waves of the emotions all around him. He is a pillar of strength and always there for you but he can maintain his calm and protect his personal boundaries.
This is for me a welcome advice since M and I had to go to the dentist again. I am there for her but I have to be careful it will not be at my own expense. Perhaps, for my own good, this time it is better to be more like the king instead of the queen. 

Thursday, February 27, 2014

King of Stones - wolf: marking you territory

Wildwood Tarot
The last card of the Wildwood Tarot deck is the king of material world: The King of Stones (pentacles) - Wolf. This wolf is confident and he knows his strength and the responsibility which comes with his position. His strength and character have put him there. He advises us to mark our territory,  knowing and respecting and defending our boundaries and to protect our pack. He also knows it is important to stay strong for the same reasons:  He takes the first pick of the food. No putting yourself last for this guy.
There are also wolves who live  alone by choice or by necessity.
I am still the leader of my pack (protective) but I am also in my core a lone wolf.(independent, hermit) I need time for myself alone as hard as I need breathing.
Sometimes these two wolf aspects are hard to combine but most of the time if I let my lone wolf howl at the full moon once in a while it is working out just fine. I have to remember to set boundaries for my pack as well as for myself.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Ace of swords and three of cups. Will I finally get it?

For today I've drawn two cards from the Hanson Robert Tarot. Another of my decks which doesn't get as much attention as it deserves. 
Hanson Roberts Tarot
First I got the Ace of Swords. Always a good card to draw: New idea’s, looking a things from a new perspective, receiving clarity and inspiration and so forth.  But like all the aces it is remaining a bit vague. Ideas about what? Inspiration to do what? This sword even has a laurel, so it promises success too. I didn't want to let it rest and in search for more clarity (J) I decided to draw another card. To my surprise I drew the Three of Cups. When I read for myself this is the card that often represents me and my daughters. It encourages me to be open and loving towards them and to receive their love in turn. After yesterday’s conflict, this is for me a hopeful pair of cards. Will I finally get it now? Look at those three women talking and listening to each other. The feel  of this card is so peaceful. We are not the dancing types from the R.W. but this fits us beautifully. It is still early,but I am positive today will be another good day.

I have the card of Lakshmi on my altar now and I am going to chant to her too. So far it is a very beneficial practice for me. Meditating is more easy and I am less distracted by all kind of chit chat in my mind. For me it is a wonderful way to connect to Goddess. 

Monday, February 24, 2014

Lakshmi - Let it be

This morning I've drawn Lakshmi from the Goddess Guidance Oracle. She is the Hindu Goddess of wealth, prosperity (both material and spiritual), fortune, and the embodiment of beauty. She is said to bring good luck and is believed to protect her devotees from all kinds of misery and money-related sorrows.  
Since things are a little bit emotional and hectic around here, I figured I could use a little bit of guidance. I wasn't surprised to get this card since lately I feel very connected to Durga and Kali, who are both Hindu goddesses as well.  Yet today in my approach to my youngest I've reacted a bit to fierce, so the gentleness of Lakshmi was very welcome for both of us . Instead of focusing on what is not, and what I lack ,Lakshmi teaches me to be grateful for the abundance she is giving me and for everything I already have. The caption says: Stop worrying everything is going to be fine.  
Mostly I want to solve problems right away. I offer lot’s of solutions and expect others to accept at least one of them.  But sometimes it is what it is; especially when feelings are involved. It is hard for me to just let it be for a while. Although Lakshmi is often associated with overcoming money problems, today for me she is  all about trusting the Divine and stop solving problems and quit mothering. Just being there for her is often already enough.

My mantra for Lakshmi is: Om Shreem Maha lakshmiyai Namaha

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Dispersion – Dust in the wind

Tao Oracle
Another card which reminded me of a song of long ago. It is a card from The Tao Oracle form Ma Deva Padma. The card is called Dispersion. The keywords in the caption are: Diffuse negativity, restore harmony, circulate, revitalize, dissolve divisions, lighten up.
I couldn’t have drawn a better card for today. After a tedious tiring morning, I decided to go outside and ride my bike. The wind was blowing through my hair. It was sunny and it felt like spring. A lot of bulb flowers were blooming already. It was as if the windy warm weather was my dispersion and was making me feel so much more awake and alive. Every irritation and worry from this morning was blown away as dust in the wind and it was wonderful!
The song that came to mind was an old one: "Dust in the wind." This song has even a violin solo and so it is as if the man in the card is playing it. Any way I feel  a lot better and I hope you’ll like the song as much as I do.

Kansas - Dust In The Wind

I close my eyes
Only for a moment, then the moment’s gone
All my dreams
Pass before my eyes, a curiosity
Dust in the wind
All they are is dust in the wind

Same old song
Just a drop of water in an endless sea
All we do
Crumbles to the ground, though we refuse to see
Dust in the wind
All we are is dust in the wind

Now, don't hang on
Nothing lasts forever but the earth and sky
It slips away
And all your money won't another minute buy
Dust in the wind
All we are is dust in the wind
dust in the wind
All we are is dust in the wind

Dust in the wind
all we are is dust in the wind
(dust in the wind)

all we are is dust in the wind

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Three of Rods - Climb every mountain

My card for today is the Three of Rods (Wands) from the Anna K tarot. The man/boy in this card has reached the top of the mountain, bringing with him three wands. He has attained his goal only to discover there are more challenges within reach. It almost seems the first mountain was a test if he is able, strong enough, to go on. And he is!
So for me this card is about building confidence by pursuing long term goals, mountain by mountain and not  let myself be overwhelmed by the entire route
Sometimes this is the most loving thing to do for ourselves. No one would give a six year old fractions and times tables, but we know in a few years the child will be able to master them. So let’s take life challenges one step at the time too and celebrate each achievement for a moment in a four of wands state of mind, before climbing the next mountain

Friday, February 21, 2014

The Star - Never lose Hope

Mythic Tarot
A long time ago I have purchased the Mythic Tarot, second hand online. It is the old version which is now out of print. The main reason to buy it was because I thought I would like the theme and the artwork. But I didn't feel a click with this deck like I have with some of my other decks. So I have to admit it ended up in a back corner of my tarot drawer as a collector’s  item. Then I read Olivia’s post  about this deck, in which she can’t stop cheering it. So I got curious again.
For today my daily card it The Star. In my opinion you can’t go wrong with The Star card in any deck. This is a very different rendition of the Star compared with R.W. based decks. Yes the girl is naked but there stops the resemblance. This girl is called Pandora and she is the main character of the Greece Myth: “Pandora’s box” :
“ In classical Greek mythology, Pandora was the first woman on Earth. Zeus ordered Hephaestus, the god of craftsmanship, to create her, so he did—using water and earth. The gods endowed her with many gifts: Athena clothed her, Aphrodite gave her beauty, and Hermes gave her speech.
When Prometheus stole fire from heaven, Zeus took vengeance by presenting Pandora to Epimetheus, Prometheus' brother. With her, Pandora was given a beautiful jar – with instructions not to open it under any circumstance. Impelled by her curiosity (given to her by the gods), Pandora opened it, and all evil contained therein escaped and spread over the earth. She hastened to close the container, but the whole contents had escaped, except for one thing that lay at the bottom – the Spirit of Hope. Pandora, deeply saddened by what she had done, feared she would have to face Zeus' wrath, since she had failed her duty; however, Zeus did not punish Pandora, because he knew this would happen.”(Wikipedia)
This story teaches us whatever may happen, we’re never left without Hope. This can refer to major trauma’s, but also to the minor daily struggles which can be rather overwhelming too. Don’t you just adore it how she keeps looking at the star without being distracted by the swarm of illness and disaster. For me personally it reminds me of how I, at my wits end, had enough  hope and inspiration to go to my room and defy my Inner Critic. 
This card has persuaded me to find a more obtainable place for this deck in my drawer.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Six of Cups: Closing the Gap

Druidcraft Tarot
A while ago I received a comment from Prince Lenormand about my creative blocks, in which he had added a link to the Six of Cups from the Druidcraft tarot. That card really hit the mark because it felt if I was torn between parts of myself and not being able to connect them: The man is inside the house, looking outside longing for the time when he was young and everything was still simple.The children are playing outside and having fun together. The only thing I could do was to go upstairs to my room and pick up my paint, some scraps of paper and make a mark  I was inspired to try this by a post from Sharon form the Wishing tree
It felt so good and it was much more easy than I had expected. I used to do a lot of Art journaling and what I have made this time is quite similar: I've started with pasting pieces of paper on a white sheet, added some paint en crayon and  I printed out some sentences I had written and the children from the Six of Cups. It is funny but after I had finished the collage bit, I noticed the gap between the two parts. And there and then I decided to use that as the theme for this Art journal page.

Bridging the gap between me and myself
In the end
We're not that different at all
Meeting at the playground of my mind
Where the gap between fantasy and reality is closed.

This was a careful start. I am not there yet, but I know now I am still able to create something. This wasn't about the result but merely about me humming, singing and playing without fear. I would like to thank everybody for their kind and encouraging words. They have meant so much to me.
Hugs Ellen

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

A quick three card Lenormand spread before the day is done

Today I haven’t had the time to post my daily draw, but this evening I've drawn three cards from the Gilded Reverie Lenormand which I had to share with you.
I drew: child + Key + dog
1.       The solution to your problem lies in being loyal to your inner child
2.       New playful beginnings supported by friends
3.       Your friends offer you solutions how to play and be carefree
Gilded Reverie Lenormand

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Ace of Wands: Take a leap or wait some more

Druidcraft Tarot
This morning I've pulled the Ace of Wands from my Druidcraft Tarot. For me this is one of my most beautiful depictions of this Ace. From the heart of the burning fires of the Sun, the great spark of life on Earth, we receive a branch of a Birch tree. The birch is a symbol of new beginnings since it is the first tree who grows back after a forest fire. It is also the first tree in the Ogham, the Celtic tree alphabet.The Stag is associated with fire and passion which we all can imagine why… He is standing on the cliff waiting, weighing, will he jump or not?
The keywords for this Ace are: creativity, inspiration, desire, renewal, growth
The tension in this card and the one I am feeling lately, are much alike. A few days ago I've written about my creative blockage and the way I would try to work through that.
Now this card has come up and it feels like it is saying: Get up and do something, anything! I have been a bit in a creative slump and avoiding any “risky” situations. I’ve been playing it safe so to speak. (these are the reversed meanings of this card)  Before I will run upstairs like a mad woman and get my paint out again (failure assured) I want to figure out what I want, how do I want to express myself creatively at this moment. What feels good for me now. Is it time to jump or not? The sun will still be there tomorrow. For me today this card is a like a nudge, a little push of encouragement, to wake up my inspiration and my drive. This quote couldn’t have been more fitting:
I am the thinkling, the quiet whisper of inspiration. I am the novel idea at its moment of conception, the spark of something wonderful. I hold unlimited possibilities if you have the courage to run with me. New life blooms with a touch of my hand. Reach out and share my joy of creation.” (Leila Veh)

Monday, February 17, 2014

The Hanged Man: my dentist appointment

Universal WaiteTarot
For today’s card I have drawn The Hanged Man from the Universal Waite. I particularly like this depiction because the man looks quite relaxed in this awkward situation. He has a halo for enlightenment which is a symbol of The Hanged Man I don’t find in many of the other decks I have.
The Hanged Man is the archetype of the victim. There is a standstill and there is no room for change or action. Life is put on hold and mostly it is involuntary but sometimes we can welcome it. Who hasn't been in a difficult situation when suddenly you were “rescued” by the flu or a heavy snow fall
More often though we have to accept the situation and know we just have to wait it out. Rain, floods, boring family dinners, a broken leg; you name it.
But sometimes when you are in The Hanged Man position  you can be surprised by an unexpected insight or idea. Because the situation at hand is different than we are used to we tend to see things from a different perspective. Priorities can shift overnight, spiritual beliefs may change rapidly.

Today I have to go to the dentist and when the chair is reclined, I feel like the Hanged man with my mouth wide open at the dentists mercy.  I wonder if this visit will bring me some halo thoughts.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

The Queen of Stones is awake

Wildwood Tarot
Lately I am rather tired and  I am lacking the energy to do things. This card came up for me today : the Queen of stones from the Wildwood Tarot. Here she is depicted as a bear and today, her defending and guarding qualities are standing out to me. I like to imagine I am curled up, sleeping, like one of her cubs in the  back of her cave and she is guarding the entrance to hold off anyone who  wants something from me.

It is February; her winter sleep is over and I can imagine she is ever so hungry and because of it, cranky  and ill tempered. She has to go out eventually to get some food. She has to leave her cubs who were born during her winter sleep in order to keep alive and get strong again. Sometimes life is all about difficult choices. Especially when you are a caretaker. This queen wants to protect, to feed and to shelter her cubs but she also has to mind her own well-being in order to maintain her nurturing aspects. There  has to be a balance between caring and being cared for even if you have to do both by yourself.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Pathway spread about creative blocks

The day before yesterday I had very frustrating experience with  my painting. I knew I wanted to paint something, anything. I tried so hard but nothing worked and I felt like such a failure. I was so angry and disappointed with myself. Perhaps me beating myself up was even worse than making such an unsuccessful painting. After reading the post from Louise about her Pathway spread, I felt a lot better. The cards advised me to stay away from activities that cause frustration and to sit out my inner storm.

Since I have this deck myself I thought let’s do my own pathway spread. My question was: How can I work trough my creative blockages? 

The Wildwood Tarot
1 The issue : The Forest Lovers
This card was a nice surprise to get on Valentine’s Day but it also threw me of balance. What does the lovers card has to do with my question? But when I thought about some more, I knew it is a perfect card to draw since this card, beside addressing romantic love, also speaks about loving every part of yourself to become a whole person. After that union new things can be created, new sparks will ignite.
2 Action to avoid: Ten of Stones – Home
I’ve interpreted this card in this position as a warning not to hide in my house and behind the business of family life or perhaps worse: Pouting in my room
3 Action to take: Seven of stones – Healing
Instead I want to take the time to heal and to reunite with the parts of me that have been hiding in the shadows. It felt almost as if I was lying in a circle of calcified aspects of myself who are still able to protect me but who are also waiting to be acknowledged.

The first thing  I did was listing every aspect of me I could think of and that already had a surprising result. Besides: the good mother, the little girl and the perfectionist,  there were also the adventurer who was afraid of nothing at all and the one who says sorry all the time. The hardest thing is to keep writing and dig deeper. Forgotten parts don’t always have to be negative sides of yourself.

I know this process will take time but I think it will be very exciting and rewarding whatever the outcome will be.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

From Two of Swords to Queen of Cups

For today another card from the Anna K tarot, which I absolutely adore. It is the two of swords in a slightly different setting as the usual R.W. versions. Here we see a man who is ignoring his two swords and has his back turned to them. They are standing right outside the door on the beach. The sea is rough, the waves are high. The moon is waxing as are probable his emotions too. The sand is already inside; covering the neat tiled floor. He has to do something to move forward, but obviously he has not been able to do anything yet. This moment is giving him his much needed time-out. He cannot go anywhere and according to his facial expression he knows. It is what it is,for now.
It is very easy for me to relate to this man. I think I have an armory full of swords, waiting to discarded or to be chosen. But not yet, not now,  because I honestly don’t know what to do with them and which ones to pick.
I hardly ever go there and as long as I don’t open the door it seems as if it isn't there.
I didn't want it to leave it like this so I asked what would be a good way to approach my Two of Swords mentality and I got the Queen of Cups. Look at her sitting there, under a starry sky,  with her feet and one hand in the cool rippling water.  It is as if the raging sea from the Two of Swords immediately calmed down after she has touched it. The moon is mirroring the moon from the first card; it is waning. Emotions are settling down. Perhaps it is scary to  get in touch with your feelings, to make decisions, but in the end it is not so bad as it was to be expected.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Valentine’s day spread for Self Love

I have found a wonderful spread on Daily Tarot girl for self love to perform on, or just before Valentine’s day.  I have never been a  fan of Valentine’s day before. When my husband was still living with us it wasn’t that popular yet and nowadays you can imagine it is not something we pay any attention to. Until now! What a perfect day to celebrate Self Love. There will be definitely lots of chocolate involved and who knows what other goodies and treats I can come up with.
But first let’s have a look at this wonderful spread made by Kate. I have used the  Anna K Tarot. Not the most romantic deck I have, but it turned out to be a really good choice. It has become a beautiful layout especially with the yellow center card and all the blue cards around it. 
Anna K Tarot
1 Relationship to Self – What is your relationship with your Self like? 
The Six of Wands. I am glad to be able to agree fully with this card. When I consider where I’ve come from I really see myself as a winner. Doesn't mean I am there yet, but still.
2 Admirable Qualities – The parts of yourself that are easy to love  
The Hermit. I love to be on my own. I am a Hermit in heart and soul
3 Disowned Self – Your “shadow”aspects, the parts of yourself that need more love and acceptance from you 
The three of Pentacles. I see this as my creativity being locked in the basement. I have to accept that a difference between dream and reality is always going to be there and I shouldn't let it keep me from creating
4 Release – Judgements and expectations that you need to release in order to be more loving to you. Seven of Wands. I have to let go of the fighting against myself. Let go of my own stifling expectations and strive for perfection. It is smothering me, it is exhausting me and it is keeping me from doing anything at all.
5 More Love – Something loving and nurturing that you can do for yourself right now ! 
Page of Cups. Playtime! This page will help me to enjoy the creative activity itself instead of being focused on the result. With his mentality, I am sure I am going to have some fun on Valentine’s day.
I wish you all a very loving Valentine’s day

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Movement: one step at the time

Enchanted Map Oracle
Today’s cards is from the Enchanted Map Oracle and is called Movement. The caption says: “You are in a time of positive forward motion.”
This card can be about both physical and spiritual moving forward;  a trip or a quest.  It advises us to let go of the fear of the unknown, trust in the Universe and take the next step.  
Although the interpretation in the book is very encouraging to go for it and rush to your destination, the feel I get from this card very calm and easy.
The balloon is floating effortless in the air.  The Ostrich, while being capable of running, is strolling over the plain. On his back there is a small patch of land with an mill. Probable the blades are moving too..So everything is on the go but on a very casual way. Isn't that what moving forward in life should be all about. Often when change is happening too quickly it comes with a lot of stress and maybe even anxiety. When we look at nature everything changes all the time, but sometimes so slowly we hardly even notice it. I can imagine myself living in that windmill and seeing the world around me change moment by moment.
Every day when we wake up the world is different and so are we. We cannot  do anything else but change and move forward. 

Monday, February 10, 2014

Finding Durga through Tarot

Goddess Oracle
Yesterday I had drawn the seven of wands and I have asked myself a lot of questions about this card. One of the main subjects was how to defend my own physical and mental private space. I know I have always had an issue with setting my boundaries. Apparently I do respect other peoples boundaries more than my own. I noticed how tired the guy in the card was and how he was likely to give up, putting the needs of the others above his own. (Isn’t the tarot a wonderful mirror J)
Later that night when I had put these thoughts aside, I was surfing the web for another mantra. I have been singing the Tara mantra for some time now and I would like to try another one so I could experience the differences between them. It had to be a short one for I still find it difficult to remember the words. And I don’t want to bothered by that while I am chanting. So I found the Durga mantra: “Om Dum Durgayai Namaha” which means something like: “Om and Salutations to that feminine energy which protects from all manner of negative influences." It looked like a perfect mantra for me. Then I started searching to get to know more about the goddess Durga. The only thing I did know was that she is a fierce goddess.
While reading up on her I discovered (in short) she is a protective mother goddess and she helps us to stand up for ourselves. Googling  for some depictions of her I found this one from the Goddess oracle. The caption says: Durga – Boundaries. And that discovery closed the circle around me and made me feel safe.
I‘ve tried this chant the same night. I particularly liked the version of Thomas Barquee 
When I flipped through my tarot cards I saw that there are a few cards that represent the aspects of Durga for me. First of course the seven of wands but also the nine of wands, and not to forget Strength. It might be a fun challenge to use tarot to describe some more aspects of the goddess (just like naming them

Crystal Visions Tarot

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Does Tarot give answers or raise questions?

Universal Waite Tarot
Often we turn to our cards when we have problems, are curious about what might happen or for a simple focus for the day. It is not so strange to see Tarot as a deck of cards full of answers, potential opportunities and guidance.
When I drew the Seven of Wands from the Universal Tarot for today, my initial thought was to brace myself for an attack on my private thoughts or my opinions and to set aside a part of my energy for myself this afternoon. For me that is the general meaning and the first answer I get from this card. It is very obvious what the Seven of wands is about when you look at the picture. But when you are reading the cards like that, tarot can get boring so it is advisable to ask a lot of questions when you draw the cards.
Personally, I do this on a regular basis, but I became very aware of this method when I saw the video of Louise from Priestess Tarot. 
You can start easy, by asking yourself what you are seeing in the card and what details are standing out to you for today. Following, you can ask yourself questions about how the character in the card would  feel, why he does what he does and about more particular subjects to which the card is drawing your attention. It is also fun to notice how the questions vary when you compare several of the same cards from different decks. 
It might be a nice exercise is to draw one card or lay down a small spread and ask myself some questions about the card(s) . The challenge will be not to answer them right away but rather let them stew for the rest of the day. From time to time they will bubble up and perhaps raise more questions. In the evening I want to return to the card(s) and figure out what the message was.
A few questions for the seven of wands:
  • Who is attacking me? or am I attacking myself?
  • Why do I need to defend myself?
  • What/who am I afraid of?
  • What is my strength which I can rely on?
  • What conviction is worth defending
  • What/where is my refuge?
  • What do I want to be clear about?
  • and so forth

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Otter: Let’s play

Druid Animal Oracle
This very joyful card for the coming weekend is from the Druid Animal Oracle. Otter is all about playfulness and enjoying yourself, and when this is somewhat difficult, this card also represents help and protection.
“The card shows an otter looking for salmon. A member of the weasel family, and a relative of the beaver, the otter is equally at home in water or on land. It is able to stay underwater for up to four minutes, and for safety the entrance to its riverbank home lies below the water-line. The otter uses its tapered, powerful tail as a rudder and as a tool when building, while its webbed feet make it a strong swimmer. Living mainly on fish, it is noted for its playfulness and sense of fun.”
Otter invites us to play. To let go of all the drama and the seriousness of life for a while. It is not telling you to leave everything behind and give up, but just to take a step back and relax a bit. Leave the to-do list for what it is and do something just for the fun of it. It doesn't matter what, as long as you free your mind from the daily hustle
Sometimes I notice my tendency to organize even my “playtime” too much. Making goals for creativity can work rather stifling J. Perhaps I am suffering from the February blues, when we notice it is hard to stick to our, often too ambitious, New year’s intentions. So I will let Otter guide me to a more "go with the flow" attitude.
When I was a child, I could never have imagined that playing could be so difficult J
“Otter shows us that being playful can even lead us to catch the salmon - the fish prized by the Druids as the totem of wisdom.”

Friday, February 7, 2014

Excess: too much of everything will get you nothing in the end

Tao Oracle
After several days using the tarot for my daily draws, I have drawn the card for today from the Tao oracle by Ma Deva Padma (the artist of the Osho Zen Tarot)
Well this card is surely a wake-up call on various levels.
The man is crouched and almost crushed by the overload on his back. When you look closely everything is stacked neatly and there is even a tree growing on the top so I wonder how long he has been carrying this enormous burden.
When we keep going and keep adding to the load we all know we can go on like this for a long time until we reach our breaking point and believe me, we will reach it. The question is do we learn from it. Or do we recover and pick up the cause of our burn-out and carry on as if nothing has happened.
I have to be honest, it took me a couple of times to get it (one less urgent than the other, but still). I also can say, I've learned a lot and I hope I won’t get burned-out anymore. But of course there are still a lot of excesses in my life. One of them is my obsession with secondhand tarot decks.  I keep checking secondhand sites for new adds more and more. Since I was able to quit smoking last year I think I can manage to reduce this addiction to normal levels. This is just a minor excess and there are more of course, but the point is, they can grow slowly without noticing and suddenly you could be on the verge of breaking. Therefore it is so important to really take a close look at yourself from time to time and question your  motives, your desires and be honest about your limitations, your levels of stress and to sort out what you really want and need to be happy without having to feel guilty or ashamed because we’re only human.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Two of Wands: I've got the whole world in my hands

For today I've drawn the Two of Wands from the Robin Wood Tarot. Normally this card speaks to  us about being in control, successful and inspired to make a next move. It is also about patience and insight; knowing when to act and what to do next. He is pleased with what he has accomplished but he wants more. The roses and the lily’s on his robe tell us that his desires are pure. So all in all this is a positive card.
Yet this morning I saw this two of wands in a whole different light. There is this man behind thick stone walls; in his castle he has built himself, with all the goods he has gained from his successful enterprises. And there he  is, watching his globe and being stuck in his little world. This globe made me think of the World Wide Web. Almost everybody our there has access to the world in his own living room: TV, internet, smartphones and so on. Sometimes I wonder, if we would be more out there in the real world, without the digital one at our disposal at any time.
My own world has become (by circumstances) a small one and I am ever so glad with the opportunity to broaden my view on life  with the internet. It has given me so much more than I ever could have imagined ten years ago. But still there is something nagging. I know I have to accept the things I cannot change but I also want to be brave enough to look critical at what can be changed.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Ten of Pentacles: Let’s get physical

This is the third time in a short period I've drawn the Ten of Pentacles. I've written already about the importance of family and about what makes a house a home, so what’s next. Then I got it. The suit of Pentacles is all about physical things: health, money and possessions.
The Ten of Pentacles of today is from the Druidcraft Tarot. Although this family seems to live in a  simple dwelling they are well provided for which is most apparent by their clothing and the healthy dog.
When I was thinking about what to write about this time, my mind wandered to gratitude for my actual house and the things in it.
The daily comfort we experience is so often taken for granted: Warmth, shelter, running water, electricity, enough food in the fridge etc. Those are the comforts most of us have in common. So let’s get personal: my comfy old leather chair, my coffee machine, my decks, my bed with all my pillows, the soft towels in the bathroom,  candles all around the house, my fountain pen and let’s not forget my books. I know I can live without all of it  but today they make me feel safe and at home in my own house. That’s why I am also adding possessions to my daily gratitude list and I sincerely believe this practice is helping me to become more aware of the abundance in my life. 
What things are you grateful for?

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Blessed by The Hierophant

Morgan Greer Tarot
For today again a card which is not one of my favorites: The Hierophant from The Morgan Greer Tarot. The first thing that comes to mind is: “Boring!”. I must say I am happy to see the two acolytes aren't present in this depiction. They radiate both submissiveness and uncritical thinking to me. Now it looks like this priest is blessing me. And when I put my first reluctance aside, I wonder: Who doesn't want to be blessed.
This High Priest is the archetypal symbol of teaching and giving spiritual meaning to life. He helps us to find our purpose. As with other archetypes he can be found in our self as in other people or experiences. How often do we read a book and find inspiration/guidance or hear someone say just the thing we needed to hear. And sometimes we find meaning just by writing a blogpost about the Hierophant card.J 
We don’t have to invent our spiritual practice and beliefs all by ourselves. Most often we borrow from other spiritual systems and religions to blend it all together to our own liking. Who would have guessed a few months ago I would chant during my meditation. Not me.
There is a Buddhist saying: “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear”
I knew chanting existed, but I had decided it wasn't for me. After learning from Eowyn what Sanskrit really was I was willing to try it and I liked it
Perhaps this Hierophant card isn't as boring after all.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Three of swords: take care of your heart

Morgan Greer Tarot
This  daily draw from the Morgan Greer Tarot is at first glance not such a happy card to get, but it might be not so bad as it seems.
First of all the depiction is gorgeous. Just a simple heart with three swords pierced through it, but how vivid it gets because of the colors and the hatched shading.
Now let’s take a look at the meaning. Usually the Three of Swords is connected to heartbreak, grief and utter sadness and when you use the card for prediction that can be rather frightening. But what if we instead think of the lesson to be learned, the direction to be taken, when we draw this card?
For me the Three of Swords is all about a disconnection between heart and mind. It is not so much about how others hurt us to our core, but how we let them hurt us, because we are so vulnerable and insecure at heart level. And perhaps even worse; what do you think of our own swords we clash on a daily base into our hearts. Everybody has some negative self talk that can make our heart bleed. We are often too afraid of the  feelings our heart wants to express. Ever so quickly we stab it and try do act if nothing has happened; if nothing is wrong. So instead of pointing our finger at others perhaps it is time to get some emotional bandage and patch up our own hearts.
Isn't the beginning of spring not a lovely time to begin to allow ourselves to feel without being cut off by (ir)rational reasons? 

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Imbolc Tarot Spread: Brid’s Wheel

This spread for Imbolc, I have found in Christine Jette’s book “Tarot for all Seasons”. I've bought this book to accompany me on my journey around the wheel of the year with the Wildwood Tarot, I've started out last Yule
For this spread I've used my brand new Morgan Greer tarot.

Brid's Wheel from "Tarot of All Seasons" by Christine Jette with The Morgan Greer Tarot
1.    Strength.  This card shows where you are strong. 
*    The Queen of Rods: she is a strong, outgoing and creatively inspired. She is always warmed by her inner fire. She is confident and resilient. It pleases me to see her as my strength card
2.    Heart’s Desire.  You deepest desire.  What do you really want? 
*    King of Cups: How lovely it would be if I could master my emotional ups and downs and become more balanced. I want to be able to reach out to others and help them without getting emotionally drained
3.    Healer. What needs to be healed if you are to be strong?  Note whether or not there is a relationship between position one (strength) and this card. 
*    The Chariot: I have to acknowledge I am my own person, live my own life and I can set out my own direction and try to keep my insecurity and anxiety under control.
4.   Creative Inspiration.  When healing energy is released, creative inspiration is the result.  What are you inspired to do?  What creative activity fires you up?
*    Six of swords: That was a difficult card for me. But then I drew the sun as clarifier. I think I can interpret this as a creative spark in my communication abilities. The six of swords is about sorting out idea’s, looking for new ways of thinking and communicating; leaving behind idea’s which, although comfortable,  aren’t helpful anymore; or sometimes it could mean a spiritual journey or a quest.  In this sun card two people are coming together in the light of the sun which brightens and reveals everything. So I will use my creativity to communicate my thoughts clearly (writing?). Perhaps it is also a hint to put some effort in my Dutch blog.
5.   Making Plans.  Based on the creative information of position four, what plans can you now make? 
*    Nine of Pentacles. I always love this card.It is so easy to identify with this woman. It strikes me this nine of pentacles is very purple unlike many other cards in this deck. I can interpret this to use my inner wisdom in my spoken and written words. I’ve pulled the eight of swords as clarifier and it tells me to be aware of my limiting beliefs. So I see the Nine of Pentacles also as an advice to look after myself and be aware of maintaining my self-worth; Try to relax and be confident and believe in myself. This woman likes to be alone and that is okay too. In her so loved solitude she can find the peace and quiet to listen to her own thoughts and put them in writing
6.   New Growth.  What is the promise of spring that lies just beneath the snow? 
*    Nine of rods. Another nine. This card is all about vigilance. I am going to watch out for distracting influences (like procrastination!!!) which might make me forget my creative goal. (it happened before J) I will go on even when I get insecure. This card will be my defense against my inner critic.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

My Morgan Greer Tarot has arrived!

A week ago I've ordered this deck from Book Depository and I didn't expect it until next week, so I was pleasantly surprised to have found it in my mailbox  yesterday; like a Imbolc gift for myself.

Morgan Greer Tarot
 Now I have this deck I cannot imagine why I've never felt the urge before to buy it. The cardstock is smooth and of good quality  and it shuffles like a charm. But most important are of course the magnificent vibrant colors of the borderless cards. The color palette transports you immediately back to the seventies Perhaps it is funny to say but they make me feel young. Listening to music from those days can also provoke feelings like that.
The imagery is mostly Rider Waite based but it is like the camera has zoomed in, so you are very up close to the characters, which gives this deck an intimate feel. I expect it will read particularly good with larger spreads because you can easily get an overview of the situation thanks to the clarity of the images of this deck.
I am looking forward to read with it. Tonight I will “officially” use it for the first time for my Imbolc reading (Of course I've played with it and tried it out already. But then who wouldn't? J)