Friday, April 29, 2016

"Within, Without, Advice" tarot spread – An excessive amount of Wands

For today I’ve used the the Wild Unknown Tarot for a "Within, Without, Advice"  tarot spread. I was surprised that all the cards came from the suit of Wands. Maybe beneath my gloomy mood of the last week, there is a lot of fiery energy going on, which I wasn’t aware of until now.
So let’s dive in:
The Wild Unknown Tarot Two of Wands Nine of Wands Mother of Wands
Within – Two of Wands
This card is all about  potential. Everything is possible; so many options to choose from. Every color of the rainbow is used for this card. It is an exciting and promising energy; the moment before the choice. What am I going to do next?  What will make me happy and fulfilled? Honestly I am not quite sure yet and the fire which burns inside, urges me to chose. I know I need to and I want to chose but every color is as beautiful as the other. I have to watch out not to linger too long because otherwise the fire might die...
Without – Nine of Wands
In my daily life I have, like many of us a lot of responsibilities. They weigh me down sometimes but mostly  I just carry on and I climb my ladder one step at the time. I came from so far already. The moon is waning but I know I will reach it in time to be filled with her wisdom; my price for persevering.
Advice – Mother of Wands:
“Protect yourself my dear and everything you stand for. Warm en revitalize your passion and your desires and never stop believing in yourself.”

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

The Need for Retreat

Runes Nauthiz Soulcards 2
For today I’ve drawn the rune Nauthiz or Need and a clarifying card from Soul Cards 2.
Although it is officially Spring and the energy should feel  outward and exuberantly, it feels more like the beginning of a Dutch winter with rain, hail and snow. The heating works overtime and we are wearing cardigans and shawls to keep warm and feel comfortable.
The rune Nauthiz  is the rune of need and necessity and the desire to fulfill the lack we feel.  My Soul Card for today is telling me what it is that I need and believe me if I say it is not the first “retreat” card I got this week. This one in combination with Nauthiz gives me the feeling it is indeed necessary to take time for myself. Instead of filling this time with writing and reading, like I am used to, I could try to sit still and do nothing, not even meditate but just sit and be and let my mind wonder and make room for feelings too. 
Just like the woman who  is sheltered by the tree from the harsh winter wind. She is sitting there with her eyes closed not even noticing the curious deer/dog like animal. All the leaves have been blow away; every outdated thought  has been released to make room for new ones But not now, not yet. Now is the time to recuperate and replenish her soul. And all this while resting in the embrace of God(dess), the earth, the tree, the wind, her guardian and her (still hidden) heart’s desire.

Basho — 'Sitting quietly, doing nothing, Spring comes, and the grass grows, by itself"

Sunday, April 24, 2016

The Chariot - Keep moving

For today I got The Chariot from the Universal Waite Tarot. This card is so different from how I feel today but probable it is just the right energy I need to keep going. I suppose every one can identify with the feeling to want to go back to bed and skip a day or two. Well I felt like that this today but we also know we can’t stop living our life. Things always tend to happen when we are in need of some peace and quiet and solitude.
The Chariot is a card of success and self-reliance. The charioteer manages to balance the influence and strength of both Sphinxes . In my case: wanting to give up and wanting to go on. Neither is a 100% preferable but  a healthy mixture  of the two can be very beneficial for me today.  Oddly enough it seems The Chariot in this card isn’t going anywhere. So I presume he is contemplating where to go from here. It is good to make a stop in life when something is asking for a more in depth exploration. Life is not a race; there is no hurry. So I was wondering what it was, the charioteer was thinking about. And I pulled The Emperor. Immediately I was reminded of one of the pillars of therapy: the need for structure in our life. And I don’t mean structure like a tight schedule (pitfall!!) but a dynamic structure which a experienced leader like The Emperor would benefit from. A structure which can be maintained even when life needs you to be flexible. Again it is about finding the balance between black and white or between a  rigid structure and total chaos.
Today I didn’t feel like blogging but I am glad I did because writing this post has thought me a great deal and has made me feel a lot better.

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.” - Albert Einstein

Friday, April 22, 2016

Flooded with memories all over again

Gaia Oracle Remembrance
This week I am working with  a “card of the week”, namely the Five of Cups. I am not quite sure if this was such a  wise experiment. Although I do not believe this card was a foreboding  to a depressing week, I do think it is possible to be influenced by the energy of this card.
And so after working a few days with the Five of Cups I think I was rather susceptible for a not so pleasant mood swing caused by some family matters. I felt rather down and I didn’t feel like doing anything at all. I wasn’t planning to blog today either  but then I pulled “Remembrance” from The Gaia Oracle and when I read the guidebook, I knew this was the perfect card for me today and I felt called to write this post anyway. The keywords of this card are: Resurfacing of past feelings and emotions.
And a very fitting part from the guidebook is: “This card signifies that past feelings and emotions are resurfacing from deep within you and you may find yourself on an emotional roller coaster over the coming days. Do not fight it, this is all fine. It is important to occasionally remember and honor your past, for it is part of you and part of your soul’s journey.
Now this is exactly how I felt these past two days. Sometimes memories come flooding back and can overwhelm  you and although the first instinctual reaction might be to run away to safe and higher grounds,  there is actually nothing to be afraid of. They are just memories and yes they can cause grief and pain again and again but this experience also signifies that you are not done with them yet. Each time when you get washed over by these memories, it will be different and  perhaps a little bit less scary. And remember the waves always will bring you back to the seashore again, where you can bask in the sunlight to dry up and warm yourself….. and rest
 I bless my past and I am grateful for every experience,
for every experience has helped me expand my understanding of love.
My life is forever unfolding as it should; the past, the present and the future are one.
I honor and respect my feelings and emotional, for they are part of my story.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

King of Cups – Three roads to compassion and understanding

Today’s card is the King of Cups from the Morgan Greer Tarot. In combination with the Five of Cups, my Card of the Week, this King is all about compassion and understanding for people in desperate and challenging situations. 

Morgan Greer Tarot Five of Cups King of Cups

He is the master of the emotional realm. He has lived through the entire suit of Cups and knows perfectly well that emotional setbacks can be so detrimental  for  your well being. This is why he is determined to guide others who are going through similar things he has experienced. And he will do so in a very gentle and caring way.
For today this King can represent someone who is really there for you when you need him the most; someone who will listen without judging. Someone who will give advice when asked for and who is able to be still and just sit with you when needed
The king of Cups can also represent  a book,  a movie, a deck of cards, or even your dog. Any  trigger which will give you guidance and insight in what you’re going through and how to move forward on your healing journey.
Last but not least the King of Cups can represent yourself; the gentle kindness for yourself when nobody else can give you this; the inner voice that urges you to take a  walk or a nap, to  paint, to journal or to just sit and be with what is, without fighting or wanting it to be something else.
Naturally when we are feeling up to it, we can be the King of Cups for somebody else.  Often when you have been dealing with some heavy stuff it is easier to relate to others who are having a hard time too. This is when we've come full circle.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Theme for the week: Five of Cups

Original Rider Waite Five of Cups
Yesterday I’ve watched Steve’s video :“Weekly Tarot Thoughts” on YouTube and I was intrigued by the fact that he drew a card to establish the theme for the week.  I thought it would be a great idea to try this out for myself.  It could also be a wonderful way to explore one card more in depth and to perceive this card from different angles during the rest of the week. No card it ever  a 100% good or bad.
My theme for this week  is going to be the Five of Cups from the Original Rider Waite tarot. And no, I am not afraid this is going to be a said gloomy week.
The Five of Cups is all about coming to terms with our past and especially the more sad parts of it. For me personally this is a ongoing process. I am not going to digress about my losses, my grief, my pain because I am sure that anyone who reads my blog can relate to this card for everybody has some kind of “Grief list” of their own.
The five of Cups is for me a card who advises me to accept my losses and focus on what it still there for me to enjoy.  It requires a huge effort to turn your head and see the two cups behind you and truly appreciate their content. It is even a greater effort to pick up on of those cups and to sip from it.
But believe me it can be  done and sometimes you can be surprised by how wonderful it tastes
Original Rider Waite Nine of CupsMy daily draw will be the answer on how to approach this theme today and I got the Nine of Cups.
Wow, that’s a lot more cups than the two in the Five of Cups. They are all standing upright and ready to be tasted and/or emptied. For me the Nine of Cups is the wish card and the card of gratitude, so it urges me to focus on what I am grateful for and to try to find out what else would make me truly happy and then wish for it: Making the magic happen. All in all this card is confirmation how important it is to turn around and focus on the good stuff in the here and now with a soft focus on a brighter future (hoping your wish will come true). Since the man is all alone with his cups, this card also touches on the sometimes lonely aspect in regards to  dealing with loss. In my opinion it is often very difficult for others to really empathize what you've been going through and still are going through, so this card is about being kind en gentle to yourself and to really explore what makes you happy.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Three of Wands - Taking a Moment

Today’s card is the Three of Wands from the Original Rider Waite Tarot. It was a jumper card. I do not always give in to jumper cards because I prefer to pick my daily card myself. Maybe that is a control issue of mine? But for today I decided to go with what fate or the universe had thrown literally in my face.
Original Rider Waite Tarot Three of Wands Ace of Cups
A man is standing on the top of a mountain, watching the ships go by. He is holding one wand in his hand. The other two are standing behind him. He is at ease and content with how things are going. Maybe he reminiscing about how he has left his castle in the Two of Wands and how he has chosen the right idea to act upon. Everything is going smoothly and now he is taking a moment to reassess his options. Where does he want to go from here? What will be his next step? What does he need to let go off and what does he need to pursue further? So many questions to ponder about and I wonder in what direction he is going to move forward. What does he really want to accomplish?
And I pulled the Ace of Cups. This reminds me of how many of us a searching their whole life for the holy grail only to discover this grail was already given to use the day we were born. The Ace of Cups is Love in abundance and teaches us not only to be ruled by the head but also to really listen the whispers of our heart.

So the man is wondering what is that will make him truly happy. What is his heart’s desire? Is it the cargo of his ships or is it to drink from this overflowing cup. Or is it both: living our daily live with Love and kindness in our hearts. …. So many questions… No wonder he is taking a moment to consider what to do next.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Five of Wands – I went to the Gym!

Original Rider Waite Five of Wands King of Pentacles
Today’s daily draw really made me laugh: I got the Five of Wands and the King of Pentacles from the Original Rider Waite tarot. Reading Carla’s blog "Rowan tarot" reminded of my most favorite tarot deck. Some call it your soul deck. It’s  the one you can always rely one in whatever  circumstances you are. It will never let you down and in my case it often makes me laugh because it can be so literal.
Anyway the Five of Wands came first and you have to believe me that today was the day I was going to the gym for the first time in years. A little bit anxious but also excited. This card was obviously representing the gym and all the people there, trying to get fit and maybe also trying to be more fit than the others.
M had given me the advice to pick one type of fitness equipment so It would be easy for me to determine afterwards if training on the equipment would cause me pain in my neck or knee. I chose the crosstrainer and I loved it. Just for 15 minutes with a very low resistance but it was enough for me and I felt so good about it. It didn’t matter at all to me that the woman next to me was very athletic and far more skilled then I was. My main focus was that this is beneficial for my well being.
I also pulled a card to tell me how I felt about it all and I got the King of Pentacles. Yes, I feel like the master of my own physical health again; feeling my body move, perspire (a little) feeling my muscles hurt (a bit) and trusting that this body will recover and become stronger and more flexible over time.
All in all a very motivating experience.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Strength - We try to make the best of it, day by day.

Tarot of the Hidden Realm Julia Jeffrey StrengthTarot of the Hidden Realm Julia Jeffrey Seven of Swords

Today’s card is Strength;  a great card to get and to lift up my spirit. We all know we have this great fortitude within us. We are so much stronger than we give ourselves credit for, so it is always a good thing to be reminded of our own inner strength. I particularly like this depiction of Strength because the woman and her wolf have such a deep spiritual connection. Without words or touch they know they belong together and they are an intrinsic part of each other’s life. (Maybe some of you remember I did a painting of this picture about two years ago)
What is it that we need this Strength for, this drive to go on, even when everything else seem to be opposed  to our efforts.
And then I drew the Seven of Swords. This is the lonely warrior. The one who goes on because he knows he is fighting for the good of all. Seven stars in the night sky are symbolic for his beliefs and ideals. He is a peace keeper with a sword in his hand. Each time before he goes into battle he examines his heart: Is it still pure?

It is hard to stand up for your ideals and stay true to what your belief in, especially when those around you do not  share those. Each day we get up and try to life our life according to those ideas as best as we can and each night when we go to bed and revisit our day we know some things could/ should have been done differently. But we don’t give up or give in and when dawn breaks we get up and try again.

Friday, April 8, 2016

The Ace of Swords – Finding Truth

Tarot of the Hidden Realm Julia Jeffrey Ace of SwordsTarot of the Hidden Realm Julia Jeffrey Three of Wands
For today I’ve drawn the Ace of Swords from the Tarot of the Hidden Realm. Immediately some keywords come to mind: new perspective and ideas, mental clarity and truth.
Looking at this image I noticed that the Heron is looking to his left, which is often seen as the direction of the past, of everything what has been before.  Maybe we can find mental clarity and truth when we face our past and learn from all the experience we’ve had and the lessons we’ve learned.
By embracing and accepting our past new doors will open for us; new opportunities to find the truth or parts of it.
When we try to notice the smallest changes and movements around us and the whispers of our soul within us then we will be able to distinguish truth from illusion. Little by little we gather and learn...
So what will I find when I quiet down and listen.... The Three of Wands: whatever has happened or whatever will happen the love for my family is what drives me to be a better person then I was yesterday.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

New Moon in April

For this New Moon I've drawn two cards as usual. The first one for the energy I am going to release and the second one for the energy which is beneficial for me to embrace. From the Tarot of the Hidden Realm I got:
Tarot of the Hidden Realm Julia Jeffrey Seven of Pentacles 1

Release – The Seven of Pentacles
This card is all about patiently waiting. A woman is sitting on the ground facing the bleak April sunlight. She is clearly pregnant. She is holding her swollen belly with both hands, protective and nurturing. It won’t be long now. I can remember the times when my pregnancies were almost at their end. I was focused inward and content with just being; waiting, because there was nothing more for me do than to trust the process. Drawing this card, I wondered what it was I was waiting for now, because it is obvious this card in this position means my waiting time is over.
Embrace – The Fool
Wow, what an energetic card this is and so full of possibilities. I love how the colors of both cards seem to blend together and how it looks like both The Fool and the woman are looking at the same sun. This card marks a new beginning. A very suitable card for this Spring. Everything blossoms and comes to life. The waiting is over. It is time for a fresh start.

This afternoon I received an offer from our local fitness center  to have some free trial lessons. I am super exited.  This is totally new for me.  I also know I have to be honest to myself and feel  if it is truly something for me. I am definitely  going to give  this a serious chance because first and foremost  I want to become a lot fitter than I am now and I also want to lose some weight.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Six of Cups – I remember a time when…..

Tarot of the Hidden Realm Julia Jeffrey Six of CupsToday’s card is the Six of Cups from the Tarot of the Hidden Realm. We see a woman bathing in the bay. This is where she can connect to her memories in a very soothing way. She feels them floating through her mind, just like the little waves are caressing her body. Some of those memories are kind and precious, some of them feel uncomfortable and sad but she tries to accept each one of them with gentle compassion. Often when something distressful has happened, it is not so easy to take a light-hearted stroll down memory lane again.  Personally I still find it very hard to revisit photo albums from more than a decade ago….
This card reminded me of an exercise I’ve read somewhere online once: 
Shuffle your deck, pull a card and finish the following sentence:
I remember a time when…………
Whatever memory comes to mind when you look at your card, it's okay. It doesn’t matter if the meaning of the card has nothing to do with your memory.
Often memories are little snippets of a larger story. You can decide if you want to spent some more time there or if you want you can pull the next card. Don’t forget this exercise is supposed to be a pleasant experience. Try to embrace your memories with love and compassion. If a card disturbs you in any way feel free to pick another.
These four cards came up for me this morning:

Tarot of the Hidden Realm Julia Jeffrey Page of WandsTarot of the Hidden Realm Julia Jeffrey Ace of PentaclesTarot of the Hidden Realm Julia Jeffrey Seven of PentaclesTarot of the Hidden Realm Julia Jeffrey Justice.
Page of Wands: I remember a time when I got my first set of “real” watercolors and how amazed I was by the quality of its beautiful pigments.
Ace of Pentacles. I remember a time when I started my first job as a teacher and how thrilled I was that  I was the one who would teach these little persons how to read in less than a year
Seven of Pentacles: I remember two times when I shared my body with one of my girls. The waiting. The caring and attentive love of my husband. We became parents and I like to think we were good at it
Justice: I remember a time when I thought life wasn’t fair. Why did this have happen to us. But gradually over the years life taught me about balance and how time and new experiences fill the empty places

Maybe you would like to try this for yourself. You can journal about your memories or just sit with them for a while

"We don't remember days, we remember moments." Cesare Pavese

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Eight of Wands - Keep going, Keep growing

Joie De Vivre Tarot Paulina Cassidy  eight of wandsToday I pulled again the Eight of Wands  from the Joie de Vivre Tarot. Little did I know how it would reveal to me something very important which I wasn’t yet quite fully aware of. At first I felt annoyed; whatever could I write today about this card that I hadn’t wrote already  a few days ago.  Then I thought perhaps I could approach this card from the opposite side; the need to speed up and get things done. Not quite my cup of tea for a day off.  So I pulled another clarifying card and I got the Chariot. Together they felt very determined to get me moving, so I laced my shoes and went for a walk . 
Joie de Vivre Tarot The Chariot Paulina CassidyAfter a short time I reached the park and entered it. Following the path I enjoyed the peace and solitude of my surroundings. Not the silence though, because so many birds where performing their most beautiful songs. I was amazed by the  wonder of nature’s awakening on this spring morning. And then it I hit me. I was walking in a park on my own. Nobody else was there and I wasn’t afraid. I’ve walked  there  a few times more these last two weeks, but I didn’t fully realize this up until now. It was amazing. It is freeing not to need someone to protect me from everything that might happen in this park. After so many years this fearful story has faded away so much that is isn’t able to affect me any longer. This walk has given me back a part of my strength and independence for which I am so grateful. I felt victorious, just like the figure in the Chariot!

One of the pictures I took there today tells the same story: Even from very old wounds can grow new life.