I use tarot and oracle cards as tools for reflection and contemplation. Rather than divining the future, they are a way for me to look more deeply at the "now."
"The goal isn't to arrive, but to meander, to saunter, to make your life a holy wandering." ~ Rami Shapiro

Friday, October 31, 2014

Dropping the Rock

From the Shining Tribe Tarot, the Fool; from the Animal Tiles, the "Otter:"
       The Fool card makes an appearance today after a long, stressful week, and it makes me feel as if I've put down a heavy burden I've been carrying. Why is it this Fool seems to fly instead of fall off that cliff? She's carefree - not weighted down by the regrets and frustrations of the past or her fearful expectations of the future. She's so immersed in the present moment that she has no restraints, mentally or emotionally. This draw reminds me of a paperweight I once saw that was engraved with the words, "What would you do if you weren't afraid to fail?" I believe I could fly (at least metaphorically).
       As you might have noticed by my avatar, I tend to have a lot of beaver energy - planning, building and maintaining. All that industriousness is not necessarily a bad thing, but Otter comes this morning to suggest I balance my work with play. I was reminded by a woman after the meeting yesterday that a big part of care-taking involves self-care. Now this is a woman who laughs loudly and often; she's full of otter energy. The more reasons I can find to laugh or smile, the lighter my worries will be (even if they don't disappear).

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Sangha

From the Shining Tribe Tarot, Tradition (Hierophant); from the Animal Tiles, "Eagle:"
       The red stones (the tribe) have created a sacred space; the green pathways represent the physical realm, and the yellow the spiritual realm. Inside is a place where people can gain understanding, find sustenance and feel the safeness of a refuge. This place is much like the Buddhist sangha, a community of people who share the same spiritual goals and offer encouragement and support to each other. As I deal with a boatload of stress right now, I can see how such a supportive community could be of help. Yet I do have structure from the practices in my spiritual toolbox; these I need to rely on for now.
       The Eagle symbol often shows up in my life when I feel shredded on the inside due to situations beyond my control. It always brings me hope by helping me to look at my life from a wider perspective and see through different eyes besides my own. I am not the only one hurting right now, there are thousands of others sitting in my boat too. And while I can't change what is going on in the outside world, I can work on changing what is going on within me.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Burrowing Under

From the Shining Tribe Tarot, the Four of Stones (Pentacles); from the Animal Tiles, "Cicada:"
       A figure resembling a cross stands in front of two gateways: one a temple entrance and another a dolmen. Unlike the the closed, restricted feeling I get from the RWS version, this card seems more open. Yet that figure reminds me a sacrifice will be demanded of me before I enter. The busyness I use to distract myself, the spending I use as anesthesia, and the "comfort food" that takes rather than gives energy will have to be laid down at the threshold. My body, finances, time and energy have taken a hit lately, and I need time to heal.
       I love the big, frightful-looking bugs known as cicadas; it wouldn't seem like summer without their loud, buzzing songs. These insects spend most of their lives six feet underground, for a period of 3, 13 or 17 years. Under the earth, they live on the sap of tree roots. At the end of the cycle, they emerge, molt, then mate, leaving eggs behind to begin the next generation. Cicadas are symbols of rebirth after a period of rest. Like the spiral found inside the dolmen, these insects teach me that conservation is a natural part of the life cycle. For now I need to burrow down and take shelter.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Bunny Feet

From the Shining Tribe Tarot, the Gift of Trees (Queen of Wands); from the Animal Tiles, "Rabbit:"
       Pollack uses two snakes to illustrate the ida and pingala nadis, or energy pathways. While the third nadi (sushumna) runs up the spine and is connected with awakening, the ida and pingala are more directed at dealing with the day-to-day situations in our lives. The lunar ida is said to be nurturing and feminine; the solar pingala is described as stimulating and masculine. The Queen of Wands knows how to be supportive when needed, yet she can also challenge and inspire. Both sides are needed to reach the fruit on the tree.
       Rabbit (capable of producing forty offspring a year) is associated with creativity, a fitting partner with the Queen. But the rabbit is connected with lunar energy - prey not predator - and must constantly be on guard to prevent becoming lunch for a hawk, coyote or fox. I can sympathize with the hyper-alertness of the rabbit this morning. I've been tending to sick, struggling people and pets, none of whom seem to be improving. Unlike the Queen who will make sure she is taking care of herself while she encourages others, I have let those things slide which keep me sane while in a caretaker role. Yet I need to step into those big bunny feet when it comes to self-preservation, or I'm going to be the one who needs rescuing.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Rock-a-bye

From the Shining Tribe Tarot, the Five of Trees (Wands); from the Animal Tiles, the "Elephant:"
Rock-a-bye baby, on the treetop,
When the wind blows, the cradle will rock,
When the bough breaks, the cradle will fall,
And down will come baby, cradle and all. 
Pollack uses a lullaby to illustrate the Five of Wands. Though there have been many theories about this song (all unproven), I personally think it describes the physical birth of the baby. First the infant is "rocked" as it is carried inside the mother, then the bough (water) breaks and the baby is born. Just as the mother endures labor to produce the child, so too can the struggles of these Wands turn into something constructive or rewarding.
Elephants are a contradiction of sorts. With their great size and power, they can easily crush whatever they encounter. Yet to watch them tending to one of their young or a sick group member is to recognize their gentleness and patience. Their lesson is that strength can come in many guises. 

Sunday, October 26, 2014

He's Not All Bad

From the Shining Tribe Tarot, the Emperor; from the Animal Tiles, the "Spider:"
       I'm leaving shortly for a road trip (to visit my mom), so when I saw the Emperor I thought of how heavy my foot can get on the gas pedal when I'm rolling down the highway. If I don't want a speeding ticket, I need to be aware of how fast I'm going instead of getting caught up in the songs I'm singing along with. But then I noticed the bull on the card, and the phrase "bull in a china shop" popped into my head. The stag-like Emperor is blocking the way so this beast can't cause destruction in his city. I grew up during a time when people my age said things like, "Question authority!" Now that I'm older, I still think we need to keep an eye on those who govern us. Yet at the same time, I see the need for such a protective structure that keeps lawlessness and disorder at bay.
       Though their web designs vary, most spiders have a pattern of sorts when they spin their web. If they only spun one long strand from one tree to another, it is doubtful they would ever catch a meal. The sticky structures they create are formed with the intention of catching insects, so instinctive guidelines in weaving keeps them from starving. Spider reminds me that rules and regulations aren't just to keep me from doing things, they also help me do other things in a better way.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Enthusiasm with Experience

The week I'll be using the Shining Tribe Tarot, a deck and book set created by Rachel Pollack and published by Llewellyn. The oracle I'll be using is a wooden set of Animal Tiles, hand pyroetched by my multi-talented friend Carole. My draws this morning were the Place of Trees (Page of Wands) and the "Green Anole:"
 In the Shining Tribe, Pollack uses places to represent the Pages of each suit; this card reminds me of an Eden-like garden. Like the Page, I am most enthusiastic when I have a purpose. And when I am without one for any length of time then suddenly discover one, it does feel like finding an oasis in a desert. Such a purpose may involve learning about and enjoying the wonders of what is around me, working on a creative project, or being of service to others. It fuels my inner fire and makes me want to be alive.
The green anole is a small lizard found in temperate areas of the South. The male, with his extended, pink dewlap, is quite like the over-confident Page who exclaims, "Look at me! Look at what I know and can do!" The big difference is the Page doesn't have enough life experience to have produced a lot of common sense. The green anole on the other hand has developed coping mechanisms to survive. He can change from bright green to dark brown when he needs to blend in to his surroundings, and he has an autotomic tail that will break off and continue to move to distract predators. This lizard's arrival suggests I need to have a protective back-up plan before I dive into anything. Over-confidence and excitement can lead me into situations where I am taken advantage of or overspend when it comes to energy, time or money.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Wash It Off

From the Tarot of Durer, the King of Swords; from the Philosopher's Stone, "Self:"
As a child, did you ever find some treasure half-buried in the dirt while playing outside? If so, I bet the first thing you did was wipe or wash the dirt away so you could see clearly what you uncovered. That's what the King of Swords asks me to do in order to see a situation clearly. I must not rely on similar situations or be influenced by my emotional reactions. I need detachment in order to see with impartiality what is in the here and now.
Good grief, look at the size of that boulder in the Philosopher's Stone card. The Self image represents my personal identity or ego. All the experiences I've had and my perception of them create this ego. No matter what new thing happens, it wants to pull out picture books of the past and convince me that I should continue expecting more of the same. If I listen to my ego, I'll probably create a self-fulfilling prophecy instead of seeing the reality of the present moment. The King would tell me to shelve those books and take notes on what's happening now. Otherwise, I'll spend all my time wallowing in fear or resentment instead of enjoying what is right under my nose.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Emergency Preparedness

From the Tarot of Durer, the Two of Swords; from the Philosopher's Stone, "Insight:"
Talk about being caught between a rock and a hard place... This hen must decide whether to stay and protect her egg from the fox (and likely become its dinner) or fly away and save herself. Like her predicament, we may find ourselves in an emotionally charged situation with no easy answer. It would be nice to have time to mull things over, but the hungry look in that fox's eyes suggests she better not wait too long.
The Insight card reminds me of the eye pillows I made for my yoga buddies one year with flax seed and dried lavender. They were a physical aid to shut out the visual field and move our focus within. This kind of inner attention may result in what some folks call a spiritual nudge, intuition or "listening to their gut." Its purpose is to find guidance that is helpful (though perhaps not perfect) and prevent an emotional reaction (which is often detrimental). In the hen's situation, she's got a few seconds at the most to make a decision. In such cases, I find having a way to center myself quickly, such as with a breathing technique or a mantra, can be immensely helpful. But it generally only works well if I've been practicing it regularly.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Adding a Suit

From the Tarot of Durer, the Queen of Swords; from the Philosopher's Stone, "Complement:"
All of the queens have the ability to nurture and encourage according to their suit. The Queen of Cups lets me know when I'm not being kind (to myself or others). The Queen of Pentacles reminds me when I'm being impractical. The Queen of Wands will push me to be more assertive when I'm too passive. And the Queen of Swords points out when I've given false thoughts free rent in my head. When I am spiraling out of control, I imagine she would tell me to play detective and ask myself questions similar to these from J.C. Peters:
  • What thought is contributing to this feeling?
  • What evidence do I have that this thought is true?
  • What else could be going on?
  • What evidence do I have for those alternatives?
The pieces of boulder on the Philosopher's Stone card is similar to a jigsaw puzzle; they fit together nicely. In considering the four queens above, they also complement and balance each other out. It made me stop and think if the friends I have (people I look to for advice) could be sorted this way. If not, I might benefit by adding in the missing suit.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Keep Plodding Along

From the Tarot of Durer, the Chariot; from the Philosopher's Stone, "Depth:"
A man on his way to sell his goods at the market is slowed down by his wife's chatter. She's not worried about time constraints or what he might get in trade, she's focused on him attending to the gossip while he's in town. The Latin phrase associated with the Durer Chariot is "Those who are everywhere are nowhere." Unlike the rat on the tree limb who grabs her food and takes it immediately to her den, this man is distracted from his task. Likewise, my mind can easily be led astray. I can't count how many times I've sat down to "quickly" check my email, then found myself still in front of the glowing monitor an hour or two later. I need self-discipline to stay on course.
The Depth card shows the stone man with a large boulder and a much smaller rock in front of him. No matter what we are trying to accomplish, there will always be challenges to face along the way. But sometimes I get caught up in things that are in the past (and need to stay there) or situations that are none of my business. Before I get sidetracked from my task, I need to see the depth of what has caught my attention. How important is it, really? Of course some of these will be responsibilities I need to deal with, but if it's just a little mud puddle, I need to keep plodding along.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Coddling My Own Opinion

From the Tarot of Durer, the Emperor; from the Philosopher's Stone, "Solution:"
This is a rather jolly looking Emperor; the Latin phrase below his throne reads: "No person can lead well unless he has learned to obey." I would guess that this guy wasn't born with a silver spoon in his mouth. He has experienced the same sort of life of his subjects, and he knows intimately the kind of daily challenges they must face. The vulture (who dines on road kill) suggests the Emperor knows how to be content with what is available. Several years ago we had a fellow running for the office of U.S. President. His net worth was conservatively estimated to be at $250 million. He owned three homes, one a summer compound worth $8 million. Had this man ever faced real hunger? Did he ever have to choose which bill not to pay because he had an unexpected medical expense? Was he ever without a job and worried about his family being homeless? My guess would be that he had not; he had little in common with the people he wanted to preside over. No wonder he didn't get elected.
The Solution card shows a stone in the shape of a Century Gothic question mark from the front, yet its shadow casts the shape of an exclamation point. In chemistry, a solution is two or more substances evenly mixed together. It suggests brainstorming, where even the wildest ideas are considered in order to find one that helps fix the problem. These two cards suggest I need a wide perspective to find the answers I seek, which will involve listening with an open mind. Coddling my own opinion will only keep me staring at that stone wall.


Sunday, October 19, 2014

A Crack in the Facade

From the Tarot of Durer, the Seven of Wands; from the Philosopher's Stone, "Tension:"
The booklet that comes with the Durer explains this card as "the ability to act and avoid problems." Yet this guy is sitting on his bum and has hidden most of his body behind his shield. There doesn't seem to be anything that suggests being proactive, instead he appears to be hoping the lion on his shield will scare people away so he can continue to sit there. He's living in the illusion that if he pretends there's nothing to deal with, maybe it will just go away on its own. However, he's got himself sandwiched between a row of staffs and a shield which tells me on some level he knows otherwise.
The boulder and earth seem to be having such an effect on each other that a fissure has developed. When we experience a healthy dose of adrenaline, we get pumped up to take flight or fight. Either way, we are dealing with the situation that confronts us. But the Philosopher's Stone card shows what happens when the stress becomes so great that we freeze instead. We start coming apart physically, emotionally and mentally. My advice to the soldier would be to do something, anything, that is different from his habitual reaction. The result can't be much worse than what's about to happen now.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

The Pleasure of the Present Moment

This week I'll be using the Tarot of Durer, created by Manfredi Toraldo and Giacinto Gaudenzi and published by Lo Scarabeo. The oracle deck I'll also be using is the Philosopher's Stone, created by De Es and published by AG Muller. Today's draws are the Three of Chalices and "Stop:"
 In the Durer deck, each suit is associated with an animal: the dove with Cups, the fox with Swords, the lion with Wands and the eagle with Pentacles. This morning's card is quite different from the usual "three ladies dancing" version. Here the dove holds a cup, the tree winds a branch around a cup, and another sits at the man's feet. I am reminded that having a joyful experience doesn't always look like the usual party. Yesterday I had a long walk, paying attention to what was new or changing in the green world. Last night, I had a wonderful time at the meditation group. Today, my daughter and I plan to meet one of our book club buddies at the coffee shop. All three experiences embrace this Three of Cups card for me.
Generally I would read the Stop card from the Philosopher's Stone as a barrier or restraint of some kind. But adding in the Three of Cups puts a different spin on it. It suggests that when I am in a joy-filled moment to stop and truly appreciate it. I don't need to be planning what I'm going to be doing next or thinking about what happened yesterday. It is only important to experience the pleasure of the present moment.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Inspiration for Change

From the Pages of Shustah, the Ace of Batons; from the Pages of Shustah deck, the "Coins:"
The Ace of Batons/Wands show's Mercury's caduceus (not the medical Rod of Asclepius, which has one serpent). Mercury was a messenger and also a god of occupations and commerce. One myth about his staff is that he used it to separate two snakes in combat, and thus it came to be a sign of peace. The action of the Wands suit is, "I create, I do." I am hoping this card points to a peaceful solution for my daughter, who is struggling with choosing a career. Though she has the smarts to do whatever she chooses, she is crippled by ongoing anxiety and a lack of self-confidence. As a parent, I feel helpless (though I have made sure she is getting emotional and medical help). Inspiration and a dose of tenacious courage would be more than welcome right now for both of us.
The Coins suggest an investment that brings about a positive return. This investment does not only apply to the physical, but also the emotional. I have to believe that my love and support (along with that of others) will eventually turn the tide. After all, another term for coins is "change."

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Mona Lisa Smile

From the Sheridan-Douglas Tarot, Fortitude (Strength); from the Pages of Shustah deck, the "Angel of Summer:"
Something about this woman's actions felt very familiar. Then I remembered prying open my tomcat's mouth earlier this morning so I could give him his daily dose of antibiotic. The tarot does have a sense of humor. The booklet that comes with the Sheridan-Douglas describes this card as: "Instinctive drives directed toward positive ends." I rather like the idea of using the energy of frustration for a creative outlet or a beneficial purpose. The blue of her outfit represents the calm composure she feels when her energy is directed in this way; the white trim emphasizes her pure motives.
The Angel of Summer represents a time when there is a high level of activity - much like the summer harvest in farming communities. It can be exhausting and demanding to keep up with the amount of exertion required for success (which this angel assures me is coming). This is not the time to become bitter or throw up my hands and complain about how life isn't fair. Life is tough for everyone. Those who can keep a Mona Lisa smile on their face know how to sustain their stamina for a favorable result.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Creeping Toward Culmination

From the Sheridan-Douglas Tarot, the World; from the Pages of Shustah deck, "Pisces:"
I was mulling over a situation I have been dealing with for several years now (and feeling quite hopeless about it), when I drew the World card this morning. The young woman in the image dances through the wreath twirling two fiery batons. Though I might not do it naked, if this circumstance were to ever get resolved, I imagine I'd be dancing and twirling too. Yet this tarot card suggests that things will come full circle and find closure. As the phrase goes, "sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly."
The Shustah deck draw produced an astrological sign known for its sensitivity, imagination, intuition and compassion. Though I feel I may have some of these characteristics of Pisces, I am very different in that I love structure, itineraries and deadlines. The sign of Pisces on the other hand is very flexible and relaxed about such things - a very "go with the flow" attitude. To find my way through that opening, it may be that I need to burn my list of goals and expectations and develop an attitude of receptivity and openness.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Balanced Fun

From the Sheridan-Douglas Tarot, the Queen of Swords; from the Pages of Shustah deck, the "Little Fool:"
What's interesting about this Queen of Swords is the way she fades into the background. The ring on her finger and her sword seem to glow against the darker colors. The ring suggests a commitment made, possibly to a husband but more importantly to her kingdom. The sword implies her desire for truth and justice to prevail. This is no ego trip - she deeply believes honesty and fairness form the best foundation to build on.
The Little Fool is a child's toy, and thus represents the innocence of wonder and deep trust. He playfully warns the queen not to be a fun-suck. Yet she's lived long enough to know that while life is full of joyful pleasures, there are times when one needs to be cautious. That little clown only has stuffing in his head after all.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Break Time

From the Sheridan-Douglas Tarot, the Eight of Batons; from the Pages of Shustah, "Death:"
The Eight of Batons shows eight arrows on the downward side of their arc, soon to be hitting the ground. The abundance of green in this card might be worth considering. The first thing I think of with this color is the natural world, and along with that, the idea of growth and renewal. Here autumn has arrived, so the end of summer and abundant productivity is fast coming to a close. I also think of the heart chakra when I think of green. The downward slope of those arrows suggest that perhaps the outer focus of my love and compassion needs to take a more inward direction.
In the Shustah cards, Death refers to the end of an old cycle, which fits perfectly with the Eight of Batons. The scythe brings to mind harvesting the last of the crops and plowing the field under to allow it to rest before the next planting. Both cards imply a brief flurry of activity to tie up loose ends in order to take a much needed break.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Ongoing Opinions

From the Sheridan-Douglas Tarot, the Five of Swords; from the Pages of Shustah, the "Ouroboros:"
Watched by three pairs of sinister eyes, a man lays fallen and wounded on the ground. Five swords surround him, and he seems to have no choice but to surrender. Life will always be filled with arguments I don't win, decisions taken out of my hands and manipulative people who try to con me. There are times when not fighting back is the wiser move. Sure my pride will take a wallop, but the verbal or intellectual exchange can make me wiser.
The Ouroboros card suggests unity, wholeness and eternal cycles. I am reminded that I have been on the other side of that sword, trying to get someone to submit to my will. I have tried to force my perspective on other people and sway their opinion. I'm not the victim, I'm just part of the evolution of ongoing opinions.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Seeing and Hearing Clearly

This week I'll be using the Sheridan-Douglas Tarot, created by David Sheridan and Alfred Douglas and published by Sheridan Douglas Press. The oracle deck I'll be using is Pages of Shustah, created by Ann Manser and Cecil North and published by Shustah Inc. Today's draws are the Sun and the "Strange Page:"
 
Under the bright rays of the sun, twins dance in a protected garden area. The sun can represent a variety of things - clarity, warmth, energy, success, vitality - and is generally a positive card. But my morning did not start off that way. I made an emergency trip to the vet with my tomcat this morning, who was burning up with fever. The doctor gave him fluids and an antibiotic, but had no answers about what the problem might be. I'll meet him early tomorrow morning and then again on Monday for another round of fluids and antibiotics. The twins on the Sun card represent Gemini, a sign known for intellect and the ability to think clearly. I'm hoping I can stay out of the "what ifs" and just deal with the "now;" no need to cover that bright sky with clouds without solid evidence.
The Strange Page represents hearing a message or an inner nudge. But hearing is impossible if I've got too much internal chatter going on. To pay attention is going to require some stillness and quiet on my part.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Dead in the Water

From the Ship of Fools Tarot, the Eight of Swords; from the Wisdom of the Four Winds, the "Hawk:"
At first I thought I was looking at the Six of Swords this morning, but it is indeed the Eight. Look at the unhappy bunch of jesters in that boat. While they all hold swords (and one a pair of scissors), none of them are rowing or using the sail to move their boat. This vessel holds every negative, discouraging and critical thought I've ever had. As long as I hold on to those ideas, I'll never have any room for any solutions or alternatives. No wonder they're sitting dead in the water.
The hawk is a bird I'm very familiar with; they are frequent visitors in my yard and neighborhood. These birds like to be up high, whether circling in the air or watching from the branch of a tall tree. Though they can see the tiny details below, they're vision also encompasses a wide perspective. Brailsford says this bird teaches us about truth and insight. What I'm dealing with might be frustrating and feel overwhelming now, but this is just one moment in time. If I can lay down those beliefs that I'm clinging so tightly to, I might just figure out how to use an oar or unfurl the sail. Then I'll see the big picture instead of just my tiny corner of it.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Poker Night

From the Ship of Fools Tarot, the Nine of Coins; from the Wisdom of the Four Winds, "Wind:"
 Four jesters, both male and female, take a break from their duties to enjoy a card game. There aren't any huge stacks of coins on the table, so I'm assuming this is a friendly game rather than a serious one. Games have been recorded since 2600 BC and generally involve some sort of mental or physical stimulation. They may teach practical skills and strategies, but above all they are fun and help us to relax and unwind. The theme of fun and play seems to be running through my readings this week.
This image of Wind reminds me of the sand dunes here that the wind constantly sculpts. Brailsford describes it as a "Shifter and shaper, Timeless change maker." So what do change and play have to do with each other? I read an article about a politician (whose name escapes me) who believed the only way Congress would ever agree and move forward on anything was away from the White House. He often took members out on his boat for a relaxing ride or fishing excursion. His idea was that if they could connect in some way instead of keeping each other at arm's length because of their political labels, they might make some progress. Sounds good to me.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

The Page of ADHD

From the Ship of Fools Tarot, the Page of Staves/Wands; from the Wisdom of the Four Winds, the "Kea:"
The Page of Wands is definitely not a dull boy, but here in the States I bet he would be diagnosed with ADHD. He finds it hard to be still and quiet (he loves that horn), which is necessary if you are going hunting. His attention is all over the place - never focused - so he's oblivious that there are hares darting about right under his nose. No doubt he'll soon lose interest and be off on another adventure. Yet in spite of his inattention, nonstop motion and impulsiveness, this young man has good characteristics too: he's fearless, curious and full of fun.
The Kea, or Mountain Parrot, and the Page of Wands are two peas in a pod. This bird will follow hikers and campers, wait until they put down their packs or camping gear, and have a ball going through all their stuff. Of course the contents may not be usable when he gets through with his playful perusal, but that is unintentional. Brailsford describes the Kea as "the clowning one" and assigns him the key phrase "Innocence at Play." I am reminded of a time when I was in college and went with a couple of friends to a large grocery store late one night. We found a display of children's sunglasses, so we each grabbed as many as we could carry. We went to the produce section and put the glasses on Idaho potatoes, oranges, bunches of broccoli and whatever else we could find. After finishing our fruit and vegetable enhancements, we left, so consumed with the giggles we could barely walk a straight line. Such innocent play helps me bring forth the good characteristics of the Page and depressurize my stress too.


Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Who's in Charge Here?

From the Ship of Fools Tarot, the Cart (Chariot); from the Wisdom of the Four Winds, "Kauri:"
Why is it I get the feeling that the donkey pulling the cart is the only one who has a clue about where this group is supposed to be headed? What a perfect example of the committee that rides around in my head. There's Mr. Fear of the Future wondering if they should be ducking for cover instead of moving. Behind him is Mr. Regret of the Past bringing up all those mistakes and misfortunes of days gone by. The rest of the wagon is filled with the Sense Family. I can hear one of them shouting "Oooo, pretty flowers! Can we stop here?" Another one declares he smells fresh biscuits baking and demands that they stop for breakfast (again). Somewhere in that madcap congregation Mr. Present Moment is sitting; I think he's the only one that is going to keep that cart progressing in the right direction.
Brailsford describes Kauri as the "Mother of the Trees." She is said to bring the gift of balance and reminds us to "focus on the greater purpose." What a fitting companion card for the Chariot. Yet while Kauri has her roots sunk deep into the earth, her branches reach for the sky. Her leaves flutter and dance in the breeze, while her trunk offers support. I do need to stay grounded and balanced if I am to grow and move toward my goals. However, I need time to play too. I doubt I'll reach any objective if I can't have a little fun along the way.