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

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Blind Determination?

This week I'll be using the Via Tarot, created by Susan Jameson and John Bonner; the book and deck set were published by Urania/AGM. I'll also be using the Nature's Pharmacy Deck created by the New York Botanical Garden and published by Chronicle Books. Today's draws are the Chariot and "Elder:"
           Whoa... I've heard of the tongue-in-cheek phrase "herding cats," but three tigers? That's a lot of feline power to manage. Yet they are suitable representations of the forces that lead to success: determination (perseverance), diligence (effort), and discipline (self-control). Unlike Strength which uses the "soft" powers of patience, compassion and courage, the Chariot uses a "hard" form of control -  personal choice followed by deliberate action. This charioteer is blindfolded, but she has a sea eagle as her guide. She doesn't succumb to distracting details or emotional disturbances, because the eagle keeps its eye on the goal in the distance. Movement toward that vision is the only thing on the agenda.
          Sambucus nigra (Elder/Elderberry) is a shrub that produces flat sprays of ivory flowers and purplish-black fruits. Because of the dark color of its fruits, people associated it with witchcraft and magic in European folklore. However, the Romans used the fruits as hair dye. All parts of the plant are poisonous except for the ripe fruit and flowers; wines, cordials and marmalade have been produced from these parts. Preliminary studies show this shrub may be effective in treating the flu, allergies and other respiratory problems. Elder is a plant with beneficial and dangerous qualities. I get the feeling the charioteer above should take off her blindfold; she shouldn't overlook either aspect. Surely there is room for discernment.


  1. interesting. poison until not poison...

    1. I've run across several herbaceous plants like this - poison unless ripe, poison unless cooked. I recently discovered the berries on my Burford holly won't get eaten by birds or squirrels until we have a couple of below freezing days, which seems to make them palatable. There have been years (no hard freezes) when the shrubs stayed loaded with berries until they rotted off.

  2. This shrub is sacred to the goddess Holda also known as the Elder mother. The white flowers resemble the snowflakes falling out of her feather bed when she shakes it.
    I would love to be sure of where I am heading and pursuit my goal with determination. Somehow I am getting all sorts of hints (blogs, cards, a song, a quote) to find out what it is I really want without being afraid of not getting it. To dream big!
    I realize I have to be aware of the possibilities within my given situation but big dreams can also cause small changes.

    1. I love the visual of Holda shaking out her feather bed! :) Keep paying attention to those clues and acting on those spiritual nudges - I think you might be on your way!