Claiming Control

IMG_7119Today’s meditation was ten minutes long and another guided meditation with interval timer.  The guided meditation today also included a chime which was intended to help keep the mind returning to the present and the breath.  This is because the topic of the guided meditation was just that.

That is to say, the topic was about sinking into the present and not allowing fixation with the past or the future to diminish your pleasure in the moment.  The thing is?  Most of humanity has a tendency to do just that.  To either get lost in thoughts of the past and memories, or distracted by plans for the future and daydreams.   These distractions take our mind away from the present, and make it difficult to fully enjoy all that the present has to offer.

Part of mindfulness meditation is the effort to train your mind to spend more time in the present, so that we can then carry that mindfulness of the present forward outside of meditation and into your day to day lives.

Tarot of Haunted House - Queen of WandsToday’s draw is the Queen of Wands, which is a receptive alpha energy, personality or person in the area of one’s drive, passionate interests, enthusiasms, and willpower.  This often translates into themes that have to do with determination, confident independence, and strong figures that encourage the drive and ambitions of others.

One of the lesser known interpretations of the Queen of Wands lies in the concept of dominant sensuality, as in the blend of dominance and sensuality.   And that is what I see in the imagery of this card today.  I see a confident woman filled with strength and aware of her power and allure.   I see control in her hold on the trident of flames, and sensuality in the piano behind her (that might be just me because of my synesthesia).

The message here is about owning your power.  It’s about knowing your strengths and playing to them instead of disregarding them as useless or yourself as unworthy.  The message in this card is about making sure I know to step into tomorrow with confidence and determination, and place myself through my behavior and my inner strength in a place of power and control… thus owning that control rather than allowing my aunt to have it.

DECK USED:  TAROT OF HAUNTED HOUSE

LionHart’s #TheOctoberTarot #SeasonOfTheWitchChallenge Prompt
Question
: Ask your cards for something you are destined to explore or face. Draw as many cards as you see fit. Set an affirmation and conclude your reading with “… and so it is.”

Murder of Crows TarotSomething I am Destined to Explore/Face

When I look in the mirror, what do I see?  Do I see the man that I am now? Or the child I used to be?  (Six of Cups)
When I step into my entrepreneurial spark and allow it to fill my focus and time, do I carry with me the strength of the man I am?  Or do I hear my father’s cruel bark? (Ace of Wands)
Instead of listening to that voice of old, it’s time to learn a different way. I need to find the optimism I’ve lost and a way to inject joy into my work… something I had always been discourage from doing in my youth. (The Sun)

Affirmation

By collaborating with others, they bring support into the equation, and allow room to foster joy.  Let them help.  Let them provide that spark of pleasure, and allow them to give me the space I need to breathe and lighten my heart that had once been caged.   So it will be…. and thus so it is.

DECK USED:  MURDER OF CROWS TAROT

#DiscordTarotholicsOct2020 Challenge Prompt
Topic
: Do Spread #1
Question: How can I give myself more space for my emotions, even during the busy time?

Curio TarotReading Summary: This is a learning process (The Hierophant).

The two left cards look into the past, but the wand in the center leans into the future. This speaks to me about how my lack of motivation (Four of Cups) and the desire to bump that motivation into high gear (Queen of Wands) both live in the past, but the practical advice on actually moving forward into my goals and allowing my emotions to have their own space does not lie back there, it lives in the future (tip of the wand in the Queen of Wands pointing to the right).

There is a hint of blue in the first two cards, one over the cup being ignored, and one upon the forehead of the Queen.  This blue feels like the scars my past treatment of myself have created both on my emotions (the cup) as well as my inner dialogue (Queen’s head).

The Hierophant looks into the future and leans in that direction… but his hand is palm up in the direction of the past, as if to indicate that the past needs to be held back or to be given a pause.

Take Away:  To give myself room to feel my emotions (even during the busy time) I need to leave my past in the past. This applies to my past habits, but also the treatment and events that taught me those habits in the first place.  It’s only by allowing the past to be in the past.  This isn’t about burying the past, but rather about accepting where it should live.

DECK USED:  CURIO TAROT

#MysticStarChallenge October Challenge Prompt
Question
: How will the lesson of staying focused on balance, instead of allowing old habits of overworking to have free reign, impact my life?

Hephoe Tapo

Reading Summary: It will allow me to have more focus on my work (Eight of Pentacles) without it damaging my intuitive abilities (High Priestess Rx)… which in turn will allow me to find a more stable center (Queen of Pentacles) and move forward towards my ambitions with clarity (Knight of Swords).

Take Away:  When I overwork myself, it has a habit of fizzling out a good portion of my intuitive side.   Things begin to feel unstable and I begin to feel lost and off center like I’m fumbling around drunk in the dark.

By staying focused on balance instead of allowing old work habits to rise up and take control, it gives me the opportunity to avoid being overwhelmed even while I continue with my work, allowing me to have that intuitive connection, stability, and direction that is lacking when I am flirting with burnout.

DECK USED:  HEPHOE TAPO

#ConnectWithYourDeckChallenge by E Roebuck-Jones
Question: How important is my spiritual altar to me?

Trionfi della Luna

Reading Summary: It’s more of a reminder of tradition (The Hierophant), than something that I use all the time (Three of Swords). But, it has its place in my journey and in keeping me grounded, as well as in making me feel that I have what I need (Nine of Coins).

Take Away:  I don’t use my altar all that often.  I mean… daily for my daily devotional, but I don’t really need an altar to do that devotional.  Aside from my devotional?  I don’t use it at all actually. My spellcraft is not done at my altar, my research and studies are not done there either, nor do my rituals take place there other than the already mentioned daily devotional.

Ultimately, it is a beautiful spot that is a soothing display of my faith and my values.  I enjoy it and the centered and grounded feeling that standing before it provides, and its beauty as well… but I wouldn’t call it necessary.

DECK USED:  TRIONFI DELLA LUNA

Frowns Can Be Infectious Too

IMG_7104Today’s meditation was ten minutes in length and was another of the guided meditations with interval timer for my piriformis stretching.  I can’t honestly say that I paid all that much attention to the guided part of the meditation today, and it might be time to switch back to non-guided meditations for a bit since I seem to have toned out the voice entirely through a good part of the meditation.

The part that I did hear was about not allowing reactivity and/or anxiety to spur you into making impulsive decisions and snap judgements. Instead, in those moments, it is a time to pause and take a moment to process.

Madam Lydia Wilhelmmina's Tarot - The SunToday’s draw is is the Sun card, which is traditionally a representation of optimism, joy, playfulness, and positive opportunities. It’s about all those upbeat things associated with fun, positivity, and success as well as youthful exuberance.

I don’t see much of anybody having all that much fun int his photo.  One kid’s looking back at the eldest with black eyes like there’s a serious problem, and the other is in the process of trying to squirm off their seat. It’s a family photoshoot gone wrong, and I feel like the contrast between the card’s imagery and its traditional meaning is where the message lies in today’s card.

The message here is to not let other’s attitudes or a crap-ass time drag you down into a place of pessimism and displeasure. Everyone has seen the truly optimistic as they move through the sludge of a bad day.  They remain optimistic even in the face of road blocks and naysayers.  Take a page from their book and keep your head up and a smile in your heart.

DECK USED:  MADAM LYDIA WILHELMINA’S TAROT

LionHart’s #TheOctoberTarot #SeasonOfTheWitchChallenge Prompt
Question
: A thought, dream, or hope I am asked to work on.

Tarot of Vampyres - The World and TemperanceReading Summary: The foundation of transformation and growth (The World) is patience and moderation (Temperance).

Take Away:  Transformation is the thought, the dream, and the hope in this reading.  I truly desire to change how I’ve been handling my work and responsibilities (vs.) my self care over the majority of my life. I’ve made a lot of big leaps this year in that direction. 

The thing is, though?  It is important to remember is that transformation doesn’t happen overnight. It’s something you work at a little at a time, adjusting again and again along the way.  And then one day you look back and realize you’ve made it to an entirely different place than the one you were in when you started.  

Even as I track my progress, I need to keep in mind that it’s okay to take my time.  It’s okay to backslide now and then, just as long as I catch myself and continue forward.  This effort is not a sprint but a journey and it’s going to take time and patience as I move along that path.

DECK USED:  TAROT OF VAMPYRES

#DiscordTarotholicsOct2020 Challenge Prompt
Question
: What needs… revealed / concealed / discarded

XIII TarotRevealedKnave of Cups – Sometimes when I express my emotions, I feel as if I’m speaking into a bucket. My own voice reverberates back at me, but that’s the only feedback I get.  I struggle with my emotions, even the good ones… even now.  I struggle with being in touch with them, with expressing them clearly, and with understanding them.  Sometimes I have no idea what the emotions I feel actually are or what the words are to express them. I know that this is a part of the learning process, but this is my confession.  My vulnerability on this path of emotional growth revealed.   I hate feeling lost and confused…. and sometimes on this journey, those feelings are the most overwhelming of them all.

ConcealedSeven of Wands atop Ace of Swords – I need to make sure that I’m fighting back against my negative inner dialogue as it tries to dig in and get a handhold.  Every time those fingers curl on the edge of that rocky shelf, I need to make sure I’m smashing them back.  This battle isn’t really something that needs sharing with others, as speaking what that negative inner voice is saying aloud will only give the words more power.  Instead, remember that it is important to pay attention and stay on the defensive with that pessimistic voice.  Be diligent and keep it in line.

DiscardedSix of Pentacles – You spend a massive amount of time throughout the year focused on others, giving your time to helping others and making time for others to come to you.  At this time when you’re moving into the holiday rush?  It’s just not the time for this sort of thing.  You need to be focused on yourself and your business and not worry so much about others.  You can go back to being your generous and giving self again after the holiday rush has come to an end.

DECK USED:  XIII TAROT

#MysticStarChallenge October Challenge Prompt
Question: What is the significance on my journey of the lesson revealed yesterday?

Twisted Tarot Tales - The Moon, Page of Swords

Reading Summary: Holy crap to the double moon cards. Your uncertainties and fears (double Moons indicating an overwhelming power in these concepts) can lead to misguided thoughts and bad ideas to get interjected in your learning process (Page of Swords… partially based off imagery).

Take Away:  Yesterday’s message was about staying focused upon and connected to my hope, to my spirituality, and to my progress through the transformation I’m working on, and not give up.

Fear, uncertainty, illusion, and confusion are all a part of changes and transformations. The thing is though?  If you give these concepts/feelings power they will take over and you will become lost in them.  The are them able to derail not just your trajectory on the path forward, but all of the progress you’ve made along the way.

By focusing on the optimistic side of things and staying connected to your hope, spirituality, and the progress you want to make, it helps in keeping those more negative emotions and fears reigned in so that they don’t cause you to fall off track.

DECK USED:  TWISTED TAROT TALES

#ConnectWithYourDeckChallenge by E Roebuck-Jones
Question: How can I use Tarot and crystals together more effectively?

Luis Royo's Labyrinth Tarot

Reading Summary:  When you are in conflict over which stones to use in your readings (Five of Wands), lean into learning to communicate more effectively (Jack of Spades) as opposed to allowing aesthetic to weigh in (Six of Wands).

Take Away:  I regularly use crystals and stones in my readings.  Sometimes my personal readings, but always my client readings.  Sometimes?  It’s true that I have a little bit of a debate going on as I pick the stones.  “This one is more apt… but this one will look better with the cards and could also work.”   The thing is?  I could improve my use of crystals (and plant matter as well) in my readings if I let go of the aesthetic aspect and simply went with what will work best for the purpose needed.

DECK USED:  LUIS ROYO’S LABYRINTH TAROT

You’ve Got This

IMG_7087Today’s meditation was ten minutes long, and was a guided meditation with interval timer for my piriformis stretches.  The topic of today’s guided meditation was suppressing and ignoring emotions.

This is a topic that I have a good deal of experience in.  Although I disagree with part of what was said (ie: that you cannot bury your emotions for long, just as one example), I do agree with the overall message that it is healthier to deal with your emotions than bury them.  I also agree that, while you probably can’t bury your emotions forever.  You can bury them for a hell of a long time. But I think that to do it for an entire lifetime might cause a great deal more harm than good.

The method of dealing with difficult and unpleasant emotions that is mentioned in this meditation, was to step aside and examine them as an observer, then return to deal with them.  Although I think that this might be a good method for a lot of people, I think that “stepping aside” like that for me?  Would be just too close to stepping away instead.  Too tempting to distance myself and then say “fuck it” and push them aside.

Tarot of Haunted House - Six of CupsToday’s draw is the Six of Cups, which is traditionally a representation of nostalgia and childhood memories. 

As is hinted at in the word “nostalgia” above, this card usually deals with positive memories that bring someone pleasure or joy to bring up to the surface. 

What stands out to me the strongest in the imagery of today’s card is a combination of the warm purity provided by the shades of white and gold, combined with the two figures in the center.   Today, when I look at this card, I see the woman handing a cup of flowers to the girl…. but I see them as the same person.   The young child and the woman different ages of the same woman as she looks back on a beautiful golden memory of her past, and the child reaches forward into the beautiful dreams of a future moment.

Together, these two figures bathed in the golden glow of hopes and memories, remind us that dreams can come true, even those idealistic ones we have as children and forget about as an adult. And when you accomplish a dream you hold close to your heart?  It’s time to pause and look back at where you started and feel a fissure of pleasure.

DECK USED:  TAROT OF HAUNTED HOUSE

LionHart’s #TheOctoberTarot #SeasonOfTheWitchChallenge Prompt
Question
: What magickal cycle is this New Moon in Libra kicking off?

Dark Mansion Tarot

Reading Summary: Balancing your new emotional growth (Ace of Cups), with the work ahead (Eight of Pentacles) is something that you have all the tools in your arsenal in order to do (The Magician).

Take Away:  Okay, so I’ve managed to accept that I don’t have to lock my emotional growth away to protect it during the holiday rush, but that hasn’t really meant that I’ve come to understand how I’m going to balance them.  The magical cycle this new moon in Libra is kicking off for me is about finding that balance and learning that I’m more than capable of doing this.

The cards are essentially saying, “You’ve got this.”

DECK USED:  DARK MANSION TAROT

#DiscordTarotholicsOct2020 Challenge Prompt
Question
: What do I need to focus on for self care this new moon?

Tarot ZReading Summary: Take that unfounded worry and despair that you’re feeling (Three of Swords), and surround it in your drive and ambition (Knight of Wands), eagerness and enthusiasm (The Fool).

Take Away:  This is a carry over from today’s Lionharts reading I did earlier, where I was worrying over how I’m going to balance my emotional journey and the holiday rush over the next ten weeks.  In that reading it told me that I have the tools and abilities at my disposal to balance these things. 

Here in this reading, we then see what these tools are and what to do with them.  The cards are indicating that the only thing holding me back are my own doubts, uncertainties, and thoughts of failure.   If I want this to work, I need to let go of these things and allow myself to get swept up in the enthusiasm.   Instead of wading into the surf one inch at a time… dive right in and adjust on the fly.

DECK USED:  TAROT Z

#MysticStarChallenge October Challenge Prompt
Question
: What lesson would my Spirit Guides like to bring to my attention at this time?

Halloween Spirit Tarot

Reading Summary:  The topic is about balancing work life and personal life/self care.  The figure in the imagery of the Two of pentacles points an arrow through the disk at the top of the Star and the World, indicating that these two cards are my target.   The other two cards are both “end of a journey cards” indicating a choice to move from an old way of doing things to something new.

The message here is that I need to remember that the shit I’m walking away from wasn’t that good (Eight of Swords atop The Star).   I have an opportunity now to move on from that more harmful way of doing things to something better (The World atop the Ten of Swords).

Take Away:  My spirit guides want to remind me of what my target is, and that I’m in the process of transitioning between the unhealthy way I was doing things and this new healthier balance.   These cards are a reminder to help me stay on track and not fall back into my old way of doing things.

DECK USED:  HALLOWEEN SPIRIT TAROT

#ConnectWithYourDeckChallenge by E Roebuck-Jones
Question: Do I have a spirit animal? If so, what qualities does it possess?

Halloween Magick Tarot - Nine of SwordsAnswer:  Don’t worry about it at this time. 

I didn’t draw the additional cards concerning what qualities the spirit animal might possess, because the Nine of Swords came up when I asked if I have a spirit animal.

The message is clearly that now’s not the time to be worrying about this, and to be honest?  I’m fine with that.

I have a lot on my plate at the moment and am just starting to occasionally feel the differences between my intuition and messages from my spirit guides.   There’s no need to over-complicate things by delving into the whole animals/humans/spirits/ghosts/ancestors side of things right now. 

DECK USED:  HALLOWEEN MAGIC TAROT

Letting Go of Apathy

Today’s meditation was…. yes, yes.  It was skipped again. I’m playing catch up from taking a few days off and… well, it’s an excuse to be honest.  I just didn’t do it.   Tonight perhaps, or tomorrow is a new day.  But I didn’t fit it into my morning.

Madam Lydia Wilhelmina's Tarot - Five of CoinsToday’s draw is the Five of Coins, which is traditionally a representation of tests, trials, struggles, and hardships in the area of one’s finances, resources, health, home, or manifestations.

I definitely see the struggle and hardship in this card.  What I do not see that is often present in the standard Five of Coins (RWS, of course) is the representation of salvation… of help that is either being missed or ignored.  There are just children in tattered clothes and no shoes, clearly needy and alone.

The message here is about paying attention. If these children were adults on today’s city streets?  We wouldn’t even see them.  Hell, most probably wouldn’t even see them if they were children.  We’ve become so jaded and, in some cases, frustrated by the trials and tribulations of others that so many these days don’t even -see-  the poor and the homeless, the distressed or those in need.  They just aren’t there… even when they are standing right in front of you begging for their lives.

The message here is about paying attention, and making sure that your eyes and heart are open.  You can’t save the world, but sometimes even just a smile or a dime is enough to make someone’s life worth living another day.  Apathy kills the heart, let your heart breathe and grow by kicking apathy to the curb.

DECK USED:  MADAM LYDIA WILHELMINA’S TAROT

#DiscordTarotholicsOct2020 Challenge Prompt
Question
: Write something free form inspired by the cards.

Ritual Abuse TarotNine of Pentacles – There was once a rich old man who lived in a house all alone. He was very rich, and very lonely. Each day he sat on his balcony at the end of another long day and watched the sun set.

One day, a bird landed on the railing of his balcony. He watched the bird, and the bird appeared to watch him.  They sat in silence together and watched the sun set that evening, and then the bird came back again the next day, and the next after that.

Over time, he began starting up a conversation with the bird.  He would tell the bird about his loneliness and discontent, and the bird would sit silently and listen.  They would then watch the sunset before the rustle of feathers would indicate the departure of the bird into the night.

One day, the bird came, but was acting strangely.  The bird would not settle and seemed to be having trouble with its balance.  The old man got up from his balcony chair to take a closer look, and discovered that the bird had somehow lost its eyes.  Where once there had been deep brown, watchful eyes, now there was nothing but empty sockets.

Seven of Cups – The man felt bad for the bird, and thought perhaps it would be best to put the bird out of its misery.  He carefully picked the bird up and brought it inside, intent on snapping its neck and burying it in the garden.   But, throughout the night, he found that he couldn’t do it.  He thought about keeping it as a pet, but this also felt wrong as the bird had always been wild.

Finally he was so mixed up in the choices before him that he couldn’t decide what to do.  In his distress, he asked the bird “What should I do??” and surprisingly, the bird answered him.

The bird told him that it wanted to make a trade.  That if the old man was wiling to give the bird one of his own eyes, then the bird would be able to see again and would be greatly rewarded for his sacrifice.  But, without eyes, the bird told him, that it would surely die either by flying into a tree or being prey to other forest creatures.

The man thought on this long and hard, considering what the bird had said, as well as what a good friend the bird had been to him for so long, coming each day to see the sunset.  If he gave up one of his eyes, he could still enjoy the sunset, and the bird would be able to as well.   It was a great sacrifice, but he didn’t want to go back to being so utterly alone.

In the end, he chose to sacrifice his eye to give the bird back its sight.  He remained still and silent as he allowed the bird to pluck out his eye and swallow it down.  His howls of pain were great, but when he settled and was able to take a breath once more, he opened his one good eye to find a beautiful woman before him. She had only one eye.. an eye the exact same shade as his own, and her smile was radiant.  Her raven like hair was beautiful,  like the wings of the bird that had been by his side each evening for so long, and  her touch as she tended to him gentle.

Nine of Cups – The beautiful woman patched him up and then helped to guide him out to the balcony once more, and together they sat to watch the sunset, the man’s heart finally at peace with his life and the company he keeps.

DECK USED:  RITUAL ABUSE TAROT

#MysticStarChallenge October Challenge Prompt
Question
: How should I embrace my missed message?

Nicoletta Ciccoli Tarot

Reading Summary: Don’t close your eyes (Far Left Card) and ignore what’s happening (Center Left Card)… Keep your eyes open and aware (Center Right Card). It might be a little scary sometimes, but you need to be aware of what’s going on (Far Right Card).

Take Away:  This is about embracing messages from my spirit guides and acknowledging where they’re coming from… not specifically about the missed message from the other day.  It’s funny, because just before I pulled these cards I was thinking that we were beating that poor missed message to death, and then what comes up is not about that missed message at all but about paying attention.

And it’s true.  Some of the whole spirit guides stuff is a bit scary sometimes. But as the cards say, that doesn’t mean close my eyes and pretend it’s not happening.  It’s time to be open and aware instead of playing pretend that they’re not there, as I have in the past.

DECK USED:  NICOLETTA CICCOLI TAROT

#ConnectWithYourDeckChallenge by E Roebuck-Jones
Question: What do I need when I meditate?

Ghosts & Spirits Tarot

Reading Summary: A quiet place (Imagery in the Ten of Pentacles), with my intuition and inner knowledge (The High Priestess). And for everybody to just take a hike (Imagery in the Three of Wands Rx ) leave me alone for a bit (Imagery in the The Chariot).

This reading leaned deeply into the imagery of the cards and had very little to do with the actual card names.  I didn’t even realize the card names (or that they might fit the reading) until after I’d already taken down my summary notes.

Take Away:  Essentially, I need to be left alone so that I can meditate in peace, and to combine that peace and quiet that that time alone provides me with getting in touch with my deeper self and subconscious.  If I can’t sink into that deeper self, I can’t meditate because every little single noise or sensation will distract me again and again.

DECK USED:  GHOSTS & SPIRITS TAROT