#DatingTheTarot2020 a (non) VR to Candy Soul and Soil

So, this prompt was brought to my attention by Simon at The Hermit’s Cave, bit it originates from Candy Soul and Soil on YouTube. The concept here is what decks would fit these ten dating categories listed below. Although it was encouraged that you could use any kind of deck for this challenge (not just tarot decks), but I will be sticking to tarot specifically.

1: The Cheapskate Date… who did you date because they were cheap as chips and what was the outcome?

Student Tarot v2 Stained Glass

Student Tarot v.2 (Stained Glass) – Other than free decks and gifts, this is my cheapest deck. I paid $3.73 for it in a bargain bin at a little Asian market up in British Columbia, Canada. It was tucked away at the very back of a shelf cluttered with stationary and books. It is a beautiful deck and actually got me into collecting all of the different Student Tarot decks. Each one has a different style of art, and I currently have… seven versions. I’m not entirely sure how many versions there are total, because every time I think I know about them all I then end up finding another one.

2: The Slow Burner Date… the one you weren’t sure about on first meeting but over time you suspect it’s turning to love!

Ostara Tarot

Ostara Tarot – I bought this tarot because I was attracted to the artwork, but owned it for over a year before eventually using the deck for the first time. There was just something about this deck that I felt I needed to hold off on. Then, a year ago in November I finally pulled it out and used it for the full month and didn’t want to stop using it even at the end of the month. This is extremely rare for me as I usually want to rotate out to use different decks pretty regularly.

3: The Blind Date… because we are impulsive humans and sometimes we just rush in! Who did you date without looking or thinking?

Raja Tarot

The Raja Tarot – I saw exactly three cards in this deck when I bought it. All three cards were majors, and that was it. No one had pictures of this deck up to view. The creator didn’t either. I had an impulsive “fuck it” moment and bought it, and it was the worst purchase I’d ever made. Jesus… it’s bad. The cardstock is bad, the pips are bad… even the tuckbox is crap. So yeah. Bad. Bad bad date.

4: The Rebound Date… the one you keep going to break up with but keep being pulled back together!

Liz Dean's Golden Tarot

Liz Dean’s Golden Tarot – I have gotten rid of this deck and had it come back to me multiple times. I bought it from Amazon, gave it away, found it at a thrift store for $4 and bought it, edged it… gave it away. Found it at a GoodWill in Ontario Canada and bought it again. It just comes back again and again. This last visit from my rebound date, I’ve trimmed off the borders and titles to make it image only.

5: The Surprise Love Affair Date… the one you thought would be just ok but from first meeting it was love at first sight that took you by surprise!

Tarot of the Hidden Realm

Tarot of the Hidden Realm – When I ordered this deck, I really didn’t expect the reaction I had to it. I thought the artwork was lovely, and was interested because of it, but didn’t think it would be anything particularly overly special. Then I opened the box and touched the cards and it was so…. perfect. The art. The energy. The cardstock. The energy. I’d never felt anything like the energy I felt in these cards when I got them in my hands, and this is my very first “soul deck” connection. I’d been reading tarot for 15 years at that point, which just goes to show, sometimes surprises happen even to the well seasoned readers.

6: The “Not My Type” Date… the one you went on thinking it wasn’t really your cup of tea but what the hell… what happened?

Thoth Tarot Golden Edition

Aleister Crowley’s Golden Thoth – Right… so… I find Lady Freda Harris’ artwork to be extremely disturbing. It gives me really bad vibes and prolonged exposure (over a few minutes) can give me nausea and cold sweats. I bought this deck with every intention of studying the Thoth and exploring the system at length along with its original artwork. But I was never able to get over extremely visceral reaction to the artwork. I still own it, but probably won’t for much longer so I suppose this also could have gone down into the next category, but another Thoth style deck takes that slot.

7: The “I May Have To Delete Your Number” Date… the one that really didn’t work but you still haven’t broken up with yet, what’s stopping you?

Tabula Mundi Tarot en Minima

Tabula Mundi Tarot in Minima – This one doesn’t give me the same bad/uncomfortable vibes as the Crowley Thoth, but there’s something about the artwork that bothers me and I find myself often confused when I look at the cards in this deck. This is a weird sensation for me. I’ve been reading tarot for over 18 years, and reading imagery cards for years more… and yet these cards are just so confusing to me and no amount of familiarizing myself with them seems to solve the problem. For some inexplicable reason, I haven’t quite given up on them yet tho.

8: The Forever Love… True love… ok this one might be on the favourites list too but I’m curious and couldn’t resist!

Herbal Tarot

Herbal Tarot – I could have put one of my soul decks here, but if I’m entirely honest? Even though this is not one of my soul decks, it will forever hold my deep and abiding love. This was my second tarot deck and I have worn out multiple copies of it over the years. It’s diverse, multi-national, and there are a number of androgynous characters presented in the imagery. And… it’s all about plants. Unlike my very first tarot deck, which was horrible, this deck made sense to me immediately and was easy to read from the start.

9: The Stormy On/Off Date… the one you can’t stay away from, equal parts passion, lust and fighting! The one you have to have a break from but can’t stay away from either!

Tarot of the Sidhe

Tarot of the Sidhe – I find the artwork in this deck garish, and sometimes abrasive. And yet… there’s something about this deck that draws me back again and again. I’m not sure what it is, but I can’t help reaching for it in the summer months, even if I can only use it a few times before having to set it back on the shelf again.

10: The Friends With Benefits Date… who can you run to without commitment whenever you just have a need for them? The one who always just slots right back in like you’ve never been apart?

Hanson Roberts Tarot

Hanson Roberts Tarot – This was my third ever tarot deck, and like the Herbal Tarot mentioned above, I have worn out multiple copies of this deck over the years. There’s just something very “coming home” about picking up this deck and working with it. The artwork, the faces, the colors… it’s like a close friend giving a warm hug.

Picking Up A Previous Practice

Today’s meditation was ten minutes long and I fidgeted through the entire process.   I had an idea for a new organization method for my decks, and honestly?  I just couldn’t calm down about it enough to do anything useful with those ten minutes of meditation.  I will try again tonight before bed.   Now that I have everything rearranged (again), I should hopefully be a bit less fidgety.

Tarot of the Sidhe - The Dreamer, Ace of SwordsToday’s draw is The Dreamer card (Ace of Swords), which is traditionally a representation of inspiration, new ideas, eureka moments, and mental clarity.

What stood out the strongest to me in the imagery of this card is the hands at the bottom.  Their positioning is probably supposed to represent the alchemical air symbol of an upright triangle with a line through it.  The thing is, though?  It looks an awful lot like the Hakini mudra (except that the pinky fingers are not bent in that mudra, so it’s not exactly… right.

Still, it’s actually pretty fitting, as the Hakini mudra is used for concentration and to boost the brain including memory, inspiration, and cooperation between the right and left hemispheres.

I see this card’s appearance today as a reminder of the benefits that including mudras into my medication can have.  This is an activity that I have really slacked off on over the past few months, but I think it’s time to start incorporating them into my practice again… and perhaps I’ll even start with the Hakini.

DECK USED:  TAROT OF THE SIDHE

#TarotForGrowthAugust Challenge Prompt
Topic: I’m struggling to move past trauma.
Question: Who can I turn to for help enforcing those boundaries?

Tarot Mundi In Minima Tarot

Reading Summary: Family and friends (Four of Wands) will step up to provide solid back up (Knight of Discs) when needed (The Tower).

Take Away:  Friends and family is the answer here.  It’s those that are nearest and dearest to me that I can depend on.  People like Gideon, my sister, Z, J, Ms B… these are all people that are a part of my inner circle of love and support and people that I can depend on to help when I need it.    The key here is in the last card in this spread, which is The Tower, and the deck’s way of stressing “when you need it”. 

DECK USED:  TABULA MUNDI IN MINIMA TAROT

#DiscordTarotholicsAug2020 Challenge Prompt
Topic: Do Spread #4

Odd Hand TarotSeeds SownAce of Pentacles – The seeds that I planted in the spring that have flourished have to do with finding a new balance between my responsibilities and my life.  This isn’t so much about the balance itself, which is still in the works, but the openness and willingness to make the changes needed and start upon a new path.

The ChaffStrength – Those seeds that have not flourished are the ones that I plant every year and this year have chosen  not to encourage.  That is the tendency to push and shove and force my way forward with determination and blind focus. In the past I have done this to my own detriment again and again, and it is something that has been working for me less and less with each year that passes.

The HarvestFour of Wands – Friends and family connections are going to be very important as I prepare to reap the rewards of my summer’s hard work. This card indicates I need to make sure I’m not just getting myself ready for the busy season ahead, but my those around me as well… both those that are here to help with that busy time, and those that are stuck waiting in the wings for the rush to end.

DECK USED:  ODD HAND TAROT

Lionharts #TheAugustTarot #ElementalChallenge
Question: How can I best provide help and support to my loved ones at this time?

Luminous Void Tarot

Reading Summary: When crap happens and they feel depressed (Five of Discs), be generous (Six of Discs) with my advice (The Hierophant) and my emotional support (King of Cups).

Take Away:  Honestly?  As much as I love to help people?  I always feel like when I give advice that it might be overstepping.  I mean, I know that the advice is decent and I have a lot of experience under my belt to base my advice through… and yet it always feels like encroaching? I’m relatively sure that this is not the case and just my own personal insecurities, but there’s always that worry of being seen as some sort of know it all. You know, not the good kind but the annoying kind.

Funny enough, you would think it would be the emotional support part of this reading that I balk at, but when it comes to those closest to me that I love and that love me? I don’t have a problem reaching out with a hug or some emotional support.  It’s probably one of the only scenarios in life where being emotionally connected doesn’t feel awkward or uncomfortable.

DECK USED:  LUMINOUS VOID TAROT

#ConnectWithYourDeckChallenge by E Roebuck-Jones
Question: How can I make the world a better place?

Pride Tarot

Ten of Swords – Show by example just how much you can survive.

Ooph.  Okay so this one is a hard one for me.  Not that I don’t share my struggles or that people aren’t aware of some of the things I have been through.  But if I were to list out all of the crazy ass shit that’s happened in my life…. or even just the ones that left scars on my body… it would sound like some sort of catastrophic “The Man Born With No Luck” B-movie or something. I have survived a lot.  A LOT.  But… it feels weird to put it all out there, which is sort of what you have to do if you want to show people by example just how much a person can survive and continue to move on from.

Eight of Wands – Send out into the world the positivity that you create. (imagery based)

This is something that I do regularly and love the most about my home business.  I love making beautiful things and sending them out to others to love and cherish.  I hope that every single piece of jewelry and other creation I make finds a home where it can brighten someone’s day… or many days, as the case may be.  I instill these hopes and that intent into each of the pieces I make.

Knight of Swords – Choose your battles wisely.

Sometimes we all pick battles we shouldn’t.  I think that’s a part of life and learning when and where to pick the battles that really mater and mean something.  To make the world a better place, it’s important to examine the battles you’re deciding to fight, and make sure they’re really worth the time, effort, energy, and emotion that you’re going to pour into them.  What is the motivation behind becoming involved?

DECK USED:  PRIDE TAROT

Be More Careful

Today’s meditation was ten minutes long, and took place in the bathtub.  I spent a great deal of time in the bathtub today actually.  What was supposed to be an hour in the tub with meditation and a little relaxation turned into two hours… and included a nap. Yes, I know that I need to be more careful about that.  I promise… it wasn’t intentional.  It was just so comfortable that I ended off dozing off.

Funny enough, I did my first reading for someone else in the tub today as well.   Mostly because I didn’t feel like getting my ass out and going to my reading table.   I have a few waterproof decks beside the bath so I just did it there and laid them out on the bath mat beside the tub.   Oddly?  I think it gave my interpretation ability a bit of a warmer tone.  Like… as in the reading seemed a bit more emotion based than normal.

Tarot of the Sidhe - Pan, The DevilToday’s draw is the Pan card (The Devil), which is traditionally a representation of temptations and self destructive behaviors.  This can include things like addictions as well as the development of bad habits, or allowing oneself to be “lead astray”.

This is me… sleeping in the tub.   I mean it’s really that clear to me in this moment.  I know it’s supposed to kind of look like sex or surrender, but what I see here in this imagery today is her… floating.  She looks like she’s floating.   In fact, when I first pulled this card today, I barely noticed the Pan at all, only her.

The message in this card is a warning that I need to pay attention to.  It tells me that sleeping in the tub is more than just “flirting” with danger, but is truly dangerous, and I need to make more of an effort to not doze off when I’m in there.

DECK USED:  TAROT OF THE SIDHE

#TarotForGrowthAugust Challenge Prompt
Topic: I’m struggling to move past trauma.
Question: What boundaries must be established for me to feel safe when confronting my trauma?

Gypsy Palace Tarot

Reading Summary: The Nine of Wands popped out while I was considering whether I wanted to have this question be about boundaries for myself or boundaries for others. This card indicates that the boundaries are about myself.

Both the Nine of Wands and the Queen of Swords are pointing to the past (to the left) indicating that I need to make sure that I am keeping my past out of my healing process.

The High Priestess indicates that in order to make the decisions on when my past can be incorporated and when I can’t, I need to look inside myself and make sure that I am taking a healthy path and not a hurtful one (indicated by the Priestess’ heart crossed arms).

Take Away:  My past is not there to help me heal… it’s what I’m healing from. I need to be judicious in how I incorporate my past into my healing journey in order to ensure it only does good and not harm.

DECK USED:  GYPSY PALACE TAROT

#DiscordTarotholicsAug2020 Challenge Prompt
Question: What do I need to hear right now?

Tarot of WhyReading Summary: It’s OK to take control (The Chariot) of your personal time and retreat when you need (Four of Swords) to as long as you’re doing it in healthy ways (Four of Cups) that make you happy and bring joy to your life (The Sun).

Take Away:  This reading should be titled “Don’t Be A Sourpuss”.  If you’re going to take time for yourself, that’s okay… but make sure it’s for the right reasons.  Healthy reasons.  Don’t retreat just to wallow in a crappy mood or allow yourself to be a grump.  Alone time needs to be a time of restoration and enjoyment.

This is actually good advice because when I’m feeling grumpy and pessimistic, I have a habit of retreating into myself.  This habit has a purpose, as when I am dealing with an actual major depressive episode, this allows me to continue to function even though I’m a complete mess on the inside.  By pulling into myself, many people can’t even tell what’s really going on… and thus I can continue to put on the appearance that everything is fine and function normally under the observation of others.

The thing is, though, I don’t need to use this method outside of my MDEs.  It’s become a habit to retreat for any negative emotion, regardless of whether it’s clinical grade depression or not.   And that…. is not healthy.

DECK USED:  TAROT OF WHY

Lionharts #TheAugustTarot #ElementalChallenge
Question: How can I best support and nurture positive growth in my community at this time?

Sacred Rose Tarot

Reading Summary: You have the tools (The Magician) to help others reason out (King of Swords) their conflicts (Five of Wands) and come to a resolution (King atop Five). Spend some time with your friends and have some fun (Three of Cups). You can bring them together and resolve their disagreements to restore positive balance in the relationship (The Sun).

Take Away:  This reading is about J and his parents.  Both J and his dad are out of work right now, and living in the same house.  They butt heads a lot when they have to spend too much time together, which has been their situation for the past few months.

I stopped by J’s place today on my way home from my hike and threw horseshoes out in the yard with him and his dad.  His mom came to me before I left to give me her customary hug and thanked me.  She said that coming over helped disperse some of the tension in the house, and especially between J and his dad.  She told me I should come over more often and stop avoiding them because of the pandemic issues.

It was nice that I was able to help.  I very much do worry about the whole pandemic thing and accidentally bringing it to their home tho, just as J does… which is why he’s not hanging out over here at my house much these days.

DECK USED:  SACRED ROSE TAROT

#ConnectWithYourDeckChallenge by E Roebuck-Jones
Question: How can I better focus on the future while being present in the present?

Tarot del Fuego

Reading Summary: When things build up and eventually get to a point of  noticeable change (Death), it can sometimes create an emotional mess from worry, pain, and sense of loss (Three of Swords). But, if you focus on your passions and hold steadfast to your goals in the present (King of Wands), you’ll have the tools you need to move forward into the future (The Magician).

seraphimSide Note:  You know, I just realized something about this deck. A lot of the imagery in these cards remind me of the Catholic representations of the higher hierarchy angels like the Seraphim and Cherubim. Multiple wings, multiple eyes… and just sayin’?  But the image I’ve chosen to share here in this post is one of the least freaky of the depictions I’ve seen.

Okay so back to the reading…

Take Away:  That’s the thing about the present, yeah?  It’s full of changes.  Every day there are changes, some good and some not so good.  Sometimes they slip by without being noticed, but other times it’s like you trip over them and skin both knees in the process.    Those changes that you trip over are why it’s so hard to stay in the present sometimes instead of becoming overly focused on the future.  The fear and other emotions they illicit make you want to turn away and look to something better, to disengage with the change and the feelings they create.

The cards here say that instead of disengaging by looking forward, a better path would be to focus on the things that spark your fire and keep you going.  Focus on what you can do now, and apply your attention and abilities to these things.  Let the future take care of itself.

DECK USED:  TAROT DEL FUEGO

Time To Climb

Today’s meditation was a little over ten minutes long, and although it was a guided meditation, I got so far into the zone that I don’t think I heard a word of it.  It was very relaxing and was primarily focused on the selenite resting against my solar plexus, and the ebb and flow of my energy timed to match my breaths.

Tarot of the SidheToday’s draw is the Dreamer Four (Four of Swords), which is traditionally a representation of taking time to rest and recover, a restorative pause along your path, and can indicate a time of needed recuperation and healing.

I actually have a bit of difficulty with the imagery on this card.  Something about it hearkens back to the Lady Freda Harris artwork of the original Thoth deck, and although this card does not make me internally flinch the way the artwork in that other deck does?  It does create a feeling of discomfort. I’m pretty sure it has to do with the curved rays crisscrossing behind the sun?   I don’t know.  It’s uncomfortable.

That said… I do see the symbolism here in the figure in the center and the glowing sun.  The mountains and clouds.   And that actually does speak to me today.

The message here is a reminder that sometimes restoration and recovery isn’t about taking a nap or lying down, or resting the body at all.   Sometimes it’s about getting outside and connecting with nature, breathing in the fresh air and feeling the exertion of doing something you love that makes the body work and lungs strain.

It’s a reminder that I need to go for a hike this weekend.

DECK USED:  TAROT OF THE SIDHE

#TarotForGrowthAugust Challenge Prompt
Topic: I’m struggling to move past trauma.
Question: What are my expectations of how my loved ones should support my healing?

El Gran Tarot Esoterico

Reading Summary: They should instinctively know what I need (The High Priestess), and come forward on their own to take on more responsibility and control (The Chariot) so that I don’t feel so overburdened (Ten of Wands).

Take Away:  Well, that made me squirm a bit to admit. Okay so I guess I do sort of feel this way sometimes… even though I know that these expectations are ridiculous, and that I need to communicate what’s going on so that my loved ones know what I need and when I need it. As much as they want to help, they aren’t mind readers.

DECK USED:  EL GRAN TAROT ESOTERICO

#DiscordTarotholicsAug2020 Challenge Prompt
Question: What accomplishment from this month deserves celebration?

Stunning TarotReading Summary: Choosing (Two of Swords) to work on my inner dynamic (The High Priestess) by focusing on the good in my life and what makes me happy (Nine of Cups), and prioritizing it  over the habitual urge to close myself off and bear down on my business (Nine of Wands).

Take Away:  Honestly, I hadn’t really felt like I had accomplished all that much this month. And then this reading made me realize that I might have something done something rather significant after all.  The fact that this is such a significant accomplishment is that it’s something I have never done before.  Something I never would have even considered okay to do.

But this year I’ve worked very hard to allow my emotional growth some free reign, and to give myself more slack than I’ve ever given myself before.  I’ve found myself trying to heal inner wounds I didn’t even realize existed and, in some cases, actually thought were positive traits.  Traits that I’ve come to realize are harmful.

This month I made it the entire month where every day I made a concerted effort to not push so hard or demand so much, but instead focus upon the things that make me happy and create positive emotional responses.  I’ve focused on not abusing myself, but instead fostering that internal need to do less, and enjoy more.    I think that’s pretty significant.

DECK USED:  STUNNING TAROT

Lionharts #TheAugustTarot #ElementalChallenge
Topic: Give thought to all of your August lessons and draw a card.

Encore Tarot - Knight of Swords“Preparation paves the road” is the lesson that came to mind in relation to this month and that is the lesson I focused upon when pulling this card. The Knight of Swords here then signified the swift action that prior preparation and planning can encourage. It’s much easier to go after what you want and get the things done that you need to get done, when you’ve done the prep work first and everything is in order and ready for you.

Somewhere along the line I managed to forget this very valuable lesson. I have been saving all of my orders work to be done on certain days, and on other days I was just doing random crap that needed done. This might work when things are really slow… but it doesn’t work at all when you have a lot that needs to get done.  As the end of the month has approached, this lesson has become more and more apparent, and it’s time to start spreading my work out more, so that I’m not racing the clock so often or doing so many all-nighters on Mondays and Thursdays.

DECK USED:  ENCORE TAROT

#ConnectWithYourDeckChallenge by E Roebuck-Jones
Question: How would I feel without sadness/anger/disappointment?

Magic Tarot

Reading Summary: Incomplete (Nine of Swords) and half blind (Eight of Swords) with very little motivation (Knight of Wands Rx).

Note:  Nine of Swords represents “incomplete” in this spread because the question is about cutting out everything that the Nine of Swords represents.  This makes its presence in the spread an outlier… on the edges alone and bleeding.

Take Away:  The fact is is that people need these negative emotions to help balance out the positive ones. Without that balance you cannot be whole and complete… nor can you grow, because you will be left blinded and unable to see due to half of the language the world uses teach you being silenced.

DECK USED:  MAGIC TAROT