The beginning of your journey...
Initial Impression: What will I be learning today? or Who is the personality I will be meeting today?
Symbols or Images in the Card: The Page is standing high in the mountains - which makes sense because the suit of swords represents air - and he is practicing - which also make sense because the suit of swords represents intelligence and intellect. He/she is a savvy, ambitious person, but can come across as kind of a douche because she's/he's so focused on her/his agenda and success. He/she might not think some tasks are for him/her to complete if he/she thinks the task is pointless or futile. You can't always count on her/him to get her/his stuff done if his/her heart is in it. BUT, when her/his heart is powered by an idea or a project they believe in, she/he will be dedicated, driven, excited, and will pull you into that excitement as well. He/she looks good. He/she looks put together and charming, and they are good company - even if they do like a good prank every now and then.
Greeting Card Message: Be focused today - even if it's on stuff you don't like doing. Be the best version of yourself today and look for new opportunities. People do want to help you succeed. Help yourself by throwing your heart into everything you have to accomplish today and try to ignore that trickster voice in your head that occasionally likes to prank people.
Initial Impressions: New cycles starting and old cycles ending.
Symbols or Images in the card: What I like about the Llewellyn card for the Wheel of Fortune is how steampunk it feels. There are four circles in the four quadrants that have winged creatures in each circle - starting at the top left - a winged man, an eagle, a winged lion, and ending with a winged bull. In the center of the card is the wheels with letters - the letter TAROT (if you come around and count the last T a second time) interrupted by the letter Yod and Hay in Hebrew. Sitting out the outside of the wheel are three creatures - kind of inexplicable - one is a hydra with many many heads, one is a woman with wings and lion's body holding a sword, and the last is an Egyptian looking man/canine mix. Just looking at this card leaves one to wonder.
Pollack says in 78 Degrees of Wisdom the wheel is Karma - you live your life and reincarnate from one body to the next. She also says it's "...an assessment a person makes of where his or her life has gone and where it is going. On a deeper level, the vision remains mysterious and symbolic. We can see what we have made of our particular lives, but fate remains a mystery" (86).
Basically the Wheel symbolizes change and shifting cycles. In fact you may come back on this time or situation again. When I first graduated college I lived in Manchester-by-the-Sea, in the top floor attic apartment in a three story home right on the corner of Desmond Avenue and School Street. I then moved to an apartment in Magnolia on Ocean Avenue which burned and I had to find a new place to live - and I wound up in a different apartment back on Desmond Avenue in Manchester-by-the-Sea. When I moved back onto Desmond Ave, I felt like I missed something the first time. Maybe there was something I didn't learn when I was there before and I had to go back to where I started right out of college to pick it up again. To be honest, I don't know if I learned the lessons I needed to learn there until a couple of years ago. I don't know if I will ever know why the cycle needed to be repeated.
There are people who come into your life and then they go out of your life and then they come into your life again. There are people you are with for seasons and then the seasons shift and you find that they no longer resonate with you. There are situations that you seem to have to be in, to go through, and then go through again. The statistics are that it takes a domestic violence victim seven times to actually leave her/his abusive partner. Seven times of leaving and going back before they have the strength to end it for good. It's all cycles of learning and experience.
Greeting Card Message: Where are you today? Have you been on this land before? What are you learning? Where are you growing? Are you "getting it"? Or rather, where are you in your life? Are we the masters of our ships or are we tossed about going wherever willy-nilly? What makes a person drop anchor and say, "This is where I will buoy around on the water for awhile before I pull the anchor up again?" What part of this life is us deciding and what part is fate?
Initial Impression: Do i want to mess with this guy?
Symbols or Images in the Card: A man, dressed in armor and wearing red and orange, fire imagery, is sitting on a throne with a giant lion's head. He holds a wand and sits in a demeanor that says, "Yeah? Really??" He looks like he would take no guff from anyone. He also has a salamander crawling at his feet.
To be honest, I struggle a little with the court cards. I know they each have their own personalities and characters, but I struggle to know who everyone is. I'm still studying such things. I see a lot of what I needed to hear today in Liz Dean's description of the King of the Wands. In The Ultimate Guide to Tarot, Liz Dean says that as an influence, the King of Wands represents the right to share your ideas and be yourself. She says that the entrepreneurial spirit is deep with the King of Wands and if I make a plan, it will be well received. If I initiate the plan then the practical support will be there. She says, "What you do now reflects your truth. Don't let your perfectionism get in the way of your creativity -- what you do is more than good enough" (231). The truth is, I struggle big much with the idea in my head with how it turns out on paper. I want what I produce to be absolutely perfect, but in reality, my really, really good is plenty fine.
I think that's true for a lot of us. If we don't know we will succeed, we don't even go for it. The voices in our heads tell us we will f*** it up, or we will fail completely. We worry about what other people will think of us. We wonder if by sharing ourselves we will be made fun of, or worse attract evil internet trolls.
When it all come down, I would rather have tried and failed and tried again then to never have tried at all. I've had a year of "trying" and I've learned so much in the process. I've learned what I like, what I don't like, and the ability to take skills from one area (direct marketing skills from an MLM) and put it to how to create a online tarot business - which is still in its infancy.
Greeting Card Message: So, today, what is your dream? What are you thinking about, wishing for? What is stopping you? Name those things, even list them out, and then start to brainstorm ways to remove those obstacles. Because the world needs us to walk in our passions and our loves. The world needs us to dare and dream and be bold. The time is right for such things and whatever words in your head stop you, the King of Wands says, "Really?? Find a way to overcome."
Initial Impressions: How do I become more carefree and excited about the adventure I am living?
Symbols or Images in the Card: The Fool is off on his adventure! He has his trusty companion, the ever excited and loyal pup. He is dressed in motley, but don't let that fool you. He is smart, cunning, witty, and insightful. He is carefree and if he knows he is using a wand (a powerful tool inside of the tarot) to hold his stuff, he does not let on. He carries a white rose, the symbol of purity.
The Fool is trustworthy and he is just starting out on the cycle of adventure. He has many things to learn on the path. He will mature and deepen as he goes forward down the trail, but for now, for today, he is optimistic, hopeful, excited, and a bit fool-hearty, but that is his charm.
He is full of positive energy and excitement. I was talking to an established tarot card reader yesterday and she said the Fool has a bit of the "Whateve's" spirit. A bit of "whatever comes, doesn't matter," and a bit of the ability to let go of that stuff that tends to mire the rest of us down. He lets that stuff roll right off his back.
Greeting Card Message: Tap into the fun and light-hearted today. Tap into the spirit of letting the worry go, let go of the agenda and the plan a little, and allow life to unfold today in its beautiful calliope of sound and color. That doesn't mean there aren't things to do, it just means in midst of hustle and bustle, notice the view of the skylines, the trees, the way the wind feels as you are running to catch the train, the way the birds sound, or the way your food actually tastes. Take time to notice the little stuff and see a bit of adventure in every task you take on today.
Initial Impression: What are we starting?
Symbols or Images in the Card: A young individual (sort of a non-sex identified person) is standing in nice-ish clothes - all red and orange to represent the fire of the wands suit. He has a hood, in case it gets cold and he's going to be there a while. He is holding a wand, which is just starting to get leaves. There are some rocky mountains and clouds in the background.
It seems kind of appropriate that I drew this card today. I asked the deck as I was shuffling, "What does the world need to know today?"
Rachel Pollack in 78 Degrees of Wisdom states that the wands represent the herald or announcement of a beginning of a project or new phase of life - it could be an announcement in a relationship status, or it can practical plans, such as my saying for the first time that TruthSeekerTarot will become a place where I will offer readings and teachings, and a blending of ideas with tarot - more on this to come. The Page of Wands announces such things. The Page of Wands can also represent a messenger, a message, or information. One last thing Pollack states the Page of Wands represents is a faithful friend or lover (169).
This is a card of enthusiasm and excitement for learning, for experiencing new things, for bringing your A-game to the table even if you are new at the venture. This is a card that says, Yes! to whatever you've been worrying about. Just be sure to check the fine print and the hidden agendas before signing on the dotted line. The Page of Wands is enthusiastic and the doors are open - just be sure this is a door you want to go through and you are not being too hasty.
Greeting Card Message: Good news! New information! New opportunities are on the horizon! It's time to announce anything new you are planning.
Initial Impression: Where am I giving today and where I am receiving?
Symbols or Images in the card: A wealthy and well-dressed man is standing outside of a castle. He is holding two pentacles in one hand, while having four more. Three are hanging from a chain and are attached to scales - a sign of justice and measuring, and one is on his shirt front. The two he is holding in his right hand, he is offering them to kneeling and poorly dressed people - we can guess begging and needy. The wealthy man is not shaming those he is helping, nor do the beggars look to be embarrassed in their desperation.
We are all in a position of being able to help and in a position of needing help. I work in a hospital. We are given assignments. Some days the assignment we are given is a do-able job and other days the amount we are asked to complete is not capable of being completed by one person. Which means, on days when I get my work done, I start helping others who are struggling, because there will be days when I will need to cry out for help.
Brigit Esselmont states in The Ultimate Guide to Tarot Card Meanings that the man in the wealthy clothes who is giving away, it demonstrates that he has a balance in his finances - that what he has and what he is giving is balanced. The amount that is coming in and the amount that is going out is in balance. Rachel Pollack in 78 Degrees of Wisdom states that the Six of Pentacles is "the life force" - call this what you will: God, Allah, the universe, your spirit guides, etc. - gives not only what we need and can receive, but can also overwhelm or "overpower" us with spiritual wonder. She puts in the caveat that "the life force" will not overwhelm you or overpower you unless you are looking for it, or open to it happening.
Greeting Card Message: What gifts do you have to give today? What gifts are you receiving today? What bits of wonder do you need from "the life force" and how do you receive what "the life force" has to offer?
Initial Impression: Where today am I going to have to hold my ground, despite opposing voices?
Symbols or Images in the card: The man who figures prominently is standing on a peak, a higher plain. We know there are others, as we see their wands pointed at him, aggressively. However, the figure we see is ready to face the attack. He has a firm stance and it is believed, at least I believe, that he will hold his ground. This threat to his position will not affect his ability to hold this piece of ground.
Pollack in 78 Degrees of Wisdom states that the wands have the expectation that they will win and they usually do. It's the thrill of the battle they really enjoy. She says, "People under Wands' influence need to know they are alive, they need that charge of adrenalin (sic) to show them that the Fire still runs through them" (175).
Today will be about passion and standing for what you believe in and knowing you are correct on your bit of land. Others may question you, but that will be a bit of sporting banter for you, though they may take it more seriously than you do. You know where you stand and why. You have right and morals and FIRE on your side today. Your beliefs, your values, your morals, and your love of life will carry you through the skirmishes of the day. And admit it - you kind of like the challenge and questioning which makes you feel a little more alive.
Greeting Card Message: When you have a bit of notice for what you are doing and a little recognition, people will be paying attention and perhaps vying for your role. Stand firm in who you are and what you are working toward. Be bold in your stance and you will maintain your ground.
Initial Impressions: Where am I judging myself? Where have I been so hard on myself and I need to give myself freedom, compassion, and the ability to let go of the past, the mistakes, and move into a new, deeper space of self-acceptance?
Symbols or Images in the Card: An angel in heaven with giant wings is blowing a trumpet. The sound is vibrant and affecting. There are three people, all naked, standing and receiving the sound of the trumpet, maybe even receiving more than sound that the angel is offering.
Nakedness in tarot - the symbolism of it - is the stripping bare, being completely exposed, and okay with it. You have nothing hide. Your past, your present - they are fully integrated. You are at one with yourself. How many of us can say that we are at one with ourselves? There are stuff in my past that I have been looking at pretty closely, especially with friendships and relationships, and all I see are my flaws. All I see are the ways I messed up, the mistakes I made, and the measuring stick I am using to judge myself in these memories is rigorous and harsh and the measuring stick I use for the other person is minuscule. In fact, I don't even think I have a judgemental measuring stick for them.
Esselmont says the Judgement card is about self-evaluation. Through this self-evaluation, you will be cleansed of your wrong doings, mistakes, flubs, and those memories that make you cringe. Guilt and sorrow will be lifted -- you will be released from their power. It will be a "wonderful purging process" that will "leave you feeling refreshed and ready to take on any new challenges" (122).
In the self-evaluation process, I encourage you to be kind, compassionate, and even a little soft-hearted with yourself. We are mean to ourselves in general and this is a time to grow -- not belittle or experience shame. We are all flawed and getting in touch with our past and our previous decisions, however wrong you see them in 20/20 vision, you were doing the best you could given the circumstances you were in. When you start embracing that truth, the past and the present will reconcile in a way that will bring the kind of freedom being represented in the Judgement card.
Greeting Card Message: May you stop running from the memories, find a way to embrace them, find a way to give yourself a giant break, and stride forward onto new ground a more healed, whole, and balanced person, able to love yourself and give love more freely.
Initial Impression: What's my goal? What am I headed toward?
Symbols or Images in the card: The chariot. It has wheels and room for one to stand. It's hard to tell if there is sitting room. It has an awning with stars on the cloth and a moon at the fore. The man driving is standing - a power position. The sphinxes that pull it are powerful - one is at the ready. The road is before you. You are headed in a good direction - you see the path. You see where you are headed, but maybe the sky meets the road at the horizon well before your destination. This card calls for determination to get to your goal, as well as self-discipline, and hard work.
The fact that this card is a "seven" means that it calls for reflection, wisdom, observation and meditation. As I said in a previous daily card about this card, the sphinxes need you to answer a riddle before they will move. So, perhaps today is a day to notice the crazy-ass adventure you are on, the roads you drive down, the direction your life headed, but to also stop, breathe, take time to reflect, and answer this riddle: What is your life purpose and is this the road that will get you to your destination?
If you don't know your life purpose, maybe that's the place to start. Don't pull your chariot over in the middle of the lane. You've been going full tilt. To pull the reigns tight at this point could cause an accident. But, as you are racing forward in this life you're living, pause and ask, "What do I need today at my soul level, and is this trajectory on which I am headed - is this the trajectory that I want to be my life's work?"
Greeting Card Message: The Chariot shows you are going at huge fast speeds in the course of your life. The sphinxes are riddling and you are driving. Are you hearing their call to discover if the path you are on is the path that feeds your soul?
Initial Impression: Who am I teaching and what am I being taught?
Symbols and Images in the Card: There is a man standing between two pillars (which remind us of the High Priestess' pillars). He is standing in front of a powerful view of waterfalls and mountains - and he is clearly in a building that is taller than this natural landscape. He is holding a long rod with three cross beams and there are two keys crossed between his feet. He is holding two fingers up on his right hand - the forefinger and the middle finger, pressed together and his thumb is out. He's wearing an intricate gold hat on his head. There are two cloaked people facing him, perhaps kneeling before him and one is making the same hand gesture at the Hierophant with his right hand.
Rachel Pollack in 78 Degrees of Wisdom states that the Hierophant stands for church, doctrines, and education in general. She says it can be conformity to society's expectations and codes for behavior. She says it can even be giving up some responsibility by only following the rules or expectations of an outside code. It also represents our inner sense of obedience, the need to follow the rules.
Barbara Moore in Llewellyn's Classic Companion explains the word Hierophant comes from the word "hieropany" which means the sacred being manifested. She goes on to explain the Hierophant represents our relationship with our faith or the guiding principles of our belief system and how we as individuals choose to deepen our understanding of our faiths and how we choose to express our beliefs - including our thoughts, feelings and actions.
Of interest, the Hierophant does not just have a religious bent, but he also represents formal education or even just pursuing knowledge about a topic you are interested in. Brigit Esselmont in The Ultimate Guide to Tarot Card Meanings states this person can be represented by a psychotherapist, wise counselor, a priest or pastor, a spiritual mentor -- anyone you turn to for wise council. She also states this card could mean that you are thinking of joining a religious community or a different kind of community or institution - like joining a gym or a country club.
Greeting Card Message: What are the philosophies of life that I am holding onto today and how do I see them enacted? Where am I putting my own values on display and how do I manifest more of what I believe in constructive and productive ways?