Reading #14: Fool’s journey

Posted in Alchemical Tarot, Journal on August 29th, 2010 by Kristine Gazel

Robert M. Place who is the brilliant artist behind the Alchemical Tarot, has just launched a new book, The Fool’s Journey. That inspired me to ask this question: Where am I, beeing the Fool, now on my creative and spiritual journey?

Again I’m using the Little Cross – telling about the situation and the challenge.

I draw Temperance for the Situation and Ace of Coins for the Challenge.

Temperance is one of the four cardinal virtues. Alchemically speaking, Temperance is about carefully balancing and mixing elements, and about delicately distilling fluids to get the right mixture of things. So. I guess Temperance has a lot to do with patience, with I’ am afraid is NOT one of my strongest traits. But this is where I am right now, in a situation that require me to be patient, calm and balanced.

And along comes a rabbit. I’m reminded about the white rabbit in the movie Alice In Wonderland, which I recently watched, the story crazily interpretated by genius Tim Burton. If that is the kind of rabbit that will challenge me, coolness is indeed called for.  But I guess this rabbit is telling me that if I keep my calm and do the right and virtous mixing of stuff, everything will come my way. This is a rabbit of abundance and fertility and growth.

There seems to be a subtle link between the Ace of Coins and Temperance that has to with the irises on the Ace of coins. Here I am quoting Leisa in the Alchemical Tarot Study Group:

“The iris flower refers to the lesser known Greek Goddess Iris. Her name means rainbow. She is usually shown winged and bearing a herald’s staff. Iris is the female counterpart of Mercury, the messenger of the gods. We find iris on the Trump XIV Temperance [on the waite-smith card”.

The rainbow as a symbol is about cherising the gifts of God, and that is also what the Rabbit is reminding me to do. Be content with what is given to you, but don’t forget about spirituality:

“You are on the right path to acquisitions, wealth, and success in the material world. Don’t forget, however, that every manifestation in the material world emanates from the spirit. Enjoy the material but don’t neglect the spiritual”.

Images from The Alchemical Tarot, copyright Robert M. Place, are used with kind permission. Visit the Alchemical Tarot website.

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Reading #10: Creative flow

Posted in Alchemical Tarot, Journal on January 24th, 2010 by Kristine Gazel

January is near it’s end – Thank Goddess! – and I feel that it is loosing it’s grip on me. It is getting better, the Light is gradually returning. It is still freezing cold, though.

I’ve had valuable help from The Alchemical Tarot. Especially the Empress and The Lady of Vessels have been encouraging during this time that I do have difficulties with -  no matter how much I tell myself that it is a matter of view point, about how to deal with it. It just does not make it that much easier, I’m afraid.

So – it is comforting to work with the cards, to receive their messages and to reflect upon them in an every day context.

I now turn again to my favorite tarot deck to ask about creativity, how to get into this creative flow, that I really would like to, of writing. Lately I have experienced some sort of writer’s block. Like the spring of creativity is freezing too.

Again I do the the Little Cross and I get The Moon crossed by The Fool.

Diana is out with her dogs. Again a female figure, that is confidently in contact with the Unconsciousness. Diana is an aspect of the Great Goddess, and I guess a pristine and virginal aspect. She is representing the White Stone or the Albedo and she is  waiting for the Active part to make the process, the conjuction,  complete.

The Alchemical Tarot Study Group says:

Tarot wisdom: The Moon represents the night before the dawn. It is a time of patience, rest and reflection, in which the soft energies of the moon compel us to enter the waters of the unconscious, the heart of the mystery.

As the embodiment of the white stone, the Moon represents a level of mastery in which are in control of our actions, because we are conscious of psychological influences which remain unconscious to others. We have been purified, and now enjoy freedom of choice in our activities, and patient acceptance of the activities of others. As it says in the I Ching, ” strength is on the inside, and glad acceptance is on the outside.” However at this level there can be a coldness or flattening of the emotions, because we still need to fully integrate our libido, and so we wait for dawn.

And it comes as the Fool, blindfolded, and naïve. The Fool is the Prima Materia, the raw material of the process, the alchemist or the artist or the writer at the beginning of the journey, knowing nothing, but ready to begin.

The Fool is blindfolded to signify his ignorance of the basic principles of alchemy. He does not yet comprehend the prima materia, the first substance needed for the Work. It exists everywhere, but the Fool does not recognize it or realize its value. As a result, he risks stumbling about in darkness. The word “blind” derives from the Indo-European term bhlendhow, which means confusion and not knowing where to go. It is related to the word “blunder,” which comes from the Old Norse term blunda, to shut one’s eyes.

Tarot wisdom: The Fool shows us that everything we need to begin our spiritual journey, to initiate change, is within our grasp. We come into beginning with the raw material of transmutation ready before us. If we place our trust in a higher order, we will be guided through the dangers and darkness and into the light. We need only open our eyes and go forward with both awe and courage.

So the Fool is not aware about the Prima Materia, I think, because he is the Prima Materia. But he needs to believe in a higher order to be guided through to the process of change and transformation -  of him self to his Self.

Again it is a question of taking the leap. Because I already know what need to be known. I do however need the agent, or the action, of just starting out on the process.

How many ways do I really need to be to told this? Write – and I will be written.

However  -  since the Moon has to do with retreat and rest, there has to be a delicate balance between resting and acting,  like the balance between ebb and flow. The Fool will experience some ordeals on his journey, therefore he will need to know when to withdraw and recuperate.

Images from The Alchemical Tarot, copyright Robert M. Place, are used with kind permission. Visit the Alchemical Tarot website.

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Reading #9: Clarity

Posted in Alchemical Tarot, Journal on January 17th, 2010 by Kristine Gazel

After shuffling and when laying the two cards on the table, I silently ask for clarity.

I got; The Situation as the Lady of Vessels crossed by the Challenge as The Five of Staffs or The Burning Hand.

The Lady is standing on the water, on top of it, without being afraid of the powers it presents, both as a Force of Nature and as a Symbol of the Unconsciousness, that we are all in danger of being owerswimmed by,  at times. But not this Lady. She is mastering this element, in fact she is it’s personification.

The Alchemical Tarot Study Group says:

Tarot wisdom: You have poise, grace and self-control. Your inner beauty shines out. You have an inner appreciation of how you handle yourself. You are mastering what you have.

This is clarity and differentiation, intuition and being confident, as is also suggested.  But then comes the Challenge as presented by the Burning Hand.

The Burning Hand

Now, the Fives – in my book – is about disturbance, challenge, change, transformation and disintegration. And this is what this hand is telling about.

The hand is about creative energy but also about not getting burned by the very same creativity:

Tarot wisdom: You are enthusiastic and inspired by your work or other fires (channels for your energy). Your creative energy is at its peak, fuelled by the spirit. If your work is all-consuming, or if you are not in touch with your higher self, the message warns that you risk burning yourself up. Do not become a workaholic.

The Hand presents a challenge to status quo, a urge to use my creativity, and this brings about change. On the other hand – so to speak, it also represents a warning of a danger. Of what happens if this creative fire is not wisely guided and chanelled. That this can lead to burn or burn out.

I guess then, that clarity comes with the ability to balance cool water with burning fire and vice versa.

You got the cool water when the fever runs high …

Equilibrium.

Images from The Alchemical Tarot, copyright Robert M. Place, are used with kind permission. Visit the Alchemical Tarot website.

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Reading #2: How can I balance my life?

Posted in Alchemical Tarot, Journal, Meanings on January 13th, 2009 by Kristine Gazel

This year I’ve decided to focus on Temperance. The idea of Temperance (and the card also) is very much about Equilibrium and Balance.

Therefore I asked the cards about how I can best balance the different aspects (roles, task and identities) of my life. As a mother, a wife, as a co-worker, a friend and as, well, me. How can I make all that a whole person?

In a short while I’m going back to my job after 11 months on maternal leave, and would like to know how to balance things so my life with my little projects, work, family etc does not end up being too stressfull and chaotic. In fact I’m a little bit afraid to get drained of energy in the swing of things.

I drew 10 of Staffs: The Phoenix : rebirth, strengthened by ordeal, renewed strength; 3 of Staffs:  The ship: a new wave, reinforcements, replenishment;  and the Lovers: The Minor Conjunction, love, sex, attraction, coming together.

One of the things I have to get used to by this deck is that Place connects Staffs (or Wands) with the feeling function, not the intuitive function, of the Psychological Types coined by C.G. Jung. So the two Staffs card makes this very much about feelings and about valuing. (Appearently feelings should not be confused with emotions. Emotions can rise from all of the four psychological functions).

There is some passion in this reading, I should say.

10 of Staffs

The Alchemical Study Group at AT says about the 10 of Staffs: “The phoenix represents the birth of a new personality. Tarot wisdom: You have been transformed by your experiences. You have been tested by fire; your old self has died away, and a new self is being born. You are renewed .”

During the months of my maternal leave and by giving birth to a new little child, some changes have already happened to me. A transformation has taken place, so that I am actually ready for the new phase in my life. I can start anew. I am also at a point in my life where I am proactively starting changes for myself. For example I’ve decided to let go of my overweight and a lot of bad habits. Im ready to let go, purify, and let something new into my life. 

There certainly is a lot of power in this image of fire. 

The Alchemical Study Group at AT says about the 3 of Staffs: Tarot wisdom: Your ship has come in. Energy has been put out, and now it returns in reward. What you have been waiting for is arriving; the project will be complete. Or, the message may point to the arrival of reinforcements to help out in a tough situation.

3 of Staffs

I guess that this means that I need not to be afraid to get drained. I have the power in my self to sustain, and there will come reinforcements from my reserves, as long as I stick to my course. Here I also have in mind the UW 3 of Wands. I also think of this ship in connection to the Six of Swords, and my soul journey, I’m going to embark on this spring. That will provide me with energy too.

The Alchemical Study Group at AT says about the Lovers, that “The Lovers mark the first or lesser conjunction of the masculine and feminine principles, symbolized by the union of the Emperor and the Empress, with their spiritual essence, Sol and Luna, in the background. This is called the alchemical wedding, and was depicted in the texts as a wedding ceremony, or more often as a consummation of the marriage. [...] [A]nd ideally balance between the male and female aspects of our personalities. The Lovers are in harmony with each other, and therefore with the entire physical world”.

The Lovers are in fact doing what the Temperance is ultimately doing on a more sophisticated level: Mixing and combining opposites; female and male energies, solar and lunar. This is the alchemical wedding in the more mundane, sensual form. I’m also thinking about my husband and about my marriage, and that tending my love for and with him really is a key to make things work – of course. All you need is love. Well, love certainly is the x-factor to make the world go around. That goes for our little world too.

Lovers

Something is also telling me that a key to balancing and healing (making whole) my life is passion. To be passionate about things. If some activity does not “do it” for me or fail to make me want to “just do it”, it has to get out of my life. 

The overall message seems to be : The balance will be right. Just do it.

Images from The Alchemical Tarot, copyright Robert M. Place, are used with kind permission. Visit the Alchemical Tarot website.

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Summary – the Sacred Days of Yule Spread

Posted in DruidCraft Tarot, Journal on January 3rd, 2009 by Kristine Gazel

I will now try to make a quick summary of the whole of the Sacred Days Of yule Spread, where I look more on the cards themselves than on their positional meanings.

I allow my self to also see this as what could happen to or in me (as a process of transformation) in the upcoming year of 2009.

I drew 4 Majors; The Hermit, The Star, The Strength, and The Fferyllt.
I drew 3 Courts: The Princess of Wands, The Princess of Swords, and the Queen of Wands.
I drew 2 fives; 5 of Pentacles and 5 of Cups,
8 and 10 of Wands, and 6 of Swords.

Thereby Wands are best presented, then Swords – and then Cups and Pentacles by one card each.
The dynamic element of fire is thus dominant, especially by counting the Strength and The Fferyllt in.
Also there is a dominance of female energy in the cards, the Princesses and the Queen, and three Majors depicting aspects of the Goddess.

I think this has something to do with stop hiding my true Self in the shadows (Hermit), and instead letting myself grow and let my potential flourish more in the open. Something new can take it’s beginning and something is on its way (The Princesses and 8 of Wands). But I have to rid my self of outburnt, old energy (10 of Wands) and let go of feelings of or fear of loosing and abandonment (The fives). I think this has to with a feeling of guilt. I also think that this will be a slow, quiet process as depicted in the 6 of Swords. And I do know what this process is, and that it will and must be slow.

The Princesses tell me that it has also something to do with creativity and getting in touch with my spirit through knowledge, learning and rationality (Princess of Swords). Maybe even through writing – which would be the natural way for me to express my creativity. The Queen of Wands as the final card tells me about manifestation and maturation of the sexuality and creativity as represented by the Princess of Wands.

Finally there is The Star, The Strength and the Fferyllt. It seems that I will be in contact with some feminine, very strong energies. They are about Tranguility, about Blending and Balancing energies, and not to be afraid of being in Power.

Overall this is about not being afraid, of letting things go and to be confident in my Self.

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What do I need to know about today?

Posted in Journal on September 23rd, 2008 by Kristine Gazel

I’m starting a tarot journal on this blog. Really private stuff I’ll keep in my private diary and my ringbinder tarotjournal, but more day-to-day readings will be posted here. Please comment, if you like.

A note on abbreviations: I’m abbreviating for example Six of Wands to 6oW, Two of Pentacles to 2oP and so on.
I’m also experimenting with creating my own understandings of the cards based on meanings of the sephiroth of the Kabbalah Tree of Life, hence the titles of the cards. This is a work in process and progress, but I’m sure to write more about it here in the blog.

10 of Pentacles

10 of Pentacles

2 of Pentacles

2 of Pentacles

6 of Wands

6 of Wands

I shuffle and draw:

6 of Wands ~
Beauty of Fire

2 of Pentacles ~ Wisdom of Earth

10 of Pentacles ~ Kingdom of Earth

Since the center card (2oP) is about carefully balancing I take it that this is about balancing my own ambitions about communication, blogging, internet (6oW) and the greater community and family I’m part of and that I am having responsibilities towards (10oP).

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