Reading #12: The comfort zone

Posted in Tarot on February 7th, 2010 by Kristine Gazel

I look towards one of the more busy weeks. I did not really have a specific question, several passed through my mind, then I just asked What do you want to tell me?

As the Situation I drew Nine Staffs – the Wolf, and as the Challenge I drew Six Vessels – the Gardener.

Fire and Water, again. Hmm. This rings a bell. I’ve had this combination before,  in another spread, though.

The Wolf

Now – in this spread – the Wolf is the Situation, while the Gardener is the Challenge. I guess this is about comfort zones, and the Grey Wolf is about sacrificing my comfort zone, my sense of serenity, in order to go to another place.

Actually Edinger writes in his Anatomy of The Psyche : Alchemical Symbolism in Psychoterapy (1994) that the sacrificing of the wolf to restore the King is a process of Calcinatio, of purifying by fire.

[The death of the king] would signify the the death of the ruling principle of consciousness, the highest principle of the authority in the hierarchial structure of the ego. Death of the king would then be accompanied by a regressive dissolution of the conscious personality. This course of events is indicated by the fact that the body of the king is fed to a ravenous wolf; that is the ego has been devoured by hungry desireousness. The wolf in turn is fed to the fire. But wolf=desire and desire=fire. Thus desire consumes itself. After a descent into hell, the ego (king) is reborn, phoenixlike, in a purified state.
(p. 19)

So, I’m (still) in Hell or put mildly, out of my comfort zone. On the internal plan some things are going on, that will take me out of my comfort zone, if I dare do the sacrificing. Of course this is not easy, and it is not nice. But it seems that I’m already out there since this creature keeps coming up in my readings.

He simply will not let me off this theeth.

And here comes the Challenge, and the good part. The wolf situation is an internal process of psychological alchemy, that I’m going through. On the external I’ll be tending to whatever that need to be tended, I will water my flowers, do whatever has to be done.

Preferably I should also be tender and nurturing towards myself.

What is your comfort zone and are you willing to sacrifice it? Can you, willingly or not? Sometimes we are not even asked.

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

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The Wolf

Posted in Alchemical Tarot, Meanings, Tarot on January 2nd, 2010 by Kristine Gazel

The Wolf

I’ve have met the wolf in my readings with the Alchemical twice. Actually it is a frightening card, and perplexing too, the Nine of Staffs. Which the discussion in the Alchemical Tarot Study Group at AT also points to.

Last time I read it as it meant that some part of myself has to be sacrifed, my egoism. But I have been doing some soulsearching recently and I have been working on my tendency to take upon my shoulders all kinds of responsibility and guilt that is not mine.

And that tendency is a like a predator preying on me and my relations with other people. Because then I’m not able to distinguish between my responsibilty and theirs.

I think that what must be sacrificed is my guilttrip, and my tendency not to guard my personal borders.  I’m working on that.

Actually I see my tendency to guard my borders as a dog, a border collie, tending to its herd, and all material coming in from others and from my self, from the unconsciousness, as a wolf.

It has to be dealt with. It has to be purified so that it can rise as something else, a greater level of consciousness.

I’m writing about this, not  because all of my previous  interpretations nor the general meanings, that Place has attributed to this card are wrong, not at all, of course.

But I realize that I have slowly started to really connect with this particular deck of tarot, on a personal level. The wolf means something specific to me, now.

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Reading #6: Another little cross

Posted in Alchemical Tarot, Journal on November 15th, 2009 by Kristine Gazel

I made another little cross; one card (the Center, the Situation) crossed by another (the Challenge).

I drew 9 of Staffs:  The Grey Wolf – sacrifice, overcome with passion crossed by 2 of Staffs Hermes and Aphrodite – one lover lost in the other.

The Wolf

I’ve met the Wolf before; It is as said above about Sacrife; “A wolf is sacrificed in a fire. This is an alchemical symbol representing the restoration of the king, who was devoured by the wolf.

Tarot wisdom: You face a calamity, a fire out of hand. Fire consumes you to exhaustion or illness. The message also suggests sacrifice, especially for a higher purpose, like suffering for the good of others, or being a martyr, or subduing the animal passions for spiritual purpose”.

The Alchemical Tarot Study Group says about 2 of Staffs; Hermes and Aphrodite:
“A hand holding a staff emerges from a cloud and lights the end of its staff from an already burning staff planted in the ground. At the base of the grounded torch is the symbol for Venus; above the hand in the air is the symbol for Mercury, which suggests the uniting of lovers. Fertility is suggested by the flowers around the grounded staff. There is life springing from this union. Tarot wisdom: Like begets like; one torch lights another. Your enthusiasm is contagious. …”
Hermes and AphroditePlease notice the little third branch on the torch – this points to the thirdness as a product of the conjunction of the two, the lovers. This is the creative outcome of the relationsship, their child. Being either a creative product or an actual child.
So – in context these cards are about my willingness to sacrifice my self and my own needs to bring an offer for the greater good, for Eros and for the relationsships I’m  in, with my family and loved ones. Both on a one to one basis i.e. to my husband, and our children – but also for Eros on a grander scale. For the things I’m engaged in that has to do with other people and with creating.

The message being that it is only possible to create something new and to engage in life on a truly passionate basis if I’m willing to let go of my old worn out (wolfy) I.

The fire will devour and purify.

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Reading #4: The Grey Wolf

Posted in Alchemical Tarot, Journal, Meanings on January 26th, 2009 by Kristine Gazel

6 of Vessels

So I asked the Alchemical: What do I need to do this last week of my maternal leave – before I go back to work?

And I drew:

6 of Vessels: The Gardener -nuturing, not too much, not too little; 9 of Staffs:  The Grey Wolf  – sacrifice, overcome with passion; and Queen of Staffs – presenting a choice between the raw and natural and the refined.

The first card makes me think that I have to nuture my kids and my family, to see to what has to be done at home, while I still have the time and energy.   The second card – The Grey Wolf – seems much more complicated. This is about sacrifice, somehow.

The Alchemical Tarot Study Group says:  “A wolf is sacrificed in a fire. This is an alchemical symbol representing the restoration of the king, who was devoured by the wolf. 

Tarot wisdom: You face a calamity, a fire out of hand. Fire consumes you to exhaustion or illness. The message also suggests sacrifice, especially for a higher purpose, like suffering for the good of others, or being a martyr, or subduing the animal passions for spiritual purpose.”

9 of Staffs - The Wolf

Hmm. This may make more sense seen with the message of the Queen: The choice between the natural raw and the refined .

The Alchemical Tarot Study Group says:  “A crowned woman in classical dress stands in the desert holding two torches. The torch in her left hand is raw and natural left as it was when taken from a tree. The other is refined, and has been carved in a decorative classical design.

Tarot wisdom: Like the Queen of Swords, the Queen of Staffs is presenting us with a choice. In this case, it is between that which is natural, unprocessed, or possibly crude, and that which is refined or sophisticated. For more insight into these choices, look at the cards that flank this one in your layout.”

So: the Wolf may be the natural, raw, instinctive, while the King – that shall be restored – being the refined, intellectual, conscious. The Wolf also reminds me of my “motherly instincts”, taking care of my offspring. The 6 of Vessels – nuturing – also has to do with cultivating and refining.  

So this apparently is a message about the possibility of making a transition from one state of mind to another. I say possibility – because the Queen of Staffs presents this as choice. I have to use this week to make this transition and put something behind me – and step out of the cave, so to speak.

 Apart from that – this deck is really “cool” to work  with, as I have suggested in an earlier post. It does not give much – don’t tell me what to do, just shows me the possibilities, then I can go figure out  for my self.   

Queen of Staffs

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