Self-reflection: Tarot

Yesterday. Nothing scheduled. How delightful. I bundle up for a walk as if it were Arctic winter outdoors, but it is only in the 40s. Hardening up to the cold is part of the autumn ritual. Otherwise, the chill gets into my bones and doesn’t leave till May.

Walk done. No ambition. So I decide to scan and archive the first nine months of my 2019 journal. Busy work. Plus, always interesting to see where I’ve been. I was reminded that I did a stint with Tarot cards a few months ago. There’s an activity to get me in a mystic mood!

I’m not deep into Tarot, but it’s a useful tool. It resonates with Carl Jung’s work on the importance of symbols and Joseph Campbell’s work on the power of myth. And the randomness of pulling cards can spark new ways of looking at the same old, same old of everyday life.

Angeles Arrien recommends laying the shuffled cards into her Path of Balance spread once each season. Okay. It is fall, the start of my monastic season.

I go through the ritual. As luck would have it, the #1 card is XII DEATH. Way to get serious.

Tarot: the tools, the message

But I’m enough a student of mythology (and life) to know that symbolic Death is the precursor to Rebirth, Resurrection, and/or Transformation. What does it mean to have it associated with the Head (or my current communication mode)? Well, it is autumn, of course–time to harvest, time to let go of things that are to longer productive. Find a new voice. Thinking, thinking…

In a nutshell, I’m interpreting the rest as follows:

#2 Spiritual receptivity: 2 WANDS (DOMINION). I’m open for business.

#3 Physical/emotional receptivity: 3 DISKS (WORKS). I can bring focus and perseverence to jobs I tackle.

#4 Physical/emotional power and initiative: 5 CUPS (DISAPPOINTMENT). Oh-oh. Some profound sense of vulnerability or regret will need to be addressed.

#5 Spiritual teaching: XXI UNIVERSE. Ready to wholehearted explore the unknown.

#6 Ability to maintain balance: II HIGH PRIESTESS. I can rely on my intuition and resourcefulness.

Look! I’ve reduced the exercise to a tidy list of affirmations. “Where is the real work here?” you ask.

The real work is yet to be revealed. That requires some quiet time, some scribbling, some brainstorming. I jumped to voice. But voice contains so many inflections, carries so many different tunes. Meanwhile, I have poured my wine and told you my story.

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