Major Arcana

The archetypes of the tarot

The Devil – A New Perspective

I have written of my experiences of The Devil in an earlier post.

My understanding of the 15th card of the Major Arcana, was seriously tainted by my familiarity with its most shadowy aspects.

The card of the addict, of pain, of bondage, of utter helplessness in the face of addiction.

 

Since I wrote that post, things have greatly improved for me.

I have learnt to harness the amazing capabilities of the mind to heal myself and get on top of the horrors of chronic pain.

I still have pain, but I no longer let it control me.

Some things never change though and I still take opiates for pain relief.

I am still an addict.

Yet, without this drug I wouldn’t be where I am now.

I certainly wouldn’t be walking four kilometers most days and losing weight.

 

It is with this fresh, and healthier, perspective, that I came to view the symbolism of The Devil in a new way.

The Devil doesn’t only encompass the negative aspects of human will and desire, but also the positives and benefits.

Even the so-called ‘good’ cards of the Tarot can have their negative aspects, just as the darker cards hold their own positives.

I draw The Devil a lot in my daily spread and have always hated the sight of it, until the other night when a new way of looking at this card broke through my long-held prejudice.

It had a lot to do with the deck I was using, the Vampyre Tarot.

The Devil - Tarot of Vampyres

The Devil – Tarot of Vampyres

This deck is very dark, just how I like my Tarot, as it seems my deeper insights come to me when using these dark decks.

But peel away the dark vampiric theme of the deck and here is the Horned God, his wild sexual nature given free rein.

The wild Gods of the forest, of nature, of animals.

The Horned God rules over our more basic natures, our survival instincts and will, our sexuality and passions.

It is through working with Herne The Hunter, that I found the willpower and drive to overcome my difficulties and embark on a fitness regime.

It is with the spirit of Herne the Horned God, that I walk those kilometers every day, whether my knee hurts or not.

The strength and vitality of this God, has helped me improve my quality of life more than I had ever thought possible.

 

The Horned Gods are lusty old creatures.

It is his fervor and desire for the Goddess that creates the seasons and ensures the fertility of the earth.

The Horned One embodies all that is masculine, natural and wild.

He is the call of the wild, the rut of the antlered stag, the untouched forest.

Pagans celebrate the lusty nature of these Gods, especially at the Sabbat of Beltane.

Sex and desire is a natural part of life, an essential part of life.

Pagans recognize this, both in themselves and in nature, and celebrate sexuality without reserve or hangups.

 

This sexual energy is not only about sex, it can also be used as the driving force that impels us to achieve our goals.

The flames of passion can be stoked into an inferno, burning with willpower and motivation.

It is this very energy which I have discovered in The Devil.

This energy which I have forged into the incentive and desire to get fit, lose weight and overcome my physical difficulties.

So far, it has been a roaring success.

Funny thing is, I have only seen this symbolism in The Devil after I have worked with, harnessed and used the flames of desire in my life.

 

The Devil is motivation, willpower, the driving force behind our achievements.

Of course, that dark side is still there, when we push these same desires too far, the dangers of The Devil are still a huge pitfall.

As long as we keep our desires and will under control, where we harness and use them to better ourselves and not the other way around, The Devil is a positive and dynamic card.

The Devil is self-improvement and achievement, most of all, it is the will and aspiration to do so.

 

 

 

 

 

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Death

Death is one of those cards that draws fear in the hearts of the uninitiated. Hollywood hasn’t helped in this regard. Drawing the Death card in a reading is sure to result in a nasty accident in the very near future. In reality, the Death card is very rarely connected to actual, physical death.

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When the Man Comes Around

As an example, Death often shows up in relation to a pregnant woman. She will likely need some reassure that her and her baby will be just fine, again that stigma arises. But the actual meaning of the Death card in this situation, points to the death of a stage of life. Her carefree days of existence are soon to end.  Her world will revolve around another human being. Anyone who has had a child will understand the impact a birth has on your life, you are never the same again. So we are seeing a death of sorts, but it is the death of a certain period in her life.

Thinking about the impact of actual death, gives some insight into this card. Like most things in this life, death is a double-edged sword. For someone who is aged and suffering a painful terminal illness, death is a release. No longer will they suffer the pain and sadness of the process of dying. They are tired, had enough of the fight. They are ready to go.  Then the worst is over, they are at rest, at peace. A death is always a sad occasion, but in instances where the person is suffering, death is a reprieve. Not just for the one suffering, but for her loved ones that have cared for her and watched the one they love fade away. We attend the funeral, say our goodbyes, but afterwards it is time to celebrate the life they have lived, to be thankful for the good times we have had with them, to have had them in our lives and known them.

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Release

On the other end of this, are those that are taken much to soon. The death of a child is a horrific thing, something people never recover from. Parents with young children, murder victims. Here death is an awful thing, our deepest and darkest fears realized.

So what are the differences and similarities between the two? I think a big factor is lifespan. We will all die, that is inevitable. But there is a big difference between someone who passes away peacefully in bed at age 90, to a 10-year-old run down in the street. One has had their time, lived an entire life, the other life had barely even begun. We cannot celebrate a life that has hardly been lived, only feel a deep sadness for all they, and us, have missed out on.

The similarity is that we have no control over these events. Even when a death could have possibly been prevented, there is no going back. Death puts all the ‘could have been’s’ far from our reach.

This brings us to the big questions, ones we are unable to answer, in this life at least.  Why do these things happen? Why does one get to live a full lifespan, yet another doesn’t even take their first breath? Is there a purpose behind it all? A bigger universal picture? An afterlife? Questions we will never have the answers for, yet continue to seek.

Another common factor in death, is change. The one who has passed has definitely changed, transformed, but so have those that loved them. When you have lost someone, your life is irrevocably changed. A hole is left in your life and in your heart. Young or old, we will miss those we have lost for the rest of our days.

But every ending has a beginning. It has to have. Whether we are changed for the better or for the worse, is up to us. Someone who has lost a loved one can live this new stage of life in sadness or regret, or they can make something positive from their loss. Donating organs, raising funds for charity, raising awareness of dangers, perhaps preventing another family going through the same agony.

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Transformation

 The Death card is very similar to physical death here. This change is going to happen, be forced upon us, whether we like it or not. Sometimes we may be okay with this, sometimes we will fight it for all we are worth, but it will happen either way. It will inevitably bring with it a sense of loss and sadness, maybe even regret. But it is up to us where we go from here. We can take the opportunity to change our lives for the better, to make it a positive change, or hang on to a past that no longer serves us, maybe is not even there any more.

More Major Arcana?

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The World

The World is a card I have, until recently, found hard to grasp. The concept just seems so ‘big’. I think a lot of the problem was having nothing in my life to relate it to. I have never been to University, or even graduated high school, so no help there. When I drew The World recently, which I rarely do, I had no idea what it was trying to tell me, until I began to write.
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Stream of consciousness writing opens a lot of doors for me. Aspects I haven’t yet considered appear, along with new interpretations all together. The act of writing seems to draw my deepest, hidden thoughts out into the daylight. I keep a daily Tarot journal, and this has connected me to the Tarot much more than many hours of study could ever hope to achieve.

So, upon drawing The World, I began to write. It soon became apparent that this card was alluding to my Daughter. I have found that the Major Arcana often refer to people other than myself. The Minors are usually personal, referring to my own attitudes, actions and beliefs. Major cards are often other people, or ‘bigger picture’ stuff. The World, on this day, was in this category.

My Daughter has, just this year, began her tenth year of schooling. She is now a senior at school, a big milestone. This year will be full of such milestones for her. Turning sixteen is another huge step. The age at which we take our first tentative steps into adulthood. She will also obtain her learner drivers permit and reach the legal age of consent.

The big milestones of life - The World - Radiant Rider-Waite

The big milestones of life – The World – Radiant Rider-Waite

Where on earth did those sixteen years go? This year marks the point of leaving childhood behind. She is ready for the transition, straining at the starting gates of life, as every teenager that has come before her has done. But for me, as her Mum, it brings back many memories, all those milestones that have come before. Her first tooth, first word, first steps. It all seems so long ago now. It also makes me realize sixteen years of my own life have flown by in the haze of days. I can feel my own mortality breathing down my neck. It doesn’t seem that long ago that I was her age. Time just keeps on ticking by. Days into weeks into years into decades.

As I look to the past, it is also time to look to the future, all that is ahead of us. With only three years of schooling left, it pales in comparison to those sixteen years that have been. Not long now, till she sits her HSC, then it is onwards and forwards, into the big, wide world.

You can’t stop your children growing up, nor can you protect them from all that is bad in this world, the hurts, disappointments, grief and sadness. You just have to have confidence that you have raised them right, instilled in them all the right things that will make them good people. People able to make good decisions for themselves, to walk the path that is right for them, that makes them happy and others happy to be around them.

This big event, in both our lives, has given me a broader understanding of The World. The world keeps spinning, life goes on, there is nothing that will make it stop, or even pause a moment. Our babies become teenagers, become adults and likely go on to have babies of their own. The never-ending cycle of life. The World is so much bigger than the individual. It is life itself, what happens as each day passes and flows into the years. It is our babies growing up, leaving the nest. It is graduations, license tests, first loves, grandchildren. It is life slipping through our fingers.

The World in your hands. - Gothic Tarot by Anne Stokes

The World in your hands. – Gothic Tarot by Anne Stokes

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The Wheel

In the traditional Rider-Waite deck, Major Arcana number 10 is the Wheel of Fortune. In my Witches Tarot deck, it is the Wiccan themed, The Wheel of the Year. Both translate to roughly the same thing, the ups and downs of life.

Wheel of Fortune or Wheel of the Year.   The Witches Tarot

Wheel of Fortune or Wheel of the Year. The Witches Tarot

The Wheel of the Year is a central theme in Wiccan and Pagan beliefs. Seeing the year as a wheel, not something that begins and ends. The year doesn’t come to a close, it spins into a new cycle. I’m not going to go into great detail here, but this is based on the recurring life cycles of the God and Goddess. The Pagan God is born, or reborn, at Yule. He grows stronger throughout the following months, from a baby to a young man, at the feet of the Goddess, his Mother. The God is both son and lover. Don’t think of this in human terms, remember the God and Goddess are both forces of nature, Sun and Moon, Earth and Sky etc.

At Beltane, God and Goddess come together as lovers. He impregnates the Goddess with the baby God (effectively himself), and begins to ready himself to return to the Underworld. By Samhain, the God has died, sacrificed with the harvest. The Goddess becomes the wise old crone. Then, again, at Yule, the God is reborn as a baby and the Goddess too, reincarnates herself as a child. There are many stories and variations of this, but that is enough to get a grip on the understanding of this card. ( I am working on a set of posts directly about this, hopefully to be up soon).

We can see the cycles of youth, ageing, death and rebirth in this card. Everything in nature is recycled, the spiral dance of eternity. The waxing and waning of the Moon. The longer, yearly cycles of the Sun. The seasons. Even the cycles of plants and trees. Winter equates to death, old age, endings. In Winter, we are surrounded by, seemingly, death. Trees lose their leaves. The Sun loses its power, reaching its furthermost point from the earth. The ground is dead,infertile, bearing nothing. Yet, come Spring, all is renewed. Trees sprout buds, a new set of, soon to be, leaves. The Sun regains some warmth. We plant seeds and watch them burst forth from the ground, the womb of The Goddess. All is renewed, begins anew, life goes on.

The Wheel - So Below deck.

The Wheel – So Below deck. 

The cycles of nature can be equated to our daily lives as well. Life is great, running along seamlessly. Good job, nice home, plenty of money, lots of friends. Then something goes wrong and it all crumbles. Lose your job and there is a knock on effect. Losing your job is a good example, that can be devastating. Money isn’t everything, far from it, but it sure does help.

On the other hand, someone who has been down on their luck, might suddenly find they are on an upswing. Things start going right for a change. They score a good job, find somewhere to live, meet the right man or woman. All seemingly sparked by random events.

Life is a Wheel, constantly spinning.  Life is good, but it can also be very hard. But nothing lasts forever. We all have good and bad runs. The best we can do is be prepared for the hard times, the down-right bad times. I have been without before. I know what it is like to not have two cents to rub together, to not have a roof over your head. So my solution to the ups and downs, the curveballs life occasionally throws us, is to save. I love to sock away money for a rainy day, and it is a habit that has served me well over the years.

Another is friends, even family. Friends come and go. Not many are there for the long haul. I think as you get older you have fewer friends. But the ones you do have are worth their weight in gold. These are the ones that will stick by you no matter what. The ones you will grow old with, parted only by death. But these few are exceedingly rare. A great way to find out who these chosen few are, experience real hardship. The rest will vanish, leaving only the true. But sometime, this is just the Wheel spinning again. You meet someone and your paths converge. For a while you walk side by side, the best of mates. Then, imperceptibly, your paths split apart, separate.  This usually happens gradually. You still think fondly of each other, but slowly start to lose touch as your lives spin-off in their separate directions. Sadly, I have a few old friends like this. Life just seems to pull you apart and you both become busy with your respective lives. Occasionally I run into these mates of old, usually on the off-chance, and it is great to catch up. Usually a night well spent, drinking way too many beers. Vowing to keep in touch, you sadly part ways, but a lot of the time, it just isn’t to be, and you lose touch again. Well, unless you are lucky enough to run into each other another time. (That Wheel again).

We can also look at The Wheel of Fortune as karma. What you give out comes back to you threefold. Be a good person, the universe will return your kindness. Be ugly and wretched, expect to be miserable. I am a strong believer in karma. I even like to make little “karma investments”, doing random good deeds for my friends and strangers. If I see a chance where I can do some good, I jump at the chance. This seems to pay dividends, I am happily residing atop the Wheel at this time.

Wheel Of Fortune - Rider-Waite deck

Wheel Of Fortune – Rider-Waite deck

The wheel spins in many aspects of our lives. It is the ebb and flow of many things, luck, friendships, money. Life is never steady, nothing ever holds. This is also a reminder to cherish the good times, but also to cherish the moment. Usually the best memories we have, we were unaware of how profound that time was to be in the future, until we look back upon it. The good times of today are the cherished memories of tomorrow.

If you are presently stuck in a bad situation, or a run of bad luck, take heart. The Wheel of Fortune brings you promise that things will get better. To quote Tom Hanks in Castaway, ““So now I know what I have to do. I have to keep breathing. And tomorrow the sun will rise, and who knows what the tide will bring in.”

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The Chariot

The Chariot is a card of movement, fast and furious. It is also a card of victory. Of setting your sights on a goal and going for it, letting nothing get in your way.  Of having the determination and self-discipline to see the project through to a successful completion.

The Chariot is a gladiator, a warrior. He is brave, passionate, determined and fixated on winning the race at all costs. The horses he drives have a mind of their own, each wanting to go their separate ways. We see this in their opposing colors, one black, one white. This opposing force manifests as distractions, self-doubt and negative thinking.  Yet, our warrior drives them on, pulling them together in tandem. He does not use physical reins, just the pure force of will alone. He directs his desire only with the wand he holds, the wand of the The Magician, who is also about asserting skill and determination. He is well armored, ready for any and all of the trials that await him on his journey.  This is a card of will, determination and conviction. I also connect this card with Strength. The Chariot is about male power. Muscular, physical strength. Outer strength and pure brute force. Where the Strength card is that passive, quiet inner strength of women. 

The Chariot from the Witches Tarot

The Chariot from the Witches Tarot

The Chariot is also a card of contradiction, connected with both the sun and the moon, with day and with night. In the Rider deck, the chariot is pictured un-moving, yet this card is all about movement. In this way, it can be confusing. I think of this as a need to focus. To focus on the one thing you want to achieve and work for it. Scattering your energies at this time will get you nowhere. Your horses will pull off on their separate paths, leaving you going nowhere. To win this race and overcome the challenges and obstacles along the way, your attitude needs to be positive and focused to keep the momentum going.

The Chariot says you will be successful with your chosen goals, but you need to be determined and confident in your abilities. The warrior doesn’t question his skills, he enjoys putting them to use, knowing he will win out if he is bold, brave and unflinching.

Stamina should also be a focus. Can you keep up this cracking pace for as long as it takes? When you come up against tough competition? If you want it bad enough, then the answer is yes, you can. Just don’t expect it to be a walk in the park.

Negatively, The Chariot can signal being too focused, too set on the one goal, leaving other parts of your life untended. It may be important to be good at your job, but are you neglecting your family to do it? This could apply to many areas of life.

To me, The Chariot is about setting a challenge or goal for yourself and working towards it, unerringly, until you have accomplished it. This could be a creative project, a weight loss regime, a promotion at work. This card says, if you want it bad enough, you will be triumphant.

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What inspired me to learn the tarot?

I have had a set of tarot cards given to me years ago by a family member who had bought them and never took to it. I played around with them from time to time, doing basic ‘readings’ for my family and myself, by rote from the book. I didn’t use them very often, but kept them around, pulling them out again every so often.

It wasn’t until I came across an art deck on Ebay, Gothic Tarot by Anne Stokes, that I really got inspired. I loved this deck on site, but once I received them, I realized the Minor Arcana was not illustrated, just numbered with the symbols of each suit. I wanted to use this deck, and read it properly, not just from a book, so I set out to ‘learn’ the cards.

At first I thought this consisted of not much more than memorizing key words to each card. It soon became apparent that there was much more to it than I had a first thought.
It was then I embarked on a self-taught journey through the Tarot.

My inspiration was that Gothic Deck, but I have since come by another, the Witches’ Tarot, that is perfect for me, and it has become my go-to deck. But the Gothic Deck sits beside my bed in a beautiful, carved wooden box. It is very special to me, as it was the inspiration that set me on this path of learning and discovery.

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The Moon

Witches Tarot - XVIII The Moon

Witches Tarot – XVIII The Moon

Until yesterday, I wouldn’t have associated this card with death.  With the passing of my Aunt yesterday, I asked the cards for some guidance, and drew The Moon. Death would be the obvious card on first thought. But Death is so final. It is an end, nothing more.

The Moon though, in this deck is the Goddess Hecate.  She stands proud, ready, with her flaming torch to guide the departed soul through this shadowy landscape. This gave me so much comfort. To me it says there was someone there to meet her, to guide her soul on to where it needs to be. Hecate herself, or a departed family member? Your guess is as good as mine, but I tend to sway towards The Goddess. It is Hecate who leads the way, the way to those she loved, to lead her soul home.

Hecate is the Goddess of the waning moon. The moon and its cyclic nature speaks of reincarnation. The moon is waning, dark, but it will soon return to shine in its former glory.

Such a wonderful card for the death of a loved one. After meditating on this card last night, under the waning moon, I believe in my bones that there is a bigger picture. Death is not the end, it is only a transition, and Hecate will be there, with her hounds and torch burning bright, to lead the way.

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The Devil

Devil

The Devil is ‘one of those cards’.

It has the potential to strike fear in the hearts of those it chooses.

Along with The Tower and Death, it is one we wish to avoid.

I can see the positive in both the Tower and Death cards, the chance for renewal, change, a new phase of life.

I have lived through them both and emerged for the better.

But, for me, the card that I am truly fearful of is The Devil.

Not the Devil himself, I am not a christian, I don’t believe in a “devil”, but the Devil of our inner most wants and desires, that all-consuming “need”.

 

For me, The Devil is addiction.

Alcoholics and addicts know The Devil all too well.

It is that screaming need inside, the constant drive for oblivion, the more, more, more that drives every addict.

I know this, because I am one.

I am a drug addict.

Prescription pills.

Hillbilly Heroin.

Oxycontin.

Oxy is my poison and my love.

I can no longer do without it, and the thought of running out makes me sick with dread.

 

You probably judge me, condemn me from your ivory tower, safe from addictive substance.

But you are only an accident, a painful illness, an injury away from being in my shoes.

I did not choose this, I really had no choice.

 

I have chronic pain, unusually, in my knee.

For most it starts in their back, but I have always had bad knees.

As a child, a simple fall could plunge me into agony.

When I tore my ligaments as a young teenager, they were never properly repaired.

My knees have been an ongoing problem and source of pain and disability throughout my whole life.

 

Several years back, I had found a job I loved.

I was one year away from being a qualified Metal fabricator.

Unusual for a woman, but I’m not your ordinary woman.

I built rock crushers, heavy fabrication.

I loved it and I was good at it.

Then the knee pain started.

I was forced to take a year off work, stuck in bed, in constant pain.

You soon find out who your friends are in times like that, and I found I had no one.

If it wasn’t for my Husband, I know I wouldn’t have gotten through that dark time.

 

It took me years to accept that I would have to live with this pain, probably for the rest of my life.

The Doctors couldn’t help me, I was passed around between departments, round and round in circles, half mad with the constant daily struggle of living with strong pain.

It wasn’t till I came to the pain clinic that I found a Doctor that knew what was happening.

This non-stop, unexplained pain had ruined my life.

The solution? Drugs. Hard drugs.

I was not naive, I knew what that meant.

But the constant driving pain, I would sell my soul to be rid of, and that is what I did.

 

I don’t take massive amounts, but it is high.

I don’t abuse it, I stick to my prescribed limits.

Of course, the temptation is always there, but I’m well aware what that leads to.

An extra pill here and there is so easy to justify, I’m in pain!

But that is a very slippery slope.

 

It could be argued that the real devil, when it comes to addiction, is tolerance.

The constant need for more.

The body will always want more.

You have to understand that this kind of addiction, opiates, is so very physical.

It annoys me when I hear people flippantly speak of addiction, they have no idea.

That merciless pull.

The monster that rears up inside you, roaring for more.

So take a bit more, it’s all good.

But that never lasts, it’s not long before you need a bit more.

And on and on this will go.

It is truly chasing your tail, chasing the dragon.

The more you take the more you need.

When it comes to pain, that is a pretty horrifying concept, that one day, it won’t work.

That the doses get so high, but do nothing to dull the pain, or the physical need.

Taking amounts of drugs that would kill normal people and still being in pain, still feeling dope sick.

 

The other side to this is that pain feeds of this stuff.

Being so physical, the body wants those drugs.

It will manufacture pain to get them.

These are the awful facts you have to live with when you take this kind of medication.

Doctors give this stuff over so flippantly.

Some get caught up in this, totally unaware of what they are in for, which would be so much worse.

They don’t tell you the awful bare facts of addiction.

That some mornings you will wake raw, cramped, weak and flayed alive.

Laying there waiting, desperately, for the opiate to soak into your cells, your blood, your bones, Sick with longing, with need.

Your body constantly metering the level of medication in your system.

It is such a desperate, awful and lonely feeling.

 

I could never face coming off these drugs.

Though my life has been significantly reduced because of them.

All of this has left me with very little trust in people.

I still have problems with the pain, which can recur at any time.

I can’t leave the house without my days worth of pills.

Anything could happen.

I have lost all trust in people, in the universe.

 

My Witches Tarot depicts The Devil as The Shadow Side, and that fits.

The monster they cower from, is themselves.

But they also cower from the flash of light, illumination in the darkness.

Of course, they don’t want to get out, don’t want to help themselves.

They are happy down there in the darkness, with their monsters lurking around them.

They will always shy away from the light.

And that is the truth of it.

Shadow SideYou can see the fear on her face, but still she cowers from the light.

I don’t think it is the reaper figure they are afraid of, they have learnt to live with him, to love him, even.

They are now afraid of the light.

Afraid of illuminating their souls, of looking too closely at themselves and the wreckage of their lives.

This is what The Devil brings to my mind whenever I see it appear in a spread.

It is the only card in the deck I genuinely fear.

I have even heard of people removing it from their decks, and I understand that.

But I’d rather have some warning, because if warnings were ever to be heeded, it would be the warnings that this card gives.

Beware.

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0 The Fool

The following is my personal meditations on The Fool.

I use the term ‘she’, because that is how I identify with this archetype, but The Fool has both male and female elements.

So Below Tarot

So Below Tarot

Young, energetic, innocent, naive, full of wonder, excitement and a lust for the experiences of the world.

The Fool slings her pack over her shoulder and sets out to begin her journey, her loyal, faithful and trusty dog by her side.

She has a white rose tucked behind her ear, symbolizing her purity and innocence.

As she sets out on the road in search of experience, wisdom and all the world has to offer, she is bursting with excitement, her head full of the possibilities and adventures that lay ahead.

Whether she sets out to travel the world, or embark on a new path of learning, she is full of optimism and the spirit of adventure.

She is ready and willing to experience all that life has to offer.

She is young, free, wild, and rebellious.

Even a little revolutionary, she is as ready to leave her mark on and change the world, as much as she is eager to explore it.

She is random and intuitive, following only her heart.

She is full of promise and potential, with all life’s options laid out ahead of her.

She can do anything, be anything, her heart desires.

Every day is a new adventure, to be lived to its fullest potential.

She sets out secure in the mindset that ‘everything will be fine’.

She puts her trust in the universe as she takes her first steps out onto the open road.

The Sun shines down upon her, a symbol of her joy, happiness and the beginning of her journey.

0 Fool

In her naiveté, she sees not the possible dangers that may lay ahead.

Oblivious to all that could potentially do her harm.

The snake in the grass, the stranger in the dark, the treacherous and steep cliff edge, are all overlooked in her youthful inexperience and trust.

At times, she unwittingly flirts with danger, dances right along the edge of the precipice.

Yet she sees no danger, feels no fear, absorbed as she is in her dreams, hopes and plans for the road ahead.

Captivated by the beauty that surrounds her, blind to any inherent threat.

 

Her lone protector, her little dog, watches out for her as best he can.

He barks a warning, nips at her heels, hurries her back from the ledge.

Her furry little comrade keeps her safe, he also provides her company.

He is her only attendant on this long and sometimes perilous journey.

He represents her instinct, her intuition, that little voice that pipes up inside, that says there is danger afoot.

That something is amiss.

At times she will heed that little inner voice, that feeling that something is wrong.

At other times she will ignore it and carry on her way.

She will learn the hard way, to heed her intuitive voice.

Anne Stokes Tarot

Anne Stokes Tarot

The steep and rugged mountain range behind The Fool symbolizes pilgrimages and spiritual paths.

Intrinsically dangerous and treacherous, yet so very rewarding when, if, we reach the summit.

Mountains are also a metaphor for being close to the Gods.

In Greek mythology, Mount Olympus was the home of the Gods and Goddesses.

 

The Fool carries all her worldly belongings in a cloth tied to a staff.

She has with her all she will need for her journey.

What is in that bag?

The four elements.

The raw, undefined power of each suit.

The Aces.

At this stage of her journey, I don’t think she knows how to use these supplies, or even what purpose these life skills will serve.

But she does know, when the time comes, she will acquire the guidance and wisdom to be able to put these items to good use.

0 Initiate

The Fool is the only Tarot card that is not numbered.

This card is zero, infinity, unending.

We could slot this card in anywhere among the Tarot.

The essence of The Fool is in every card of the deck.

Each archetype is a teacher, a guide or a lesson she must learn.

Zero is infinite, never-ending, a loop, signifying re-incarnation and the infinite nature of our souls.

 

As The Fool takes the first steps of her spiritual development, there is an inkling in her soul, a knowing.

A sense that she has been here before, that she already holds, deep within, the answers that she seeks.

She only needs to be reminded, to re-discover her soul.

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