2023: Chinese Year of the Black Water Rabbit…

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In 2023 we leave the year of the Black Water Tiger and enter the Chinese Year of the Rabbit. This is a year of the black rabbit. Black represents the element of water in Chinese astrology. The Year of the Rabbit, as with all the animal signs in the Chinese zodiac, comes round once every twelve years. But then we also have the rotation of the four elements in the Chinese zodiac: Earth, Water, Wood and Metal. The last year of the Water Rabbit was 1963.

2023 Chinese New Year Day is on Sunday, 22 January 2023 and is widely announced as the start of the new Rabbit year. However there is a distinction to be made between New Year and the first day of the New Zodiac Year which in Chinese astrology is based on the lunar calendar.

Technically speaking, the first day of the 2023 Chinese Astrological Year is actually 4 February or the previous day depending on the lunar calendar in any given year.

This date marks Li Chun (立春), the Beginning of Spring.

This means that for a baby born before 4 February 2023, the baby’s Chinese Zodiac sign is still technically the Water Tiger, and not the Water Rabbit. Just be aware, the dates vary depending on the date of the February new moon. If your birthday is in February you need to check the dates in February for that particular year.

You are a Rabbit if you were born in the following years: 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999, and 2011

In the astrology of Vietnam the Rabbit is replaced with the Cat, and in Malay astrology, the Rabbit is represented instead by a mouse-deer.

The Year of the Black (Water) Rabbit ends 9 February 2024 when we will enter a new Wood Dragon year. 

The rabbit is traditionally regarded as one of the happiest Chinese zodiac signs. People born in a Rabbit year are known for their extreme patience, and for reliability, kindness, loyalty and also elegance and a certain air of mystery. People born in a year of the Rabbit are quick-witted, sociable, careful and inventive – even ingenious. But they are watchful- cautious just as in Nature the real Rabbit is a prey animal. The rabbit runs. But nothing is ever quite so simple or one dimensional, and the rabbit will also fight. A rabbit will kick or box ….allow me to share an old family story.

Back in the sixties, my parents had a buck rabbit, Arnab, who once offended a Syrian ambassador. His name, Arnab was Arabic for rabbit. We had friends from Damascus and Palestine who lectured in Arabic Studies at the Uni of Durham. Arnab got his name when Hanan and Hussein came round for drinks one night (they were Muslim, officially but they drank alcohol- and they celebrated Christmas too) and Hanan said, ‘oh, you have an ARNAB??’

They were not keen on rabbits- or rodents, ‘oh, Margaret (this to my mother) You have a filthy arnab!”

Cue my mother’s unrepentant screams of laughter.

One day Hussein asked my mother to host a visiting guest to the Department of Arabic Studies at Durham University while he visited Hanan who was in hospital.

This guest was a VIP, a visiting ambassador from Syria, a certain Judge Hoshea (if I have the spelling correct.) This gentleman duly arrived at my mothers house for afternoon tea, and was seated in an armchair by the gas fire, which on this chilly day in early spring was switched on, not least for the greater comfort of a guest from warmer climes.

While my mother was busying herself in the kitchen, Arnab, who had the run of the place- my mother says she should have forestalled this but she had thought Arnab was asleep in his favourite den in the airing cupboard upstairs- came loping down the stairs and into the sitting room.

Arnab had an ongoing feud with the gas fire. Apparently, he had burned his paw on it one time. Now, when he came in and found it switched on, he would establish his dominance and also exact revenge by pissing on it. Possibly he was also trying to put the fire out, who knows. A tiny puff of steam would rise, the hotter the fire, the bigger the puff of steam but this pissing competition, the filthy Arnab would always win, the steam whiffing ever so slightly of a cabbage-like smell.

Mother comes in with the tray, bone china cups and saucers, a dainty plate of cakes and notes the whiff of cabbage and the tiny whiff of steam coming off the fireplace.

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Arnab has the guest at bay, loping round the feet, the elegant shoes of the distinguished guest.

Judge Hoshea is sitting rigidly, clutching the arms of the chair, his face like stone. But impassively correct, exquisitely courteous, he sips his tea, saying not a word as Arnab is unceremoniously shooed from the room and shut out.

He has the most beautiful manners. But it doesn’t need saying. He has now understood and is still processing this terrible truth- horrors- he is truly among the barbarians.

The point of this story is to address that non confrontational Rabbit archetype, and somewhat round out the picture.

A rabbit may indeed be aggressive, at least the buck/jack.

However the rabbit is not usually confrontational, and this may prove welcome news in 2023 in geo-politics. This year is expected to be a little quieter overall than 2022, the year of the Water Tiger which represents outward, expansive – and maritime Yang energy.

The Rabbit is creative. Spring is rime Rabbit power season. March, the month of the Rabbit in the year of the Rabbit is therefore looking like the key window in 2023 for launching new jobs, plans, projects and enterprises.

China’s President Xi has recently been ramping up aggression in Taiwanese air space, but he is being very careful, and he has Covid to contend with and all the attendant economic implications looking likely at least until March, the end of the first quarter of 2023.

The Mars in Cancer transit (war at sea?) could, though not necessarily, be detecting maritime developments or tensions late March-late May-

This could be detecting developments in the Black Sea.

President Erdogan, a Pisces native, turning up in the cards as the King of Cups, will most assuredly not want to see Russia succeed in taking the Ukrainian port of Odessa. This would be a challenge to Turkey’s maritime hegemony in the Black Sea. But President Erdogan does not want to fall out with Moscow,one of Turkey’s key trading partners, and has a tricky balancing act, with a general election coming up June 2023.

When I look at what if any single factor may affect when/how this war ends, I draw The King of Cups reversed. There are two figures here who fit this descriptor; the mutable Piscean ‘water king’ Erdogan-and the fixed Scorpionic ‘water king’ President Biden, and we don’t need cards to know that.

All the same. Readers can only work with the cards they get, or do not get.

Smith Waite/Rider-Waite Tarot

For the rest of us in general, the rabbit is at its prime in the spring, saying March-April 2023 is the optimal time for new opportunities. This is the time to make a push and to persist. “The early bird catches the worm”.

The diplomatic Rabbit again, brings hope of a ceasefire in Ukraine in 2023, or negotiations just possibly late in March-late April, and an easing of tensions in other areas, while astrologers in India are predicting a boom year of economic growth for India.

The last Rabbit year, 2011, signified positive news for the economy after the crash of 2008. 2011 brought a curbing of inflation. But the last Water Rabbit year was in 1963. What events or themes of 1963 may be coming round again then, this year, echoed, recycled or followed up in this new chapter in the Zodiac book of The Rabbit?

The cycles of history do not repeat, but they have a strong tendency to echo.

In the Water Rabbit Year of 1963

  • French president Charles de Gaulle prevents Great Britain’s entry into the Common Market.
  • Nuclear test ban treaty is signed by the U.S., Great Britain, and USSR.
  • Buddhist-led military group overthrows the government of South Vietnam.
  • Kenya becomes an independent republic.
  • Assassination of John F. Kennedy (by LBJ? That is the rumour. Strictly a rumour)

Inventions/Technology

-Instant coffee (freeze dried and generally made with Robusta beans, rather than the highly aromatic Arabica beans traditionally used in coffee.)

-Dr Who and the Daleks. My father comforted us that they could not climb stairs. But then, horrors. They learned to levitate.

-The Smiley Face icon/emoji

-The Computer Mouse and Hypertext, American inventor Douglas Engelbart

-The modern Hang-glider, the flexible wing airfoil concept

-The Lava Lamp, invention by British inventor David George Smith commissioned by British entrepreneur Edward Craven Walker, founder of Lighting Company Mathmos in Poole, Dorset.

-And last but certainly not least, in the field of astrophysics came the discovery of the cosmic microwave background-detected via a previously unexplained background noise via radio signal signifying a low level of radiation throughout the known universe that was interpreted as proof of The Big Bang Theory, in which the Universe is seen as rapidly expanding. More about this discovery HERE

Lucky colours in a Rabbit year

Considered especially lucky in a Rabbit year: green, blue, black, beige, white, and silver, gold.

In western cultures too, the rabbit is imbued with symbolism and superstition. Rabbits represent fertility, but the ancient Europeans also held rabbits numinous and sacred -mysterious creatures of the underworld, because they spent so much time underground. 

Wishing for the best that the Rabbit can bring to you in 2023.

Till next time 🙂

In The Glass Darkly, Tarot, China and Taiwan 2023

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All readings are to be regarded as for entertainment and personal interest only.

The history of Taiwan is complex. Wiki History of Taiwan

Given the long rumbling tensions, and in the wake of recent further air incursions by China into Taiwanese air space, what does the Tarot and what does cartomancy with playing cards detect in respect of the likeliness of an attempted land invasion by China of Taiwan, 2023, 2024 and 2025?

The cards shown below are from The Gilded Tarot Royale, author Barbara Moore, illustrator Ciro Marchetti.

Tweeted 10 January

#Tarot China. Invasion of #Taiwan 2023, 2024, 2025? CARDS The Hanged Man, Ace Swords REV, 6 Cups. Air ‘threat’-Fighter jets, yes. Likelihood of attempted land invasion LOW. Pres Xi doesn’t NEED to. Other finance/tech strategies already highly effective+Covid/economy/US/Ukraine.

Card One: The Hanging Man

The Hanged Man steps back, hangs back, takes time to think, weighs the cost. President Xi may personally yearn to make a decisive move, but deduces it is not a logical move at this time, and perhaps, while desirable, the cost may outweigh any future benefits, and is it even necessary?

Astrologically The Hanging Man or Hanged Man depending on the deck corresponds with the planet Neptune, watery, fathomless-lacking boundaries. It deals in dreams. The planetary rulers of the water sign Pisces are fiery Mars, its traditional ruler, but Neptune is its modern ruler. Where is the limit of our domain?

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The Hanging Man does not indicate readiness for action. But should hostilities commence in the Strait of Taiwan in 2023, then a couple of timings to watch out could be during Pisces. Another window to watch could be during the transit of Mars in Cancer.

This starts right at the end of Pisces season, 25 March 2023-20 May 2023. Why might this be significant in real life events? Mars in Cancer symbolically translates as Mars/initiation/war/action) in Cancer/sea/early summer.

This may also refer to events in the Black Sea. ‘Fire at Sea.’

Card 2: The Ace of Swords reversed

The Ace of Swords is a card of decision, decisive action- or attack. This is an air suit card suitable to describe aircraft or aerial invasion or bombardment. It is also a card of stress, strife and issues to do with authority and control, as well as Information technology.

Drawn reversed, as it has been here, it appears to be reflecting the fact that President Xi has a lot on his plate at this time. Not least covid, civil unrest and Putin’s invasion of Ukraine which seems to be more of a nuisance for Xi than a green light to make any further moves on Taiwan.

In addition, while Europe has not so far put on a measured, carefully calibrated, costly but still, not particularly impressive show of unity or strength in supporting Ukraine against Putin’s total war- neither has the US- President Xi-despite his extensive intelligence networks- seems unsure as to the likely strength of military response from the US should China escalate aggression against Taiwan. Has the US really not got more Patriot missile systems to spare for Ukraine? Or is it doling them out sparingly, measured just sufficiently so as to prevent a Russian takeover in Ukraine, forcing Putin to expend evermore resources, while keeping its powder dry with a weather eye on China?

The Ace Swords, drawn in the central position, clearly reflects the stakes, and is confirming the issue under discussion. If we wre looking at the Ace Swords in the third, future position, the Tarot would be flagging up a possible yes answer, especially if it had been drawn upright.

Card 3: The Six of Cups

This is generally a peaceable card, but it does suggest that President Xi looks at Taiwan with a kind of nostalgia. That he genuinely believes it is a part of China, and is an asset that should come within China’s direct control. But he does not need to take this risk. China is consolidating its sphere of influence hegemony through ‘soft strategies,’ makings itself ‘local’ pretty much everywhere. Quietly. Barely noticed. The number 6 is a number of health, service, community and heritage.

This card of childhood seems to reflect an awareness of the youngest generation. China seems to be planning for a future in which there are fewer ‘young people.’

The population of China has more than doubled since the 1950s. The country was the first in the world to hit one billion people in 1980.

However, in 1979, in an attempt to control the burgeoning population, the infamous one-child policy was introduced, putting controls on how many children Chinese citizens could have.

While the government eventually recognized the negative implications of this policy, it appeared to be too little, too late. The two-child policy was introduced in 2016, but it has not yet reversed the current slowdown in population growth.

Nonetheless. The population of China currently stands c 1.44 billion, more than the populations of the US, Canada, South America, Europe, Australia, New Zealand-and then some. And population growth is slowing in these other regions. Read more HERE

The Six of Cups is usually anything but a warlike card. It has all the ease of a long summer afternoon.

However, it may be worth noting, the beautiful Six of Cups corresponds with the elemental quality of fixed water, and with the second decan of Scorpio 2-11 November. Mighty Scorpio, ruled by Mars and Pluto. The major cards that correlate with this minor card are The Sun and Death. The lower the sun, the longer the shadow, however golden the sunset.

This Sun card connection prompts me to observe that China, in watching Taiwan, does not forget its history with Japan. The United Kingdom, this day, has signed an historic Defence agreement with Japan, also a former ruler in Taiwan.

Read more HERE.

Cartomancy

The playing cards below represent three spreads -three ‘Lines of Five’. The reader is asking, what is the likelihood of China invading Taiwan in 2023, 2024 and 2025?

The reader notes the overall balance of the red suits/black suit cards, then notes the order of the cards, paying particular attention to the central card and the final/prediction card, and then considers the individual card meanings.

A dominance of red suit cards generally indicate a yes answer. A dominance of black suit cards generally indicates a no answer. Why is that? How does that work? Well, it works on self-programming. The reader establishes the ‘code’, telling ourselves that this is the drill, these are the meanings, this is how we’re doing it. With time and practice-or even right away, this instruction to the self starts to function as an inner algorithm.

Row 1 -2023

5 Diamonds/7 Clubs/8 Clubs/ Jack Clubs/ 6 Spades

China’s current priority, as it is being shown here is Business. The economy. This is shown by the central card,the 8 of Clubs. It’s doing well and will only do better in the near future, despite the problems of covid. Why does it seem to get better in 2023? The 98 of Clubs is followed by the Jack of Clubs. NEW business. The 6 Spades signifies progress, recovery fro covid, economic recovery, and boosts in tech and space tech later in 2023. The 6 Spades correlates with the last decan of Aquarius. China has plenty else to be getting on with.

1 red suit (yes) card. 4 black suit (no) cards.

Likelihood of invasion of Taiwan detected as LOW.

Row 2 -2024

9 Diamonds/King Clubs/8 Spades/King Hearts/7 Spades

There are 2 King cards in this row. Do they represent Xi himself? The King of Business and Government is looking back at the 9 Diamond of 2023 with a degree of satisfaction. He has chalked up some economic success despite the challenges of covid. But then he hits a rock. Maybe it is a personal health issue. The 8 Spades can mean a hospital. Or maybe it is the public health bill in the aftermath of covid and now it is coming home to roost. Unless, God forbid, it is yet another covid lock-down in 2024.

The final card in the row, the 7 Spades, signifies temptation,frustration,surveillance, and sometimes espionage.

The 7 Spades is also the card that talks about diplomacy and national security. China may find during 2024 that there is a push back from other countries, who have become increasingly anxious that they have allowed China to invest too great a stake in their own national infrastructure.

2 red suit (yes) cards, 3 black suit (no) cards. Likelihood of Taiwan invasion detected as unlikely but possible. That 7 Spades could be provocative. Twitchy.

Row 3- 2025

8 Diamonds, 2 Clubs, 3 Swords,7 Diamonds, 6 Hearts

The first card on this row, the 8 Diamonds denotes power, and a greater economic and social stability. China is rising. But will it be the same China we know right now? The central card, the 3 Spades denotes separation, loss, departure, sometimes death, suggesting that China may see a new leader before the end of 2025.

The second card, the 2 Clubs says it can unify business with Taiwan and in time, this will become a form of mutual governance.

This is the row with the most red suit cards. 3 red suit (yes) cards 2 black suit (no) cards. Likelihood of invasion of Taiwan detected as not highly likely, but somewhat more likely than in either 2023 or 2024.

What cards would most clearly indicate an outright military conflict? I am looking at the central card and also the last card on each of these 3 rows, to see the Ace Spades, Ace Wands, 2 Spades, 10 Spades or even The Joker drawn in either of these positions. None of these have appeared. The closes we’ve come is with the 3 Spades drawn in 2025.

None of which is to say there will be no invasion of Taiwan now or ever. But the signs are not there, indicative that China is ready or prepared to mount such an effort, and nor may it feel the need to, based on the way it sees the wheel turning. And what is its actual military capacity, actually, at this time? Even if it not averse to being seen to flex its muscles in a public invasion of Taiwan’s airspace.

Back soon.

Till next time.

Halloween and ‘Alfablot’-‘Sacrifice to the Elves’

Halloween 2022….Rune style reading

True Tarot Tales

Public Domain

What we know of Norse Mythology comes largely from the Eddas, two collections of writings from assorted anonymous writers, dating around 1250 CE.

All Hallows Eve, Halloween or Samhain is a Gaelic custom, not Norse. The Norse peoples did mark this time of year, although in a different way, with Álfablót – the Elf Ritual.

Elves were associated with burial mounds (also known as barrows) as it was believed that they lived in or around them, and more than this, elves were associated with the souls of the dead, rather than fairies in the other sense of the word, as a supernatural entity that was never human.

Rakni’s burial mound, Noway, Public Domain

It is the largest burial mound in Scandinavia, 77 metres in diameter and over 15 metres in height. There are a number of stories associated with it, one associated with a roving sea-King Raki or…

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Tarot and The Scorpio Eclipse Season

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Scorpio is the season of Halloween, when the sap drops, the leaves fall. The year is dying in front of us. Scorpio in the Tarot is represented by the Death card, and this is the reason why.

Next stop, the winter solstice.

This autumn/fall’s eclipse season means the partial solar eclipse, New Moon in Scorpio 25 October 2022, and a lunar eclipse at the Full Moon in Taurus, 8 November 2022.

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Eclipses have been viewed as omens or portents since ancient Mesopotamia, and doubtless, long before that.

They announce momentous changes, unfolding over the next two weeks-six months.

What could this eclipse season mean in terms of real life events over the next six months?

The Astronomy

Like the Full Moon, a New Moon happens at a particular point when the sun and moon have the same ecliptic longitude and this can be measured down to the exact second that it happens.

On the day of the New Moon we don’t see the moon. It is too close to the sun, rising and setting with the sun. The night sky is darker, making the New Moon an ideal time of the month to see other celestial objects more clearly.

A solar eclipse is seen when the Moon passes between Earth and the Sun, blocking Earth’s view of the Sun, totally or partially. This latest one 25 October blocked our view of the sun by about 25%.

A lunar eclipse is seen when the Moon moves into the Earth’s shadow.  This can occur only when the Sun, Earth, and Moon are exactly or very closely aligned and the Earth is in between the other two, which only happens on the night of a full moon. 

The Astrology

23 October we entered the zodiac sign Scorpio, named after the constellation of Scorpius with its alpha star, the Heart of the Scorpion, red Antares, the rival of Mars/Ares.

October’s New Moon on the 25th was also a partial solar eclipse in sun Scorpio.

In astrological terms, this signified the advent of an intense period, opening new doors and bringing fated changes into our lives.

This is not a time for making big decisions or taking risks with our wealth, health and personal relationships. This New Moon eclipse can come with a sting in its tail…taking that chance or forcing that situation, pushing that envelope might look OK right now…

The sting comes later.

Astrology advises us to be especially careful with financial, land and property dealings around the time of this eclipse, and for the following couple of weeks.

This Scorpio sun eclipse will be followed by a Taurus lunar eclipse. The two will work together in their effects- which will be to do with our security, finances, food and comfort in a deeply unsettled world where aspects of the past have been coming round again, including the ghosts of the world wars.

Eclipses announce turning points. Their effects are deep, not felt at once but over a longer period. This October, that means the next two weeks until the following lunar eclipse in Taurus 8 November, or over the next six months until the next solar eclipse in Aries, 20 April 2023.

But other planetary factors are also in play during the rest of October and November.

The Saturn-Uranus square

This is a big feature in astrology during the past two years and only becomes more influential throughout the rest of October and November into December.  We’ve been living with Saturn square Uranus for nearly two years, with respite when the planets have separated due to retrogrades.

This big, difficult planetary square goes exact this month so will be at its most intense from now and through November, when the square starts to separate in December 2022. There will likely be a cooling off, then, however temporary, of the conflict in Ukraine.

The Saturn square Uranus influence is challenging, full of contradictions. On the one hand there is history, tradition, duty and order. On the other, there is innovation in technology, but also rebellion and chaos.

On a collective level, this means continuing tensions, disruption and instability on the world stage, on our streets and in our personal lives, continuing well into November at least. Human society in general is in a strange, disordered place, almost hysterical, like ants running about all over the place, not quite knowing what they’re meant to be doing.

This is something that has been observed to happen from time to time in human history, particularly during the first decades of a new millennium. It will start to pass off again. Some astrologers suggest in 2026. Others think sooner. But big changes are happening. The world is reordering its axes of power and influence in a new Aquarian high tech era. This is a time for resilience and robustness on the one hand, and circumspection on the other in counterbalance the shocking speed of change. I remember in 1990, telling students about this new ‘thing’ that was coming- the ‘Information Super Highway’. But we didn’t know what it looked like yet.

It was the Internet.

Mars stations retrograde in Gemini 

Fiery action planet Mars has been transiting airy Gemini since 22 August but it goes retrograde 30 October.

This may turn up the heat in trade and communications including politics. This will affect the city of London which is ruled by Gemini.

A few short days ago it meant I was wondering, could Liz Truss survive as Prime Minister beyond this date?

As it turned out, Liz Truss could not survive as PM even until this date, with another three days still to go.

(See my previous blog where we looked at the cards surrounding the contest for the new Prime Minister of the UK. https://truetarottales.com/2022/10/24/the-contest-for-the-new-pm/  )

This eclipse season is going to be a bumpy ride. Fasten your seat-belt, avoid making life changing decisions, and especially avoid confrontation until the timing is more favourable after 8 November- and delay it longer if you can. 

We also need to avoid gossip. Gemini is a chatterbox, but when it is in Mars retrograde, this isn’t friendly chatter and misunderstandings will easily arise. Things may not be what they seem. Switch off the television and social media if it all gets too much. Very likely, it will.

The Tarot 

Author’s own image, The Legacy of the Divine Tarot, Ciro Marchetti

The Water Element

Three out of five cards are water element cards, Cups card, dominating the mood and feel for the period between now and mid-November.  (The Hanged Man, King of Cups and Two of Cups drawn reversed.)

The court card designating Scorpio in particular is The King of Cups, though he will also stand for a Pisces or Cancer subject, usually male, though not necessarily.

From The Illuminati Tarot

Scorpio is a water sign and looks set to deliver according to its deep and secretive cosmic personality. The water element was the key theme in the predictions for 2022 in general as published here at Ask Astrology in January.  2022 has been a tsunami of challenges. These are mysterious, dangerous and unstable times for the whole world.

We also predicted a more than usually high risk of extreme flooding for 2022.

Sadly, the reality has meant catastrophic flooding in Pakistan, and also in Australia, in Victoria, New South Wales and Tasmania only six months after the disastrous east coast flooding in March and April.

The Hanged Man

In general terms this card represents a time of withdrawal, of solitude and introspection. It can be indicating that we are looking at a situation the wrong way round. Maybe we need to take another look and think again. Sometimes we realize that something isn’t working like it used to. It hasn’t been working for some time now but we don’t see a way to fix it. Perhaps it can’t be fixed. Then we can either accept it for what it is and make the best of it. Or we let it go. Surrender it. The Hanged Man is doing some deep thinking.

The reader has come to associate this tarot card with President Zelensky in particular when looking at world events. Astrologically The Hanged Man corresponds with the zodiac sign of Pisces. I am very concerned for him, though here comes better news to offset the bad news.  Jupiter, the giant planet of opportunity is re-entering Pisces 28 October 2022, moving retrograde until it turns direct on 23 November 2022. It then goes direct, moving forward in Pisces until it heads into Aries on 20 December, 2022.

What does this mean in practical terms?

Jupiter is known as the Greater Benefic. Jupiter can be a bully, king of the gods, but it is happy in Pisces, even when retrograde.

President Zelenskyy is an Aquarius subject, an air sign king, and he has been well served by an ability to emotionally detach himself during critical decision making in moments of crisis. This does not mean he does not care. Far from it. But this is what has made him such an effective leader, but this detachment may fail him from time to time, when dealing with an adversary who is operating at a primeval level, caring nothing for the damage he entirely deliberately inflicts on non combatant civilians. This new Pisces season, may be something of a personal struggle for President Zelenskyy on this long haul.

President Biden is a Scorpio subject, with mid term elections falling on the lunar eclipse and a potential money nemesis in Taurus.

Putin has Scorpio rising. The implications of this, I do not find welcome, though the prospect of an eclipse now kicking in over the next six months would be a massive relief to a very great many people who just want to go home and live their lives.

This influence is bold and expansive, opening new doors. This is a powerfully positive aspect for growth and new opportunities in any area of life, especially if there was something that we started back in May 2022.  It could finally start to move forward between now and Christmas.

The King of Cups

This court card is representing the zodiac sign of Scorpio itself, sitting centrally in the reading. This is a curious coincidence, given the focus of this reading which is the eclipse in Scorpio, but then again, that is just typical of the Tarot.

UPDATE 2/112022

Curiously, this card could stand for President Erdogan of Turkey. He is a Pisces subject, a water sign king. This figure is deep. He isn’t particularly talkative but he can be relied on for sound, calm advice.

In this instance, his personal intervention has helped restart grain shipments from Odesa which Russia had blockaded again, although Russia has still attacked a civilian cargo ship and killed two of its crew.

In a personal reading he will often represent a father, husband or mentor.  

Additionally, the King of Cups followed by the watery Two of Cups reversed shows that Scorpio subject President Biden is in for a tough mid-term election 8 November and the Democrat Party may be weakened in Congress.

The Two of Cups

In Ukraine we had a temporary pause, de-escalation and standoff- (The Hanged Man) But only temporary.

What will be the final outcome? What seems likely is that Russia will escalate again, but end up with far less than Putin was aiming at he started this war. But that Hanged Man can’t discount the possibility that Russia may still end up getting more than simple justice says it should. 

When? The Hanged Man suggests that there could be an end to the Russian attacks on its neighbour 2023- late February-late March, but this does not mean the end of the consequences, which will be politically long lasting and far reaching.

The Two of Pentacles could mean a ceasefire in late December. This card correlates with the first decan of the zodiac sign of Capricorn, approx 21 -31 December. This may be due simply to weather conditions rather than an attempt at resolution.

These are indisputably dangerous times, this second half of October month especially, although the cards have not shown a nuclear catastrophe.

resident Putin is subject to at least one rather significant check on his freedom of action in the shape of the newly reelected President Xi.

The Two of Cups reversed

This card correlates with the first decan of the zodiac sign of Scorpio= the first ten days of Scorpio.

This card of diplomacy is drawn reversed, reflecting the fact that President Zelensky is not ready to engage in talks with Russia, though President Putin has recently made a few noises to the effect he might be open to talks via third party mediation.

The cards weakly signal a small range of possibilities as to when there will be a ceasefire, including just before Christmas 2022, decans 2 and 3 of Capricorn, then into Aquarius 2023 and Pisces into Aries, by or before March-April 2023.

But a whole new escalation of crisis seems likely meantime, and this could come any time during this eclipse window between now and 8 November, or then again, in late December.

For us personally, what can be achieved between now and mid- November? Deep changes are happening now, whether these are personal or professional. The Hanged Man and the King of Cups are visionary cards. This might not be the time to act on them.

But something is stirring, and when the time is right, big changes will be happening, some driven by circumstances beyond our personal control but others, definitely created by us.

So much for the water cards. New readers will often discuss the water cards in terms of how lovely they are, and healing, and sensitive, beautiful, ‘spiritual’ and emotional. And they can be. But great emotions will just as readily wreak great turmoil. There are floods. There are storms at sea. Sometimes tsunamis.

The fixed water sign that is the Scorpion of the zodiac is ruled by Mars and Antares. It doesn’t freeze. It may steam. It may gently simmer. But it may scald. It may boil.

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Three of Wands Reversed

This is fiery Mars energy. The Three of Wands is great news for global business or launching an enterprise, but the card has been drawn reversed. There could be snags or delays with exports, imports and deliveries, whether we are sending them or expecting to receive them. If we’re going off on foreign travels we had better treble check every single travel document and take out comprehensive insurance cover.

Any renewal of escalation in Russia’s aerial attacks against civilians in Ukraine would seem most likely to happen around this time, 23-30 October and the following few days, but this does not mean that it WILL happen.

Tarot shows the human weather conditions, but no reader can claim to see ‘the future.’

What the cards do is detect, reflect and project past, present and possible future events and the reasons for them, glimpsing hints of the most and least likely possibilities.

Two of Pentacles reversed.

This card is about juggling finances and options and is talking about the continuing global economic situation which seems likely to continue more volatile than usual until Christmas (Capricorn).

Personal Hints

The Hanged Man

This card requires us to recognize that we are not in control of some situations. There are times we just need to go with the flow. This is a time to watch, wait and reflect. This is not a time to push an issue. If in doubt, as always, it is probably wisest to do nothing.

The Two of Coins reversed

We probably need to take things a bit easier this month. We’re rushing about juggling time, energy and finances. We are spreading ourselves too thin, and need to reconsider our priorities. This also means looking for where there is money wastage e.g.; with standing orders and subscriptions we may have forgotten that we even had, looking for easy ways to reduce financial wastage and tighten the budget.

The King of Cups

This king is the court card associated with the zodiac sign of Scorpio but more generally stands for any mature man born under one of the water signs, Pisces Cancer or Scorpio. Maturity demands that we learn to exercise our best judgement and self-control even when feelings are running high. That’s the best policy this eclipse season- but there is plenty of scope for enjoyment with the King of Cups. When he represents a life partner or a potential new partner, he is deep, devoted- and passionate.

The Three of Wands reversed

This eclipse is not the time to launch-well, anything really. A work or business plan or project may require more planning and research before it’s ready to go, or there could be tensions within a small group or a team at this time.

Easy does it. When this card is drawn the right way up, it’s time to go for it. But right now, we need a bit of a rest. Scale back. Reschedule. Turn the volume down. Nothing constructive is likely to be achieved at this time by rushing.

The Two of Cups reversed

This card appears to be detecting the upcoming Venus in Scorpio transit, 23 October and it’s talking about relationships and money for the next six months. The Two of Cups is about love relationships and friendships. Scorpio is about passion. The card has been drawn reversed so things could go either way, or both ways. On the plus side, we could be in for a truly wonderful time with our loved one, or we could meet someone we are very attracted to. On the other hand, the intensity might be welcome or it might not.

Admirers can be obsessive when Venus is in Scorpio, whether we feel the same way or not.  Beware unwanted admirers and be careful how much information you share with other people.

When it comes to existing relationships, the Two of Cups says Venus in Scorpio can bring power struggles and money concerns out into the open. How money is spent or invested is about to become an intense point of focus in partnerships where financial resources are shared.

Venus in Scorpio is powerful stuff. Allure, sexual desire, lust for power or wealth. Secrets.

This is looking like an especially profound and powerful eclipse season for us, Halloween 2022

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When will there be an end to the war in Ukraine? The Crow caws. The Hanged Man speaks

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No-one knows the answer to this question. I certainly don’t. But what does the Tarot have to say about it? I have looked at the same question in another very recent post, where I used ordinary playing cards. We seemed to be seeing a Russian regrouping with big bumps in the road Oct and Nov and again before Christmas, a new offensive in January, and something big happening in March, and then again by Gemini time, late May-late June.

Last night I asked again, this time working with Tarot, asking, “in what month or year will there be a truce, ceasefire or permanent cessation of military action in Ukraine?”

I drew a single card. This was The Hanged Man- yet another outing for a card which has been jumping out of the deck since the invasion 24 February.

The Hanged Man stands for a waiting game, a state of limbo, an inability to make a decision. Or it can signify a sacrifice for a higher purpose, surrender, letting go, breaking a pattern, metamorphosis, suspension in time, meditation, changing one’s perspective, transcendence.

The Knight of Cups also corresponds with Pisces and The Hanged Man. He is the warrior who is a bringer of peace. He is the bearer of the Grail, of the loving cup or the healing chalice, who may be seen as Siegfried, or as one of the Knights of the Round Table, Lancelot, Galahad or Percival.

He rides along the shoreline, the knight of the liminal spaces.

From The Golden Tarot

Traditionally, the image is associated with a punishment once meted out to traitors in Italy, who were hung upside down by one ankle. Another interpretation is that this ties in with the story of the Norse god Odin. He hung upside down on Yggdrasil, the giant ash tree in exchange for the knowledge of the runes and they came to him in a vision on the ninth day without food or drink. One imagines he also had a mighty headache by that point. But the Tarot has its artistic roots in the courts of northern Italy during the Renaissance.

From the Tarot Illuminati, artist Erik C Dunne

Turn this card the other way up. Does he remind you of someone? Who does he look like? OK. He is not a dead ringer for Zelensky but let’s be reasonable- the Tarot is doing its best.

Tarot is not astrology and I am not an astrologer. However, there is a lot of astrology embedded in the Tarot, and clients have often asked the reader to have a stab at timings, with interesting feedback in respect of results.

In astrology The Hanged Man signifies Pisces, and the dates of Pisces in 2022 were 19 February to 20 March. This card was an apposite reflection of a recent event that had already happened since the invasion happened 24 February

This is what Tarot does- it detects, reflects and projects. Just treat this as a curiosity. I had not predicted the invasion of Ukraine, except that in a general 12 card reading done in December 2021 the Tarot had alerted me to a issue or problem attached to energy supplies from Russia, specifically NordStream 2.

I had also commented in an article published on Ask Astrology in January, that I had misgivings about 2022 on account of a general theme to do with the blurring or crossing of boundaries and borders. This again was connected with the Hanged Man. Its traditional ruler in astrology is Jupiter but its modern ruler is Neptune. Either way, 2022 was promising to be a year of deep waters and seismic events, metaphorically as well as physically. Jupiter goes large. Neptune goes deep.

Pisces, Atlas Coelestis John Flamsteed

John Flamsteed FRS (19 August 1646 – 31 December 1719)[a] was an English astronomer and the first Astronomer Royal. His main achievements were the preparation of a 3,000-star catalogue, Catalogus Britannicus, and a star atlas called Atlas Coelestis, both published posthumously“-Wiki

According to Western/ Tropical astrology, Jupiter is currently retrograde in Pisces and goes direct again 28-29 October-20 December 2022

According to Eastern/Vedic astrology Jupiter will remain in Pisces until 23 April 2023.

In Summary

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Based purely on the appearance of The Hanged Man, we have a range of possibilities here, suggesting that the war in Ukraine will end when:

-Mr Zelensky agrees to make a sacrifice, Hanged Man style, and decides to relinquish the Donbas to Russia. Mr Putin would claim this as a win, and use it as his way out of an increasingly untenable situation, though he or a successor of his same ilk could be back again in time, for another bite of land.

There is no reason why Zelensky should agree to such a thing, since Russia has broken international law and then gone on to commit war crimes. But if the population of the Donbas genuinely were more than 50% pro Russian separatists, might Zelensky decide that Ukraine would do better without them in the long run, given the state of affairs since 2014. Mr Putin after all, *only* wants to protect the 25 million Russians now living outside Russia’s borders in Ukraine and all across the Baltic.

Without Ukraine’s agreement to recognize referendum results held under the current conditions of duress, Putin will be forever fighting to hold on to the Donbas, and that’s no substantive win.

But it’s not a win for anyone else either, and won’t be unless the West can dig itself out of the hole it has got itself into, and continue to say no to cheap Russian gas this winter. If not, this whole thing simmers indefinitely or escalates next spring.

-or the war may end when Jupiter goes direct in Pisces, Tropical astrology style, 29 October-20 December. This seems highly improbable. Putin will want to squeeze the situation as hard as he can over the winter, praying the energy crisis will really bite down on the current levels of western support for Ukraine and leave her naked unto her foe.

-or the war may end during Pisces season, 20 February- 20 March. Saturn enters Pisces March 7, 2023 until May 24, 2025. Saturn is big on the status quo, on law and order, and it is big on boundaries and borders. The aftermath of this war will bring a long period of turbulence in its wake.

-or the war may end c late April 2023, according to the status of Jupiter in Pisces in Vedic astrology.

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There’s a feeling of events moving in stages, pointing towards something more conclusive or definitive March/April 2023. Tarot seems to be seeing a ceasefire slightly earlier than was indicated in my earlier cartomancy reading, though not hugely so.

But supposing the fighting stops right now, the political backwash runs high until 2025/2026. There will also be the small matter of reconstruction.

Something to watch for that is happening sooner, is an eclipse in Scorpio 8 November. Eclipses do not signify immediate changes, but historically they announce profound changes. Mr Putin is a Libra sun sign subject with Scorpio rising, and conjunct his sun is the fixed star Algorab, the wing of The constellation of the Crow, merciless and rapacious.

It doesn’t feel as though it bodes at all well for him personally. But Putin is choosing to wage a total war, so that any victory here, whether for Russia or Ukraine is a pyrrhic one.

The west is clearly not blameless either in all this, but it likely doesn’t bode too well for Scorpio subject Mr Biden either, in the US mid term elections 8 November.

What a year, this Chinese year of the Black Water Tiger

Till next time 🙂

Further reading https://www.armscontrol.org/factsheets/Ukraine-Nuclear-Weapons

Virgo, Heavenly Harvest Goddess

Here comes Virgo Season again. But what’s the ancient story – and the modern reality behind the zodiac sign?

True Tarot Tales

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“The Virgin with her sheaf belongs to Ceres,” The Astronomica, Manilius, 1st century AD.

Common Associations

Zodiac symbol

Dates: August 23-September 22

Symbol: The Virgin

Element: Earth

Quality: Mutable (Sagittarius and Pisces are also Mutable signs, marking the transitions between seasons, suggesting these subjects are capable and versatile; and generally inclined to conform, going with the flow if it’s for the greater good.)

Ruling planet: Mercury (Travel and all forms of communication)

House: Sixth, ruling health, habits and routines

Colour: green, white and yellow

Body: Virgo rules the Intestines/Digestion

Birthstone: Carnelian

Flowers: all small, bright flowers, clover, buttercups

Tarot cards: The Hermit (introspection, perception, analysis, care for nature)

Also the Eight, Nine and Ten of Pentacles, beneficent cards to do with art, craft, and productiveness as a direct result of study, craft, diligence, application and direction of discipline, focus and a sustained…

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