Naughty Old Devil!

That Ol’ Devil…True Tarot Tales.

Well, Valentine’s Day…get lost. (I say this though I am happily married, except for when I want to kill him)
Once upon a time you were a fertility festival called The Lupercal. Men in wolf masks ran about the streets of Rome, in honour of the fertility god Lupercus, and in memory of ther she-wolf who suckled Romulus and Remus, symbolically thrashing (ie, lightly touching) any women they met who seemed of child bearing age. Any woman not wanting to be fertile had better have stayed indoors. Then Christianity claimed the festival, originally held on February 15th.
Valentine’s day, you’re a fabricated commercial-fest, but, still, you serve as a reminder of magical eyernal of the human condition – ‘that ol’ Devil called Love’.

The Devil speaks of passions and powerlessness. It betokens entrapment, frustration, a need to break free, even if the wish is not there.

Look at the picture below. The man and the woman are being held in bondage to one another and to ‘the Devil’…by the power of their animal nature; their physical passions (food, sex, drugs, alcohol, daily habits etc) to which they are ‘addicted’. In terms of human body chemistry, sexual passion might as well be regarded as an addiction.

I’ve only once encountered what you might call a vampire, in my professional reading work. One reading that left me so drained I had to go straight to bed afterwards, where I slept like a stone all night. My client was a very nice person to read for, but she was in the grip of ‘the Devil’ all right. She was married, with a passion for another man, also married. She was a good looking and glamorous lady. I could tell from the cards that the man had powerful charisma. In fact I had a ‘psychic’ moment and guessed who it was. He worked in the entertainment industry. She was shocked that I guessed his identity (but no more than I was!)  All at once I seemed to ‘see’ him, looking out over her shoulder from the cards. I felt she might get a taste of what she was hoping for, but if she did, I could see no ‘happy ending.’

It was like being in a negative vortex. I hope she got free of her wish in time.

The Rider-Waite’s Devil card: U.S  Games  Systems

The Devil’s appeared in 3 readings recently, and each time drawn coupled with the Moon card, which signifies ‘hunting,’ fantasy, and emotional extremes.  In each case, someone was having a hard time struggling to let go of a romantic relationship but it was now time they must. They were no longer welcome. In fact, one was now in danger of behaving like a stalker, although on none of these occasions did I personally feel anything like the negative physical impact of the ‘show biz’ lovers. But show biz is ‘ego, ego’ and a powerful aura, positive or negative is perhaps to be anticipated in such readings.

William Blake’s lllustration ‘A Whirlwind of Lovers’…from Dante’s Divine Comedy. where obsession Has Consigned the Lovers To A ‘Circle Of Hell’…meaning in Tarot…an unfree state of mind.

The Devil card drawn upside down, or in Tarot-speak Reversed or Ill-Dignified, is usually better for being drawn upside-down, as it often denotes clarity and liberation. So if you’re trying to give up a habit that’s proving harmful or restrictive to you it’s a sign you’re going to be able to kick that habit, whether it’s physical or behavioural.

The Devil’s a card known, with justice, for its powerful negative aspects. It speaks of fear, frustration, anger, unhealthy habits, obsession and addiction, and the evil that can ensue from these things. Usually, the situation that it’s referring to could do with overturning. The tough news is that it’s going to have to be you that overturns it, and maybe too, there is no real solution and the situation meantime must just be endured. 

But The Devil isn’t all bad. As an image of Pan, god of all wild creatures, rather than in its guise as Christianity’s Devil, this beastly card is still strong stuff requiring careful handling but it signifies desire, animal magnetism, focus and  passion…

It is charisma. It is a drive and passion to create. It is our connecetion to our roots in earth and our general animal vitality – (steady tiger!) –  a strong glue for keeping relationships together over the long haul. As they say, a little of what you fancy does you good.

The anger of The Devil also comes in handy just now and then, should you be unfortunate enough to find yourself dealing with any bullies or tin pot gods. Let that Devil look out of your eyes, as you politely say ‘I beg your pardon?’ 

If a glimpse of your inner Devil wins you a bit of respite, and pushes cr*p out of your space, there’s not much the matter with that either.

No. The Devil’s not always bad. The challenge is to keep him in his place and not feed him too often, letting him get too powerful.  

Just make sure it’s your naughty devil, or cheeky imp, that’s under control and inside the cage.  Not you.

Imp: Public Domain via Clipart.

                                                                                       

 

Tarot Bites…

Summertime, and the livin’ is easy. Except, flying home from Spain on Sunday over the Bay of Biscay , it was clear to see the cradle of our summer weather problems….you could look down and see what the jet stream was brewing there, and  the head on the beer  just went on and on. The account below was written in 2010 and spoke of events in 2009. Our summers have been odd since at least 2008, with the last scorcher in 2006. Implications for the UK Tourist Industry, offset against the effects of recession?

‘The weather was odd at home last year in 2010, and even in N Italy where we went in August 2009…it was very changeable, cool at times, and there were  cracking thunderstorms nearly every day. Forked lightening like you could scarcely believe.  Now, you can’t see the bites in this photo, taken near Florence that summer, but the Italian for ‘mosquito,’ I can inform you, is zanzara. And the word for a bite is puntura. These are helpful words to know when you need to go to la farmacia.

I had received a warning about the mosquito campaign from the Tarot, fat lot of good it did me. The warning was presented as follows.

The Page of Swords (A Page card in Tarot can mean something small, swords can mean air and something that is sword-like and sharp – like a needle or in this case, a bite or sting)

The Page of Pentacles Reversed (ie in Tarot’s language ‘debased earth’, prefiguring the infection of said bites, round and swollen and red, the opposite of the green associated with pentacles cards, the suit of earth. )

The Page of Cups Reversed. Ahem. Not looking one’s best going round impersonating a human giant measle. The suit of Cups relates to healing, happiness, well-being and beauty. It corresponds with the element of water, and therefore also indicated a need to ensure maintenance of adequate hydration.

I had upon reading this duly armed myself with repellent ( ask for controlgio d’insetti, folks) after our first night there. Did it work? Did it heck. But don’t let that put you off. It might for you.

Then – and perhaps I reacted unusually badly because my immune system was depressed, I tried anti-histamines, hydrocortisone, lavender, tea tree, TCP and finally, a course of antibiotics from a gentle Italian GP who came out 40 minutes after being called. This allowed us the guilty thrill of using that little plastic E111 card for the first time. The service was brilliant though it did cost 25 euros for the call-out, but hey, it was 7.30 on a Saturday evening. We were grateful. Would we have received such a prompt response at home?

We need the Jet Stream to move north. I think we’ll have some better pockets dotted fairly regularly throughout August. Better than June and July, I mean.  Another fairly crummy summer so far…but we will never surrender.  We will fight it in the garden, and in front of the telly, and in good company, and with a cup of cocoa and….

One of the hottest summers I remember, was two weeks spent on the Appin Peninsula in NW Scotland. And it was sublime. It was glorious, and there were white sands and blue waters to rival the Med any day. The only problem (- there is always a serpent in paradise) was the darn, pesking clouds of mozzies.

I think that’s where I came in…

Tarot ‘Plays’ Footie

I rarely watch sport, and can’t bear all the roaring and howling that comes out of the telly when football’s on.  Some of those commentators get really foamingly hysterical and could do with a slap. But who am I to naysay a national passion? The card below, the 6 of Pentacles, also known as Coins or Discs, is the card I have learned to associate with the ‘home crowd’.

 I wouldn’t feel comfortable using the Tarot for betting purposes.  Or safe. It would seem disrespectful, contrary to ethics, and if  it didn’t work out, there could be unwanted comeback. And if it did work out, there could be unwanted comeback.

Maybe someone would like to make a movie about a tarot reader who gets a hit man set on to them by a cartel of evil bookmakers, because the reader’s giving too many winning tips and it’s costing the bookmakers big time. Hello, Quentin T? Are you there?

But if Tarot is a divination tool, what will it co-operate in divining for and what won’t it divine for? Does the ability to divine depend upon the reader having a personal interest or sense of connection to the question? 

I live just down the road from Blackpool and Saturday was  a big sporting event. Blackpool (the Tangerines) were playing Cardiff at Wembley. At stake, so I gather, a place in the Premier League and £90 million. High stakes indeed.

I laid out my cards in a counting spread. I laid out six cards and above them another.  The six cards ‘count’ for one point each. The solitary card above them counts for two, giving a total of eight.

I laid out two of these spreads, one to represent Blackpool, the other Cardiff.

As I shuffled I asked to be shown the winning team.

Normally in a counting spread, a likelihood of something happening will be given by a result of drawing more upright cards than upside down cards, known as reversals.

I drew a count of three upright cards for Blackpool. Doesn’t look great, I thought. Then I drew a count of two uprights for Cardiff. Oh, I thought. That’s not a win either according to my usual system.

I decided that the Tarot had answered a differently phrased question. It knew what I was trying to get at and had answered me very directly, not by saying a yes or no, but by indicating the SCORE.

And a little over two hours later, we had the score: Blackpool 3: Cardiff City 2.

SEE VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS BELOW (…if you absolutely must.)

http://www.footytube.com/video/blackpool-cardiff-city-may22-47851

As a tarot reader, getting an answer that doesn’t seem to fit the question, be prepared to discover that the answer you’ll get is a correct answer to the question as the Tarot preferred to tackle it.

Tackle. Geddit?

So in answer to the original question…no. Divination does not require an emotional connection from the reader. In  fact, this could skew the results. Reading for yourself if you’re tired or anxious, or reading for loved ones where there is anxiety or hope attached to the question, may produce distortion of interpretation. 

If reading for yourself, try pulling  an extra card – a  BIAS CARD to identify any such distortion.

When receiving a reading, bear in mind tarot and similar activities work best when your reader is in an ‘alpha state,’ a condition of relaxed consciousness. Scowling at a reader with cold suspicion, arms folded, is not conducive to the alpha state for either of you…because you too,  will get most from your reading in the creative receptivity of alpha state.

If you follow football, you have pretty good hunches sometimes, and want to be even better at hedging your bets…you could do much worse than hone your intuition by learning a divination skill.  Joking aside, such skills, whether you’re using tarot cards, ordinary playing cards, runes, divining rods, mirrors or pendulums…are a tool for life, with who knows how many applications.

Questions or comments? Just click on the comment tag below. 

Double Trouble…

What a few weeks it has been for anyone using the Tarot to try and divine the Election outcome.  On May 4 I looked in the cards and saw a riot of apparent contradiction. Cross- referencing a number of question-and-answer columns, I seemed to be witnessing the following scenario post May 6:-

Gordon Brown still in situ in No. 10

BUT David Cameron the ‘winner’…just

AND a Hung Parliament was probable. (chance  3/5 or greater.)

GB! I thought. And I meant Gordon Bennett!  not Gordon Brown. It looked completely bonkers.  I tried to rationalise what I was looking at and couldn’t. I couldn’t  think of a formula or precedent, that would allow me to accept the Tarot’s preview as likely.

Now, to use the Tarot for divination on public matters or world events doesn’t feel at all the same as doing an interpersonal reading. When attempting to divine impersonal events, such as earthquakes for example, or the actions or thinking of a mass collective…such as the national consciousness, the variables are truly enormous.

Even so. Hindsight (or Back In Time, as Tarot author Janet Boyer terms it) serves here as a reminder that reading the Tarot can require NERVE.

We have come though an education system that doesn’t teach us to how to train or access our unconscious mind pro-actively.  To live peaceably in society settings, the human animal has had to compromise individual instinct…which is why the divination arts are so often regarded with mistrust and disfavour. They theoretically represent a potential threat to society.  Imagine the social consequences of all of us acting on our gut feelings about other people…we’d struggle to work productively in co-operative teams of strangers in the workplace for starters, wouldn’t we? 

As a tarot reader it doesn’t necessarily come easy, trusting what you see in your cards when it doesn’t square with your rational analysis of the question.  Learning to ‘just go with it’ is the simplest and yet the hardest thing of all.

And so, returning to the reading on the Election, we drew the Emperor Rev as an Emperor  (PM, Government, authority figure, paterfamilias) departed  – with gravitas and dignity in my personal view, just as he had conducted himself in the T.V debates – with gravitas and dignity.

And now we have two younger, smaller Emperors…

Let’s hope it’s a harmonious workable team, as in the Tarot’s Chariot card, able to forge smoothly ahead, and not the Chariot Reversed which would signify Double Trouble…

Below is the Chariot Card from the popular pre 1900’s IJJ Swiss Tarot Deck.

I would say to tarot students, ‘nerve’ develops with experience.  Cutting your ‘tarot teeth’ reading for a forgiving audience -family, friends, friends of friends, doing lots and lots of them, will help you find your key strengths and affinities in working with the Tarot.

This develops confidence in your divination…the Tarot’s power is the power of self-trust.

House Buying/Selling: The Moon card was not good news

Photo by Gabby K on Pexels.com

House hunting and house selling are, not surprisingly, a frequent theme in Tarot readings.

The Cards commonly seen around this theme include the Ace of Coins, the Ace of Wands, 4 of Wands, any of the Swords/Wands court cards may represent a property or legal professional, and for relocation – when it’s further afield, not just a move to another part of town – we might see the 6 of Swords.

A client was having trouble selling and asked why. The Tarot drew The Moon and the 9 of Coins reversed. This combination; The Moon showing dogs barking, and implying disturbed sleep, and the 9 of Coins Reversed, indicating boundary issues or difficulties with neighbours, prompted me to wonder if there were dogs next door. Maybe they barked a lot.

The Moon is a tricky card. It means unreliable information, lack of clarity, uncertainty, worry, risk, while it was the imagery itself that prompted me to wonder about dogs. This happens a lot in readings. It will often be the imagery itself that prompts a psychic hit, above or beyond any expressly listed card card meaning.

From The Gilded Tarot

Oh dear. Yes there was. The doggies barked day and night. 

The cards were picking up on her anxiety about what this meant not only for herself, but for selling her property. She had not fallen out with the neighbours—they had only recently moved in and she didn’t know them. In fact she was, understandably, anxious at the thought of raising the matter with them,but the disturbance was becoming intolerable.

This issue directed the next few minutes of the reading.

The Tarot drew the sharp and incisive air sign card, the Page of Swords in response to her question about possible ways to handle this difficulty. 

From The Gilded Tarot

One would always go softly softly to start with, and give others the full benefit of the doubt. ‘A soft word turneth away wrath.’

Who needs wrath, if it can possibly be avoided? Life is too short.

But there are also things we can’t reasonably be expected to put up with. This page is all about the fact that Knowledge (Information) is Power. In this case, this suggested a knowledge of the legal rights and responsibilities of householders, and the procedures and authorities attendant upon the exercise and upholding of these in cases of noise disturbance. But this is a notoriously tricky issue.

 The Page of Swords suggested she make a polite, clear, and to the point request, possibly a note so as not to appear confrontational, stating the problem and phrasing a clear request to the neighbours. This is the Page’s style – clear, calm, no fudging, and to the point…

The Page of Swords is a researcher, a planner (and plotter) has a highly developed sense of ‘natural’ justice  (and does readily not admit defeat.)

If this initial step did not produce results, still, it would serve to benchmark and document the problem, but the legal minded Page of Swords served as a reminder that if the situation escalated to a dispute, this would, by Law, (UK) have to be notified to prospective house buyers.

If she asked nicely and got ‘no joy’  from the neighbours, or if it escalated. then the Page of Swords – a figure of logic, law and surveillance might follow such tactics as these:-

1- information gathering—keeping records in other words, gathering a body of evidence, pending  preparatory to seeking help from the local authority.

<p value="<amp-fit-text layout="fixed-height" min-font-size="6" max-font-size="72" height="80">2-possibly, if no joy, and if the problem persisted, call RSPCA (concern for the dogs's welfare…no walks, shut out on cold nights…)2-possibly, if no joy, and if the problem persisted, call RSPCA (concern for the dogs’s welfare…no walks, shut out on cold nights…)

On another occasion, The Moon made a house buying forecast. I could see a house coming up in the coming months. It had a lovely garden (10 cups) but the client needed to be vigilant.

The Moon, coupled with the 9 of Coins Reversed suggested to me that a problem with boundaries and/or neighbours was going to emerge.

Should this happen, then any behaviour that was less than full and frank from the vendor in respect of boundaries should be taken as a warning sign against proceeding further.

The client confirmed she was thinking of moving soon, but had not started hunting yet, and had not therefore identified such a property.

All a reader can say in these circumstances is, in that case only time will tell.

Eighteen months later, the lady returned for another reading. and she had found a house with lovely gardens, and had fallen in love with it, and put in an offer.

However , the subsequent solicitor’s search revealed that the garden did not actually belong to the vendor. Not legally. A sizeable portion of it belonged to the neighbour, and it should not have been included in the sale details -a fact of which the estate agent seemed unaware.

The client remembered the Tarot’s warning and withdrew at this point, sadly, but probably wisely.

Till next time 🙂

Ding Dong (Door) Bell…

A client was late in arriving.  She had wanted a reading at a Saturday tea-time and now she was 1o minutes late. Hmmm. Was she en-route or was she going to be a no-show?  Tarot readers get caught out now and then, just like anybody else. They’re only fallible

I have a friend, Andrew, who is a very gifted clairvoyant. He will quite often pluck meaningful names out of the ether…very spooky, and when he does there’s nothing hit and miss about it. He did that with me once. ‘Who’s Edward?’ he said. ‘He’s very important to you. He’s a relative isn’t he? Is he your father…no hang on. He isn’t Edward. He’s Ted.’

Correct. And even someone with this spooky ability gets hit by timewasters and importunate sales callers.  Even the most super-psychic person in the world could not operate at their highest frequency all the time.

Andrew’s telephone rang one day.

‘I’ll make an appointment,’ the man said. ‘If you can tell me my name.’ Andrew might actually have been able to do so. But there was only one response such ignorance and crassness deserved. How would a reading with such a discourteous client have gone?

 ‘I think it must be Mr Twat,’  Andrew said. ‘But I’m sorry, I’m all booked up.’ 

I don’t pursue clients in any way shape or form. Don’t spam, don’t telephone (though I return calls if a message is left.) If they book then don’t show up – which has happened four times in 10 years – without making a cancellation, well, OK. I’ll remember them,  and they just won’t get another appointment  

So now, with this lady running late, having requested a time that I had accommodated out of goodwill,  I asked my cards, was the client en-route?

I drew The Chariot. This card of travel vehicles, speed, progress, ambition and teamwork was an indication that yes, she was on her way over.

The IJJ Tarot’s Chariot

How soon would she be arriving?

I drew the 4 of Cups. This seemed to indicate that she would be arriving in approximately 4 minutes, and that there was probably no particular crisis to be discussed in the reading, but she was in a rut and looking for ways to move ahead.

The lady arrived, apologising, just as I was re-shuffling the cards. It might have been 4 minutes later, more like 2-3. And she was a delight to read for.

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