Tarot card: Temperance: Timing, Moderation, Education, Solstice, Healing of Chiron
Sagittarius, the zodiac sign inspired by the constellation of Sagittarius, from the Latin meaning Archer, was recorded in the 2nd century by the Greek astronomer Ptolemy.
The constellation of Sagittarius is near the centre of our galaxy, the spiral Milky Way, mainly visible in the southern hemisphere June-November. In the Northern hemisphere the constellation is low on the horizon from August to October.
Sagittarius has a nickname, ‘The Teapot’ on account of its vaguely teapot-shaped star pattern, or asterism.
To find The Teapot
The best time to look is in August or September, somewhere really dark. Locate the hazy band of The Milky Way stretching right across the sky. Looking in the northern hemisphere, the Milk Way seems to bulge as it descends to the southern horizon. This ‘bulge’ is roughly about the middle of the Milky Way and is contained within the boundaries of the constellation Sagittarius.
Sagittarius contains a massive star-forming region, the Omega Nebula, and it’s home to the bright blue hyper-giant Pistol Star, one of the brightest stars in the Milky Way. Discovered by the Hubble Space telescope in 1930, The Pistol Star is largely hidden in the dust of its own nebula, but it’s 100 times as massive as our Sun, and 10,000,000 times as bright.
Sagittarius is the ninth sign in the Zodiac, not to be confused with the constellation itself, and represents those born between Nov. 22 and the advent of winter solstice, Dec. 21.
Sagittarius is nowadays generally associated with the story of Chiron.
But the story is far, far older, and goes back to a Babylonian god, Pabilsag, and even further back than that.
Pabilsag and the approaching Solstice
Pabilsag was the ancient Babylonian name for what we now call Sagittarius, handed down to the Greeks through the Sumerians and Kassites. The Sumerian word ‘Pabil’ means ‘ancestor or relative’. Combined with the final element sag, meaning ‘chief, head, tip or foremost,’ his name can be translated as the ‘Chief Ancestor’ or ‘Forefather’. Just as we were hunters at the dawn of human civilization.
Here, 3 millennia BC, we we have a winged centaur type figure, and yes, he is an archer too, and his arrow points at the heart of Scorpio, the red star Antares, but he also has a scorpion’s tail as the wheel of the Zodiac turns, and as Sagittarius gallops in, we leave Scorpio behind.
The distinction of Sagittarius, though, is that he is a solitary hunter. He does not work as one of a team to being down the really big prey. He is an individualist, working alone, just as many a hunter or trapper still hunts alone in winter.
The constellation of Sagittarius-Pabilsag is within the Milky Way, rising from the southern regions close to the horizon into the higher reaches of the skies.
This section of the Milky Way represents a symbolic bridge or a rainbow for the souls of the dead on their way to the afterlife, as the arrival of Capricorn draws near, marking the advent of the winter solstice. so that Sagittarius, or Pabilsag, is a psychopomp; a guardian and a guide to the dying year, and also the souls of the dying as the sun sinks ever lower.
Chiron the wounded Centaur
Most modern versions of the story refer back to much later, classical variants of the old Babylonian myths, and say that Sagittarius represents the gentle, cultured centaur, Chiron, who was accidentally shot by Herakles with a poison arrow.
The centaurs in general were a pretty rough lot, hard drinking, hard fighting, not remotely glamorous. It has been suggested that the legend rose from perfectly mortal, mounted ancient Greek cowboys.
But whatever the centaurs were, Chiron ‘the wisest and justest of the centaurs’ was something very different, representing a hope for the centaurs, and for Humanity itself, as collectively it strives to rise above the ever present tyranny of the Id and its own worst nature.
Here he is, trying to teach Achilles to control his temper, learning to play the lyre. Chiron had many other pupils, as well, including Asclepius, Ajax, Achilles, Theseus, Jason, Peleus, Perseus, and Phoenix. And Herakles, who brought about his death, when he was sent there to be schooled with Chiron.
Herakles had previously lost his temper with Linus, his music tutor back home. Linus, criticised his playing, and Herakles responded by smashing his lyre over the teachers head, killing him. Though in some accounts it was a stool.
Later, Chiron, wounded by the poison arrow, was left in terrible pain. He was wise in the ways of medicine, none wiser, but could not heal himself, and none could help him. Nor could he die, being Immortal.
Still, he carried on until he could bear it no more, and asked Zeus to release him from Immortality so that he could die and be free of pain.
Zeus placed him in the heavens and the story goes, placed him there as Sagittarius.
However, Chiron already has another constellation, Centaurus, and in addition, there is another classical version of the story of Sagittarius, referring instead to Krotos, a satyr who lived on Mount Helicon with the Muses.
Krotos was the son of Pan and Eupheme, and his mother had nursed the Muses. He was a renowned archer, hunter, horse rider – hence a possible source of confusion with the centaur, and besides all this, a devotee of his childhood companions, The Muses and their arts.
Krotos means ‘One who Claps his hands.’ He was credited by the Greeks with not only having invented archery, but introducing the convention of applause at artistic performances.
It was the Muses who, for his own musical talents, when Krotos died, asked Zeus to place him among the stars, which he did, transforming him into the constellation Sagittarius, says this variant of the zodiac story.
So Sagittarius is either the cultured wounded healer, Chiron, already represented in the constellation Centaurus, or he is the cultured satyr, Krotos; goaty, horse-riding archer, culture vulture and hunter extraordinaire.
There is a secondary link here, Krotos the Satyr linking Sagittarius with Capricorn, the next sign coming up, sun sinking to the winter solstice.
Chiron or Krotos?
Take your pick.
Or go Babylonian with Pabilsag.
Sagittarius is keenly intuitive, and usually has a marked talent, a gift, in the field of the Arts. Winston Churchill for example, was probably psychic, subject to visions and feelings of premonition, and he also painted.
Delphi said there were three Muses. But c 600 BC Hesiod wrote in his Theogony that there were Nine Muses, the daughters of Zeus and Mnemosyne (Memory personified) and this is the version that has generally stuck.
They were not necessarily benign. They were touchy, sensitive to human hubris, and liable to exact vengeance of anyone they decided was getting too far above themselves.
Kalliope ‘She of the Lovely Voice’ was the muse of epic poetry. Also of Diplomacy.
Klio ‘She Who Proclaims’ was the muse of history.
Erato ‘The Lovely One’ was the muse of love poetry.
Euterpe ‘She Who Pleases’ was the muse of music.
Melpomene ‘She Who Sings’ was the muse of tragedy.
Polyhymnia ‘She of the Many Hymns’ was the muse of sacred poetry.
Terpsichore ‘She Who Delights to Dance’ was the muse of dance.
Thalia ‘The Cheerful One’ was the muse of comedy
Urania ‘The Heavenly One’ was the goddess of astronomy, astrology, and later, Christian poetry.
Sagittarius: The Astrological Personality
Of course there is no such thing as THE Sagittarius personality. Everyone is unique. We are speaking here of an archetype.
Sagittarius zodiac sign subjects need constant adventures to stay interested. Freedom is of the utmost importance to them. Movement. Travel. Space and room for manoeuver. Likewise they allow space and freedom to their partners.
The archetype of Sagittarius is brave, lively, warm, optimistic, curious, adventurous, rational but also insightful, even visionary.
They are generally astute, clever and capable people but they need career flexibility, and they may refuse to fail to apply themselves if bored. Like Gemini, they are prone to restlessness. They may fail to stick at a job or a succession of jobs, and may struggle financially long term in consequence.
Hence their challenge, but also their guiding light is the idea of Temperance,personified in the Tarot and symbolising patience, prudence, and the art of good timing.
They can do domestic. It’s not that. But you wouldn’t really call it how they roll.
And they do tend to roll, place to place, job to job, and a rolling stone gathers no moss. The problem being, other things it doesn’t gather either, like a steady home life, or steady income, or savings or other means of security in old age, if Sagittarius does not balance the need for freedom , space and independence with prudence and good timing.
Sagittarius tends to have lots of friends. More than almost anyone else, so much so, family and friends can feel neglected at times, forgotten, when Sagittarius goes off yet again, devil may care, to share experiences with new best friends.
Sagittarius must have inspiration, and the freedom to follow it, and to roam. But this humanitarian, kindly, if restless rolling stone sooner or later almost always comes trotting, or should we say, rolling home again, expecting to find their loved ones exactly where they left them. And usually, they will. Though others too, do not enjoy being taken for granted, and this may need care.
They will be the star of this show, but what they really need for domestic happiness, is a quietly confident, self-reliant partner who has plenty of interests themselves; and much life experience, who will be their rock but who will not roll.
Katie-Ellen@TrueTarotTales I spooked Il Matrimonio today. I dreamed he went to Copenhagen to see ‘the Hanseatics’ and mentioned this to him late this morning (he hates dream talk, but tough) He told me he had just posted a new ship history online- The Hanseatic Inspiration. Like the birds, telepathy.
Il Matrimonio was up very early this morning, busy early bird, while I was in and out of the Land of Nod, zonked like many of us with weeks of disturbed sleep, plus the effects of a short course of meds prescribed to slow the rate of damage to my hands, due to the ongoing predations of a sero-negative rheumatoid problem.
They are helping somewhat. But this has been a relentless adversary the past 25 years.
Il Matrimonio meanwhile, had been at work in his study and tweeted a ship history online on Twitter at 7.19 AM this morning. I may have been dreaming it even as he was typing it. Who knows.
Don Hazeldine@donships1· Hanseatic Inspiration in #Kiel Hanseatic Inspiration 2019 16,100 Hapag-Lloyd by Vard Tulcea/Langsten Image copyright: Capo Franz
He psychically buzzed it through the ether.
But after all, we have been living together for thirty years. Perhaps this telepathy should not be remotely surprising, given the proximity and longevity of the radio connection, and we are all more like the starlings than we think.
I don’t feel a sense of personal connection to Mr Trump, or Mr Biden either, so when I look at them, I am trying to hear-see what the starlings are saying en masse, but with me as one of them in the mass.
I could just switch on the telly but that is NOT the starlings. Even social media is not the starlings. All of it together, which means all that which is staying quiet, that is the starlings.
It should be in the bag for Mr B, so why is this such a roiling sea.
27 October I drew these cards shown below.
Counting out of 7, we count a red card as a yes and a black card as a no.
Top Row Mr T: King Diamonds 6 Diamonds 3 Clubs 9 Clubs Queen Hearts ACE CLUBS 9 Hearts. This is a strong showing.
The cards themselves. Well, 27 October, Mr T drew the stronger cards. But based on the counting system, black v red, yes/no, they were showing neck and neck.
However one cuts it, this is no landslide forecast. For either.
There could be a delay of some kind, or a challenge though Mr T has previously said he will accept the result, as is the norm in democracy, however imperfectly it seems to operate at times. The alternatives are too shocking to contemplate.
But he’d got the Ace of Spades in there when I looked back on 20 September. This is the most notorious…and powerful minor arcana card.
It describes or forecasts an Idea, an act of law, a victory,a coup, or a loss or a demise.
Especially if Mr B should he lose any one of the so called ‘rust-belt states.’
Handsome birds, starlings, but who loves them? Unloved by many because they are too many, noisy, messy, pugnacious, common, ubiquitous? Well, yes, and we are also too many. We better beware hubris, and watch our own step.
There is what we see in plain sight, like the spectacle of a murmuration, and there is what can only see ‘through a glass darkly,’ to quote the grumpy Apostle Paul.
My cards are not in line with the polls or my logic. But I must keep faith with the process or be forsworn in neutrality. One can only be wrong. It looks like Mr B to win in the polls, but it still could work out as Mr T.
This is the future still in the making then. The cards are doing a snapshot in time, reflecting real time, or doing mass telepathy, starling-style.
It has occurred to Mr T that he really might not depart. That the Law (the Supreme Court?) might enable that outcome. This, then, has not reached the tipping point of no return.
There was much recent discussion on Twitter to the effect that if no clear winner were to be declared by 20 January 2021 after the upcoming US Elections 3 November, there is a constitutional provision that could make Speaker Nancy Pelosi President of the United States.
This arose in the wake of Mr Trump expressing a wish to delay the Election scheduled for 3 November 2020, an action for which I understand, there is no historical precedent.
I have done a reading on the forthcoming election, posted here a few days ago, and you can find it in the archives. Those cards indicated, perhaps counter-intuitively, that the recent civil unrest might actually work in favour of Mr T’s chances rather than against them, but the Joker turned up….oh, that Joker….
I may well do further readings before the election to see if that picture shifts, and to see how it shifts, but the appearance of the Joker card says surprises are in store.
Could this be the surprise? A President Pelosi?
I shuffle and draw 5 playing cards and read them left to right, paying attention to the rising, flattening or declining curve, the balance of ‘yes’ and ‘no’ cards, and noting in particula the central card ad the last cards for an indicatio of future developments.
The Line of Five
Well, the indications are not strong.
2 Spades in this context suggests the premise of the question: a scenario containing two ‘negative candidates’ drawn in a situation where one is not stronger than the other. The Tarot equivalent o this card would be the Two Of Swords which suggests a truce, a pause- or a stalemate. It is a no card.
This card gives me my benchmark. It is clearly relevant to the question being asked.
Jack Spades: bad news, a delay, a point of Law. It is also a no card.
Queen of Clubs: This central card surely denotes Ms Pelosi herself; a ‘dark’ lady with good social instincts and often business acumen. This could be either a yes or a no card.
10 Clubs: this is a very positive card of culmination, completion and it is the card of government. (It can also mean a bathtub, but that’s by the by) Reading this in context, this could be either a yes or a no card, but if it was an Ace Clubs, that would be more likely to represent a yes than the 10 of Clubs, representative of culminations rather than arrivals.
7 Hearts: this future card is all about uncertainty, romantic longing, daydreams, sweet dreams. It is a card of a possible but unstable yes.
This last card, taken with the others, is the only red suit (yes) card, but given the surrounding cards seems to be saying, ‘in your dreams.’
Here, kitty, kitty….
I understand that Speaker Pelosi is second in line to the succession of the Presidency after the Vice-President, but I’m in the UK and I don’t know too much about all this. Now that I’ve given my cards the first shout, let’s look at the info, to see where this story came from, and what the possibilities might be.
“When voters head to the polls in November to choose the path for the next four years in a deeply divided nation, they will choose between President Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden.
But in what has already been a one-of-a-kind 2020, an improbable figure could also become president.
The path for Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), who is second in line of succession to the presidency, to succeed Trump is quite implausible. But it is not impossible.
The first step is a tie in the Electoral College. And that tie is indeed possible.
If Trump loses Michigan, Pennsylvania and Nebraska’s 2nd Congressional District to Biden and holds everything else he won in 2016, the two candidates would be deadlocked at 269 electoral votes a piece.
A few other results could also end in a tie, though perhaps they are even more unlikely.
A tie could result if Biden manages to win Arizona and Iowa, but loses Wisconsin and Michigan. Or if Biden rebuilds the northern Blue Wall, recapturing Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin, but somehow manages to lose Colorado’s nine votes.
“We rate the claim that Nancy Pelosi would become president should the 2020 election be postponed as FALSE because it was not supported by our research. Pelosi’s (own) term (of office) ends Jan. 3, and if no federal election takes place, she would have to leave office, just like the president and vice president. That would mean the president pro tempore of the Senate would assume office. Currently, that is Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley, though a downsized Senate may swing in favor of Democrats, presenting them the opportunity to elect a new president pro tempore.”
How soon will we see the UK (and global) economy recover from the recession created by the global effort to minimize deaths due to covid19? I am basing the question on a dateline starting this 1 September.
I shuffle and draw the Nine of Pentacles, also called the Nine of Coins.
This lovely Minor Arcana card is in my mind, the Tarot’s personification of Britannia and it:-
talks first and foremost about financial independence and self-sufficiency attained through employment or self-employment.
correlates with the zodiac sign of Virgo, which runs 23 August-22 September and together with the other earth signs, Taurus and Capricorn, is a key zodiac sign associated with banking and financial services. Also schools and universities.
Is ruled by Venus, planet of beauty. Not only does it rule banking and all financial services, it rules the beauty industry, hospitality, architecture, the arts, design, fashion and horticulture, viticulture and food production.
Therefore, drawing the Nine of Pentacles, I am satisfied that the Tarot has ‘logged’ the question. OK. So how long for the UK to come out of recession, counting ahead in financial quarters of a year.
How many financial quarters will it take?
I switch to my ordinary playing cards asking to see how many financial quarters it will take the UK to enter recovery, using one card to represent one quarter and asking to be shown the Ace of Diamonds in token of a definitive answer to this question.
Divination involves a lot of this kind of self-programming. It’s all in the framing.
I shuffle the cards blind, pull a card, pull another, pull another…and hey presto, the third card out is The Ace of Diamonds.
The Ace of Diamonds is suggesting that the UK will start to see recovery in the third quarter counting forward from September, which would bring us to June 2021.
I’m surprised that the Ace Diamonds has made an appearance so soon and I carry on pulling cards. Why? To book-end a date range. Hedging my bets? You could see it that way.
The fifth card, representing the fifth quarter is the Six of Diamonds.
Six is the number of community, and diamonds is the suit of money. This card can suggest loss, and of course there have been losses, and there will be more. But on balance it is a positive omen for the state of UK employment.
In summary the UK seems to be in recovery during the next 3-5 financial quarters bringing us to June-December 2021.
Does this count as a V-shaped recovery which the PM has said he is optimistic of seeing? I’m not a finance person, but where will new jobs come from for the people being made redundant when the furlough comes to a close?
I suppose what I am seeing here is something between a V and a U shaped economic recovery as described by Forbes. Click HERE to read its article describing various possible recovery scenarios, though, note, they are discussing the American economy.
The scenario we don’t want to see there, here or anywhere is the interminable L shaped recovery.
What about the global picture? I carry on pulling cards. 12 cards, 12 quarters, so that’s three years which brings us to September 2023 and the twelfth card is my red Joker, the ultimate card of a new beginning- in the context, this is to be treated as an affirmative card suggesting global recovery, though obviously this is going to vary country to country, and this timescale could mean a late straggler. Still, this recession looks less long lasting than the aftermath of the banking crash of 2009.
So now I go online to find out what the Bank of England has been saying.
“The Bank expects the UK economy to shrink by 9.5% this year. While this would be the biggest annual decline in 100 years, it is not as steep as its initial estimate of a 14% contraction.”
So, we drew the Nine of Pentacles and here they are, forecasting a shrinkage of 9.5 % this year. But wait….hang on – here comes another nine.
“More than nine million jobs have been furloughed under the government’s job retention scheme, but the Bank expects most people to go back to work as the economy recovers.”
One of these people has been my son- in- law, a chef. And now he’s back to work. But hang on a sec…. ding- a- ling, here comes a third nine.
“The Bank expects the UK economy to grow by 9% in 2021, and 3.5% in 2022, with the economy forecast to get back to its pre-Covid size at the end of 2021.”
For the UK economy to return to its precovid size by the end of 2021 would accord with the 5 quarters intimated by the Six of Diamonds.
So here we have three Bank of England predictions, and three nines, in seeming accordance with my playing cards and the Tarot’s Nine of Pentacles, aka the Nine of Coins.
In a further comment Andrew Bailey, the Governor of The Bank of England said,
… “the UK still faced its sharpest recession on record, with the outlook for growth now “unusually uncertain.” Mr Bailey said it was the “largest quantum of uncertainty in a forecast” that policymakers had ever published.”
A quantum of uncertainty in a forecast. Well, I definitely recognize that feeling, Mr Bailey. Welcome to my own tiny corner of the world.
This may all be something or nothing. It may seem a bit peculiar. It is peculiar, the synchronicity aka so-called ‘meaningful coincidences in evidence here, but that’s the mystery of the Tarot and I am well used to it.
But. But. But says Madam Logic-Chopper. (and that’s me) Were my cards detecting the future or were they somehow picking up on and reflecting the present understanding of this evolving situation?
Either way, it is a demonstration of synchronicity in action, but which was it? I’m a gonna ask the Tarot. I shuffle and draw The Knight of Cups.
And the Tarot ‘s reply? ‘You know it in your water and the water is a mirror .’
Oh, do I? Oh, does it? Well, thanks for clearing that one up good and proper. A properly oracular answer, that one! Properly Delphic. Typical Tarot.
The Knight of Cups also represents The Holy Grail and The Healing Chalice. The Grail Cup, and that’s the thing we’re all looking for, isn’t it?
Orion The Hunter returns, and in the northern hemisphere can once again be seen bestriding the east at sunrise. So when we say return, where has he been, then? The answer is, he has been invisible, hidden in the glare of the sun since May.
But now he is back and will rise earlier each day until he is visible all evening during the winter months. As a girl I used to like to go out on cold frosty evenings to fill the coal scuttle from the coal bunker in the back garden. Looking up at him. I knew his name. I knew he was The Hunter but wondered about him, and what he was hunting up there.
Those winter evenings still have that same kind of magic.
Orion is only the 26th largest constellation, sitting on the celestial equator, facing the constellation next door, the oncoming, charging, Taurus the Bull. So it’s far from being the biggest, and it’s smaller than another Greek hero, Perseus but Orion’s got more brilliant stars, commanding the impression of its vastness.
(The biggest constellation of all is Hydra, and the biggest constellation of the twelve included in the Zodiac is Virgo.)
Orion’s two brightest stars are the blue-white star Rigel, representing the Hunter’s left foot, and the red supergiant Betelgeuse, Orion’s right shoulder. They’re both thought to be to be about ten million years old, which makes Betelgeuse quite young to be a red supergiant, but it’s evolved faster due to its enormous mass. It is expected to go supernova in the next million years and when it does will be brighter than the Moon and the brightest supernova ever to have been visible from Earth.
Orion’s third brightest star is Bellatrix, his left shoulder, and Orions’s Belt is one of the most easily recognized asterisms with its three stars.
You can read them east to west or left to right; Alnitak (girdle), Alnilam (string of pearls) and Mintaka (area) They have many other names across the world; The Magi, the Three Mary’s, and the Mayans called them The Fire Drill, invoking them in an annual fire ceremony to delay the onset of the end of the world.
‘No other constellation more accurately represents the figure of a man,’ said Germanicus Caesar
Orion is identified as a human figure in every culture at every latitude, with countless variations of different names and legends.
Orion, also called Nimrod, was the son of Poseidon and was the most handsome man ever to walk the earth. He was a great hunting buddy and friend of Artemis.Her twin brother, Apollo glowered, seeing that Artemis fancied Orion something rotten when she had taken a vow of perpetual chastity.
Orion could be a bit of a sex pest, chasing the Pleiades, so that Zeus confiscated them to the sky for their own peace and quiet. And a fat lot of good it did them, because when Orion was killed by a scorpion (THE scorpion) Artemis in her grief, asked Zeus to post Orion upstairs to the heavens, which he did, right next door to the Pleiades, who also represent the celestial bull pen of Taurus. Thanks Zeus. You didn’t think that one through, did you?
Should Taurus ever break free of his pen, said an ancient Arabic legend, it will be the end of all things, so let’s hope he’s happy up there, and that Orion doesn’t chase the Pleiades away.
Orion bravely strides towards the Bull but although he killed the scorpion that also killed him, he still fears it, and dreads its appearance fleeing west as the autumn wears on and Scorpius rises (Scorpio)
The stand off between Orion and Taurus the Bull, its red eye, Aldebaran glaring at him, daring him to come nearer, does not fit the Greek legend of Orion, and a question has been raised in some quarters over the identity of Orion, and whether he has become confused with Herakles/Hercules at any time in his identification with this constellation.
The reasons are likely historical. The constellation as recognized by the Greeks originated with the Sumerians, who saw in it their great hero Gilgamesh fighting the Bull of Heaven. The Sumerian name for Orion was URU AN-NA, meaning light of heaven and Taurus was GUD AN-NA, bull of heaven.
Gilgamesh was the Sumerian equivalent of Heracles, the greatest hero of Greek mythology, and one of the labours of Heracles was to catch the Cretan bull, but Orion was never in a fight with a bull. Heracles, it has been suggested, deserves a magnificent constellation such as this one, but has been consigned to a much more obscure area of sky. So has there been a mix-up, or perhaps we could see it as a mash-up, Orion and Heracles in mutual diguise?
Orion and The Tarot
The Tarot card most commonly associated with Orion is The Fool. The most numinous card in the deck, its element is Air and it is ruled by the planet of revolution, Uranus.
It is the portal of the number Zero.
The Fool or as some called him, The Jester, is both beginnings and ending.
In a real life reading it may detect or forecast a birth of a child, or a new offer or a launch or opportunity of some kind. And change happens all the time but this is always major or significant in scope. But although is not associated with Death, unlike the famous Death card, it can mean a death too, representing infinity, the ouroboros.
The Fool lives in the moment. He may be fun, he may be joy, or he may be frightening. There’s every reason a lot of people are scared of clowns as the living embodiment of The Fool. He represents the wisdom of innocence, or mistakes made through impulsiveness or ignorance rather than stupidity. But he may represent a threat, whether direct or existential, clearly sensed but not as yet clearly identifiable. The fear is visceral, not lightly to be dismissed.
He may be a shamanic, gnostic figure; the stranger, the outcast, the wise Fool or the Fool on the Hill. He dances to his own tune. He takes chances, risks, and sometimes these pay off, but sometimes he steps over the edge of the cliff, heedless of his dog’s most urgent warning.
The dog in the card is not biting the Fool, but desperately trying to get his attention. If someone asks the Tarot’s advice and then I draw this card reversed….someone needs to draw back from the precipice and look again before they leap.
I may bark like the Fool’s dog but will they act on this advice? CAN they? Will they even really hear it, let alone find a way to use it? We are who we are, and we do what we do, based on who we are. It is a rare person who can step back and see things anew once they are committed to Opinion A or B or they are emotionally invested in outcome A or B.
Advice, to be heard, must be sufficiently timely, before the paint dries.
Everywhere the Fool goes, his dog follows, just as Orion is followed in the skies by his two hunting dogs, Canis major and Canis minor. Sirius, the Dog Star is in the constellation of Canis Major and is THE brightest star in Earth’s night sky.
The only objects that outshine Sirius in our skies are the sun, moon, Venus, Jupiter, Mars and Mercury – and Sirius will usually outshine Mercury too.
All Mankind is Orion.
We were hunters at the dawn of man (The Fool) And gatherers too, but we were never gorillas, and never herbivores on our ancestral line.
“We were risen not of fallen angels but risen apes, and they were killer apes besides” – Robert Ardrey, in African Genesis.
Hunting was what brought us together in teams, then communities. Co operation meant compassion.
Fatboy Slim tells a version of that story here (except that we were apes but not on the gorilla branch). See Orion in the final frame of the video.
Leo is such a glamour-puss. So what’s this about the perm?
The sun has entered the second decan of fiery Leo, August 2-August 12 and tonight’s full moon, 3 August, is in Leo’s opposite zodiac sign; Aquarius, the water-bearer, the cloud bearer.
This is a strange, dreamy, quirky, quixotic and steamy combination. Maybe in a good way but not necessarily.
It might mean a few nights of oppressive humidity over the next two weeks.
It might mean getting frazzled.
It might mean steam coming out of your ears. Like this little lioness with a rather enviable perm.
The Major Arcana card associated with Leo is Strength: physical, mental, moral, emotional. Fortitude which demands patience. Nothing much can be achieved without the ability or willingness to stand and endure.
“Here I stand. I can do no other,” Martin Luther at the Diet of Worms.
“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”-Martin Luther King.
The second decan of Leo is associated with the Tarot’s Six of Wands, the 6 Wands; a card of action, vision, passion ,courage and superb self-discipline. This is what it takes to enter the arena – any arena. Riding high on the accomplishment of a great effort. But there are no short-cuts. No escaping the Herculean labour to be done. This is dedication to excellence; the attribute of the zenith of the sign of Leo.
Tonight this energy is tempered by the quirky, remote, cerebral Moon in Aquarius. The corresponding Major Arcana card here is The Star: inspiration, a vision, recovery, the application of reason, but this can also be the card of social revolution.
Bridging water, land and sky
Cloudy, cool Aquarian eye
Reasons, gauges Rain assuages
Pours, refills an empty jar
Learning, thirsty, takes us far
But Hope outshines all other stars
A very different mood. May steam be expected, and will it be steam coming out of someone’s ears? It may be best to keep your head down and just get on with your own thing, always assuming it’s not against the law, of course.
The Minor Arcana card corresponding with the degree of tonight’s Full Moon in Aquarius is the solemn yet benevolent Six of Swords; a road to recovery, new learning and discovery, charting new waters, leaving behind the past and with it any vain regrets.
The next two weeks look unsettled and a lot of us are likely to be feeling more jumpy than usual, even given all the anxiety of recent months . This is a time for staying extra cool, calm and flexible and avoiding risk and conflict. This is a time for focusing hard on work and personal projects, but not for making sudden moves or big changes.
There’s plenty to push our buttons right now. Leo says we can put our energies to plenty of good uses, doing our own thing, and Aquarius says we can keep our cool, even if others are losing theirs.
Every month I do a Tarot reading in collaboration with Astrologer Jessica Adams in which I pull a Tarot card, shuffled and drawn at random, or sometimes I draw more than one card, as with this reading for April. I am asking to see which way the wind is blowing for the next month to come.
But for whom and in respect of what precisely? Context is crucial for interpretation in a reading. When I am reading for a client. They ask questions and I respond, and this is how we get at specifics that are relevant. However, I start always cold, and that is the equivalent of what I am doing here.
This is an exercise in cold prognostication without benefit of context; an animal style attempt at sensing the weather to come, working two weeks ahead of publication.
Click below to read the findings for April 2020. They will be unlikely to surprise you in anyway. You have your own thoughts, anyone’s guess is as good as another’s, and we can all see and read what’s on the news.
The one thing I cannot control is the cards I get, however. And this manifestation of synchronicity – apparently random but meaningful coincidence is largely the point of this cold reading exercise.
Birth Stone: Aquamarine but also amethyst, ruby, bloodstone and jasper. Aquamarine is the blue variety of beryl. Emerald is a green beryl. The aquamarine is believed to enhance foresight and clairvoyance, and a sense of happiness.
Colour: Purple, violet, sea-green
Herbs/Flowers: the water lily (associated with Neptune)
Tarot card: The Moon: ebb and flow, cyclical shifts, intuition, dreams, visionary capabilities, fertility, difficulties with travel, uncertainties, shadow boxing, wild creatures, instinct v civilisation, genius, delusion
Public Domain: Rider-Waite
In the sky, Pisces is represented as two fish swimming at right angles to each other, one to the north and one to the west and attached by a cord. The fish are most usually depicted as koi.
Pisces, named for the Latin plural of fish is the 14th largest constellation overall. Pisces is in the first quadrant of the Northern Hemisphere and covers a large V-shaped region. While it is a fairly large constellation, its stars are faint — none are brighter than fourth magnitude — making it challenging to see in the sky with the naked eye.
Even so, its brightest star, Eta Piscium, also known as Alpherg or Kullat Nunu, is a bright giant star (G class) 294 light-years from Earth and has a luminosity 316 times greater that of the sun. Kullat Nunu is its Babylonian name. ‘Nunu’ means ‘fish’ and ‘kullat’ is a bucket.
Pisces second brightest star is Gamma Piscium, a yellow giant about 130 light-years from Earth.
Alpha Piscium is the third brightest star in Pisces, and is made up of a pair of white dwarf stars in close proximity. Its other name is Alrescha (“the cord.”) It lights the spot where it appears that the tails of the two fish are joined or tied together.
The best time to see Pisces in the Northern Hemisphere is between 6-9 November at 9 PM below the Square of Pegasus.
Pisces is notable for containing the point at which the sun crosses the celestial equator into the Northern Hemisphere around March 20 each year.
Image from the Atlas Coelestis, posthumously published by astronomer John Flamsteed, 1729, illustrator John Thornhill.
Astronomer and author Ian Ridpath explains: A cord joins the tails of Pisces. The horizontal dashed line passing through the southerly fish is the celestial equator, and the diagonal dashed line is the Sun’s annual path, the ecliptic.
The point where they cross is known as the vernal (spring) equinox.
History and Mythology
The fish of Pisces are attached by a cord of stars, just as life and death, and winter and spring are conjoined and cannot be separated.
Salmon spawn from October- December onwards. The last of the Atlantic salmon spawning happens late February, after which the salmon die. Perhaps there is a connection here.
Pisces is a mutable sign. These are the signs that mark the end of a season; the other mutable signs are Gemini and Sagittarius. Pisces marks the end of winter, leading up to the vernal equinox. Of all the zodiac signs, mutable signs are traditionally the most flexible and adaptable, the ones most at ease with endings and transitions and change.
Pisces is not only the last sign of winter, moving into spring; it is the last sign of the whole zodiac year, the culmination of all the signs that came before it. Symbolically therefore, Pisces has one foot, or fish in the death of the old year, meaning the last of the winter, pre-spring equinox, and one foot or fish in the quickening of spring, post-spring equinox.
Winter often brings mourning, as it carries away the frail and the old.
Psychic Pisces straddles the season of that winter’s grief and the new green shoots of spring.
The sign of Pisces is Babylonian in origin. Enki, the Sumerian god of wisdom, and the alleged true father of mankind, is associated with the planet Neptune, which astrologically rules the sign of Pisces.
To the ancient Greeks, the fish themselves were the goddess Aphrodite and her son, Eros. They were walking by the Euphrates one day when a terrible monster, Typhon, suddenly rose up out of the water to destroy them.
The gods of Olympus were no match for this particular very ancient monster, a son of Gaia, or Earth herself. He was as tall as the heavens and his eyes shot flames. Instead of fingers, he had 100 dragon’s heads sprouting from his hands.
None of the Olympians had the power to destroy the ghastly Typhon, or confront him, not alone, and he tried to kill them every chance he got. For a time, all they could do was flee, often by transforming themselves into animals, and Aphrodite and Eros, in this case, transformed themselves into fish and swam away.
Another version of the story says they dived into the river, and were rescued by two friendly fish that carried them to safety, and were later placed in the sky, their tails intertwined, to commemorate the day when Eros (Love) and Aphrodite (Beauty) were saved from a hideous fate.
Ultimately, Zeus managed to imprison the terrible Typhon beneath Mount Etna…and he is still very much alive down there to this day.
The Astrological Personality
There is no such thing in reality as THE Pisces personality and the same goes for all the zodiac sun signs. Your sun sign is an archetype, a keynote but of course it is not and never could be the whole story.
Pisces combines imagination with determination, charm with depth, and at times there is a certain passivity, even inertia, which may actually serve them very well at times, but may in some cases degenerate into a trap or a kind of darkness involving depression, alcohol or other substance misuse.
These individuals are talented, natural artists or musicians. They are famously loyal once committed, compassionate and sensitive.
Pisces has steel. This doesn’t get mentioned much, hardly ever, if at all, but Pisces has a quiet steel. They may tire, but they endure, and try taking them on, they may not say much, but watch their face harden, and, should you cross the line once too often, again, they may not say much, but you are gone.
Their instincts are kindly, and they have a soft spot for the underdog. Where they demonstrate a lack of proper consideration for others, or undue stubbornness, it is not due to any lack of goodwill, but because they are not paying attention, too focused on their inner preoccupations.
Pisces needs variety, and structure must allow them room for a degree of autonomy. Many police officers, arbitrators and judges are born under Pisces, as well as artists and musicians. Administrative work, although Pisces can do it, is really not their sort of thing by and large.
Pisces can make excellent and approachable leaders of small teams, loyal to their staff. They will take on injustice, take on those superior in status, but Pisces, unlike, say Aquarius, confines their remit to action on an individual basis. Pisces are not temperamentally disposed to mount group actions, campaigns or crusades unless perhaps, they are early Pisces, born on the Aquarius cusp, but the later subjects of this sign, born close to the Aries cusp, are very much the ‘doers’ of Pisces.
Pisces is brave but their physical energy must be guarded. It can be erratic, and once depleted, is not always easily restored. If they are prone to headaches at the back of the head, there may be related bladder infections or other hidden issues. Pisces needs longer to recuperate from illnesses than some other signs. It needs plenty of rest, music and relaxation time near to rivers, ponds and sea.
Weaknesses – Depending on their other planetary placements, Pisces may be prone to falling prey to either wishful thinking, or gloom or unhealthy lifestyle habits, especially when struggling to recover and regroup from setbacks. Lacking a clear sense of purpose or direction, Pisces can drift loose from their cord, becoming detached and living too much in their own imaginary world.
Dang. I meant to post this in November and forgot. I’ll blame it on Brexit. Why not.
Is there a missing thirteenth sign in the astrological zodiac? NASA, astronomers and mainstream media suggest there is, trotting out this story every few years, to the frustration of Tropical western astrology scholars and practitioners. Sidereal (eastern) astrologers may agree with NASA, but Tropical (western) astrologers absolutely do not.
So what’s all this about?
It hinges on the confusing of zodiac signs with the constellations after which they were named, treated them as mutually interchangeable which they are not.
There are 12 signs in astrology. Modern astronomy records 88 constellations covering the southern and northern hemispheres of Earth’s sky.
Thirteen of these constellations cross or touch the ecliptic – the trajectory of the Sun’s apparent path across the sky as seen from Earth.
These include the 12 constellations that inspired the names of the 12 zodiac signs plus a thirteenth constellation– Ophiuchus (Oaf-ih-YOU-kus)
Astronomers and NASA have presented this thirteenth constellation, Ophiuchus, as the thirteenth sign of the zodiac, while also pointing out that the zodiac itself…the section of sky directly overhead as viewed from Earth- has changed from when the ancient Babylonian astrologers first viewed it, so that, claims NASA, the generally accepted dates for the zodiac signs as supplied in horoscopes are now a month out of alignment.
change in the skies has been the result of an effect called precession. The
gravitational pull of the Moon and the Sun causes the Earth to ‘wobble’ and as the
Earth orbits around the sun; a different constellation appears behind it each
the zodiac signs have remained in a
fixed position, and their dates have remained the same, varying only by a day
or two here and there, the constellations have drifted.
Based on this, astronomers have suggested the new astrological zodiac should more correctly look like this, with these new dates:
20 Jan – 16 Feb
•Aquarius: 16 Feb – 11 March
•Pisces: 11 March – 18 April
•Aries: 18 April – 13 May
•Taurus: 13 May – 21 June
•Gemini: 21 June – 20 July
•Cancer: 20 July – 10 Aug
•Leo: 10 Aug – 16 Sept
•Virgo: 16 Sept – 30 Oct
•Libra: 30 Oct – 23 Nov
•Scorpio: 23 – 29 Nov
•Ophiuchus: 29 Nov – 17 Dec
•Sagittarius: 17 Dec – 20 Jan
So you thought you were a Taurus sun sign, says NASA. No, actually, you are an Aries subject. So you thought you were an Aries sun sign? No, you are Pisces. So you thought you were a Sagittarius? No, you are Ophiuchus, and so on.
Whoa. But let’s not get too excited. As astronomers are quick to point out, astronomy is not astrology. And that works both ways.
First let’s take a brief look at the astronomy.
The Astronomy and the Constellation of Ophiuchus
Ophiuchus ([Oaf-ih-YOU-kus) is one of the largest constellations but in general the least well known, straddling the celestial equator northwest of the centre of the Milky Way, near the constellations Aquila, Serpens, and Hercules, and opposite Orion, the southern section lying between Scorpius to the west and Sagittarius to the east. Below Ophiuchus, down to the right, look out for a bright reddish star, Antares in Scorpio, for help in confirming that you have found it.
Right now -July- is the best time to see it in the northern hemisphere, mid-winter in the southern hemisphere. Hence this story is in the news again right now.
Its name comes from the Greek Ὀφιοῦχος Ophioukhos; “serpent-bearer,” and it is commonly represented as a man grasping a snake. In medieval Islamic astronomy the constellation was known as ‘Al-Ḥawwa,’ “the snake-charmer.” It used to be called Serpentius, when the constellation counted more stars, including the constellation of Serpens, representing the snake itself. Marking the head of Ophiuchus, Alpha Ophiuchi has an older, Arabic name: Rasalhague, the “Head of the Snake Charmer”.
Ophiuchus contains notable features and objects, including Kepler’s Supernova, or Kepler’s Star, named for German astronomer Johannes Kepler.
It was by far the brightest star in the sky for over 3 weeks during 1604 and actually Kepler wasn’t the first to note the supernova, due to cloudy conditions, but he made observations over the course of an entire year and wrote about the “new star in the foot of Ophiuchus”.
continued visible for 18 months, and its remnants are still studied today, still
the most recent supernova to be observed with the naked eye.
ancient Greeks, the constellation represented the god Apollo struggling
with a huge snake that guarded the Oracle of Delphi.
Later myths identified Ophiuchus with Laocoon, the tragic Trojan priest of Poseidon, who warned his fellow Trojans about the Greek’s wooden horse, and together with his sons, was killed by a pair of sea-serpents sent by Poseidon to shut him up, because clearly, Poseidon was on the side of the Greeks, or else under orders from Zeus, or else Laocoon had already annoyed him in some other way, and you know, nothing less than death by giant sea-snake would do.
Pluto (Hades) complained to Jupiter (Zeus) that Asclepius was interfering with death, an act of hubris which upset the natural order, and meant the end of the circle of life, with no room for new life.
Immortality would be a terrible evil. Life itself would die, stagnated, and Jupiter (Zeus) duly put a stop to it by killing Asclepius, hurling a lightning thunderbolt straight at his head, giving him an instant perm.
Apollo was, rather understandably, we may agree, furiously upset, “you zapped my son you b*stard!” Jupiter tried to comfort him by placing Asclepius in the heavens to honour his good works, and the rod of Asclepius remains the symbol of western medicine to this day.
The rod of Asclepius is not be confused with the Cadeuceus, a symbol of medicine, but also of trade. The cadeuceus is assciated with Mercury, and has not one but two snakes twined round the staff, and it has wings.
So, is Ophiuchus the thirteenth zodiac sign? Or does your zodiac sign stay the same?
If you are born between 29th November and 17th December, NASA, other astronomers and Sidereal astrologers may argue that your zodiac sun sign is technically Ophiuchus.
Key personality traits:
Humanitarian* Poetic* Hungry for knowledge* Intuitive* Psychic*Intense *Likes bright colours *High achievers *Prone to harbouring enemies without realizing *Lucky (so long as the enemies don’t succeed, obviously)
These are, not surprisingly, a mix of classic Scorpio and Sagittarius attributes in this profile.
But- there is a But here. And it is a blooming big BUT.
What astronomy is failing to recognize is the logic of the system which is the very basis of western (Tropical) astrology, and which makes a key distinction between the positions at any given time of the constellations themselves, and the zodiac signs named after them.
The signs of the zodiac as we know them today are based on Ptolemy’s twelve-fold division of the ecliptic, designed so that each sign spans 30° of celestial longitude, or roughly the distance the Sun travels in a month. 12 was a cleaner, tidier number to work with than was 13.
Ptolemy aligned these divisions with the seasons so that the March
equinox always falls on the boundary between Pisces and Aries, whereas Sidereal (Vedic)
astrology is based on the constellations themselves, as was western astrology
way back at the time of the Babylonians, whose data Ptolemy worked with.
Tropical western astrology, with its 12 associated zodiac signs is a static,
modelled system based NOT on the constellations themselves, but on the wheel of
the seasons which also accord the signs of the zodiac their personalities, but the idea of the ‘missing’
thirteenth sign is nothing new.
“It was developed by Hipparchus in 130 BC,” says astrologer, Susan Miller, “but you don’t get your characteristics from the constellations. You get them from the planets, from the sun and moon. We measure everything by the degree to which the earth is rotated around the sun. So if you’re born at the beginning of the zodiac, which corresponds to the spring equinox and typically falls on March 20, you’re at the 0º point—or the point at which the sun is crossing directly over the earth’s Equator. If we didn’t have names like Virgo or Gemini we’d have to walk around saying, `Hi, I’m a 136º,’ and I’d say, `Oh, really? Well I’m a 352º and so on.”
NASA’s supposed debunking may be logical in strictly astronomical terms. But that’s astronomy. It has nothing to do with western Tropical astrology as practiced today, and would only matter if the timing of the signs relied upon being tied to the actual positions of the constellations.
But they do not, and your zodiac sign, also known as your sun sign still stands, both as it is and where it is, based on the principle and according to the system on which it was first described.
“Tonight is the first full moon of the new year, nicknamed the Wolf Moon. As winter bit down, hungry wolves came down to the villages in search of food.”
January and February is wolf mating season, and their howls haunted the nights more than usual, both in Europe and in North America. This nickname was shared by Europeans and Native Americans alike, though this full moon has other nicknames too, including the Snow Moon and Ice Moon.
“Tonight’s lunar eclipse full moon in Cancer rises at 15:50 GMT (UK) or 2:21 ET and sets at 07.53 GMT (UK) Last night’s almost-full moon was spectacular. Excited cat playing & pouncing on things. This ‘watery’ lunar event typically signifies big changes at home. A lettinggo.”
That evening I said to Il Matrimonio, “I wonder who we will be hearing about tomorrow, who has ‘let go and left home’?”
Very many people will have ‘let go and left home’ of course. 2 people go out of this world every second and 4 come in, or if we want to be statistically exact, 1.8 go out, and 4.20 come in.
“The unborn are banging on the gates of the dock. What’s the limit on the shipping lanes?”- KT Kearns
But who would we be hearing about?
Which crab would quit his rock-pool?
Who would the wolf moon carry away in tonight’s meteor shower? (The Quadrantids)
It was the Sultan of Oman, Qaboos bin Said Al- Said, 79, a ruler for 50 years, ally of the UK and US and the longest ruling monarch in the Arab world.
Publicly at least, apart from three years of marriage which ended in divorce, after which his wife remarried, he lived to all intents and purposes as a hermit (crab) But his personal life has remained entirely private, protected by his shell of court and state.
Qaboos bin Said Al -Said
Excerpts from an Obituary in the Middle East Eye: (Link provided below)
“The sultan took the throne of an extremely underdeveloped country with a history of civil conflict and oversaw its transformation into a politically stable middle-income state during his half-century reign. Under a model of modernising absolute monarchy, he largely managed to steer Oman away from the extremes of consumerism of neighbouring Dubai and the religious conservatism of Saudi Arabia.
The concentration of political power and wealth in the sultan’s hands, combined with the absence of a clear route to succession, had led to fears that there could be a leadership crisis following his death.
The appointment of Haitham bin Tariq, Oman’s culture minister and the 65-year-old cousin of the late sultan, on Saturday appeared to put to rest lingering uncertainty over the country’s succession process.
Under Qaboos, political parties were banned and laws of lese-majesty created an all-pervasive system of surveillance and repression that ensured no organised opposition could emerge.
Still, there is no doubting the genuine affection in which the sultan was held by many Omanis and expatriates, seen as a visionary leader who had secured the welfare of Omanis and expatriates alike by leading the nation through its modernisation, and leaving a legacy that his successor will be hard put to equal.
The Sultan inherited a conservative, highly religious country riven by armed insurrection and tribal divisions, Valeri wrote, and over several decades, reduced the influence of the tribes, while incorporating their leaders in the political process.
Qaboos also championed the advance of women, gradually opening the way for many to enter education and the labour market in increasing numbers, despite Oman being a conservative society that traditionally segregated women in domestic roles.
Qaboos was also a big supporter of the arts with his government sponsoring the country’s first societies of artists and traditional music. As a lover of classical music, he played the organ and the lute, composed music and founded the Gulf’s first symphony orchestra in 1985, its players recruited from the towns and villages of Oman.
Qaboos was careful to maintain diplomatic ties even with those states, such as Iran and Iraq, which were in conflict with his western allies. As he explained to an Egyptian newspaper in 1985: “There is ultimately no alternative to peaceful coexistence between Arabs and Persians, nor to a minimum of agreement in the region.”
One of the world’s longest-serving heads of state, Qaboos began tentative moves toward a constitutional monarchy in the late 1990s and early 2000s, with the introduction of an elected consultative assembly and municipal council elections. However at the time of his death he remained head of state and prime minister, and commander in chief of the armed forces.
Qaboos’s successor will face the growing question of how to quell rising expectations of a new generation of internet-savvy young people no longer satisfied with the repressive paternalism that prevailed under half a century of Qaboos.
Now. Here is a very interesting piece of information, linking the Full Moon In Cancer with the Sultan Qaboos, or at least, I find this interesting. If not downright spooky.
Your Moon sign is an expression of your temperament and style of doing things. The natal chart of the Sultan shows that he was born with his Sun in deep and secretive, watery Scorpio and his Moon in the sign of almost equally deep and secretive sign of Cancer the Crab.
That was one enigmatic man of deep waters. That was one tough shell.
Two tough shells.
Now consider this image of the Moon card from The Gilded Tarot Royale, from the illustrator Ciro Marchetti, and the full moon uniting wolf and crab.
The Sun card in Tarot foresees sunny weather at its most literal. It’s respite from care, the gift of the moment, childhood and sometimes the imminence of birth. It’s also travel, particularly to hot places. It is the return of the sun after the winter solstice. It is the zenith of the sun in the summer solstice. It is glory.
Reversed it’s the setting sun, delays and lesser joys, the passing away of childhood, nostalgia, beautiful, bittersweet twilight. It may mean getting something less than you hoped for, but what you get is still something to be happy for.
The Star card on the other hand, can and often has indicated a recovery from depression, sickness and despair, a guiding light, someone sees a way ahead, they couldn’t see before.
Klytie was a figure in Ancient Greek mythology who fell in love with the sun god, Apollo. Each day…
Did the Norse celebrate Halloween? Plus a message from the runes for you…
The word ‘rune’ comes from an old
Norse word ‘runa’ meaning a secret. The runes were the 24letters of the ancient
Norse alphabet, known as the Elder Futhark, but the runes were also used for
psychic divination and in magical work. Many words in modern English (eg: Fee, Day,
Answer, Need, Lake, Hail, Ice) derive
from these ancient letters, which in turn came from language roots shared with
Public Domain: The Elder Futhark Alphabet
What we know of Norse Mythology comes largely from
the Eddas, two collections of writings from assorted anonymous writers, dating
around 1250 CE.
According to the elder of these, the Poetic Edda, the
greatest god, Odin, obtained the secrets of the runes via Yggrasil the Great
Ash Tree which connected the Nine Worlds of the Cosmos. Odin hung upside down nine days and nights on Yggrasil, not eating and
drinking, tormented by thirst and a self-inflicted wound in his side, until at
last he received a vision of the runes, and reached inwards to seize them.
He studied further with his wife, the goddess Freya, pictured here driving her chariot drawn by cats. Freya was the most powerful practitioner and teacher of shamanic Norse magic, just as in real life Norse society, a war chieftain’s wife was given the job of being a veleda – prophesying the outcome of any military action, and performing magic to help her husband succeed. One does not like the imagine the rows that might have followed when he didn’t.
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 Álfblót – 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.
Since the dead were sometimes referred to as ‘elves,’ Álfblót was rather like a
pagan Day of the Dead.
Like the modern Halloween,
Álfblót originally marked the general end of autumn, although it may
technically be celebrated on any day around this time. However in recent years,
it has been predominantly practised on or close to 31st October
Traditionally, Álfblót almost
certainly involved an animal sacrifice, (blood) Records suggest this may even
have been a (highly valuable) bull. It was intended as a sacrifice to the elves,
asking for protection from the ancestors. Connected with this, the elves were also
associated with fertility.
A chief difference here is,
unlike Halloween/Samhain, Álfblót was not a community celebration. It was a
private ritual performed at the homesteads. Only local people were welcome, and
strangers were not permitted to take part or even watch.
Is A Rune Reading Done?
There are various ways of reading the runes but our
reader has used one of the oldest known methods. The reader has drawn a small
circle on a piece of black cloth. The runes (pieces of polished, engraved
haematite) are placed in their protective pouch, and shaken. The reader asks
her question, “what is the message from the runes for the subjects of the
cardinal Fire Sign, Aries?’ and so on, repeating this process for each sign of
the zodiac. Then she scatters the runes across the cloth. Which rune or runes
have fallen within the circle? If more than one has landed there, which has
landed most centrally? These are the runes containing your message for this
mysterious time of year, All Hallows Eve – Halloween when the veil is thinnest
It is important to
note, as a matter of historical accuracy, the Norse rune seers did not work
with the signs of the zodiac. They thought in terms of natural forces and
creatures, the mystic power of the natural elements: Earth, Air, Fire and Water,
but our modern rune reader will here do both.
for the Earth Signs
– your rune is Ehwaz (Horse)
Advice: This is a positive rune of steady, if gradual
progress, and indicates changes for the better coming up around the end of
October if not actual travel. Ehwaz
urges physical movement. Go walking or running or dancing. Whatever you like,
but move that body. The horse represents a vehicle, and that vehicle is you,
but may refer to your means of transport, a car, bus, motorbike. Pay all due
proper care and attention to vehicle maintenance. This is a time for teamwork, pulling
together as one at work and at home, but you may also feel a need to start
something new on your own, to expand your horizons and make new contacts.
– your rune is Uruz (The Auroch)
The Auroch is an ancestor of the first domesticated cattle, a fearsome animal
known for its courage and great physical power. Here, the Auroch is you. You must take action if you want to turn cherished
hopes into reality. Do not underestimate yourself, and your power to forge
ahead and overcome obstacles. Show you really mean business, a way is cleared. An
extra application of willpower will pay off dividends, and you also excel at
detail. But- there is a ‘but’…you need to pace yourself. Coughs and sneezes
spread diseases. Avoid crowds. Take proper care of yourself this month.
– your rune is Kenaz (Beacon)
the day, set the alarm a little earlier, be a morning person if you aren’t
already, and see how that works out for you. Kenaz is
a fire rune, and the rune of sunrise. It brings a steady light and heat to bear,
with change for the better. Kenaz shines a new light on things and is THE rune
of study and learning. Learn something new. This is the rune of artists and
craftspeople, welding inspiration and skill, and regarding romance. Kenaz is a
masculine rune with charisma. You may meet a new man or make a fresh start with
an ‘old’ one. Kenaz is a positive, protecting rune.
for the Air Signs
– your rune is Laguz (Water, Lake)
Advice: Change is happening in you, deep down and hidden, maybe even from yourself, though you may remember vivid dreams and feel these contain a meaningful message, and probably, they do. Work with the flow as far as you practically can. Don’t fight it and try not to over-think things. Do what you need to do, but without over-working, and for optimum performance, stay adequately hydrated. Nutrients in sea salts, bath salts and sea-foods may be especially beneficial to you at this time.
– your rune is Perthro (Sanctuary)
Advice: This rune is about mysteries and secrets, occult abilities, sometimes a religious or spiritual belief. You may have vivid dreams or psychic experiences. There may be some strange experiences this month. Hidden things may come to light, which you may not entirely welcome. Your home is your sanctuary, a place in which only trusted friends should be invited. Guard and protect its security, comfort, happiness and privacy. But don’t hide in there. No hiding from an inconvenient truth, either. If something isn’t working, then it hasn’t been working for a long time. Face it. What have you been refusing to face? How can you make it work better?
– your rune is Eiwaz (The Yew)
Advice: The rune of the Yew tree is a symbol of age, endurance, death, and eternal life. The path is hard at times, but do not fear the future. You are strong and adaptable, and an honest man can be relied on for help. The evergreen Yew is about transformation and testing, stripping away that which is worn out, making way for strong new growth. This is a good time to review what is nourishing to you and what is not. Aches and pains? Investigate, hydrate, perhaps adding bath salts to your bath, adding extra oils to the diet, fish oils, olive oil, flaxseed oil etc. But above all this month, get rid of junk, review and renew.
for the Fire Signs
your rune is Gyfu (Partnership, Gift)
Advice: This rune is about give and take, love and romance leading to marriage, or partnership and contract. X marks the spot and the symbol of the kiss comes from this rune. You honour your obligations and tend to be generous. But you too, are owed obligations. Watch those who don’t keep their end of the bargain, and if they give less, then you give less. People depend on you, and it is not lazy or selfish to keep up your own strength, and rest when you need to.
–your rune is Ingwaz (Earth God)
This is the rune of all
things masculine and also the warmth of home and the hearth fire. Stay close to
your roots. It is a good idea to keep things simple as possible this month,
avoiding any unnecessary complications, and no upping the ante. This is a good
time to tie up a few loose ends on something, and get ready to move on. There’s
a lot on your plate, and a lot of work to do, but you need to put your feet up
at home, and in the longer run that is a necessity, not a luxury.
– your rune is Dagaz (Dawn or Day)
Advice: A new day dawns. Look and you will see
opportunities as well as hurdles. This month looks like a good time to embark
on a new enterprise, or a journey. There may be a major shift or breakthrough
of some kind, and it is almost certainly
for the better, especially if you have been stuck in a rut, or unwell, or
struggling with a stubborn problem that just won’t go away. It can be resolved.
Research brings new and useful information to light. Dagaz promises brighter
times not far ahead.
for the Water Signs
– your rune is Mannaz (Mankind)
Advice: Mannaz is the rune of human intelligence and the rational mind. This rune is particularly beneficial if you are contemplating academic studies, skills based tests and any contests of an intellectual nature. This is a powerful rune of law and order. Proceed in an orderly, organised fashion, keeping others on board. This is a great rune for networking and getting support and co-operation on shared tasks. You behave well towards others and are well liked in return, and this runes holds you protected by them.
– your rune is Thurisaz (Thorn, Giant)
Advice: Change is afoot, and this may mean some tricky moments. It is best not to start fights, but if you do, then you had better finish them properly. This is a challenging rune of attack and defence, but is also a protecting rune, used in protection magic, and lucky rune for for study and exams. For couples trying for babies, it may be of interest to note that this rune is particularly associated with male fertility and male health. For many Cancer subjects there will be some kind of welcome news to do with something worked for very hard.
–Your rune is Berkano (Birch)
This is the rune of the family home, all
things feminine, and birth, and it bodes well for your happiness, prosperity,
and the blossoming of a creative endeavour. It may also suggest a new love
coming into your life, sometimes foreshadowing birth literally, and motherhood.
Beyond this, it speaks of personal growth. A
child becomes a ‘mother’. Even if your own home life growing up was not always easy
or happy, you can ‘mother’ whatever in life you most deeply care about. You can
be the birch tree. You can be the start of something happy, and that is also
happiness. Home is where the heart is, but you can be your own best friend, and
right at home with yourself, wherever you are.
The rune crone calls down upon all readers the Alfblot blessing and protection of the mighty protection rune Elhaz, the Elk or Sedge.
Katie-Ellen@ktlncartomancer· Will it be a hung parliament? Let’s look through the lens of playing card cartomancy. No opinions. Just cards. Shuffle blind, draw 5 cards, red/black, central card key. 10 Diamonds, Queen D, Ace Clubs (reps GE & a NO answer) 4 Spades (ugh) Ace Diamonds (future = new start).
Let’s look back to a previous reading on this blog, posted 1 October 2019 in which I used pendulum divination, asking this question and getting this response below……
“Will there be a General Election BEFORE the UK leaves?
The pendulum is swinging to NO. But I don’t know. I keep thinking of that Ace of Clubs card. I don’t see one occurring in September or October and that timing would be exceedingly tight. But, swinging the pendulum again, there’s something here, suggesting however unlikely, there may be one either concluded or announced before Christmas.” – (posted 1 October 2019)
Time permitting I will be posting further before the Election. Meantime, I find it curious that throughout these nearly three and a half years since the referendum, I have not detected any consistent signal for a clean WTO- style exit, nor the date.
Brexit presents itself through my cards as a series of steps. not a definitive event, though certain themes have been consistent during the past three and a half years.
It did look possible, if dubious, throughout September, that we would have a Halloween Brexit from which I deduce that the PM did absolutely sincerely intend to keep that promise, by whatever means. The chances were consistently detected as ranging between 2/5 and 3/5 .
For me, a definite yes, usually shows itself as a 4/5 or a 5/5. But I wasn’t getting a 0/5 either, or a 1/5.
Hedging its bets? Possibly, but the reader has no conscious control whatsoever as to which cards are drawn. The Tarot was perhaps mirroring the feeling and expectations of the collective psyche. But then something shifted and on 13 October, in a prediction written for astrologer Jessica Adams in which I was looking ahead to the month of November (you will be able to read it HERE on Tuesday 5 November) I said, based on 2 Tarot cards, that I was not being shown that the UK had left the EU today, 1 November, BUT it was still coming, events were moving on apace.
After such a long, acrimonious parliamentary stalemate, and bearing in mind deep concerns about the content of the proposed withdrawal agreement, perhaps this new general election campaign is to be regarded as today’s best good news.
I will have clearly have to have a stab at an Election prognostication well before we get there on 12 December if only for the laffs. How we are all laughing.
I still feel, based on my cards, that Brexit will happen. Asking this question, consulting with the cards, two cards have made multiple appearances since the 2016 Referendum.
The World Card has been one of these, Major Arcana 21, and in plain English this translates as the wide world, literally (WTO/global trade) and in terms of the Brexit process, project completion and the start of a whole new cycle.
The dates though. The dates. The figure on this card from the Legacy of the Divine Tarot deck, illustrated by Ciro Marchetti, is reaching out his arms, spanning the Scorpion of Halloween and somewhere between Aquarius and the Fish of Pisces, late February-late March. But is it 2020 or a continuum into 2021?
In other readings, I have noted many appearances of Leo the Lion for some reason I don’t understand, indicating a key development in late July 2020. I’ll have to watch that space.
Divination suggests the future prospects for Britain are actually pretty darn good. Expansive, while at the same time grounded on home soil. Cards of poverty, or war, do not figure in the picture, not because all in the garden is rosy, but they are not the defining destination feared by so many.
Again and again I have asked, what is the ‘destiny’ for Britain and drawn the same card over and over, the Nine of Coins suggesting a slow gathering momentum, a juggernaut, coming decade of hard work and economic achievement.
This card specifically suggests notable prospects including but not limited to financial services, manufacturing, horticulture/agriculture, farmer’s markets and a surge in demand for local produce luxury goods, the heritage industry and hoteliers. I would be happier to see a fish leaping in that pond, though at least there is a pond, and that is clearly vital business pending, fishing rights and fisheries, significant by a silence in the noise around the current withdrawal bill passed by this Parliament. This bill, may presumably, may be superseded by events.
There are 77 other cards I could have drawn, asking to see the future face of Britain. I could have drawn the pauper’s card, the 5 of Coins. I could have drawn The Tower, crash, ruin, war. I could have drawn The Devil, enslavement, entrapment, helpless rage and civil war. Or even the end of the world as we know it.
I have given my cards so many chances these last three years to show me any of these terrible tidings, and must conclude Brexit will somehow be resolved, and Britain should look to its people, and also look up the stars and horizons including Europe and beyond, and have more ambition, looking to the lessons of its history, which are all about the lessons for its future. It is easy to see that Brexit might not happen at all, and the Establishment has demonstrated an absolute determination that it will not.
I can only say that rightly or wrongly, I still detect, based on divination, that the UK will come out of the EU -which is not Europe-and when it does, it is because it must, or else be shattered, and be seen to be shattered at the very heart of its constitutional integrity, and with it, national and international integrity and repute.
What outcome card do I get for the Conservatives in the upcoming GE? The Fool. This is a major arcana card, number 0 and 22, the beginning and end of the ouroboros serpent, favourable card, and signifies new beginnings. It is also the birth sign card of Gemini subject, Boris Johnson.
What card do I get for Labour? The Eight of Swords. A minor arcana card and a deeply unfavourable card of getting stuck. I feel there are some good things in the Labour manifesto, but I feel what many previous Labour voters feel, and this card reflects it absolutely, that Jeremy Corbyn has been taken hostage by one section of the party to the wider detriment of the whole, and I sense he feels this, and is deeply uneasy, but can’t see the way out, or a way back to his party’s traditional heartlands. He too is a Gemini subject, so in theory, I could have drawn the Fool for him too, as the Gemini leader of the Labour party.
What outcome card for the Lib Dems? The Page of Cups? This is a court card, a favourable card; a bud, an offer, a young person, but it tends to be correspondingly minor in scale, except as the start of something that could become very big…but not for a while. (Jo Swinson is an Aquarius subject, and ‘her’ major arcana card would therefore be number 17, The Star)
There are other parties in play of course. I’ll hope to look at all this again in more detail before we get to voting time.
Most of us know our sign of the zodiac or sun sign, but where did get its name from, and what does it look like in the night sky? Read on for the story of Libra…
(seek to) Balance
Lower back, buttocks, kidneys
September birthdays. Opal- October birthdays
Number: 6 (community, childhood)
Domain: Justice from the Rider-Waite Tarot
Libra (and I say Lee-bra too, like most people, but technically, it is correctly pronounced Ly-bra as in Library) is a small but distinct constellation next to the constellation Virgo in the evening sky. It looks like a lopsided diamond, or a small child’s drawing of a house, and is visible in the northern hemisphere between April and July.
Libra is most visible directly overhead at midnight in June, and is 29th in size of the 88 constellations.
Public Domain: Libra
Libra is bordered by the head of Serpens to the north, Virgo to the northwest, Hydra (the biggest known constellation of all) to the southwest, Lupus to the south, Scorpius to the east and the serpent bearer, Ophiuchus to the northeast.
Libra, like Cancer, is fairly faint from Earth in comparison with other constellations, and contains no spectacular first magnitude stars, but it contains a very old galaxy cluster, possibly around 10 billion years old, which is about the same age as our The Milky Way, our own galaxy.
There is a red dwarf star ,Gliese 581, in this galaxy, with three orbiting planets, one of which may possibly be suitable for life. This system is about 20 light years from Earth.
Libra used to be regarded, not as a constellation in its own right, but as part of neighbouring Scorpio and Virgo. This legacy remains in the names of its brightest stars. The brightest star in Libra is a binary star about 77 light years from Earth. α Librae. Its common name is Zubenelgenubi, meaning “the Southern Claw” in Arabic. The second-brightest star in the constellation of Libra is β Librae, known as Zubeneschamali, from the Arabic for “The Northern Claw.”
Public Domain: the Scorpionic Scales, from
Since 2002, technically, the Sun has actually appeared in the constellation of Libra from October 31 to November 22. But signs of the zodiac are not dependent on the positions of the actual constellations. Western or tropical astrology, which is based on seasonal phenomena, not the actual positions of the constellations, which remain the basis of Eastern or Sidereal astrology.
The Sun did used to be in the constellation of Libra at the northern autumnal equinox (c. September 23) to on or about October 23, when the hours of night and daylight were the same- hence the Libran key concept of natural balance, and the change of the seasons is still marked by the first days of the zodiac sign of Libra, 23 September.
But Western or Tropical astrology was designed as a construct based on arithmetic, not on current astronomy. The signs of the zodiac were inspired, modelled and named according to the heavenly bodies, but actually based on seasonal phenomena, these being presented as an arithmetic model, dividing into 12 pieces of a pie, the circle of the visible skies of the zodiac as seen from Earth, as calculated by the Greek mathematician, astronomer and astrologer Ptolemy in the 2C AD.
Mythology and History
Libra was once
included as part of Scorpio, and was known in Babylonian astronomy as MUL
Zibanu (the “scales” or “balance”) with an
alternative name, the Claws of the Scorpion. In ancient Greece Libra was also
seen as the Scorpion’s Claws.
The scales were held sacred to the Babylonian sun god Shamash, who was also the patron of truth and justice, and ever since these very early times, Libra has been associated with law, fairness and civility.
Libra was first recognised as a constellation in its own right in ancient Rome, when it began to represent the scales held by Astraea, also known as Dike, who in Greek mythology was actually associated with Virgo. In ancient times, the stars of Libra, The Scales, were also intermingled with those of Scorpius by the Greeks, but were always considered as a separate group by the Romans.
According to the writer Manilius, Roman judges were born under the sign of Libra. The Moon was said to be in Libra when Rome was founded, in a historical passage, which states “qua condita Roma.”
The start of Libra starts with the autumn equinox, when days and nights are almost of equal length, i.e. balanced, and Roman astrologers considered that the constellation of Libra represented the scales held by Astraea, the ‘star maiden,’ goddess of Justice and innocence. Astraea was a daughter of the Titans, god of dusk, and Eos, goddess of dawn. She dwelt on earth alongside humans during the Golden Age of Man, but the Iron Age dawned, bringing war and wickedness, and Astraea could not abide this, nor the injustice of the killing of the bull who pulled the plough, until, sometime during the Bronze Age, she left earth for the skies, where she transformed into the constellation Virgo.
Here is pause for thought. This is all rather confusing. We are discussing Libra, not Scorpio, not Virgo, but Libra is a subtle sign, a comparatively newly created one, pulled somewhat, and aspects of it shared between neighbouring Scorpio and Virgo.
The seasonal story is straightforward. Libra is the autumn equinox in the northern hemisphere. But the mythos is complicated, due to the merging of several mythological personas, Babylonian, Greek and Roman. Astraea was also known as Dike, goddess of human justice (where Themis was goddess of natural justice) To the Romans she was Justitia. She was the protector of fair judgement, and continues embodied in the blindfolded figure of justice used in our own law courts today. Virgo and Libra go together, and so do Libra and Scorpio. This close relationship was echoed in the sky, where Libra, the symbolic representation of Dike, lies alongside Virgo. According to the myth, Astraea will one day return to Earth, bringing a new Golden Age.
The Libra Archetype
Libra is one of the three zodiac air signs, the
others being Gemini and Aquarius.
Libra is the only sign that is not
represented by a human or animal, but the scales signify the collective and
enduring human hunger for justice, as well as Libra’s own especially keen
personal need for balance, order, and equality. Many astrologers view Libra as an
especially lucky sign because it occurs during the peak of the year when the
rewards of hard work are harvested.
Libra is suave,
clever and extremely easy to like. The classic Libra subject has charm and can
be a great listener with sharp observation skills and acute perception.
Because Venus, the goddess of love, rules Libra, the Libra subject is
especially, even acutely sensitive to beauty in anything, whether it is a
person, nature, art, or music. They dislike loud noises, cruelty, nastiness,
and vulgarity, as they are naturally extremely civilised people. Born
diplomats, Libras try to cooperate and compromise with everyone around them to
create a tranquil atmosphere. They can sometimes be a little tiring to be with
as they are constantly re-assessing and adjusting their thinking, and can be
more changeable even than Gemini.
Public Domain: Venus, the ruler of
Libra, The Birth of Venus by Botticelli.
Libras may show negative Scorpio traits just the same as a Scorpio subject. They may be touchy, thin-skinned, and tend not to handle criticism as dispassionately as they dispense it. They like to be the centre of attention and may resent it when they are not. Libra can be jealous, moody, and an expert practitioner of passive aggression, or go further as the ‘iron fist in a velvet glove’ – smoothly vengeful, or even ruthless.
But- lovely Libra. Smiling, civilised, smoothie side up, what’s not to like?
“The Virgin with her sheaf belongs to Ceres,” The Astronomica, Manilius, 1st century AD.
Virgo is known as a sun sign or sign of the Zodiac, but what does the constellation look like in the night sky, and what’s the seasonal story behind it? Let’s investigate Virgo, Corn- Goddess of the Zodiac, also known as Shala, Ishtar, Demeter, Ceres...
Date: August 23-September 22
Symbol: The Virgin
Quality: Mutable (Sagittarius and Pisces are also Mutable, 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
Flowers: small bright flowers, clover, buttercup
Tarot card: The Hermit (introspection, perception, analysis, care for nature)
Source Wikipedia: The Hermit from the Rider-Waite Tarot deck
Virgo is the second-largest constellation in the sky after Hydra, and the largest constellation in the zodiac, located between Libra to the west and Leo to the east, and below the Big Dipper.
In the northern hemisphere, it is most visible in the evening sky in May- to late June. In the southern hemisphere, it can be seen in autumn and winter.
Find its brightest star, the brilliant-blue-white Spica, and you will work out the rest of Virgo with her feet pointing east.
It might seem a bit of a stretch, trying to picture a person from that photograph, but add in a few more of her stars, imagine her lounging, dangling a sheaf of wheat from one hand (Spica.)
And now you see her.
Author’s own image
Spica is a double star, brighter than our sun. Its name is from the Latin, meaning an ‘ear of grain’- or a sheaf of wheat.
It’s sometimes called ‘The Lonely One’ because it is so far from the others, and the astronomer and astrologer Ptolemy saw these stars as ruled by Venus and Mars respectively, mated together in a chaste, androgynous union, like the slightly remote purity of Virgo herself.
Vindemiatrix, ‘the Grape-Gatherer,’ seen at daylight, was once seen as a sign that now it was time to pick the grapes.
Galaxies: The Virgo Cluster
It’s mind-boggling to consider that our own Sun is just one star of the Milky Way, and the Milky Way is only one of a collection of galaxies known as The Local Group.
This contains three large spiral galaxies: the Milky Way, Andromeda, and the Triangulum Galaxy, and a few dozen dwarf galaxies. But The Local Group is just one member of the Virgo Cluster – a collection of 1200-2000 galaxies that stretch across 15 million light-years of space.
And the Virgo Cluster is just one cluster in the Virgo Supercluster.
Wiki Commons: the constellation of Virgo is especially rich in galaxies, with more than 1300 galaxies in the Virgo Cluster. One of these, NGC 4388, 60 million light-years away, is captured in this image, as seen by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope’s Wide Field Camera 3.
But if the constellation of Virgo is most visible in May in the northern hemisphere, why are the birthdates for the sign of the zodiac August 23-September 22nd?
Astronomy is not Astrology. The sky as we see it is called the celestial sphere: a giant blue ball that rotates around us (its rotation axis crosses the poles). The Sun appears to move along with this sphere every day, rising in the East and setting in the West, but it also appears to move, in this sphere, at a one-degree-a-day pace, on the contrary direction (West-East).
This annual motion is on a circle called Ecliptic, a great circle in relation to the Equator.
Now imagine a belt around this circle. This is the Zodiac. Ptolemy divided this 360-degree belt by 12 for the elegance of arithmetic, based on 12 constellations described by the Babylonians, ignoring a thirteenth constellation, Ophiuchus, so that a zodiac sign represents roughly a 30-degree chunk of this belt.
But the constellations have moved in the last two thousand years, and changed positions relative to Earth, owing to wobbling of the Earth on its axis; an effect known as precession.
The dates for the zodiac signs named after the zodiacal constellations, however, have remained the same, but this great fact of astronomy does not affect the validity of the dates of your Zodiac Sun sign as calculated by Ptolemy.
The exact dates of the Zodiac signs can vary by a day or two each year and are calculated by astronomers every year at sunrise on the day of the Spring Equinox.
History & Mythology
Public Domain: Virgo: Urania’s Mirror
Shala was an ancient Sumerian deity (later Babylonia, the area now known as southern Iraq and Kuwait) She was the goddess of grain -and also compassion. Why link these two things? Famine is suffering. A good harvest was seen as a blessing of the gods. What is planted in the spring must yield a crop in the autumn, or famine is likely to follow. Shala was married either to the fertility god, Dagon, or the storm god, Ishkur, or possibly both, with one as her consort. This is significant. Virgo the Virgin is not about a state of physical virginity – but refers more to an attitude; a slightly elusive and rather refined quality, male or female.
Shala was associated with the constellation of Virgo, and vestiges of symbolism associated with her continue, such as the star Spica, the ‘ear of grain’, even as the deity’s name changed from age to age, and culture to culture.
In 10th century BC, the Babylonians called part of this constellation, “The Furrow,” referring back to the goddess Shala, and the Shala Mons is a mountain on Venus named after her.
In Egyptian mythology, the sight of Virgo in the night sky was also associated with harvest time, and with the goddess Isis, while in Indian astrology, she was The Maiden, Kanya.
To the Greeks, she was the harvest goddess Demeter, also called Ceres, (the root of the word ‘cereal’) and also by association, her beloved daughter, Persephone.
When Hades abducted Persephone to live with him in the underworld, Demeter went into mourning. There was no harvest that year. People and livestock starved and Zeus, the king of gods, eventually intervened, insisting that Hades return Persephone to Demeter. But Zeus also stipulated that Persephone must not eat until her return, and Hades, not wanting to part with her, gave Persephone a pomegranate, knowing fine well how much she liked them, and she ate some of the seeds on her way home.
So Persephone went home to her mother, but because of the pomegranate she has to return to the underworld for four months every year, and then Demeter grieves; winter returns, and the land sleeps.
The Virgo Archetype – Personality
Virgos are practical but artistically gifted. They are hard workers who love to better themselves. They love to analyze, and their perceptiveness means that they can always find or create order within chaos. They are honest friends although, being extra discerning, and analytical, they might have a tendency to analyze you, pointing out your strengths and also your mistakes and weaknesses. This will probably be annoying, very, but it’s usually well-meant. They may also give great advice because of those same analytical abilities.
Their quest of self-improvement includes their appearance. They are perfectionists, highly concerned about the impression they give, but at the same time, they are very ready to help others, which can make them targets of those who wish to take advantage of them. Virgo is ruled by agile, communicative Mercury, and Virgo’s brain is in overdrive much of the time. These folks can do great things and get a lot done – if they don’t lose sight of the original vision, and get overly bogged down in non-important detail.
Update on a reading initially posted on this site May 2019, comments based on cards drawn last night, 10 PM, 30 September 2019. I will post the images later today. for readers interested in the cartomancy.
It is looking unlikely that Jeremy Corbyn will be PM after the next General Election, whenever that date will be. Still possible, certainly, but not likely.
It is looking unlikely that Jo Swinson will be be PM after the next General Election, whenever that date will be.
Of the two, Jeremy Corbyn seems to have the better chance.
Brexit, and the referendum vote to leave the EU bloc may seem almost dead in the water, but it isn’t. Despite repeated and further planned attempts to strangle it slowly and surely to death. A pro-Remain Parliament is dead set against it, and no longer making any bones about this, citing fears of a so- called No Deal (WTO) exit while, as evidenced by Jo Swinson’s letter to Mr Juncker trying to ensure there will be no deal by 31 October. The pro-EU element has a majority in Parliament, regardless of the mandate on which many Remain MP’s were originally elected, and seems to hold all the cards as of 14 September.
But Deal or No Deal, I don’t know more than anyone else, and certainly do not claim to. I am a card reader, not a politician, but looking at this through the lens of cartomancy, the twists and turns are far from done, and Brexit may still happen by that Oct 31 deadline. It is looking more likely it will not, and could slip then till Jan/Feb 2020, but it will still happen. This is the big picture. Brexit has now become a juggernaut loaded with constitutional dynamite, and chaos is the alternative to delivering on the referendum result of 2016. Too much has happened, and political reform is now required it seems, whatever the outcome, and whenever that definitive outcome is finally announced to an angry, weary nation in which no-one is happy and Mrs May’s three years as PM, with her ostensible attempts at compromise seem only to have muddied the waters, compounding the difficulties.
Let’s look back at the cards drawn in August and May.
Tweeted 20 August
#Cartomancy Will UK leave EU by/before 31 Oct 2019? Chance is higher than 3+/5. Read L-R. 8 Spades, stuck state. Joker Rx, ie, new PM. (Gemini) Crux card= 9 Hearts. Red suit indicates yes. King D and 9 D. Money talks last minute. Ace Clubs. A deal. New start. GE?
So then, what does it look like? Will there be a No Deal Brexit, ie, an exit on WTO terms? Will it be a rehashed Withdrawal Agreement?
The so-called No Deal departure is the anathema of many Remain voters and the preferred option of many, though by no means all Leave voters, whether these are Labour voters or Tory voters. Meanwhile the Brexit Party has demonstrated its muscle, not only in the EU Elections, but in the UK sufficient that, although the Leave vote was split in Radnorshire, the very splitting of that vote also demonstrated the power of the Brexit party, even though this worked against both the Tory Party and the Brexit Party, such that the Lib Dem candidate was selected.
Be that as it may, what cards do we get?
Does this look like a No Deal Brexit?
Not really. If it is a NO Deal departure, then there is a special European deal on the side. This is not looking like a straight WTO exit. Or if it is, there is also some kind of a special trade deal with the EU. No, this is a beast of some other form. Is it Leave and is it good news for the UK economy ?
Ultimately, yes. It looks that way. Yes for both, 5 Clubs and Queen of Diamonds.
This reading starts as a classic Line of Five spread, where the cards are read left-right like a storyboard. For a yes or no answer, my system is the classic colour system that says more reds than blacks = a yes answer. More blacks than red = a no answer.
How and why does this work in practice? It’s simply a convention of self-programming. I could do it the other way around, blacks are yes and reds are no, and that would work just as well. But this is how I have programmed myself to read them, and with much repetition, like learning to play an instrument, this is how it actually starts to work and deliver accurate results. Perhaps the brain builds new synapses.
The results will not be accurate every time, any more than with any other form of forecasting. Of course not, and prescience is not omniscience, or anything like it, but this is the basic mechanics of how card reading is done.
So, back to Brexit and what it will look like, what did we get?
1 red suit card
3 black suit cards
The short answer is, cartomancy suggests there will very likely be at least some kind of trade deal with the EU, so that it will not be a complete WTO exit.
Does that mean that it’s going to be a rehash of the Withdrawal Agreement then, presumably minus the Irish Backstop? BRINO? Brexit in Name only?
No, it doesn’t look like that either.
This is looking like a trade- only deal, so far as I can see, possibly because the Backstop issue is resolved adequately for Parliament(just) and Mrs Merkel feels she has obtained for EU members some adequate measure of economic surety.
Let’s look at the individual cards for further comment.
That one red suit card, the 8 of Hearts, is representing the status quo, and the power of the Remain lobby in Parliament.
The Joker– cue the catcalls here from those out of accord with the new PM, (says a former Labour voter)- but this is a destiny card, and does not simply describe an actual Joker or clown or buffoon. But if it did, then take another look at the Joker. See the smile. Watch the eyes. They are serious. So is the skill. As an opponent, he is not to be underestimated.
The Joker is a card of surprises. It is the most powerful card in the deck, symbolically. Turning points in a nation’s destiny. My deck contains two Jokers and both have made an appearance in this 9 card spread.
Astrologically speaking, and rather curiously, this is also the card of the new PM, Boris Johnson, as a Gemini subject three times over. The Joker is Gemini. It suggests that, whatever he does in the end, he is completely in earnest when he says he wants us out. And he is not afraid of the EU, unlike Mrs May, and where she had Ollie Robbins, he has Dominic Cummins, one to be knighted, the other held up to public opprobrium. Mr Johnson is intellectually and politically agile, mercurial even, and not averse to sleight of hand. This is meant neither as criticism or a compliment. The stakes are so high, the situation demands nothing less than utmost cunning, or as others would call it, utmost strategic thinking.
There is a saying, that if you love someone they can do no wrong, but if you don’t like someone they can do no right, and this clearly holds true, and has been setting the tone of public discourse since 2016, to little benefit. Where all civility has gone, violence will surely follow.
So, the next card. The central card in that top row. And we have the 2 Spades. Split. Severance. Divorce. This is a Brexit divorce, so if there is an element of ‘fudge’ or compromise, it may not be as significant, or be the trickery into indefinite entrapment that Leavers fear.
This is reinforced by the next card, the 3 Swords. This is in itself a deeply negative card with grief and mourning attached. Our family of nations is unhappy, angry and uneasy. But here, it is also a 3 way plan and again, it signifies a parting of the ways enacted in law. I feel it represents Mr Johnson, Mrs Merkel and M Macron today, and that Mrs Merkel and M Macron will not be in accord re the best way to proceed. The news media suggests this is probably the case even as we speak.
The outcome card, the 5 Clubs…so what does that mean? Clubs is the suit of government and business. 5 is the number of change…and also conflict. This change is uncomfortable.
But as you see, red suit cards translate as yes in cartomancy, black suit cards translate as no, so my cards, rightly or wrongly, have produced that same card as I drew in May, suggesting some kind of trade deal with the EU either before we leave, or immediately upon exiting.
The central card is key, so I use it as my start point for drawing a new line of enquiry reading top to bottom now, asking, well, if it’s not a straight WTO Exit, what will it look like?
The 7 Swords is negotiation and intense effort. It is the card of the ‘workaholic.’
There seems to be a story line here of Mrs Merkel saying in so many words, we can’t risk the No Deal scenario, this would be crazy. (Joker Reversed) The risk has to be detected as real enough and actually, it is. It looks as though Mrs Merkel will say this if she decides Mr Johnson is not bluffing. And I don’t feel he is. But if he could offer a way out that would be more acceptable to the Remain MP’s, he may take a pragmatic view on that, or cynical as some might say. To get the thing over the line and try to heal divisions, which right now are more of a yawning abyss.
That 5 Clubs card is also a reminder that the UK is the 5th largest economy in the world. Mrs Merkel is naturally, acutely aware of this, and she does not let personal pride or vanity get in the way of her judgement.
This last comment is based on the cards. Mrs Merkel is being shown to me as the eminently pragmatic and shrewd Queen of Diamonds, and the 9 Diamonds says…money talks.
Incidentally, Diamonds is the suit of electricity, and may sometimes suggest a health problem of nervous origin. Nervous as in , signals misfiring in the body, such as with Parkinson’s.
OK, let’s try out a pendulum divination, ie; asking my central nervous system to use a movement to indicate its non-verbal response to a verbalised question.
On what basis does this hocus-pocus work?
Well, it ain’t hocus-pocus. It works on the basis that the mind does not reside entire within the brain, and we know things at a deeper level than language, so the challenge is to distract the conscious mind, notice body cues from the CNS, and turn those into language. This language is of necessity, restricted to yes, no or maybe, in varying degrees of emphasis or intensity, depending on the size of the swing, and the speed of rotation of the swing.
Will the UK leave the EU on No Deal/WTO terms?
The pendulum moves to YES, wobbles a while then moves towards NO and starts swinging rapidly back and forth.
Will the UK leave the EU based on some adjusted version of Mrs May’s Withdrawal Agreement?
Again, the pendulum moves to YES, wobbles there awhile, then moves towards NO and starts swinging rapidly back and forth.
OK. So that Ace of Clubs card. I also drew it in May. Classic meanings. A new business agreement. Trade Deal. A new Government. A General Election.
Will there be a General Election BEFORE the UK leaves?
It is swinging to NO. But I don’t know. I keep thinking of that Ace of Clubs card. I don’t see one occurring in September or October and that timing would be exceedingly tight. But, swinging the pendulum again, there’s something here, suggesting however unlikely, there may be one either concluded or announced before Christmas.
When will Brexit be declared as having occurred?
The pendulum is swinging between Scorpio-early Sagittarius
Corresponding dates 22 October-21 December
But the arc stops well short of the later end of this date range. But I can’t shake off the feeling there is a twist to come, or a surprise. The Joker hints at surprises. Something may happen earlier than expected. And that Ace of Clubs can mean a General Election hoving into view, and if that’s correct, it suggests that Boris Johnson has already made a decision in respect of the next GE.
Update: I believe this coming twist was at least in part, the announcement made on 28 August, 8 days following the reading, declaring the proroguing of Parliament in which case that 5 of Clubs card, in addition to its more general meaning, specifically denotes the time frame; 5 weeks. That is, four weeks of the annual conference season plus another week.
In summary, What can I deduce from this cartomancy portrait?
There is a gap here, begging some question not directly articulated. It is very often the case in Divination, that one has to read between the lines and look for what is NOT present in the cards. As a reader for a client, I draw my cards, share my impressions and then I ask the client for their question. Context is crucial for interpretation, and I am but an instrument.
Public discussions have centred on whether Parliament will permit Brexit to proceed, or cancel it, defying the referendum result, which in many cases, would mean MP’s defying the majorities in their own constituencies. And assuming it proceeds, discussions have centred on whether this will be a Deal/No Deal Brexit.
But in terms of cartomancy, what is being sensed here I think, is that there is a third possibility. Another route out.
Excerpt from a much longer article in The Spectator by QC Marcus Howe, Chairman of Lawyers for Britain:
“…to achieve meaningful changes to the WA would require the EU to be willing to accept a massive loss of face. This seems unlikely to say the least. So the only viable route to leaving the EU with a deal is to leave May’s WA unratified in its box and bypass Article 50 altogether. This can be achieved via a free trade agreement (FTA) similar to Canada’s but with enhanced mutual recognition of services, as well as security and criminal justice cooperation.
Since it would take time to negotiate and conclude such a deal, we would need short-term bridging arrangements to keep trade flowing freely in both directions while the details of the long-term FTA were being hammered out. The UK and the EU would continue to recognise goods and services as conforming with their standards, unless and until relevant laws are changed. Most of these bridging arrangements could be implemented (at least in the short term) through the UK and the EU using unilateral powers under the umbrella of a political agreement, as opposed to needing a formal legal agreement.” – 25 July 2019
Lawyers for Britain
Things are mighty peculiar. They are at the same time intransigent, and yet moving on apace.
Back soon with more cartomancy 🙂
Until next time!
Original Post, May 2019
Brexit, hey? Where next? Your guess is as good as mine but let’s take another look at it through the lens of my playing cards, drawn three nights ago, May 4.
Will there be a second referendum, as called for by Labour, The Lib Dems, and a number of high profile campaign groups?
Or will we leave without a second referendum and if so, what does it look like from here?
#Cartomancy reads the rows of cards left to right & also sometimes top to bottom, noting the ratio of red: black cards before looking at the individual meanings of the cards containing extra comments.
ROW 1 Will there be a 2nd referendum?
Probably not. There is a ‘new’ king about to come into play. This is not Mr Corbyn. This is a king of Diamonds, an electric communicator with acute money sense and I always draw Mr Corbyn as a King of Hearts. So, is this is a candidate to replace Mrs May as PM, or it is Mr Farage and any effect of the new Brexit Party, or is both these things, and the same card is standing for two significant (new) figures coming into play (again).
I suspect so. A second referendum would kill Brexit, which would be the aim, and this would be achieved by the ballot design, which would be designed to split the Leave vote as per an idea currently under discussion, but that 8 Spades is a pretty conclusive ‘no’ card.
ROW 2 Will we leave following a successful fourth attempt by TM to push through the deal already rejected on three previous occasions? After all, time and energy are not inexhaustible. Note the Queen of Spades which is clearly here representing Theresa May; a woman consulting the ‘legalese’.
Well, based on these cards, and however crazy it might seem, a deal is still looking possible, and is looking more likely at this point in time than NO Deal; and perhaps this is hardly surprising, since the No Deal negotiating option removed from Mrs May’s tool box.
But WHAT deal? The four of Spades is a tomb, a rout, a retreat. This prospective fourth deal or new deal is not Mrs May’s.
Those Nines surrounding the Queen of Spades represent both the failure of completion on 29 March, and Mrs May’s intense desire to get this deal passed. The 9 Hearts is the ‘heartfelt wishes’ card.
The cards indicate that Mrs May sincerely wants to find a way to (or to be seen to at least) to bring the UK out of the EU (not Europe) but the terms of course, are the issue, as we all know, except for those for whom it is not a question of the terms, but more the determination to see Article 50 Revoked altogether, and the whole thing put back in its box, and the lid slammed shut never to be re-opened. The threat of this seems very real right now, or the hope of this, depending on how you feel about it. But it doesn’t look to me as though it will happen.
ROW 3: A second Referendum?
This threat or hope notwithstanding, the cards indicated there will not be a second referendum, although this may not be necessary for the revoking of Article 50. And I don’t see that, so it look as though we will leave, but when? Is there an underlying sense of what it will look like?
If Theresa May should present the exact same deal to Parliament (shown as the 10 Diamonds) a fourth time, this will jam up the works, suggests the appearance of the 4 Spades. It won’t pass, plus, she may then quit as PM, and a new PM will come in (King Diamonds?) This could happen this summer, suggests the second column as I read it top to bottom like so:
6 Clubs ( within 6 weeks from the date of this reading, or, this is a summer card.
What is absent from this spread is the single clean strike of the Ace of Spades, that would say a less equivocal OUT on WTO terms.
Other readers and astrologers are confident in expressing their forecasts of a clean WTO Brexit, even now.
I am probably struggling more than they to see past the noise, but I draw another cards and get the Ace of Clubs. This is BRAND NEW BUSINESS with a broad geographical horizon, but lacks that more black and white binary quality of the Ace of Swords
The Ace of Clubs has another quality to it, transcending matters of business….it’s equivalent to the Tarot’s Ace of Wands. Ignition. Birth, Almost like a rebirth.
So what does this mean in plain English? Well, this cloud is still morphing, but it’s looking like a WTO exit BUT with a ‘special European add-on.’
Or it is a whole New Deal.
For the sake of transparency, I should say that while I would perfectly calmly have accepted a remain vote in 2016, I feel the original mandate should be honoured as a point of principle, according to the self same terms in which it was clearly presented by the government in the run up to the referendum.
Execution of detail follows direction which follows principle.
However, as always, the risk in consulting with any kind of oracle is that the reader will not see what they personally may hope to see, and they may equally see precisely what they do not want to see.
I want to see that I will get outta this wheelchair and walk again one day. So, do I see that in my cards?
I could be wrong, and I never say never, but meanwhile I am living with the fact that I do not see in my cards what I wish to see for myself.
You take my point. The reader asks a question. S/he may have personal ‘skin in the game ‘or not, but either way s/he shuffles and picks the cards blindly, and s/he may misinterpret, and be especially at risk of doing so if reading from a position of bias or prejudice, but s/he cannot fudge the reds and blacks except by doing so deliberately, and what the heck would be the point of that, when time will tell us all what’s what in due course?
Il Matrimonio, bless his ecologically right-on size 11 breathable bamboo socks, says he no longer cares one way or another. He just wants it all to stop, and he doesn’t mind how. And he’d quite like me to shut up with even trying to forecast about it.
What will happen will happen, he says.
I have to give this forecasting thing a go, though, because divination is my line of work, and whether I get it right, or I get it wrong, so that I have to go back and figure out how and why I got it wrong with the benefit of hindsight – still, I will learn something, even if I have to fall flat on my face. So what? Life is short and…
I have done a number of readings around Brexit. I’m not being shown a clear No Deal exit, and yet, I see no sign of Remaining either. It is not going to be business as before, however this works out. The UK will not revert to the previous status quo.
We will all find out, *ahem* soon enough, won’t we?
And let us trust, it will be before each and every one of us is rendered utterly and completely….
Image: Public Domain Review: William Cheselden, 1733, courtesy of the National Library of Medicine.
I may be asked about anything in a reading and cannot prepare in advance. I can only prepare to respond.
What? Don’t I know in advance what I am going to be asked? How crappy is that?
No I don’t. If I draw cards ahead of a reading and ask, what am I going to be talking about with this person later on today, I will generally have some idea that for example, this will be about a job, a house, a relationship. This feels like a worry about children, or a pet, or money. This is about a bereavement etc etc, maybe even a ghost or some kind of strange occurrence, but I can’t know that I have got it right. How could I? I don’t claim to know anything until it is verified by the other party.
Someone wanted to know which re-investment option would work out best.
Option A, 1 year at 1.4 %?
Option B, 3 years at 1.8 %?
I shuffled and drew two columns of three cards each, asking to be shown money cards. I always state a question to myself during shuffling. I may do it silently, but this is my way of consciously directing what is ostensibly an entirely random and unconscious process, pulling cards from the deck.
The cards you do NOT draw can be as instructive and illuminating as the ones you do draw.
Option A initially drew The Nine of Swords Reversed, The Sun and The Page of Swords.
The Nine of Swords speaks of past losses, or worry. The Sun is success, also travel and sometimes children. The Page of Swords represents a good decision, and also in concrete terms, a young person below the age of 25 who will often be an air sign subject: Aquarius, Gemini or Libra. This was the enquirer’s daughter, an Aquarius subject, being funded through a course of post-graduate study…teacher training. The Page of Swords is all about learning.
There were no ‘risk signs’ attached to Option A, but there was no explicit money card either, so I drew an extra card and …aha! drew the very solid card of local business, family and community, the Six of Pentacles or Coins.
Option B drew the Star card, new ideas, a new vision, and oddly enough, this card is THE card of Aquarius again…the daughter, embarking on teacher training. Then we had the Eight of Cups —a card of moving on and finally, a happy, nostalgic card of old haunts, children and childhood, the Six of Cups.
So Option A drew a Six…Coins, and Option B also drew a Six…Cups.
Six is the number of family and community. Six is the number of schools, colleges, schools, hospitals, charities and public parks and other spaces.
This signal of security meant he was not going to go wrong either way, despite the fact he was slightly concerned about the possible financial effect of Brexit. Would the UK leave? (The Eight of Cups) This card indicates yes, after a long hesitation or delay.
How would uncertainty impact on the three year plan if he chose Option B?
I saw no loss associated with the choice of Option B either, but just as with Option A, there was no explicit money card, and again I drew an extra card and drew the Five of Wands Reversed. This card is about volatile markets and did not suggest a loss, but nor did it offer an advantage over the Six of Coins drawn against Option A.
Therefore I suggested he go with Option A.
He was intrigued. It emerged that he had already made his decision, but wanted to see if I would concur and based on what reasoning. My comments supported his own assessment and what he gained from this, he said, was external corroboration, and with that came a sense of greater certainty and clarity.
What if I had seen it very differently?
That might have happened, and then he would have had to weigh his instincts against mine, wouldn’t he, in deciding how best to proceed.
In this situation, should it arise, I would always suggest going with your own assessment, rather than taking the reader’s feedback on advice. But being forewarned you may find a way to ring fence the risk.
It is better to stay true to your natural way of doing things.
It is time to say farewell to the season of the Zodiac Crab for another year, ushering in the season of the Lion.
But what does Cancer look like in the night sky, and what is its seasonal significance?
Ruling celestial body: Moon (and I pray it is never industrialized, to be despoiled, for in doing so we will despoil something in ourselves that could never be quantified until it was lost forever, repository of mankind’s dreams.)
Key phrase: I feel
Body: The chest, breast, heart
Birth Stone: Stones and metals fall under the rule of planets, not signs, but through its association with the Moon, Cancer has affinity with pearls, silver and crystals.
Colour: White, silver
Tree: all trees rich in sap
Tarot card: The Chariot (see how it is like a shell?) Control, progress, teamwork, and the harmonizing of different elements.
Public Domain: The Chariot, Rider-Waite
Wikipedia: Cancer and its stars, via Free Clipart
Decapoda is the head and it’s actually a double-star. Acubens means ‘claw’ in Arabic, and the star Al Tarf is the foot of the Crab.
And if you think it looks more like a lobster, you’re not far wrong. It was also seen as a crayfish by the Greeks, and in ancient Egypt, a dung beetle.
Cancer, Latin for crab, is in a dark region of the sky, and is the faintest constellation in the Zodiac, with only two stars above the fourth magnitude: Acubens (The Claw) and Al Tarf (The foot). Cancer is visible in the Northern Hemisphere in the early spring, during March at 9 PM and can be seen in the Southern Hemisphere during autumn.
It’s almost impossible to see Cancer with the naked eye or even binoculars, looking between Leo, the lion, and Gemini, the twins. And it doesn’t look much like a crab at all. It looks more like a faint, upside-down Y and it’s often remarked that it’s more like the shape of a crayfish or lobster. It was also called the Crayfish in classical astrology, and in Egyptian astrology, The Scarab. But it’s always been seen a creature with an exoskeleton; an arthropod, and Cancer appears to rise crab-wise; not sideways, but backwards in the zodiac. The Sun’s entry into Cancer occurs at the summer solstice,
‘Solstice,’ Latin sol -stice means the Sun seems to be ‘standing still’ as it approaches this point.
Cancer’s faint but it’s got a lovely star cluster glowing at its centre. Praesepe, or ‘The Manger’ is one of two Messier objects in Cancer, identified in 1771 by French astronomer Charles Messier. Its newest name is The Beehive Cluster because seen through the telescope it looks like a swarm of bees, but to the naked eye it looks like a small, fuzzy patch of light -or a tiny cloud floating through the stars.
Public Domain: The Beehive Cluster
The Beehive Cluster (also known as Praesepe (Latin for “manger”), M44, NGC 2632, or Cr 189), is an opencluster in the constellation Cancer. It is one of the nearest open clusters to Earth, containing a larger population of stars than other nearby bright openclusters.
As the sign of the Sun’s greatest elevation, Cancer was considered nearest to the highest point of heaven – and was called ‘the Gate of Men’ through which, it was thought, souls descended to Earth to be born. The opposite constellation, Capricornm was the ‘Gate of the Gods’, where souls of the departed rose back to heaven.
The stars of the Beehive were all formed at the same time, from the same cloud of gas and dust around 600 million to 700 million years ago, making them four billion years younger than the Sun. Pliny used this group of stars as an indicator of wet weather, and said that when Praesepe was not visible in a clear sky, snow or heavy rain or even violent storms were on the way. The outer edges of an approaching weather disturbance consist of very thin/high cirriform clouds, which might otherwise not be noticed under a dark, moonless night sky. These are just opaque enough to block out the light of the Beehive.
Cancer’s other Messier object: M67 is much older, about the same as the age of the Sun. Most clusters don’t survive more than a few trips around the centre of the galaxy because the gravity of other stars and giant clouds of gas and dust pull them apart. But M67 has survived for four or five billion years because it’s in the outer part of the galaxy with fewer stars and gas clouds to disturb it.
Cancer also contains a planetary system; 55 Cancri, containing five known planets, with possibly more awaiting discovery. 55 Cancri is about 40 light-years away, and is just about visible to the unaided eye, although you need help to find it. The innermost of its planets is a “super Earth,” a few times heavier than Earth – but none of these planets has the right surface conditions for liquid water, and life there isn’t considered likely.
Cancer is associated with the Twelve Labours of Hercules after he went mad, mistook his wife and children for monsters and tragically killed them. His twelve great labours were performed in token of penance. The second of his great challenges was to kill the Hydra, a terrible water serpent but his enemy, Hera, who had always hated him as an illegitimate son (yet another one) of her husband Zeus, sent a crab to harass him while he fought the serpent. The crab faithfully did its best, nipping Hercules again and again, but he stepped on it and crushed it, or in other versions of the story killed it with his club.
Public Domain: Hercules fights the hideous Hydra, and is dutifully harassed by The Crab
Hera rewarded its loyalty and tenacity by placing it in the heavens, but she placed it in a dark portion of the heavens, and gave it only faint stars. Crabs like dark, quiet places to feel safe and at home. However, its placement is as spiritually significant as it is shy and retiring, both as the highest point in the zodiac, nearest to heaven, and the messenger of the summer solstice.
Public Domain: Enoch’s Constellation
Cancer is the fourth sign of the Zodiac and represents those born between June 20 and July 22. It is considered a water sign, and is one of the four cardinal signs, which are the signs indicating a change of season when the sun makes its annual passage into them.
Cancer is all about the shoreline, and tides, monthly and annual, the moon and the sun. The sign of Cancer, ruled by The Moon, is a cardinal sign, herald of the seasons, announcing the arrival of summer in the northern hemisphere and winter in the southern hemisphere.
The Cancer Personality
Of course there is no such thing in reality as THE Cancer personality. This is simply an archetype. Your sun sign is the keynote but it’s not ‘The Story.’
The archetype of the Cancer personality is complex, elusive and riddled with contradictions.
Cancer stands for both mother and father. It is the zodiac sign of the nurturing parent. Tough outside. Off spring must be defended, dangers must be driven back. Ruled by the Moon, moody and ‘crabby’ they may seem more easy going than they actually are, but there is a softness inside. Cancer typically relates well to babies and small animals, all wild things. The empty nest is rarely easy for any parent but can be total anathema to the Cancer parent.
Public Domain: Grandfather and granddaughter in garden; Rose Maynard Barton
Cancer is the sign of hearth and home, and expanding this; tribal identity and ancestral legacy, historical, cultural and genetic. It is the sign of memory, nostalgia, sometimes regrets, and a longing to return to happy childhood haunts- maybe even a rock-pool.
Cancer is highly intuitive, sensitive, receptive, and keeps its cards close to its chest, not so much deliberately, and as a matter of strategy, but because reserve, reticence and secrecy is what comes naturally to the Cancer subject, just as it does to the living creature. Still waters run deep. Cancer sees and hears, but does not speak. Verbal communication is not Cancer’s number one operating mode.
Decisions may be based on reasoning that is neither obvious nor apparent to other people, but is driven by a gift for lateral thinking, originating solutions to problems from angles that others have not considered.
Cancer is an enigma. But what would be a shoreline or a rock-pool without a crab?
Prescience is not omniscience. Tarot cards are used to facilitate divination via a language embedded in their imagery. Generally this means that they allow a reading of the present situation with hints about the past or present in respect of the continuum.
The puzzle of this, and not infrequently the wonder, is when the reader is reading for complete strangers, knowing nothing or little of them, or their present circumstances.
Public Domain: The Fortune Teller, Albert Anker, 1880
Sometimes the cards enable forecasting or sudden leaps of insight, not easy to account for through the language of the cards themselves. It is a conundrum that sometimes the future exists and sometimes it does not. As the saying goes, nothing is certain but death and taxes.
But we all watch forecasts and we all make them, all the time. That is what planning is based on, and what forecasting activities are based on…projection of some pattern or algorithm, whereas ‘psychic’ predictions are generally disbelieved, even by the person making them, because unlike numerically based forecasts, they indicate a lack or break in some more widely perceived pattern.
Experience tells me prediction is perfectly possible, beyond common sense forecasting, as facilitated through the cards. I am not saying it is easily available on tap, and others are prone to pointing out that tarot is actually a counselling tool.
I don’t disagree, and I am not in the business of telling other people what to think, or that they are wrong, but it has happened far too many times in my work, and too many times in family life for me to feel it is as simple as that.
Too many times, peering through the dark glass of my cards, looking into the unknowns of this or that; the future recovery of a sick pussy cat, yes or no; the return of another missing cat, yes or no; a long silence from an old friend, why the silence, and when might there be word from this friend? The future purchase of a particular car requiring to be be built abroad and to spec. Would this go ahead? Would it prove satisfactory? And so on.
The answers proved correct but I didn’t know the answers. I had to sit and play with my cards, have a look, and have a think.
But when I am looking at politicians through the cards, who or what am I trying to read? There is no direct personal connection. How am I coming at it? What am I trying to read, actually? Future headlines? The thoughts of people who do not know I exist, who are not asking me any question, who have not entered into a ‘telepathic’ dialogue with a reader like me?
I do not know, and I don’t ‘know’ anything more than anyone else, but of course I must give it a go, for the experience, and to learn, and test myself in new ways.
So, these were the cards I drew 18 June, in respect of the candidates for PM, forty five minutes ahead of the announcement that Dominic Raab was now out of the contest for Prime Minister.
I drew further cards after these cards discussed below, but unfortunately the photo didn’t make it to my lap-top. IT glitch but the bottom line of the lost cards was that the UK will eventually leave the EU as per the referendum mandate 2016, and may yet achieve a trade only special deal with the EU. I drew the Ten of Cups twice, correlating with Scorpio timing, late Sept-late Oct, indicating that the UK government may deliver on its new promise to leave by or before 31 October. If not, it could slip until at least May/June 2020 (Knight of Swords =Gemini, and we are still in Gemini now, with 2 days still to go of Gemini in 2019) To what extent does this depend on the choice of the next PM?
UPDATE: So now that we know for a fact that Boris Johnson is the new MP, will we leave the EU by or before 31 October 2019?
The first card, the 8 Spades, denotes a stalemate, imprisonment or benighted state of affairs and this is the start point of the answer. 1 Black suit card, the Joker signifying a need for a fresh start, and then 3 red suit cards out of a total of 5 indicates that it can be done in fact, and very likely will be.
Will it be a rehash of the Withdrawal Agreement? I don’t think so, I may need to frame that as a direct question and look again, especially in view of suspicions expressed by the Brexit Party. The 9 Diamonds promises a tough time, with obstacles and delays, but an extra comment card is an Ace, (new start) while of the four Aces, the Ace of Clubs in particular refers to a new Government or a new Act of Government. The central card, the 9 of Hearts represents the crux of the answer, yes or no, and here it is saying yes, because
A) it is a red suit card and
B) the 9 Hearts is the ‘wishes’ card, indicating that The new PM will realise, or see realised, the stated wish of his leadership contest manifesto.
Previously….19 June 2019
Who Will be the New PM?
NB I am not asking who should be PM. I will leave that to others. I am not enquiring into the ‘worthiness’ of the candidates, only asking for signs as to whom it will be, and what might prevent them from succeeding, or what might help them, as suggested by the cards and only the cards, but connecting these to the known evidence where possible. This is about divination, not a political opinion piece.
The Magician, The 9 Swords, The Knight Swords, FUTURE? THE WHEEL OF FORTUNE
Image Ciro Marchetti: The Legacy of The Divine Tarot
Reflecting the current state of voting, these are the strongest cards, and this is the longest write-up for the same reason, but there is a but.
Mr Johnson is a Gemini subject, which interestingly for a reader, correlates astrologically with The Magician card. The Magician combines intellect and intuition. The Magician can get things done. The Magician is sometimes also a figure of mistrust, the Trickster. Sometimes this is justified but also, there is a mercurial quality, and the thinking happens so fast, one suspects a sleight of hand where actually, there was none. Gemini is ruled by Mercury, planet of Trade. Another name for The Magician is The Jester. Mr Johnson is genuinely up for fun, can laugh at himself, or present himself as a figure of fun to many, but his mind remains separate and cool.
The 9 Swords is a horrid card of stress and sometimes sadness. There is a fair degree of stress suggested here, maybe headaches, literally. Insomnia. This situation weighs heavy on Boris Johnson, irrespective of appearances and how would it not? There is also a worry about something personal, close to his own home. Women and children feature in that picture.
Update: headlines followed a few days after this blog was posted re Mr Johnson’s domestic argument with Carrie Symonds. It would seem that the 9 Swords was foreshadowing this event, and possibly something more besides, but it really is private, and it doesn’t feel appropriate for me to speculate in public.
The Knight of Swords attacks head on, but with a cool head. It’s not personal but get in his/her way, he/she strikes you down and carries on going. The objective is everything.
The Wheel of Fortune is a big card; a destiny card. THE destiny card, bespeaking forces greater than any individual’s ability to control. This is not up to him. He has been here before and it did not go his way. But the Wheel has been drawn the right way up. When the Wheel is drawn reversed, change is coming, but you’re riding the downward wheel. The Wheel is not only a major arcana card, it is a Number 10 card.
Mr Johnson has drawn two major arcana cards out of four cards drawn. That strikes me as significant. These cards are not straightforward, however.
The votes suggest this is almost in the bag, but that isn’t how it feels. This situation is, I feel, weighing heavy on Mr Johnson. Not shown here but looking on previous occasions I have twice drawn the 3 of Cups as the outcome in respect of his candidacy. A celebration. Still, there is that 9 of Swords…and a sense of perhaps entirely natural guarded reserve.
The 3 Coins, The Sun Rx , The Ace Coins RX, FUTURE? THE ACE SWORDS (?)
Image: Ciro Marchetti: Legacy of The Divine Tarot
The 3 Coins denotes conscientiousness, skill and attention to detail. I’d be inclined to rule out Mr Hunt’s chances of the top job based on these cards. The 3 Coins is a positive card, but here it is combined with The Sun RX (success denied or delayed) and the Ace of Coins RX (no new job, no new house) Except I can’t yet decide he won’t be in the final two, notwithstanding these cards, because of the presence of the Ace of Swords; ‘the seeds of a victory as yet unseen’ – a coup…though it could be foreshadowing a metaphorical coup de grace, the sword of Damocles, looming over the next round. Update:As we know know, Mr Hunt made it to the final two.
Cards drawn the evening of 22 July.
Top Line: Boris Johnson: 1 character card followed by 4 yes cards
Bottom Line: Jeremy Hunt: 1 character card followed by 4 no cards
BJ’s Joker is picking up on his reputation of course, but in cartomancy it means ‘all change’. It can mean a risk taker. It can mean tricky dealings, or recklessness, but what it never means is stupid.
JH’s Three of Diamonds is a good communicator and team worker. But for significance it lacks the weightiness of The Joker. In cartomancy, BTW, it does not usually matter if a card comes out right way or not.
But again, The Joker seems to be making some additional comment attached to Mr Johnson’s personal life and relationship matters. Here is someone with an irregular domestic situation going on, but this is not someone who is a ‘womaniser’ on anything like the scale of a John F Kennedy, or a David Lloyd George, and by their final public record have they been judged by posterity, and in view of the gravity of their times, I’d say rightly so, and perhaps the jury of public opinion could stay out for now at least, on the merits of Boris Johnson the Prime Minister. But of course it won’t and he will just have to deal with it.
The Other Candidates
Strength, The 8 Wands, The Empress, FUTURE? The 10 CUPS
Image: Ciro Marchetti The Gilded Tarot
Mr Gove’s cards start strong. The Strength card does what it says on the tin. Plus it hints at a health kick. Could this card be showing us Una, taming the Lion of Britannia? As an individual contender, it is not that Mr Gove trumps Boris Johnson in terms of ability, but he does seem to have an edge in terms of a gift for teamwork. Strength is a Number 8 card, auspicious in both western and Chinese astrology; a good card of money and trade. This card trumps the dedicated craftsmanship and attention to detail of the Three of Coins of Mr Hunt. Then we have The Empress – harvest home, and the 10 of Cups.
Mr Johnson has the 10 of the Wheel of Fortune. Mr Gove has the 10 of happiness. Could it be the hearth at 10 Downing Street? Theoretically, perhaps, but it’s a smaller echo , the 1o Cups is more domestic in character, when weighed against the ‘destiny’ card, and that weightier 10 of The Wheel of Fortune.
Update: As we know now, Mr Gove made it to the final 3, amid rumours that tactical voting had ensured Mr Hunt made it through to the final two, and if so, perhaps this was done a) to remove what was seen as a chief threat to Mr Johnson’s chances and b) to offer party voters the advantage of a clear choice between two very different candidates with different approaches to delivering Brexit.
The Hermit, The 7 Cups RX , The 8 Cups FUTURE? The 9 COINS.
Image: Kat Black: The Golden Tarot
The Hermit suggests commendable qualities suggested in these cards; personal kindliness, a marked degree of self- sufficiency and also keen analytical abilities, and Mr Javid’s future with the conservative party seems set to continue with some senior role as indicated by the future 9 Coins. But the 7 of Cups is reversed, castles in the air. The 8 of Cups is about moving on, and 9 Coins is about managing a sector, running a ‘hotel’ or a financial department, tending a ‘garden’. But it’s not an Ace (beginnings) and it’s not a 10 (arrival at a destination, end of a cycle, crossing the line, completion)
Update: That senior role suggested by 9 Coins and 8 Cups, running a ‘financial department’ as we have now seen, turned out to be Mr Javid’s appointment as Chancellor of The Exchequer.
Rory Stewart (typing this section at 18.05, having just heard the results of today’s round while typing up Mr Raab’s cards.)
The Ace Cups Rx. The 2 Wands Rx, The Page Cups, FUTURE? 4 COINS Rx
Image Public Domain The Ace Cups Reversed: Rider-Waite
This was the weakest row of cards yesterday, weaker than Mr Raab’s, and on this basis, I expected that Mr Stewart would go out of the contest before Mr Raab for all the sudden media push of positive publicity on Mr Stewart. And that expectation was wrong. WRONGGGG. I award myself a bad gold star. I thought Mr Stewart would go out before Mr Raab. And as it turned out, there was only one day between them, but there it is. Mr Raab went out first despite the fact of his stronger cards, and there may be in that, another suggestion of tactical voting at work. No matter. Bad gold star for me.
So what was weak about Mr Stewart’s cards? Out of four cards, three were drawn reversed. We had the reversed Ace of Cups, meaning, ‘a cup is emptied on the ground’, while the 2 Wands RX is nicknamed the ‘sorrow of Alexander’. Disappointment in expansion and conquest. The most positive card in this spread, the page of cups- denotes a ‘new kid in town,’ and a surge in goodwill and popularity, which is certainly being borne out in the media. But in terms of the Tarot, Mr Stewart has done very well to get so far as he has in the face of this card portrait. The 4 Coins Reversed were saying, literally, as literally as the Tarot can speak ‘NOT round 4.’
The Chariot, 4 SWORDS Rx, High Priestess (Out)
Image Public Domain: The Chariot, Rider-Waite
It was the 4 Swords that was warning of Mr Raab leaving the contest yesterday, 18.06.2019. One may think I should have been expecting that? Saw that coming yesterday? Nah. Not with my everyday hat on, I was surprised to see Brexiteer Mr Raab go out so soon.
The Chariot card suggests Mr Raab could have made progress on driving Brexit forward, but those voting decided he was a horse (or the griffin) pulling The Chariot, rather than the charioteer himself, while the 4 Swords Reversed is a ‘sick’ bed, or a ‘tomb’. Perhaps pro-Brexit voters in the conservative party were not sufficiently convinced of his having the wherewithal to guide The Chariot? The 4 Swords suggests that this was based on the circumstances of his earlier resignation as Brexit Secretary.
Update: The Chariot, a weighty, Major Arcana card, turns out to denote diplomacy and travel. Mr Raab has been appointed First Secretary of State and Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs. That High Priestess leaves him as a new Number 2. A much consulted figure.
The Four of Swords came up more than once before in previous readings, asking about the Withdrawal Agreement, and whether that would get through Parliament.
‘No’, suggested the Four of Swords back then, and we saw how that turned out.
The solitary figure of Mr Raab’s High Priestess is Number 2 in the Major Arcana whereas Boris Johnson has drawn that equally solitary figure, The Magician, is Number 1 in the Major Arcana.
One might have thought pro- Brexit conservatives would want to hedge their bets, ensuring that an unequivocally pro-Brexit ‘Number 2’ stayed in the race as back-up, but no. We are all seeing, politics at the moment just isn’t working according to what might seem to be obvious dynamics.
These are strange times and the cards are strange. I have been looking out for an appearance of The Emperor, Judgement, Justice, The Sun or The World against the name of one of these candidates.
There remains a sense that the UK will eventually leave the EU as per the referendum 2016, and may agree a trade only special deal with the EU. But the battle is not over.
I drew the Ten of Cups twice, correlating with Scorpio timing, late Sept-late Oct, indicating that the UK government may deliver on its new promise to leave by or before 31 October.
If not, it could slip until at least May/June 2020 (Knight of Swords =Gemini, and we are still in Gemini now, with 2 days still to go of Gemini in 2019) But the Knight of Swords is a card sudden, speedy development and conclusive actions. Whose style is that? Mr Hunt has said that if he wins, he will have Mr Johnson on his team. And maybe Mr Hunt will yet do it, but that’s not sufficiently clear for me to feel he’s closed the gap enough yet.
Most of us know our zodiac or sun sign, but what does it look like in the night sky, and what’s the story behind it? This month it’s Gemini’s star turn.
Symbol: The Roman numeral for 2 joined top and bottom in representation of unity
Ruling planet: Mercury
Affirmation: ‘I think, I inquire.’
Birth Stone: If born in May, Emerald. If born in June, Pearl (although it is not a stone, it is thought to be ruled by Mercury) Lucky stone Tiger’s Eye
Tree: all kinds of nut trees
Flower: Lily of the Valley, Lavender
Tarot cards: The Lovers (love, choices, decision-making) and The Magician/Jester/Trickster
Image From the Gilded Tarot, Ciro Marchetti
The Astronomy of Gemini
Gemini is a constellation in the northern sky, one of the constellations in the zodiac, the name for the area of the sky we see from Earth, including the apparent paths of the sun, moon and planets.
The Gemini constellation has been described by cultures since ancient times, with many different names and stories. It was listed as one of the 48 ancient constellations by Greek astronomer Ptolemy in the second century, though Ptolemy called it The Star of Apollo (Castor) and The Star of Heracles (Pollux).
Gemini is the northernmost constellation in the zodiac, high in the winter sky in the northern hemisphere, and is the thirtieth largest in size. Gemini can be seen by the naked eye, looking north east of the constellation Orion between the Taurus and Cancer constellations.
Best viewing is during February. By April and May, the constellation can be seen soon after sunset in the west. The two brightest stars in the constellation are Castor and Pollux, representing the heads of the twins from Greek mythology, while fainter stars outline their bodies. Pollux, the westerly twin, is a red giant star, 33 light-years from Earth while Castor is about 51 light-years away. A light-year is the distance that light travels in a year – about 6 trillion miles/9.6 trillion kilometres.
Pollux is the brighter of the two stars, and has a massive planet orbiting it; Genorium Beta, 1.6 times bigger than Jupiter. Castor is actually not a single star, but a star system made of up six stars not visible to the naked eye.
Public Domain: Gemini- Helvelius
The Ancient History
The concept of twins in mythology goes back at least as far as the so-called Age of Gemini, during the Palaeolithic, 6, 500 BCE, arising from our understanding of the duality fundamental to the nature of reality. There are male and female twins but many twin brothers in particular in world myth, standing for night and day, light and dark, heat and cold, male and female, war and peace, good and bad, life and death, and the creation myths of ancient cultures reflect this eternal battle of seeming opposites. Many surviving objects feature twin gods and goddesses; a major theme across all cultures.
The Astrology of Gemini
The ‘twin stars’ have been recognised as representing twins across all cultures, each with their own names and stories. In Arabic astronomy the twins were seen as peacocks, In Egyptian astrology they were twin goats, or else the two gods, Horus the Elder and Horus the Younger, while classical Greek mythology identified them as the twin brothers, Castor and Pollux, The Gemini; the name by which the constellation is still known throughout the western world.
Castor comes from the Greek Καστωρ (Kastor) and means “to excel, to shine.” In Greek myth Castor was a son of Zeus and the twin brother of Pollux.
Pollux comes from the Roman form of Greek Πολυδευκης (Polydeukes) and means “very sweet.”
The circumstances of their birth were unusual to say the least. Queen Leda of Sparta was seduced by Zeus who had disguised himself as a swan though perhaps that was putting it too politely. He glided up preening, and pounced on her while she was bathing. Later that evening, notwithstanding this undoubted shock, she also slept with her husband King Tyndareus and went on to produce four children; Castor, Pollux and their sisters Helen (later Helen of Troy) and Clytemnestra (later married to Agamemnon as queen of Mycenae) Pollux and Helen were immortal, fathered by Zeus, while Castor and Clytemnestra were mortal, fathered by Tyndareus.
Image Below: Public Domain, the young Castor and Pollux (Meissen)
The brothers were handsome, curious and shared many adventures. The mortal Castor was a renowned horseman and a master at fencing, while Pollux was known for his great strength and skill at boxing.
Castor was killed in a quarrel, possibly a disagreement over dividing the spoils after a cattle raid, and Pollux was distraught. He didn’t want immortality, not if it meant being without his twin brother. Pollux begged his father, Zeus, for help and Zeus scratched his head, wondering how to fix this, and then decided to place them both in the stars, to be together forever as the constellation Gemini.
The Greeks worshipped the twins as gods who helped shipwrecked sailors. Later the Romans developed a cult around Castor and Pollux dating back to 484 B.C. A temple to the twins was built in the Roman Forum in 414 BC in thanks for their help in defeating the Latins; an old enemy, in the battle of Regillus. The Romans considered Castor and Pollux the patron gods of horses, and of the Roman mounted knights; the equites and Castor and Pollux appear on many early Roman coins.
The Gemini subject in real life action
Gemini is ‘mercurial’, restless but independent minded- and like the Tarot’s Magician, does things his or her own way, whether or not this is necessarily a good idea.
Gemini often has a pleasing appearance; slender, well-proportioned and above average height, with neat features in an oval face. Classic Gemini subjects are lively, agile, sparkling, charming, chatty and inquisitive, but not necessarily easy to get close to.
Gemini tends to change jobs more often than subjects of the other signs of the zodiac, and is better at starting new projects than finishing them, but can do very well in teams where new ideas, agility and a talent for networking are needed. Gemini could be the perfect journalist, TV or radio presenter, columnist, salesperson, or literary or travel agent.
Gemini has charisma, but can occasionally come across as superficial, fickle, or careless, even ruthless, dropping people and projects once they lose interest, which Gemini can do quite suddenly. But once truly committed, they are intensely loyal to their friends and loved ones. Gemini is mostly fairly peaceable, but they don’t shy away from saying what they think, and if anyone tries to back them into a corner, quicksilver Gemini comes out fighting, and Gemini has plenty of physical courage, but also stealth.
Astrology and Tarot are separate artistic disciplines with distinct histories and traditions, but there are powerful connections between them, with many astrological archetypes embedded in the Tarot.
Image: Public Domain from The Book of Hours, Jean Pierre Verdet
The 78 cards of a classic Tarot deck include 22 Major Arcana cards (Greater Secrets) and 56 Minor Arcana Cards (Lesser Secrets.)
The Major Arcana cards shine a light on life-changing situations and events, or draw attention to some crucial aspect of your own personality or behaviour, demanding attention at the time of the reading.
Each sign of the Zodiac is linked with a Tarot card from The Major Arcana. Your sun sign and your Major Arcana card represent key archetypes. But what exactly is an archetype?
The word derives from Ancient Greek and means a very typical example of something, like a model from which other copies are made; a prototype.
Arkhetupon ‘something moulded first as a model’, from arkhe-‘primitive’ + tupos ‘a model’.
The Oxford English Dictionary offers these definitions
A very typical example of a certain person or thing.
Later, in Psychoanalysis (in Jungian theory) a primitive mental image inherited from the earliest human ancestors, and supposed to be present in the collective unconscious.
A recurrent symbol or motif in literature, art, or mythology.
Archetypes are complexes of experience that come upon us like fate, and their effects are felt in our most personal life.
The ‘anima’ no longer crosses our path as a goddess, but, it may be, as an intimately personal misadventure, or perhaps as our best venture.
When, for instance, a highly esteemed professor in his seventies abandons his family and runs off with a young red-headed actress, we know that the gods have claimed another victim.
From Jung: Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious, Image: John Strudwick 1849-1937
The archetype represented by your Major Arcana card does not define you, of course, any more than your Sun sign does. You and I are unique. Every living thing is unique and yet- it is also classifiable
The archetypes are classifications of behaviours and attributes, and in the Tarot, the Major Arcana chime with the signs of the zodiac.
There are two key archetypes in play in personal astrology; the archetype of your Sun sign, and then there is your ‘outward face’; a key aspect of the public persona, represented by your Rising Sign or Ascendant; the planet rising on the Eastern horizon at the time of your birth. It’s a good idea to read both when reading your horoscope.
If you know your time of birth, you can identify your rising sign via this link
Discover the Tarot’s Major Arcana card for your zodiac sign below.
Aries (Mar 21-Apr 19)
Astrological archetype: The Ram. The Warrior.
Major Arcana card The Emperor – (energy, organisation, leadership)
Spring bursts forth after winter and so does the ram with the year’s first lambs, and so does The Emperor in you and me. The Emperor decrees we can’t just creep through Life. We need to push sometimes, and push hard or we would never get anywhere. The Emperor is fiery, energetic, driven and determined, good at delegating but controlling – some might even say bossy; A battering ‘ram’. The Emperor may be accident- prone due to general speed and haste. Male or female ‘he’ needs to learn how to take it easy, and slow down, to be more careful and patient, to stay curious and listen to the ideas of others. He’s not the only Emperor round here.
Taurus (Apr 20-May 20)
Astrological archetype: The Bull. The Farmer.
Major Arcana card The Hierophant – (faith, study, tradition)
This card is about the power and wisdom of the written words and of tradition. Books, publishers, librarians, churches of all faiths, and universities are indicated by this same card. The High Priest (Hierophant) does things by the book, and has faith and trust in the old ways. He is all about standards. He is a protector, a gardener, a teacher, a mentor, a scholar, but the other message of this card is that change can be good, even necessary, wisdom is knowing when to bend with the wind, and that does not necessarily mean the same as throwing out any baby with the bathwater.
Gemini (May 21-June 20)
Astrological archetype: The Twins. The Jester.
Your Major Arcana card is The Lovers – (choices, love, duality)
This card has another name: ‘The Decision.’ Gemini is quick-witted, but sometimes decisions need more care and time than mercurial Gemini gives them. There is an innate restlessness, Gemini can be quick to walk away, even when sometimes they might do better to stick at things, even if they are bored, or the going gets rough. Gemini is the archetype of the Jester, the one who can take any turn of fate with a laugh and makes sure we remember to enjoy ourselves. This is the wisdom of Gemini. We need to be able to laugh at ourselves in order to keep a healthy sense of perspective. Laughter is powerful medicine. What we can’t joke about, we can’t deal with..
Cancer (Jun 21-Jul 22)
Astrological archetype: The Crab. The Mother.
Major Arcana card The Chariot – (progress, effort, co-operation).
The Crab is famously gentle, home-loving, intuitive, private; even secretive, but just look again at this guy/girl. This is Cancer’s Tarot face. The Chariot carries the victorious on parade. The Chariot takes us places. This is a card of triumph through discipline and sustained effort; the harnessing of resources, the charioteer and the horses working as one. Choose your teams well, put in a sustained effort, you and they can do great things together. The Crab may be the archetypal sign of motherhood where the Ram is fatherhood, but these are qualities, not identities, while a carer is not a servant, and the gentleness of Cancer does not make it a doormat. No way. Push too far they will withdraw.
Leo (Jul 23-Aug 22)
Dominant element: Fire.
Astrological archetype: The Lion. The King.
Major Arcana card Strength – (courage, willpower, fortitude)
Life demands courage to meet it head on. To learn new things you have to take chances and risk failure. But the fire of Leo also demands control. The lady patiently restrains the lion. It shall not devour her. She shall not try to harm it. The lion represents the spirit of the Leo subject. There is natural courage and charisma, but the Lady represents strength with gentleness and restraint – moral courage. The lion does not want to be ruled, but nor does she wish to be devoured, power must be used wisely and tyranny is always to be resisted.
Virgo (Aug 23-Sep 22)
Dominant element: Earth
Astrological archetype: The Virgin. The Craftsman.
Major Arcana card The Hermit – (Self-sufficiency, connection to nature, analysis)
The Hermit often likes to walk alone, and this is usually by choice. Time alone, especially in quiet, wild, green places, is especially good for the Hermit, male or female, married, or single. People turn to the Hermit for wise advice. The Hermit knows how to listen and sees far more than he or she says. The Hermit shines a quiet light along his path and others may safely follow in times of need. Animals can trust to the hermit’s compassion. The Hermit is often a talented artist or crafts-person, slow, methodical and a perfectionist, so much so, that she never feelsthe work is good enough to sell, even when it is. Virgo’s challenge is to expedite..
Libra (Sep 23-Oct 22)
Dominant element: Air.
Astrological archetype: The Scales. The Judge.
Major Arcana card Justice – (order, reason, restitution).
Libra combines analytical ability with intuition, and a natural grace and charm, with a talent for diplomacy. Justice is capable of severity, however, and can just now and again be overly keen to apply the letter of the law, forgetting the spirit. See the Sword in the hand of Justice. But the scales don’t stay still. They are rarely in perfect balance. They see-saw, like Libra’s moods and occasional indecision. Libra is changeable. It may be the only sign of the Zodiac represented by an inanimate object, and a Libra subject may be a born judge, but still, they are only human. But without Justice there would be chaos and misery, mature loose and running red in tooth and claw. There could be no society and no civilisation.
Scorpio (Oct 23-Nov 21)
Dominant element: Water.
Astrological archetype: The Scorpion. The Actor.
Major Arcana card Death – (endings, liberation, transformation)
There is no life without death. There can be nothing new without something else changing or ending. But just like the song, the seasons don’t fear the reaper. Death is not the enemy of Life. Scorpio understands this great mystery. Intuitive, subtle, often somewhat secretive, charismatic, intense, Scorpio is devoted to their loved ones, while with others they may be a true friend and powerful ally – or a vengeful enemy. Death has a long memory. He has seen it all before. Get in the way, and he may mow you down with that scythe. Sometimes it is better to walk away. Sometimes it is wiser to call it quits and call time on something that no longer serves you well.
Sagittarius (Nov 22-Dec 21)
Dominant element: Fire.
Astrological archetype: The Archer. The Explorer.
Your Tarot archetype is Temperance – (moderation; timing, healing).
Temperance was regarded as an angel- a force for virtue at the time the Tarot was first in use. Temperance is about moderation, and self- control, and the avoidance of extremes. But Temperance has other meanings…alchemy, the fusing together of two elements, materials or qualities to make a new thing stronger than either individual element; Intellect and feeling, ability and ambition, one person and another, one people and another. This is a force for diplomacy, reconciliation of differences and also for physical healing after illness.
Capricorn (Dec 22-Jan 19)
Dominant element: Earth.
Astrological archetype: The Goat. The Builder.
Major Arcana card The Devil – (also Pan. Wildness, entrapment, liberation)
Powerful opposites meet in the Goat. Capricorn, thought to be named originally for the ibex which mated at this same time of year, is the builder and the banker of the zodiac; hard working and solid yet agile, with an often understated glamour and a keen, if dry sense of humour. The Devil comes in many guises; often powerfully attractive. Or think of animal magnetism. That’s Pan for you. The Devil warns us to beware compulsion reminding us that we can get trapped by our own behaviour as much as by circumstance but we can choose to liberate ourselves by exercising the willpower sufficient to change the behaviour or the circumstance, bringing order out of chaos.
Aquarius (Jan 20-Feb 18)
Dominant element: Air. (Special note: Aquarius is sometimes mistakenly identified as a water sign because its symbol is the water carrier)
Astrological archetype: The Water Carrier. The Teacher.
Major Arcana card The Star – (hope, inspiration , humanitarianism).
The Star of hope has much in common with the imagery of the Aquarian Water Carrier. It shines its brightest, far-off light when everything else looks dark. The figure in the card has one foot in the water, symbolising her powers of intuition, and the other foot still on land, denotes her stability. Her knee is a bridge between elements. The stars symbolise the card’s over-arching message of guidance, hope and inspiration. Aquarius loves people as a general concept, but she is not one to blend in with the crowd, indicated by the biggest star above her head, which is bigger and set apart from the others.
Pisces (Feb 19-Mar 20)
Dominant element: Water.
Astrological archetype: The Fishes. The Seeker/Seer
Major Arcana card The Moon– (imagination, instinct, intuition)
Like Pisces, The Moon card is associated with the subconscious, and suggests that things are not always as they first appear. The Moon card also represents our secretive side or “shadow self”. The barking dog and the wolf in this card represent Pisces’ wild side sitting alongside its more domestic self. Pisces may seem gentle but the pull of the wild is strong, and so is the pull of the ocean’s tides. These people are deep. The crayfish crawling from the water represents “coming into consciousness” and the possession of psychic abilities, true of all signs in their different ways, but especially archetypal of Pisces.
Watch for the archetypes manifesting in real time all around you.
Brexit. I don’t know any more, or better than or anyone else, how it is all going to work out, but I’m bound to look in my cards, aren’t I?
And whether I get it right or wrong, I will learn something, by having the opportunity to look back, and see where and how I got it wrong in interpretation. There is no other school. That’s how readers develop.
I drew these cards on Friday 30 November, sat on them, and posted them on Twitter on Saturday 8, December during a frenzy of media and of course, public speculation ahead of Monday 10 December when Theresa May was due to put the proposed EU Deal to the vote in Parliament.
Cards Drawn 30 November
The most basic way of reading a yes or no from playing cards is to decide on your system and stick to it.
My system says red cards = yes, black suit cards = no, irrespective of the positive or negative meanings of the individual cards. Then I count. Then I may look at the individual cards for further ideas.
I laid out three rows of 5 cards. Using an odd number is helpful in yes/no counting spreads. Readers typically use 1, 3, 5 or 7 cards. This is simply a matter of personal preference.
Row 1: Will Parliament pass the Deal?
Row 2: Will there be another General Election called soon?
Row 3: Will there be a so-called ‘hard Brexit’?
Row 1: Will Parliament pass the Deal?
Still possible but highly unlikely. This picture had not shifted over the course of the week.
Row 2: Will there be another General Election called soon?
Still possible but highly Unlikely. That 7 of Spades in the final position is a real sinkhole of a card.
Row 3: Will there be a so-called ‘hard Brexit’? Far from certain. It’s almost ‘even Stevens.’ We have 2 red suit cards = yes, 2 black suit cards =No and the Joker which could go either way.
However. The Joker says, expect sudden changes, surprises and risk- taking behaviour – it is not necessarily irresponsible, while the 10 Diamonds as the final card raises the chances of a yes answer, because a red suit = yes as a kind of last word and a 10 is the number symbolic of completion.
A hard Brexit therefore, while looking far from certain, is at this date looking more likely than the other two scenarios.
I was interested to compare this with a reading shared here on True Tarot Tales in August re Deal or No Deal? The indications were that it would probably be No Deal, but the picture now in my cards is more fraught and complicated, which is perhaps entirely to be expected, given that we’re in the midst of the very fraught latter stage boilings of the process.
This is such a major and volatile situation, I drew another spread the following week, on Saturday 8 December, to see if, a week later, the cards were still telling the same story in respect of what Parliament was going to do on Monday 10 December in passing the proposed Deal or Not.
Is Parliament going to pass this Deal day after tomorrow, 10 December 2018?
I shared these cards and the interpretation on Twitter, tweeting it on 8 December at 4.32 PM
Future’s not a lump of concrete. Forecasting, by whatever means is @ sensing probabilities. This line of 5 cards confirms MPs will PROB not approve deal. QD =PM. AC =Pment The 2D MIGHT still just poss make a diff. Reps amendment re backstop? 2S and 4S =any exile of NI =a tomb.
The Queen of Diamonds is Theresa May.
The Ace Clubs is Parliament
The 2 Diamonds is a business partnership
The 2 of Spades is severance of a partnership. UK -EU-N Ireland border
The 4 Spades is sickness, entombment, retreat or even a rout.
Looking back, we see that the drawing of the final cards, the Four of Spades – ‘a tomb’- manifested in practise (UK spelling) as the cancellation or deferment. Or as it may yet emerge, shelving.
What does that venerable purveyor of prognostication, Old Moore’s Almanack have to say about it all?
Old Moore, published in Britain since 1697, famously uses Astrology as its go-to system of divination, and as many will be quick to point out, doesn’t always get it right, but historically predicted the Wall Street Crash and the start of WW2.
Old Moore has done an extensive report into Brexit as one would expect, but basically suggests that the UK is coming out as per Article 50, probably without EU deal, and says it sees no sign of a second referendum.
Economics post Brexit, it characterises as bumpy but not calamitous, some sectors grow/stabilise even early 2019 including Tourism, Education, the NHS and the service industries.
The national mood is very ‘Saturnian’, it says, whatever the power of the movement in favour of a second referendum, but that there is a strong current afoot in the national psyche of a Saturnian will to work, and an equally Saturnian drive for self- reliance (which is not necessarily to be confused or conflated with isolationism).
Time will tell of course, as with all forecasting, whether by polls, pundits, politicians or indeed, economists and top banking people. No need for sceptics of all findings of a supposedly non- rational provenance to point this out.
The workings of Divination are not supernatural, but based on the wonders of our natural human biology. Science knows full well that the gut speaks directly to the head, and often, if not always, it’s the gut that speaks first.
Perhaps Brexit could also be understood in the context of a grass-roots, if apparently delayed after-shock in response to the seismic shock of the financial crash of 2007.
Old Moore suggests Britain will keep calm and carry on…while suggesting possible major changes at No 10 later in 2019, maybe in June.
I had a weird dream about Theresa May last night. I’ve forgotten most of it, but she said she dreaded going to see the Queen.
Timing comes up a lot in Tarot readings. ‘When?’ asked a recent client, asking about the prospects of a trip…but this was not just a holiday trip being envisioned, but an activity-focused trip with a purpose. The client was also wondering about the possibilities of encountering a significant other on such a trip.
I drew the Six Wands…
Image Legacy of the Divine Tarot, Ciro Marchetti
‘I’m sensing late next July,’ I said, ‘maybe August. No surprises there then. Summer holidays. Bit of a no-brainer isn’t it?’
Why did I say these dates? The Six of Wands connects to the zodiac sign of Leo.
‘Well, yes, but I’m a teacher,’ the client said, ‘you’ve picked that up correctly…that I can only go away during school holidays. I went to Italy last year and I’ve been thinking about whether to go again back to the same place next year, same time.’
‘Would this to Siena by any chance?’ I said.
‘Wow,’ said the client, ‘not exactly, but it’s a little place not far off. Sort of in the middle of nowhere. But that’s amazing. How do you know?’
‘I don’t know,’ I said, ‘I only feel it. Look at the card. It just made me think of Siena. That rider here in the amphitheatre? It made me think of the square where they hold the Palio. But it never made me think of that before.’
The traditional keywords associated with the Six of Wands: A Yes answer, Success, Victory, Achievement, Awards, Supporters, Fans, Crowd, Rally, Goodwill, Compliments, Cheers, Applause, Sharing Success, Fairness, Self-Confidence, Self-Esteem, Pride, Good News, Politician, PR, Campaigns, Sales
I’ve drawn this card many times before of course. Sometimes it’s been talking about a car. Sometimes it has told me about a motorbike. Once it flagged up a sports trip coming up for a disabled athlete selected to go to with his team to the Para- Olympics. The Six of Wands has more than once before helped me decide which team I think will win a football match though I tend not to ‘go there’ much in public. I do now and then, but who needs trolls – or people ringing me up for betting tips?
Besides which, prescience is not remotely the same thing as omniscience.
But it has never said ‘Siena’ or ‘Palio’ before. The picture on the card was therefore functioning as a psychic trigger.
And first I had to draw that card. I had to shuffle and draw it blindly and at random in answer to the stated question. That card and no other.
77 other cards had to stay in the pack.
And it is that peculiar, acute and totally unconscious synchronicity that is so typical of Tarot.
Would I have picked up on this in the same way via, say, an email reading? There’s no knowing, but quite possibly not. This was a nuance plucked organically from the ether, the invisible electric space between me and the client.
Once upon a time I would probably not have even said it, judging it too silly, not wishing to risk it. Now I am older, less interested in what anyone else makes of it. Caveat emptor. The client doesn’t need to tell the reader much, only ask questions, but they need to be straight with the reader, play fair, no funny business trying to misdirect the reader, wasting time and energy.
It is as it is. For me now, to just do this reading thing is all. Sometimes it comes easy, other times less so.
UPDATE: 3 weeks after this reading I received a message from the client, generously wishing me to see an email just received from a contact in Italy, inviting the client to travel out to Siena for an olive harvesting event….and with a group visit to see….the Palio!
In the previous blog, I used cartomancy divination to look at the question of whether the UK would leave the Customs Union in 2020, and the overall reply was yes, using my playing cards, based on this spread shown below. The yes arises from the appearance of the Ace of Spades in the central column, which contains the final answer of the reading.
BUT talk about hot potato. What will it look like in practice? Let us look at it through the lens of the Tarot today.
Which of these options look more likely?
streamlined customs arrangement – which involves minimal customs checks and the use of new technology to enable as frictionless trade as possible. This option would allow the movement of goods between the UK and the EU to be monitored and recorded, with traders paying duties on a monthly or quarterly basis, rather than paying duties on every shipment or service traded. This is the option currently favoured by ‘Brexiteers’.
A customs partnership with the EU – which involves the UK acting as a tax collector for the EU whenever goods enter the UK. If the goods are bound for the UK, and if the UK tariff is lower than the EU tariff, traders could claim any difference. This was the option reportedly favoured by Mrs May, although it remains unclear whether she still supports it following the Cabinet meeting this week. See Here For Source
Today I have used my Tarot cards. The deck is the Divine Legacy Tarot deck used here for educational purposes by kind permission of the artist, Ciro Marchetti.
Cards for Option 1
streamlined customs arrangement – which involves minimal customs checks and the use of new technology to enable as friction-less trade as possible. This option would allow the movement of goods between the UK and the EU to be monitored and recorded, with traders paying duties on a monthly or quarterly basis, rather than paying duties on every shipment or service traded.
The card top left, drawn upside down, is the 3 of Coins, suggesting that a streamlined customs arrangement will be harder to implement to start with. This is a money card of craftsmanship and attention to detail, but blocked or delayed, and technology is not of itself the panacea.
The burden and onus on smaller businesses and sole traders, like the craftsman shown in the card, will be especially troublesome to start with, but thereafter, in the longer term, 4-9 years, The Hermit (Major Arcana 9, meaning maturity and independence, going it alone) the Four of Wands (one’s house is in order) and Strength (Major Arcana 8, meaning Courage, health and Power) as the destination card, suggests this option is front- end problematic but becomes a position of increasing Strength over the following 4-9 years.
Cards for Option 2
A customs partnership with the EU – which involves the UK acting as a tax collector for the EU whenever goods enter the UK. If the goods are bound for the UK, and if the UK tariff is lower than the EU tariff, traders could claim any difference. This was the option reportedly favoured by Mrs May,
Let’s look at the cards again without having to scroll up:
The first card out is Justice, due process and a need for fair play. We hit the ground running with an idea that is better received by the other side of the table, and with existing infrastructure and legal harmonisation. We wish to play fair, if we are played fair with. Justice is the cards of Libra, the Law and harmony. Key dates September 23-October 23.
This appears to trump the starting position for Option 1 hands down, and there is strong support for it.
The Queen of Cups here represents a key female figure, probably Theresa May herself, although she was represented in the previous playing card reading as a Queen of Diamonds (money queen, fast thinking and this equates more readily with the Tarot’s suit of Coins or Pentacles.) However, we are all multifaceted and this is a card of pouring oil on troubled waters. This is a card of a leader wishing to harmonize differences but is this actually possible if she is not met half way? The Queen of Cups is a peacemaker, and here, looking as she seems to be, out towards us, but also towards Justice, she has an eye here is the pictorial suggestion, to the House of Lords.
The Knight of Coins is a card of slow, steady growth and is by no means therefore a negative card in terms of what it seems to suggest about the financial well-being of the UK going this route.
The destination/outcome card for a mooted Customs Partnership is The 9 of Wands Reversed.
The upright 9 is a card of courage and determination, same as the Strength card but there is a blinkered rigidity, a narrowness about it, inferior to the expansiveness of the Strength card.
One may read this as the resistance of a hard Brexit lobby, but there seems no avoiding the conclusion that if the UK chooses a Customs Partnership based on the model under discussion, there will still need to be – this will be crucial to the national interest – the will, the power and the remit to do a lot of saying no.
Traditional Meanings of the 9 of Wands Reversed:
Rut, Off- Loading/Taking on More, Delegation, Taking Matters in Hand, Overhauling, Radical Change, Learning To Say No, Compromising, Weeding, Cutting Out The Dead Wood, Dumping, Reflecting, Learning/Not Learning from Mistakes, Giving Up on a Dream or Ambition, Letting Go, Giving Up/Holding On, Delays, Set Backs, No Reward after Immense Effort, Insurmountable Problems, Being Saddled, Taken Advantage Of, Resigned To Your Fate, ‘Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing’, Clearing Out.
The destination cards represent the likely future of the situation, or the advice upon which future developments will hinge, and The Strength card of option 1 trumps the 10 of Wands Reversed of option 2.
Option 2 may seem the easier route but in time it would become increasingly onerous.
But there may be yet another approach, or a twist on one of these options, that is not yet on the table.
What is not shown here either way in direct connection with the outcome either way? War, civil war or bankruptcy.
Summary. Option 1 – a streamlined customs agreement- drew as its outcome the Strength card- a card of physical and moral courage. Leo hunts because it must, but only to feed itself and support the pride, not with malice to waste, despoil or deny another.
An Exploration of the Shadow Side of Lost Dudeists Everywhere: Astrology, Tarot, Metaphysics, Tinfoil Hat Conspiracy Stuff, Other Weird Stuff, and sometimes Fertility Goddess Icons (Scantily Dressed Pinup Girls)