When The Tarot’s High Priestess was not One, but Two Greek Goddesses.

An artist wanted us to look at the year ahead in 2018. There was no specific question, and I drew 13 cards, one for each month of the year starting with January and laid them out anti-clockwise. The thirteenth card went in the centre and represented a key question, comment or theme, like so.

This is known as The Wheel of the Year Spread. There are variants.

Number 1 represents Aries the first House of the Zodiac and the start of the Astrological years.

Number 2 is Taurus, 3 is Gemini, 4 is Cancer, 5 is Leo, 6 is Virgo, 7 is Libra, 8 is Scorpio, 9 is Sagittarius, 10 is Capricorn. 11 is Aquarius and 12, Pisces.


Tarot spread year ahead


The central question card, the Eight of Coins, suggested to me that the client wished to explore and discuss work this coming year, and maybe income. You can see for yourself the relevance of this card, drawn from The Legacy of the Divine Tarot by Ciro Marchetti. (Promotional video)

3 coins legacy divine

My eye was quickly drawn to cards 6-8. There seemed to be a flurry of artistic impetus collected there, heralded by the appearance of The High Priestess in position 6, early autumn in 2018.

high priestess legacy divine tarot

The client draws, paints and sculpts animals, though not only animals, and is not only a very talented artist but a very generous patron of a number of small animal charities.

The High Priestess is an apt card for describing her. This is a lady well used to keeping her own counsel.  Her art is her shrine and it is sacred.

My eye was drawn to the owl. I could equally have chosen to focus on the scroll or the pomegranate but no, on this occasion it was the detail of the owl that drew me into the card.

Had she ever made a particular study of drawing or painting owls, or was she planning to? No, but the idea appealed, why did I ask?

Cue mad moment.

Reader duly opened gob and proceeded to do a thing one could inelegantly describe as gob-shiting….ie speak and not self- edit or self- censor.

‘I want to say, why do I want to say it? I don’t know, but I’m hearing it, so I’ll say it. There are two goddesses wanting to work with you, you are the priestess, your art is the shrine, but wild life is the greater shrine. There are two goddesses. One is Athena, and the other is Artemis.’

Athena and Bubo from C of the T

I was aware that the owl, specifically the Little Owl is the special bird of Athena, and that Artemis is the goddess and guardian of all wild creatures, but still, I had not read this card in this way before. Athena shown here as portrayed with her beloved ‘Bubo’ in Clash of the Titans.

We were doing the reading via Skype, using the web-cam.

‘Look at this, Katie-Ellen!’ the client leaned in close. ‘See this little medallion on my chain here?’

She held it forward to the camera.

‘Look!’ she said again, ‘I’ve got Athena on this side…’

She flipped it over…

‘And on this side, Artemis! How about that?’

How about that indeed.


She was delighted. It chimed a note she had been hoping to hear but didn’t have a question for finding, and this is typical of what Tarot can do when in full flow.

The Legacy of the Divine Tarot is a friendly, easy- to- use deck, modelled on the Rider-Waite and very suitable for any reader starting out.

The trick is to learn your stuff but then go with the flow. Easier said than done, but that’s what you need to do, to get those weird eureka! moments.

I’ll leave you with a picture of a Little Owl, Athene Noctua.  This individual is Dudley the Deadly, here he is, sitting on my gauntlet, the ferocious little scamp, and I met him at the Barn at Beal in Northumberland.

He pooped but missed my shoes. My lucky day.


Till next time 🙂


The High Priestess Reversed was a little fish villain….

The High Priestess Reversed was a little fish villain…..

When The High Priestess (Reversed) was a fishy affair….

ktln at home june 2015 1

Idly playing with my cards at the dining table, I asked Il Matrimonio what he was doing with the fish tanks. He kept two tanks of tropical fish at that time, guppies in one, neon tetras in the tank in the dining room.

Male guppies are colourful, every individual’s unique. The females are drab coloured.  They produce live babies, but the adults tend to cannibalise the newborns if they don’t make for the weeds as soon as they emerge, and hide there until they’re too big to be eaten. Awww. So sweeeet.

Neon tetras are small and slim, blue, red and white, with a zingy neon strip along their sides, as the name suggests.

The hubby explained that he was introducing a young male guppy into the tetra tank for his own safety. Whereupon, using my old Universal Waite deck that day, I drew The High Priestess. (US Games)


However, I work with reversed cards, and I drew her reversed. A reversed card is not necessarily negative in connotation. It may simply flag up an area requiring special care. But I felt this was a warning, to be read in a literal sense.

‘I don’t think you should do that,’ I said. ‘I’m seeing danger here from a lady who is blue, white and red.  I think the tetras will have him if you put him in there, and I think he won’t last two weeks.’

(Tarot can work like this with timing. The High Priestess is Major Trump 2.)

Il Matrimonio was having none of it. The tetras were no risk to the guppy, they were too small, completely harmless. What did I know about tropical fish, etc etc?

Eff all, it is true. Please, any proper a-fish-ionad-os reading this, do not troll me on this score. But the reader does not have to factually know. That is the point and indeed the potential usefulness of oracular divination.

‘Ok,’ I said, ‘in which case it is a warning against the tetra tank. I wouldn’t put him in there.’

‘Well, he won’t last if I leave him where he is.’

A few days later, poor guppy was gone. RIP. Not so much as a fin left.

Not saying the tetras did it any harm. It might have been something about the tank, and maybe guppy was toast whatever Il Matrimonio did, but they certainly cleaned him away.

All we had left were the tetras, swimming innocently about,  the piscine little High Priests/esses in their grotto.

Till next time 🙂


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