Monday, January 31, 2011

Ten of Swords/Ace of Wands reversed. The Ten of Swords (the Sun, the inner core of a person or situation, in Gemini, “I think,” curious, sociable, dual, talkative) tells me that failure is not fun, but we can’t release the failure unless we play it through to the end, without feeling sorry for ourselves. The Ace of Wands (Cancer, Leo, “I am,” passionate, dramatic, egotistical, Virgo, “I serve,” practical, analytical, sensible, orderly) in an upright position tells of the first spark of a new and exciting creative process, and an encouraging and empowering awareness of my own valuable creative talents. Because the card is reversed and paired with the Ten of Swords, I may not be too confident about those talents, but they are there! If I add a bit of creativity to all that Air found in the suit of Swords, I might be able to distract my mind from what it sees as mistakes.

My Thoth card is Adjustment. Uncle Al sees he Adjustment card (Justice in the traditional Tarot decks) as telling of a need for adjustment, and isn’t that actually what justice is, in the end? This card is about cause and effect, and about the adjustments that happen when we think about causes, and try to make their effects as positive as possible. Adjustment corresponds with the element of Air (hot/separates and wet/adapts, and quick, animated energy that usually brings problems or challenges that bring growth), Libra (“we are,” partnerships, balance, cooperation), Lamed (ox goad; training or teaching), and the Path between Tiphareth (the hub of the creation process where energies harmonize and focus to illuminate and clarify) and Geburah (the place where forms and structures are challenged or affirmed). Interestingly enough, this card can also focus on achieving the balance between the inner self and the outer self; a focus of mine of late.

My Legacy card is the Six of Swords reversed, flavored by The Magician. Wow, interesting pair. The Six of Swords (Mercury, reason, intelligence, education, communication, in Aquarius, “I know,” friendships, the group, cause oriented) in an upright position is about hitting the reset button in order to move away fro a problem. Because it is reversed, today’s problems won’t be solved by walking away. The Magician corresponds with Air (hot/separates and wet/adapts, and quick and animated energy which usually presents problems or challenges), Mercury, Beth (house; builder) and the Path between Binah (female, receptive energy and the origin of form and structure) and Kether (the source, limitless possibility), and he is flavoring the Six of Swords reversed. Since he has the power to transform his world through the use of his Will, he is validating this interpretation of the Six of Swords reversed; I can fix things so I should not run away from them.

My 6-digit date number is 7 the number that tells of the pause at the beginning of degeneration.

My horoscopes: “Today you may decide to study healing, Sagittarius. You could read about alternative methods regarding diet, herbs, aromatherapy, massage, or acupuncture. You might decide to learn some hands-on methods. Whether or not you ever practice any of these professionally, learning about them should transform your life for the better on both physical and emotional levels. Make the most of it.”

And: “If you've been looking for inspiration lately, get with your wackiest friends or family. Surround yourself with the people who look at the world from an odd angle, and you'll be able to see things in a whole new way, too. Seek controversy today -- play devil's advocate as often as you can. You'll encourage people to be passionate about what they believe -- and passion can be contagious. Before you know it, you'll be struck by it.”

And: “Today you may sit down at the computer for just a minute to research something on the Internet and wind up spending most of the afternoon entranced by what you're reading. You could very well stumble upon some information on the occult and mysticism. You've always been fascinated, and now that you've begun learning you don't want to stop. Perhaps you could enroll in a workshop to learn and mingle with others with a similar interest.”

I have come to believe that building cannot happen without tearing down; and not just one session of demolition is enough. Each cycle requires a greater time of demolition. My Lady Danu keeps reminding me that I should be pleased, complimented and excited that my tests have become soooooo daaarrrrnnned difficult to resolve. She won't test me beyond my ability to succeed, but She will push the envelope. And I am already finding that my recent moments of disillusionment are serving me well, plus they are helping me to serve others, by teaching me to keep my own frame of mind strong and solid and serene and unshakable, with a good foundation of experiences to draw upon.

And still, Danu is with me and tells me that even if the results of any of my efforts are not what I want, I have not failed; she reminds me that in the end, I can only control my own choices. But more important, because of my own recent Dark Nights, brief as they are, I have been able to handle recent challenges without becoming totally undone myself because for me, today, these are not major issues. Even a month ago, these events may have totally derailed me for a bit, but not since my own Dark Nights of late.

Yes, I am different than I was even a month ago. This difference is hard to describe to others, and is hard to even talk about at all. I feel that I am being tested constantly, being pushed out into the world to manifest more bits of what I have learned in all my inner work this past Winter. I feel that I am being told that I must become The Magician, for I cannot truly understand my inner work unless I have completely manifested it in an outer fashion. LOL, does that make sense? I think the most frightening (and exhilarating!) part is that this is not about reading a lesson written by someone else, and then answering some homework questions or writing some essays. No one else has been here, so there are no guide books. I am not only finding my own way into uncharted territory, but I am writing my own lessons in order to do my own homework.

The thing about feeling my way through the dark is that the Seven of Pentacles moment doesn't appear until much later. I don't get the gratification of seeing where I've come from because it is still dark back there. I will need to complete the cycle before I can see what I've done and where I’ve come from, and that is a bit scary for I have no reference points. But as Danu keeps telling me, I need to remember the reason that I am being tested in such a manner. I don’t need someone else’s reference points for they won’t work for me. I must find my own.

No turning back, indeed!

Ted Andrews states in “More Simplified Magick: Pathworking and The Tree of Life,” regarding the 32nd Path: “On this path, the symbols and images awaken fears that burden the imagination and block our flows of energies. The working of this path clears and liberates us from the weight of physical existence in its many forms.” Yes, I understand this. I strive for understanding, for Purpose, but I also know that I am moving into unknown territory here, so understanding may not be immediate, and Purpose may not be clear. Because I have come so far already, I have learned patience and perseverance. The answers will come; the clarity will happen, because of the burdens and blockages.

The 32nd Path shows us our limitations for one purpose: to learn that they can only hold us back if we allow them to. Experiencing blockages teaches me how to unblock them, how to not allow them to deter my forward motion. This is a slow process which needs time in order to come to fruit, as well as focus and effort. What helps me to persevere is that I know there is a purpose to this muddy, cloudy time.


Friday, January 28, 2011

Five of Wands reversed/Queen of Pentacles reversed. The Five of Wands in an upright position represents Saturn (discipline, responsibility, law and order) in Leo (“I am, passionate, dramatic, egotistical), and it represents a struggle that appears at crossed purposes. It is reversed, so the struggle is not an issue today, or at lest the struggle won’t be as bad as it appears. The Queen of Pentacles (cusp of Sagittarius, “I seek,” philosophic, adventurous, blundering, and Capricorn, “I build,” ambitious, cautious, competent, cunning) is one of my favorite cards. She is the Minor Arcana version of The Empress, and while she may not be able to create new life, she is very good at sustaining life of all kinds. She tells me that spiritual enlightenment can be found through a secure foundation, a happy home.

My Thoth card is the Ace of Cups. The Ace of Cups (Libra, “We are,” partnerships, balance, cooperation, Scorpio, “I desire,” intense, deep, mysterious, obsessive, Sagittarius, “I seek,” philosophic, fun-loving, adventurous, blundering) tells of the possibility of the beginning of a relationship of some kind, one that may be filled with the potential to bring enlightenment and understanding. This Ace is not a guaranty of happiness, but it tells me that I have the power to make happiness for myself. Crowley sees this card as representing the Holy Grail, and as telling me that love is the answer to every question.

My Legacy card is the Eight of Wands reversed, flavored by The Moon. The Eight of Wands (Mercury, reason, intelligence, education, skill, communication, in Sagittarius, “I seek,” philosophic, fun-loving, adventurous, blundering) in an upright position is about a sudden release of energy of some kind that clears away confusion. Because the card is reversed, there may be a heaviness and lack of action about his energies today. The Moon in an upright position corresponds with Water (cold/binds and wet/adapts, emotional and sensitive energy that strives to stay the same), Pisces (“I believe,” feeling, suffering, soul growth, duality), Qof (the back of the head), and the Path between Malkuth (the physical world of action and physical, outer reality) and Netzach (the stimulating factors of emotion and inspiration), and talks about the imagination and fear of the unknown. Its presence usually indicates that things are not as they seem to be; because it is reversed, I need to remember that things that look different are not to be feared.

My 6-digit date number is 4, the number of depth and stability.

My horoscopes: “Stress, strain, and a little conflict within a business, romantic, or creative partnership could have you toying with the idea of ending it, Sagittarius. Don't do anything rash right now. Wait a day or so and then think about it. This is likely to be a temporary situation. If you break it off now you will probably regret it tomorrow. Spend time alone and give your partner some space.”

And: “Right from the start of the day you'll have a huge wave of energy that could propel you in the wrong direction if you don't steer it right as early as possible. Timing is everything, so leave the fun stuff for the afternoon or evening. You need to be devoted to your latest tasks -- be proactive, and if you see something that needs to be addressed, then add it onto your list of things to do. You'll have the energy to handle it, so don't put it off for another day.”

And: “An emotional issue with a family member could have you wanting to run away and hide somewhere. Don't fight the urge - this may be just what you need to clear your mind with regards to the problem and heal your wounded psyche before you face this person again. You might also receive some rather disconcerting revelations about yourself and old traumas that you have long since forgotten. Don't fight these either. Simply release them.”

More about the 32nd Path. This Path focuses on revealing the hidden, both the hidden workings of the physical world and the hidden parts of ourselves, hidden from others and hidden from our own awareness. The subconscious is the repository of all the things we don’t want to face in a conscious manner, and the subconscious is the place where we create, where we do magick. Working with the 32nd Path opens the gateway between a physical world only focus and an awareness of the other worlds. Working with this Path shines a revealing light into the subconscious, just as the Moon lights the darkest night. These revelations may be frightening at first, but once we find the courage to face what is revealed to us and come to understand us, we will be liberated on many levels.

I need to be forewarned that the work I do with this Path will manifest challenges and blockages, but I should remember that these challenges and blockages are like red flags that point out areas which need work and effort. The gift of the 32nd Path is a balance between flow and restriction, and the ability to hear the voice of the Higher Self even in times of darkness. **smile** I know that I have been learning this particular lesson of late.

This first Path represents our first steps outside our physical bodies because the journey from Malkuth to Yesod represents our first attempts at meditation. Now I understand why many use the Paths of the Tree of Life as a tool for growth.


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Five of Cups reversed/Judgement. The Five of Cups (Mars, action, aggression, drive, in Scorpio, “I desire,” intense, controlling, mysterious, obsessive) tells of the cloudy sludge that is stirred up when still waters are disturbed. This card in an upright position reminds us not to give up hope, even if there are a few snags in the day. Because it is reversed, this Five is telling me that those snags probably won’t hold me back, at least emotionally. Judgement corresponds with Fire (hot/separates and dry/shapes, and spontaneous, impulsive and energetic change), Pluto (power, metamorphosis, cycles of dying and becoming), Shin (fang), and the Path between Malkuth (the physical world of action and physical, outer reality) and Hod (provides analysis and communication), and represents the integration of the entire self, through answering for my actions and receiving the appropriate response. This process might not be as painful as I anticipate, thanks to the Five of Cups reversed. Judgement also reminds me that where I’ve been has a direct effect on where I am now, and where I think I’m going.

My Thoth card is the Six of Disks. “Success” is Uncle Al’s keyword for this card, which has been showing up for me lately, both upright and reversed. The Thoth Six of Disks (Moon, feelings and emotions, illusion, imagination, in Taurus, “I have,” sensual, cautious, stubborn) has a heavy feel to it, and I guess in a way that makes sense. The thing that we need to remember about success is that it takes maintenance; we can’t just reach the appropriate level and then sit back; rather, we must keep alert and do what we have to in order to keep momentum alive.

My Legacy card is the Knight of Swords, flavored by The Moon reversed. The Knight of Swords (the cusp of Taurus, “I have,” sensual, stubborn, cautious, and Gemini, “I think,” curious, talkative, dual, intelligent) is somewhat scary to behold. He is not afraid of taking action, not afraid of wading into conflicts, and not afraid to implement new ideas. Emotions and compassion are absolutely not a part of his M.O., and for the good or the bad, he believes in himself completely. The Moon in an upright position corresponds with Water (cold/binds and wet/adapts, emotional and sensitive energy that strives to stay the same), Pisces (“I believe,” feeling, suffering, soul growth, duality), Qof (the back of the head), and the Path between Malkuth (the physical world of action and physical, outer reality) and Netzach (the stimulating factors of emotion and inspiration), and talks about the imagination and fear of the unknown. Its presence here tells me that things are not as they seem to be; because it is reversed, I may very well be missing something important, or making an assumption based on faulty information. I need to look again, carefully.

My 6-digit date number is 11 (Archangel Uriel), which reduces to the number 2, representing balance, polarity and distance between.

My horoscopes: “Errands seem to rule the day. You spend most of it in the car, running hither and yon. Don't be surprised if you run into an old friend you haven't seen in a while. The casual pleasantries you exchange could develop into something more. Perhaps you will discover a common interest and decide to build a business based on it. Keep your eyes (and mind) wide open.”

And: “A birth or other type of new beginning introduces you to an interesting philosophy today. It's like a light is shining in a new corner of the world, and you're very intrigued to see what's there. Feel free to explore your curiosities -- it's very healthy and mature to educate yourself on things you don't yet understand. Get together with people who know more than you do, and start talking. Discussion is one of the best ways to truly understand a concept.”

And: “You are feeling especially psychic and mystically inclined today. You might want to read about such matters, or attend a lecture or workshop given by someone in the field. Telepathic communications are coming your way; don't be surprised if more than once during the course of the day you and another say the exact same thing at the exact same time! You might also experience a powerful kinship with people from the past.”

The 32nd Path is the first of the initiatory Paths. It connects Malkuth, the sphere of the physical and active world, with Yesod, the sphere of the life force which animates the physical world. The 32nd Path is about birth, and about death; it reminds us that birth **is** death, for when we are born, we leave behind all memories of past experiences and move into a new existence. This is exactly what happens to us when we die as well.

Any time we meditate or contemplate or journey, we are traveling the 32nd Path. My moments of glimpses of the Machinery of the Universe are firmly placed upon this Path, as is any pondering that first brings us to understand our own self, and then shows us how small we are and how huge our Universe can be. Yet, we also come to understand that as small as we are, we have a place in this vast and wondrous Universe, and one purpose of life and of living is to find that place.

Indeed, one of the tasks of this Path is to understand physical life, its causes and its needs. This understanding of our physical foundation allows us to come to know our energy body and our life force, and to understand and experience the way that they are bound to our physical self.

One symbol of this Path is the rainbow; the rainbow is an illusion of light which can only be seen from one direction. Ellen Cannon Reed mentions something very cool in her book, “The Witches Tarot,” which will make this 32nd Path easy for me to remember; she reminds us that Malkuth corresponds with Earth and Yesod corresponds with the Moon, and thus every astronaut who has stepped foot on the Moon has traveled the 32nd Path.

The Major Arcana card which corresponds to the 32nd Path is The World. The traditional image on this card is filled with symbolism: the womb, the Giver of Life/Taker of Life, the four elements, matter/energy/time/space, a circle without end, and the Divine energy which connects us all. The World tells us that we have achieved the union of the conscious self with the unconscious self, the mind with the body, and for a time, we are one with Deity and with the Universe. But while the tasks of this cycle have been completed and the lessons of this cycle have been learned, we are not to stop for long. The cycles of life are eternal, and once we pass through the threshold, we must begin again.

I feel that I have been working with the 32nd Path for some time. Thinking about it today, reading about it, is helping me to crystallize my own thoughts regarding these experiences.

I am off to a good start.


Monday, January 24, 2011

Knight of Pentacles reversed/Three of Cups reversed. The Knight of Pentacles (cusp of Leo, “I am,” passionate, dramatic, egotistical, and Virgo, “I serve,” practical, analytical, work and service oriented), like all Knights, represents extreme manifestations of his suit, Pentacles. He seems to focus on how to get things done, rather than why things need to be done, and since he is reversed, I may find that today, I am not focusing enough on responsibilities because I am distracted by the pleasures of the physical world. Things are not getting done, and while there is nothing wrong with enjoying a good cup of coffee or the warmth of the fireplace, I should try to get at least a bit of practical work done today. The Three of Cups (Mercury, reason, intelligence, orderliness, communication, in Cancer, “I feel,” sensitive tenacious, nurturing, moody) in an upright position tells of the possibility of experiencing emotional abundance and support as a part of the day. Because the card is reversed, I may find that emotional sustenance will not be easily found through my contacts with others.

My Thoth card is The Moon. The Moon in an upright position corresponds with Water (cold/binds and wet/adapts, emotional and sensitive energy that strives to stay the same), Pisces (“I believe,” feeling, suffering, soul growth, duality), Qof (the back of the head), and the Path between Malkuth (the physical world of action and physical, outer reality) and Netzach (the stimulating factors of emotion and inspiration), and talks about the imagination and fear of the unknown. Uncle Al also connects this card to the waning moon and to menstrual blood (which means that the promise of the seed was not fulfilled). The thing about The Moon is that to me, it is mostly about fear, fear of the unknown and of things not understood. But if nothing is as it seems, then perhaps there really is not anything to fear. Perhaps the lack of clarity can be turned into a useful tool.

My Legacy card is the Six of Cups, flavored by the Nine of Coins. The Six of Cups (Sun, the inner core of a person or situation in Scorpio, “I desire,” intense, compulsive, deep, obsessive) reminds me that happiness comes from within me, and happiness needs no expensive surroundings in order to manifest. This happiness may be fed and supported by memories of the past, or by seeing things from the viewpoint of a child, but no matter what, there is potential to be had. The Nine of Coins (Venus, beauty, allure, relationships, in Virgo, “I serve,” practical, analytical, work and service oriented) is a card of accomplishment, and of the pleasure we receive from looking around us and seeing the fruits of our labor. The Nine of Coins is also about taming the wild beast within us all, but I wonder if there is some danger to taming the beast too well. The Six of Cups reminds me that the innocence of childhood also contains the power of belief in the unproven. The flavor of the Nine of Coins may bring a bit of structure to the lovely feelings associated with the Six of Cups, but it is my feelings and the instructions of my Inner Voice that must have the final say today.

My 6-digit date number is 9, the number of completeness of manifestation.

My horoscopes: “You usually tend to be outgoing, Sagittarius, and you love talking to others. However, today you may feel far more reticent than usual, more inclined to listen than speak. There may not seem to be any real reason for this. It isn't as if you're depressed or worried. Don't worry about it. View this as an opportunity to hear what others have to say. You will be yourself tomorrow.”

And: “Your intuition, physical and intellectual energy, and insight are at an all-time high today. You'll probably want to spend much of the day alone, reflecting on your ideas and deciding how you want to put them to work for you. At some point you may want to memorialize your thoughts in writing. You could also find yourself tuning in more strongly than usual to the thoughts and feelings of others.”

One of the true tests to the relevancy of someone’s writings (either my own or someone else’s) is to return to those writings after the elapsing of a sufficient amount of time. If the things I read (or wrote) months and even years ago are still valid, or better yet, end up offering current validation to me, despite the fact that I read or wrote the text at a very different stage of my life, then I am usually impressed. Since I finished my first reading of “When I See The Wild God: Encountering Urban Celtic Witchcraft,” by Ly De Angeles, I decided to go back to her previous book, “Witchcraft: Theory and Practice,” which I own, and re-read that book. Imagine my pleasure when, right at the beginning, I found phrases and paragraphs that present in other words the very things that I am dealing with within my Craft.

“Anyone who willingly opens themselves to powers beyond the veil of manifestation (as we understand it) opens themselves to the possibility of inner initiation. Witches know that they are witches, but initiation is what sets and seals that knowledge through the power of ritual and the intent inherent to the process itself, to a deeper strata of recognition and response both within oneself and from the powers to which we are oathed. Once initiation has occurred, there is no turning back – you will quest all your life; it is not a thing to do thoughtlessly. Once you have chosen to take upon yourself the obligations of the practice of witchcraft, then the effects, or the immanence, of this way of life, will be bestowed on you from aligned intelligences, and so will the tests that accompany them.” Oh yes. Exactly right.

And: “The nature of initiation will keep you questing for the rest of your life. There will be no surcease. There is no walking away from this once it has called your name and you have willingly answered. The forces that you work with will continue to feed and inspire you; and everything ends up being looked at through eyes that know how to see.”

I got the chills when I read the last part of that last sentence, “. . . and everything ends up being looked at through eyes that know how to see.” Wow; that says so much to me, those words resonate within me in so many ways.

Tara and I have both come to a realization: the deeper we immerse ourselves into our own training, the less we are able to talk about what we learn with others and still find the right words to convey the magick and power of our experiences. This effect ends up insulating us from those around us, particularly those who are not of the “woo-woo” persuasion. **smile** Believe me, I wish I had a pic of my husband’s face the first time I talked to him about my personal Spirit Guides. But here is the thing: Once I have come to begin the process of understanding my own personal truth, I have found that I end up owing “service” (for want of a better word) to that truth. That service involves not allowing fear or discomfort to siderail my efforts, and it involves being on call when I am changed or moved by contact and interactions with the intelligence of the forces which are presenting these truths to me.

Just as Goddess and God are programmed to respond to requests for interaction, I, too, have a responsibility to respond to questions for interaction. The difficulty here is that I cannot allow myself to become totally distracted from being a student myself. This balance between leading others, and being led by others, needs to be kept dynamic, and both roles need to be acknowledged and accepted.

One final thought: the deeper I immerse myself into these studies, the more jarring and unharmonious will be the deviations. As long as I stay on the Path, I will experience harmony and well being; if I stray, the warnings will become more and more “in my face”; because my energy field is being made more and more harmonious to the essence of life that is Deity, even a slight distraction will end up having an uncomfortable outcome.

Since Paths 32, 31 and 30 are connected to initiation, I believe the time has come for me to begin my Pathworking. Tomorrow, I will talk about the 32nd Path.


Friday, January 21, 2011

The Hierophant reversed/The Universe. The Hierophant corresponds with Earth (cold/binds and dry/shapes), Taurus (“I have,” sensual, cautious, stubborn), Vau (the nail which holds tradition in place), and the Path between Chesed (the place where forms and structures are stabilized and nurtured), and Chokmah (dynamic male energy, the origin of vital force and polarity). The Hierophant is the nail which holds in place tradition and culture. In an upright position, this card tells us that the old ways and the ancient traditions speak to the moment; an understanding of these ways is worth attaining for they are all part and parcel of alchemical transformation. Because the card is reversed, accepted tradition may end up being a fence rather than a guide for me today. The Universe/World (Earth, cold/binds and dry/shapes, stable, physical, material, slow to change; Saturn, discipline, responsibility, limitations and resistance; Thav, mark or sign; and the Path between Malkuth, the physical world of action and physical reality, and Yesod, the place where patterns and images emerge that may manifest into Malkuth) is an interesting card to show up next to The Hierophant in a reversed position. The Universe tells me that I have achieved union with both my conscious and my subconscious mind, and the next step is union with the Divine. The Threshold has presented itself to me, the Gateway is right in front of me; I need to remember that once I step through, I will not only be dealing with the unknown (because any structure or order that I have attained thus far will be no long applicable), but I will also once again become a neophyte (because along with that order and structure, everything that I have come to know as my own personal “truth” will be changed). Perhaps the reversed Hierophant is reminding me that seeing myself as the expert can end up shutting me away from all learning.

My Thoth card is the Seven of Disks. “Failure” reversed; in an upright position, the Seven of Disks (Saturn, discipline, responsibility, law and order, in Taurus, “I have,” sensual, cautious, stubborn) tells of what happens when you combine the element of Earth and its focus on stability with the planet Saturn, which is about responsibility and discipline. Crowley sees this card as representing extreme passivity, and since the card is the number 7, that passivity could very well have been caused by the vertical and horizontal balance of the number 6. The card is reversed, thankfully, but it is there, so I need to be careful that it does not become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Pausing to assess is a good thing, but I need to be certain that I act on what I discover, so that I can prevent that stagnation.

My Legacy card is The Hierophant, flavored by the Five of Cups. Bookend Hierophants!! The Legacy Hierophant is called “Faith,” and the image of this card presents representations of the four major organized religions in our world, each presented as being in harmony with the other three. Joining them together is a pillar of light that represents faith, the common denominator of each tradition. The Five of Cups (Mars, action, aggression, drive, in Scorpio, “I desire,” intense, controlling, mysterious, obsessive) tells of the cloudy sludge that is stirred up when still waters are disturbed. This card is reminding me to not give up hope, even if there are a few snags in my day. It makes a wonderful pair with The Hierophant, for the Five of Cups tells us that while we may be poor in the physical world, spiritual fulfillment is available to even those with no money.

Okay, more about my bookends card. The Hierophant is the archetype of beliefs, and tells of pure force being brought to us on both the physical plane and within spiritual reality; indeed this card is considered the Eternal Intelligence, because it represents the Pleasure of the Glory. The Hierophant is paired with The High Priestess, and the best way to understand this card is through the Great Rite. The Hierophant is the physical world representation of pure force and the Sacred Masculine; he corresponds with Taurus the bull, and with the ox, both of which are representations of the Horned God. The Hierophant is the initiator of the Mysteries, and thus he is the bridge between the Outer Circle of students and the Inner Circle of Adepts. While this card can represent a single person, it is better described as representing an institution, because it is the power of the group and of society that changes the world via their beliefs.

My 6-digit date number is 6, the number of vertical and horizontal balance.

My horoscopes: “Expanding your horizons is the key for today, Sagittarius. Communications received from distant states or foreign lands could have you entertaining the idea of traveling to those places. Learning is very much on your mind. You're probably curious about different cultures, ideas, and perspectives. Even though you might not make definite plans for travel now, you're apt to at least consider it.”

And: “There's one particular condition that's absolutely lethal to your sign when it comes to relating to the rest of us: Righteous anger. You're feeling that now, and for good reason. Warn any innocent spectators to step away before the explosion occurs -- especially since the heavens have endowed you with the ability to let whoever pushes your buttons have it with every bit of intellectual anger and perfect prose you've got -- in no small amount, either.”

And: “Your internal fire may be feeling a bit smothered by a fierce reality check today. Give people the benefit of the doubt. They are more perceptive than you may think. In fact, it may behoove you to get some honest feedback today from some people you trust. It may be difficult for you to sort out the truth in your present situation since you are the one caught in the middle of the maelstrom. Consider the perspective of another.”

Along with the wallowing in the muck that was my short but intense Dark Night, and along with all of the wonderful progress I have made along with this Dark Night, I had a truly Five of Wands kind of day on Wednesday. I call this situation a “turnsta day,” a day when everything I touch “turnsta” dog poop. By the end of the evening, I was feeling a bit bewildered by the horrors that had unfolded continuously throughout the day.

“Horrors” might not be the right word, but for someone like me, making a string of minor booboos that happen mainly because I am not paying attention (yep, minor conflicts of the Five of Wands) is torture. It’s as if my “dumb” switch gets thrown, and then stuck in the On position. Each time I took a deep breath and attempted to put it all behind me, I discovered another mistake that I had made.

Of course, I put everything to rights, and I took responsibility for my actions (LOL, or in most cases, my inadvertent non-actions). And then I admit that I whined a bit to Danu. After all, I had made it through my Dark Night with my “self” intact, and I had even had moments of connection to Deity and minor glimpses of the Machinery of the Universe both before and after my Dark Night. I had felt, before Wednesday morning, that I had a handle on things. My cold was even fading away. And then, everything turnsta dog poop.

Danu put me to rights. She told me that actually, she was quite pleased with the way that I had dealt with the day. Pleased? I was almost in tears by the time I discovered the last few mistakes that I had made; I was wondering what the heck was wrong with me. Danu was pleased, however, because of how many times She had to pull the rug back out from under my feet before I finally lost it.

She explained to me that I had better expect that the challenges that block my way will become larger and more difficult to solve. And She reminded me of my current favorite saying, a saying which everyone who I love has heard from me at some point: “ You don’t really ever know you have courage unless you experience real fear.” I had been given a gentler opportunity to learn with my mind and my heart and my spirit the lesson of that saying. I had been given discouragement, and proved to myself that I have fortitude.

“Did you not have your own strength validated?” She asked. I nodded; yes, I did have my own strength validated. In a big way. Thank you, Danu.

This evening, I finally had an opportunity to perform the ritual that Hecate had tasked me with. This ritual was to be performed without words at all, only images and visualizations. It was to be a formal ritual, with a cast circle and called quarters, with Deities invoked, and it was to focus on the crossroad of dawn in relation to my new business endeavor. It was amazing.

I timed the ritual so that it took place at sundown. I made use of visualizations, my chakras, and my personal energy field to gather and charge energies. To my delight, I felt the presence of Cernunos, a strong and vital and powerful presence, along with the fertility of the Sacred Feminine, and each of my Elemental Guides joined me in their respective quarters, offering their unique support. My Air Guide offered clarity of thinking so that I may best manifest new ideas, my Fire Guide offered me passion and excitement and the ability to transform myself, my Water Guide offered me compassion and the power to heal and the ability to hear my own Inner Voice, and my Earth Guide offered me a stronger connection to my own physical body and to the physical bodies of my clients as well as the potential to achieve physical world security. I drew these gifts into me as I watched the glory that was this evening’s sunset. Then, once it was full dark and the moon had risen, I spent a few more minutes enjoying the silver illumination in the dark Winter sky.

Then, I released the energy, believing that it will manifest.

It has been an up and down week. But surprisingly, I feel good tonight. Perhaps this is the vertical and horizontal balance presented by the number 6.


Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The Lovers/Judgement reversed. The Lovers (Air, hot/separates and wet/adapts, quick and animated, intellectual, problems or challenges; Gemini, “I think,” curious, talkative, sociable, dual; Zayin, double-edged sword; and the Path between Tiphareth, the hub of the creation process where energies harmonize and focus to illuminate and clarify, and Binah, female receptive energy and the origin of form and structure) is a very powerful card for me personally, filled with symbolism, the least of which is the presence of Archangel Uriel and His effects on my day. And He has had a voice, a synchronistic voice, for me. The Lovers is not only about love (both my own love and relationships, and the sacred love shared between Goddess and God), but it is about personal choices, and both love and personal choices will come into play for me today. Judgement corresponds with Fire (hot/separates and dry/shapes, and spontaneous, impulsive and energetic change), Pluto (power, metamorphosis, cycles of dying and becoming), Shin (fang), and the Path between Malkuth (the physical world of action and physical, outer reality) and Hod (provides analysis and communication), and in an upright position it represents the integration of the entire self, through answering for your actions and receiving the appropriate response. Because the card is reversed, that integration is not happening right now, but the potential for it to happen is there because the card is there. I must remember that where I have been determines where I am going, and perhaps I need to look back a bit before I begin to move forward once again. I should also remember the dangers of judging another; this card could be reversed as a warning to me to **not** judge another person or a situation.

My Thoth card is the Six of Disks reversed. “Success” reversed; this card has been showing up for me lately. The Thoth Six of Disks (Moon, feelings and emotions, illusion, imagination, in Taurus, “I have,” sensual, cautious, stubborn) has a heavy feel to it, and I guess in a way that makes sense. We tend to not think about our resources until we feel we might need them. Because the card is reversed, I am being told that I may be dealing with a lack of resources today in some manner. But if I listen to the message of my first two cards, I should be able to carry the day.

My Legacy card is The Emperor reversed, flavored by Death reversed. . The Emperor (Fire, hot/separates and dry/shapes, and spontaneous, impulsive, energetic change; Aries, “I want,” action oriented, assertive, competitive; Heh, window, illumination; and the Path between Tiphareth and Chokmah, dynamic male energy and the origin of vital force and polarity) represents the power of the mind and of intentions to shape the world. He is about taking responsibility, and he is about manifesting his good intentions through order and stability and structure and regulation. All of these things are imposed ethically, with the best interests of all kept in mind. He is indeed a regulating force, a leader who leads by example. Because he is reversed, I may be dealing with events today that will make it difficult for me to maintain order, or lead as an example. But the card is there, so there is hope. The Death card corresponds with Water (cold/binds and wet/adapts, and sensitive, imaginative energy that strives to stay the same or take the same course), Scorpio, Nun (fish head; liberation), and the Path between Tiphareth and Netzach (the stimulating factors of emotion and inspiration), and tells of transformation or change, both voluntary and involuntary. Most of the time, this change is connected in some way to existing circumstances, and can seem to be brought about by destruction or endings, but the destruction or endings are not what they seem. Because the card is reversed, I may end up fearing change, or alternatively, feeling that change is not happening fast enough or the way it was supposed to happen. But since the card is reversed, I should not worry, for the actual change itself should be winding down, and it will soon be time to begin anew, with a fresh start filled with optimism.

My Pearls of Wisdom Full Moon card is the Eight of Wands reversed. The Eight of Wands (Mercury, reason, intelligence, education, skill, communication, in Sagittarius, “I seek,” philosophic, fun-loving, adventurous, blundering) in an upright position tells of the completion of a lesson or cycle that makes room for a new beginning. This completion is often accomplished by a sudden burst or release of energy. Because the card is reversed, I may feel a heaviness and lack of action about the energies of the day, or I may be temped to avoid that sudden burst of energy. But the card is present, so there are benefits to be found in this burst!

My 6-digit date number is 4, the number of stability and depth.

My horoscopes: “You might spend hours on the phone today, Sagittarius, possibly discussing opportunities to perform services for others. Your mental and physical energy should be high. You will want to use as many tools as you can to get whatever information you need, including books and the Internet. You're going to want to get out and walk or work out, as you will need to work off excess energy.”

And: “As per usual, you've got something to say, and thanks to a bold pair of planets the universe has instructed to help you operate your mouth, you're ready, willing and able. Do yourself a favor: Before you actually start going on at length, though, think about your audience. Are they truly receptive? Do you really care? Most importantly, do you really want to alienate everyone you come into contact with now? Why not settle for just speaking your mind to the person who's earned it?”

And: “Success and good fortune might be in the wind for you today. Whatever it is, it will probably have you feeling especially elated and satisfied with your accomplishments. You'll want to tell everyone, but this could prove frustrating as some of the people you want to tell the most might not be reachable today. Hold off on spreading the word until you can inform those closest to you. You'll need and want their support.”

Well, I thought I would be able to postpone my attempts at resolving in my own mind the task gifted to me by my Patroness, but that is not to be. Danu came to me this morning, and told me that She wants me to attempt to keep a small tendril of my awareness on the Well as much as possible throughout the day. I agreed to attempt this, and I also told Danu that I was willing to do whatever She wanted me to do as far as the Well was concerned, and that I fully accepted my responsibilities in that regard. But I reminder her that I am not perfect, and will probably be making mistakes. She smiled, and responded by saying, “My Daughter, I do not seek perfection in this task. Any mistakes made will be beneficial to you in the long run, as well as beneficial to those who look to you for guidance. As always, I am with you, should you need Me. But this gift, and this task, are now yours; know in your mind and your heart that I would not charge you with this task if you were not ready for it.”

Needless to say, I have been thinking about this ever since. I have come to realize that the one who controls access to the sacred energies is not supposed to be **limiting** that access, but rather **enabling** it. Yes, there will be some policing involved in this task, but mostly I will be opening the way to the Well, not guarding the entrance. It looks like Archangel Uriel was correct, and I have become the Seven of Wands!!

If that was not enough validation, Carolyn sent me an email this morning that directly relates to this new task. Below is the information she sent me. How is that for synchronicity??!!

The Twelve Sacred Energies of the Inca Cross

The Sacred Energy of Unconditional Love: Love is the source of all creation. It is the consciousness that actually forms the created universe, dimensions, and worlds that we live within. When we are in a state of unconditional love we are in a higher level of consciousness. Only higher vibration emotions such as, love, hope, joy, and power, can exists when you have accepted the Sacred Energy of Unconditional Love.

The Sacred Energy of Integrity: Integrity is the energy that allows you stand in your power and brings into creation unlimited possibilities. This Energy of Integrity will allow you to remember your original pure creation. This Energy is not meant for anyone other than you and will allow you to comprehend real truths about your own self worth.

The Sacred Energy of Power of Being: The Energy of the Power of Being will allow you to remember your own source of energy. Each person is unique and has been created in his/her own source of energy. Through our uniqueness we make a stand for others within our communities to create a whole and more powerful community of higher consciousness. When we do this, each of us within these communities will feel love, nurturing, kindness, and many more energies in creating a beautiful world for the past, present, and future.

The Sacred Energy of Acceptance: Accepting is the Energy that allows you to be yourself for your highest consciousness. Through acceptance you will be able to like yourself; which will open a path to the Universe and Heavenly Father to allow you to manifest what you desire.

The Sacred Energy of Creation: By accepting the energies above you can ascend to a higher consciousness and the universe will align to support the creations that you seek to manifest. With the energies that allow you to reach a higher vibration and the alignment of the universe with your higher good, the manifestation of your greatest joys becomes possible.

The Sacred Energy of Pure Power: The Energy of Pure Power brings to you the power of creation as it was meant to be created in our physical body. This energy will allow you to make the best decisions possible with your greatest consciousness in mind, and will drive you to do what is best for higher consciousness

The Sacred Energy of Direction: This Energy will allow you to see where you have been in the past, where you are in the present, and where you will journey in the future. With the goals of what you would like to manifest presently in mind, you will move into the future with these manifestations becoming reality. In order to continue to reach a higher vibration you must clear the blocks and limiting beliefs from yourself and your ancestors while moving into the future.

The Sacred Energy of Protection: The Energy of Protection will protect you from outside contamination from sources of lower vibration by holding each being accountable for their actions. The Energy of Protection is needed so that you may continue on the path of your sole purpose without any misdirection.

The Sacred Energy of Hope: Hope allows the energy of creation to manifest your desires through your sole purpose. The Energy of Hope will establish boundaries, and guidance to insure that the path of your sole purpose is obtainable and clear of blocks when the time is needed. Without Hope there will be no structure to the path of your sole purpose and the time to continue your journey will never be in the present.

The Sacred Energy of Human Value: will turn the knowledge of information into knowledge of understanding when learning what it means to be human. This Energy of Human Value brings to light the understanding of the importance of the body, mind, and soul.

The Sacred Energy of Abundance: is a state of heart and mind. If you maintain balance between mind and heart then abundance will be created within your life. This is the state of being happy with whom you are and the life you have manifested; Abundance is not a reflection of the ideals of society, and is unique from person to person.

The Sacred Energy of Moving Forward and Focusing on the Future: This is the energy that will help you fulfill and complete contracts in the past that have begun, but not finished. This is necessary so you can create in the present and future new manifestations that will help you reach the highest vibration.


Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Knight of Wands reversed/Six of Swords. The Knight of Wands (cusp of Scorpio, “I desire,” intense, controlling, deep, obsessive, and Sagittarius, “I seek,” philosophic, fun-loving, blundering) is a carefree inventor who loves to try new ideas; his power lies in action, but that power usually needs guidance or fuel from somewhere else, for he is too busy implementing to either check his course or his fuel tank. He is a revolutionary adventurer but he has trouble sticking to things all the way to the end. Because this card is reversed, today I need to be careful about carrying these concepts to extreme, for too much enthusiasm can be damaging, but so can too little. The Six of Swords (Mercury, reason, intelligence, education, communication, in Aquarius, “I know,” friendships, the group, cause oriented) is a very welcome card for me today, for it tells of the return of mental clarity and the ability to move away from whatever has been holding me back of late so I can continue forward. However, there is a lesson to be learned from the traditional image of this card: the swords that are being brought forward into the new day are in a somewhat passive position, being brought along and ready in case they are needed, but not steering the boat.

My Thoth card is the Knight of Disks reversed. The Knight (King) of Disks (the cusp of Aries, “I want,” action oriented, pioneering, assertive, competitive, and Taurus, “I have,” sensual, cautious, stubborn, physically focused) is the person who organizes, enables and brings to completion all projects within the material world. Crowley describes him as being complex and well-knit, but also containing the danger of focusing so much on the tasks at hand that he becomes distracted from his connection to the Earth and no longer includes Earthly energies within his efforts.

My Legacy card is the Queen of Cups, flavored by the Page of Coins. Well, today must be Court Cards day! The Queen of Cups (cusp of Gemini, “I think,” curious, sociable, dual, and Cancer, “I feel,” sensitive, tenacious, nurturing, moody) is Water of Water, and thus is quite deeply connected to her feelings and her Inner Voice. She feels compassion for all, is able to hear and understand what others are saying and feeling, and is a natural healer. All she has to do is touch someone or engage in a brief conversation with them, and they feel healed and more serene because of contact with her. The Page of Coins (Aries, “I want,” assertive, action oriented, Taurus, “I have,” sensual, cautious, stubborn, and Gemini, “I think,” curious, sociable, dual) is also a listener, and this Page listens to both sides of an argument because he is also a student, and is eager to learn. He watches his world with curiosity and wants to learn how everything works. Because this Page corresponds to Earth, he is practical and cautious, but because he also brings a youth’s enthusiasm to learn into the picture, he is the least cautious of the Coins Court family.

My 6-digit date number is 3 the number of new creation from balance and polarity.

My horoscopes: “Work that you're doing either at home or on your home is likely to go well today and bring you the results you're hoping for, Sagittarius. Members of your household might want to pitch in and help. You will probably spend most of your time inside, but you may also have to spend some time out gathering supplies and materials that you may need.

And: “The universe is perfectly primed to inspire everyone to be excessive, extravagant and out of control -- to really go overboard, in any and all departments. Of course, since that's how you tend to be -- oh, let's say 'occasionally' -- well, won't it be fun to finally have the rest of the world on the same page? You'll actually be able to suggest something risky without worrying about getting the old 'tsk tsk,' accompanied by that oh so familiar disapproving frown.

And: “An opportunity to travel, perhaps in the company of friends or colleagues, could come your way today. This might involve education in some way. What you learn on this trip is likely to alter your life in some way, as it could in come way open new doors for you. New friends and valuable contacts could also come on the scene. Don't hesitate - go for it! Another opportunity like this might not come around for a while.

I had a truly mystical driving experience from Cape May to North Jersey today. We had an unusually warm day in Cape May (54 degrees!!); it was overcast and damp, and lovely clouds of fog were rising up over the snow fields and the channels of the salt marshes. The ocean water is still a bit chilly, after all. The result was an insulating blanket of fog, sometimes almost totally blocking out the sides of the road. I drove up the Parkway, sipping my Komodo Dragon coffee (**waves to E, her favorite barrista**), within a sanctuary of Fog.

This fog is fitting for me today. I have been through my own min-Fog this weekend, probably due mostly to this darned cold that has had me so dragged out for a week now. I lost my voice this weekend, after several days of lethargy and a runny nose. I just did not want to do anything but sit there, staring at a blank wall. Now, I enjoy relaxing quite a bit and never give up an opportunity to sleep late or sit for a while with a good book, but I also have moments during each day when I feel positively alive with the electricity of potential that is a part of living. I had not had any moments of feeling alive for days.

Last night, as I sat watching a bit of a Stephen Hawkings program on the Universe, I could not stay awake, and I felt pretty. I still mostly had no voice, I still had mostly no energy; once again, I could not bring myself to post on my blog; once again, I did not take care of my Sacred Mists responsibilities; once again, I did not do much around the house besides laundry (and believe me, wallboard and spackle dust is coating every cobweb, making it look like the house is festooned with spun sugar). I actually questioned myself, questioned the validity of these things that I just could not raise enough energy to accomplish. Maybe my life within the Sacred Mists Community was losing its bloom. Maybe this entire woo-woo thing was losing its bloom. After all, if it was important, if it was something that I was meant to manifest, wouldn't I be able to find the energy and the clarity of mind to get things done, even if I was sick? Yes, me . . . Miss Woo-Woo Believer/Teacher/Encourager," doubting my own Path, doubting its validity. Once again. The difference this time was that I was not doubting the validity of the Path itself, but rather I was wondering whether or not I should be following it.

I was so tired and limp last night that I could not even bring myself to be horrified by the thoughts running around my head. I actually had my first good night’s sleep in several days, and woke up a different woman. I finally felt energy, I finally felt clarity, I finally felt the urge to get things done. I guess it took wallowing a bit in the dark, damp, trash strewn place that is my “pity potty” to bring me back to my senses. Thankfully, the fire has not gone out in my soul, and I am ready, willing and able to get back to work.

And this is good. I owe Hecate a ritual, and since the waning moon is near, I will plan on doing this soon. Plus, my Patroness, Danu, visited me today as I drove through the Fog (both literally and figuratively). She brought me once again to Her Well, and explained me that this Well is one source of Her power on and in our world, a direct connection to Her sacred energies. No wonder I felt so connected to the Divine when I spent time there! Danu explained to me that since I had entered the world beyond the Well that one time, things have been changing within me. Changing mainly within my energy body and my aura, but since they are both connected to my physical body, my mental body and my emotional body, those changes will have a long term and far reaching effect on me. **smile** More fun to look forward to.

Then Danu really surprised me! She told me that She was gifting me with this Well. No longer was it Danu’s Well, now it was Raushanna’s Well. Needless to say, Danu quickly qualified this gift. She explained that it was the access to the sacred energies that emanate from the Well that She was giving me, and not the content of the Well, which belonged to everyone and every thing. No one or no thing could use this particular Well without my go-ahead, without my permission. I realized that what She was giving me was similar to Reiki, for the Reiki energy does not belong to me and does not originate from me; I am merely the conduit which provides the Reiki energy to a recipient. I also realized that this gift came with some heavy responsibility. I now need to keep a small part of myself at the Well at all times, not to guard so much as to grant access when needed.

As I type this, I am suddenly realizing the heavy duty symbolism attached to Danu’s gift. Shit. She is making me something that I never wanted to be. Well, not making me, as in forcing me. I know that I can always say no. But Danu is placing this gift directly in my Path, so that I need to either accept it and own it, or I need to make a huuugggge detour around it. What is the symbolism that scares me so much, you ask? Simple; Danu is asking me to be the person who leads Seekers to this Sacred Well, and show them how to access Its benefits and powers.

Now, here’s the thing. I never wanted to be anything but a Seeker. I don’t feel that my initiation into the Sacred Mists Coven counters this desire, because in the end even a Covener needs to do much of the work entailed in coming to understand the Mysteries in a solitary manner. We just get to do that difficult solitary work with the support of our fellow Coveners. But this gift reeks of a particular role, that “High Priestess” word that I don’t like to associate with, because of the baggage that comes along with it. Tricky Danu.

Mind you, I am deep into my Third Degree Training at Sacred Mists, and I am truly loving the growth that is happening for me in that Training. But I never aspired to be more than an Elder with my Coven. Sheesh, am I actually training to lead a group of my own??

Maybe that Fog is not so bad, after all. Only kidding, My Lady Danu! I will go wherever You think I need to go, but I hope You don’t mind if I wait for further confirmation on this one.

I think I will go back to something safe for a bit, like learning about Pathworking. I need to think about this revelation for a while.


Friday, January 14, 2011

Eight of Wands/Six of Swords: the Eight of Wands (Mercury, reason, intelligence, education, skill, communication, in Sagittarius, “I seek,” philosophic, fun-loving, adventurous, blundering) is one of the few Minor Arcana cards without people found in the image. The Eight of Wands is very similar to the Ace of Wands in that it is very Fiery in nature (hot/separates and dry/shapes, and spontaneous, impulsive and energetic change), however the Eight is a card of action. It tells of a sudden release of energy that clears the air, or the receipt of some new or exciting prospects that distract from those that are not serving the situation, and it tells me that I have the ability to get things cleared, quickly. The Six of Swords (Mercury, reason, intelligence, education, communication, in Aquarius, “I know,” friendships, the group, cause oriented), tells of recovery, of the onset of transition, and of the continuation of a journey. These two cards are supporting each other, and they are telling me that the time has come to chart a new course, and to boldly go where no man has gone before.

My Thoth card is the Prince of Cups reversed. The Prince of Cups (cusp of Aquarius, “I know,” friendships, the group, cause-oriented, and Pisces, “I believe,” feelings, duality, suffering, soul growth) in an upright position tells of a person who focuses intensely on feelings and emotions and the Inner Voice, which can either be a good thing, or it can tell of a time of imbalance with too much emotion and not enough grounding. When I see reversed Knights, I usually see them as presenting the negative possibilities associated with a pure application of the correspondences of the suit, so I need to be sure to focus on balance today as far as my emotions are concerned, and I need to strive to be realistic. Crowley sees this card in an upright position as showing a person who has the ability to be amenable but who has a secret, and sometimes selfish, agenda, so from Uncle Al’s viewpoint, this card might be better reversed. However, sometimes things need to be kept secret for a bit.

My Legacy card is the Page of Wands reversed, flavored by The Hanging Man reversed. The Page of Wands (Cancer, “I feel,” sensitive, tenacious, nurturing, moody; Leo, “I am,” passionate, dramatic noble egotistical; and Virgo, “I serve,” practical, analytical, work and service oriented) uses assertion and action in order to feed his need for adventure and excitement. He has a childlike optimism, and since the suit of Wands is associated with Fire and the Will, he can often manifest that optimism into reality, mainly because in his childlike enthusiasm he refuses to see failure. Because he is reversed, I may feel a bit frustrated today if things don’t appear to be going as I want them to. I need to be careful that I am not reduced to tantrums. The Hanging Man is a peculiar and powerful card, whether upright or reversed. It corresponds with Water (cold/binds and wet/adapts; emotional and imaginative energy which attempts to prevent changes), Neptune (inspiration, spirituality, magick, altered states), Mem (water, stability and balance, the reflective quality of thought), and the Path between Hod (which provides analysis and communication) and Geburah (the place where forms and structures are challenged or affirmed), and whether upright or reversed, it tells of the benefits to be had from altering my perceptions. This card is supporting the Page of Wands reversed, and is reminding me to stop struggling against the tides for this is a total waste of energy. I need to think out of the box in order to reaccess the Fire of this Page.

My 6-digit date number is 8, the number that represents an active, conscious and focused response to the beginning of degeneration that is the number 7, in an attempt to repair and reproduce harmony.

My horoscopes: “Strained nerves and trepidation about unpleasant tasks could have you on edge and likely to take your stress out on those closest to you. Try to avoid this, Sagittarius. Go for a walk. Release your stress through exercise or writing. Communicate your feelings to friends and assure them you aren't upset with them. In this way, you will get through the day with little damage.”

And: “You don't just survive by helping out the people around you, you thrive on it. There's nothing you like better than knowing that you've been able to help somebody out with something they've gotten stuck with, whether it's their career or their cutie pie. What can you say? You're a nice person. And you get something out of the deal too -- the sense of a job well done.”

And: “Welcome to another great day. The energy from the day's aspects is positive and encouraging when it comes to communication and interaction with others. So why not take advantage of this? Get together with friends and family to visit and enjoy yourself. Consider inviting people over for a game or dinner. Even a potluck can be a lot of fun. You work hard all the time, so play hard today!”

Well, a nasty head cold has slowed me down this week, immensely. I am finally feeling somewhat back to normal, thanks in part to my energy work, and my new piece of azurite, as well as some coral from the Dominican Republic, both which I am using as a part of my healing. But the week has not been without events. I received our business cards, and this means that Helen and I can go out and sell our product. I will be offering Vedic Thai-Yoga Bodywork through Elena of Off the Beaten Path, and there are two other possibilities so far in Northern New Jersey where I will be presenting myself and my services.

I will be alone in Cape May for the first part of this weekend, but Bob will be coming down either late Saturday night or some time on Sunday. The stair people are coming early Monday morning to fix a slight miscalculation on the stairs into our bedroom, and thus, the floor people will be able to come on Tuesday and install our hardwood floors. This means that next weekend, we can begin to put the furniture back! Finally, our Blue Moon House will be back to normal for a while.

Last night we had a Pagan Brain Trust meeting, our first with our newest member, Phillie. Awesome!! I am truly amazed at the incredible discussions we all have, and how much each of us contributes to the increased knowledge, wisdom and validation brought to us all, both individually and as a group.

I am reading a new book, part of the recommended reading list for the Third Degree Lesson I am working on within my Third Degree training at Sacred Mists, When I see the Wild God: Encountering Urban Celtic Witchcraft, by Ly De Angeles. I only just began reading the book last night, before leaving for Wayne, and already I read a few things that reached out and grabbed my mind, so I bought the book with me, to read a few passages to the others. As an aside, I read the reviews for the book on Amazon before purchasing it, and they were mixed. I feared that the book might be more of a beginner’s book, but thankfully, I believe the negative reviews were based on the fact that the book presents concepts which would be meaningless to those who were not aware of the Mysteries of Wicca; if the reviewer was not initiated into those Mysteries, the content of the book would seem without depth. I connected immediately to what the author was saying in the first few chapters.

After hearing the passages, Phil brought up an interesting concept. He spoke for a bit about his feeling that in the past, the gay/queer community would have had a very valid role to play for primitive man. Actually, he made a valid point, for besides sex with women in order to have children, necessary for propagation of our species, there really was no difference between what a gay man could contribute to the tribe and what a straight man could contribute to a tribe. Homosexuals would have been considered dual personas, and thus valuable aids for bridging the worlds. Primitive man perceived the world as being dual, both physical and astral or energetic in nature, and someone whose persona contained bits of both masculine and feminine energy would have been expected to have a corresponding ability to bridge both the physical and non-physical world. After all, the physical world corresponds with male energy and the non-physical world corresponds with female energy, both of which would have been apparent within homosexuals.

In my opinion, as man gradually developed a “civilized” lifestyle, it was not homosexuality itself that became taboo, but the concept of a man spilling his seed into an unfertile vessel. This would mean that masturbation would be seen as an equal taboo as gay sex because the man’s seed would be spilled in a manner that could not bring conception.

If we take away that major taboo related to the need for an increase in population (which no longer is valid, obviously), then there really is no reason at all for two men who love each other, or two women who love each other, to **not** be paired in a committed relationship if they so choose, the same way that a heterosexual couple chooses to enter into a committed relationship. Wicca sees all love, sex and pleasure to be sacred; this means that while propagation is important, for Wiccans, it is not the only reason to have sex or feel pleasure.

As I was driving home (**smile** as is usual for me), I revisited the topics of conversation that evening, including this one. I realized once again, from a different perspective, that everyone and every thing has value. Each life form, as well as each building block to life, serves a purpose within the eternal cycles of our Universe. And yet, despite this connection, mankind has the hubris to make this world about him and him alone. We may be supreme in some ways, basically due to our ability to consciously reason, but we have divorced ourselves from the world that nurtures us and supports our very life; we no longer connect with the cycles around us, the very cycles that feed us and keep us healthy, and we deny the validity of the non-physical realms, realms which are equally important for health and harmony as the physical realms. For a moment, I was amazed that Deity responds to our requests for contact at all! How frustrating it must be to maintain the sense of wonder and magick regarding the workings of our Universe to an audience that is indifferent at best, and even hostile to this attempt.

We each have a purpose, an individual purpose and a purpose as a species. Both our individual purpose and our purpose as a species brings consequences as we manifest that purpose; some consequences are small and easily extinguished, but none of us will be around long enough to really be able to say that the consequences of seemingly minor decisions will have no impact.

As I drove on Route 80, I looked at the starry sky, and at the lace of the silhouettes of the winter trees, each as unique as a snowflake. Once again, I became aware of the presence of the Divine all around me, and I realized that all physical manifestations, everything within our Universe, can be considered in part as an image of Deity. Look at it this way: everything in the physical world is built from energy. Deity is also built from energy, the purest energy containing the highest, warmest vibration, more pure and warm and high than anything we can perceive through our physical senses. This is why we need to communicate with Deity within the non-physical or astral realms.

Now, as the vibratory levels of energy cool and slow down, that energy becomes more physical; it “falls” into the physical world (where energy vibrates slower and cooler than within the astral realms, and we end up with air and water and earth and fire, and all of their effects. However, because the building blocks of the physical world consist of the same energy component as those of the astral realms, and of Deity Herself/Himself/Itself, the manifestation across the spectrum will be of the “as above, so below” nature. Manifestation occurs in the physical world and must take place according to the laws of the physical world (LOL, the only world that many can perceive), but that manifestation also takes place in accordance with its ingredients, according to the “recipe” or “floor plan” (for the lack of a better term) that is Deity.

This means that everything is sacred, because every thing, every effect, every life form, exists not only because of the common ingredient of Divine energy, but exists in a similar fashion as (read “in the image of”) Deity. Deity is all around me, and infuses my physical, emotional, mental and spiritual self, and this means that every act of my day is sacred.

Deity does not necessarily want to be worshipped by us, worshipped in a manner that causes us to see Deity as transcendent; Goddess and God are programmed to respond to interactions with us, and just as having a strong and ethical spiritual belief brings harmony to each of us, the energy we emit during those marvelous Aha! Moments and those elusive glimpses of the Machinery of the Universe are food for the Gods. Each entity upon and within our Universe has the potential to offer this sustenance to Deity, from pond scum to Stephen Hawkings, each in its own way.

The Gods must have been hungry of late, for mankind has focused upon himself and his technology for some time. Perhaps our purpose, we who have become enlightened and aware, is to bring the first drop of water that will turn into a flash flood of sustenance once a tipping point is reached.

This makes the work of the Pagan Brain Trust, and Lumina Mystica, and Sacred Mists sacred, as sacred as any coven or worship group or spiritual tradition or religion. It means that we each have a responsibility to manifest our individual traits (in an ethical way, of course), for these traits are gifted by Deity.

Blessed be!!


Saturday, January 8, 2011

Death/The Hermit reversed. The Death card corresponds with Water (cold/binds and wet/adapts, and sensitive, imaginative energy that strives to stay the same or take the same course), Scorpio, Nun (fish head; liberation), and the Path between Tiphareth (the hub of the creation process where energies harmonize and focus to illuminate and clarify) and Netzach (the stimulating factors of emotion and inspiration), and tells of transformation or change, both voluntary and involuntary. Most of the time, this change is connected in some way to existing circumstances, and can seem to be brought about by destruction or endings, but the destruction or endings are not what they seem. Death is about leaving things behind, or alchemic putrefaction; the decomposed remnants of past events or effects act as wonderful fertilizer for the creation to come. The Hermit in an upright position corresponds with Earth (cold/binds and dry/shapes, and material, practical and stable energy that is slow to change), Virgo (“I serve,” practical, analytical, work and service oriented, orderly), Yod (open hand, touch), and the Path between Tiphareth (the hub of the creation process where energies harmonize and focus to illuminate and clarify) and Chesed (the place where forms and structure are stabilized and nurtured), and points to hidden knowledge, attained through seclusion and tough introspection. The card is reversed, so I am being told that at least for today, I should allow myself to connect with the outer world and the ecstasies available there. The Hermit has been showing up in a reversed position quite a bit for me lately; I need to listen to the message of this card, and I need to remember that while solitude does prevent the interference of distractions, sometimes interactions with others can bring balance and an objective input of information.

My Thoth card is the Four of Swords. “Truce” is Uncle Al’s keyword for the Four of Swords (Jupiter, expansiveness and growth, justice, fortune, in Libra, “We are,” partnerships, balance, cooperation), and the card tells of the need of some time of rest and recuperation, usually to be brought about by a time of truce or pause. This card is similar to some extent as The Hanging Man, but since it is of the suit of Swords, this pause is not necessarily about changing perception, but rather it indicates a pause that helps me to prepare to re-engage. It can also represent the balance of power that acts as a deterrent to attack.

My Legacy card is the King of Swords reversed, flavored by the Queen of Coins reversed. The King of Swords (cusp of Capricorn, “I build,” ambitious, cautious, cunning, authoritative, and Aquarius, “I know,” friendships, the group, cause-oriented, aloof) in an upright position is the expert at being impartial, precise and logical. His Queen understands people, but he understands things, as well as knowledge. Because he is reversed, he is reminding me that while knowledge is power, my instincts and feelings just might be worth listening to, even for the exclusively logical expert energies of the King of Swords. Besides listening to all messages, not only those from a logical or scientifically provable source, I need to also be less critical of myself. The Queen of Coins (cusp of Sagittarius, “I seek,” philosophic, fun-loving, blundering, and Capricorn, “I build,” ambition, caution, cunning, authoritative) in an upright position is very good at sustaining the physical world, keeping things dry and cozy and safe and orderly; her main weakness is that her focus on protecting and maintaining can sometimes cross the line into obsession. Because she is reversed, that tendency to obsess is holding me back, and I need to remind myself that while creating a strong and stable foundation is a good thing, sooner or later (probably sooner!) I will need to move away from the predictable and venture into the unknown. And I can’t allow her to do the inventory, or we won’t get rid of anything!

My 6-digit date number is 11 (Archangel Uriel), which reduces to the number 2, the number of polarity and balance.

My horoscopes: “Today marks the beginning of a new cycle for you, Sagittarius. Collect and consolidate your recent ideas and focus them outwardly. The time is right for you to act. Improve your surroundings and adjust your bed so that it faces east/west. (A north/south placement aligns you with Earth's magnetic field and causes you to lose energy at night.) Drink plenty of water to keep your mind clear.”

And: “Do you want to make your mark on the world? Of course you do. Today you just may get your chance to make something that no one can ignore, so be ready to act on a moment's notice. Seek out challenging situations, and you'll thrive. You have only tapped into a small percentage of what you're capable of right now ... if you've been waiting for the perfect time to make a major move, this is the day to do it. People will notice you in a whole new way.”

And: “Group activities or social events in your near neighborhood could put you in touch with new and exciting people who could eventually become friends, Nancy. Shared goals and interests could give rise to plans for ambitious projects. Whatever enterprises you start today are likely to prove successful if everyone involved pitches in. In the evening: Arrange for a quiet tête-à-tête with your romantic partner. Enjoy your day!”

I have had a lovely, quiet, productive day here at Cape May. I woke up to snow, fat white flakes floating downward, with no wind to bite. The world was silent, a silence that is unique to that time during which snow is falling, and the fireplace has added to the cozy isolation.

We had a great SMPDA Meeting this afternoon, with a productive Divination Department Meeting following. I am grateful to my Co-Facilitator and Co-Director; they both add their very useful talents and abilities to our efforts.

I have looked at my next Third Degree Lesson, and it is going to be awesome! I just love the way these homework assignments ask me to validate my own experiences, and to lace those experiences together with the knowledge I have gained through my Degree Training at Sacred Mists, through the exercises of the lessons, as well as my own personal studies and practices. I am pleased with how much I really have learned over the past eight plus years that I have been practicing Wicca.

The most wonderful yet incredibly elusive thing about Wicca is its ability to be a catalyst for inner transformation. The Mysteries of Wicca are difficult to understand, and it takes courage to walk blindly into the unknown that is found in the dark corners of my psyche, but shedding light into the darkness is leading to some wonderful self-understanding. I am learning to not fear the unknown, to trust in my own abilities and skills and yes, even talents. I am learning that I am a good teacher, and a good leader, as well as an enthusiastic student. And I am connecting in an ever-deepening way with my world and my Gods.

More and more, I am convinced that the time has come for me to learn how to be The Magician. I need to create a bridge that will connect all the inner work I have done over the past year as The High Priestess to the outer world, in order to assist others as they learn of their Craft, but also in order to manifest what I have learned into my own physical environment. I don’t only want to know what a Witch is, I want to be one. To live my Craft. Totally and completely. In doing so, I know that I can, by example, be a catalyst for Balance to others. And when I say “by example,” I do not mean that I am so wonderful that I need to be imitated; not at all. What I mean here is that if I can talk the talk and walk the walk, and in doing so, become a happier and healthier person, then others will see that their own efforts are not wasted. They can, in their own unique way, become happier and healthier.

When I first dedicated myself to Wicca, there were those who I chose to use as examples. This did not mean that I imitated their methods completely; rather, it meant (and still means) that I look to them as encouragement to continue my own explorations, encouragement to make my life, my way of living, and my methods for exploring the Mysteries, my own. To my surprise, I now feel the need to pay those gifts forward. I did not expect this to happen.

It is time to begin working with the Paths of the Tree of Life. First, a bit of general information about Pathworking.

It is suggested that a study of the Paths and Pathworking begin on the 32nd path that links the Sephiroth of Malkuth to Yesod (Earth to Foundation), as these are the ones that link closest to the material world. As work is done on the Tree of Life we “climb” higher and higher, and the energy encountered is believed to become more spiritual, until the Supernal Triangle is encountered. The Supernal Triangle is where the aspects of Deity and the sacred energies are their purest, and are believed to transcend thought.

The Paths of the sephiroths of the Tree of Life are supported by both the Major Aracana of the Tarot (*grin* which is why I am here, standing at the gateway of the “temple” of Pathworking) and the Hebrew alphabet. Each Path explores different parts of the psyche, our connection to and understanding of the koshas of living (and pardon my mix of metaphors and spiritual traditions here, but the koshas resonate for me), as well as our connection to and understanding of Deity.

Paths 32 through 30 are seen as steps in initiation.

Paths 29 through 27 explore personality.

Paths 26 through 24 explore the differences between materialism and spirituality.

Paths 23 through 19 explore the qualities of higher spirituality.

Paths 18 through 14 view ways to transition to the Supernal Triangle, crossing the Abyss.

Paths 13 through 11 consist of the highest and most abstract qualities of Deity.

Just for my own ease of access to info regarding the koshas, the five sheaths, from gross to fine, are:

Annamaya kosha: food-apparent-sheath (physical body): Living through the Annamaya kosha only causes man to identify himself only with his skin, flesh, fat, bones, and filth, while the man of discrimination knows his own self, the only reality that there is, as distinct from the body.

Pranamaya kosha, air-apparent-sheath (prana, vital force of life): Pranamaya kosha connects and holds together the body and the mind. As long as prana exists in the organism, life continues; the one physical manifestation of the Pranamaya kosha is the breath.

Manomaya kosha, mind-stuff-apparent-sheath (person-hood, personality, mind): Manomaya kosha represents the personality, the diversity of “I” and “mine.” It represents the mind and the sense of self; interestingly enough, our bondages are usually caused or created by the mind, but so, too, is real liberation.

Vijnanamaya kosha, wisdom-apparent-sheath (Vijnana) (Will, intellect, perception, the facility which discriminates; connected to five sense organs): Vijnanamaya kosha is connected to the Will, but also to the ability to analyze and discriminate. This is the kosha that holds the potential to bring transmigration of the soul (Buddhists actually don't see the life force as the soul, but rather as a stream of consciousness that links life with life and allows one to “become again.”

Anandamaya kosha, bliss-apparent-sheath (Ananda) (the causal body which stands between the finite world and the self, the innermost kosha): Anandamaya kosha is composed of ananda, or bliss. To me, this kosha is the spark of the Divine that is in us all, and our connection to the Divine. The Anandamaya kosha only partially manifests during a waking state, and normally has its fullest manifestation during deep sleep. Ananda was first cousin of Buddha, and after many years he became the personal attendant to Buddha, accompanying him on most of his travels. Ananda is seen as being kind, unselfish, well liked, and thoughtful of others.

I have a feeling that my striving to understand Pathworking and the Tree of Life is going to have some amazing consequences!