Thursday, June 30, 2011

Three of Cups/Queen of Swords reversed. The Three of Cups (Mercury, reason, intelligence, orderliness, communication, in Cancer, “I feel,” sensitive tenacious, nurturing, moody) tells of the possibility of experiencing emotional abundance, emotional connections to others (mainly due to things in common), and emotional support as a part of the day. Isn’t this a great feeling??!! The most important message this card brings is that if I share the love and joy, it will grow. The Queen of Swords (cusp of Virgo, “I serve,” practical, sensible, work and service oriented, and Libra, “We are,” partnerships, balance, cooperation, grace) represents a disciplinarian, and a thinker, and an experienced person who is not afraid to laugh at herself. This Queen may appear to be a bit aloof, but that is because she tells it like it is, and while she is straight-forward and honest, her sharp wit comes in handy sometimes. Paired with the Three of Cups, her humor and sense of camaraderie will soften the bluntness a bit.

My Thoth card is The Hanged Man. The Hanged Man corresponds with Water (cold/binds and wet/adapts, and emotional, sensitive and imaginative energy that tends to move deep, and attempts to take the same path as in the past), Neptune (inspiration, spirituality, magick, enchantment, dreams, altered states), and the Hebrew letter Mem (water, stability and balance, the reflective quality of thought). Uncle Al sees The Hanged Man as the “redeemer” who brings redemption not because the task is forced on him, but because he willingly offers himself as the sacrifice or as the necessary energy exchange. The redemption offered by the Thoth Hanged Man is usually on a spiritual or emotional level; this redemption is often presented to us in the guise of failure or loss. “No pain, no gain” just might be his advice of the day, and I need to remember that when the beam of light shines down from Kether to Malkuth, it might hurt my eyes, but that temporary blindness will allow my other senses to come into play.

My Legacy card is the Page of Cups flavored by The Emperor reversed. The Page of Cups corresponds to Libra (“we are,” partnerships, balance, cooperation), Scorpio (“I desire,” intensity compulsion, mystery) and Sagittarius (“I seek,” philosophic, adventurous, blundering), and corresponds to my connections to others and to my own inner self. This Page is in touch with his own feelings, and while this means his moodiness might be intense, so is his ability to feel joy and to open his heart to everyone without judgment. My Page of Cups is being flavored by The Emperor reversed, which actually supports The Hanging Man above. 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) in an upright represents the power of the mind and of intentions to shape the world. The Emperor is about taking responsibility, about personal power and about control over himself and/or others; there is a bit of ambition mixed in as well. Because he is reversed, he is actually encouraging the Page of Cups to bring emotions and feelings into everyone’s day, even those who tend to be more rigid and orderly!

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

My horoscopes: “It may be hard for you to make a decision about anything today, Sagittarius. Things may seem wishy-washy and unclear. Don't worry about it. There is plenty of air to fuel your fire. Be aware that people may pop up from the past and unexpected events may disrupt the flow throughout the day. Best-laid plans are apt to be broken. Don't sweat it. Just go with the flow.”

And: “There's a time to move forward, and a time to stay back and just watch the world go by -- today is a day when you should stay back. Sure, you might want to get going on a fun, new project or play with a fun, new toy, but you should think twice about it. Patience will come to you right when you're at the end of your rope, so don't worry about getting caught off guard. Just wait for everyone else to take their turn, and then you'll know how to take yours.”

Technical: “It's a good time to focus on work issues that have been troubling you for some time. Your mental energy is powerful, and you should be able to come up with new solutions and unique alternatives to deal with the circumstances at hand.”

My Sun reading: “A sensitive Cancer Moon trines Neptune. You're intuitive to your own and others' needs and can take care of them quickly. The Moon aspects Uranus, Jupiter, and Pluto today, and they translate into fireworks. Let the games begin! Fortunately with Jupiter, your luck holds.”

Still more about the 17th Path. Pairs are not only about connections. Yes, that is the first thing that comes to mind when most people look at The Lovers and think about pairs or duality. But remember, we are looking deeper into this card because it is connected to the 17th Path, one of the bridges over Da’at, and so in order to understand the duality of this Path, we need to also take into consideration the Law of Opposites. Basically, the Law of Opposites states that in order to understand something, you need to understand its opposite. You can’t know light unless you know darkness, which is the absence of light; you can’t know heat unless you know cold, the absence of heat. This ability to **discern** is one of the gifts of the 17th Path.

And so, we cannot know our conscious mind unless we experience our unconscious mind; we cannot know love unless we have experienced isolation and we cannot know pleasure unless we have experienced pain. The duality of the 17th Path and its connection between Beauty and Understanding brings us a glimpse of the Machinery of the Universe. And when we love ourselves and strive to evolve, we not only benefit ourselves but those around us.

In “The Witches Tarot,” Ellen Cannon Reed has this to say about the 17th Path: “Our task in this lifetime may be only to illuminate ourselves, but that is a wonderful and mighty task, for each step we take forward takes the rest of humanity an infinitesimal amount forward.” My Patroness, Danu, has taught me that it is life itself and the living of that life that is the gift of Deity, and I have come to believe that we each have a responsibility to experience everything about life and living that is presented to us, whether pleasant or uncomfortable. Here, then, is a reason why we need to do this.

Reed goes on to say: “Gaining knowledge is a loss of ignorance, and oh, how often we have wished we could return to ignorance! It is in many ways so much easier to not know how much more there is to existence. Learning that other people are real, that they have feelings, is to gain a sense of responsibility, but it is also a loss – for you can no longer give your feelings, your actions, your words, free reign. Learning of the world beyond, the world of spiritual things, is a gain beyond price. Yet, at times I have found myself wishing to be ignorant of it – regretting having learned of its existence, because, having gained purpose and direction, I’ve lost the freedom to let my life go, to float along the river, moving only as fast as the river does. Having found direction and purpose, having gotten a glimpse of what is at the end of the river, I must swim – and not only with the current.” I just went back to read my entry on June 24th regarding the 18th Path; I said something similar there regarding that Path and The Chariot. Here it is again, that acceptance of responsibility.

Will this be the common thread through all the Paths that cross The Abyss? We shall see.


Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Five of Cups/Queen of Swords. 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. The thing to remember about the Five of Cups is that often when we focus on that sludge, we end up missing the good things that are still around, untouched by the muck. The Queen of Swords (cusp of Virgo, “I serve,” practical, sensible, work and service oriented, and Libra, “We are,” partnerships, balance, cooperation, grace) represents a disciplinarian, and a thinker, and so she just might be the one to help me see past the sludge to the good things hiding in plain sight. This Queen may be a bit aloof, but she is the best writer and researcher around. She provides her rulings, suggestions and insights based on her own experiences, and provides justice with honesty and ethics.

My Thoth card is the Princess of Swords reversed. The Princess/Page of Swords (Capricorn, “I build,” ambitious, competent, cautious, cunning, Aquarius, “I know,” friendships, the group, society, cause-oriented, and Pisces, “I believe,” feelings, duality, soul growth, spirituality) brings the message of the Ace of Swords (the potential for challenges which can be solved through the use of the intellect and which can offer opportunities for growth) to the day. This Princess in an upright position imitates her Queen (who happens to be in my card throw for today) but in a less experienced manner. She always asks “why?” and she can be a bit suspicious and argumentative. Because the card is reversed, I may not fall into the trap of only reacting to what is presented to me; that is a good thing.

My Legacy card is the Seven of Wands reversed, flavored by the Nine of Cups. The Seven of Wands (Mars, action, spontaneity, aggression, drive, in Leo, “I am,” passionate, dramatic, natural leader, egotistical, selfish) has a personal significance for me, given to me by Archangel Uriel; for me this card represents the approach of a Threshold, and the need to pass the tests of the Guardian. However, the card is reversed and I am interpreting this card in this position as telling me that I have just passed through a threshold. The Nine of Cups (Jupiter, expansiveness and growth, justice, fortune, in Pisces, “I believe,” feeling, duality, soul growth, spirituality), which is flavoring my Seven of Wands today, validates this interpretation. This Nine is about powerful satisfaction on all levels (emotional, physical and spiritual) and a fulfilling sense of accomplishment. Granted, the happiness and fulfillment associated with this card may be present because I am in the right place at the right time, but I’ll take it, gladly.

My 6-digit date number is 10, the number that represents the completion of a cycle, which can be further reduced to the number 1, new beginnings, potential and position. More validation of my interpretation of the reversed Seven of Wands.

My horoscopes: “You may feel like you're ready to get the party started today, Sagittarius, but for some reason, the people around you aren't exactly following suit. Perhaps you need to slow down and wait for others to catch up. They may end up not coming around at all. If people say they're doing fine, don't necessarily believe them. There's most likely something brewing beneath the surface that needs attention.”

And: “Sometimes when you finish a journey, you arrive at a place that looks very different from what you thought it was going to look like. You might be disappointed, you might be pleasantly surprised; but you should definitely be hopeful that things will get better. You are where you need to be, and if you aren't happy about the accommodations, be patient. Learn to live with it and explore what it offers. This place you are in has much more to offer than you realize.”

Technology: “When it comes to the workplace, you will be dealing with more global issues -- even after you go home. Try not to get in too deeply with the details; however, make sure you take care of the most important stuff first.”

My Sun reading: “This morning's Moon/Saturn trine stimulates the desire to settle matters of importance, search for answers to questions, or overcome obstacles in general. Although Mars and Pluto are dynamic helpers, however, temper the impulse to race to the finish line. You have several days to work things out.”

I am now blogging on Tumblr as well as here on Blogspot. This Blogspot Blog will continue to offer detailed Tarot card interpretations and descriptions of my evolution as a Mystic, Witch and Woman. My Tumblr Blog, also named Dancing Sparkles, will be more light-hearted and fun. The posts will be shorter, and many of them will contain images of cards from the Legacy of the Divine Tarot with explanations, or quick, down-and-dirty readings offered for someone or some thing in the news. Please Follow me there []; my first reading posted on my Tumblr Blog will be a one-card reading for the USA in honor of the 4th of July. Also, as a reminder, if you Follow me on Twitter [@ Dancing_Sparkle] or Like the Dancing Sparkles FaceBook Page (or both!), you will be instantly alerted to any Blog posts I submit. I’ve posted the necessary info above and to the left on this Blog; no more shameless plugs, promise.

More on the 17th Path. This Path connects Beauty with Understanding; thus we can say that the 17th Path bring us an Understanding of Beauty, and it shows us the Beauty of Understanding. Two different experiences.

I think one useful way to understand the difference between the 18th Path (which evolves from Might to Understanding) and the 17th Path (which combines Beauty and Understanding) is to look at the Tarot Major Arcana card associated with the 17th Path, The Lovers.

Yep, everyone shudders with pleasure when they see this Major, but in actuality The Lovers is so much more than the name implies. First of all, this card is connected to a Path which bridges The Abyss, Da’at; that alone should wave a few red flags. Within the Major Arcana, The Lovers can be seen as connected to The Hierophant (which is about the group), and The Devil (which is about bondage, dependencies and addictions). Often, the traditional images of The Hierophant, The Lovers and The Devil have similarities; each often show s two people standing before some figure of authority.

The Lovers corresponds with the element of Air (hot/separates and wet/adapts), which is about quick and animated energies or actions. The element of Air corresponds to the intellect and the workings of the mind, and thus Air is associated with problems or challenges that are difficult to solve and yet offer opportunities for personal growth. The Lovers corresponds to the astrological sign of Gemini (“I think,”), which is dual in nature, and is curious, talkative and sociable. The Hebrew letter associated with this card is Zayin, the dagger or double-edged sword. A bit different from The Chariot of the 18th Path (Water (cold/binds and wet/adapts, and sensitive, emotional and imaginative energy that likes to stay the same or follow the same course), Cancer (“I feel,” sensitive, tenacious, nurturing, moody), Cheth (the fence)), which is about feeling rather than thinking.

Read that again: The Lovers is about thinking, and The Chariot is about feeling. Interesting, yes? I bet you expected the opposite! After all, The Lovers is connected to the archetype of those who feel love!

If we look at all the correspondences associated with The Lovers, we will see a common theme: pairs or duality. The Lovers is about connections for sure, and most of these connections happen through the emotion of love. But this card is about a one-to-one connection, an important one-to-one connection; a connection that you choose to allow, or not allow. Because the choices associated with this card are so important, they can either help us or hinder us; hence the two-edged sword associated with Zayin. We’ve all experienced both the pleasures and the pains associated with loving someone else, and so trusting in the power of love, even though our minds may be giving other advice, is a very brave personal choice. In fact, we really can’t truly open ourselves to love unless we’ve experienced both the joys and the sorrows associated with love. More duality.

And for anyone who believes in the existence of Deity, any love that we humans may feel or experience is an echo or a reflection of the purest and most powerful love offered to us by Deity. Since Tiphareth can bee seen as the Lesser Countenance which reflects or hints at the Greater Countenance of Kether, the 17th Path can be seen to bring us a true understanding of the beauty of love, an emotion which can cure us or kill us, and to show us the Divine nature of the choice to open ourselves to love.


Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Six of Cups/King of Pentacles. The Six of Cups, “Pleasure” (Sun, the inner core of a person or situation in Scorpio, “I desire,” intense, compulsive, deep, obsessive), in an upright position tells of beneficial connections with others; it reminds us that happiness comes to us through continuous effort over time and that if we share our happiness with others, it will come back to us. This is one of my true favorites of the entire deck because it is a card filled with good will, innocence, and a deep connection to the Younger Self. The King of Pentacles (cusp of Aries, “I want,” action oriented, assertive, competitive, and Taurus, “I have,” sensual, stubborn, cautious, physically oriented) is the expert on physical manifestation.  He is very good at managing resources and overseeing growth, and he is very good at being patient, and he is a good pair to the simple joys of the Six of Cups.  His quick reflexes and dependability, and his green thumb regarding physical world matters, are all much appreciated today.

My Thoth card is the Four of Cups reversed.  “Luxury” is Uncle Al’s keyword for the Four of Cups (the Moon, feelings and emotions, illusion, imagination, in Cancer, “I feel,” sensitive, nurturing, tenacious, moody) which on the surface is a card of pleasure and fulfillment.  Combining all that “feeling” that is associated with the Moon and Cancer with the stability of the number 4 could bring dreams and fantasies so lovely that they distract us from what we are supposed to be doing.  Thankfully, the card is reversed.  While I may experience moments of distraction, I should be able to snap myself out of them

My Legacy card is the Two of Cups, flavored by the King of Swords. The Two of Cups (Venus, beauty, allure, relationships, in Cancer, “I feel,” sensitive, family and home oriented, tenacious, moody) is usually about relationships which exist and are strengthened because of commonalities, the most common of which is love.  Whether these are newly formed relationships, or already existing relationships which need healing or a bit of attention, today they will grow and prosper. The King of Swords (cusp of Capricorn, “I build,” ambitious, cautious, cunning, authoritative, and Aquarius, “I know,” friendships, the group, cause-oriented, aloof) tells me how to respond to challenges presented in the physical world.  He tells me that I have the ability to be an impressive leader who is not easily fooled; however, he warns me to allow a bit of compassion to influence me or my temper may gain control.  Since this King is flavoring my Two of Cups today I think I can relax and let my feelings flow; he will watch out for me and keep me from getting into trouble.

My 6-digit date number is 9, the number of completeness (not completion) of manifestation.

My horoscopes: “You may have to make some serious adjustments to your approach today in order to chime in with the energy of the group, Sagittarius. Adopt a more inwardly directed attitude and see what you can learn by tuning into others' subtle messages. The masculine and feminine sides of your nature are working harmoniously. You might find that they're both asking for a quiet night in.”

And: “As you continue on a more passive path right now, you'll begin to notice things you never had the time to notice before. These revelations will teach you something new about someone you've known for a while. The change in this person's behavior has a reasonable explanation, so resist the urge to make any assumptions. Avoid any confrontations at all right now; just keep experiencing everything around you in a new way.”

Some changes; deleting another horoscope source and adding Technical: “Your work will consume your life -- luckily, this type of distraction isn't an issue for you. Your mind is perfectly suited to figuring out the kinds of problems you and your team are facing at the moment. Ask your best minds to sit in on a strategizing session.”

My Sun reading: “The Gemini Moon/Mars conjunction encourages ideas, plans, and changes. Whatever you initiate begins with vigor. You will go onward and upward if you finish what you start. Tonight's Moon/Pluto aspect is a "you're not the boss of me" influence. You need a sentimental, romantic distraction to alter that conversation.”

Some progress.  Twitter is up and active; please follow me at @Dancing-Sparkle.  I will be Tweeting alerts when I post on my Dancing Sparkles Blogs.  Speaking of my Blogs, I spent much of my walk this morning thinking about the Tumblr Blog I just barely created, and I think I know what I want to do with that one.  This Dancing Sparkles Blog on Blogspot will remain a serious Blog that documents and shares my explorations of the Tarot, and my mystical/metaphysical/Wiccan growth, along with some information about my personal life.  The Tumblr Blog will be mostly Tarot-focused, but in a more lighthearted way.  I will also occasionally offer readings there.  Boy, is the 18th Path manifesting for me, or what??!!

Today, I am taking a look at the next bridge over The Abyss, the 17th Path, which connects Tiphareth with Binah.  This one is a bit different from the 18th Path, which brought Might to Understanding, and hopefully this Path, which brings Beauty to Understanding, will not be quite so traumatic. Although we are bringing that balance of the Middle Pillar into the Pillar of Form, so some stress is necessary, but I will continue to remind myself that “no pain” means “no gain.”

Tiphareth is considered the “Lesser Countenance” which reflects down to us the “Greater Countenance” of Kether.  The 17th Path brings this Devotion to the Great Work (the virtue of Tiphareth) directly to Binah, the sphere which offers shadow and contrast in order that we might perceive shape and form.  **gulp**  Did I just say that I thought this Path might not be so traumatic?  The virtue of Binah is Silence, and I am being told that as I study this Path, Silence may be my tool for bringing Beauty and Understanding together. 

I am suddenly reminded of my very first First Degree homework assignment.  I joined Sacred Mists in the end of May, 2003, and I dove into the training with enthusiasm.  A part of that first homework assignment required me to write essays about a God and a Goddess.  The Goddess I chose to write about was Angerona.  I am sharing that essay here, because I feel it is relevant to the 17th Path.

Angerona, an ancient Roman goddess, is basically known as the goddess of silence.  Like silence itself, she can be summed up in that simple first sentence, yet, again like silence, she is much more complicated than an initial perusal reveals.

A statue of Angerona is hidden away in the Roman Sanctuary of Pleasure, the Sacellum Volupiae.  Angerona is shown as a tall woman with her mouth bound and sealed, with a finger to her lips, emphasizing her silence and her suffering.  It appears that this silence is forced on her (her gag) and accepted by her (her finger to her bound lips).  She is the goddess who protected the ancient city of Rome, and the keeper of the sacred name of the city, which could not be said aloud, so it would never be revealed to Rome’s enemies.  It was even believed that Angerona itself was that secret name.  The ancient Romans also worshipped her because it was believed that Angerona could deliver them and their flocks from angina, a disorder of the heart.  She is also prayed to for deliverance from pain and sorrow, fear and anguish.  Not much is known of Angerona; she is truly of secrecy and of silence, will not speak and disclose the secrets of her being, and seems to leave it to us to enhance our personal awareness of her meaning.

And so, I thought about silence itself.  Silence seems like a simple concept on the surface, yet I find that not to be so.  Silence does not originate from something else, but rather, it was there before the “something else,” and will be there when the “something else” is gone.  Silence has different characteristics.  I remember standing on a cliff overlooking a large lake in upstate New York, and for a moment there was no noise, not even the sound of the wind.  In that silent moment, I felt aware of the openness and immensity of the universe, but yet I felt very much a part of that openness and immensity.  Standing momentarily silent in a pine forest, I experienced a different kind of silence; more secret, more inward, more aware of the different energies around me.  The silence to be experienced in an empty church is different still; regal, and charged with the energy of veneration.  And silence is not only experienced by ears and hearing, but rather it surrounds us.  When I am quiet I can sense its presence, but it was there all along, and is with me even now, even if I do not listen for it.

We as modern Americans are surrounded by noise.  Even when no one is speaking, our homes are full of noises; sitting on our front porches, we are surrounded by sounds.  It is very easy to forget the power of silence.  Thanks to this Path I have chosen to travel on, I am re-learning its power.

I also thought about relief from pain, sorrow and worry; common enough experiences in the mundane world, and I became aware that the deliverance from these trials would also bring a kind of silence.  This would be a relief from the inner wailing accompanying may trials that we bear in life; that time that is not yet the return of joy, but is that wonderful weightless feeling of the removal of a burden.

It seems fitting that Angerona is also the goddess of the Winter Solstice.  In ancient Rome, her festival, called Angeronalia, was celebrated on the solstice in December.  Her priests worshipped her then in the temple of Volupia, the goddess of pleasure.  In the present time, we celebrate Yule, the time of the greatest darkness and the longest night of the year.  It is a time of dark, of cold, and of silence, and it is a time of new beginnings, of a relief from that silence.  It seems to me that Angerona is calling on me to use the winter time of silence and dark to look within myself, to find a quiet place and surrender to that quiet, and to learn not to talk, but to listen.

I was recently drawn once again to Angerona, while reading about a new moon ritual.  The new moon can be seen as a parallel to the Winter Solstice; it too is a time of darkness before re-emerging light, the ending before the beginning.  The chant that went with the information drew my thoughts back to Angerona and her silence and secrets several times.  “The shorelines are uncovered by the retreating waves.  The moon is hidden, but the faintest of stars are revealed. . . In the most vast silence and stillness, all is possible.”  These words, too, have caused this epiphany inside of me, this awareness that there is much else in life to experience besides the obvious.  Yes, the ocean is beautiful, but we rarely see many of the treasures left behind by the receding tides.  And the best time for me to pull out my telescope is when there is no moon, for only then can I see, even with just my eyes, the beauty of the universe undimmed.

And so, thanks to my learning of Angerona, I am embarking on a road to self-discovery, of using silence like a second skin, a skin that has been sensitized to become aware of things that would ordinarily be missed.  “Be quiet enough to listen,” Angerona seems to say to me, with her finger to her bound lips, “But not to me.”  Thanks to my fascination with this goddess and the scarcity of information about her, I am forced to look elsewhere for more about her; I am forced to look within myself, and I am inspired to emulate her.  This is definitely a challenge, but the outcome of meeting this challenge is learning more about myself, and hopefully learning more about the subtle hidden world around me.  Angerona has helped me to begin ignoring the outer shouting and bright lights in the mundane world, so that I may hopefully hear the quiet inner voices that are rich with meaning.  One of the histories that I read stated that Angerona was the mother of Sophia, the goddess of wisdom and knowledge.  Maybe this is Angerona’s message: silence gives birth to wisdom.


Monday, June 27, 2011

Two of Pentacles/Page of Wands.  Wow!!! The Two of Pentacles (Jupiter, expansiveness and growth, justice, fortune, in Capricorn, “I build,” ambition, caution, cunning) reminds me that everything always ebbs and flows, and I need to be able to ride the waves in order to take advantage of their energies.  The cool thing about this Two is that if I allow myself to ride the wave, I will get a real nice kick out of the process today.  The enthusiasm I can generate will tie in nicely with my 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), who uses assertion and action in order to feed her need for adventure and excitement.  This Page tends to be a free spirit with childlike optimism, and since the suit of Wands is associated with Fire and the Will, she can often manifest that optimism into reality.  What a nice combination!  The Earth of the Pentacles card (and the duality and balance and polarity of the number 2) makes great fuel for the fire of the suit of Wands.  And since the rank of Page corresponds with the element of Earth, I end up with a nice, balanced flame, not out of control at all.

My Thoth card is the Nine of Cups reversed.  “Happiness” The Nine of Cups (Jupiter, expansiveness and growth, justice, fortune, in Pisces, “I believe,” feeling, duality, soul growth, spirituality) is about powerful satisfaction on all levels (emotional, physical and spiritual) and a fulfilling sense of accomplishment.  Uncle Al sees the happiness and fulfillment associated with this card as mostly coming to us through luck (rather than through the discipline of, say, the Nine of Pentacles).  Because this Nine is reversed, I may need to be careful that fulfillment does not become a distraction; a bit of satisfaction is a good thing, but in order to manifest it to its fullest potential, I can’t sit back and let it sit.

My Legacy card is the Four of Wands, flavored by The High Priestess.  Wow again!!  The Four of Wands (Venus, beauty, allure, relationships, in Aries, “I want,” action oriented, assertive, enthusiastic) is another exciting Wands card to appear today.  This one is about building enough to become established, as a beachhead, or about a pause before continuing, not as a finished product.  The nice thing about this card is that it is quite optimistic; no successes are assured, but it certainly looks as if I am moving in the right direction.  The High Priestess (Water; the Moon, feelings and emotions, illusion, imagination; Gimel, the camel who safely crosses Da’ath, the Abyss, and thus, has the secret of life; and the Path between Tiphareth, the hub of the creation process where energies harmonize and focus to illuminate and clarify, and Kether, the source, limitless possibility), is the source of the power of The Magician, the feminine version of The Hierophant, and the Keeper of the Mysteries.  She can be seen to represent the occult sciences, and both the spiritual bride and the spiritual mother; she is the guardian of secret information and the gatekeeper that allows access to it (or that shuts out those who are not prepared to receive it).  This card has been my significator for the past two years or so, and is a very auspicious card to show up today.

My 6-digit date number is 8, which represents an active and focused attempt to counteract the degeneration of the number 7.

My horoscopes: “Stubborn forces may challenge your easygoing nature today. You would do well to tap into this aggressive energy and use it to follow through on some projects that you've left hanging, Sagittarius. Other people may be unyielding in their positions, but you can easily overcome this by tapping into your flexible, adaptable nature. Don't get upset and restless. Go with the flow.”

And: “Like a pointillist painting by Seurat, your life is made up of many small details that add up to something lovely. But as with that painting, what you see when you focus closely is a bunch of unrelated pieces. Take a step back, and things will fall into place -- you'll see that the complete picture is distinctively beautiful. Try not to be too caught up in your life's details today, and congratulate yourself on the wonderful masterpiece that you're in the process of creating.”

And: “In general, your spirit is upbeat, freedom loving, and adventuresome. Today, however, you might find that it is a bit more intense and possibly a bit somber, especially when it comes to romantic issues. This approach to matters of the heart isn't exactly your normal style, but you are apt to find that it is appropriate for your situation at this time. Make sure you have the right tool for the job at hand.”

My Sun reading: “The Sun/Pluto opposition highlights group activity, and the cooperation works favorably for all. As the icing on the cake, Mars sextile Uranus inspires and peps everyone, especially if you're starting something new. Tonight's inhibited environment could make it hard to get good conversation going if it's one-on-one.”

And today, I can’t help but add my technically focused horoscope: “Find a good forum to exchange ideas. You have an opportunity to do some top-notch strategizing, but only if you feel you can speak freely without being judged. Others are willing to go out on a limb for you -- their input is solid gold!”

From the article “The Ace of Swords: Seizing the Power of Discernment,” by Cheryl Lynne Bradley: “The most subtle changes in our perception of where and who we are in the world can create a ‘Butterfly Effect’ for our mental, physical and spiritual well-being.  Today, I feel as if that butterfly has just flown past me and the breeze from its wings is caressing my cheeks. 

I have officially taken the next step into the world of the Interwebs.  Yes, I did it . . . I created a Twitter account earlier this morning.  I had to use “Dancing_Sparkle” as my ID, but that is certainly close enough to the name of this Blog for people to find me. This afternoon, I will be creating a profile, hopefully linking my Twitter account to my Dancing Sparkles FaceBook Page (yes, I have even created a FaceBook Page for my Blog!!), and then sending out my first Tweet.  I have found that I enjoy knowing that people are reading my Blog; it’s why I created Dancing Sparkles in the first place.  If I am going to remain an “inclusionist” who is fascinated by the limitless horizons presented by the Internet, I need to walk the walk as well as talk the talk.  Thank you to Sean ( for your advice and encouragement.  I’ll be doing my homework, Sean; talk to you when you get back from Africa!

Before I leave the 18th Path, I want to discuss just a bit the Hebrew alphabet symbol that is associated with The Chariot and this Path: Cheth.  Cheth is defined as “hedge” or “fence,” perfect correspondences to the force and form of the 18th Path.  It is this “fence” which allows me to build a reservoir of energy that can be used to balance, to attract or repel.  The fence is composed of both the knowledge and the wisdom that has been gathered thus far, and it is composed of the power and skill (and ethics) that are needed in order to use the knowledge and share the wisdom appropriately.  Very appropriate to think about, today especially.

Interestingly enough, the Hebrew word “Hhaith” is the word for “tailor,” and the Hebrew word “Hiyeth” is the term for “sewing.”  Both can be seen to represent the making of a garment. 

I tend to see the “garment” as the vehicle that the life force takes on so it can be seen.  After all, a garment covers our physical body and it is what we clothe ourselves in, in order to go into the outside world.  I see Nature as the garment the Goddess wears so we can see Her or sense Her presence.  It is fitting that Cheth is the symbol for both the Tarot Major and the Path, because it is about wielding the skills which allow others to perceive us (perceive us as we wish to be perceived).  It is only through mastering the wielding of my entire “self” that I can ever hope to master my environment and how others perceive me. 

This is important.  I can be whoever I want to be, as long as I believe I can, and as long as I access the tools to manifest what I want.


Sunday, June 26, 2011

Ten of Wands/Ace of Cups reversed. The Ten of Wands (Saturn, discipline, responsibility, limitations and resistance, in Sagittarius, “I seek,” philosophic, fun-loving, blundering) tells of the blocking of the creative power of the suit of Wands, most likely because the Fire of creativity has run out of fuel.  This card is also about being held accountable, about pushing against the current flows of energy, or attempting to do so, beyond the time I have the ability to accomplish anything. 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) in an upright position 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, as well as love.  Because the card is reversed, I might not be able to determine the emotions of others or tap into my Inner Voice very well.

My Thoth card is the Seven of Cups reversed.  “Debauched” is the keyword Crowley assigns to  The Seven of Cups (Venus, beauty, allure, relationships, in Scorpio, “I desire,” intense, controlling, obsessive, mysterious) is letting me know that there are messages out there to pick up, and choices or opportunities to access.  Each of the seven cups contains what appears to be a gift which corresponds to a planet and a Major Arcana card; the Wreath corresponds with Saturn and The World; the Castle corresponds with Mars and The Tower, the Woman corresponds with Venus and The Empress; the Snake corresponds with Mercury and The Magician; the Veil corresponds with the Moon and The High Priestess, the Jewels correspond with Jupiter and The Wheel of Fortune, and the Dragon corresponds with our Sun and The Sun.  Since this is a Cups card, in order to understand each of these gifts I need to also understand how I feel about the potential that each offers.  I need to also remember that sometimes each of the choices offered, or the possibility of choosing at all, is an illusion.

My Legacy card is the Ace of Wands reversed, flavored by Death. The Ace of Wands (Leo, “I am,” passionate, dramatic, egotistical, Virgo, “I serve,” practical, analytical, sensible, orderly) tells of the first spark of a new and exciting creative process, and an encouraging and empowering awareness of my own valuable creative talents.  I should feel ready to tackle the world, but I may not be tapping into the confidence in myself that is needed.  But the card is there, so the confidence is there, too.  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, the ending of an era and the fear of the unknown result of change.  Death is irreversible, but its effects can be liberating, and perhaps my two Aces are reversed today because the transformation of Death is in-progress.

Aces present seeds, potential and possibilities.  Both of my Aces are reversed, so those seeds are not yet sprouting, but they are there.  I need to think about the suit of Wands and the suit of Cups, and the possibilities offered by each of them, in order to access those possibilities or become more aware of them.

My 6-digit date number is 7, the number that tells of a pause (and possibly a choice to either accept what has been accumulated as sufficient, or strive for more) which occurs before the beginning of degeneration.

My horoscopes: “Spare no emotional or monetary expense today, Sagittarius. Whatever you put into this day will come back to you tenfold. Feel free to indulge and delight in your fun-loving nature. This day speaks of freedom from restraint of all kinds. Break the chains and explore new worlds in your mind and your physical surroundings. Don't say no when the adventure bus comes around to pick you up."

And: “With all the masculine energy that's in your life right now, you're going to feel very challenged during this day. Everything will feel like a competition to you, a call to step up and show everyone what you're really made of. You can have a lot of fun with this type of energy today, especially if you don't let things get too competitive. Just keep a good attitude, and don't be afraid that your status will be affected by your performance. It's all a game."

And: “Your sensual side might show itself today, and you might find yourself viewing young men in tight jeans more appreciatively than you usually do. Racy novels and movies may suddenly seem appealing, and you might want to make some purchases at the perfume or lingerie counters. Romantic encounters are intense and passionate - so make sure you allow plenty of time for them! Don't be surprised if you turn into a Siren! Enjoy yourself!"

My Sun reading: “A Sun/Uranus square contributes an element of surprise, not to mention stirring energy and excitement. Tonight's new romance could be a strong "love at first sight" attachment. The caveat here is that it's best to let things blossom. Start with friendship. Build for the present and don't focus on the future."

After walking this morning, I sat on the front porch for a bit with a cup of coffee (Starbucks Vienna; thanks, Curly!) and the magazine section of the New York Times.  I found an interesting article called “An Accidental, Experimental Masterpiece” by Sam Anderson which compared the Farmer’s Almanac to the Internet.  Now, I firmly believe that the Internet is a part of the astral realms.  I have performed workings and attended and led rituals in chat rooms with amazing results; I participate in Reiki Shares performed either by everyone having a particular page open on their computers, or by everyone entering a private chat room.  One of the Pagan Brain Trust members is an Internet Shaman who performs the most amazing and powerful workings by creating and then releasing sigils into the Internet. 

I found some interesting concepts in this article, concepts which tickle my brain, which call me and lure me to think about them further. 

One concept originated in part through a debate between Wikipedia editors.  Basically, the discussion revolved around the “deletionists,” the ones who feel that not every speck of information should be placed on the web, and the “inclusionists,” who feel that there should be no limit to what information gets placed on the web.  Mind you, this does not necessarily include pornography or other unethical actions, but it does include seemingly useless information.  Like our minds, our ability to visualize and imagine, it appears that the Internet is without true boundaries; each time that humanity believes it is approaching the far edge of its capabilities, the Internet expands once again. 

Is this a good thing?  The “deletionists” would say no; they would say that having access to limitless amounts of information could destroy the concepts of meaning, proportion, and even authority and validity.  Too much of anything, they say, is no good. 

I am tending to agree with the “inclusionists.”  In his book, “The Information: A History, A Theory, A Flood,” James Gleik describes the Internet as “a vast, interlocking set of databases growing asymptotically toward the ideal of All Previous Text.”  The Internet, it seems, gives us so much control over what we can access and upload that we end up loosing control.  But again I ask: is this a good thing? 

Every culture felt fear when new technologies appeared.  Early critics of the telegraph machine felt that all this instant communication would create shallow thinkers who would loose the ability to write and compose because fees for messages were based on the number of characters being sent, and so abbreviations became the norm.  When the telephone became available, everyone feared that the emotions communicated by voice inflections would blind us to facts.  And so on.  Here we are, accessing an Internet that seems eternal, a hard concept to wrap ones brain around.  Anderson puts this into words nicely.  He says: “The Web itself is an eternally unfinished monument to inclusion – a text that aspires to be as big and involved as the world it describes.”  Now, how cool is that?  Having access to that kind of information source could actually enable us to . . . evolve!!

But a diet of massive information only, without a pause, is not healthy either.  And so, I will post this entry, and then turn off my computer and walk to the beach.  The only way all this information can be assimilated is by alternating the times of Cosmic Downloads with times of disconnection. 

Glimpse of the Machinery of the Universe?  Check.  Time to carry water, chop wood, and walk on the beach.


Friday, June 24, 2011

Eight of Pentacles/Eight of Wands reversed. The Eight of Pentacles (Sun, the inner core of a person or situation, in Virgo, “I serve,” practical, analytical, sensible, orderly) is about employment, commissions offered because of skills or abilities, and about finding one’s niche in life. The work associated with the Eight of Pentacles involves a conscious focus or application of knowledge, usually in a solitary manner and usually relating in some way to a topic connected to the element of Earth (and thus, infused with creativity, hope and an appreciation for beauty). 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. The card is reversed, however, which means that clarity and intelligence just might be muddied and blurred because my focus is on the wrong thing. The Eight of Pentacles is a deliberate card focused on details, and this reversed Eight of Wands could be supporting that, and warning me that being too quick to act could bite me in the ass.

My Thoth card is the Nine of Disks reversed. “Gain” reversed; for some reason, this one is reversed most of the time. The Nine of Disks (Venus, beauty, allure, relationships, in Virgo, “I serve,” practical, analytical, work and service oriented) is a card of accomplishment through the imposition of discipline. Crowley sees this one as feeling satisfaction with the harvest that has come through the seeds personally sown, but as is typical for Uncle Al, he also warns of the potential for stagnation that can be found in satisfaction of any kind. Since the card is reversed, I may not be happy at the end of the day with my accomplishments, and I may very well figure out that this unhappiness has occurred because I did not apply the correct discipline.

My Legacy card is the Three of Wands, flavored by the Queen of Wands. Tthe Three of Wands (Sun, the inner core of a person or situation, the deepest self and personal power, in Aries, “I want,” action oriented, pioneering, assertive) position tells of being successfully established after effort, and of being supported by others. It tells me of the presence of great potential that is present because I prepared correctly, it tells me that the final manifestation and its appropriateness is directly related to what I infuse into that potential, and it reminds me that I need to take the long view, for the final result may not end up being what I see right now. The Queen of Wands (cusp of Pisces, “I believe,” feelings, duality, soul growth, spirituality, and Aries, “I want,” action oriented, assertive, competitive) is Water (cold/binds and wet/adapts, and emotional, sensitive and imaginative energy which prefers to take the same path) of Fire (hot/separates and dry/shapes, and spontaneous, impulsive and energetic change), and because Water and Fire tend to cancel each other out, we are left with Air and Earth. She knows what she wants, but she can be stubborn. She is flavoring the Three of Wands, and so she is telling me that I should have faith in my own ability to deal with challenges, I should be optimistic because I create my reality through my expectations, and I should tap into my own tendency to tackle a task with dedication and sincerity.

Since my first two cards are number Eight cards, and since one is upright and one is reversed, I will include a tiny bit of information about the number 8. This number reminds us that we have skill to move forward, so move, and follow both instincts and the directions of the Inner Voice. It tells of trying to gain accomplishments, order and achievement, of the application of self-discipline and authority; 8 is the number of both building and destruction. This number represents the concept of a Remedy or a Reaction to the degeneration of the 7, and the active application, with awareness, of that Remedy or Reaction. Traits associated with the number 8: positive: ambitious, interested in manifesting dreams, constant efforts to succeed; negative: demands recognition, selfish and self-centered, chasing material wealth.

My 6-digit date number is 5, the number of motion that dispels stagnation.

My horoscopes: “You will be the hit of the party today, Sagittarius. Everyone wants to talk to you. Great transitions are happening in your life right now, and you should look at how you can adopt new principles and attitudes toward them. Your emotions suggest that you take an unconventional approach to the day. The things you learn may be things you want to incorporate into your being on a long-term basis.”

And: “Someone is back on the scene, but doesn't know that you know it. You hold all the power right now, and if you think that a reconnection needs to happen, you need to make it happen. But if you want this person to make the first move, keep in mind that that may never happen. Instead of waiting for others to get the ball rolling today, you need to give it a push. Making a small effort will take you a long way in both self-esteem and in your relationships.”

And: “Because your tendency recently has been to brood over everything, a day like today cannot be anything but beneficial. It has been difficult for you to find material satisfaction lately, but today offers you a view into the world of the intangible and unreal. You may find it especially gratifying to participate in an artistic or religious activity.”

My Sun reading: “The Aries Moon squares Cancer Mercury today. The two combine to act as a highly intuitive detection service. Motivations are like open books, for better or worse. You command attention tonight, and some interesting people want to know you almost as much as you want to know them.”

It is interesting to me how the events of my mundane world correspond with the lessons I am learning within my study of the Qabalah. I should not be surprised that events seem to be difficult for me now, as I am studying the ways to bridge or cross the Abyss, Da’ath. The 18th Path is only one of these bridges, the first I am looking at, and already I am being asked by circumstances to make hard choices, and then to live by those choices.

As a Wiccan and a Witch, I know that I create my own reality by my actions, my words, my feelings, my emotions, my thoughts, my hopes and my fears. Even with this awareness, it is sometimes difficult to not dwell on perceived hurts, to not brood on the actions or words of another that seem to be presented to inflict pain. I can’t only know and understand that I create my own reality; I must also choose to use that knowledge and understanding, use it in every instance, not just the easy ones. And I must remember that it is the difficult situations, the ones that seem to be drawing me inexorably toward dwelling on and brooding about the intentions that I impose on the words and actions of another (and we are always imposing our interpretation onto the intentions of others, don’t doubt this for a moment) that are the most important ones to respond to through the message of the 18th Path.

Knowledge and wisdom come to us with the burden of responsibility. There are absolutely no exceptions to this rule, none at all. My dearest friend Icarius! always reminds me that I can’t unsee what I have seen and can’t unknow what I know. Now, through my studies of the Tree of Life in general, and the 18th Path in particular, I am also being reminded that once I know and understand and believe a concept, I have a responsibility to color my choices with that concept, no exceptions. If I don’t willingly accept this responsibility, and if I don’t willingly attempt to the best of my ability to apply the concepts to every single part of my life, I won’t be allowed to move forward. No pain, no gain. Do not pass Go or collect $200.

Oy. Sheesh. This is harder than I thought it would be. If this level of knowledge and wisdom is this difficult to assimilate and make a part of my existence, what must the burdens be like that Goddess and God are carrying around with Them? How can They find the strength to interact with us at all, considering the potential consequences?

“Harm none” is the basic Wiccan presentation of the Golden Rule. These two words sound so simple to those who are first embarking on the Path of learning about their Craft, but I have come to learn that these two words often present difficult paradoxes for us to solve. How do we decide which choice is actually the one to bring the least harm? How do we judge others, and ourselves, in a realistic manner? How do we control the tendency to infuse the emotions we believe are present (often incorrectly) onto a situation? And once I am able to achieve this difficult task, how do I prevent myself from expecting others to also be able to do this, and how do I **not** judge them when they don't?  These are the questions I am asking myself right now, as I digest what I have learned about the 18th Path and shoulder the responsibilities associated with knowledge and wisdom as I go through my mundane day.

I have a lot to think about as I drive down to Cape May this afternoon.


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Chariot reversed/Knight of Wands. The Chariot corresponds with Water (cold/binds and wet/adapts, and sensitive, emotional and imaginative energy that likes to stay the same or follow the same course), Cancer (“I feel,” sensitive, tenacious, nurturing, moody), Cheth (the fence), and the Path between Geburah (the place where forms and structure are challenged or affirmed) and Binah (female receptive energy and the origin of form and structure), and is related to emotional control and the training of our emotions so that we can use them to bring greater good into our lives. This card is reversed, so today I need to be very cautious when dealing with emotions, either too much or too little, for any imbalance could derail my focuses. 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 his ability to use words and his intellect, and his ability to see outside the box. He is unpredictable, which can make him difficult to deal with, and indeed he is both encouraging me to be open to new experiences and warning me to keep a bit grounded; I should also remember that words have quite a bit of power, and be careful how I use them today.

My Thoth card is the Six of Cups reversed. The Six of Cups, “Pleasure” (Sun, the inner core of a person or situation in Scorpio, “I desire,” intense, compulsive, deep, obsessive), in an upright position tells of beneficial connections with others; it reminds us that happiness comes to us through continuous effort over time and that if we share our happiness with others, it will come back to us. The card is reversed; I need to be cautious as I look at past events, and perhaps try not to believe that my happiness can be given to me by others.

My Legacy card is The Tower, flavored by Temperance. The Tower corresponds with Fire (hot/separates and dry/shapes, and spontaneous, impulsive, energetic change), Mars (action, spontaneity, aggression, drive), Phe (mouth or speech), and the Path between Hod (which provides analysis and communication) and Netzach (which offers the stimulating factors of emotion and inspiration), and it is a card of divine enlightenment **not** achieved through gentle methods, but the end result is always worth the stresses and challenges of the process itself. A Sagittarius (“I seek,” philosophic, adventurous, blundering) card, Temperance also corresponds with Fire (hot/separates and dry/shapes, and spontaneous, impulsive, energetic change), Samekh (the tent post), and the Path between Yesod (the place where patterns and images emerge that may manifest into the physical world of action and outer reality) and Tiphareth (the hub of the creation process where energies harmonize and focus to illuminate and clarify). This card is one of the cards that has always had a personal message to me; it corresponds to Archangel Uriel, and tells me that balance is dynamic and the ability to maintain a dynamic balance takes constant practice and work. It is flavoring my Tower card today, and perhaps the two cards are telling me that there are values to experiencing chaos; I can’t ever expect to control what I have not personally experienced.

My Pearls of Wisdom Litha card is The Emperor. Here is the order and control I am looking for. 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. The Emperor is about taking responsibility, he is about power and control over himself and/or others, and he is about manifesting his good intentions through ethics and order and stability and structure and regulation. The Pearls of Wisdom Emperor is about ambition, worldly power and perseverance. He governs himself through the application of discipline, and he tames the ego but does not destroy it. Tolerance and diplomatic peace should be the watchwords for me, and I should focus on using my power without becoming a dictator.

My 6-digit date number is 3, the number which tells of the creation of something new from the potential of the number 1 and the polarity and balance of the number 2.

My horoscopes: “You can do no wrong today, Sagittarius. In fact, you can navigate through the cracks without anyone noticing. You may find that you would rather be up on center stage. This is fine, too, just as long as the choice is yours. Independence is a key theme for you today. You will find that the more you can break free, the better your mood will be.”

And: “Despite some recent negative events, you should not indulge in any 'stinking thinking' today -- there's no sense in it. Now more than ever, your positive thinking has the power to get things back on track for you and your people. Family situations are one specific area where your input and sunny attitude can brighten things up considerably. Send a family member a note or a little gift, to let her or him know that things are getting better all the time.”

And: “A female friend whom you haven't seen for a while could surprise you with a phone call or short visit. A lot of interesting news and useful information could be exchanged, benefiting both of you. You may make a number of short journeys throughout the day, as you have a lot that needs to be done. A small increase in income could also be in the works. In the evening: Rent a romantic video.”

My Sun reading: “There are visions of something new under the Sun/Neptune trine. Mars contributes help in focusing in the right direction in order to change things in a positive way. If you haven't had the energy before, you're motivated now. This evening's social life could be very interesting.”

Litha Blessings!! A bit of information about Midsummer, the Summer Solstice.

Midsummer is and has been celebrated by just about every Nature or agriculturally focused culture throughout time. The word “solstice” is from the Latin word “solstitium,” which means “sun stands still”; thus, it is the longest day of the year that is celebrated at Litha, the Wiccan Midsummer celebration.

Gerald Gardner believed that the solar festivals (solstices and equinoxes) were not original to the Celts (he believed they came from the Middle East) and the ancient Celts did not keep detailed written records, but the early Christian monks did, and through these writings, combined with the surviving folklore, we know that Litha was a time to honor the space between the earth and the heavens, and a time to celebrate the peak of the power of the sun and the daylight hours with hilltop bonfires. Besides finding balance between the land and the sky, Litha is a time to find balance between the elements of Fire and Water; the bonfires are said to chase away evil effects, and immersing oneself in any kind of water on Litha will have a healing effect.

The solstices are seen within Wiccan traditions as the time of a mythical battle between light and dark. The Oak King, the ruler of the waxing year, and the Holly King, the ruler of the waning year, are said to battle for power and dominance at each of the solstices. On the Summer Solstice, the Oak King, who has been in power since Yule, is mortally wounded in battle with the Holly King, who then rules until the Winter Solstice, when the Oak King defeats him.

It was the Romans who worshipped Juno Luna who were the source of the name of the month containing the Solstice, June, and the source of the popularity of this month for weddings (because among other things, Juno was the Patroness of marriage). Christians celebrate John the Baptist Day on the Summer Solstice, and because baptism is both a mark of repentance from sin and of the opening to and acceptance of the Holy Spirit, this celebration is also connected to both Fire and Water.

The Tarot card that is connected to the 18th Path is . . . drum roll . . . The Chariot! One of my cards today, but in a reversed position. The Chariot is about control, about getting where you want to go, and about the personal choices made under the auspices of The Lovers. The Chariot is about travel, change, movement or digestion, and in its intense form, about the “die-hard,” and about using violence to maintain traditional ideas. The success represented by The Chariot is not always stable or enduring.

In “More Simplified Magic: Pathworking and the Tree of Life,” Ted Andrews describes the 18th Path as “crossing the Abyss by the Gate of Death,” and reminds me that this particular bridge over Da’ath is guarded by the Dark Mother, who brings enlightenment to the darkness by the imposition of the correct discipline. Hence, “Pillar of Form”! The first few steps along this bridge are like walking on the edge of a knife, but with every step further that I have the courage to take, the bridge becomes wider and easier to travel upon. Once we experience true enlightenment when surrounded by darkness, we end up also finding the will to go on despite difficult challenges.

Form and direction, indeed!

And finally, I invite my readers to check out my latest entry on the Sacred Mists Blog, entitled “Tarot and the Two Sides of Balance,” found here:

Happy trails, Icarus!, and safe journey!!


Friday, June 17, 2011

Nine of Cups reversed/Knight of Pentacles reversed. The Nine of Cups (Jupiter, expansiveness and growth, justice, fortune, in Pisces, “I believe,” feeling, duality, soul growth, spirituality) is about powerful satisfaction on all levels (emotional, physical and spiritual) and a fulfilling sense of accomplishment. Because this Nine is reversed, I may find that my emotions and feelings are not flowing in a nice and even manner. These are emotions and feelings, though, and I have had some good progress with nudging them in the direction they need to go; awareness of the potential is the key. 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. Because he is reversed, I may need to pay a bit more attention to what I am doing, especially because he is combined with the Nine of Cups reversed. I also need to beware of idleness, stubbornness and intolerance.

My Thoth card is the Prince of Disks. Bookends!! Crowley sees his Knights as Princes, and his Kings as Knights. This Airy (hot/separates and wet/adapts, and quick, animated energy that usually brings problems or challenges that bring growth) Prince of Earth (cold/binds and dry/shapes, and stable, material, practical energies that are slow to change) is to Uncle Al a combination of both elements. He is dependable and hard working, but not very good at thinking out of the box. He is utilitarian, but can tend to be self-indulgent. Since I have both the upright and the reversed card in my throws today, I may find myself in the position of needing to choose between being focused yet boring, or lethargic and stagnant, or totally impulsive and on fire. Danger!! However, this Knight is also into exercising his body and enjoying his senses, so not too much danger.

My Legacy card is the Nine of Cups, flavored by the Ace of Swords reversed. Double Bookends!! That is the first time that has ever happened! Because I have both the upright and reversed Nine of Cups, I may find that today is a mixed bag of emotions and feelings. The emotional chaos may be hard to deal with, but it also presents some unique energy for me to experience. Awareness is the key! The Ace of Swords (Capricorn, “I build,” ambition, caution authority, cunning, Aquarius and Pisces, “I believe,” feeling, duality, soul growth, artistic) can be seen as the birthplace of ideas and concepts, and of challenges which offer the opportunity for growth, and also the beginning of the development of a sense of identity. The element of Air, which corresponds with the suit of Swords, does not have self-generated impulses, but it can easily have an effect when influenced by the other elements.

More about the Nine of Cups. This card can certainly represent the cat with the canary feathers in the corner of his mouth, but to me the energies of the Nine of Cups are more about completeness. They show that a balance of awareness of blessings received and of blessings offered has been attained, and that is a nice feeling, at least to me. This card presents being in the position of believing that all is well and that the future is under control. If ill-dignified, the happiness is still there, but there are faults in its construction, or the feelings are surface only, and will be washed away by the next storm. We also need to remember that the fullest expression of contentment serves as a catalyst for stagnation. The watch-words are “change guarantees stability; stability guarantees change.” The stillness of the Nine of Cups needs to be temporary if it is to remain healthy.

And, more about the Knight/Prince of Pentacles/Disks. The combination of pure Air and pure Earth that is the Knight of Pentacles presents all of the variations of elemental dignities, all wrapped up in one package. To me, this combination makes this Knight useful in some circumstances. If I need to observe something or someone with intense focus, this Knight is my method. If I need to bring great amounts of energy or focus onto some physical world matter or task, I should definitely tap into this Knight, for these are his talents. This Knight is slow to anger, which is a good thing, but once he gets angry, he is slow to cool down. Because the Knights are about intensity and purity of manifestation, I also need to be certain that I am constantly checking to see if this “all-or-nothing” method is helping me or hurting me. In a severely ill-dignified presence, he can be considered a “mouth breather,” so caution (Earth) needs to be balanced with awareness (Fire).

My 6-digit date number is 7, the number that tells of the pause which occurs as balance begins to degenerate.

My horoscopes: “Feel free to ignite your passion with the help of the people around you, Sagittarius. Join with those who share similar dreams and make a plan for accomplishing whatever you choose. The more creative you can be with your planning, data collecting, and execution, the better off you will be. The white-hot fire within you is ready to blaze.”

And: “The amount of work you put into something is important today, so try not to cut any corners. Give yourself all the time you need, so you won't rush and miss some important details. Be thorough with everything you do -- spell-check every email before sending it off, and make sure you have returned all important phone calls by the middle of the day. Leaving too many questions unanswered will cause someone's imagination to spin into some weird directions.”

And: “It is a terrific day for you, in which you will find that your jovial approach to every situation is just what the doctor ordered. Spend time with children and enjoy their magical world. Spread your love and affection around to the people who surround you. Make sure that the corners of people's mouths are turning up instead of down. A friendly attitude will take you quite far.”

My Sun reading: “Your exceptional memory serves you well under a Capricorn Moon. You show the world that you've forgotten more than many people know. Your knowledge is just what is needed at the time. This Moon inspires good judgment, honesty, and sincerity. It also arouses strong will, but with a softer side.”

Last night, the Pagan Brain Trust got together to celebrate I!Q’s trip to Ireland. She leaves on Thursday, and will be spending the next eight to ten weeks wandering around Ireland, following her heart, and connecting to her culture, all up close and in person. This is to be not only a trip of growth and evolution for I!Q, but a trip of healing as well. Somehow, I get the feeling that she will do both, and well, and come back a more powerful Shaman who is much more comfortable in her own skin. Safe trip and many blessings, my love!

Another of my sisters of the heart is also dealing with a journey of transformation, but this one is a bit different. Carolyn is supporting and assisting her father as he leaves this world and the vehicle of this incarnation. I am proud of her; she has taken on the task of watching over her father during these last weeks, and has managed, despite many stresses, to keep him immersed in the love and support of his family as he gradually leaves his body.

I was privileged to spend a bit of time with Earl when I visited Carolyn last October. I have been sending Reiki to the Universe in his name, to ease his Passage or assist him to stay a bit longer until he is ready, whichever is his choice and for his highest good. Earl is Christian, but because I have met him and spoken to him I am certain that he is able to accept my support in the name of love. Journey on now, Earl, my friend. We will follow when we can. May you be born again at the same time and in the same place as those you knew and loved in this life. May you know them again and love them again. Blessed be.

Today I begin to study the next section of the Paths of the Tree of Life. Paths 18 through 14 present the different methods available through study of the Qabalah to cross The Abyss of Da’at and reach the Supernal Triangle, the highest and most abstract qualities of Deity. The 18th Path connects Geburah and Binah, and runs up the Pillar of Form from the middle to the top. Geburah is Might, and by moving up the Pillar of Form and into Binah, which represents Understanding, I am learning to discern those moments when power should be offered because the recipient is worthy or can benefit from that power, from those moments when power needs to be withheld in order to create a situation that brings the highest good. This Path also teaches me how to decide if I am dealing with truth or falsehood.

The 18th Path is about taking on both form and direction (as opposed to the 16th Path, which connects Chesed and Chokmah and offers mobility and direction); it reminds us that not only are we responsible for gaining the skills necessary to control the power at our disposal, but we are also responsible to discern the proper and ethical uses of that power. And this makes sense. It takes time, effort and prior experience to understand power enough to actually control it. It also takes time, effort and prior experience to have the ability to correctly and effectively decide exactly how to best use (or not use) that power we have learned to control. This concept belongs exactly where it is: moving upward along and to the top of the Pillar of Form/Restriction.


Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Empress/The Sun. Woohoo! Nice pair! The Empress corresponds with Earth (cold/binds and dry/shapes, and stable, material, practical energies that are slow to change), Venus (beauty, allure, pleasure, relationships), Daleth (door or womb) and the Path between Binah (female receptive energy and the origin of form and structure) and Chokmah (dynamic male energy and the origin of vital force and polarity). She represents creativity, fertility, abundance, the physical body and its senses, and the material world and the workings of Nature. She is also the first place in the Major Arcana that we see love. The Sun corresponds with Fire (hot/separates and dry/shapes, spontaneous, impulsive and energetic change), our Sun (the inner core of a person or situation), Resh (the face; reason), and the Path between Yesod (the place where patterns and images emerge that may manifest in the physical world) and Hod (provides analysis and communication) and tells of the presence (or the coming) of a period of light that will dispel the darkness. The Sun card can be seen as the halfway point between the blinding flash that is The Tower and the soft, gentle and subtle glow that is The Star. This is the dynamic balance first hinted at in Temperance, but now fully manifested. These cards together tell of a nice balance between the pleasure of my own physical senses and the pleasure to be had from connecting to my world.

My Thoth card is the Seven of Disks. “Failure” today; yep. Feeling out of gas, and this lethargy is the sensations hinted at in Crowley’ Seven of Disks. The Thoth Seven of Disks (Saturn, discipline, responsibility, law and order, in Taurus, “I have,” sensual, cautious, stubborn) tells of a heavy pause that just might be hard to counteract, due to the Earthiness of both the number 7 and the suit of Disks. The disks in the image are arranged in the shape of the form “Rubeus” (Latin for “Red” and shaped like an overturned glass). Rubeus represents an inversion, meaning good in all that is evil, and evil in all that is good, and if I was using the geomantric shapes as divinatory tools and threw Rubeus first, the reading would end. On a low note. This inertia is not yet total stagnation, and if I remain aware of its dangers, I should survive intact. Time for some charged water.

My Legacy card is the Page of Coins, flavored by the Five of Wands. The Page of Coins (Aries, “I want,” assertive, action oriented, Taurus, “I have,” sensual, cautious, stubborn, and Gemini, “I think,” curious, sociable, dual) is a listener, and this Page listens to both sides of an argument because he is also a student, and is eager to learn. Like all Pages, this one likes to learn; however, he is a bit of a skeptic. He needs to touch or see in order to believe, and I might have trouble taking things on faith today. The Five of Wands represents Saturn (discipline, responsibility, law and order) in Leo (“I am, passionate, dramatic, egotistical), and it indicates a struggle that appears at cross purposes. This Five can represent either outer conflict or inner conflict, not earth-shattering but filled with the potential to derail and debilitate. I should be careful that my need for proof does not become a jihad. Balance is needed.

My Full Moon Pearls of Wisdom card is Strength. The traditional meaning for the Strength card (Fire, hot/separates and dry/shapes, and spontaneous, impulsive and energetic energy; Leo, “I am,” passionate, dramatic, egotistical; Teth, sieve or basket, digestion; and the Path between Geburah, the place where forms and structures are challenged or affirmed, and Chesed, the place where forms and structures are stabilized and nurtured) is the presence of the ability to tame our primitive and wild emotions. The Pearls of Wisdom Strength card tells of the Ego bowing to Spirit or the Higher Self. This potential to overcome resistance happens not through the application of force, but rather, through the application of love. There is nothing so strong as gentleness, and nothing so gentle as strength.

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

My horoscopes: “If you've been tired lately, Sagittarius, it may be due to stress. Today's aspects bring an added energy to communication. It would be wise to talk about some of the stress. Worry, anxiety, and fear are huge drains on physical and emotional health. Exercise can alleviate some of these. For others, talking is key. Find the most effective ways to rid yourself of such energy drains and feel better.”

And: “Applying greater force will not get you farther toward your goals today. Right now, it's more about nuance than about brute strength. Your charms are intoxicating, and people will be eager to comply with what you want, once you show them what is in it for them. True, this tactic will take some time and patience, but the outcome will create much more harmony and affection in your future. So avoid the hard sell, and don't tell anyone what to do. Just show them how fun your way is!”

And: “It may be hard for you to feel connected to anyone today. You are probably better off just keeping to yourself. If you are feeling sad or depressed, it is best to work through these feelings on your own. Other people are not apt to be too sympathetic to your situation. You are better off sticking to your work in order to keep the demons out of your head.”

My Sun reading: “A sensitive Mercury trines Neptune, creating both receptive and resourceful energy. You can create magic with this imaginative duo. When you add them to tonight's Moon/Venus transit, the Universe supplies you with an abundance of people, places, and things you love. It doesn't get better than this!”

I taught my first Sacred Mists Tarot Chat last night on the Qabalah and the Tree of Life. Yep, me, Miss “Elements Are My Thing” taught a Tarot Chat on the Tarot and the Tree. My, my; Uncle Al is probably laughing right now. But I will be the first to stand up and say “yep, I was wrong; there are good things to be learned from the Qabalah”; my Pathworking is having awesome effects.

Speaking of Pathworking, since I have reached the point in my Pathworking where I need to learn about the methods for crossing The Abyss, I think it is time to learn of Da’at. “Da’at” can be translated as “knowledge” or “consciousness.” The interesting thing about the knowledge associated with Da’at is that it is knowledge not of the outside world, but of the one who is knowing, knowledge of the self.

Nothing is more frightening than this knowledge of ‘I’ -- yet nothing is more empowering. Without it, there is no accountability, no freedom, no way to take your life into your own hands. All of these things become possible only once you can look back at your own self and say, ‘Why did I do that and not this?’ ‘Is this really what I want to do?’ ‘Is this really who I want to be?’ Only then can we call you a bar mitzvah.” And “. . . Da’at unravels from its cocoon and a human being emerges. For that is a human being: A being that knows itself.” From the essay, “Da’at: The Knowing I,” by Rabbi Tzvi Freeman, from the website.

The knowledge and consciousness offered by Da’at cannot be obtained by one pass through the Tree; of this I am certain. If I had not done the hard work I have done over the past eight plus years, I would not be finding such resonation in this understanding I am gaining by looking at Da’at. This is not the time of the initial opening of the mind, but rather it is a time of realization.

Da’at is also associated with the cerebellum and the powers of memory and concentration. Memory and concentration happen because I am able to recognize and sense the potential meaningfulness of the ideas and concepts I am learning through both Binah (receptive energy and the sacred feminine) and Chokmah (active energy and the sacred masculine). This recognition and sensitivity happens because of the two levels of Da’at: the higher level (which secures the continuous bond between Chokmah and Binah) and the lower level (which connects the intellect as a whole with the realm of emotion, allowing me to act in accordance with the essential truths integrated into my intellect).

Da’at is seen as the reflection of Kether within the realm of my consciousness. It is the inner dimension (“inner” in a literal sense, within me) of Kether, my own unique connection to Kether and my own unique perception of and personalization of Kether. To some, Da’at is an empty slot which can be filled by any of the other Sephiroth, but in actuality, Da’at is filled with Divine Light that is always shining. It’s just that not everyone can see this Divine Light. The concealment of this Divine Light does not happen through the workings of Da’at, but rather through my own ability to “see.” If I strive to give of myself, the Divine Light will be revealed; if I allow myself to become selfish, this Light will be hidden from me.

And if I am able to see that Divine Light, The Abyss is not a dark and frightening place.

Tonight I meet with the Pagan Brain Trust. IQ is leaving for the UK in one week, so this will be the last gathering for a few months with all four of us being face to face. I am jealous; I wish I had the ability to be footloose and fancy free for a few months, free to indulge myself and follow my heart and my mind.

I feel good. Sore from my weekend still, and a tiny bit lethargic; but good.


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Four of Pentacles/Ace of Cups. The Four of Pentacles (the Sun, the inner core of a person or situation or the deepest self, in Capricorn, “I build,” ambition, authority, caution cunning), is so very grounded.  This Four is a card of earthy power, but since both the suit and the number are so very stable, so very resistant to change or improvisation, I need to be careful that I don’t become so obsessed over details or protective of myself that I begin to stagnate.  However, sometimes the energies of this Four are positive.  After the intensity of the past week or so, I think I will benefit from the energies of this card, which are telling me to know and be aware of my physical world.  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, as well as love.   This relationship could be with others, or with myself.  Paired with that Ace of Cups, my Four of Pentacles has a more positive feel to it.

My Thoth card is the Seven of Disks reversed.  “Failure” reversed, again. The Seven of Disks (Saturn, discipline, responsibility, law and order, in Taurus, “I have,” sensual, cautious, stubborn) in an upright position tells of a heavy pause that just might be hard to counteract, due to the Earthiness of both the number 7 and the suit of Disks.  Most Tarot decks see this care as offering a bit more optimistic possibility, but Crowley sees the pause indicated in this card as presenting inertia that is difficult to overcome.  After all, Saturn is slow and restrictive, and Taurus is slow-moving and materially focused.  Eeek. Thankfully, the card is reversed, so if any stagnation appears, I should be able to wash it away pretty quickly, and the reversed energy of this card combined with the grounded energy of the Four of Pentacles just might be used in a positive way, as a sort of tether or touchstone.  This card keeps showing up reversed, and I think there is a message in that, too.  Just looking at those words “Failure reversed” tells me that at least for today, Failure is not going to be much of a consideration.

My Legacy card is the Three of Cups, flavored by the King of Wands reversed. The Three of Cups (Mercury, reason, intelligence, orderliness, communication, in Cancer, “I feel,” sensitive tenacious, nurturing, moody) tells of the possibility of experiencing emotional abundance, emotional connections to others (mainly due to things in common), and emotional support as a part of the day.  It tells of working and accomplishing things through love, which supports that Ace of Cups above. The King of Wands (cusp of Cancer, “I feel,” sensitive, nurturing, moody, and Leo, “I am,” passionate, dramatic egotistical) has a Fiery nature, particularly if you see the rank of King as corresponding with the element of Fire.  This King is not good at creating; his forte is transforming his world to match his vision. He is not good at routine and is not happy with predictability, but since he is reversed, I might stay with the predictable.

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

My horoscopes: “Reality isn't always as exciting as you'd like it to be, Sagittarius. But isn't this because you interpret reality in a particular way? You rarely look at things in detail, because fundamentally, details don't interest you. But if you look around, you will discover that the details of a truly epic event are currently unfolding before your eyes. Put some new lenses in your glasses!

And: “Someone who is relatively new to your life has more admiration for you than you might have thought. Have you noticed any lingering glances -- or any coincidental meetings that might not be so coincidental? Play this situation however you wish. If you want to drag out the drama and act like you have no idea about what's going on, feel free! But if you are ready to explore things a bit more, today is the day to meet that lingering glance and see what happens.

And: “You may find your brain buzzing around like a beehive today. This is good. There is a great deal of information that you need to process at this time. Have you been thinking about buying some new electronic equipment or small appliances for your home? Now is a great time to do a bit of research on this project before you go out and lay down your credit card. Use this day to gather facts.

My Sun reading: “It's a day of many changes under the Sagittarius Moon. Synchronously, you're in the market for variation. Venus and Pluto stimulate strong feelings tonight. You feel madly in love with your mate. If you're single, it's about the power of attraction and golden opportunities to meet someone new.

How to explain this past weekend?  I was at my second Vedic Thai Massage workshop, taught by Mukti Michael Buck of the Vedic Conservatory.  I expected this workshop to give me a chance to refine what I had learned at the same workshop last June, and I was indeed able to solidify that foundation.  But the wonderful icing on the cake of foundation is that I learned entirely new asanas, even for the most basic sequences I learned at last year’s workshop.  I did indeed bring my knowledge of Vedic Thai Bodywork to a new level.  LOL, I hope my friends and family are ready to lie down on my mat again. 

I also spoke to Mukti about the process of becoming certified to teach Vedic Thai Bodywork.  He explained the process, I purchased the DVD, and will be requesting the workbook from Mukti over the next week or so.  This is a long-term goal of mine, but first I need to get to know everything associated with Bodywork, inside and out.  This means committing myself to learning the pressure points and meridians.  I am up for this, and feel that it is a necessary next step.

I received some interesting validation from two different people this weekend, validation that I am doing something right.  Two different people at two different locations told me, without solicitation, that my energy feels both powerful and completely accepting of myself and comfortable in my own skin, in a way that is actually soothing and supporting to others.  My focus is so much on my own energy body and how it feels to me that I’ve never given thought to the way that others perceive me.  I do know and understand that first impressions are actually our inner selves reacting to the aura, the spiritual body which reaches far away from the physical body, of another person.  We may see that first impression as happening solely from the messages of our physical senses, but to me those messages are secondary and only validate the initial perception, which happens by our subconscious mind registering and interpreting the first contact with the spiritual body of another.  Interesting.

I went into this weekend hoping to find some personal answers as well.  I was expecting that the incredible and vibrant cleanse on every level and within every body would light up the correct path for me.  And yet, as I drove to Cape May on Sunday evening, even though I felt completely balanced and completely serene, there was still that part of me that felt blocked.  I didn’t feel uncomfortable about this any more, the way I had felt all of last weeks, and I can’t even call the sensation a “sensitivity” any more, because there was no longer any emotional pain associated with it, but the sensation was still there. 

It now feels like a blockage, but unfortunately I can’t put my finger on just what is being blocked.  Is there an energy meridian that is being blocked?  Is there a muscle that needs a release?  Does my Younger Self still have something to say?  Is there a physical world issue that is pressing on me?  An emotional one?  No answer.  I felt like I was reaching blindly and with trepidation under the couch for a quarter, not knowing if my fingers would touch the coin, or a mushy grape that had rolled there three weeks ago, or the spider waiting there to bite me.  Last night, I was exhausted, truly tired, both physically and emotionally, when I went to bed.  I slept deeply, and woke this morning at peace.  Oh, don’t get me wrong, the blockage was still there, but I had relaxed, I had released the last bit of angst I had about it.

And there, finally, was Danu, my dearest Patroness, with my answer: 

My dearest Daughter, you need not fear.  I am with you and within you always.  Know that there is a Purpose for this time you are in, and for these experiences you are having.  In striving to find your Purpose, in striving to press on despite no clear and articulated journey’s end, you are enabling yourself to finally pierce the Membrane between you and this current incarnation, and the Source, the All, the Highest Vibration and the Purest of Sacred Energies. 

“This is the time for which you have been preparing yourself.  Only one who has done the work and exerted the effort to reach this point will possibly succeed.  Know this as well: the choice in the end is yours.  Go forward blindly but with trust in Me, or turn back to prepare further.  There is no wrong choice as long as the choice is made in Perfect Love and Trust, Perfect Love and Trust in Me and Perfect Love and Trust in yourself.

“More than ever, this phase must be done in a solitary fashion.  Share your thoughts and experiences with others in Perfect Love and Trust, but know that those others may not truly understand what you are feeling and learning.  This does not invalidate the process; indeed, it is an indication that you are succeeding.

“So go forward, My Daughter, into the unknown, for it is in going forward blindly, without outer guideposts, that you will become sensitized to the messages of your Inner Voice.  Listen for that Voice whenever you become frightened or unsure of your next step . . . and know that the Voice you hear will be Mine.

“Also know and remember that once you succeed in piercing the Membrane, you become once again the youngest and most inexperienced of Dedicants.  Pride has no place here, nor does ego; remember The Tower.

Finally . . . serenity has returned.  Now, at last, I can face the next step, and the 18th Path.