My Thoth card is the Five of Wands. “Strife” is Crowley’s keyword for the Five of Wands, which corresponds with Saturn (discipline, responsibility, law and order) in Leo (“I am, passionate, dramatic, egotistical), and indicates a struggle caused by cross purposes. The cool thing is that the inconveniences of this card are not necessarily evil, just uncomfortable, and they can actually represent growing pains!
My Legacy card is the Ace of Coins reversed, flavored by The Wheel. The Aces present potential only, unmanifested, and the Ace of Coins (Aries, “I want,” action oriented, assertive, competitive, Taurus, “I have,” sensual, cautious, stubborn, and Gemini, “I think,” curious, talkative, dual, social) tells of the presence of potential that is connected in some way to the physical world of Earth (cold/binds and dry/shapes; stable, material and practical energy that is slow to change). This Ace represents prosperity, security, stability, trust and a connection to Nature, and since it is reversed, there may be some difficulty with manifestations or connections to any of these. The Wheel of Fortune (Fire (hot/separates and dry/shapes, and spontaneous, impulsive and energetic change), Jupiter (expansiveness and growth, justice, fortune), Kaph (grasping hand), and the Path between Netzach (the stimulating factors of emotion and inspiration) and Chesed (the place where forms and structure are stabilized and nurtured)), tells of destiny and fate and their ebbs and flows, and their effects on our lives, and it is flavoring my reversed Ace of Coins. Actually, this is not half bad; I am being told that the blockages are not necessarily being caused by anything I’ve said or done, but rather by outside influences. This means that if I can find a way to perceive the energy flows and then tap into them, I can ride the wave!
My 6-digit date number is 9, the completeness of manifestation and experience.
My horoscopes: “If things begin to stir, change, or fluctuate in love and romance, your first impulse is to overreact. This is probably the opposite of what you should do. Instead of quickly jumping to conclusions, you should sit back and let things slowly unfold. Resist the urge to make a move today just because your emotions are in an uproar.”
And: “Today may be a rough day for you, in which you may find it hard for you to make a decision about anything. Refrain from making any major moves regarding finances or real estate. Concentrate on yourself and the answers will come to you from within. Be realistic and practical when it comes to your emotions. You may find it hard to connect with someone tonight, so stick close to home and focus inward.”
And my new one: “The irrepressible Sun-Uranus trine sends shockwaves of change through your life. Others may not fully approve of your need to shake things up because they only see what's working well. Meanwhile, your inner restlessness won't go away until you do something about it. Embracing an uncertain future is a good idea, but don't sacrifice your convictions for the sake of being flexible.”
My Shadowscapes Insight is regarding the Six of Pentacles. Wow, all of the cards today seem to be honing in on my day! This card is asking me to look at circumstances very carefully, for even if I feel that I am the one doing without, I could in actuality possess riches beyond imagining. And those who feel as if they have it all may actually lack one necessary piece of the puzzle.
Circumstances of late have made me pause and think about such concepts as “authority” and “leadership” and “ethics.” It seems to me that so many people live their lives solely focused on their own destination, without realizing that there are other travelers on the road in front of, behind, and next to them. They chuck their trash out the window without a care for their surroundings, and the swerve and dart through traffic assuming that everyone else will get out of their way. And if those fellow travelers don’t move out of their way fast enough? They lean on their horns, and bitch, moan and pound on their steering wheels. And I mean this both literally and figuratively.
Is this what humanity has evolved into?
Whenever we interact with others, we are perceived as being a leader or a figure of authority, at least part of the time. I’m not only talking about conversations that happen in a teacher/student kind of situation; even a casual conversation between good friends contains moments when one of those friends is being looked to as an authority, and moments when that same friend is looking to the other for authority. Even if that conversation is silly in nature, and just about having fun.
Our words and our demeanor greatly affect how others perceive us. We’ve all seen this kind of thing, where a homeless person presents herself with quiet dignity despite her situation, while political leaders act like buffoons and morons. Why is it so hard for so many to put themselves even for a moment into the shoes of another?
I have been trying in my spare time (*snort* what is “spare time” again?) to search for and read some advanced Wiccan books. Believe me, they are not always easy to find, but I think, thanks to the built in discount provided by my new Kindle Touch and eBooks, I’ve stumbled upon one that is useful to me right now. It is called “Advanced Wiccan Spirituality, Volume 1: Revitalizing The Roots And Foundations” by Kevin Saunders. In the chapter discussing initiation and third degree training, Saunders addresses the concepts of authority, leadership and ethics in a way that truly resonates for me. And the way Saunders presents things, these dangers of delusions of authority are a greater risk for the more advanced dedicant!
“There will be many cases from [a more advanced] level that get stuck at a deep emotional level which will be displayed as one of the self-deluding glamours. At each state of development it is easy to conclude, due to the vast opening of energies previously not experienced, that the person has reached the pinnacle of development; this is the seed that develops into delusion.” And “The glamour of being a third degree High Priestess or High Priest is a compelling one for those suffering from illusions of grandeur on the physical, emotional and/or mental planes. To serve the Goddess and God we need to be humble, knowing that we are but a tiny cog in a very big machine. We need to appreciate the seriousness of the role we are to perform. We need to be willing to serve the Goddess and God for their own sakes and not our own, with all the sacrifice it entails. Until the illusions on the physical, emotional and mental levels within the individual have broken down and the initiate is ready to serve in any way the gods choose to use us, from a spiritual perspective, then we are not truly ready for the third degree initiation and any ritual undertaken will be meaningless and cause problems for others.”
“By working as a third degree we will be looked upon for inspiration and as an example.” “The initiate will learn to stand in the light and dim the fires of the lower self.” And “[The third degree dedicant] is now working for the needs of the group and has an unselfish outlook . . . .”
Again and again, the importance of being humble, of serving others, and of remembering that we are not the source of all wisdom, the keeper of the only way, or the person with the one correct answer for everyone. These are difficult and sometimes painful realizations to have, but we must strive to have them, again and again.
I believe that this manner of interacting easily carries over into my mundane world. Indeed, as a third degree Dedicant, I should be living my Craft always, not just when I am in ritual or performing magickal workings or interacting with Coven-mates or like-minded people. So this manner of interacting must carry over into my mundane world. And it needs to apply to every circumstance, not just the big ones or the important ones, or the ones where I am offering guidance to another or receiving guidance from another.
I am a healer, a teacher, a student, a Tarot reader, a Vedic Thai-Yoga Bodyworker, a Reiki Master, and a Wiccan, not through some special make-up of my mind or talent of my body, not through some marvelous accomplishment or creation, and not through my own intelligence or wisdom. I am all of these things because someone else has already been these things, because someone else has done the work and traveled the Well-Worn Path ahead of me and then taken the time and expended the effort to look back and encourage me.
I have studied and practiced for years; this means that I have authority, that I am a leader. Others look to me, and I open myself to the needs of others for this is why I have studied and practiced. But in the end, if I do not exercise my authority in an ethical manner, and if I do not lead with a care for where I step and who is following me, I have wasted my efforts. As a third degree dedicant, I must exist to serve. This service is not to be done as a doormat; rather it is to be offered through wisdom attained via years of studies and love offered through walking in others’ shoes. And I must always remember that without the assistance of those who went before me, I would not be where I am right now.