Thursday, February 2, 2012

Eight of Swords/Ten of Wands reversed.  The Eight of Swords (Jupiter, expansiveness and growth, justice, fortune, in Gemini, “I think,” curious, sociable talkative, dual) tells of confusion and restriction, of being stymied by obstacles.  The sense of powerlessness associated with this card comes from within, though, and those obstacles are most likely not as bad as they seem.  The Ten of Wands (Saturn, discipline, responsibility, limitations and resistance, in Sagittarius, “I seek,” philosophic, fun-loving, blundering) is a card which tells of being taxed to the limit, or at least, tells us we believe we are taxed to the limit.  Another card of perception, and I had better be very suspect of my judgments and decisions today.

My Thoth card is the Four of Swords.  “Truce,” The Four of Swords (Jupiter, expansiveness and growth, justice, fortune, in Libra, “We are,” partnerships, balance, cooperation) tells of the need for a truce or some time of rest and recuperation.  One possible instruction offered by the Four of Swords is to take a bit of time to think, or to stand back from a situation in order to get a new perspective.  There is that word again!

My Legacy card is the Eight of Coins (another 8!), flavored by the Ten of Cups.  The Eight of Coins (Sun, the inner core of a person or situation, in Virgo, “I serve,” practical, analytical, sensible, orderly) is about taking care of details, working hard, and studying or learning new things.  No perceptions here, just hard facts.  Of course, it is an 8 card, so it is active, but this is more slow, steady and predictable action. The Ten of Cups (Mars, action, spontaneity, aggression, drive, in Pisces, “I believe,” feeling, duality, spirituality, suffering and growth) offers the manifestation of happiness and fulfillment. The blessings offered here could be the carrot, and if I judge carefully and pay attention to details, they will be mine.
My Pearls of Wisdom Imbolc card is the Queen of Cups.  The Queen of Cups (cusp of Gemini, “I think,” curious, sociable, dual, and Cancer, “I feel,” sensitive, tenacious, nurturing, moody) represents the energies of The High Priestess manifested into the Minor Arcana.  The Pearls of Wisdom Queen of Cups is telling me not to trust perceptions but rather, to trust my emotional reactions and my intuition. 

My 6-digit date number is 7, the number that tells of the pause at the end of growth and the beginning of degeneration, and usually presents a crossroad or decision. 

My horoscopes: “Have you been looking to branch out in a new direction, Sagittarius? If so, this could be the day you get the lead of a lifetime. Or you might receive some unexpected information indicating possible new sources of income that you could pursue on your own. Whatever they are, new doors of opportunity are going to open for you that could make a big difference in your lifestyle and catapult you into a higher socioeconomic bracket. Make the most of it!”

And: “Feed your mind today. While you no doubt enjoy being active and social, chances are you get bored fairly quick as well. This is common for a Sagittarian and you'll need to give yourself a constant supply of intriguing and fresh material to feel your best. Explore a subject that's been something you've thought of as interesting or learn a new hobby. Stimulate your mind and your body will also become more energetic. Use the Internet if you can't get away.”

My Shadowscapes Insight is the Nine of Pentacles.  Today is the sixth time this card has appeared for me since the first of the year; there have not even been six weeks yet in 2012!  Generally, this card presents two concepts: really focusing on discipline, and the opportunity to enjoy bounty that is well-deserved.  It is through this enjoyment that I will connect to my physical senses, and then in turn to the non-physical world of spirit.

Pagans of all traditions will be celebrating the Sabbat of Imbolc either yesterday or today.  Imbolc is usually celebrated on February 1 or 2nd in the northern hemisphere, and August 1 or 2nd in the southern hemisphere.  Some Pagans time this celebration to the solar midpoint between the winter solstice and spring equinox, or cross-quarter.  Many Pagans base their Imbolc celebrations on traditional lore and customs derived from the historically documented medieval Irish texts.  Some celebrate the festival when the first stirrings of spring are felt, or on the full moon that falls closest to this time.  Imbolc is especially a time of honoring the Goddess Brighid, and many of Her dedicants choose this time of year for rituals to her.

Wiccans celebrate a variation of Imbolc as one of four “fire festivals” which make up half of the eight holidays (or “Sabbats”), of the wheel of the year.  Imbolc is defined as a cross-quarter day, midway between the winter solstice (Yule) and the spring equinox (Ostara).  The precise astrological midpoint in the Northern hemisphere is when the sun reaches fifteen degrees of Aquarius (in the Southern hemisphere, if celebrated as the beginning of local Spring, the date is the midpoint of Leo). The lighting of candles and fires on Imbolc is seen as a form of sympathetic magick that helps bring the return of warmth and the increasing power of the Sun over the coming months.

Imbolc is said to be the day the Cailleach (the hag of Gaelic tradition) gathers her firewood for the rest of the winter. Legend has it that if She intends to make the winter last a good while longer, She will make sure the weather on Imbolc is bright and sunny, so She can gather plenty of firewood. Therefore, people are generally relieved if Imbolc is a day of foul weather, as it means the Cailleach is asleep and winter is almost over.  On the Isle of Man, where She is known as Caillagh ny Groamagh, the Cailleach is said to have been seen on Imbolc in the form of a gigantic bird, carrying sticks in Her beak.

My Coven, Sacred Mists, held its Sabbat celebration yesterday.  After the ritual, the SMPDA offered divination readings, which stretched out the celebration nicely.  Tonight, I will be focusing on getting accustomed to my new duties as a Third Degree Dedicant, related to my chosen Path of Teacher.  And, I am getting accustomed to my new hours, and to working for a few hours each day for my husband.  So far, so good with that!

The brightest of Imbolc blessings!


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