May 25th, 2007

Madonna del "Magnificat" (detail)

Picture the Pain Spread: Card 2

I did manage to do some work on my course on psalm 119. I had to do it; it feels as if time slips as sand through my fingers (sorry for the worn out metaphor).

Today I have pulled a second card in the spread “Picture the Pain.” Yesterday I pulled my first card. Card Two is called “Awareness”. It shows an insight or a hunch, feeling or gut reaction, that will help you heal.

The card that I have pulled was Page of Swords, again from the Victorian Romantic Tarot. 


I must be brief; it is late already. I never could get the right page-of-swords feeling when I looked at the RWS image. I just did never really felt what it means. This image looks resembles the RWS image, so that is important. I was used to very fast pages of swords in the Motherpeace Tarot, and in the Robin Wood Tarot, or very different ones (from the RWS). I always felt a sort of lost when this card came up in the RWS. Happily there was someone in class who kept pulling this card, on and on and on. I take that meaning for me now, because that applies really well to my situation, and I really feel it from the inside out as well. So this helped to get a grip on the card.

The person who pulled this card so often always pulled it when he was off starting something, but had no control over the outcome (the symbol on RWS image are the birds at his head). Also very important, it was always something which he did not master yet. Funny is that he pulled it when he had decided on a certain medical treatment; almost the same situation as I am in now (that treatment worked out very well for him by the way). My hunch is that in order to heal, I must go on with the treatment I have started, not knowing very much about it and not knowing what will happen. What I find hard is that every health issue from the past can come back in this treatment, also severe psychic conditions. I already have had a taste of that, and I am not looking forward to more of it. Happily I can always call the practitioner, she knows how it can work, but I really hope it never comes to that. I would hate that. Still, regardless of these nasty effects, my feeling is to go on with it, although I am in the dark about what it has in store for me. The promise is that I will be a lot stronger in the end.
Madonna del "Magnificat" (detail)

The Window of the Heh (Psalm 119:33-40)

Every day I pull a card from the “Picture the Pain” Spread. I am still feverish, so that is still relevant. But do want post the following spread first, because it gave me an important insight that do not want to forget.

Today I worked on my course about psalm 119 and the tarot. I rewrote it and rewrote it again, and it is becoming better now. What I also did is pulling the cards for the spread of the Hierophant, belonging to the letter Heh (I don not use the Golden Dawn system here) and the verses 33-40 of Psalm 119. The questions and my answers to these in this spread are:

Card 1
What do you have to learn on your religious or spiritual path that is beneficial to you, that will gives you space and view (from the window of the Heh, the image of this letter is a window). The card that I received to this question was Five of Wands. 


There is struggle on this card. This is an internal struggle. For me it is important to learn that faith, religion and walking a spiritual path, does not mean struggle and challenges. I can relate this card to many of the readings I did in Lent, in which the questions I asked in my readings demanded highly moral behaviour of me, to which I could not live up.

Card 2
Follow in your imagination the hand of the Hierophant that points to the open space that is behind him. Then pull a card to the following question: Which view on the sacred comes into being then (by the learning on card one). I pulled the Ace of Pentacles as an answer to this question. 


On this card a woman is lying in a relaxed way on a rug nearby a warm fire. There is cradle next to her and she is plays with a young leopard. The card symbolises a gift. A physical gift. For me this one this is one of the nicest cards in the deck. This card means to me that if I let go of the idea of struggle, as well as the idea that faith is a un unbroken line of challenges, then the sacred is a gift. It is the gift of relaxation and a feeling of profound safety and well-being.
Madonna del "Magnificat" (detail)

Picture the Pain Spread: Card 3

Still feverish, higher than other days, coughed less today. As the third card in the “Picture the Pain” spread by Christine Jette, from her book Tarot for the Healing Heart, I have pulled Six of Pentacles from the Victorian Romantic Tarot. The card symbolizes called unconscious hopes and fears, issues I am vaguely aware of. The card represents a block that has hindered my flow of energy. 


This version of the Six of Pentacles emphasizes charity. It is wonderful how Karen Mahony adapts her interpretations of these cards to the Victorian age, all the while still keeping the meaning of the card in the range of possible meanings. Many poor people were dependent on charity in those times, and she addresses that theme extensive in the essay of the card. The little girl on the card sells flowers; the woman buys a little bouquet of the girl. She does this for charity, but does so very stiffly, and without a smile.

Firstly, I think this card tells me I need to share my feelings, my fears. But that really is something I know already. Still it is important. Secondly, I think that the needy, intense looking girl, and the stiff woman who does not laugh, are separated in myself. I cannot give what I am going to say hands and feet, but my feeling is that the little one needs to be placed into the grown-up, so the grown up loosens up a bit and becomes softer by the openness and sadness of the litte girl. The vulnerable little girl is more protected that way. Balance is the result of that.