5 February 19: The Moon & The Star & The Hanged Man

Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. The Moon can be an ominous card. If I were a dog or a a wolf, both seen on this card, #18 of the Major Arcana, baying and howling at a massive supermoon, eerily pale against the indigo sky and framed by 2 dark, stone towers, I’d be scared, too. The Moon looks loud, the howling animals are loud:

What the hell is it?

I don’t know!

The Moon, in the past position next to the Star in the present looks like the same picture, like a panorama. In the moonlight a little purple crawfish crawls up to the shore as if being called, the way fish beach themselves to spawn under a full moon. How do animals know that stuff? They have some kind of inner ‘thing’. The crawfish looks like he’s about to crawl out and up to a road that leads through the barking animals and dark towers over the distance hills and straight up to the moon, but he doesn’t come all the way up out of the water – ’cause he doesn’t know what that thing is either. I can’t resist, he says, but..what if it’s just a pile of rocks up close? The little purple one is the only one really  ‘in tune’ on this card, which in the past position reminds me of my favorite Disneyland ride, Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. Strapped into a little Model T, you careened around in crazy foglights in the dark as things popped out in front of you, above you, behind you, and it was all very weird and surreal and you can’t tell what the hell’s going on then it’s over. This is that. Sort of. Juvenile delinquents (ahem) would jump out of the cars, sneak around in the dark and mess with stuff and then jump back on, but they got wise to that a long time ago and now have people hiding in the dark and watching. This is the fine line between visions & illusions, illusions & delusions, intuition, animal instincts and ‘full moon madness’. Glad to see it in the past.

In the center, the nude woman under the stars seems to be drawing water from the same pond – she says nothing, but appears to be listening to something: a glowing 7 pointed star shining down on her as she draws and pours, from the past to the future positions.

This is serious stuff – all 3 of these cards are Major League Arcana, and all three address the subconscious. The past and the present merge, and the naked woman always reminds me of the character in the Lars Von Trier film “Melancholia” who lays naked on a grassy bank at night by a stream, offering herself to the approaching mysterious planet Melancholia, whose effects she subconsciously feels before anyone else does. The Moon and the Star are also all about stage, theatre, music, singing, and ‘the land of light and shadow’ which it is said is the Native name for what is now Hollywood, which I can’t swear is true but would make sense. The Star is a healing card, and if all these cards have one thing in common, it’s about seeing, or even hearing things in a way others do not. These cards are all upright, suggesting to me that listening to and trusting your subconscious, instinct, intuition or however you feel it, has served you well. This woman may seem a little ‘spacey’ to onlookers but does have one foot planted solidly on dry land.

In the future position is the legendary Hanged Man, calmly hanging from a scaffold of his own making, in a deep meditative trance. The thing that immediately jumps out to me today is the same deep, nocturnal blue on all 3 cards: the deep night of the Moon, the starry night sky of the Star, and just a patch of it on the Hanged Man. A big bank of clouds rolling in, it’s almost as if he hopped up there to avoid the fog – master of dreams, visions, illusions and collector of funhouse mirrors Neptune rules this card, also a card of escape via drugs or alcohol – Neptune likes a drink.

What I like about this card is also something that could be a warning. I like that he has ‘one foot’ in the patch of blue sky, the same blue sky as on the Sun and the Moon, and if there is a message, this is that. It is that same instinct and following your own path that got you through the confusion and chaos in the past – being in touch with your own inner voice. This human sees things ‘from a different point of view’.  Like the Star, this is a card of healing, restoration, wholeness and health.

Looks like a possible ‘dust up’ in the future, from what I can see judging from the wall of incoming clouds. Some kind of ‘weather’ may be blowing in and I like the way he’s handling it, calmly detached, making sure to keep that one foot – instead of on the ground, since that seems to be where that nasty exhaust is coming from – firmly in that clear patch of blue, where he or she can stay in touch with that ‘higher’ or ‘inner’ voice – like the Moon and the crawfish.

The exhaust is probably coming from a careening Model T, and, like the painted wooden mole and frog and mice and all the other terrified characters on the wild ride, he’s jumped up out-of-the-way, staying clear until the dust settles, but when he drops, he drops: 12= 1+2=3, the mighty number of Creation.

Upright, this is a period of going deep, reflection, healing, and the re-balancing of spiritual and earthly priorities, but above all (excellent pun!) staying in touch with one’s inner voice, which is the higher voice.

‘Surrendering’ to higher powers, plain and simple.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

31 January 19: The Hanged Man & Six of Coins reversed & The High Priestess, reversed.

Oversharing. Or undersharing. We are not in a very giving mood, for whatever reason, but it may be a good one. Reason, not mood.

We have 2 Major Arcana today escorting down the center aisle the reversed 6 of Coins or Pentacles aka the 6 of Earth representing all that is physical, material and tangible. Our money, bodies, and earthly efforts and endeavors.. On the card, a well-groomed gentleman, scales in hand, weighs out and dispenses coins to a pair of beggars. Charity given and received is  one of the meanings of this card, but since the suit also rules our bodies, and with the Hanged Man and High Priestess on either side in the past and future positions being related in a an esoteric sort of way, for entertainment purposes only I will entertain the idea of checking out what this may mean were it to be related to health, which should be entertaining. We’ve given quite enough of ourselves, it seems, and may need to hold back a little.

Or a lot.

In the past position, the Hanged Man has basically decided to let the Universe work itself out, which is, sometimes, the only thing we can do. For whatever reason, a period of withdrawal and detachment was the only option. ‘Hanging by a thread’ is the phrase that comes to mind today seeing this man, hanging by his one foot, his legs crossed and forming the number ‘4’ reversed, which suggests to me a certain instability. This card, ruled by the wavy water-God Neptune can talk about drugs, alcohol and all things hallucinogenic – now a ‘hangup’ of the past – if, of course, we’re vigilant. The 6 of Coins  sometimes suggests someone dispensing medication, and reversed, this could be weaning off meds or even being given the wrong kind. Inaction was the only ‘action’ we could take at the time. Giving in and giving it up.

The High Priestess, keeper of secrets (Virgo & the Moon) in the future position is reversed. Representing our ever-present intuition, we may not listen when we should and hear ourselves saying ‘I knew I shouldn’t have trusted that so and so’ later. I hate to say it, but she could be a bad shrink, counselor or advisor – trust your own self.

However, you were, perhaps, in the past in no shape to discern who around you was trustworthy or not. Someone certainly isn’t or wasn’t who they claimed to be,  doesn’t have your best interest at heart, and never did. Your gut tells you this but you just don’t want to know. Ok, fine, says the High Priestess. Use me or lose me. As long as you keep your money in your pocket. By the way, she also rules all women’s things, and would like you to get your hormones and thyroid checked out.

The 6 of Coins reversed could very well mean someone does have their hand in your pocket, or strongly advises you to take your own damn hand out of your pocket before you give all your money away to ‘hangers on’ – possibly one specific person with a whole lot of water in their chart and or a whole lot of ‘hangups’.

The balance here to be achieved is between not giving enough of ourselves and giving too much. Your spidey-sense may be off for a bit: best to not believe every ‘charity case’ that comes along. There is an overall sense of dishonesty around these cards. Ruled by the moon, and we have a full moon in Virgo coming up I do believe, the moonlight is lovely but the harsh light of day may prove someone you trusted -shock and horror – turned out to be someone you shouldn’t have.

You knew it, too.

If you feel it, don’t ignore it.

6 December 18: Queen of Wands & King of Cups reversed

Losing their grip. We have a situation, and I’m quite sure it’s a situation we’d rather not be in or deal with but here we have it and it involves a very troubled human.

Fire and water, what can I say. The sunny, outgoing Queen of Wands is of the suit of Fire (Aries/Sagittarius/Leo) and is the ultimate survivor. She’s seen it all, pretty much, which is why she’s so warm and funny and entertaining – the comedienne with the dark past, hinted at by the mysterious black cat at her feet on the more traditional images. A wand is a wand, after all – she does have that transformative ability, that aura of theatre and magic. It is the way of theatre folk, you see, in this business we call ‘show’ to suspend reality, take people’s thoughts away from their problems and pains if just for a little while. It is a valuable contribution. During war, depression and disaster – entertainment thrives.

The King of Cups is of the suit of Water (Cancer/Pisces/Scorpio) and operates from the t. Emotion and instinct make him who he is, a tender-hearted, forgiving, compassionate King. Artistic and musical himself, I would ordinarily say this pair has some serious potential: fire & water = steam, and we like steamed lattes and veggies and creases on our pants, but a steam burn hurts like a bitch.

I’m glad this Queen is looking after this King today, who I’ll give the benefit of the doubt and just say he’s having a very hard slide – possibly and probably alcohol, but drinking is only a symptom –  what’s really going on? Insecurity regarding masculinity or sexuality may be the cause of his confusion or depression, something he doesn’t seem to be able to identify or express. He’s all churned up and all over the place. He may be ‘in over his head’ emotionally, and now, just doesn’t want to deal with it, and looks to escape any way he can – sex, drugs, lies, and he may even have to pawn that crown soon.

Ah, yes. The dreamy King of Cups. In this desperate state he could sell ice cubes to Eskimos and charm the snakes out of the trees. But, this Queen – she’s not buying it. Not at all.  She saves her compassion for those who really need it, not this sorry mess. She’s not even looking his way. He’s a grown-ass man with plenty of resources. The world isn’t just his oyster, he owns all the oysters.

There is some Mars-Neptune weirdness happening so I think the possibility of a ‘steam burn’ is pretty strong right now. I’m reassured by her presence – she looks straight ahead, unflinchingly, and will not be brought down.

But perhaps she’s the only one he can open up to, which is good – she’s been through much worse, and she knows the cure for what ails him.

Tough love.

 

 

 

5 December 18: The Hanged Man & Queen of Cups

Grok. This pair I’ve so seldom seen I cruised a few of my many online sources for some fresh info. Tarot Verbatim (excellent site) used the fictional word ‘grok’ to describe the relationship between this psychic pair, citing legendary Sci-Fi author and major early influence (he used to roller-skate on Hollywood Boulevard when he was kid, too) Ray Bradbury as the inventor of the word, but in fact it was another genius, author Robert Heinlein.

This relationship is so rare and indescribable that Heinlein had to adopt a word from the Martian language to describe it: Grok, meaning, the assumption of a singular reality.

I am you, you are me. I see through your eyes, hear with your ears. We don’t need to talk. We meet in dreams. She gets me, says the Hanged Man, who has been hanging there for a long time in surrender, waiting for a sign.

The psychic Queen of Cups is sending and receiving telepathic signals herself. She looks up from her gold cup as if she’s hearing her name being called or whispered from the large, pale shell held up to her ear. She hears many things the rest of us don’t, but then again, we don’t often ‘tune in’ to listen. She’s standing by the vast, blue, ocean – the water behind her not still, but not choppy either – just little waves. It’s all about waves: sound, light, everything comes in waves. She knows this, and probably surfs.

The Hanged Man has found his high, quiet place in which to meditate and ‘tune in’ himself, far above the fray and madness. What sacrifices is he or she willing to make for this relationship, or any relationship? He seems to be meditating on the question. What does this mean? Is he sacrificing a romantic relationship altogether for some ‘higher calling’? This relationship is the higher calling, and worth any sacrifice.

The Hanged Man is a creative or an artist of some kind, a musician, a writer, who by nature, is forever seeking divine inspiration.  Indeed he could be sacrificing this relationship for his art or work, his ‘higher calling’, but only temporarily.  Neptune and Pisces influence this Hanged Man and all things dreamy, watery and of the subconscious, which is why this man hangs upside down. He wants to hear the Source above the white noise of the world – and his Source seems to be this Queen.

If he didn’t believe before, he does now. Here’s the Wikipedia definition:

Grokmeans to understand so thoroughly that the observer becomes a part of the observed—to merge, blend, intermarry, lose identity in group experience. It means almost everything that we mean by religion, philosophy, and science and it means as little to us as color does to a blind man.”

Obviously this relationship is worth any ‘sacrifice’.

How often do you really grok with someone?

13 November 18: The Hanged Man & Five of Swords

Someone’s screwing with you. So what. In the grand scheme of things is this really any  big deal, or is it just what it is, or who it is? What can they really do to you anyway? Just keep ‘an eye’ on them.

Th Hanged Man is of the Major Arcana, and is not about a noose and gallows but a human voluntarily hanging gracefully from one foot with one leg bent in a Yoga-like pose (Sirsasana, believed to stimulate the brain) with both hands clasped behind his back. He usually hangs from a lovely, shady tree, but on the Morgan-Greer card he has built his own rig from a couple of telephone-pole like trimmed trees (we see that portal, the #11 again) with a pole laid across from which he dangles, so he has created this position for himself. He is in meditation, going within, as did the Norse God Odin, the God of wisdom, poetry, war, death, divination, and magic. Sacrificing an eye, because he has 2 and what the hell why not, he got it, but only after spending 9 days and nights upside down twisting in the wind. When he came down, he’d been gifted with arcane knowledge and the Nordic system of divination, the Runes, and the answers he’d sacrificed so much for. If anybody needed Runes it would  certainly be someone with as much potential for conflict of interest as the great, one-eyed, multi-tasking Odin, Thor’s Dad.

This is a card of seeing things from another angle. Hmmm.

The bitchy, petty, nasty 5 of Swords (Libra/Gemini/Aquarius), being a 5, will never be happy unless he or she is in some sort of conflict with someone and they usually are. We see 3 humans on a beach having just finished a fight. 2 humans have tossed down their swords and are walking off into the sunset as one snickering, sly figure in a dark hoodie watches them retreat and gloats over his having ‘won’. We don’t see his face, only his rather sinister smile. He’s behind the scenes, lurking in the shadows. His hands are full with his own 3 swords, he can’t even hold those that have been surrendered and lie on the beach. Why, then, is he doing this? This is a card of defeat, he hasn’t ‘won’ anything. The dropped swords form a cross…keep this vampire away, already.

This strange pair can be read a couple of ways: someone needs to take the high road because someone else wants to fight or won’t leave you alone and it’s annoying and ‘hangs you up’ but whatever, it’s only a 5. You’re all chill hanging in your tree with your mind on other things.

As Odin sacrificed an eye, life is all about sacrifices. We make them every day. We need to give something up in order to get something else. Often sacrifice is the first step to compromise, but someone needs to let someone or something go that maybe seemed  to make sense at the time, but from this new angle, doesn’t.

On the other hand, time spent ‘upside down’ or in a ‘stuck’ or ‘hamstrung’ state – possibly due to another’s manipulations –  requires us to look at the world from a different angle and from a different point of view. Neptune, the ruler of this card, brings profound dreams, visions and inspiration – but also foggy lenses. Not everyone is out to get you or screw with you, not everyone is a stalker, not everyone is even looking up at your tree, you know? They can’t touch you up there. But when you come down oh, you learned so much from this, did you not?

As Odin sacrificed an eye, life is all about sacrifices. We make them every day. We make sacrifices for love, art, causes close to our hearts. We need to give something up in order to get something else. Sacrifice is the first step leading to compromise, and something needs to be let go, something that seemed to make sense at the time and probably and possibly for a very long time but from this new angle, doesn’t.

Enlightenment.

Bless your ‘enemies’.

I just got a newsflash about the election results in Georgia here in the US:

Contested results, so we’re all ‘hung up’ while we get another set of eyes – another POV – and a recount. This is that, too.

 

 

 

 

 

 

9 October 18: The Hanged Man

Hamstrung. This is one of the weirdest cards to me, Number 12 of the Major Arcana, The Hanged Man. A human hangs upside down from a tree by a bit of rope tied to one ankle. There is a lot of mythology in the tree alone, linking heaven to the Underworld, but on the Morgan-Greer image it is not a tree but a scaffolding made from two dead trees with a pole stretched between them from which he hangs gracefully. He may have even built the structure himself. His face is serene, and he holds his hands clasped behind his back, one knee bent forming a triangle shape with his legs. Aerial yoga. He’s simply looking at the world from another point of view. Yogis assume the Sarasana pose – standing on your head – when they want to see the world from a different point of view  and stimulate the brain.

From above, he looks right side up. This is a card of surrender, no doubt, to a higher power which could be God or the Universe or the weather, but it’s as if the rope were a puppet string controlled by an unseen hand from above and we’re not in control right now. This card is unique in that when the card is right side up our human is upside down, meaning that’s exactly where he’s supposed to be at this juncture. To everyone else it looks pretty strange but this ‘suspension’ is necessary right now.

Neptune, the Patron Saint of the Hanged Man, loves all things foggy and weird and wobbly and wavy and misty and mystic, like the gray wall of fog we see behind the hanging man. Neptune also loves art and music, and this dedicated and passionate (the red pants give him away) artist is sacrificing all for his art. When he finally does come back down he will have created (1+2=3, the number of Creation) something divinely inspired, as did the Norse God Odin, who after having hung himself upside down for nine nights in the World Tree, the one that grew up from the center of the flat Earth, was granted the wisdom to create the Runes.

This is basically being ‘hamstrung’ for some reason, sometimes even literally. An accident victim in traction who came out of his coma declaring he’d had a revelation and was never the same, it changed his life. That’s obviously an extreme example, but the epiphany is the same. The Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, an invalid for much of her life, affixed a mirror to the canopy of her sickbed and created her beautiful and complicated self-portraits, considered some of the world’s greatest works of art.

This is delay, but a productive one in some way. Worth the wait, worth the ‘hangup.’ Be patient. This isn’t the time to move, that’s all. You may be having to wait on something or someone else before you can do much of anything anyway.

Or, a psychologist is giving you another perspective on your own ‘hangups’.

Which is Major.

 

 

 

 

2 Aug 2018: Strength

 Card of the Month as in Please Give Us. I actually drew this card on the 25th of June, but before I could write about it my long-suffering 2012 Macbook Pro finally, after the latest OS update, heaved and died. I’m afraid there was no more we could do. I’m glad the old girl is free from pain. Her missing-teeth broken keys, her revving and grinding too loud to record anything for months anyway,  her heating up the whole damn house, she just couldn’t take one more f****** update. RIP, we had a good run.

Sun and Moon in Virgo, of course I’m backed up.

Although I haven’t in a long time, on a good night I shoot a mean game of pool, or billiards, if you like. Many years as a touring musician with no money and a lot of downtime in between soundcheck and doors gave me many opportunities to work on my eye-hand coordination and win many free beers.

I imagine the current clusterf*** that is our solar system as planets on a pool table. Call it barroom astrology if you want, but sometimes you have a sweet angle and it’s all symmetrical and a straight bank into the pocket you CALLED, and sometimes you look down and shake your head at the antipodal orbs and the vast green space between them and realize there’s nothing you can do but point and shoot and hope for the best, and if the planets align, maybe sink a lucky shot (you didn’t call the pocket but what the hell, we’re friends, nice one).

But when the opposing planets (solids) get in the way of the happy planets (stripes) we have all kinds of problems, all kinds of weird angles, all kinds of potential to sink the wrong ball or make an ill-considered, wild shot, lose the 8 or the cue, and the game altogether.

Simmer down.

So it’s been a week of updating and going through old files on the old 2011 Acer, and the rest seems to have done her good. Quiet, cool, and only 1 key missing.

If there’s anything more appropriate for a Mercury/Mars retrograde, this is it…and it’s actually been very inspiring. A couple of old programs I miss, and of course bits and pieces of things started or forgotten – some worth dusting off, some not.

Strength is a patient, quiet card, and very Leo, whose hot, sunny influence we’re under right now (more fire, anyone?). But this is all about controlling fire. We see a woman who just to  look at could lower your body temperature, she’s so cool. Her expression is calm and she wears fresh flowers in her hair and a gracefully flowing gown as she somehow manages to easily tame a potentially dangerous lion seated beside her, gently closing its snarling jaws. Soothing voice, soothing hands. Even her surroundings are ‘cool’: palm trees, green mountains (Morgan-Greer).

Those familiar with the Cards of Destiny (Robert Camp) which is a system I refer to in a lot of readings recognize the 52 days before your bEarthDay as the Neptune period, influenced by that oceanic God of everything watery, dreamy and foggy. I love this period of my year as it does coincide with the surreal, foggy monsoons, and except for the potential element of illusion or deception (try not to sign anything legal until Neptune takes off your rose-colored glasses after your b-day) I love ‘diving in’ until then.

And so I shall.

This retrograde is perfect for what I need to do right now, seriously finish up work by Fall. Since you’re probably going to feel like you’re slogging through mud anyway, may as well re-do, re-build, re-sort, re-think, re-lax, re-read, re-visit, re-write, re-do.

 

Re-hearse.