Opening up to what you have within and bringing it out
Also continuing our journey through the majors and including a small piece of tarot history
To continue our walk through the majors, the next card after the Fool is the card that I feel the closest connection to out of all of them, the Magician. This card is also sometimes known as the Juggler, implying a connection between magic and performing arts or illusionism. The Magician is frequently shown holding a wand aloft,representing the Will, with an infinity symbol hovering over his head, representing a direct connection with the divine, whether as an external source of divine power or as a manifestation of internal divinity. In front of him we see a selection of tools, typically four in number, which represent the four elemental suits of the tarot. As such, the Magician draws on the power of the suits to manifest his Will. The Magician represents power, skill, knowledge, and creativity. He sees the world itself as magical and draws on everything in it to manifest his will. The darker side of the Magician manifests in his role as a trickster and manipulator, representing the illusionist side of the figure.
On to this week's reading...
For this reading, I am using the Rider-Waite-Smith deck, whose classic imagery, created by Pamela Coleman Smith, set the standard for most modern decks. Ms Smith herself was a fascinating woman of Jamaican descent who also did work for William Butler Yeats and Bram Stoker, and worked with the women's suffrage movement in England as well.
The first card is the Universe. This position represents the big picture, everything involved with the question. Here we have one of the more ominous cards in the deck, the Ten of Swords. The typical image for this is a body laying face down with ten swords sticking out of it. It can be read in a way similar to the Death card, as the end of something old to make way for a transformation but one can also see it as detachment, slaying emotions and mundane concerns to turn inwards towards a deeper level of thought, grasping less concrete, more "pure" ideas.
The second card represents the point of view of the person that the reading is for. Here, oddly enough, we have another ten, the Ten of Pentacles. This card represents wealth, security, and abundance, typically attained through harnessing some force towards that end. This does not necessarily equate with money, wealth and abundance can also mean the possession of things that one wants in one's life, material or immaterial. There may also be a note of misuse of one's wealth, or possessiveness, depending on other factors. We'll see if this plays a role in light of the rest of the reading.
The third card is the meeting of the first two, and here we have The Star. This card represents guidance, perhaps seen as external guidance but more coming from within.It also implies a state of openness and hope, coming from said guidance. I can definitely see this as related to the first card in particular.
The fourth card in the spread represents active influences on the situation, and here we have Strength. This of course does not just mean physical strength, but inner strength, strength of character, willpower, and related ideas. The implication here is a harnessing of forces towards one's ends, something also touched on in the second card, the Ten of Pentacles. The harnessing also may not necessarily mean the application of brute force, it also also mean more subtle and/or gentle tactics.
The fifth card, representing passive influences, is the Knight of Pentacles. The Knights represent the most active of the court cards, and the Knight of Pentacles represents action within a structure, with an implied dedication to an ideal spurring the action. The Knight forges on, regardless of how the outcome may look. My initial impression here is to connect this with the effort of harnessing forces implied in the second and fourth cards, the Ten of Pentacles and Strength, respectively.
The sixth card represents the Current, where things are headed or how they can easily be directed. Here we find the Page of Cups, the most mutable of court cards in the most watery of suits. Imagination and dreams play a role here, with the idea of allowing such things to just rise up on their own, being open to them without interference or judgement. This may relate to the idea of turning inwards in the first card, grasping less concrete, more "pure" ideas, aligning the Universe of the spread with the Current of it.
The seventh card is the comment card, a position where ideas relevant to the spread that may be overlooked or not immediately obvious are pointed out. In this position we find the Seven of Wands. This card represents quietness, contemplation, and discipline, with the implication of directing these to honing an ability. The turning inward definitely relates to the first card in the spread,and this may also connect with the means of harnessing strength in the fourth card.
The Eighth card represents the Will, or its means of manifestation. The Will in this sense serves as the source of one's drives, inclinations, and everything that derives from one's truest self. Here we have the Ace of Cups, the source card for the suit of Cups, which represent emotions,dreams, intuition, the subconscious and related concepts. Given the trend shown in several of the earlier cards, I'd say this represented the means of manifestation of Will, rather than Will itself. I would say that this represents the force depicted in Strength, harnessed through turning inward and applying a more gentle and disciplined approach as implied in the previous card.
The ninth card in the spread represents Desire, or its means of manifestation. Here we find the Wheel of Fortune. The Wheel represents chance, cycles, change, and events taking place of their own accord without conscious control. This seems to play off of another theme in this reading, particularly the sixth card, the Page of Cups, with its concept of just letting things rise up on their own without interference or judgement. As such, I'd connect this with desire's means of manifestation, rather than desire itself.
Finally we come to the tenth and last card in the spread, representing the union of Will and Desire. In this position, we have the Eight of Pentacles. This card represents the perfection of a skill, self-expression, and creating meaning in something, with perseverance, discipline, and determination playing a role. This definitely plays off of the seventh card, the Seven of Wands. Both the eighth and ninth cards seem to already reinforce each other and previous themes in this reading with their mention of opening up and letting things come about on their own.
Further analysis of the reading shows some more details.
The most numerous suit in the spread is Pentacles,representing material matters, with three cards in the spread. This makes sense due to the prominent placement of the Ten of Pentacles in the reading . It's all about the material. This is reinforced by having no less than three tens (Swords, Pentacles, and the Wheel), which represent material manifestation, in the spread. The suit of Cups and the Majors, dreams and emotions, and archetypal forces, are the next most common, with two each in the spread, which also seems to reinforce the ongoing themes. Only one Wand, representing Will, and one Sword, representing the mind, show that these two are not the most important right now, though they will doubtless play a role later, after the phase of turning inward bears fruit and requires outward action.
Interestingly, the key card for this reading is present in the spread. The key is Strength, which further reinforces the themes.
Here we have the idea of delving within and allowing things in one's consciousness to emerge on their own, allowing inner guidance to direct one's self, then harnessing what one finds and applying skill, focus, and discipline to direct what one had harnessed towards attaining one's goals and making them manifest.
The one remaining question here is, what will you find when you look within?
That's all for this week. WRJ Tarot Musings out.