I haven’t really used the 7-card Horseshoe Spread often, but I decided to use it today and I’ve suddenly become a lot more fond of this spread!! Let me show you what I found…
The key observation that suddenly “lit the bulb” in my mind was that of horizontal connections between the cards. (Cards are numbered in order, from left to right.)
- Cards 3 & 5: Influences, Inner and Outer respectively
- In this case, inside my emotions are ruling and influencing my emotions further; outside, others’ thoughts are affecting me. Water and Air are both fluid elements and easily affect each other. Thus, my current state is like a permeable membrane, where the inner forces of Emotion and the outer forces of Thought easily influence one another.
- The Obstacles (Card 4, at the top) are a result of Thought influencing my Action– So, the recommendation here is that I should allow the fluid elements to rage as they will, inside and outside, BUT not be too hasty to let the Thoughts of Others influence my Actions!!!
- Cards 2 & 6: my Present Self meets the Action I should take
- We often forget– Action can only physically occur in the Present!! Past and Future have no direct bearing on the Action itself, though they do create influences for an Action’s trajectory…
- In this case, my cards were fascinating in the sense that the Hermit and Justice are direct mirror images of each other in the Triangle of Interpersonal Intent!!
- I am currently in a place of withdrawing from the Constructive sense of Community to find Balance in my interactions with others. But the presence of Justice implies that I tend to overcompensate and jump to a complete, Deconstructive sense of rejection of others (which I do). Instead, Justice reminds me that I need to reign that tendency in and come back to Balance.
- Cards 1 & 7: the Past meets Future Opportunities or Outcomes.
- The elemental forces that led me here are a striving of the Earth (Reality) to find grounding in the midst of Emotion. The presence of the ten of pentacles across from the Page suggests that, of the Page’s two influences, I should lean toward those opportunities that bring a fulfillment of the Earth part.
So, in general, let Thoughts and Emotions fluctuate as they do, but don’t let others’ thoughts rashly influence my actions. Seek the Mildness of balance in my interactions with others. And when facing the future, lean toward that which promotes a fulfillment of Material Wealth, not to be influenced by the ever-present sea of Emotion that brought me here.
Enjoy exploring the deeper relationships in the cards of your favorite spreads! I’ve found that the extra time and effort is well-spent! 😉
I accidentally stumbled upon the Lenormand recently… by falling in love with the gorgeous artwork on this deck! 😋
So I’ve started combining my smaller tarot spreads with a small 3-card spread of Lenormand, and what I’m getting is an even better in-depth picture, where the tarot represent my Inner World, and the Lenormand the Outer World Manifestation.
And some days I find myself starting with Outer World (following with the tarot to ask, how am I responding to this?); other days I start with my Inner Focus (followed by the Lenormand to ask, how does this Focus manifest itself in my surroundings today?).
It’s really been a fascinating journey so far!! If you’re interested, check out my reading from today, after the jump…
I got a very interesting and intense spread this morning, that I was eager to share…
Immediately I was struck by the presence of so many inter-related and conflicting Court Cards!
Here’s a breakdown:
- Higher Power (that which guides and supports me today): King of Fire or, Fire influencing further Fire
- Where I am right now: Ace of Cups– Emotional beginnings, without judgement, expectation, or fear, etc
- Situation that crosses me today: King of Cups or, Fire surrounded by Water (an uneasy alliance, where Fire moves to influence Water, but Water reacts in its own way)
- Note: Add Fire to the Current Situation and you get the Fire Queen
- Past Influences: Air guiding Water
- Opportunities: Create Mental Peace
- Note the relationship between 2 of Air and the Knight of Water!! Both share Air (Thought) in common… Thought is what guides and shapes the Knight’s Emotions.
In short, I am in a place of new Emotion today, but the burning energy of my ambitions is strong in my influences. Therefore, that Fire turns my Ace of Cups nature into a King of Cups (Fire influencing Emotion) Situation. Ergo, my near future consists of the furthering of that situation into the Queen (Water and Emotion) of (surrounded/influenced by) Fire.
Apparently my Thoughts carried my Emotions to this place not too long ago (Knight of Cups, who, by the way, tends to be like a “patron saint” of artists and creative types). So the Opportunity I have in this situation (or, what I can/should focus on controlling) is the mental Peace in my own mind (2 of Swords), by way of simply reflecting the original inspiration of Thought that comes from my Source at this time– in other words, I can generate peace in my mind by not overthinking things and just acknowledging inspiration as it comes….
Pretty straightforward, right? 😆
Want to know more about the Elemental aspect of the Court Cards? Check out this page…
I am continually fascinated by the Major Arcanum, The Devil — he seems to show up in a lot of my daily spreads. 🙂 It’s taken me a while to finally get a better grasp on what he typically means in my life…
The Devil branches from the 6th sephirot to the 8th on the Tree of Life. This indicates a few important aspects of his character:
Another way to think of Hod (sephirot 8) is the allowing of chaos to occur while we simply observe it; we submit and watch it unfold. Or, if 7 represents the raw energy needed to make things happen in our lives, 8 represents the physical form we assign to the Ineffable Energy in order to better connect with it and call upon it for practical use.
So I have come to understand my friend, The Devil, as an archetype of submission to my Shadow Self. (Notice in the imagery of Baphomet the presence of male and female, animal and human…indicating that we are All at all times…)
Coming from a place of Balanced Interpersonal Interaction, the Devil is the name we give our nature when it releases itself from dogmatic control and we submit to our gut instincts. We experiment and see what happens, without apology. Notice the two children, one chained and the other holding the chains– we are in control of our own selves. Though we may feel chained by circumstance, this card reminds us that it is we who hold our own chains…
Ultimately, when the Tree guides us through 8 via the Devil, to the 9th sephirot of Self-Reflection, we find ourselves walking in the Sun… the two children of our nature have broken the chains that bound us and found even greater liberty than we’d had before.
By isolating certain aspects of the Tree of Life for in-depth study, we’re better able to not only understand the parts that make up ourselves but also how they interact to influence the whole.
- Starting at the top, sephirots 1, 2, and 3 form the Supernal Triangle.
- This can be seen as “The Head.” Our subconscious and unconscious minds (and the Ultimate Source beyond ourselves) are the spigot from which all else arises.
- The dealings within the Supernal Triangle are all ways we may receive this Inspiration and Seed of All.
- Sephirots 4, 5, and 6 make up the Ethical Triangle.
- This can be seen as “The Hands.” The Ethical Triangle deals with all the ways we may choose to interact with others: either by way of cooperation and community, or by exploitation and selfishness.
- Sephirots 7, 8, and 9 form the Astral Triangle (where all practical magick is achieved).
- This can be seen as “The Feet.” This is the Triangle of Action. Here, we take what has come before and we either expound energy into it, to mold things to our liking and withstand or overcome obstacles… Or we withdraw our energy and wait and observe, forced to submit under that which is greater than ourselves and simply strive to gain a better understanding of that which we face.
- We also find important horizontal planes at the Great Abyss and the Veil of Paroketh:
- The Abyss marks the point at which subconscious interactions with the Source crosses into Intent — how we decide to use this knowledge in regard to our dealings with others.
- The Veil marks the point between Force and Form — below the Veil is Reality and the Physical Outcome of all that came from the upper portions of the Tree.
- The Tree is divided into three pillars:
- The center is known as the Pillar of Mildness
- On the right is the Pillar of Mercy
- On the left is the Pillar of Severity
These three pillars, in conjunction with the Triangles, grant a greater sense of the flow of energies within a spread and/or within either a single card of, or series of, Major Arcana.
The Lovers (VI)
The Lovers Major Arcanum presents a fine example of how knowledge of its placement in the Tree’s branches can grant further illumination into the card’s meaning.
The Lovers branch from sephirot 3 to sephirot 6.
- 3 is both within the Supernal Triangle (“the Head”) and at the top of the Pillar of Severity.
- 6 is both within the Ethical Triangle (“the Hands”) and in the center of the Pillar of Mildness
From this we gather several points of interest:
- The Lovers begin at: the point where we have “taken apart” the elements of the Source we received in order to better understand it. (davar mitoch davar — understanding one idea from another idea; deductive reasoning)
- The card ends at: a point of total balance in regard to our intentions and interactions with others.
- So, where there are two people in our imagery at the start of this branch, there winds up being a united couple at the end; a balanced whole emerging from the separate parts. Each person starts alone to try to understand the elements given to them, but they find balance in uniting together as one — a balance that further influences their interactions with others around them.
- We get a sense of the move of energy on the vertical plane: moving from a sense of Severity (or, disciplined intellect) to Mildness (balance and emotional/conscious harmony) — this certainly creates a sense of release.
- We also see that The Lovers cross the Great Abyss: horizontally, they have moved from the realm of the Head (or subconscious) to the realm of what we might call the Heart — the Hands (the outer pillars of the Ethical Triangle which the 6th sephirot balances) do the work of our intentions created in this Triangle, but the Heart creates a harmony of consciousness.
Within this harmony we are at ease enough to make balanced decisions with regard to how we intend to interact with others in our lives — “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy”… and cast judgement on those I judge. From a place of disciplined intellect we move into a place where we are at home with the intentions we mete out to others. And in so doing, we feel like The Lovers; we move from isolated parts of ourselves into a united and balanced whole of consciousness.
Check out my new, Kabbalah- and mythology-centered album coming out soon with CBTTF Records!
We’re having a free album release party in a couple of weeks — hope to see you there! 🙂
“The word Paroketh (PRKTh) refers to the Four Elements: Peh (Water), Resh (Air), Kaph (Fire), and Tau (Earth). It is the Veil of the Temple before the Holy of Holies… a veil made up of the four classical elements of the human body” (Dan Sewell Ward, Feb 2007). In the Kabbalistic Tree of Life, the “Veil of Paroketh” lies between the middle branches of intention, or consciousness, and the lowest branches of our physical reality…
via Paroketh’s Veil — Sarah Wallin Huff
It’s always been curious to me, that “Sorrow” (the 3 of Swords) occurs in the realm of Thought, rather than Emotion (Cups). Instead, the 3 of Cups represents “Abundance.”
The concept of the third sephirot of Binah can be expressed as “davar mitoch davar” — understanding one idea from another idea. Binah multiplies the original seed of an Element to the point that a framework of Understanding of that element is built.
Whereas the 2 of Swords is Peace, adding one more Thought to that creates Sorrow…
What is emotion without the physical biofeedback and mental interpretation of meaning attached to it?
Emotion straight from the Source is not the way we feel ABOUT something. Rather, we simply experience a feeling, and the mind asks, “What is happening around me, to me, that I can attach to this feeling with meaning?”
So, the Ace of Cups is not the Meaning itself, which we ascribe to it based on our biofeedback. Rather, it is the sensation that comes which we then try to ascribe meaning to, based on our surrounding circumstance. When Abundant Emotion floods the background and we add increasing Thoughts of Sorrow to it, our mind interprets our feelings as feelings of sorrow.
It’s often helpful to separate the Elements working together in our minds to better understand that which drives us.
Whee! My new silk tarot cloth (aka, scarf) arrived! It’s so lovely! 🙂
Pro tip: unless you’ve found a tarot cloth you love, in the design, material, and size you’re looking for, there’s a good chance you’ll save money by shopping scarves. 😉
I can’t tell you how much I enjoy sharing the stories Tarot can tell with others and relating their customized symbols to the querent’s current path!
There are so many spreads out there, and more are constantly being created. But I thought it might be best to outline just a handful of my favorites that future querents might choose from.
- “6-card Daily Oracle”: a general overview of your current self, influences, and obstacles.
- “Star Guide Spread”: Great for addressing a specific question or exploring a specific circumstance.
- 5-card “Spiritual Progress” Spread: Great for getting a clearer picture of what your current spiritual lesson might be, influences working in favor of and against spiritual progress, with suggestions of what path to take next.
- “Insecurity Spread”: A great spread to help figure out what is at the root of your current insecurity and suggestions for personal strengths you can rely on as well as what actions you might take to overcome your current situation.
I’ve found these each to be very handy spreads for the first one or two readings, getting to know a querent. But, as needs are presented, we can certainly explore any number of more complex spreads, to get into the nitty-gritty of your subconscious leanings.
The fourth sephirot of the Tree of Life falls in the Triangle of Intention (with regard to how we intend to act toward and interact with others). Four represents the sense of Community–an intent to draw others into our circle with mercy and acceptance.
What makes Four an interesting sephirot for the Swords is that it represents fostering that same sense of mercy and community, but inside our own head.
Our Thoughts are like the wind: they can move swiftly or gently, they can stir up the other Elements… but they’re always on the move. And they’re not always, if ever, unified at any single point in our days.
Simply being aware aware of that fact can be immensely helpful in our daily walk with ourselves.
Today’s “Daily Oracle” brought up the realization that, if I can recognize and foster a merciful sense of community and togetherness in my own mind (4 of Swords), my Thoughts, then, can better direct and move my Emotions (Knight of Cups). And, undergirding this process as a safety net, is Prudence (8 of Pentacles): the active submitting under physical lessons learned in the material realm.