Blog

Holiday Cactus and Death Card

Pink blooms of a holiday cactus push out of green leaves. One bloom is on its way out and hanging tenuously onto its stem. For aesthetic sake I could pluck it off but I keep it there as I like to ponder the inevitability of passing.

In this picture I’ve paired the cactus with Catrin Welz-Stein depiction of the Death Card from her magical Tarot of Mystical Moments deck. In the card we see a woman with a skeletal deathlike chest. However, beautiful flowers, mostly lilies signifying innocence, purity and rebirth, spring from the boney carcass. A butterfly, the ultimate motif of transformation, alights on a lily holding the gaze of our female in transit.

It’s difficult to accept the inevitability of death when you’re living. It’s like young people never think they’re going to die and old people fear death because that’s all they think about. My grandmother always used to say she’d come back as a strawberry in her next life. She loved strawberries. I do think it is soothing to accept that death will come but that’s not all there is. Curiosity will give ballast to the journey beyond.

I suppose when it is time the bloom from my holiday cactus will fall to the ground. I don’t need to hurry it along. I do wonder at the cycles of life, how so much depends on mixture, taking in, letting go, finding the right balance between the two and then trusting the process of creation that the universe guarantees.

Weekly Tarot Card – 5 of Pentacles

Fives in Tarot signify conflict and change. They are midway between the ace and number ten, therefore halfway in the arc of the suit’s journey. Here we are midway in the journey of pentacles: material wealth, resources, earthly values.

A destitute couple trudge barefoot in a snowstorm. The man is on crutches and looks up to the heavens in defiance. The woman is bundled in rags and huddled over, eyes downcast. They are so caught up in their despair they don’t notice the illuminated pentacles in the stained glass window of the church at their side. Help is at hand if only they would lift their eyes from their despair to notice it.

When problems come they tend to take over our entire perspective and we get caught in a negative mindset. We go over the problem, how it started, how awful it is, how impossible it is to solve and we become closed off to any chance of awakening to a possible solution. If we don’t believe a problem can be solved then how can we ever be receptive to a solution?

These unfortunate souls in this picture remind us of the pitfalls of a scarcity consciousness. Times may be difficult and challenging. But sure as the Wheel of Fortune goes up and down, nothing lasts forever, there is always change, and even in the darkest night there is the light of the stars.

Weekly Tarot Card – 7 of Swords

A fellow steals away from a battlefield encampment. He is carrying five swords and leaving behind two. He seems very pleased with himself by the smirk on his face. Clearly he feels he’s getting away with something.

Many feel this is the card of betrayal. There’s trickery afoot. The question then becomes are you the one who feels betrayed or are you the fellow in this picture who has betrayed? Time to come to terms with this and make amends or let it go, depending on your position.

Others, like myself, see this as the card of strategy since swords in Tarot have to do with thoughts, the workings of the mind and stratagems. Notice the fellow is bringing five swords and leaving two behind. He knows what to take with him and what to let go of. He is thinking strategically.

Is there an area in your life where you need to re-assess and keep what’s working while leaving behind what isn’t? Think strategically, be a boss, and make the tough decisions. Clear thinking cuts through any ounce of sentimentality. You’ll be glad you did.

Weekly Tarot Card – Queen of Swords

Facing to the right or the future in Tarot terms, this Queen sits on her throne adorned with angels and butterflies holding a sword upright in her right hand of action while extending her left hand in a soothing gesture of grace. Her relatively stern facial expression belies great mental clarity. She is nobody’s fool and can cut through a fiction as neatly as the double-edged sword she wields. Will she strike you dead or dub thee knight?

The sky for the most part is a clear blue with a bird winging through perhaps with a message for you. Puffs of clouds recede in the distance. Trees stand upright on fertile ground with a river running through. The mind sifts through cloudy thoughts to gain clarity.

Although we might fear this queen’s judgment we notice the butterflies and angels in her clothes, crown and throne and we realize that she is fundamentally a champion of transformation and wants the best for us.

This week you are to use your powers of discernment to seek out the truth in situations. See them for what they are and build a foundation of clarity so that you can grow along a positive path of evolution.

Weekly Tarot Card – The Magician

A magician typically pulls a rabbit out of a hat or makes the pretty lady disappear from the box after exclaiming a few choice syllables and waving a red handkerchief. Everyone oohs and ahhs because these creations appear out of the air…and it’s called magic.

This Magician of the Tarot is enlightened. He uses the elements of the earth, appearing here in the symbols of the Tarot, cup as water, pentacle as earth, sword as air and wand as fire, in order to manifest into physical reality the divine directives sent to him from heaven. His resources are within reach…laid out before him on his designer’s table. He is the human connector of the divine on earth and his form of magic is pure as the white of his tunic and vital as the red of his robe.

The Magician appears this week as Mercury goes direct and we leave the retrograde cycle. We press forward with new insights and revitalized energy, knowing that we have the resources at our fingertips to materialize our dreams onto this earthly realm. Let us align our purpose with the divinity within to create for the benefit of all.