What’s in the cards?

  Fortunes forecast! Lucky charms! -Little John, Robin Hood 1973

Once upon a time I used to do a constant stream of tarot work. When we were “baby witches” in our teen years tarot work was the coolest. Every circle, every sabbat, every question… a deck was pulled out and we read as a group or paired off and did individual readings. My first tarot deck is well loved. I also think it is out of print, because both of us are old.

Witches tarot

Cards from the Witches Tarot

As time went on we moved on from tarot and did all sorts of other things. I still loved tarot and would pull out my cards to play with or on occasion would pop down to see if my friend from Mud & Magic would do a reading for me. She would pull out her basket of cards (because she had a collection) and I could pick which deck I wanted her to use. I remember having a mad love for a cat deck she had, even if it was a bit odd. Sometimes we’d pull out the Inner child cards for a ritual, their oversized shape made shuffling so difficult, especially for those of us with tiny hands. The were fun though, brightly coloured, with fairy tale pictures.

Years went by and my deck started to gather dust. I found a new deck and fell madly in love with it and started to play with it all the time. I was rusty though, lack of use had made me feel awkward when reading. This was really driven home one night when I pulled out my cards and read for Sarah. We were relaxed after a delicious meal, hanging out while the guys played with a drum and I did my best, but man did I feel like I was struggling. That is the moment I realized I had to use my gift more often. Use it or lose it as they say!

Eqyptian tarot

Cards from the Ancient Egyptian Tarot

I pulled myself together and started reading for myself again and occasionally for friends. Then I decided to really focus on tarot and began to pull a card daily. It helped, I felt my readings were smoother again. Every Samhain I bring a deck of some sort to work to read for my coworkers and the past few years have been really great.

This year I have begun journaling about my cards and have started to try new spreads. I still use my first tarot deck, but I go through cycles where I am all about it and then I put it away and pull out my other deck. A few years ago my grandma gifted me one of her old tarot decks that I grew up playing with. I still haven’t tried to read with it yet, but one of these days I will. The cards are pristine.  I think we played with them a few times and grandma read the book that came with it. She may have done some readings, but otherwise I mostly just looked at the pictures on the cards. We spent far more time using playing cards to read with. Maybe one of these days I’ll pick up a book on cartomancy and try that again.

I have been feeling the urge to find a new deck. There are several that are super popular right now and I see them everywhere. Sometimes I think that I should get a regular old Rider-Waite deck, but then I see some of the other ones out there and I want something fancy and pretty. What is your go to deck these days and why?


School is back in session. The last few weeks have been busy at work, busy to the point where the day is nothing but a blur. We’ve also had some wicked heat, and the air keeps not working in the office. There were days that felt like they never ended. Thankfully, the heat seems to have finally let up and we’re going to have normal temps. Which is good, because September feels like fall and fall makes me want to dress in layers and sweaters.

I’ll be doing a workshop and the closing ritual at the Madison Pagan Pride Day. I hope the day goes well for everyone. I still have to tidy up my ritual a bit, but I have a few weeks still. The coven will be meeting next weekend and I hope to bounce some ideas off of them.

I’ve been a busy bee on my weekends. I decided to make 90% of the Christmas/Yule gifts so I have been slaving away. I think I am a good chunk through them now, which is good. I wanted to have most of them completed with only a few left before October. I still have Halloween costumes to work on too, and will have to swap out to those soon.

I’ve been spending a lot of time pondering my tarot cards. I don’t like to live my life by divination, but its been helpful for insight and meditation lately. I’ve also been trying to get back into the habit of stretching and meditating. At work there is a weekly meditation session we can attend,  I’ve been trying hard to make it. I find it helps keep me focused.

CandleI’ve been so focused on my crafts for other people I haven’t spent much time doing photography or anything for me. There hasn’t been much to share or post about so the blog has been a bit neglected as well. I am sure that will change as the seasons change. The heat tends to steal my strength. Soon enough I’ll be freezing all the time and maybe that will motivate me to get things done.

Building traditions

It was a crazy week and so I didn’t get a chance to write as much as I had planned. That is how it goes sometimes. I have next week’s prompts ready to go and hopefully I will be more on the ball with them.

I have learned over the past 3 years that it is incredibly difficult to feel connected to something when you are far away. It is more difficult when you feel your voice is not heard. I was pretty lucky in that my coven did their best to stay connected. We had Skype rituals, we emailed, we had our own FB group to share things. This helped. I felt like part of the circle still, and my initiates got a chance to “meet” the other people in our circle.

In a small group that works. In the larger sense of a tradition though, you often feel lost and out-of-place when you are not there to be visible. How do you feel united when you are not there to be part of something? How do you connect with several other groups who often are very quiet and don’t reach out from their own coven borders? It is difficult. And over time it just becomes the norm not to know those people.

It is sad. I sometimes wonder how larger traditions with groups all over various places do it. Newsletters I suppose help, email lists that are active and full of chatter would help too. Chances to bring everyone together also help. Or do their Tradition Leaders know that once the groups are outside city borders you have to let them go and begin their own thing?

So a choice had to be made. I have been waffling back and forth, back and forth. The cards kept throwing down the Magician. I kept saying “I don’t know what this means” And then suddenly things all became clear.

So now here I am at the other end of it full of conflicting feelings. On one hand I am excited by possibilities. Excited at what I can build. On the other hand I am feeling lost and worried that I will lose friends. Sad to no longer be part of something that I spent years and years being part of. It is complicated.

So here I am preparing to build my own tradition. Preparing to grow my coven and have a spiritual life. Preparing for the moments of “WTF am I doing??” and the moments of “Wow this is awesome”.

I have 18+ years of learning and training. I have 15+ years of being part of a traditional circle. I have 17+ years of being eclectic and trying new things. I have all these years of bonding the 2 and making my personal practice work while leading and being part of a tradition. I know I can do this.

Finding others who want to come along for the ride will be interesting, but I trust in my faith and my abilities. So I guess we will see where it takes me.

Change in the air

My move to the USA caused several changes for me spiritually. I am away from my tradition, alone, trying to slowly build something that builds community and faith. It hasn’t been easy to search out like-minded people. There have been moments of frustration. There have been moments of happiness. It has been a mix of emotions.

I look at the people who have inspired me and I wonder if I am even half as good as they are at this. Then I remind myself that I can be only me, and well, that is who my people have. I try my best to be a good leader, a good community member and I remind myself to get out there to meet others.

This spring is bringing more change. I am pondering my path and what I want out of it. I am looking over the things I am so comfortable in and poking at the things I tend to ignore. I am thinking about legacy and what I will build and leave behind. I am questioning some items, hugging others and doing some praying.

I pulled some cards last night for guidance. I got The Magician, Two of Swords and The Fool. I just sorta sighed as it told me what I already knew, but that is the way it goes sometimes. I went to FB and asked my friends for their insights. They all seemed to align with what I had thought.

I am ignoring a choice I need to make (yep). I have the power and creativity to solve it and build what I want(totally). I need to make the leap of faith and follow my heart.

I am good at leaps of faith. It helps that I have a ton of faith and I trust in my instincts. I am waiting though. This time it isn’t just about me. This time it is about the other people in my group and what their wishes are. This time I have to put the information out there and wait to see.

So I wait and I ponder. And I plan and I write. I pray and I meditate. We will see where the path leads.

Meditation: Jan 31 2015 and musings.

I’ve been pondering a dream I had about a White Cobra that was a guardian of a mountain.  Cobras and snakes are often in my meditations and are one of my spirit animals. Those who have been following me for awhile may remember me researching winged cobras. I had one that was around for awhile, and I think it was Wadjet, but its hard to know.

So I had several people offer suggestions on the White Cobra and I have let it simmer in my mind. Last night I meditated as I drifted off to sleep. Tonight I dug back through my dream and journey diary and some threads are starting to maybe come together.

First though, last nights meditation.

I was about to head into my astral temple when Freyja stopped me. She handed me something that I thought was a staff, but then as she walked away I looked down and realized it was a gigantic skeleton key. I examined it but was unsure why she gave it to me. I took it with me into my space and hung it off a branch of a tree.

One of my snakes that guards the tree slithered out to examine it. The snake was long, white, with yellow markings. It wrapped around the key and proceeded to have a nap.

I sensed something behind me and turned to find a cow munching on some grass. I stared at it and headed towards it quietly. I reached out to touch the large curved horns on its head and pricked my finger on the tip of the horn. Some of my blood ran down the horn and I took my finger back. The cow continued to eat the grass.

I turned and saw that the grass was all turning to sand. I walked over to a round disk and said I would allow myself to be moved if this space prevented a discussion. I was moved to a desert. There was nothing around and the wind was blowing. A storm was coming up. I knew I would be buried alive by the sand, but I was not worried. I lay back and let it happen. I know that sometimes we must let go. As the sand buried me I fell through it and appeared in a black pyramid. The stones were dark, there was no real light.

I could see a long tunnel leading out of the center room, and could only catch glimpses of images on the walls. A voice echoed through the room saying one word. “Child”. I called out asking for some sort of hint as to who it was. A throne appeared with a dark figure on it. The head was a male lion, but then the mouth opened and the lion vanished and a different head came forth. Before I could figure out what the head was I was woken up.

Today I flipped through my journal.

The cow has appeared in my space before, but I had no interaction with it. I know lions have made appearances along with bone monkies and alligators/crocs. I had a dream before of getting a skeleton key tattoo on my back with a rose. Bast and Freyja have often appeared as I work with them. Cats of all types, panthers, tigers, kittens… and then all the snakes. Cobras, pythons… regular snakes… Once, and only once did Set appear in a dream. He used me with permission of Bast to pass on a message to someone I knew.

I don’t know what any of it means, but I will continue to ponder. I am often doing magick of some sort in my dreams, spells to protect, spells to heal, all sorts of spells. I am often battling things or tsunamis and twisters are involved. I think I will have to get more specific and ask for clarification before I sleep. For now I am going to pull out the Book of Doors and pull a card or two.

So, the first card that half fell out and thus needed to be pulled is Udjit ( Ta, #3). Snakes. Second card, Apet (Aah, #2). Hippopotamus, with a croc/alligator on her back. Kekiu (TEpli-Aui-Un #5) Frogs.

I’m open to thoughts.