By the Power of Three…

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Welcome to the latest Tarot blog hop wrangle by Aisling the Bard

We are calling this Hop “Brighid’s Blue Moon”. This festival is a “trifecta”, a combination of three significant events on a single date. February 1st is “Imbolc”, meaning “In the Belly”, the festival dedicated to Brighid of the Three Fires, who brings life back to Land, Sea, and Sky after winter’s doldrums have passed. But on Imbolc Eve, the day before the festival, we will see a Full Moon, which is also a Blue Moon, the second Full Moon in a calendar month. Therefore, we are celebrating a “Solilune”, a combination of a Solar and Lunar Festival, and it’s dedicated to a Deity who Herself is represented in Her Celtic realm by three Elemental locations, Land, Sea, and Sky, and three characteristics of the Inner Flame, Poesy, Smithcraft, and Healing, as well as shedding her beneficent influence on three areas of human life, Body, Mind, and Spirit . This day also represents a Secret Gift of Spirit, the Blue Moon, representing those things that are rare and precious–after all, they only happen “Once in a Blue Moon”. 
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Somewhere around four years ago, a conversation with a colleague turned into the start of a new project, many lengthy conversations sat in fields and notebooks daubed with scribbles and free association ramblings that birthed into images for a potential oracle deck… The project has sat in stasis for the last 18months or so as life for each of us took its twists and turns… a project almost forgotten until a few weeks ago when it started to tug at my sleeve like an attention seeking toddler… so if you’ll indulge me, (and excuse the low res images) then I will use my as yet unnamed work in progress deck to travel through Aisling’s spread, as it is demanding to come back and draw breath in 2018…
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The Foundation for the Year to Come…
Moving from left to right…
The first image is one of the few that got named and is called Blindsight. The image reminded me of retinal scans and the patterns that you see when you scrunch your eyes up tight but also the way that sometimes even with your eyes closed, you can get a feelsense of what surrounds you. I showed this picture to someone recently and they spontaneously told me a story of when they had been driving in the middle of nowhere in the full darkness of night and their headlights failed… One of the passengers was blind and she guided them all back home, never missing a turn… So I guess the body is a miraculous thing and it will take you where you need to go, even if you cannot see the path ahead…
The second image brings to mind the Ace of Swords… here it feels to suggest cold sharp cutting and editing… I think that the benefit of having a project go into stasis (even though it feels woeful at the time) is that it gives an air of detachment so you can cull out the ideas that when fresh felt so precious but with new eyes later down the line well hmmm… that’s gotta die!!! Conversely, some things that felt a bit naff when fresh seem to find a new gravitas…
The third image… well that has very many W.I.P. names, all of which are inappropriate puns around cocks and roosters… but the overall gist of this image is to greet each new dawn with gusto!
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The Construction…
What is the energy of the new path that presents itself?
Oh super! A choppy voyage ahead! But what is life without a challenge? Again, I feel that this is about heading somewhere even if you don’t know what you’re heading into… what’s the quote? Prepare for the worst and hope for the best?
From what will I need protection on this journey?
This card has a working title of ‘Grit… Oyster… Pearl’… oftentimes it’s beneficial to have negative motivators… those things that get under your skin and annoy you into action… Over the last year, I had a lousy time with a ‘piece of grit’ and it lead to a costly mistake… I tolerated a situation that I knew was crap thinking I could learn something from it… I guess I learned that sometimes you have to just walk away… So looking at the previous image… yup a choppy time ahead so I will have enough on my plate without having to deal with other people’s grit tossing… The Ace of Swordish above may help me to nip these things in the bud…
What energies of my own or of spirit will guide and protect me?
When I drew this image it seemed to appear from an unknown place… when I showed it to my colleague, she immediately recognised it as being from her dream from the night before… So energies from spirit… dreams and visions… Energies of my own, now when I look at this, I see a potter’s wheel… and I feel that the message is to centre myself correctly…
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The Surprise!
For this first card, I’m going to dip into my notes and share the poem? prose? that landed whilst I was working on the image…
It matters not what ye call me, I am Mercurial spirit and when I travel I travel beyond the speed of sound and leave your words floating in my wake… I’ve been known by many names by men and Gods alike… I sweep the skies… I catch dreams lost into the ether and bring them back down to ground…Nudged towards their mortal keepers… I keep the flight paths clear for Gods to move unhindered…
The middle image… this is another imaged plucked out of my colleague’s mind, much to her amazement and delight… A surprise? No… not really… more a nod to the universal interconnectedness of all things and that nothing exists in isolation… With respect to completing our project…maybe the realisation that the destination we think we are looking for was already consolidated at the conception…
The final image… I am smiling as in the context of this spread, she does feel to bring Brighid’s blessings… but I’m going to dip back into my notebook…
A bard – moving people with the unseen but heard magical forces of her music…
And on a final note, the words that she then lead me to…

A kind of light spread out from her. And everything changed color. And the world opened out. And a day was good to awaken to. And there were no limits to anything. And the people of the world were good and handsome. And I was not afraid any more.”

― John Steinbeck, East of Eden

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Palming Aces…

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Welcome to the latest Tarot Blog Hop, wranlged by Arwen Lynch Poe, who posed the question:

How can I best foster the energy of the Aces in my life?
My thoughts leading to a spread went roughly like this:
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Smith-Waite Tarot Deck ~ Centennial Edition ~ (c) U.S. Games Systems. Inc.

Ok… so whip your Aces out of the pack and lay them to one side for now.
From the majors, pick out The Empress, The Wheel, The World, The Sun and The Magician… place these as imaginary fingers going from left to right as shown above with The Empress as the thumb to The Magician sat as the pinky… In the palm of the hand, place The Tower…
Next, select the Ace that you want to work with… place the Ace in the palm over The Tower and imagine that it is a seed that is going to be cracked open… visualise it breaking apart…
Now… place a card at each finger and much like the 3 Magi or the good fairies that visited Sleeping Beauty… imagine each card that is laid down as being a gift bestowed by the Major…
So you might say…
I am The Empress and I give to you the gift of the 8 of Swords…
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Smith-Waite Tarot Deck ~ Centennial Edition ~ (c) U.S. Games Systems. Inc.

 So here are the cards I pulled for myself:
The Ace of Swords was chosen… the question relates to a creative project but the Ace of Wands does not feel to be the best fit here as the fun creative part has been done and now it comes to the brutal editing…
So… In brief…
I am The Empress and I give to you the gift of the 8 of Swords…
The ability to wiggle free of perceived restrictions and the means to find your way out of the corner that you feel that you’ve backed yourself into…
I am The Wheel and I give to you the gift of the 6 of Cups…
A reminder to return to the original source and exchange of ideas and the ability to find the patterns and cycles…
I am The World and I give to you the gift of the 7 of Pentacles…
This one made me laugh somewhat as every time I’ve thought about this project recently, the words that come to mind are – ughhh… it’s just withering on the vine… So this feels to be a timely kick up the ass to give me the strength and patience to reap what has been sown before it does indeed shrivel away…
I am The Sun and I give to you the gift of the Queen of Cups…
I’ll help you to bring back and restore that loving feeling!
I am The Magician and I give to you the gift of the 9 of Pentacles…
Let’s finish this spell and bring things to a fruitful ending… money’s not really the issue here… I’ve been speaking to The Empress and we both agree it’s time for you to complete this so you can cut free and move on to the next task…
And speaking of moving on…
 I have neighbours either side waiting to hear from you 🙂
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12 Days and 78 Cards of Crimbo

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For this blog hop, Arwen Lynch Poe set the tone with-

It’s that time of the year again! The dreaded office party. Oh no! But we are going to make it fun. Now is the time for our Winter celebration. You may call that Yule or Chanukah or Kwanzaa or Solstice or Christmas or some other name. For this hop, your challenge is to join us in an office party. Crazy right? But read on! You are to create a Winter gift for your readers. That can be your insight into which Tarot/Lenormand/Oracle card is the most like Winter for you. Maybe there’s a deck you find seasonal. You could offer a recipe that is tied to a Tarot card. Maybe tell us a story about holidays past. Create a spread, write a poem, design a card. Whatever you choose to do will be a perfect gift of you to the rest of our Tarot community. So gather round for this Winter Tarot Blog Hop as we do our own version of a virtual Secret Elf office party.

Well, unfortunately, folks… I am a party pooper of gigantic proportions and I’ve got my feet up and I’m indulging in some 1980’s TV…

But… before you draw any Grinch comparisons… I have got you a little gift… Some folks say that TV rots the brain… but it gave me a little food for thought and something for your tarot table… see… you hear nonsense…

I see ∑

If you add up all the numbers 1 to 12…then you get a number that sounds more than somewhat familiar to Tarot readers everywhere… you get that magical 78… So…I’m sure many of you will have managed to slip the name of a new deck to Santa and those of you that have been good have goodies to play with… as for the naughtier amongst you…I’m sure you’ve already got plenty to choose from… so gather your decks… and here… I bring to you…

 

The 12 Days of Christmas 78 Card Lego Spread

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Lego? I hear you say…

Yes… Lego…OK… you have all the pieces… there’s the picture on the box of how it looks when constructed…

(OK… I said I’d got you a gift… I said nothing about it being a good gift…)

The bad news is…

Ahh…. the instructions got tossed along with all the torn up wrapping paper…

so… you’re just going to have to wing it and build your own version…

Design it how you like!

The GOOD NEWS is…

No batteries required!

You have 12 days to do it…

But best of all…

It doesn’t induce mind-bending nauseating pain when you accidentally tread barefoot on it in the dark…

😉

Hey!!!

Hear that…?

Pesky Carol Singers…

I’m off to release the hounds…

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On the 12th day of Christmas, my old Thoth gave to me…
12 Dudes a-dangling
11 Ladies lusting
10 Wheels a-turning
9 Lanterns burning
8 Actions pending
7 Wins for claiming
6 Souls inflaming
A FIVE POINTED STAR
4 Stubborn rams
3 White swans
2 Pillars tall
And a Magus with a monkey
🙂

To escape to safety… throw the dogs a mince pie or better still…

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Yule tbh…

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Yule… to be honest…

Every year, I’m less and less enamoured…

Over the years, I’ve eliminated bit by bit all the things that irk me…  which has got easier and easier as most of the family and in-laws self-culled into a couple of categories… the deceased and the estranged…

But still my humour gets increasingly dark… A friend of mine blames it on me being an equinox baby… Karen you were born when things were in perfect balance… of course you’ll feel the gloom as the days shorten and darken…

Whatev’! My sunny disposition disappears into the shadows…

So basically I’ve forced myself out of hibernation for this…

The title filled me with chagrin…The Joy of Gifting…

Gifts!!! OH NO!!!! Please No… don’t give me gifts… or more precisely, please don’t give me gifts that I have to open in front of people… It fills me with horror… I have one of those faces that moves and betrays every fleeting thought… and I am a genuinely dreadful liar… Opening gifts with an audience… Looking at faces eager to see a pleased reaction and the agony of unwrapping and discovering what’s inside… please, please, please don’t let it be something I’ll hate… Because guaranteed, my face will crumple… And then the donor will ask me – don’t you like it? And there will be a painfully long silence until I say… errrr no… actually no… I don’t… Which generally goes down like a fart in a spacesuit but I have this highly mobile and expressive face so white christmas lies aren’t going to fool anyone… I’ll get told that there was no need to be so rude and my face will gurn as in my head the words flow…. rude? rude? me rude? why have you done this to me? what on god’s green earth made you not only think of me but also think that I would like this??? don’t you know me at all?? do you know anything about me? why? why? why? honestly…

Yeah… generally…. given the choice of opening gifts and skinning myself alive and rolling in rock salt… I’d go for the latter…

And don’t even get me started on the levels of mortification I feel when I realise that I’ve given a truly bloody awful gift… I have seen someone’s crestfallen face and caught their look of utter despair before they pulled their facial muscles into a mask of social niceties and I have broken down in tears and wailed… I know!!! I know!!! It’s awful!! I’m sorry!!! I don’t know what I was thinking… I think I was pre-menstrual and just wanted to get out of the shop… I’ll make it up to you! I promise!!

Though… interestingly… surprise gifts on random whims on non-official and non- pre-determined dates… Spontaneous splurges… I abso-bloody-lutely LOVE!!! I’m a very merry unbirthday to you! type of girl… An out of the blue gift of the tiniest thing will launch me instantaneously into a happy happy joy joy dance and squee overload!

Anyway!!! Enough of the bah humbug… I guess I’d better put the Grinch on ice and get down to the task in hand…

Arwen asked us to draw some cards for the following…

 

The Joy Of Gifting

Arwen's Joy MDE
So… here’s some cards I drew… I’ll apologise in advance to any Lenny readers as I’m not studious but I like the images and so I make things up… Besides…. they’re not Lenny’s cards… they’re mine!

1. What gift would you give the world if you could?

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Well… after that petite outburst… this may come as no surprise…

I give the gift of choice… pick what you like, when you like and do with it what you will…

2.  What gift would you want from the world?

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Yeah… this is probably kind of selfish… but I’d like a tip off on how to move into somewhere big enough to run both my home life and my business from. I live in a house full of creative people and it’s chaos! The kids are getting bigger, the space is getting tighter and the house fills with all manner of art supplies and musical instruments… Myself and Mr S have tried all manner of conventional routes and lost count of the number of times we’ve felt to be on the brink of progress just to be informed by a suit behind a desk, that ‘computer says ‘no…” Maybe it’s time to start backing the horses, to throw a few quid on some long shots and try and pull off an against all odds accumulator… But then again… the house always wins in the gaming business…

3.  What gift have you gotten that has brought you joy?

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Oh… OK… this is kind of personal… That’s definitely Mr S there in the middle and I’m doubly sure as the coffin sits beside him… He’s a sexton, he’s spent 35 years standing next to coffins… Ok… so it’s popped up in the cards, so now I have to tell you something I don’t talk about… See… Me and Mr S have this strange kind of thing we do in the bedroom… Ha!!! Calm down!! It’s not going to get TMI!!! Sorry to disappoint you!

Whenever I have a major decision to make on which direction to take, just before I fall asleep, I will place my hands on Mr S’s head and say to him bring me a picture, find me an image… Now I never tell him what the question is but every time I do this he will bring me three images, which at first seem very random but then there will be a word that connects them and that is where my answer lies… he calms my mind and lays my worries to rest… and that’s not joy as in happy happy joy joy but I feel joy in a deeper way, in a sense of profound calm and clarity… and that feels joyous…

4. What gift have you given that has brought you joy?

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Well… this is how I reciprocate to Mr S… I saw these cards and I instantly knew what they meant because he’d told me about a year ago what my greatest gift to him was. He sat and thanked me one day for being his pillar of strength through his darkest times and always being there and patiently waiting for him to pull himself out of black wells of depression, for giving him a reason to want to make fresh starts and to see the world as a brighter place.

5. What is one last thing you would like to share about this season?

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Ha!!! Sorry folks… The Grinch is back!!

Ok… basically I am finding this delightfully hilarious as I’m seeing laid out, the conspiracy I indulge in with all my very best friends every year… We have a little plan… we aim to see each other for a good old chinwag around mid-December, then we make a pact to blissfully ignore all the festivities, not write cards, not swap gifts, we laugh and make jokes and wish each other the best of luck in surviving the onslaught of family bliss that’s due to unfold and we agree to speak again in the Spring… See you when the clocks change! Catch you at the equinox! Though… to be honest… we rarely last that long and usually we start to  emerge around February…about the same time as the crocuses start to pop up…

And on that note… I’m heading back off into hibernation…

I may be packing more Joy come next hop…

I’m solar powered don’t ya know?! 😀

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Hsi Wang Mu and Feminine Power…

The September issue of Soul Path Magazine is all about Hsi Wang Mu and feminine power…

I created a little decks-ercise inspired by a chance encounter with a frog…

Hsi Wang Mu pbtCheck out Soul Path Magazine

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A Year with the Goddesses…

It’s amazing how time flies… It only seems like yesterday that I was contacting Lyn Thurman to talk about writing for Soul Path Magazine…

Yet a couple of days ago I was submitting a piece on Hsi Wang Mu for the forthcoming issue… which will be my 13th…

Here are the faces I’ve met over the last 12 months…

It’s been a pleasure…