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Practical impacts of astrological cycles

When I did a lot of tarot readings, I used to find they came in waves, not evenly dispersed in time. Often a new moon or full moon would trigger them, especially in certain signs. Other planetary conjunctions, or events in the world, could also trigger fear and anxiety. And then there are the times of year when people typically take stock of their lives and often had readings done – solstice, New Year, birthdays, and interestingly enough, the end of summer (early September).

Now I’m intrigued by similar waves of work in a less fun area – divorce mediations. This is something I do as a sideline to environmental mediations, because I’m trained for it and there’s no-one else in this area that offers it. In the last two days I’ve had a rash of requests for divorce mediations – and they want it now, not later. Looking at my handy lunabar, I see that it’s a waning moon in Gemini. Perhaps something about self-other came to a head recently and it’s time to let go? Interesting to speculate – any other ideas?


August 4, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 9 Comments

Back just in time for Spring!

I’ve been busily posting away about my adventures in New Zealand, and am just getting organized enough to begin thinking about tarot and astrology again. Over on Comparative Tarot, we’re talking about the Four of Cups. While this card may bring to mind dissatisfaction and ennui, it can also be a good suggestion to slow down and check in with your emotions. Spring has sprung (one of the advantages of going on a month-long vacation far away), and it’s a perfect time to sit on a park bench and admire the cherry blossoms, while contemplating whatever there is that needs attention in your life. I’ve written more about this process in a recent chapter in my new Living the Tarot book, if this is something that resonates with you.

In the meantime, the Vernal Equinox is upon us! After the long dreary winter of rain, snow, dark, and cold, it’s a nice thought that the days will be getting longer and warmer from here on out. Saturday is the day – in the morning, the Moon will be in Taurus, and mid-morning, the Sun will move into Aries – strengthening our emotional/physical connections to the earth and garden and our energetic enthusiasm for activity and new beginnings. A good time to plant some seedlings, prune and weed to make way for new growth. Once the garden is all nice and tidy, a void of course moon in the afternoon may encourage lazy enjoyment of spring blossoms, without any particular need to get anything done. The moon moves into Gemini in the early evening and makes positive aspects to a number of other planets, setting the stage for a social night out (or in), filled with conversation and friendship.

Sounds like a wonderful way to start the new vernal year!

March 19, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 1 Comment

Tarot Transits – Sun trine Saturn

Here is an interesting aspect, occurring Jan 18-27. With the Sun trine Saturn, there is an easy flow of energy between the self and responsibilities, structures, and other necessary activities. If you found it hard to make progress on New Year’s resolutions or life goals at the actual New Year, it may be easier at this time to establish these good habits and put into place needed and positive structural changes, especially if your birthday falls in this period.

Here are some tarot cards you could draw for this transit to help guide your personal activities in response to this positively aspected Saturn energy:

1. What structure would be most beneficial to add to my life right now?
2. What responsibilities could I productively step up and take care of right now?
3. What benefits would this bring over the coming year?

Choose whichever one of the first two seems to best apply, then use the third question to help add even more motivation by highlighting the possible results.

January 24, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | 2 Comments

Tarot Transits – Jupiter in Pisces

With this post, I’m starting a series looking at astrological transits and/or aspects and how tarot can be used to put these astrological energies to good use. I’ll post and discuss a particular event that’s going on either currently or in the next few days, along with related questions that can be used with a simple 1-3 card tarot reading. I hope you’ll post the results of your readings in the comments section – if there’s enough interest in doing this regularly we can start a discussion group.

It seemed fitting to start this series with Jupiter entering Pisces today, January 17, until June 5. Jupiter is the planet of fortune, expansiveness, and prosperity, and for those of us who make all or part of our living in areas related to Pisces and the 12th house, this period may provide a particularly beneficial opportunity for new and creative endeavors. Anyone who works in areas relating to spirituality, creativity, the occult, or hidden matters of the mind (e.g., psychologists) or spirit may benefit. There could also be a focus on charitable work and ways of recreating economies that reflect our personal and spiritual values.

One aspect that will need to be overcome for many of us is building a belief that our particular gifts are worth being monetarily compensated for, and that it’s acceptable to make a living, even a good living, using them. Pisces may suffer from self-doubt or lack of self-esteem, although Jupiter can help bring a much-needed positive and confident outlook to counter that. Jupiter also brings fiery energy to jump-start plans that may have been swirling around in the back of our minds for a while without materializing.

There are also challenges during this period. One should take care not to fall under the sway of illusory influences or economic schemes that are shifty or not on solid ground. There could be a dreamy, unrealistic quality to plans or ideas for money-making, especially daydreams of easy money. Alcohol and other temptations can derail the best-laid plans. Sticking to a sound business plan while also holding true to our spiritual values provides the surest path forward in creating a more rewarding personal economy.

With all of the above in mind, and also keeping firmly in mind the time period within which we’re working, you may wish to draw a single tarot card for each of these questions (feel free to choose other questions if you prefer):

1) How can I best use the Jupiter in Pisces energy to increase my personal wealth/income in a way consistent with my spiritual values?
2) What pitfalls or challenges are most likely to be of concern for me personally in doing so?

Here are my results with the Tarot of Dreams:

1) Four of Coins, reversed. This is an interesting message that I interpret as not being afraid to spend money – not hoarding or saving in fear of not having enough. I should not have too structured of a plan that limits me from moving in new directions, particularly out of fear or concern for the future or financial stability. Jupiter is an expansive, generous energy, and during this time at least, I can afford to give my gifts to the world and spend money to make money. There are opportunities I could miss if I am too conservative.

2) Queen of Coins, reversed. Two reversed cards in Coins suggests to me that my focus needs to be less about money and how to plan for it and obtain it, less focus on material things in general (which will ultimately create what I need in this area). I spent most of last year tending to my house and business in very material ways, and I need to go in new directions this year. The Queen of Pentacles is my natural sign, with many planets in Capricorn near the midheaven, so I need to resist the temptation to continue with being the same person I always am and doing the same things I always do, and let other parts of myself take the fore.

January 17, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | 4 Comments

New Year’s Resolutions in Capricorn

This was an interesting New Year’s period for Capricorns, astrologically speaking. The Sun and Mercury were conjunct from Jan 1-5, and Mercury was retrograde. Now, I personally think that the Solstice-New Year’s period is always a bit more meaningful for us Cappys – it comes right at our birthdays, emphasizing reflection on the past year and looking forward toward the coming year. Being an Earth sign, we feel the stillness of mid-winter that is solstice deeply, the fallowness of the earth, the inward being in the darkness and then reaching out again toward the light.

But this year, we had this added factor. People tend to moan and groan at Mercury retrograde, but let’s take a more careful look. Mercury is the planet of expression and thought. It’s the thinking part of our brain, ruling Gemini and Virgo. Sure, there can be all kinds of screw-ups with transportation, technology, and communication. But leaving that aside for a moment, it’s also an excellent time to rethink, re-evaluate, re-imagine our lives. Kind of like a New Year’s resolution, only better. Rather than reaching out to communicate outwardly, we’re thinking inwardly and communing with ourselves, perhaps with that deep still part of the mind that Mercury doesn’t always sit still enough to listen to.

Add to that the conjunction with the Sun in our sign. So, what are we thinking about, re-evaluating, re-imagining? Our outward selves – what we project to the world, what we show everyone of ourselves. For a Capricorn, that’s serious business indeed. And interestingly, I saw several of my fellow Cappies posting in this period about exactly this – starting a new career, rededicating themselves to walking their walk and being successful at it, and other plans of that nature.

Myself, I felt somewhat fallow in this period. I have reached most of my life goals from the last 5 years over the last year, and wasn’t sure I was ready to make new ones. However, just as this period was ending, I felt it all come together and I realized what my next process needs to be – outwardly focused yes, but perhaps more personal than usual for my goals.

I’d love to hear from other Capricorns and see if this rings true for you :)

January 6, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 1 Comment

New Moon in Libra – Setting a direction for the month

Today we have moved on to a dark moon or new moon in Libra. This is the start of a month-long lunar cycle, the time when the seeds are sown for whatever will come into fruition during the cycle. While the moon will not stay in Libra the entire time, the sign that the moon is in at the new moon sets the stage for the lunar cycle – it represents the energy that is available while the seeds are being sown, to use one metaphor.

The energy in this new moon cycle is about balance, harmony, and beauty and relationships with others. Partnerships of all kinds are highlighted, whether lovers, business partners, clients, or other ventures. Conscious attention to the new moon energy can be helpful in setting a focus for the month, and this is the perfect time to form an intention. But how do you go about it?

One way is to simply think about these areas of your life and what you’d like to achieve. I find that a one-month time period is a good length of time to make reasonable progress. Smaller projects can be finished, and longer goals can still be broken down into a more specific focus for a month.

Another way is to look at your astrological chart and see what house your moon is currently in – not where it was when you were born, but where it is now. You can determine this by either progressing your chart or by looking up the specific degree of Libra that the moon is in and then locating that position on your birth chart. The house that your moon is in also provides some of the energy for what part of your life this cycle may affect most.

If you’re a tarot reader, you can use the tarot to help provide insight. This is a more specific approach; the lunar information tells you what kinds of energies are available, while the tarot tells you specifically how you can use them in the coming month. For example, let’s say I draw a card for this coming month and receive the Two of Pentacles. Right away I may notice that there is a duality expressed in the card that nicely mirrors the balance and self-other theme of Libra. We are in the suit of Pentacles, so my attention is focused on matters of health, money, possessions, or work. Looking more closely at the card, the juggling process seems unsustainable; while it could be argued to be in balance, it is not likely to stay that way over the long-term.

Putting the two together, I’d say there is an emotional need this month to bring competing priorities into better balance and have them become more harmonious. Libra suggests not dropping one of these two Pentacles altogether, but finding a more long-term, sustainable way of integrating them so as to not be under so much constant stress. At the new moon, the Sun and the Moon are in opposition, an aspect that produces stresses that can be positively resolved if the inner and outer self can be reconciled. Similarly, the combination of Libra and the Two of Pentacles suggests that two things are currently coming into conflict that can be brought into better harmony – and that I need to focus on the areas suggested by the suit.

If it’s immediately clear to me what the issue is (and with a short-term reading it usually is), I can go ahead and get started on my plan. It’s still only the new moon, so the best thing to do is rest and sow the seeds rather than jump right out and get started. If I need more information on what the best issue to work with is or more likely, how to get started, I can draw additional cards. It can be helpful when working with lunar cycles to set your intention in this way at the new moon, and then draw additional cards as the moon progresses through its phases, each of which have roles to play in the cycle and in completing your project. A full lunar cycle reading can be done at the start of the cycle, but I think it is more effective to do it as the lunar month moves along, drawing cards as close to the phases of interest as you can.

(For more detailed information on lunar cycle spreads, check out Original Tarot Spreads – Phases of the Moon)

October 17, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

Using lunar energy

Recent posts on astrology and tarot dealt with some pretty large-scale issues having to do with societal planets and national issues of health care. Let’s look now at something much closer to home – lunar energy. The moon is something we all can directly feel, and it’s energies fluctuate constantly. The Moon rules our emotional selves, and provides our connection to where we feel at home, security, nurturing, and our intuition.

These emotional energies have a great deal to do with how we react to things on a daily basis. Some days we feel more grounded than others, or more directed, or apathetic, or unstable. This has a lot to do with what sign the moon is in, as well as its phase. Throughout the course of a year, the combination of the two will never be the same, and in addition to its monthly cycle, the moon changes sign approximately every 2 and a half days.

People do react differently to the moon in different signs, depending on what sign their own moon is in, but there are some general similarities. If you follow the moon cycles over time, you can learn how you react to them, and when you’re likely to be irritable or calm. For example, I have trouble with Cancer moons if there is anything emotional going on – it’s like a doubling of my native Cancer moon. I’ve learned that if I seem to be crying for no reason or reacting overly emotionally, it’s probably a cancer moon. I never try to tackle an important emotional conversation during that time. Fortunately, I won’t have long to wait before the cheerful Leo energy arrives.

I keep a little desktop application on my computer called Lunabar that constantly tells me what sign and phase the moon is in, because I like to know what it’s doing, and here in the rainy Pacific NW, I can’t always see it. As a mediator, I deal a lot with people’s feelings and emotional selves, so it helps me to know what kind of energies are operating on any given day.

Let’s look at today – the Moon is in Libra, and is waning to its last, smallest sliver before the new moon. Right now, our emotional selves want everything to be in balance. Harmony, beauty, and comfort make us feel good, and we want to be on good terms with others. The waning moon is a good time to let go of something from the previous cycle, to release yesterday’s news, and to tie up loose ends before the next dark moon. If you’ve already done these things, then the Libra moon will tell you to relax and enjoy life – you’ve earned it.

On a practical note for me, this might be a good time to do a divorce mediation, because the parties would be more likely to value harmony in their relationships and the energy would be right to facilitate reaching closure and starting over. They would value an equitable division of resources and would be more willing to give and take than if the moon was in, say, Aries – which is all about me – or Cancer, which would tend to be very emotional. Libra is able to keep a certain amount of emotional detachment, which is helpful in this situation.

A business meeting might be good for the same reasons – it would be a good time to finish up contracts that were equitable and fair, on good terms. You would want this to be something you’d been working on that was mostly done, and you were just putting the finishing touches on it. Trying to do something difficult or complicated right now, or to start a big new cycle, might meet with some resistance. It’s not time for that yet, as the new moon has not yet arrived. People might not feel like working that hard – there’s a certain dissipation of emotional energy as the dark moon arrives. The energy in the meeting would likely be more toward finishing up easy, noncontroversial items. These are just a few examples from my everyday working life of how the moon affects what I do.

October 16, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

September Additions

This month I added a couple of sets of course materials, including a 7-week course on reversals, and a 4-week course on the Celtic Cross. I have modified these so that they are suitable for individual study, but they were originally designed for online courses. They could be used either for self-study or to teach in-person or on-line classes. Look for these on the Course Materials page.

On the Books in Progress page, I have added the long-awaited first installment of Astrology for Tarot Readers, including the Introduction, a chapter on the court cards, a chapter on the minor arcana that includes some new takes on numerology and planetary associations, and chapters on each of the 7 original planets of ancient astrology and how they are related to both modern and Renaissance tarot.

Still to come is a lengthy first chapter introducing the basic concepts of astrology to tarot readers – this is completely written, and is only being held up by some illustrations I am working on, so should be available sometime in October. If you’re completely new to astrology, you may want to wait for that chapter before reading the later ones. Also, I will be adding sections to Chapter 2 on the other planets and signs as they are expressed in astrology and tarot correspondances, and starting to add the later chapters illustrating how to blend astrology and tarot. Enjoy!

October 4, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

Pity poor Saturn… more on the health care debate

In the last post, I wanted to keep it simple and show how tarot could be used with just one aspect and one issue – which was already quite complex. However, it turns out there’s a lot more going on that just a Saturn-Uranus opposition. Saturn is in a quincunx with Neptune (which means 5 houses apart), which is a fairly tense and uncomfortable aspect. On top of that, in November Saturn will be heading into a square (3 houses apart) with Pluto, an even more difficult aspect.

This is no fun for our poor Saturn – representing the forces of authority, government, conservativism, and the status quo. All you liberals out there may be cheering, but the more threatened Saturn feels, the more tenaciously those who identify with these feelings may fight against change. Neptune is in Aquarius, which is one of those visionary combinations, and not incidentally ruled by Uranus. This is a time of ideals; there is a feeling of oneness, that anything could happen if we are not afraid to embrace and love one another. In terms of health care, this translates to an egalitarian vision of full coverage for all, equal treatment, and a triumph of humanitarian principles over capitalism. It’s not too surprising that this is stressing out Saturn in Virgo, a very practical-minded responsible combination who is probably wondering just how we’re going to pay for all this and whether everyone just has their heads in the clouds.

Neptune also brings an energy of dissolving boundaries, mysticism, and yes, illusion and manipulation. It may be hard for the average person to tell what is real, who’s telling the truth, what is illusion. Between Neptune and Uranus, there’s a lot of energy for change in unlimited ways, ways that may not be well-bounded and could cause a lot of dislocation before they’re over. But wait… we’re not done yet.

Next comes Pluto squaring Saturn, starting in November and heading well into 2010. Now we have a planet of deep transformative change challenging Saturn directly, not just in minor stressful aspects, but head-on. Pluto’s flirting with Sagittarius right now, but by the time of the square will be firmly back in Capricorn, which is normally Saturn’s comfort zone. Saturn, on the other hand, will be heading into indecisive Libra. Pluto just went direct after a period of retrograde motion, so it’s going to be bringing a lot of pressure to bear on the government for substantial change. This would be the type of powerful, transformative, thorough change that Pluto is known for, not just minor fiddling around the edges.

With all these powerful forces in play, it’s obvious that this health care situation is going to be fraught with difficulty on all sides. We have four heavy-weight planets, three seemingly lined up against Saturn, but two of those are retrograde and the other was until recently. Neptune will be going direct at the end of October, and Uranus in November – all that pent-up energy will be released just as the square with Pluto hits. Are we having fun yet?

So let’s try a tarot reading that’s a little bit different from the one we did yesterday. With all these challenging aspects and planets currently retrograde, I’m having a hard time believing that health care will get solved before Congress adjourns for the holidays. But let’s not make assumptions – we can draw two cards for the influence of each planet, one for 2009 and one for the 2010 session that runs approximately Jan-July. Using the Morgan-Greer:

Saturn 2009 – Knight of Cups
Uranus 2009 – Nine of Pentacles, reversed
Neptune 2009 – Ten of Pentacles
Pluto 2009 – Ten of Swords, reversed

Well, some serious end-of-suit cards there. The Knight of Cups appears to be searching for the Holy Grail of health care reform – working in good faith, idealistic, but knowing that he is searching for something he may never find. If this represents Saturn in the guise of Congress, they’re at least trying their best, and not without compassion and creativity. It is quite interesting that the one idealistic card appeared for Saturn, and the others are more down-to-earth or difficult. All three of the other planets are working to bring something to its end, with Uranus and Neptune focusing on the suit of Pentacles. The Nine of Pentacles in this deck is a particularly opulent looking woman, and Uranus may be focusing its energies on wealth disparities in the system.

The Ten of Pentacles is in part a card of legacies and institutions, as well as families. In this version of the card, two flags with five pentacles each bar the viewer’s way to a doorway, as if to prevent us from entering the house. Neptune may be working to dissolve the barriers in existing institutions and redistribute the wealth or disrupt the established order to make way for something new. Pluto manifesting as the 10 of Swords reversed feels a little like the death of 1000 cuts, which in the context of Congress is not encouraging. Looking at these four cards in a row, one gets the sense of society starting out somewhat naively in good faith, searching for the grail of a compassionate and idealistic health care system – then running into barriers related to money and established institutions, followed by a dismal and legalistic dismemberment of whatever is put forth. If they do manage to put an end to our current health care system this session, you can bet it won’t be pretty or the way anyone wanted it to end.

Saturn 2010 – Eight of Pentacles, reversed
Uranus 2010 – The Hierophant
Neptune 2010 – Six of Wands
Pluto 2010 – Three of Swords

I have to say, things look a lot better in 2010. Now the only reversed card is Saturn, representing the status quo and possibly the fact that Saturn goes retrograde in January and its influence may not be as strong. Even this card is somewhat encouraging, the Eight of Pentacles suggesting that those who represent this side will continue working and continue trying to be involved, even if they don’t prevail on all their issues. We are now moving backwards from the establishment 9 and 10 to the 8, representing real hard work.

Jupiter will be conjunct with Neptune early in the year, and then later with Uranus, possibly strengthening them and bringing them the more positive energy seen here. The forces of change may finally find their voice in the form of someone who can lead the public out of their current divisiveness and therefore rededicate Congress more strongly to its task. Neptune carries the wands of Victory, which also suggests better and more visionary leadership on this issue than is currently making itself known – together Uranus and Neptune look like an unstoppable force, able to prevail over the weakened Saturn. Lastly, Pluto – the Three of Swords, upright. In this position, I see pain, struggle – and eventual illumination after the storm. There is a third way, the way of transformation through ideas, suffering, and storm clouds.

Wish us luck – we’re going to need it :)  The next post in this series will focus on using astrology and tarot in a more personal situation – something you could do for yourself.

September 22, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Saturn-Uranus opposition and health care

Looking at planetary aspects now, one of the biggest things going on in the sky is the Saturn-Uranus opposition. This means that these two planets are exactly 180° apart. This opposition was exact about a week ago, but because these planets travel relatively slowly, it is still being felt. In addition, because of the retrograde motion of both planets, this is actually part of a larger pattern of 5 periodic Saturn-Uranus oppositions occurring from late 2008 (around the election) to 2010. We’ll start this post by discussing the astrological particulars of this opposition, and then add a little tarot and current events into the mix.

Any opposition between Saturn and Uranus can be thought of in simple terms as the forces of the status quo and structure (Saturn) vs. the forces of change and chaos (Uranus). Uranus is a planet of idealism, especially when it is in Pisces as it is now. There is a strong vision of change, of a better world, of willingness to embrace upheaval and chaos needed to bring this about – by forceful or unique means if necessary. In Pisces, this may be a time when hidden dreams or desires are expressed – things lurking under the surface of society that through a random or unexpected event can be brought to the forefront. Explosive public demonstrations may be triggered by repressed emotions and a need for change.

Saturn, on the other hand, represents the forces of authority, structure, limits, and conservative behavior – especially when it’s in practical Virgo, as it is now. Saturn in Virgo might agree that incremental changes could bring about improvements, and will focus on those details – but would never condone the instability of wholesale societal change. This would appear very threatening to a person who identifies more strongly with Saturn, as a complete abdication of responsibility and an unrealistic idealism.

An “aspect” between two planets refers to the angle they make in the sky, and an opposition is a particularly interesting one. Neither strictly beneficial nor entirely challenging, it can best be described as a tension between two forces that needs to be resolved. These two planets have medium-long orbits, and are therefore what is known as “societal” planets. While they do (especially Saturn) affect us personally over long cycles of our lifetimes, they also affect entire societies and generations. The last time these two planets came into opposition was in the 60s, which was a period of great social struggle and change in the US. This time, at least in the US, the struggle seems more centered around the government – the election, which was all about change, the economy, and health care.

When I saw this opposition recently, the first thing that popped into my head was the current struggle over health care issues in Congress and around the country. We certainly have the forces of the status quo (Republicans, insurance companies, pharmaceuticals) vs. those of change (Democrats, social activists). Virgo and Pisces are also both signs that rule houses related to health, making it not surprising that this issue should be reflected in this particular opposition.

Yet, in an opposition, it’s never as simple as the forces described above arrayed against each other, and we can see that here too. Doctors and hospitals – which one would expect to be aligned with Saturn/Virgo – are suffering from the status quo and are at least cautiously in favor of change. The question is, how much, and can they feel comfortable with the more radical proposals? Large and small businesses are in many ways in the same boat – the costs of health care are rising so fast that they see this as a key business challenge that needs to be resolved to maintain their competitiveness and provide for their employees, but they fear both massive, unpredictable change in the system and the 12th house consequences of allowing this threat to grow unseen and undercover without being addressed. Activists feel both a need for change (Uranus) and a responsibility to provide for everyone (Saturn, but also idealistic Uranus).

So here we are with an astrological opposition pretty well describing the current status of the health care debate in the US. What kinds of insights can the tarot bring to this debate? Here we can work at either an individual or a societal level, although the extent to which we can affect the societal debate is more limited. If I were a Congressperson, perhaps one of the “Gang of 10” working on this issue, I might be tempted to look at it like this:

Card 1: What is the most important fear or concern of the Saturn/Status Quo forces that I need to address?
Card 2: What is the most valuable proposal from the Saturn/Status Quo forces that I need to include in the package?
Card 3: What is the most important ideal of the Uranus/Change forces that I need to address?
Card 4: What is the most valuable proposal from the Uranus/Change forces that I need to include in the package?

As an individual, one could always draw cards to look at the various alternatives being proposed and get some idea how they might work out. This could be valuable if, like most of us, we really have no idea whether some of the ideas being proposed might work and how they will affect us. There is quite reasonable fear of making the wrong choice, and an almost impossible task of understanding what the consequences really might be, through just trying to reason it out. Hence, the added insight that a tarot reading might bring could be quite valuable. The only caveat to doing this kind of reading is the utter unpredictability of Uranus, meaning that what ultimately gets voted on could change at the last minute as inspiration, idealism, or accident – perhaps buried in subconscious Pisces – strikes in the midst of last-minute negotiations.

So let’s try the reading above. Using the World Spirit deck, I received:

Card 1 – Justice
Card 2 – 10 of Cups
Card 3 – Sibyl of Cups, reversed (Queen of Cups)
Card 4 – Ace of Wands

11 JusticeThat first card is powerful – it suggests to me that those who prefer the status quo have some truly fundamental beliefs at stake here. They may fear upsetting the current system – getting things so far out of balance that we’ll never recover our equilibrium. They may worry that we don’t really know what we’re doing – we’re working in a system where we really can’t see all the consequences of our choices. They may prefer the system we have, which isn’t necessarily fair to individuals but serves constitutional principles of individual responsibility and freedom from government intrusion. It’s interesting for me to contemplate how differently this card would have been read had it been on the other side of this debate, but it’s a good reminder that the forces of the status quo have sincere, fundamental principles involved in this debate.

Tens are cards of the end of a cycle, but also of celebrating what you have built, especially in the emotional suit of Cups. This is a very positive card, and it suggests that anyone working on this debate needs to understand and appreciate what Americans and what the Saturn folks love and celebrate about the current system, what makes them feel emotionally attached to it (as they so clearly are) – and not take that part away in the new proposals. There has been a lot of negativity in the current debate on both sides, and if the center could find a way to express gratitude, value, and celebration of the good parts of our system and make it clear that they’re incorporating those in, they may stand a much better chance of relieving folks’ anxiety.

The Sibyl of Cups reversed is an interesting way to express an ideal. In many ways, this is a very Piscean issue – she is the most watery of the Cups courts, and is often associated with Pisces, the sign that Uranus is currently in. This suggests to me hidden, deeply emotional issues about illness, incarceration, addiction, and helplessness that are shaping the debate on the side of the forces of change, and the terrible burden of emotions that this places on nurturers who feel this pain as deeply as does the Sibyl of Cups. These are all 12th house issues, ruled by Pisces. With our demographics changing so that many families have elders in a not-too-friendly health care system at the same time as we ourselves are beginning to experience more serious health issues, fears about being in a nursing home, end-of-life issues, serious illnesses, and medications are coming to the fore. These emotions are difficult to express but are nevertheless key to the need for change – the need for universal coverage, compassionate end-of-life care, and support for families. These fears are coming out in repressed and not necessarily direct or positive ways – further complicating the debate. Yet, they are the most important issues driving those who feel the need for change – love, compassion, the relationships among us as a society, along with fear of illness and being trapped alone and helpless in a hospital or nursing home by the current system.

The Ace of Wands as a proposal is on its face an idealistic, enthusiastic card that says – start completely over! Build something new! Be creative and build what you want from the ground up. Of course, this contrasts directly with the Ten of Cups, not only elementally, but one is the beginning of a suit and the other is the end of a suit. Yet, numerologically speaking, 10 = 1. Ten is the number of transition and really leads to a new beginning, even though it is the final culmination of a suit. This is the paradox of 10s in tarot that is the key to resolving the opposition – which itself is a tension between the old and the new. This card says – let the forces of the Status Quo retain all that is best and celebrated about the old system, while bringing in fresh new ideas of Change that can burn away what doesn’t work from the old and replace it with something entirely different. Don’t be afraid to be bold about replacing what didn’t work – at the same time, don’t throw out the best of what was.

So now our Congressmen have the task of identifying the best of the old and the exciting of the new :)

September 21, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 5 Comments