Friday, February 1, 2013

Tarot Blog Hop Master List

If you get lost on the Imbolc Tarot Blog Hop, here's a list with links to help you get back on track.

Imbolc Blog Hop--Hey, World, I'm Pregnant!

This is the Imbolc/Groundhog Day/Candlemas round of the Tarot Blog Hop, a collection of readings and interpretation by a group of tarot specialists on a particular topic. You may have gotten here from the blog of Donna L. Faber, or you may have arrived in reverse from the writing of Krysten Barnes. In either case, welcome aboard!

Here is what we're all talking about this time: This Hop is done in honor of either the Goddess Brighide/Bridget, or the lovely Ground Hog who is part of the cultural lore in many countries...either way, the festival has the same resonance. "Imbolc" or "Imbolg", the name of this festival in Celtic countries where it originated, means "in the belly" and refers to the season where sheep and goats are carrying their young, the first domesticated mammals to be born in early spring, and therefore are, or will soon be, lactating. Whether you are honoring the Triple Goddess Brighid in your own festival, or simply looking to Nature and Spring to emerge, the concept here is the same--the topic for this Hop is, "What is "in your Belly"? What do you wish to give birth to, to nurture, during this new season? What is the Poet, the Healer, the Maker, within you longing to do, to Become?"  You may not celebrate Imbolc, Candlemas, or Groundhog Day at all. But, oddly enough, on this particular festival, with the emergence of Spring from Winter's blast, each and every one of us has something "in the belly", something in gestation, something we came out of the Dark of Winter holding, something to which we will give birth as the Spring comes forth. Doesn't matter if, like me, you're way way too old to have progeny--you're giving birth to something. And maybe, at this point in time, you don't know exactly what that might be. So--let's take a look and see "what's in the cards" for your new arrival. What's in the belly for you, and how do you propose to birth it and raise it and bring it to maturity?

Well, let's see what the oracles will tell us. Since this festival is one which is celebrated in many different cultures for many different reasons, I am going to "mix and match" my divination tools in order to get different perspectives on the question....We'll begin, in honor of Brighid, with one of the Celtic Ogham runes, and then, in respect for the traditional nature of the Blog Hop, use a Tarot card, and finally, for the inclusion of those for whom this is not a religious festival but simply a seasonal attribution such as "Ground Hog Day", we'll use a playing card, interpreted in the manner of Irish Gypsy lore. And three different questions, one for each tool. Since I am myself honoring the feast of Imbolc at this season, my questions and interpretations will relate to the three faces of the Goddess Brighide, the Poet, the Smith, and the Healer. So--let's see what the cards have to tell us.

1) What am I creating/birthing at this season? (The Poet's Card)

Our card, from The Celtic Tree Oracle by Liz and Colin Murray, is Huathe, the Hawthorne. It answers our question, thus: "You have need to nurture yourself within, to protect your inner realm, because you will be giving birth to new ideas, new words, new thoughts. The Hawthorne, in the Ogham, represents a period of restraint, of concentrating on nourishing and nurturing the Inner Self. You will not be able to bring forth Poesy, Creativity, new ideas and concepts, unless you cherish and nurture your Self first." So--we may not have gotten a specific answer to WHAT we are creating or birthing, but we are being told that it is an Inner Child, and that it will come forth from us in its own due time if we simply wait for its gestation to be complete.

2) What shall I be in the process of Making? (The Smith's Card)

Here, from the Haindl Tarot, we have the Hanged Man, whose position in this reading might, at first, seem a bit odd. We had just asked, "What will we be making?" and the answer seems to be "Nothing. Hang there and wait." But there is another possible interpretation of this card. Don't forget that when Odin "sacrificed himself to himself" on the World Tree, he didn't understand what he was going to receive--but his period of stillness gave birth, albeit through sacrifice, to the Runes, and he "made" an entire system through simply hanging, waiting, and then thinking. This card goes well with the preceding card, to remind us that "Crafting" or "Making" does not have to be done with the hands but can be done with the mind. We have a great tendency, we humans, to believe that a person, including ourselves, who is sitting and thinking and not doing something visible and physical is "wasting time". This card is telling us that the opposite is true--in this case, in order to be in the "process of Making", we will need to "Be Still".

3. What will I be Healing by this New Birth? (The Healer's Card)
Using a deck of playing cards, I received the Ace of Clubs. All the Aces represent New Beginnings, and the Clubs in particular represent material enterprises, so this card in this position represents the "healing" of a material difficulty, and this healing will be the direct result of that to which we are about to give birth, which will be some kind of creative process obtained by waiting in stillness and listening to the Inner Child, and then using the faculties of speech, creativity, or writing to produce Poesy of whatever kind.

I cannot help thinking, looking at these three cards, of the process of giving birth, by words selected after long and silent solitary thought, to relationship healing with someone with whom we have had "material difficulty". At least, that is what it is saying to me, and I trust perhaps you have an interpretation of your own. Hopefully you will be able to gestate and birth that which speaks to you, and the Season of Light will illuminate your efforts.

From this blog, please go on to the blog of Krysten Barnes, if you haven't been there yet, or to Donna L. Faber's blog, if you're going widdershins. And if you get lost, there's a Master List to give you a hand at any time. Happy Groundhog Day, Happy Imbolc, Happy Candlemas, and happy birth day!