Friday, September 22, 2017

Tarot Blog Hop Mabon 2017: Dining With Deity



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Welcome to the Tarot Blog Hop celebrating Mabon/Harvest Home 2017. Our wonderful Wrangler, Kiss Boglárka, and her co-Wrangler, Jay Cassels, have come up with a topic that is right up my alley and amazingly pertinent to this festival. Here's an overview:

"At Mabon, we can enjoy the harvest of what we have sown, giving thanks for what we have – and profiting of it as much as we can, also, profiting of what Nature gives us. If we just think of how much sunshine has nurtured and grown our harvest into what it is, and yes, we can benefit from all that vital power and energy of the sunshine if we prepare and eat food with love and respect – and this sunshine will literally turn into Light in us. And do not forget, Light becomes a blessing in those who share it with others" And therefore, to celebrate the Harvest of Light, we were invited to share a card or cards from the deck which we considered to be a representative of the bounty of the harvest, and suggest a recipe that Being would cook, and a sacred way it might be done, so that the bounty of life and the celebration of Light could be shared. And so, here's my suggestion:





My primary Goddess-Mother is Brighid of the Celts, and She is the Daughter of Cups in my primary Tarot deck, the Haindl Tarot. And when I think of her symbolism, I think of the Three Fires of Brighid, Fire in the Head, Fire in the Heart, Fire in the Hands, which are explained as Knowledge, Passion, and Creative Ability. So--fire for cooking, and fire for thinking and fire of caring and sharing...we're going to make an Irish dish that represents the bounty of the Waters, the Land, and the Sky, the three Realms or the three elemental energies of the Celts. So--Let's start with an appetizer of Smoked Salmon and make a  main dish of  Roast Goose, served with Colcannon, and serve it with a lovely bottle of Irish Whiskey and some Irish Coffee to finish. In order to prepare the meal in a sacred and thankful way, one does the cooking in a kitchen where candles burn and an herbal incense burns, and one makes offering to the Gods of all the finished foods on one's sacred offering plate, and toasts Them with Irish Coffee.

And here's the recipe for that Colcannon, which combines Land and Sea in some amazing ways and speaks to the soul of Irish cooking:




3 cups Irish potatoes, new ones with the skin on
1 cup chopped cabbage
1 cluster of green onions, chopped
1 quarter pound of bacon
Butter
Sour cream
Irish whiskey

Cook the new potatoes, with skins on, in a pot of water which just covers them, along with the chopped cabbage and green onions. While they are cooking, let the bacon cook to a light brown. When the potatoes are done, mash them in a bowl with about one stick of soft butter, a half-cup of Irish whiskey, and a cup of sour cream. Add the chopped bacon, stir thoroughly, and place on very low heat for 30 minutes to mix the flavors. Serve with your roast goose and enjoy your smoked salmon as a side dish/appetizer, and you eat and honor the return of light, the three realms, and the Gods who have given us the gift of life, food, and harvest home. Blessings of the Light to you!



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Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Tarot Blog Hop, Lughnassadh 2017: How I Honor And Respect My Tarot and Other Divination Tools


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I use my Haindl Tarot, my Celtic Ogham Staves, and my self-created Faery-Fire Oracle in tandem with one another when I do my work as a House Reader at Crone's Hollow. And I have discovered, from the Spirits of the Speakers (my term for the inner wraith that provides the information) that there is a very clear path to showing honor and respect for these spiritual gifts, and that I must not fail to reverence what is of spirit...soooo...here's how we do that.

1) Each and every time I set up for my shift of readings, each and every day, when the cards are laid out, there is a blessing I do beginning with sprinkling sacred scent for purification, then incense for charging, then the calling in of my Deities and the Wraith. I then smudge the entire area to focus the energy and clear out unwanted distractions.

2) Before I take my first client, I draw one card for my Self to let me know what energy to concentrate on this day, and one other card for my Self to let me know what to beware of, avoid, or watch out for. This focuses my energy for the day.

3) I do not permit the client to tell me an exact question. I ask that they will think deeply about the things they want to know, silently within themselves, and then I tell them what question each set of cards will answer, beginning with the first sett which tells the client "What do I need to KNOW about this circumstance that I do not now know?" and goes on from there with a new question for each individual draw. In this way, I respect the cards by not permitting my own inner thoughts and feelings about their question or situation influence my interpretation--instead, I don't know enough to have a personal opinion, so when I do the interpretation, it is the cards that are speaking, not my Self.

4) I do not permit any money to change hands until the reading is done, and I request that the client make an offering in my cash bowl to Fortuna in thanksgiving--not a tip, it is just where I ask them to place the money. I want it clear to them that I am only an interpreter and a guide, not the source of their response.

5) After each client leaves, I once again cleanse and charge the space before I take the next client. No leftover energy is present to influence the next draw. Each client begins in a clear and sacred space.

It has been very very interesting for me to focus on this work and explain to myself and to you, my readers, how I choose to honor the cards. May we all give joy and thanks for what we are permitted to do, and may we all continue to do it. Walk in beauty!!


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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Tarot Blog Hop, Litha 2017-- A Being "Of Two Minds"....


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This Hop celebrates the contest between the Oak King, Cernunnos, the Green Man, who is God of the Waxing Year and fertilizes the land with plants and babies in women's wombs, etc., and his “Tanist”, or chosen replacement, Lugh, the Holly King, or Red God, who brings the Harvest and creates the Waning Year by means of blood sacrifice of animals so there will be meat, reaping the grain and vegetables and plants, and otherwise clearing the fertile ground and taking the results of the Green Man's cycle of fertility, making it the Red God's cycle of harvesting. It is important in the understanding of this Lore to realize that the two Deities here represented are actually seen as one God, two Faces of the same Being, two aspects of life, and actually perform the combat between Oak and Holly as a necessary adaptation of their own Being, with the full understanding of the necessity of both a waxing and a waning year, planting and harvesting, and the joy of creation connected with the necessity of using that creation. And so, my friends, as the Oak King and the Holly King are two aspects of the same being, so we will use our Tarot cards to explore and explain the duality of our own natures. Who, indeed, is your “other Self”, your “Tanist”? How is it that you are, actually, of “two minds”? And how does that affect your life?

Of My Waxing Mind--- My usual Significator in the deck I use most often, the Haindl Tarot, is the Daughter of Cups, my primary Goddess, Brighid of the Three Fires:

  She represents the three aspects of living that I invoke most often in my day-to-day working of my own life, and my assistance through readings to others--these aspects are Poesy, Smithcraft, and Healing, also known as Fire in the Head, Fire in the Hands, Fire in the Heart. The Triple Fires of Brigid resonate with me in my own activities and in my knowledge of the triplicity of all actions in life--first you know and learn, then you care and focus, and then you decide what to do. And so this card represents to me all the aspects of "planting the seeds" of each and every action I intend, and letting me know what, and why, and then how.
*******
Of My Waning Mind-- My "Other Half", my Tanist, the half of my Being that is not part of the focus and planning and preparation for seeding the land, is represented here by the Mother of Swords, Nut/Nuit, the Egyptian Goddess of the Shadowed Night.



Nuit's energy is that of the night sky, the shadows that cloak all the light of day in darkness. She is that which represents the pause for reflection, the ceasing activity to contemplate the next step, the peace of sleep and the rest and reawakening that comes with Death. And yet--it is the darkness of Nuit that makes it possible for us to see the stars, gleaming one at a time through the endless cloak of darkness, each of them with its own light, name, and meaning---and that, my friends, is the energy of my Other Half, my Tanist. I never succeed at creating that which I wish to invoke without having to take into account all the other details that only present themselves when I believe my work is finished and I can now rest. Drawing away from the activity of Brighid's Flame makes it possible for me to contemplate my actions in the soft darkness of Nuit's silence and shadows....and in so doing, I always find something that I did not know was going to be there, something that is an intrinsic part of what has been created but that could never be noticed or recognized or put into play until I believed my works were done and I might rest. Nuit is the bringer of the darkness without which we would never be able to notice or manifest what is truly in the light. And she is always the other half of all I believe Brighid has guided me to do.
******

And so, to the directions and elements that influence, and are influenced by, my Waxing and Waning Being. Mind, Will, Action, Intuition, and Spirit manifest for me with the following cards this time around:

Mind/Air:
The Eight of Stones, Knowledge, connected to Brighid's Fire in the Head as I study and immerse myself in new ideas, and to Nuit's silent shadows as I always realize that anything I learn usually leaves me with more questions than answers, so this one is never finished, just constantly mutating and going in a different direction.

Will/Fire:
The image on the card fits perfectly with my understanding of the two facets of my Will--it's not just "what do I Will" as Brighid's Fire in the Heart represents, but it is also, "But what do I Need To Do", which is not at all the same thing, as Nuit shows in the shadows that what I want might not be the right way to proceed. We have the Strength of Eve in the Garden, knowing she must defeat the Serpent, but unwilling to harm him or become evil as he was supposed to be. So for this one--there are always more than two answers.

Action/Earth:
No surprises here, because the "Devil", whose name in Hebrew was "Ha-Shatan", is literally "The Obstacle" and represents all the many boulders, corners, dead ends and detours in the road we try to map for ourselves. Brighid's Flame has given me "Fire In The Hands", as in, "You need to and want to do THIS", but Nuit's starlight and darkening shadows will always remind me that nothing is that simple and nothing goes the way you want it to the first time....So--I expect the obstacles, and if I can, I make them part of the journey. But I keep going....

Intuition/Water


Not at all strange to me that the card I drew for Water is a Fire card--because, for me, Courage is as much intuitive knowledge as it is the bravery to act in a certain way. I completely identify Fire with Water and vice-versa, because as far as my own life goes, what I wish and desire is always moderated by my inner voice whispering of emotion and intuition. Here my two Goddesses work in harmony, as Brighid inspires me with passion and intent, and Nuit shows me the hidden mysteries of what I expect to accomplish and how much more convoluted is my Will than I am consciously aware.

Wisdom/Spirit
And here we have a final result of all my seeding, sowing, thinking, harvesting, and doing--simply put, the concept of constant and repeated change, the knowledge that nothing remains the same and nothing is as simple as it looks, and the awareness that I will never reach the end of the journey, just a different phase thereof. And for me, knowing the journey is the destination IS Wisdom. And I do keep learning that, from all the aspects of my Two Beings.

Many Litha blessings to you all, and may your own journey, planting and harvest, be productive and rewarding. Blessed Be!


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Tarot Blog Hop, Litha 2017-- Master List

Here is the list of all participants in the 2017 Litha Blog Hop, with links to their blog entries. Neighbors of each participant can here find the permalinks to post on your own blog entry. Please enjoy your journey through the Hop:


Alison Coals: http://alisonsalembic.blogspot.com/2017/06/tarot-blog-hop-summer-solstice-2017.html


Arwen Lynch Poe: http://tarotbyarwen.com/19084/tarotbloghoplitha2017/


Jay Cassels: http://metaphysicalangels.co.uk/thb10


Chloe McCracken: http://www.innerwhispers.co.uk/of-two-minds-how-about-four/ 






Monday, May 1, 2017

Tarot Blog Hop, Bealteine 2017: Tarot AND.....







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So, my friends. here is the 2017 Bealteine Tarot Blog Hop....our charming Wrangler, Arwen Lynch Poe, has asked us to respond to the question, ""Do you combine Tarot with any other divination system? Why or why not?"  I find this topic totally engrossing and exceptionally useful to me, since indeed I do work with three different oracles (at a minimum) when I am doing readings. And my reasons are as follows....

There is quite a range of reasons why people come in to get a reading, but in my Druidic background, as well as my connection to Brighid as Her Priestess, I do have a tendency to group the kinds of readings that people request into the context of the Three Realms as Druidry denotes them, Land, Sea, and Sky, or Body, Mind, and Spirit...and my hope for my clients is that we will, together, work the reading so that they may go away feeling as if they are able to deal with one of the Three Fires of Brighid to create their desired end, with either Fire in the Head (Poetry), Fire in the Hands (Smithcraft), or Fire in the Heart (Healing). And the three tools I use work to this end.

My own creation, the Faery-Fire Oracle, is based on the Nine Realms of the Sidhe, relating to nine aspects of human personality, and the nine stages of life. And so this one works really well for things where the client needs clarity about what is going on within the Self. Fire in the Heart is Inner Health and Well-Being. It is knowing what is going on within your own heart and mind, and it is creating whatever you need to do to achieve your desired end regardless of circumstances. And so, this is the first tool I explain to the client.

The Tarot itself is a tool with great subtlety, much detail, and many ramifications available in any circumstance. I consider it the paramount oracle for dealing with issues concerning the outside world of the client, including family, relationships, job, home, money, friends, and all the other "outside stuff" that is actually the foundation upon which of us builds our personal lives. It is a useful tool to create for us "Fire In The Head", i.e. awareness and knowledge and ideas about how to deal with the ramifications of life.

The third tool I use is the Celtic Tree Runes, the Ogham, in the Beith-Luis-Nion arrangement. Because of the energy of the trees as the year proceeds from Birch to Yew, this tool can give the client specific information about the energy of The Future, what kinds of energies are coming forward and what to do more of or less of to open the Gate of Fate. As the client looks at the tools laid out on the table, he or she chooses which one or ones might best fit the context of their desired information.

And just as an example, since this Hop celebrates Bealteine, I am going to do a draw for all of us to look at. There will be one card drawn from each tool, to respond to the question, "In the Bealteine Fire, which burns with love and inner flame of passion, what is it I need to know and experience to assist me to move forward with New Life?"

And so...here we go.



Faery-Fire Oracle: Queen of Passion's Flame. Her interpretation: 
The Faeries Say: You are a passionate person in every sense of the word. Sometimes that might put you at odds with others, and sometimes that might make you feel as if you are standing alone in some situations. But there is one thing to remember here. Your passion for life and for the things that matter to you is what sets you apart from every other person on the planet, and your passionate nature in relationships means no one is indifferent to you, and that no relationship in your life is unimportant.



 
Haindl Tarot: Six of Cups: Interpretation: You need to be more powerful, directing the flow rather than following. Look at your past as a repository of wisdom to be applied judiciously in the present.  Then use this as motivation for change. Make the very best use of hindsight, employing new strategies and trying new angles on these recurring issues.







      















Celtic Ogham, Gort/Ivy: The Spiral To Center: Interpretation: Look within your Self to know the tools with which the Universe will create your Future. It is necessary that you understand and accept all the details of your own personality, and choose to use these as tools to create your future.

And so, friends, there you have it. Tarot---AND. Body, Mind, and Spirit. Walk in Beauty!






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Monday, March 20, 2017

Tarot Blog Hop Ostara 2017--The Sun Also Rises...









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Today is the Spring Equinox in the Northern Hemisphere, and the balance of the light and dark is the image of the concept of Spring, which contains the representation of Aries, the dark and light faces of the Sun God Ra, and the developing child in the womb of Mother Earth, the Empress. This is a day when one may do a very specialized three-card reading, based on not just Astrological Decans and Tarot Images, but the focus of the actual season, weather, and outside environment in which each of us lives. And so--


The First Card: Aries and the Blood-God, Mars: What is the fire of my passion and the way in which my heart burns for my own Will? The card that represents this energy in the Haindl Tarot is the Ace of Wands, the representation of the Fire of the Sun rising in the East, the beginning of the light we shine on the intentions of every day, every season, and every personal journey into the future. Use this card and make an offering of Flame in your sacred space, and do a focused Working, a Meditation which requests of the Guides to show you, to enLIGHTEN you, if you will, as to what is your True Will in this iteration, what do you, must you, Will you, focus upon and seek to complete in this season?

The Second Card:  Aries and the Light of Ra : What will be the deepest and most substantial energy of the season to come in my own Stream of Life? The card connected with this energy in the Haindl Tarot is the King of Swords, Master of Fire: Ra, the Lord of Light. The Sword is the energy of Fire of Air, that which makes it possible for us to choose the most direct way of illuminating our Path, as well as understanding that this is the time in our lives when our actions, our intentions, and our own iteration of our Being, will come into the Light and cannot be disguised, either from our Selves or from the world around us. It is time to shine a Light on all that we intend, create, and promise to our Selves, and be certain that this is truly who we are and where we wish to go. In your Working, keeping in mind what was shown to you in your previous meditation, focus now on how to bring your Will into the Light, and especially how to illuminate those parts of your own Being which you do not choose to recognize. Every step on the path will bring you clarity, so do not refuse to examine anything which the Light of Ra chooses to illuminate for you. It is all important to your journey.

The Third Card: The Empress. Knowing my own Will and illuminating my Path, to what will I give birth by the end of this season? This is the place to give offering in honor of your Guides and God/Dess, so that you know not only what you intend to illuminate and develop, but what you intend to do with it. At this time, go outside and make an offering to Mother Earth--water for plants, seed for birds, some other kind of direct interaction with Her Ladyship. And you will feel yourself begin to grow within, to acknowledge your own ability to give Birth to that which you wish to see in your own life. And you will be guided by our Mother Earth in your journey, as long as you make certain to pay Her respect and honor.

Blessings on your Journey. Magic is Afoot--Walk in Beauty!



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Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Tarot Blog Hop, Imbolc 2017: Planting the Seeds of Change--It's All ACES!



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And here we have it, the beginning of the new growth of our 2017 Spring Season...so, what will be the energies of this season, and what are we growing here? Well....beginnings start with zero, as we buried the past and invoked the future at the Winter Solstice, and then we decide what "one" is, as we choose and plant the seeds of our new growth... And so, here ya go:

Growth of Mind:
Air is the source of the word 'inspiration', which literally means "to breathe in". And our first seed of change must be a decision--about what do I need to think here and on what must I focus?

Growth of Will: 
Fire is the burning desire to do what we Will, the concept of passionate dedication. In this "light". we see the path before us, as we decide, of all those thoughts, which one is our Flame?

Growth of Understanding:
In our emotions and feelings is the place where we nurture our desires and come up with the reasons why things matter to us. And without that focus, we cannot decide what to do about things, but when we fill the Cup of our love and care with our Intent, we can create the potion of action.

Growth of Being:


And so, finally, here we are at the place where we manifest what we have thought, desired, and nurtured with our cardinal abilities. And so, now, the cold, firm foundation of real change is being built in our destiny. We have created our reality, by thought, will, desire, and action. And for us, now, the future is planted and determined...and it really IS "all Aces"!


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