Tarot Puzzle (Majors)


2. Success, self-assertion

4. Conscious awareness

8. Introspection, solitude

9. Relationship, personal beliefs

11. Education, conformity

13. Spontaneity

14. Inner calling, renewal

15. Balance, alchemy

17. Transition, ending

19. Enlightenment, creativity

21. Achievement, completion

22. Inspiration, serenity



1. Turning point, destiny

3. Mystery

5. Bondage, addictions

6. Patience, compassion

7. Fear, illusion

10. Revelation, sudden change

12. Letting go, sacrifice

16. Authority, regulation

18. Abundance, nature & nurture

20. Responsibility, cause & effect

Tarot Symbolism – That Monkey is always distorting my truth!

By Andrew McGregor

A little while back I wrote a post about what to do when you get lost in a reading or don’t know what a card means. This week it happened to me in pretty stellar fashion so I thought I’d share how I got myself out of the block.

I was reading for a client recently about how to deal with an institution. It was a reading all about advocating for their own rights in the face of being processed and not having their story heard. I am sure we have all run up against the machine of bureaucracy when trying to sort out problems with big companies. I get really frustrated when the person on the other end of the line says, “The computer won’t let me do that.” It may be true, but it sure doesn’t make me happy to hear it.

On to the Monkey business in this story

The Magician appeared in this reading to talk about actions to be taken to get the best results. If you look at the Magician in the Thoth deck you will find a monkey hanging out with him. You might have to look close in some variations as he is sneaking around in the background. Crowley, in the book for this deck, says of the ape that this little fella’s job is to distort the word of God. The Magician speaks the word of God and his primate cousin distorts it so that the truth is hidden. The whole business is like playing broken telephone.

I don’t often find myself stuck on a card these days. I ran through the common meanings that often surface with this card – exerting your will, balancing inside yourself, using truth and illusion to achieve your results, or the persons power to manifest things. BUT… the Monkey just kept staring at me. Perhaps its because Monkeys stole my lunch once but I just started to get a bad feeling about it. I tried to think it out to no avail, so finally I asked him straight out. The conversation went something like this:

“Okay Monkey Man is the client not being clear in their communication?”
“Oook, ook”
“Two ‘ooks’ for yes, one for no?” I asked.
“Ooo aaaahhhh”
“Okay I am on the wrong track, are their emotions getting in the way?”
“Haaa haaa”
Starting to feel a bit silly for talking to a picture of a Monkey I thought “Okay you are being too heady about all this.”
Out loud I asked politely “What do you have to say in this reading Mr. Cynocephalus Ape?”
In a charming voice the answer came “You are not hearing what I have to say, because they are not hearing what she has to say.”

So there it was, the institution was distorting the communication between my client and their service provider. This was something I knew about dealing with, and luckily, the card itself conveyed the solution. The magician is the master of truth and illusion, and as such, knows when he is not being understood. By accepting the reality of the broken telephone, the client could focus on checking the feedback loop to ensure accurate communication. It’s a perfect setting for asking the question like “Can you repeat back to me what you heard me say?” and other techniques like it to get the wax out of the ears, or in this case the institution out of the way, and get on to communicating as two people intent on finding a workable solution to the problems at hand.

Oooook Ooook…

Got some monkeyshines of your own to share? Jump in by posting a comment.


Desperate Planning – Thoth Tarot

By Odyn PenDragon

We humans (animals) tend to perceive structure (eye, ear, etc.), and from those, many tend to project from that a desire for some fantasy of “pattern”, and even further, the fantasy of “design”. Some passively accept this “design” model; but many others go further to then fantasize that there MUST BE A “DESIGNER”.

This Search-Desire for “A Designer” takes on many fascinating models, which unfortunately for many humans has produced the Fantasy of “A God”. Even my legacy-organization The Freemasons attempted a ‘renaming’ of that method by the term “The Grand Architect” — a desperate attempt to separate the “Great Designer” metaphor from the stupid ‘Control Freak’ monster they saw destroying the idea. But even they made a miss by clinging on to some ‘Grand Planner-Coordinator’ metaphor mixed in with some idea of centralized ‘control’.

Return to the ‘simplified’ method of ‘the’ YIN-YANG process: Enfolding & Unfolding. Sub-Atomic Processes enfold into Atomic Structure, and thereby unfold unto some ‘endurance’. Atomic Structure enfolds-combines into Molecular Structure, and thereby unfolds unto some further ‘endurance’ for those otherwise virtual sub-atomic ‘particles’. Molecules enfold into Cellular Structures, which even further unfold the ‘endurance’ of those very virtual sub-atomic ‘particles’ so deeply resident in the now growing complex structure. This “ladder” continues to cascade unto more complex structuring by serial enfoldings-combinations of the scale elements, and thus further unfolding of ‘endurance’.

Does this process describe “pattern”? Yes, according to our perception. Does this process describe “order” and/or “design”? Not necessarily ! The above described processes do not require any imaginary “Grand Planner”. Just because some “sentient being” perceives pattern and then projects a preconceived notion that such pattern MUST involve so-called “intelligent design”, is no proof of such a “Grand Planner”. It is simply proof of The Prover’s Obsession with their Model of Control. This all must, must, must make sense, yea?

This is where many make a miss in interpreting Atu III: The Empress. “She” is the Pure Happenings, which precede all considerations of the desperate attempts of all so-called ‘cognizant entities’ to make sense of the perceived patterns; and precedes the phase of Atu IV: The Emperor, who then attempts to configure his world as “Ruler” — ironically, “ruler” = “measurer”, “interpreter”. This newly-enthroned Emperor-of-one’s-own-empire MUST evaluate, coordinate, consolidate the vast array of otherwise non-sensical data into some semblance of order. The poor fool is now entirely dependant upon the ‘instructions-from-above’, to properly construct the empire.

This is here the danger of Atu V: The Hierophant. This figure has the awesome responsibility to properly instruct the Young Emperor on how to construct and conduct His Empire. If this figure-head has been poisoned with some Dæmon of Deception, the Young Emperor is now summarily cursed with the same poison, and the Empire is summarily distorted into that configuration. And this Hierophant does not get simple pass for ‘misunderstanding’. To achieve the Role of An Hierophant is not a light matter, and to bring poison to all the Young Emperors is HIGH CRIME. The simple Emperion of one’s own Empire is the business of that Emperor. Manipulation by the Hierophant deviant to the success of an Individual Empire, in favor of some Trans-Empire Poisonous Imagination is, again, High Crime in the Hierophantic Art.

All the “Priests of Plan” are Criminals, in the opinion of this ‘humble’ Mad Wizard. To promote the deception of any necessity for some “Grand Designer” to the Young Emperor desperately constructing one’s empire, is a direct violation of the time-honored Hierophantic Art. The tools of some ‘basic coordination’, and some hints at self-acceleration are the principal instruments — and then watchful instructions as the youngling stumbles.
And by the way, I would go so far to say that the Genuine Hierophants might be watchful of the Abberants who would poison the Young Emperors, and maybe take a blade to the necks of those Pretend Hierophants who would so joyously corrupt the Young Emperors into some Blind Allegiance with Their Dæmon. To be very clear — the “false path” is any ‘belief’ in some ‘Controlling Deity’.



Tarot Symbolism: No one is here….


People in the cards of a Tarot deck serve to focus the attention. They may signify the querent, or other people in the querent’s life who have a say in the event which is under consideration. They may signify possibilities for the querent. Always, they help in understanding what is, or what has to be, in a given context.

Thus, it is utterly fascinating for me, when a card has nobody in it…!

In the Rider-Waite deck, there are just two cards with no one… the Three of Swords and the Eight of Wands.

All the Aces have a hand holding the symbol of the suit, signifying a start, a step to begin, a root for manifesting the power of the suit. Each and every one of the Major Arcana are peopled… yes, even The Moon has the unbirthed Man in the Moon! And according to the Tree of Life, what you don’t have is as important in shaping your perspective as what is in your face….

The Three of Swords holds a bleak vision, if we would go by our trained mind. A symbolic heart (and this is what makes it unconnected to any person) is pierced through by three swords of such overwhelming weightage that the mere visual can invoke pity. The background contributes to the bleakness… colourless, cloudy, lashing sleet. And the perfectly symmetrical symbolic heart hangs in the middle of nowhere, stabbed yet not bleeding.

In contrast, the Eight of Wands looks uplifting. Again, though our trained powers of observation, we see a bunch of eight wands up in the air… above our heads, as it would seem from the distant hills. They have apparent direction, but no apparent control exerted by any human. And also the height of their displacement makes the action of the flying wands disconnected from humans. The light in the scene is clear and strong, and the perspective is wide open.

To me, here is the connect….

Lack of people symbolises times when we have no control over the situation. It could be that we have taken some action earlier, and the consequences have been ripped out of our hands. Or it could also be that the basis of our action had been assumptions… which is a case of immaturity, and thus, we feel no connection to what is happening now. Else, and more significantly, it could be the moment when we have the opportunity to realise that we have  far greater creative powers over our lives than we are willing to believe.

Nobody has broken anybody’s heart in the Three of Swords. It is a heart one has imagined…. It is an emotional box that one has defined through preferrences and dislikes. It is what we ‘think’ is our heart, and not what actually is. Thus, what is injured is an idea, a perception…. and not love. When our hearts break…. it is really not our ‘heart’ breaking. Our capacity to love is divine. Nothing destroys the divine. But our assumptions and our desires to be treated in a particular way because we are comfortable with it form an armour of egg-shells… threatened at every turn. And what more exemplary proof of that threat than the sword!!! We are easiest hurt by the words of others, whereas we need to be mature enough to realise that people speak their truth, not ours. We are just as liable to poke at other people’s ideas of self-importance, too! So, with Three of Swords, we meet our emotional immaturity and we have the opportunity to be thankful that those prods could grow us up in a hurry!

The Eight of Wands talks about our desire to control our lives being wrested out of our grip, and we are forced to learn… trust. It is when we are at our most passionate that we have the hardest grips. Nobody knows better than ourselves! And particularly, up until the previous card of Seven of Wands, we were striving, battling, pitting and pitching… and winning. We know what to do, and we are good at how to do it, right? Wrong. No matter how much you know, the divine always knows more. Indeed, in following our passion, we have chosen to be in the flow, and then, there comes a moment when it is only the flow. Trying to regain control would be a mistake… a huge one. It would only speak of fear. Letting be, letting go, letting God… That is the Eight of Wands!

When one or the other of these cards appear in a reading I am participating in, I realise that the querent stands at a threshold of growth… where he is being made to (yes, perhaps even forced to) drop his self-image and let in his divine image of far greater potential than he could imagine.

No one is here. The divine always is!



Tarot Symbolism: The Fool in the Thoth Tarot


There is a lot of symbolism in the Thoth Tarot deck and it starts with The Fool. The Fool is beginning a journey of self-discovery. He is new and yet, he is the old man of the deck as he is finishing the end of the Universe and initiating a new path. He is the ‘missing link’ that completes the cycle and starts it afresh. Let’s look at this card a little more closely.

The Fool is wearing a diamond on top of his head which represents Kether – the Crown of the Tree of Life. Behind this is a rainbow halo which symbolises the enlightenment that Kether provides. He has yellow skin which is the colour of Air, the attribute associated with him. His yellow horns signify creative force and his yellow shoes signify the Sun, the creative light of life. He wears a green tunic and tights. Green is the colour of the fertile Earth. He wears the symbol of the Sun at his root chakra and this not only signifies the creative potential of the genitals, it also represents base human consciousness like a newborn babe. He holds in his left hand what looks to be like a pinecone on fire, a firebrand that travels over his head to meet the cup he holds in his right hand. This cup has a pyramid base and a bowl. He is emptying the contents onto the ground. The firebrand signifies creative fire, the pyramid base is the male phallus and the bowl is the female womb.

Behind the Fool is a background of yellow diamonds. Yellow is the colour of Air and the diamonds tie this to Kether. An arrangement of flowers can be seen between the Fool’s legs. One is a white rose, the other four are lilies. The infants below the flowers represent the ‘solar twins’ found in the Lovers and the Sun. A rainbow-hued spiral circles three times around the fool. This is attached to his heart chakra and is the link between the higher and lower energies of the chakra system.

A dove, vulture and butterfly fly towards the Fool’s heart. The dove,  the female symbol of Venus and the male influence of Yod (20 rays of light), is thus a hermaphrodite, and signifies the descent of spirit to matter. The vulture represents Mut, the Egyptian Mother-goddess, the creator of all things. The butterfly represents the soul and the symbol of Air. This represents the soul entering the unborn babe in the womb. The Fool is, like a newborn babe, trusting and full of potential.

There is a strange image on the spiral over the Fool’s left rib cage. It looks like it has pinecone head and the body of a caduceus supported by the blade of a sword. The caduceus and the sword are symbols of air. The pinecone suggests a Thyrsus, the staff of Dionysus, a symbol of creative energy.

The grapevine that sprouts from the Fool’s heart chakra ties this figure to Bacchus and Dionysus. Suspended from this grapevine is a bag of coins. The symbols on the coins are for the planets and the zodiac and represent the powers potentially available for the Fool to use.

Finally, a tiger and a crocodile are apparent near the base of this image. The tiger represents Leo. The color is reddish-yellow and this represents the world of Assiah (action – one of the four worlds associated with the Tree of Life). The crocodile is the symbol of Saturn, the devourer and a carryover from the Universe, the end of which the Fool takes on as he initiates a new cycle.

I know, there is a lot to this Fool! He is initiating a journey of discovery and growth. He is a newborn, trusting and full of potential.

You can find more from Jean at http://journeythroughtarot.com.

Tarot Symbolism: Ploughed Fields

Ploughed fields are a metaphor for the work that must be done before rewards can be reaped. In the Radiant Rider-Waite Tarot deck I found 5 cards that illustrate ploughed fields. They seemed to speak about the different stages of labour.

The Two of wands speaks to me of the planning that has to go into a project before the actual work begins, not that the planning phase isn’t in itself a labour mind you; it just seems less strenuous than the Ten of Wands who is in the thick of it. “Good planning,” says Two of Wands, “gives us more options later” while he looks over the plouged field from an observer position up high. He is also examining a world-globe in his hand as if trying to decide where to travel to next or what direction to venture into.  He asks: Are we putting enough planning and foresight into our projects or work to ensure that we will have options later on?

The next card, the Ten of Wands, shows an overburdened figure of a man struggling to carry his load. In the background of the card is a building, suggesting a community and a ploughed field suggesting the labour required for provision and self-sufficiency. Working in the community, for the community towards a goal or harvest, but feeling a bit overwhelmed perhaps at the responsibility or enormity of the task. The community of course could be his immediate family or his wider community. He asks: Are we all doing our fair share to contribute towards providing and being as self sufficient as possible, or is there room to delegate and to distribute the workload more evenly?

In the Seven of Pentacles a man is in the field, taking a momentary break while examining the progress of his labours. He looks a bit anxious; perhaps he is concerned that there isn’t enough? In Roxi Sim’s Seven of Pentacles from her Pearls of Wisdom deck we see the characters in more of a celebratory mood.  There is still much work to be done but the rewards of this labour is starting to become obvious and creating reason for optimism and celebration. Seven of Pentacles asks: Are we allowing ourselves to enjoy the early signs of reward for our labour while still diligently working at creating something of significance?

Which brings me to the next card, the Page of Pentacles. Here too we see the ploughed field in the background as the central figure holds the rewards up to examine them. “Should I put a little away for a rainy day” he wonders. “Perhaps I can study to improve my skills.” He seems to be deep in thought about what to do with the reward that he holds in his hands. He asks: Have we made provision for investment in the future by plouging some of our rewards back into our work or project?


This brings me to the last card, the Knight of Pentacles.  This Knight represents responsibility, amongst other. As he sits high upon his horse, carefully holding the reward in his hand, the freshly ploughed fields in the distance are ready to be planted again. He must be responsible in ensuring that seeds have been gathered or saved for the next season. He asks: Are we generous when rewarding others who have laboured alongside us, and are we being responsible with the harvest or rewards to ensure that there is enough to sustain us?


Tarot Symbolism: The Dog – Truly Man’s Best Friend


For personal reasons I wanted to explore the symbolism of the Dog in Tarot for my first Tarot Symbolism post. Having recently lost my own loyal protector it seems apt. Especially as the day before I had to say my goodbyes to my sweetheart the 10 of Pentacles appeared in a reading that I did for myself on the subject and I was immediately drawn to the image of the child reaching out to touch the dog. My youngest child had not had a chance to say her goodbyes to our beloved pet and I knew this would upset her dearly, which it did, yet the alternative of her saying goodbye at the vets the day of the event did not seem like a wise alternative. That little corner of the 10 of Pentacles had tugged at my heart.

So, here I am once again focused on the bottom right corner of the 10 of Pentacles. What can be found here? My first thoughts are of the qualities that both a dog and a young child share… devotion, trust, playfulness, an openness to life and new experiences. As well as that they both have strong instinctual natures. In the 10 of Pentacles two adults are caught up in their own affairs, blind to what is happening around them. The old man in front of the archway with his magical coat may very well be a blessing in disguise, but they do not notice him. The dogs are instinctually drawn to him, and the child to the dog. The dogs and child are open to the magic around them, they are acting instinctively, they are engaged.

Again, in the Fool card I see the dog symbolising our instinctual nature. It is the voice of reason, of those inner gut feelings that can warn of danger. It is our own in-built protection mechanism. Yet although dogs are generally domesticated creatures, they are still beasts within, once running in the wild. They are capable of defending their territory with whatever means is necessary. The Fool is obeying his wild nature, he does not deny his urges. He knows his inner dog is there to protect him, so long as he listens.

In The Moon we see the beast in all its glory. This is the only Major Arcana card where there are no people depicted, the energy is all animal. The dog and the wolf are our id animal natures. They are not afraid to display their lunacy as they are roused to howl at the moon. One full moon some years back I actually found myself literally doing this. I was in such a state of despair. It came from nowhere and felt so good. I allowed it to come up and be released. In The Moon the wild unconscious comes to the surface. Unconscious energy needs to be released. It may take its time but it will come, from a dream, from an inner knowing.

A dog can symbolise many things however looking at these three cards it is the theme of primitive instinctual impulses and desires that emerges strongly for me. The dog is our id, it is our unconscious, our intuition. I know that for me now personally, whenever I view these cards and am drawn to our canine friend, that it will be a prompt for me to dig deep and listen to my gut, to my inner voice. To not ignore raw impulses that well up from within. I may have lost my dearly departed buddy but my inner four-legged friend will always be there. Truly ‘man’s best friend’.

Stella Luna © 2012 The Tarot Reader. All rights reserved.

Tarot Exercise – colour your own!

Once upon a time, somewhere on the www, I found uncoloured line-drawn copies of the RWS cards. I have found it very useful to colour my own as a tarot exercise, and am always pleasantly surprised by what is revealed to me in the process. Perhaps it’s because I look at the cards differently during the process of colouring them, seeing details I had not noticed before.

An example of this is the Three of Swords card. When I spent time colouring this card in I unexpectedly noticed  that the swords were sharp upon entering the heart but blunt upon exiting it! Something changed the blades in the process of piercing the heart! This was something I had really not noticed before colouring in my own Three of Swords card. I also noticed for the first time that it was raining (in the card)! In these unexpected discoveries lie exciting new layers of possible interpretations to further enhance our reading abilities.

I kept the line-drawings and am making them available here for download. Perhaps you’d like to give this exercise a try too? If you do, let me know what new revelations you uncover!

Apologies for the ‘order’ (disorder) that these are in, but it seems all 78 cards are here. I have listed the cards that appear on each page below, with links to download the pdf documents.

Colour-your-own-Page1: The Fool, The High Priestess, The Magician, The Empress

Colour-your-own-Page2: The Emperor, The Hierophant, The Lovers, The Chariot

Colour-your-own-Page3: Strength, The hermit, Wheel of Fortune, Justice

Colour-your-own-Page4: The Hanged Man, Death, Temperance, The Devil

Colour-your-own-Page5: The Tower, The Star, The Moon, The Sun

Colour-your-own-Page6: Judgement, The World

Colour-your-own-Page7: King of Swords, Queen of Swords, Knight of Swords, Page of Swords

Colour-your-own-Page8: Ten of Swords, Nine of Swords, Eight of Swords, Seven of Swords

Colour-your-own-Page9: King of Cups, Queen of Cups, Knight of Cups, Page of Cups

Colour-your-own-Page10: King of Wands, Queen of Wands, Ace of Cups, Two of Cups

Colour-your-own-Page11: Seven of Cups, Eight of Cups, Nine of Cups, Ten of Cups

Colour-your-own-Page12: Knight of Wands, Page of Wands, Ten of Wands, Nine of Wands

Colour-your-own-Page13: Four of Wands, Six of Wands, Seven of Wands, Eight of Wands

Colour-your-own-Page14: Five of Pentacles, Seven of Pentacles, Nine of Pentacles, Ten of Pentacles

Colour-your-own-Page15: King of Pentacles, Queen of Pentacles, Knight of Pentacles, Page of Pentacles

Colour-your-own-Page16: Ace of Pentacles, Four of Pentacles, Three of Swords, Six of Swords

Colour-your-own-Page17: Two of Pentacles, Three of Pentacles, Six of Pentacles, Eight of Pentacles

Colour-your-own-Page18: Ace of Swords, Two of Swords, Four of Swords, Five of Swords

Colour-your-own-Page19: Ace of Wands, Two of Wands, Three of Wands, Five of Wands

Colour-your-own-Page20: Three of Cups, Four of Cups, Five of Cups, Six of Cups

Tarot Symbolism: Knight of Swords – a surprising discovery

I made a revealing discovery on the Knight of Swords card yesterday, using the Universal Waite deck. A card that has ‘disturbed’ me for the longest time because something felt ‘off.’ In contrast to the other 3 knights he has always seemed less controlled somehow, as if he could easily fly off the handle. Thus the feeling that he sometimes rushes in where angels fear to tread.

The Knight of Swords has often come up in my readings when there is a volatile relationship under discussion. He has represented the abusive husband, the hot-tempered young man, and the person who leaps in before he thinks.

The discovery I made opened my eyes to the reason the Knight of Swords is often so angry and out of control of his emotions. On his horse’s bridle is a small, but clear, perfectly shaped red heart! Informing me that this Knight is led by his emotions rather than reason. It explains why he is so quick to anger and seemingly not in control of his reactions. He allows his emotions to lead him, instead of following reason. His emotional immaturity often causes him to overreact which is not really what I would have expected from a Knight in the realm of Reason (Swords.)

I feel that I understand this Knight a little better than I had before, I  feel less judgmental and  more compassionate towards him  since  making this discovery.

Tarotelic series: 6 of Cups

This week I examine the Six of Cups in my current Tarotelic series; focussing on the playful element of the card as well as the slightly more sinister aspect of the card, namely issues from the past.

True to the Tarotelic style of weaving relevant tales from history and myth into the card of the week, today’s offering is no exception. If you’d like to read my approach to the Six of Cups presented in this particular style, I invite you to visit the Tarotelic blog on the following link: Tarotelic with Rootweaver