Friday, March 8, 2013

3/9/13-3/11/13—Looking Inside the House of Lies

Weekend Reading SPECIAL EDITION*: Clover in the House of Fox from the Minute Lenormand and the Deck of Lenormand Houses. This is an interesting combination. Literally, you could translate it to be "luck in the house of lies". So either you'll get away with a lie this weekend or you'll be on the lucky end of a lie...maybe someone lying to save your arse! But Fox can also speak to employment matters, so if you're looking for a job right now or awaiting news about your job, things could turn out quite well for you. A third option is that you'll get lucky in the den (house of fox...haha). No matter how you look at this combo, it's going to work out in your favor. But in the case of the most literal sense of the twosome—luck in house of deception or lies—be sure to factor in the cost. You may get away with your deception or manipulation, but at what cost to your integrity? And what karma will you create? Sometimes it's better to just take the hit and deal with it now, rather than get away with deception and carry the burden around for a while. 

*This weekend reading will have to last you an extra day, because The Daily Draw will be closed on 3/11/13. For those who MUST have their fix, read this, this or this

Thursday, March 7, 2013

3/8/13—Aging Gracefully

Today's Draw: Lilies in the House of Garden in the position of Goal from Chronata's Minute Lenormand, the Deck of Lenormand Houses and the Deck of 1000 Spreads. How do you feel about becoming—and looking—older? Would you ever get a face lift? As you age is your goal to squeeze out every last drop of youth...or to reach out and embrace your elder status?

Today is the last day I'll be posting one of my long blog posts as a woman in her 40s. I turn 50 this weekend. And I'm still not sure how to feel about that. I know that, among my options are a) cry because my life is over and b) just treat it like another day. Aside from the rather full day I have planned, I was leaning toward option b. 

But then came Lilies (Wisdom, Maturity and "Older Woman") in the House of Garden (Community, Party, Event) in the position of Goal (Goal...haha). So it's saying my goal should be to celebrate my elder status with others. Well, my actual plans are pretty low key, but there's a piece to this that's saying a) I've reached elder status and b) that means I'm now part of the community of my elder friends. And my plans do include a certain elder friend....

There's this whole Maiden/Mother/Crone thing that signifies the life stages of a woman. And, with menopause and 50 and all of that, you become a crone, an elder. Most of my friends are already there, hovering in their mid-50s to early 60s. One is in her early 70s. And while I'll still be the young whippersnapper with much to learn...haha. I'm kind of officially one of them now. These are the wisest, kindest, most supportive and reasonable people I know, so it's good company. 

And bringing that back around to the cards, our society puts forth so much effort to make youth our goal. We slather ourselves in creams, get surgery, inject botchalism in our faces, pop vitamins, wear hip clothes, clomp around in ridiculous shoe trends...we feel compelled to chase this specter that's gets farther and farther away from us each passing day.  

Sometimes I'll see an actress on TV that I know has many years on me and, even if she looks good, I think, "what are you running from? Who do you think you're fooling?" Some of these women don't even look like the woman they were before. While I'm sure they have a lot of pressure on them to look a certain way for their career, it certainly hasn't hurt Sally Field's career that she remains fairly natural. 

I guess what I'm trying to say is that I get wanting to feel good about yourself. But how good can you feel when your intention is to chase your youth and any hint of age is met with a call to the plastic surgeon? Is that really feeling good about yourself? Or does feeling good about yourself have more to do with embracing yourself as you are? How do you ever come to peace with yourself when you keep finding things to fix?

And I don't want this to be about surgery. Someone close to me had a face lift and it made them feel better when they looked in the mirror. I really didn't notice much of a difference, quite frankly, because I will probably always see her through certain eyes. What this is about is the push in our society to chase youth. That looking young, feeling young and being young is the goal. 

But I look at friends of mine who are aging naturally...D with her long gray hair, V with the sassy cuts and scarves and R with her glowing skin, short cropped gray curls and youthful energy....and I see beauty and wisdom on their faces and in their eyes. How can that NOT be our goal? To traverse our 50s, 60s and 70s with a light heart and our earned wisdom? 

Listen, my friend R is in her 70s and can run rings around all of us. If she has wrinkles, I haven't noticed them. I haven't noticed them on V or D, either. Eyes and hearts and spirits never wrinkle. When I talk to these women, they glow from something genuine within. That earned confidence and wisdom supercedes anything on their face. And because it's natural, you're not looking a them wondering what work they've had can see through to their soul. How can that not be our goal?

So as I approach this turn of the calendar in my life, I know what I want to be when I grow up. I want to wear my wrinkles and age spots as a show of wisdom. I want to remind myself that when I look in a mirror, I see Tierney's wrinkles and when everyone else looks at me they just see Tierney. And I want gray hair like D's, but my follicles aren't cooperating quite yet. The goal is to celebrate my cronedom and know that once I'm there, I'm in very good company. 

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

3/7/13—Finding Your Way Within

Today's Draw: Hermit in the You position from the Wild Unknown and the Deck of 1000 Spreads. Do you believe that, no matter how many others may be in our lives, we're all ultimately alone? What does the thought of "being alone" make you feel? How much do you trust your inner understanding of truth over that of society's understanding of truth?

Wow. Way to be subtle tarot! Even the most novice of novices can read THIS message loud and clear...haha.

There's more to The Hermit than just being a recluse, though. The Hermit is a recluse for a reason. He withdraws from society to seek inner wisdom and spiritual truth. The fewer stimuli and interruptions, the more he's able to see. And while he pokes around with his lamp in the dark corners of life, he's able to see things he might otherwise see.

The Hermit is usually on the move when we see him in other tarot cards, but this guy is in total stealth mode. He's ready to see the things only owls and trees see as they silently observe the world below. And this guy has a ground level view.

In a way, the Hermit card speaks of many things required on our spiritual journeys. For example, he shines his light on the wisdom within. This is synchronistically illustrated by the way the lamp is pointing right at the word "you" in the picture. But it's also illustrated by how the turtle is pulled inside with eyes wide open.

Going within to seek knowledge and the truth of ourselves is a very scary thing. But it's also powerful to recognize that each of us holds divine wisdom and knowledge. We don't need the affirmation of those outside of us. Being comfortable and confident enough within our own shell to know and see the truth of ourselves and others rewards us with the ability to trust our own instincts, abilities, intuition, knowledge and strength. Once we become firmly footed in those things, nobody can take them away from us. This is key, because think of how many times you've deferred to others on those grounds, only to have your own instincts proven right.

Another thing the Hermit speaks of detachment. This is not only in the way he detaches from the cacophony of the world to hear the silence within, but it's also in the way he detaches from what he's been told in order to reference his own wisdom. This is what the whole spiritual journey is about, imo. Religion is what you're taught about God and spirituality is what you learn about God through your own inner seeking. While others can offer techniques and support along your spiritual journey, it simply must be traveled alone.

Again, this takes courage and trust in your own inner knowing. But it's a personal relationship that, even though you may be able share the fruits of with like minds, you nonetheless have to detach from outside influences in order to find authentically.

A third thing the Hermit speaks of is intertwined with the detachment thing. It's the idea of seeing things with new eyes and a new mind. We have to detach from what we've been told and what everyone else sees as being real in order to have our eyes open enough to see what is truly real. Every experience and interaction in our lives colors the "truth" or "what is". And while the pursuit of truth is a lifelong and ever-shifting journey, if we stand any chance of seeing it, it's has to be through virgin eyes that have detached from all preconception.

This is why the Hermit searches in the night and why this particular one sits silently within his shell appearing as a rock or stone to all stimulus around him. He needs the silence and stillness, as well as the ability to shine a light on things normally unseen, to find the truth of his world.

If there were one message to walk away from all of this with, it's the simplest and most basic one of spiritual pursuit—you are the light, the seer and the knower. There is no mystery or question that can't be resolved from within. You don't need to become illuminated or enlightened. You've got that already. You just need to raise your lamp and steer your way there.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

3/6/13—Transcending Through a Hobby

Today's Draw: The Star in the Hobbies and Talents position from The Wild Unknown and the Deck of 1000 Spreads. What are your hobbies? How often do you partake in them? And how do they make you feel?

Tarot and this blog are hobbies of mine. 
We are all polyhedrons. Which is to say we are three-dimensional objects with many sides. There's the side of us that identifies with gender. The side that identifies with familial role. The side that identifies with our profession. Etc. And one of those sides is dedicated to hobbies and talents. 

Most people, I think, have hobbies. They may not always do them, but they have them. Maybe they like to do genealogy. Read history books. Collect tea cups. Quilt. Or, like me, maybe they're hobby fanatics, putting their grubby little paws in all sorts of things. 

The cool thing about hobbies is that there is literally something for everyone. And whatever it is you like to do, there's really no way to fail. Right? I can't think of a way. Because it's something you do for enjoyment. It's how you express your passions. 

What else in our lives do we have that we'll never really be judged at (unless we want to be); that holds no consequences if we do it poorly; that is entirely based upon our whims and timing; and that nobody else has input into? Hobbies and talents are purely our own. And they're so many and varied that you don't have to be "creative" or "smart" or anything else to have one. You can just be you. 

Cooking is one of my hobbies. 
The Star is shining its light upon hobbies today because they are also our own little fortresses of happiness and hope. They are the place we can turn to go inward, shut the rest of the world out and channel "the force". How many times have you been engrossed in a hobby and lost all sense of time and place? Pretty much every time, I'll bet. Well those moments of transcendence are mystical experiences. 

When people talk about meditation, out of body experiences, transcendence and channeling spirit, it's the same feeling as when you're engrossed in a hobby...that feeling where you lose all sense of time, space and form and you're in the zone. Stress melts away, you even out, and you emerge happier than when you went in. 

Stained glass is another hobby. 
When I talked about all the different facets of you up above, I think hobby time is that facet of you that is most your essential and divine self—even more so than, say, your spiritual side. Because your spiritual side is making an effort and your hobby side puts you there without effort. 

What this all comes down to is that today's reading is acknowledging that connection to the divine through the total focus of a hobby. It's telling us that, despite all the other facets you sometimes HAVE to be, the one that you WANT to be is the path to bliss. 

Monday, March 4, 2013

3/5/13—Digging Into Past Lives

Today's Draw: Six of Pentacles in a Past Life from The Wild Unknown and the Deck of 1000 Spreads. Do you believe that children are more psychically inclined than older children and adults? Do you believe in past lives? And if you do, what do you suppose you learned in past lives that you won't have to deal with in this one?

Back when I was three or four years old I had a number of premonitions or mystical experiences that I've carried with me all my life. I've told this story before, but this fertile period of "awareness" all happened while I was living in the "creepy room"—a tiny room that was intended to be a closet, but we turned into a bedroom. 

Anyway, during that time I felt like I "downloaded" a lot of information from...somewhere. Or something. Some of it, I'm pretty sure, was about a past life. Some of it was stuff that I remembered, but didn't understand the significance of until much later in life. And some of it came in the form of just "knowing" what some of my struggles would—and wouldn't—be in this lifetime. Today's card reminds me of one of those things because I've just always believed that any lesson of poverty or gross mismanagement of money happened in a previous life. So far it also seems like any lesson involving having way more than I need was saved for another life, too...haha. But I've always had enough to keep me from struggling and that was the premonition—that I wouldn't struggle. 

While the Six of Pentacles is usually about giving or receiving money, in this deck it's about prosperity and growth. So this pair is talking about a lesson of prosperity and growth that came from a past life. That can mean you're not going to struggle in this life. Or it can mean a resentment, fear, false belief or impediment of some sort that came from a prosperous past life. 

Thinking about all of this and what it means to me brings up a whole sack of warring philosophical thoughts. So I had this notion as a small child. Is is possible that it came from my imagination and, having that belief from a young age, drove the eventual reality in my life? I very much ascribe to this method of creating things in our lives, so it's possible. 

Could it be that I was getting input from spirits their messages had nothing to do with me? Part of the creepiness of that room was that I heard Native American-type drumming every night that terrified me because, even then, it felt otherworldly. 

Or could it really be a past-life lesson and one I didn't need to learn in this lifetime? Any one of my brothers and sisters will tell you about the lucrative industry I created in my pre-school years centered around selling dirt-clad rocks, pebbles and gravel to my parents for precious pennies and nickels that could be spent on candy at Pat's Market.  

Or could it have nothing to do with mystical matters at all and, instead, be because I work hard and have my hand in so many pots that I have good "insurance", financially speaking? When you look at the picture, it could suggest this. Each clump of leaves collects the water and sun needed to produce the fruit. And there are many clumps collecting the energy needed to bear fruit. 

Of course, these are all questions we'll never know the answers least not in this incarnation. Some of the information I got at that time has come to pass in one way or another. Not small things, either. My career in advertising, my struggle with weight and the money thing among them. But, of course, some of it has also not yet come to pass. 

But this prompts us all to ask ourselves some of the big questions. How much of our live is pre-determined and how much is not? How much do we create through our thoughts and how much by our will? And what tough past-life lessons are you gratefully free of having to deal with this time around?

Sunday, March 3, 2013

3/4/13—Observing Life's Magic

Venus, Jupiter and the Moon prepare to align 
with my neighbor's house on 2/26/12

Today's Draw Classic*: This is a post from a year ago that was part of a special series I did using nature as my muse. And because this was last year, Mars isn't in the sky right now. And I've edited some of it, so some of it is new. OK. Here goes...

Most nights, in the wee hours, you can find me out back on my deck, gazing up at the sky. But it's not the genius of the universe that keeps me coming back night after night. It's something much closer to home....

I'm like the US Postal Service in that weather doesn't stop me from my nightly watch. There doesn't even have to be stars. In fact, I've been known to accumulate an inch of snow on my blankets, at times. Only a hard rain can keep me away, because at that point, sitting under my soffit will no longer keep me dry.

When I'm out there looking up at the stars, you'd think I'd be contemplating the enormity and wonder of the universe. And sometimes I do. I wonder how far away a particular star is or think about how it could have died a thousand years ago, but I can still see it because it's more than a thousand light years away. It's like peering into history.

Over time, I've become marginally capable of spotting constellations and such. I can always spot Mars, because it really does have a redder cast than other "stars" (yes, I know Mars is a planet). And I like to look for Orion, not only because I can spot it easily, but also because its belt is made up of three stars called the Three Sisters. And I'm one of three sisters. Then, of course, there's the Big Dipper or Ursa Major. And I check for Polaris most nights, just to make sure it's still there. If it should happen to disappear suddenly, I want to know first hand.

But here's the thing...I wouldn't know any of that if it weren't for the help of a kick-ass app called Star Walk. So what truly amazes me as I gaze up at the sky each night is how ancient man knew all of this stuff without consulting their iPhones. Here are just a few of the mindblowing things ancient man did with his skills of observation of the night sky:
  • The Mayan Calendar. The long count Mayan calendar dates back to the 5th century BC. It is more accurate than our Gregorian calendar because it measures the length of a year essentially down to the second. We add a leap day every 4 years to account for this difference, measuring a year as 365.25 days. In fact, a year is 11 minutes shorter than that which, over decades and scores and centuries, adds up. The Mayans, in 500BC knew about those 11 minutes based on precise calculations made on data observed over hundreds of years. They devoted generations of observation to the sun and night sky to create the most accurate calendar known to man—over 2500 years ago!
  • The Antikytheria Mechanism. Recovered from a shipwreck in 1900 and dated back to the 1st century BC, this mechanism is known as the world's first computer. Among other things, it precisely measures the location of celestial bodies and also accounts for that extra quarter day each year—150 years before any official calendar ever did. With all our modern instruments, we still don't know how they made it or why.
  • The Pyramids, Stonehenge, etc. Whether Mayan or Egyptian, the pyramids display multiple alignments that correspond to the night sky—not just within the individual pyramids themselves, but between multiple pyramids miles apart. Stonehenge was built in 3000-2000 BC and contains astrological elements, including stones that mark solstices and equinoxes. Around the world there are lesser structures that shadow light in a certain way, depending upon where the sun is, also pointing out solstices and other celestial events. It's not just the years of observation that went into the certainty behind creating these structures, but the import placed on the sun, moon and stars that drove ancient man to find ways to create megolithic structures. We still don't know how they created those structures without modern machinery. But they found a way. It was that important to them.
In addition to all that, some believe that many prehistoric cave paintings were actually drawings of constellations, rather than animals...they were using animals to represent what they saw in the night sky. We're talking 15,000 or more years ago...before farming and "civilization" itself. Certainly those who were so attuned to their environment couldn't miss certain patterns in the night sky. But if they were actually recording them? It boggles the mind! This is stuff that we're still figuring out today and ancient man, if not prehistoric man, had a bead on it way before they had instruments to measure and observe it.

We walk through our days, focused on getting to a destination or completing an errand and we never stop to just take in our environment. As a result, our pets and children (and ourselves) seem to age all of a sudden. We mean to get around to something and years later it's still left untouched. We fail to see relationships slipping away.

Let's face it, our focus on intentional observation has diminished considerably over time, unless you're a scientist or something. And with it, we've lost that sense of mystery and awe that kept ancient man on the edge of his seat when it came to things like the night sky. Now it's just something many of us take for granted. Which begs the question...what else might be going on right under your nose that you might not be noticing?

Over the next week or so, try one of the following and see what it yields:
  • Watch grass grow. With spring upon us, now would be a great time to observe what's popping out of the ground and how fast it grows. Check one or two times a day and compare to surrounding plants. Who grows faster? Who dies faster? What can you learn from that?
  • See the world from your front stoop. I've lived in my home for 13 years and only sat on the front stoop for the first time recently. Things look different from the front stoop. Someone in a house in my eyesight opened an upstairs window and dropped a sack of trash out of it right into a bin sitting 15 feet below. This was apparently a regular thing they did. And I never knew. I never saw certain neighbors come home from work or who jogs down the street. Never knew what the squirrels out front did at dusk or what it smelled like when neighbors cooked dinner. It's a whole different world I had never appreciated before. 
  • Go sky watching. Jupiter and Saturn will be big and bright in the sky throughout March 2013. And March 12th seems to be the best time to spot the comet PANSTARRS in the western sky within an hour after sunset. 
This isn't about intuition or psychic power. It's not about hugging trees or talking to squirrels. This is about using our good, old powers of observation to see something that's been happening right in front of us all our lives, only we've just never taken the time to notice. Prehistoric man's life depended upon it. And you'd be surprised at just how important an oversight it may be in your life once you start looking.

Our ability to observe and be conscious of our surroundings is directly proportional to the amount of control we claim over our existence. You can go through life with blinders on, living in a world of chaos where things just happen to you. Or you can bring order and personal responsibility into your world by paying attention to the bits and bytes of information streaming toward you at any given time. In short, you can see stuff coming long before it smacks you in the head.

The more conscious we become of our environment, the more informed we are. It's that simple. Whether you believe in God, angels, fate, science, the Universe or nothing at all, messages and clues are streaming in toward you all the time. Some of them are wrapped in beauty and wonder, while others are wrapped in red flags. But if you have your head down plowing through your day, you're going to miss them. And you'll have nobody to blame but yourself. 

*Adapted from 3/4/12