The Power of Tarot
To honor Mother Earth and the autumn season, we’ll be using “The Wildwood Tarot” designed by Mark Ryan and John Matthews, and illustrated by Will Worthington. Mark grew up playing in Sherwood Forest. He played with bows and arrows around the Magic Oak. He says, “In the olden days, spells were written on arrows, and shot into space to manifest them. Anything is possible if you focus properly. The magic isn’t in the cards, it’s in you.” In addition, Mark discusses climate change, and how humans are not honoring the Earth. He is also very aware of how the Sun, the air, the planet, and humans share a connection. To him, tarot is a natural and accessible map of the human condition. So, with that said, let’s enter the “Wildwood” this week!
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DAY (THE HOODED MAN): This card indicates a need for stillness and contemplation. The Hooded Man, also known as the Hermit or Robin-i-the-Hood, offers you a steadfast light and a steady staff on which to lean and gather your mental resources. He knows that knowledge is light, but it’s sometimes found through sacrifice and stoicism. The Hooded Man may appear in the form of an inner guide or a mentor or simply as a state of mind. You will understand that now is a time to withdraw and rest, so take the path of solitude.
EVENING (TEN OF VESSELS): This card suggests the fulfillment of desires from a source that is pure and cleansing. There is a reward for patience and love given selflessly. It also represents emotional stability and freedom. The deep and profound calm of true and lasting happiness is flowing through life. You feel a sense of homecoming, safety, and beauty. Healing rays of love and warmth certainly radiate from your inner core.
DAY (QUEEN OF VESSELS): Sacred to most shamans, the salmon’s ability to swim upstream to its birthplace and spawn is one of its most remarkable feats. Many die in this process. Thus, salmon represents self-sacrifice. Deeply caring and kind, the Queen’s spirit draws upon the great honesty, generosity, and self-sacrifice she sees in you. She also brings joy to the darkest places. She is someone in your life who is tender-hearted and kind, sensitive, and intuitive, with a romantic streak.
EVENING (EIGHT OF VESSELS): By looking at the past, acknowledging your mistakes, and learning from them, you grow and attain new wisdom. As a result, the future waits for your positive action as you become “The Eighth Vessel” and receive powerful, rejuvenating energies. A time of renewal and potential is here. The cycle of rebirth and healing brings inner peace and confidence. Once you accept that all of the blessings and gifts of life can be yours, the fear of asking is gone. It’s time to shed the skin of the past and accept and use the potential of the present made available to you. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes, and don’t be afraid to ask, “Why not me?”
DAY (ACE OF ARROWS): The breath of life. The Uffington Chalk Hill figure breathes the vitality of life. Also, a renewal of vitality combines with the knowledge of where you wish to be and how to get there. By breathing life into a thought and pursuing it to its material creation in the real world, you engage in an ancient relationship with the universe and the Divine. Therefore, summon and apply the Breath of Life to achieve your conscious desire. Clarity of purpose is the key.
EVENING (KNIGHT OF BOWS): The qualities of cunning and stalking combined with great alertness and curiosity make the Fox a stealthy night hunter. He’s also a mix of wisdom and playfulness. Determination leads you to success but sometimes at personal cost. Your life may change or enter a different path at any moment. Native wit and cleverness guide your steps towards fulfillment, as does your gift of anticipating the future. Leave old ways behind and improvise a way forward. Travel is also possible.
DAY (THE JOURNEY): The Journey is an experience around the wheel. It may mean the death of old ideas or concepts that have outlived their usefulness. It may be that it’s time to strip down to the essential part of your nature so that you can face your fears and neuroses. It’s time to face the inevitable. Don’t fear change. This change may seem extreme and destructive, but old crops must go for new growth to thrive. Therefore, it’s a celebration of the past or an acknowledgment of the passing of one part of life. Let the threads of the old slip from your fingers and enter the time of withdrawal and renewal with patience and calm.
EVENING (THE STAG): Known as Justice in a regular deck, the Stag indicates karmic justice. One reaps what one has sown. Just as right and generous action brings peace, greed and vengeful desire bring loneliness and disillusionment. Human thoughtlessness, greed, and selfishness have certainly disrupted the ecosystem, and the balance has to be reset. On an individual level, there may be feelings of bitterness due to an unfair situation. On a global level, it may also mean that destruction of the rainforests will one day severely impact the weather patterns, and on a personal level, some kind of adjustment or interaction has taken place. The keyword is “responsibility.” You must observe the rules and regulations of society.
DAY (TEN OF STONES): Home. The inner and outer community sustains and supports the individual—not necessarily blood relatives, but trusted friends, comrades, and lovers who offer security and affection. Home, from a traditional view of one’s home to wherever you lay your hat, may be the sanctuary of your own heart in later life. For some, it may be an idea, a hope, or a dream—not merely a shelter. It may also be where love resides, and the final destination after a colorful or arduous life journey.
EVENING (PAGE OF ARROWS): Wren. The colors of the goldcrest—red, white, green and black—were sacred and the common wren was also considered a guardian of the winter mysteries. Druids considered the wren to be an animal of augury and prophecy. Your youth and determination will carry you forward and your new skills bring you to a dynamic realization. This Page is a good companion to see you through trials and challenges because he/she doesn’t give up. He’s observant, but he can also be a spy or a snoop.
DAY (#11, THE WOODWARD): Usually, in classical tarot this card is Strength. Here, as The Woodward, an ancient guardian of the Wildwood, it symbolizes the inner power that comes from facing fear and understanding darkness. The inner strength that comes from this awareness gives the person the emotional body language and the humility that says, “I am not a victim. Treat me with respect. Do not mistake my passivity with weakness.” The Woodward is a hunter. When a person is removed from a place of seeming security, they are stripped of the emotional baggage that holds them in a state of limbo. During this stripping away of illusory power, individuals find within themselves their true inner strength. Then they gain vital wisdom about the nature of patience and resolution. The Woodward’s strength is needed if you are to see what ‘s to come.
EVENING (KING OF VESSELS: HERON): The Heron is said to be gifted with psychic perception and reflection. It’s the guardian of many esoteric secrets and a mediator on the soul’s journey. A deep belief in fairness, honesty, and honor colors everything you do. However, your high degree of self-control can sometimes make you appear too rigid.
DAY (THREE OF ARROWS): Jealousy. A tension of emotions creating fear, jealousy or envy between people. Competing passions or feelings of resentment that are ultimately destructive. Resentment or negative attitudes towards family, friends or coworkers, born of emotional insecurity or social prejudice.The origins of jealousy can be varied, but whether born of a broken heart, a broken dream or a broken economic system, beware of surrendering humility and forgiveness to feelings of envy or jealousy. Beware of feelings of entitlement attached to the issue. The healing balm for envy is humility, acceptance, and forgiveness, even in the face of bitter rivalry and anger. Refocus your energy into positive and creative pursuits.
EVENING (EIGHT OF STONES): Here is a night to use your abilities to complete a project, a job, household duties or a labor of love. Sometimes intense focus, concentration, and dedication are required. This is a good night to focus on learning new skills for the betterment of the tribe or society. However, this unique human ability requires patience, perseverance, and most of all, self-discipline. Acquiring a skill that involves imagination and artistic flair requires time spent learning and defining the nature of self-expression. Remember, the mastery of any skill requires you to call on the Divine to bless the effort and energy expended in the process.
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