Sunday, 29 September 2013

Choices Reading

Over the last week, I have met with two obstetricians who were recommended to me by my gynaecologist.  After meeting the first lady, I thought I'd definitely choose her, but after meeting the second guy, I thought I'd choose him.  So, I slept on the decision, and woke feeling fairly certain.  Still, I wanted to see what the cards had to say.

As this is about giving birth, a very female-centric activity, I decided to use my Mythical Goddess Tarot, which I was reminded of when I posted earlier this week about Brigid.  I drew three cards for each consultant, to represent pros, cons and a summary.  My readings are more intuitive than traditional, and admittedly show the choice I felt I'd already come to.  Still, they brought up some interesting points and thoughts, so I'll share them.

For the first obstetrician, I drew the Crone of the Seas (Resurrection) as the pros card.  In this, I see that she is very experienced, and understands the flow of this process.  However, the card gave me a bad feeling.  Firstly, because I worry about being too old to be a mother, and a Crone card is a reminder of that, as I think that this consultant is younger than me.  Secondly, because it feels like she is perhaps very clear about her own strengths, and may overwhelm me.

For her cons card, I drew the Mother of Earth, and this spoke to me straight away.  She said a couple of things in our meeting which I didn't like, basically being negative towards independent midwives, and mocking 'tree huggers who hum'.  Well, I'm a humming tree-hugger!  I know I'll have to have quite a medical birth, given my age and the problems when my son was born.  Still, I haven't given up on it being as natural as possible, active and honouring of my body.

In summary, the Three of Seas seems very positive, subtitled Compassion.  Yet, it makes me wonder about her compassion, and also about her dedication.  She seemed a bit bellicose, talking about arguing against certain midwife practices and against the NICE guidelines (standardised hospital practice).  She may be more into her ideas than into being compassionate towards me as an older mother with a lot of fear.  Looking at the image itself, it shows three dragons swirling about, and I have a sense of her focus being divided.  Her secretary had already told me she might not be able to be there for my actual birth, as she is scheduled to speak as an expert witness at a trial around that time.  And the way she talked likewise makes me think she's focused on proving something generally, rather than being focused on me, my baby, and my birth.

For the second obstetrician, I drew the Ten of Seas as the pros card.  It is subtitled Purity, and I love the image of a memaid, surrounded by water and stars.  There is a feeling of going with the flow, of a beautiful, emotional focus, and a purity of intent.  This represents to me that he is truly focused on me and on the baby.  Though he is a man, he is deeply connected to the feminine, and understands the flow of pregnancy and birth.  Already, at our first meeting, I liked that he wanted to do a scan.  Not to charge me for it (which he didn't), but just to take a look for himself, and "meet" the little one already :)

In the cons position, I drew the Maiden of Earth, subtitled Beauty.  I was talking just yesterday with a friend who'd been to a women's only spa with her sister at the weekend.  I mentioned how I also loved women only gyms, as it's just such a different vibe.  This card reminds me that I may not feel 100% comfortable having a man seeing me in labour.  However, I remember being concerned about that last time round with my DH.  When it came to it, I was just glad to have him there, supporting me, and it certainly hasn't put him off sex (which a couple of our male friends had suggested).

The summary card rounds this up for me: the Ten of Wind.  If there is an issue, it will be in my own worries and concerns, not in the actual situation nor in this man.  So, if I want to go with this consultant (which I do), then I simply have to be aware that my own thoughts could get in my way, and remember that he is pure of intent, focused on the process.  Based on my experience with my DH, I think that when push comes to shove, none of that mental chatter will matter!

Saturday, 28 September 2013

Altar-ation Too!

Today, Eowyn posted about a global ritual for the planet against fracking.  As she'd mentioned it last week, I had also decided to take part, and adjusted my altar with that focus in mind.  I chose three cards from the Goddess Oracle (Marashinsky and Janto), to emphasise that: Sedna, who sacrificed herself to create the creatures of the seas; Gyhldeptis, who protected the forest and the wider world from the forces of chaos; and Pachamama, a mother Goddess associated with harvest and healing and the high mountains (though in this image she looks more like a crone).  

I lit some incense and a candle, and filled my water bowl (I'll admit, I don't do these things on a daily basis).  I said a few words as I did each, and then held the stone at the front of the altar for a few moments, focusing on the earth as a whole.  I chanted two malas of Om Shanti Om, praying for peace for Mother Earth, peace and freedom from destruction.  I thought about the Goddess as a nurturing force in the seas, on the earth, and in the air and high places, and prayed for an end to the wanton destruction and pollution of her beauty.  


I left the candle alight, to burn out by itself, sending up my prayers with its light.  May we honour the Earth, our Mother.

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Brigid

Brigid is probably my favourite Goddess.  I used to like her mainly because of her association with inspiration and art.  Over time, though, I've come to appreciate her other qualities, too.

It was because of the spark of inspiration, the flame of passion, that I assigned her to the South when I call the quarters.  Yet, these days, I pay more attention to the fact that she is associated with healing, poetry and smithing.  Connecting that with the wonderful, vibrant image from the Goddess Oracle (Marashinsky and Janto), I sometimes think about how she could be associated with past, present and future.  Not with Maiden, Mother and Crone (though I do have cards and texts that link her at least with the first two), but with a perspective on life that looks to the past, lives in the present, and manifests in the future.

In that sense, the healing could be associated with the past, which is what most often needs to be healed.  Be they physical or emotional hurts, we have to deal with what is troubling us, as it is often only once it starts to be a problem that we know there is something going on.  It is important to start here, though, as the next two parts are made much harder if we don't take the time to make sure we are well enough to enjoy the present and plan for the future.

In the present, we find inspiration every day to live and act and enjoy the world, to find the poetry in our everyday lives.  From the song we sing to welcome the morning to the lullaby at night, from the idea to make something to feed our family to the desire to write, inspiration touches us in subtle ways every moment of every day.

And looking to the future, we can take that inspiration and plan how to make the idea into a reality.  Like smithing, this is about turning ideas into something more tangible than poetry, more lasting than a lunchtime snack.  We need to gather up the resources required, put in place the processes and the equipment, perhaps even the people - a handy smith's assistant :D  This is when all that inspiration is made real, rather than staying in the realm of ideas and fantasies.

I love that Brigid is so multi-faceted.  That she encourages us to honour our past, present and future, to heal our ills and create something worthwhile.  All this while keeping us in the moment, aflame with enthusiasm - that's quite a balancing act to achieve!

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Oya

Having mentioned before the four aspects of Goddess that I call for the quarters, I wanted to write a little about each.  Most times when I meditate, I do a quick circle calling first, it helps me get into the right frame of mind.  And so, most days, I think about these aspects of deity and what they mean to me.

The depictions I visualise are those from my favourite Goddess Oracle by Marashinksy and Janto.  I love how Oya is shown as a very strong, determined figure, sending out anything from breezes to tornados from her outstretched fingers.  I call her in the East, associating her with Air: the winds of change.

For me, she can sweep away the cobwebs and bring clarity with her wind that blows clouds and confusion before it.  The Air can be subtle, a breeze that sneaks into any little gap.  Or it can be a fierce storm, knocking down trees and edifices that stand in its path. 

Oya is not intentionally cruel, however she knows where she wants to get to and lets nothing stand in her way.  And sometimes she is carried along by the joy of moving and doing, not paying attention to the effect she is having.  She is a force to be reckoned with, and a good ally to have on-side.

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Early Hours Meditation

This morning, once again I was awake in the early hours.  After an hour of lying in bed not sleeping and trying to push thoughts from my mind, I decided I should get up and do something.  However, having hurt my wrist a couple of days ago doing yoga at night, that was out.  So, instead, I sat in meditation.

First, I grounded, visualising connecting with the molten core of the earth.  Then, I cast a circle, calling the corners and my four favourite Goddesses: Oya, Brigid, Cerridwen and Hekate.  I pictured drawing a pentacle in blue light before me, and it floating up above me, with lines of white energy expanding out from the points to create a bubble of light around me. The energy I drew up from the core of the earth filled that bubble with light.

Given it was 3.30am and everyone else in the house was sleeping, I decided to chant silently to the Goddess.  In the first round of nine Goddesses called twelve times each, I chanted and also visualised writing their names as I called them.  In the second round, I added a prayer to each Goddess.  For example, I asked Kali for the ability to face my fears with courage.

At the end, I opened the circle in reverse of how I cast it, and visualised the pentacle's energy retracting back into itself, then floating down in front of me, so that I could de-voke it.  I pictured the pentacle and all its gathered energy floating down to rest against my heart, acting as a shield for the rest of the day.

All this was done at my new, miniaturised altar (pictured above).  As we are trying to sell our house, I need my altar to be easily moveable and hideable.  So, I've gone back to just one altar, and put it on the smaller of the two trays I normally use.  This way, I can fold in the legs and tuck it into a cupboard when people come around ;D  And, as you can perhaps see from the picture, my Herne and Pan figurines have also gone into the cupboard...  My DH said that some people might think the house was cursed.  It was bad enough the estate agents spotting a bookcase full of tarot books and boxes :/  I may have to box those up before we start showing the place *doh*

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

The Unseen

This morning, before meditating, I thought I'd try again with the Oracle of the Mermaids (Blue Angel, 2013) for something uplifting.  Turns out, this deck isn't just all happiness and light like a Doreen Virtue deck.  Nor does it seem to want to give me any straight answers.  Not just that, but my card for the day rather gave me the creeps!  Titled 'The Unseen', this mermaid looks as though she has evil intent, peering out of her cave, hiding something golden under her tail, and crawling across a skull and other bones.  Scary!

Anyhow, I decided I couldn't just stay with that image.  So, I pulled out my favourite Lenormand and asked: "What am I not seeing?"  My answer, shown here from the Mystical Lenormand (Königsfurt-Urania, 2004) was Tower, Man, Dog (actually Cat in the deck I used, but that's okay).



What this says to me is that corporate logic is loyal only to itself.  This is a good reminder for me today. I had to deal with about 8 different people from various big institutions (all of them male, coincidentally).  I kept in mind that, no matter how friendly they may seem, they are all working to their own (or their company's) agenda.  So, time to read the fine print, and listen to my gut.

Afterwards, I meditated, chanting the Goddess chant.  I also started off my sitting practice with a visualisation of calling the corners, and then creating a safe space for myself within a ball of light.  This is something I often do, but which I haven't done for the last couple of weeks.  However, Magic Mentha was kind enough to do a reading for me yesterday, and one of the cards came up mentioned this kind of visualisation, so I decided now was a good time to bring it back into my spiritual practice :)

Saturday, 7 September 2013

Divination

Oracle of the Mermaids
This morning, I decided to finally draw a card from the Oracle of the Mermaids (Blue Angel, 2013), as there was something bothering me to the point of insomnia.  I guess I was hoping for some kind of simple, uplifting message.  However, what I got made me laugh - Divination.  Okay, point taken, this is a complicated issue and needs a bit more thought than "Speak your truth" ;D

So, I did a Horseshoe Reading with my Gaian Tarot (Joanna Powell-Colbert, 2010) to look at the problem that was bothering me.  The issue is around approaching an authority figure to pitch an idea which will be quite expensive, but which I think will be a really positive investment.
Gaian Tarot Horseshoe Reading

Past: Four of Air

This card reminds me that I have been very passive, very inactive, in this area for quite some time.  The downside of that is that I haven't had to make this kind of pitch for a while.  The upside, I guess, is that this person can see I don't just go into these things on a whim.


Present: Bindweed - The Devil

Ha, yes, here's the nub of the problem, and my insomnia.  I feel all tangled up in my thoughts, and in the little voices of those birds on the wire above this figure.  Voices telling me my ideas are no good, that I'm silly or childish, that I'm not deserving of other people's time, that I should be quiet and let the adults/professionals get on with things.  There's no particular reason for me to hear these messages, but I think it's partly an issue about how I relate to authority figures.  Much of my work is fairly independent.  It's not often that I depend on others, or have to get their approval.

Future:  Ten of Fire

I need to burn through the ties that are binding me, in order to free up space and energy to work on this new project.  Like a forest fire that leaves room for new growth, I need to clear out the negativity so I can focus on doing the necessary work.

Action to Take:  The Lovers

As I'm going into my inner child (and not in a good way), I need to focus on the fact that I can make adult choices.  I'm reminded of something Rachel Pollack said about the Lovers (paraphrasing here).  She says that this is like the first time we leave home, which back in the day was when we got married. It's about making independent choices and living with their consequences.  I need to show that I've thought this through, that it's not just an infatuation.  Instead, I need to line up my arguments in a logical, rational way, but still with passion.

External Influences:  Nine of Water

I think this may be saying that the people I have to approach are also emotional beings.  They don't particularly hate me nor want to make me unhappy.  However, I also need to pitch things to where their emotions lie, to the things that will move them, not just wow them with statistics and numbers and legal arguments.

Hopes and Fears:  Justice

I hope that my motives will be shown to be good, and that my past behaviour and successes will be taken into account.  I fear that there is bias in my choice here, but hope that it isn't enough in itself to bring my arguments down.

Potential Outcome:  Strength

What a lovely way to end this reading.  I love this card, so warm and uplifting :)  The card suggests that, at the very least, I will be able to tame my fears and my authority issues to create a good, logical, passionate pitch.  I can't ask for more than that :)

Friday, 6 September 2013

Letting Go

This morning, I was planning to pull an oracle card, but then I ended up pulling out and shuffling my favourite Lenormand deck.  A card fell out, and without looking at it I took it as a theme.  Then, five more fell out all together, and I chose to take them as the main reading.  Finally, I looked to the base card, and took that as the guidance/lesson card.  I laid them out as a cross for myself, but when I scanned these cards from the Mystical Lenormand (Königsfurt-Urania, 2004) they wouldn't fit on my scanner that way, so we get the pattern you see here.  The Coffin is the theme card, and the Cross is the guidance card.

Coffin & Cross; Birds, Child, Tree, Ship, Clouds.
This fits very well with yesterday's New Moon reading, and a comment Ellen left.  It's been such a bumpy journey getting to this point, with a baby hopefully on the way, but a lot of fear in my heart.  I definitely feel like I need some kind of closure on the emotions from the past.

The line talks of nervousness around the health of a child, and feelings of confusion and nostalgia.  Taking the more empowering reading of these, I see the recommendation to talk about these issues, to seek wisdom on them, and so move through the confusion to a place of greater calm.  The Cross as guidance suggests that a spiritual approach - prayer and meditation - will help.

Based on this reading, I decided to do a different chant during today's meditation, and stuck to a simple Om Shanti Om, praying for inner peace.  I felt so connected to it that I ended up doing two malas of the chant, and then took some time in silence.

I have to say, it's a relief to finally be journalling about this here.  One of the reasons I've posted a lot less the last few weeks is because most of my readings spoke to me on this subject, and as I wasn't writing about it...

It weird, I flip-flop between excitement and nerves - perfect Birds behaviour.  My DH and I have started talking about it more, the last few days.  He's nervous, as well, and didn't want to talk about it when it was all so 'up in the air' (his sense of it, not mine).  Also, my mother has been away for several weeks, so I hope to get the chance to talk with her some more about it, now that she's back.  Though I don't yet want to talk about it in larger forums - I haven't posted about it on Facebook, or anywhere else on-line but this blog - I do need to work through it and let go of my fears so I can embrace this experience, untainted by the past.

Thursday, 5 September 2013

September New Moon

Today is the New Moon, and so after a lovely meditation that started with the Goddess chant and then moved into silence and a feeling of connection, I drew some cards.  Once again, I used the wonderful Tarot of the Sidhe (Schiffer, 2011), which never fails to delight me.



What should I release over this lunation?  Dancer Queen - The Gift of Truth
I read this in two different ways.  First, there is the idea of releasing the negative side of the Dancer Queen (Queen of Cups).  So, a message not to get all dramatic about my emotions, to let go of past hurts, and to not be manipulative or resort to emotional blackmail.  I can certainly see where letting go of emotions from the past is very relevant to me right now!

Second, in a more literal way, this says: release the truth.  That's something I've just started doing this week, rather tentatively.  Still, the two aspects together say: don't let emotional hurts from the past stop you from speaking your truth now.  So, I shall open up a little more here, especially given the second card in this reading.

What should I embrace over this lunation?  The Hanged Man
What I need to embrace is my powerlessness to affect some of the situations in my life.  Specifically, I'm pregnant again, and just got the all clear last week that this baby doesn't have any serious genetic issues.  So, I'm at 13 weeks and still have a long way to go, during which all I can do is eat well, rest as much as possible, exercise gently, and pray. 

For me, the Hanged Man is often rather like a caterpillar in its cocoon, a time when we don't appear to be doing anything, or even to be able to do anything.  Yet, it is a fertile time of preparation.  That fits well with being pregnant, not seeming to do much nor take on much, yet there is plenty going on.  I need to embrace this seeming inactivity, to not try and push to be busy.  That's not always easy for me, but I'll certainly give it a go this month :)

Sunday, 1 September 2013

Loyalty

This morning, I managed to meditate again, despite my tiredness.  I always appreciate it when I do it, and I slept better after, too :)  The chant to the Goddess is still feeling good to me, so I'll stick with that, I think (though the cards say if I don't, that's fine, too).

I drew three cards, shown here from the Mystical Lenormand (Königsfurt-Urania, 2004):

Dog, Coffin and Man.
I read these two very different ways.  Firstly, loyalty is ending as I take new action.  That's about a project I've been devoted to for the last 10 months, which I finished and sent off yesterday.  While I'll still have to do some things for it, I no longer have to dedicate myself to it in the same way.  After it was sent, I sat down and did some work on the next project I have in mind - moving on decisively, with action to match my intention :)

The second way I read it is that loyalty ends when rationality is applied to it.  In this, I see a warning that there are some things which just aren't rational, and trying to apply logic to them diminishes rather than illuminates them.  Things like prayer, meditation and faith aren't intended to be rational.  So, I won't try to "decide" in any rational way what I "should" be doing, but just do what speaks to my spirit.  And if that changes day-to-day, that's fine, too.  The point for me right now is to honour where my belief leads me, not to be logical about it.