There’s just been an odd serious of events taking place right after the New Moon. Coincidence? Perhaps, but it’s fun to think otherwise. With that atmosphere in mind, I’m glad to see the deck I typically read with in front of me. It’s been a week, and I kind of missed it to be honest. Ah well, it even snowed again! Another study week has come and gone, and the new week welcomes the end of Hanukkah, the end of Saturnalia, and the start of Yule and Christmas. So much to talk about, and we’re going to start off by another tarot reading. Today’s card:
Nine of Wands
The Nine Card Layout Tarot Spread
Typically, I browse multiple witchcraft themed forums a day. In an effort to gain insight into as much as I can, I frequent a variety of topics. There’s forums on witchcraft, wicca, occult, freemasonry, tarot, kabbalah, and so much more. Usually, I’m not that bothered by the topics that come up and the friendly debates they spark. However recently, there was one topic that hit close to home: could someone be both a Christian and a Witch. Well, understandably, this caused a huge debate. Ever since, I’ve been left asking questions on why it’s sparked an internal one as well. So, I figured today, we’d take a break from deck interviews and explore a complex matter within tarot. This spread comes from Donald Tyson’s 1-2-3 Tarot, though slightly modified to my needs.
Row 1 – Christian Beliefs
This row contains the 8 of Cups, Ace of Cups, and the Queen of Wands. At first glance, this is an extremely strong row. It’s a spiritual row with my significator card included. A quick glance at the cards’ artwork, and we see they combine extremely well. There’s the slight hint, from the Queen of Wands facing right and away from the other cards, that there’s a disharmony however. To me, this symbolizes a divide that is not obvious. Perhaps the passion of life is slowly becoming discontent with the spiritual seeking of the grail.
Using Donald Tyson’s interpretations, the cards form the following sentence:
Indolence arising from a lack of enthusiasm for success + fertilizes that which was barren and causes renewal + with calmness seeking an honorable outcome.
A summary of this sentence would be the quicker, indolence fertilizes with calmness. This hints at an odd sort of balance within my Christian faith. There’s a sort of laziness required in order for there to be contentment. When I am calm, when I adhere to the Christian guidelines of a church, I do find my grail. However, this is extremely slow and tedious. It is not an active and fulfilling (in terms of the Wand suit’s need for adventure) path. The honorable outcome is sought, not necessarily achieved. In summary, there’s that lack of enthusiasm, and that’s really a big limitation for future growth.
Row 2 – Pagan Beliefs
This row contains The Magician, Knight of Cups, and the 2 of Swords. At first glance, this row is extremely complex. The presence of The Magician is not lost on me, nor is that of Lancelot (in the Knight of Cups). A quick interpretation, and I can’t help but notice the themes of spirituality, being in a difficult time, and the divine energy current. There’s also the idea of the Knight carrying this knowledge to the person in need of it. In many ways, just on the surface, I can see how these ideas might apply to my pagan path both now and prior.
The sentence for this particular row, according to the book, would be:
Skill in the secret ways of nature and hidden motives of humanity + conceals the true purpose that gives motivation + with equality sacrificing advantage for truth.
Thankfully the summary sentence makes things a little easier to understand as, skill conceals with equality. I find it interesting that both rows have a card that focuses on motivation. In the case of my pagan beliefs, the purpose and motivation is hidden behind skill, in this case, magical skill. While it’s actually difficult to interpret this one, I think it reflects something I’ve only come to learn recently about my pagan faith. There’s a sacrifice we all have to make if we want knowledge, it’s simply how it is. Likewise, the more knowledge we gain, the more it tends to be hidden in the everyday.
Row 3 – Combining Beliefs
This row contains The Emperor, the Page of Pentacles (r), and The Chariot (r). In the book, reversed cards are important, so I did create a couple for this reading. Noticeably, it took until the third row to draw even a single reversed card. There’s also The Chariot, which is connected to my Life Path number. Another noteworthy bit of information is the opposites presented in the Peaceful King (The Emperor) and the Warrior King (The Chariot). In the middle is the scholar, trapped between these opposing forces. Perhaps this is a great bit more symbolic than intended.
The particular sentence for these cards with reversals accounted for, would be:
Leadership capable in assessing the needs of those it protects + squanders imprudently the reserves of value + with defeat the final consequence for the vanity of powerless authority.
Alright, why don’t we just take a look at the short sentence because the longer one is really complicated, leadership squanders with defeat. I had a difficult time with this, and so, I went a bit further and came up with this, authority dissipates confusion. Usually, I wouldn’t go so far, but I think this is appropriate in this case. When we look at it from this angle, we see a clear message that’s within context. Authority simply dissipates or lessens the confusion. In many ways, this might actually take into account the opposites involved with the odd Page of Pentacles reversed in the middle.
The topic of mixing beliefs is a really complicated one, and this spread has helped immensely. While I’m definitely pagan oriented by today’s standards, Christianity plays an important role in my path. This role is actually a little undervalued, as it maintains order. There are so many paths and Traditions within witchcraft, that walking that road gets complicated. For me, it’s a bit overwhelming at times even. This reading has shed light on how these two paths meet for me personally. Christianity maintains a philosophy, an outlook I can compare and contrast against. Paganism is the outward expression. Together, they form the path of one very complicated and well intentioned witch.