A return…

Can’t believe quite how long it’s been since I last posted here but it has been a busy year! I took a little bit of time away from tarot to explore other types of cartomancy and have a baby. 🙂

Life has settled a bit now so I can start blogging again and share my experiences with the cards for those who are interested. I’ll be expanding this blog to include more posts on other divination systems and the first set of new posts will be about ones I have been exploring in my tarot break.

Looking forward to sharing them all!

Work, rest and pay?

How can I make the most of new opportunities at work?

The Devil – Four of Swords – Eight of Coins

Interesting to see the Eight of Coins here today as I had been reflecting on my last reading and come to see this as also signifying the offer of a pay increase in recognition of my skills. It makes sense for this to appear in this work focussed question.

The Devil as the first card suggests that it will not be easy to make the most of the new opportunities presented to me. It can stand for an unhealthy obsession and clinging on. I also see it those things which seem very tempting on the surface and which encourage us to throw long-term caution to the wind in pursuit of a short-term fix of pleasure. It is unrestrained impulse. Paul Huson also suggests in his LWB that this card can stand for tyranny which brings adversity. This fits quite well with what I know of my workplace. There is a tyranny of sorts in that the same small group of people have been in charge for a very long time and it is difficult to propose something new. There is a clinging to an old system which is driven by passion and very strong feeling. The temptation may also be to simply work too hard. There is an interesting expression ‘working like a demon’ which has connotations of being obsessed with work and never giving yourself a break.

The Four of Swords often has the meaning of rest or retirement. In this situation, I can see it as advice to remove myself from the passions represented by that Devil and take time out to contemplate the situation carefully. It can also indicate a retirement. Well, I’m nowhere near retirement age but wonder if there might be an unexpected development for someone else.

The Eight of Coins brings the reward and recognition for hard work and a job done well.

It’s quite a complicated set of cards but the implication seems to be that I need to try and keep out of the politics and keep working hard. There is also the hint here that some aspects are being controlled by larger forces and I may not have as much ability to influence events as I think. Work hard, rest later and hope I receive payment. 🙂

Dame Fortune Devil Four of Swords Eight of Coins







Image copyright 2007 Paul Huson, 2008 Lo Scarabeo

Getting the Glad Rags On

I’m not really one for doing daily draws with cards – a few times a week is quite sufficient for me – so for the last few days I have spent some time simply shuffling my deck and looking carefully at the cards. There are all sorts of interesting little symbols which have particular meaning and add dimension to readings. I’ve also downloaded the extended LWB from Lo Scarabeo’s site which helps to explain some of the imagery which piqued my interest. It is obvious that Paul Huson has put a huge amount of scholarship into this deck – it’s one of those where things appear in the imagery quite deliberately. It’s a fascinating trail to follow. I’ll write a post detailing some of these soon.

In the meantime, here is my three card draw for today.

Significator – Eight of Coins – Three of Coins

The first card I pulled is the Significator. It is supposed to represent the person asking the question. I didn’t deliberately choose this card but picked it at random. When this happens, I tend to see the message in the other cards as being particularly significant for me.

The Eight of Coins shows a young woman handing over some money to pay for a fabulous crown being fashioned by the craftsman. There is obviously some important occasion coming up where she will need to dress her best.

The Three of Coins has a herald sharing some news – someone of importance is coming to visit. The clover shows that this is someone held in great esteem. Suddenly, the need for the woman to look her best becomes clear.

These cards suggest to me that I may need to splash out on a new outfit to prepare for an important visitor. It seems to be linked to a work event. Alternatively, I may be the craftsman and need to help someone else put on their best possible face.

Dame Fortune Significator Eight of Coins Three of Coins

Image Copyright 2007 Paul Huson

Image Copyright 2008 Lo Scarabeo

The Wheel Turns

I’ve made the decision to go back and use a favourite deck intensively for a while.

In my foray of trying out a different deck every week I really learnt what type of deck suits me and which are best left as collectors items. It has meant that I have became far less likely to jump on the latest releases thanks to enthusiastic gushing of others. My bank balance is also quite thankful. 🙂 I’ve been craving time with just one deck for a long time – the weekly deck-hopping just wasn’t satisfying me anymore. Enter Dame Fortune’s Wheel!

Regular readers will remember how much I enjoyed using Dame Fortune’s Wheel created by Paul Huson and published by Lo Scarabeo. It is based on Etteilla’s meanings rather than RWS/Golden Dawn and that is very appealing at the moment. So I’m afraid there won’t be much variety here for a while – at least until the Spring Equinox – but I’m looking forward to delving deeper with this little gem.

The Moon – Ten of Batons – Knight of Coins

My eye is immediately drawn to the snake in the centre who is curled round the tree but looks ready to strike and protect what is his. It is a card which warns of cheating. Someone is planning a ruse and all is not quite as it may seem. There is a little hint of hypocrisy. The way he is curled round the tree makes me think that this snake is acting out of self-interest and wants to protect what is his.

The Moon brings an increase but can also indicate that something is hidden in the half-light. A time of growth approaches but something else lurks.  It seems that this snake is what is hiding in the shadows – he acts as a second warning that something is ‘false’, things are not as they may appear. With the moon, I’m inclined to think that it is my perceptions which are false or that I’m being false to protect something which is important to me.

The Knight of Coins brings something useful, an advantage of some sort. It is this which the snake would like to protect.

Overall, there is a message of a time of increase and something advantageous coming my way. However, there is a falseness to it – whether this is a hidden pitfall to what seems positive on the surface or a need to be sly and false myself to protect it, might be too early to say.

Dame Fortune Moon Ten of Batons Knight of Coins






Image copyright 2007 Paul Huson, 2008 Lo Scarabeo



Today I decided to finally use a spread I’ve been wanting to try for ages. It is a general spread created by Chiriku on Aeclectic Tarot which can be customised. The spread can be found here: http://www.tarotforum.net/showthread.php?t=185514

I like the fact that it is adaptable and can be shortened if an in-depth or predictive reading is not required.

It’s been a while since I’ve done something in-depth for myself beyond the usual 2 or 3 card draws and the beginning of a new year is always a good time to take stock.


1) Where I have come from – The Star

I have come from a place of hope and healing. The Star suggests a difficult time where I may have looked to spiritual guidance or direction. It often prompts questions in me of whether or not I’m on the right path – is this destined to succeed/fail? It gives the hope that what I seek is possible even if it isn’t here yet. I feel like I have been in this hopeful place for a long time and today I finally had some news which gives it more substance.

2) The cards draw my attention to – King of Swords

This brings to mind a situation where a fair and impartial judgement will be called for. It will require rational thought as well as keeping eye on the long-term strategy. It will be important not to act rashly but to consider all possibilities. As far as possible, I will need to keep emotions out of the choice. This will not be easy as I tend to think with my heart rather than my head at times.

3) I am affected by – 6 of Swords

I am affected by a journey I made recently from a difficult place. I got in that boat and left, hoping to find less choppy waters or even the greener grass on the other side of the river bank. However, I have struggled to leave the emotional baggage behind and have instead carried it with me. In some ways it keeps me in a circular loop with the Star – I keep going over old ground and trying to see if there is some higher message instead of letting go and allowing myself to heal. The King of Swords energy would be very useful here to help me take a dispassionate look and see what ballast can be cut free.

4) Stop doing – 8 of Swords

The first phrase which sprang to mind was to stop tying myself in knots. I see myself as bound and imprisoned but those ties and swords are my own creations. I feel restricted but if I could just removes the blindfold, I would see that the way ahead is clear.

5) Start doing – The Empress

The Empress brings a call to nurture. I think here there is a message to nurture myself, to treat myself gently. It is also a call to creativity – the Empress is pregnant with creation and abundance and I need to tap into that flow within myself. In particular, I see this card as a reminder that I can create my own abundance. It’s time to embody that Empress energy in my own life.

General 1













6, 7 and 8) Prepare myself for – 5 of Swords, 3 of Wands and 2 of Cups

The 5 of Swords is such an ambiguous card for me. Sometimes I identify with the winner but mostly I feel that I’ve come out on the losing end of a fight. This time it is the winner which stands out to me. There will be a battle of wits which, for once, I could win. Again, the King of Swords influence is felt here – I need to keep my cool and not let emotional entanglements get the better of me.  The 3 of Wands points to coming results in a new endeavour – the idea has been launched and the ships will start to come in. The 2 of Cups brings with it the promise of a new partnership.

9) A gift for me – Strength

This is a positive end to the spread. Despite some tough experiences, I have the strength to get through them. I often think of this card as a sort of moral strength too. At least some of my tough experiences recently have come from an unwillingness to compromise my ideals and ‘play the game’.  There seems to be a thread running through this reading that it might actually be necessary for me to play a ‘game’ in a battle of wits but that I can keep hold of that sense of fairness.

General 2

Do and Don’t Do

A simple 2 card spread for today.

Do – Ace of Swords

There is something quite dynamic about this card. The sword points downwards and alongside it four feathers bend to meet it at its point. It creates the impression of energy being funnelled and focused in one direction. The space behind is completely white which gives me the feeling of clarity and lack of distractions.

My advice for today would be to focus on the tasks I want to complete, minimising distractions. With a clear intention, I can find the mental energy to get the job done.

Don’t do – 5 of Cups

No wallowing allowed! This card is in stark contrast to the sword. While the Ace of Swords brings with it a mental clarity and the ability to cut through the emotional stuff, the 5 of Cups is all about allowing those emotions to take over. Specifically, it points to a tendency to focus on past regrets rather than seeing the blessings in the present.

This card feels very apt today. It is my intention (Ace of Swords) to finish making a Christmas present and write some cards. The 5 of Cups is a warning not to indulge in ‘I should have started this earlier…maybe a different fabric would have been better…I should have ordered this months ago, now it might not come on time and they are going to hate their Christmas present’.

It’s the small regrets but also some bigger ones. There are a couple of situations in my life where I regret actions which I did/didn’t take in the past which are now impacting on my present. I’m finding it hard to let go of those feelings even though I know objectively (Ace of Swords) that I couldn’t have acted differently at the time.

A superficial message comes combined with a deeper one as is so often the way.

Gill Ace of Swords 5 of Cups

A Lucky Find

Last weekend I took a trip to Amsterdam. It’s always a treat to spend time wandering around its canals and relaxing in a cafe. On one of my excursions I came across a shop selling a selection of spiritual books and paraphernalia. To my delight, at the back of the store was a tarot selection. Naturally, I couldn’t resist going over to have a look.

It had a very good selection and one deck in particular caught my eye – the Gill Tarot. As far as I’m aware, this deck is out of print and asking prices on Ebay tend to be quite high. Yet here it was on a shop shelf right in front me! It’s a deck I’ve wanted for a while but could never really justify paying the high prices for. It goes without saying that I bought it. 🙂

Queen of Swords – 4 of Cups -2 of Disks

The Queen is facing forward, holding her sword aloft. Her sword is one of reason, discrimination and truth. I need to use my intelligence to tackle what lies directly in front of me – the 4 of Cups. The 4 of Cups as a central card indicates that at the moment there is a feeling of ‘enough’. The liquid is pouring down, filling the cups to overflowing and collecting in a pool at the bottom. Satisfaction in life circumstances is not achieved and there is instead a feeling of stagnation. The Queen needs to analyse and cut through these feelings in order to get to the harmony of the 2 of Disks. The unity depicted is the union of spirit and matter. My emotional malaise needs to be tackled before I can feel in harmony again.

Gill Queen of Swords 4 of Cups 2 of Disks


Distant Possibilities

2 of Swords -The Star -Queen of Swords

There are two swords cards flanking a major suggesting an issue of importance which is impacting on a mental level.

The 2 of Swords is static, in a state of suspension. A choice is implicated but there is no way of moving. This card brings a temporary sense of peace – for the moment at least, mental anguish is stilled and a quiet reflection is achieved. However, this may in part be due to the blindfold and a wilful desire not to look at the things which will disturb the peace.

The Star brings hope, healing and guidance. It is a glimmer of light in the darkness. If we can just fix on the star which is our destiny, help is available to get us there. However, these possibilities lie in the distance and will not manifest immediately. All that is available now is peace and healing.

The Queen of Swords has her back turned to the previous two. She is seated on her throne and looks in command. She seems to have evolved from the woman in the Two of Swords. Now her blindfold is off, she has taken up one sword and made her choice. She can leave the past behind and focus firmly on the future.

Opportunity Knocks

Yesterday I received a package in the post – the Dark Crystal Illuminated tarot by Carol Herzer. I’ve wanted one of Carol’s tarots for a long time and finally had the opportunity and funds to get one.

I like the wintery feel of this deck with its hues of blue and swirling whites. It seems the perfect accompaniment as we head towards the darkest part of the year.

What opportunity is knocking at my door? Page of Cups

I always get a sense of youthful enthusiasm from the pages and here this page is listening intently to the fish. It doesn’t seem at all strange that there is a fish in a cup and that it appears to be whispering something. It can be a message of the heart or something creative and imaginative. There is an opportunity to experience a child-like wonder and a fresh, unjaded perspective.

What will I potentially risk if I open the door? 9 of Wands

There is a risk that I will be on my guard. The person in the 9 of Wands has erected a barrier and is keepinga watchful eye. Any threats are kept well away. There is a danger that if I open the door, my own barriers will be down and I risk letting something more threatening through. At least, this is how I percieve it. I have my guard up a lot of the time and it is possible that this defensiveness is leading to missed opportunities.

What will I gain if I open the door? The Devil

Well, what could be more scary than opening the door to the Devil! 🙂 I always think of the Thoth devil when I interpret this card as I don’t tend to see our material existence as some kind of terrible bondage full of things which tempt and trap us in a prison of flesh. So for me this indicates a gaining in the enjoyment of the material pleasures of existence. Allowing the creative life force to flow and seeing past the illusions that have kept me trapped. This links with the previous card in that the guard is shutting something out based on his illusionary fears of a threat. By opening the door, I will gain an understanding of what the illusion is which keeps me fearful of opening up.

Crone Wisdom

Today I am using the Tarot of the Crone by Ellen Lorenzi-Prince. It is centred on the archetype of the Crone and is a deck suitable for deep reflection.

What energies are present in my life right now? Two of Cups, Four of Disks, Shadow of Cups.
The image on the 2 of Cups is rather arresting. It is one which intentionally plays with a duality and forces us to look twice. I love how there seem to be two cloaked figures bending towards each other in a desire to connect. It reflects a desire to merge and connect deeply with something or someone. So much so, that the 2 cease to be and become one. There is an energy of emotional convergence related to something deeply desired.

The 4 of Disks brings us back to earth and more practical matters. It represents a safe place to retreat and relax in – somewhere which is welcoming and peaceful. There is only a simple picture of a standing stone. How does my living space nurture and support me? At the moment, I’m moving towards something I desire but it may be a bit of a roller-coaster. This card reminds me to keep a sanctuary.

The final card represents an emotional drowning. There is a need here to sink into something, to wallow deeply. A sense of separate identity is lost which may be necessary but care must be taken not to sink indefinitely. It reminds me a little of those flotation tanks. Sometimes, completely switching off is a good thing but it is a state which could lead to apathy and lack of desire to do anything. It can represent a passive acceptance. I need to guard against this.