Friday, February 1, 2019

Tarot Blog Hop: Odd Associations


Welcome to the Imbolc Blog Hop.  Our fearless wrangler, Morgan Drake Eckstein, has tasked us to come up with the oddest associations we have for tarot cards.  When I first read this topic, I had no clue what I was going to write about, but then I started realizing that some of my associations aren't quite normal so here goes.

Once upon a time there was a sad and pathetic little pagan who had just been dumped by her husband of 22 years.  Desperate for some kind of help and to cheap to hire a therapist, she turned to tarot.  As she started playing with--and accumulating--decks, she realized that there were certain cards that she had an absolutely visceral reaction to that didn't match the explanation in the little white books that came with her cards.  Undaunted, she kept exploring and soon came to realize that the meanings in the little white books were mere suggestions and not dogma.  Eventually, as she healed and acquired more decks and did more readings, she found that some of her definitions had been "found" by other people, but others were uniquely hers.  And more importantly, she realized that was okay.

So with no further ado, here are my odd associations:

Six of Pentacles

The six of pentacles is a card of balance and it is a card about opening your heart to give and to receive.  However, the first six of pentacles image that I saw was from the DruidCraft tarot and my gut reaction to this card was that the gentleman was being asked to give everything he had.  In hind site, I realize that this reading was a reaction to where I was in my life.  I had been raised to believe that women were to sacrifice everything for their loved ones and keep nothing back for themselves.    This also perfectly described my marriage where I was expected to give everything and my husband gave nothing.  While I still don't like the image on the DruidCraft Tarot, as I've grown and matured and explored a lot more decks, I've come to realize that the card truly is about both giving and receiving.  It is about receiving gracefully and not giving more than you have to give.

Six of Cups

Another card that gives me a visceral reaction is the six of cups in the RWS deck.  While the little white book says this card is about childhood memories, happiness, joy, and new opportunities, this card has always struck me as a little bit creepy.  It feels as if the older boy us luring the young girl somewhere with the flowers.  Just like with the six of pentacles, there is a clear imbalance of power here and when I first started reading tarot, I would cringe when I pulled this card.  However, I've started to see the more positive aspects of this card as I've started to realize that if the person with the power behaves with respect, the imbalance of power can be a positive experience for both parties.

Four of Cups

While the six of cups is a traditionally positive card that I put a dark spin on, the four of cups is a more negative card that I put a more positive spin on.  I have always viewed this card as refusing something that I don't need or that is not in my best interests.  To me, it is all about someone shoving something down my throat and not taking no for an answer.  As I've dug into my past and started to explore how my worldview got so F*ed up, I've realized that this is another perception that goes back to my young adulthood.  When I was first starting out and I wanted nice things, my extended family members would buy junk from garage sales and expect me to be grateful and happy with it.  My mother expected me to take it no matter what it was even if I was seething inside.  If I tried to politely decline, I was labeled as ungrateful.  So for me, the four of cups is me crossing my arms while my relatives try to shove garbage into my hands.

Seven of Swords

The seven of swords in most decks is read as someone being sneaking and taking something that does not belong to them.  However,  over the last few years I've read that card as reclaiming instead of stealing.  For me it represents, reclaiming  my self worth and my dignity.  The stealth is taking it back from people with no boundaries and who will do anything to undermine me.  Reclaiming my dignity has been hard as I've become estranged from my mother who cannot accept that I am a whole person all by myself and who believes that I exist only for a partner or my children.  It has also been about reclaiming my dignity from my ex who flat out said he thought I "needed to be taken down a few notches."  In a perfect world, I'd be a knight and storm the castle for my dignity and self esteem, but I'm not quite there yet so I'm satisfied with sneaking in and reclaiming myself.  Outside the den of insanity, I can grow my self esteem and one day I will be in a position to storm the castle instead of sneaking in as the Seven of Swords

What I've come to realize as I've acquired more decks (some would say too many) and deepened my understanding of Tarot, I've come across some sources whose meanings for the above cards are similar to mine.  I've also realized how deeply personal Tarot truly is and that the meanings are depending on the deck, the situation, and the person doing the reading.

For some more Odd Tarot Associates, hop backward to Arwen's Blog or ahead to Joy's Blog by using the links below.

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