My daily sketches have slowed down a bit for the time being. It’s December after all and that means holidays, family, and visiting old friends. So for the time being I probably won’t be updating daily. I am still enjoying this as an exercise in creativity and tuning into the energy of the cards.
The latest card is The Empress, symbol of feminine power. I see in The Empress not only symbols of fertility and maternal caring but I also think: glamour, dazzling, bewitching, fierceness and protectiveness. The Empress gives life, celebrates life, nurtures life and infuses creation with a sense of awe.
I’m King Of The Castle
I’ve always found the Five of Wands an interesting card to come up in readings because it’s one that people have very different interpretations of. I’ve always seen it as representing something more like a play fight while some people see it as a full-on battle. I was very surprised once when a friend suggested that it looked like all the figures were working together to build something. I’d never even considered that possibility.
Fives in the Tarot generally represent the height of conflict in their suit, so I definitely see fighting in this card. But for me it’s more like a gang of unruly boys playing ‘I’m King Of The Castle’. One struggles to the top only to be deposed moments later by another who takes up the flag and leads on. There’s no viciousness in their struggle but it is very physical. Lots of shoving and jostling about. I can also see it as a heated argument, a brainstorming session or battling inner demons.
When this card comes up I ask myself, Where is the conflict in my life and what is it working towards? What comes next?
In The Garden Of Earthly Delights
A woman is shown within a flowering, verdant, garden. All of her material needs are met, she wants for nothing. But her eyes are closed and there’s no way out of her garden. Has material success come at the cost of freedom?
You’ve overcome the emotional hurdles you’ve had to jump, have gotten in touch with your inner self, faced your fears and are able to face the world with an open heart and compassion. You radiate wholeness, happiness, and abundance. One thing remains…to come down off this pinnacle and put it all into practice in the real world. You have much to give and are capable of living a life of love .
I couldn’t really see anything other than the traditional image of this card, but felt it should be darker. The swords crossing and protecting the heart were important too. Because I’ve often felt that self protection is an important element in this card.
She’s sitting in front of a sea of emotion but doesn’t dare look. She’s at a stalemate between the rational and the emotional. She can either dive into the sea or cut out her heart with the swords and move forward into that Swords Energy of thinking, mental processes, rationality, logic.
Swords Energy resides in the head and can give clarity, truth, fair judgements, good decisions. But thought patterns determine our emotions and if we don’t allow and nurture that heart energy (cups) then we can easily get stuck in negative thought-patterns, wrong judgements, coldness, cruelty etc.
The Queen’s cool demeanor is maintained by a mask covering her face. She holds her sword in front of her hiding half her face. The background shows a clear blue sky with white clouds racing.
Swords are associated with air and therefore with thought processes, rationality, logic, mental abilities etc. As the Queen of this suit I imagine her to be cold and unemotional but fair and just. She doesn’t show emotions and lives behind a mask of coldness. She can be ruthless, but also fair and will protect you if she’s on your side. She let’s her sword do the talking. She is blunt and to the point and is not concerned with diplomacy or treading carefully around someone’s feelings. Cuts to the point. Brutally honest.
I also have the sense that The Queen of Swords knows what suffering is all about. She’s been there many times and lived to tell the tale. But she’s is no drama queen. You’ll never hear her complaining, never see her shed a tear, never find her raising her voice in anger. She’s too calm and collected for any of that.
Let’s Blow The Roof Off This Mutha!
The Tower is one of my favourite cards since it heralds the end of something making way for the beginning of something new. Endings can often be traumatic and The Tower portents a sudden ending, shocking, a flash of light delivering disaster. But you can also look at it as blasting away all the negative thought patterns, mental hang-ups, emotional patterns – all the things that bind us and keep us where we are. Once these are cleared away then we have the opportunity for expansion, raised awareness, and spiritual growth. I think there’s also an element of Kundalini Rising in The Tower, rising up the spine and blasting out the top.
I’ve always felt that the people being cast out of The Tower in Rider-Waite deck don’t look too unhappy about it. In fact they seem to be smiling in my deck. In the sketch I’ve captured that joy and freedom by adding figures dancing around the base of The Tower. They’ve pushed the nuclear button and are celebrating by holding a rave. On the horizon it’s a dawn of a new day…
It’s a new dawn
It’s a new day
It’s a new life
And I’m feeling good