A little love for here and now

You know that light bulb that has been on since the early 1900s at that fire department?

According to wikipedia, the Centennial Light has been in almost continuous operation since 1901 (longer than the RWS Tarot has existed!) with untold shifts of first responders who can attest to it. It has never burned bright – maybe 40 watts when it was brand new – but it has burned long.

That is the kind of energy this week seems to have.

The here and now deserves our love and attention just as much as our dreams and aspirations do.

The four of pentacles is the fading energy card. Pentacles have to do real world practical things, often money, wealth or career. The four in particular has to do with watching the budget and minding your money, always a good thing. But taken to extreme, it can also symbolize greed or hoarding based in fear. The fact that this card is in the fading position hints that the issue around physical things or monetary / budget issues are likely to be short-lived. The advice is to not let fear drive decisions this week. Logic and practicality is always the primary advice for money matters.

In other words, be careful with the budget, use logic and practical knowledge and don’t take financial advice from Tarot cards.

The Chariot is our current energy card, and the core of this week’s message. It is from the major arcana so even if it is a low-wattage kind of week the ideas here still carry importance. The message may speak softly, but it really really means what it says.

The Chariot card is classically about focus and attention to the present moment. I typically see it during more high energy, high intensity times, but the message today is still the same: Pay attention.

I often call this the ‘test pilot’ card. If you are flying a supersonic jet, you have to keep your mind on what you are doing as you are doing it or bad things are going to happen and happen fast. Whenever you see the Chariot card pull your head out of the past or future or wherever else your thoughts are lingering and be mindful of the present moment. Be as fully in this moment as you can be.

As I write this I am reminded of Polnareff and his Silver Chariot stand from the JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure anime. I have no remote idea what that has to do with anything, but if it resonates with you, you are welcome to the connection.

There we have body and mind. The four of pentacle makes a point about the physical realm. The Chariot makes a point about mental focus. Now the Hermit, also a major arcana card, brings spirit and emotions into the mix.

The Hermit card almost always has a lamp or light of some kind on it. It can symbolize enlightenment or wisdom in a high spiritual sense. In this time, it feels like the wattage is turned down on that too. The Hermit’s light is not aiming for ultimate truth, but rather simple illumination.

Whatever your emotions are, point the light at them and see them for what they are. Accept them as they are. You don’t have to act on them. You don’t even necessarily have to express them, unless you want to.

Whatever they are, let them see the light of day. Are you happy? Enjoy! Are you angry, anxious, afraid, or stressed? That’s OK too. Let the so-called negative emotions have their moment in the light too. Accept that they exist and are what they are. Abide with the tough stuff for a little while. You may be surprised how simple acknowledgement and allowing them to be will help uncomfortable emotions to simply dissolve. Or at least lessen intensity for a while.

The trick is not to let that turn into dwelling or energizing them. That’s where we get back to the central message of the Chariot again – of bring our mind back from whatever caused the difficult feelings and refocus on the present moment.

In this present moment, I have a few fast reminders for us. The comments are open to everyone here on SageWordsTarot.com plus there is the contact form on the Ask Me Anything page where you can, you know, ask me anything. There is a chance you might get a one card Tarot reading in reply or that your questions might inspire a Q&A blog post. Of course anything that goes into the blog is always very, very edited to protect privacy.

Also a reminder that none of this is monetized. I don’t see a penny from any advertisements you see, so these free Tarot readings are fueled by you through private Tarot reading purchases, paid subscriptions and virtual coffee tips not to mention plenty of real world coffee too.

Thanks so much for reading! I’ll see you at the next sip!

What are you waiting for?

Energy path Tarot reading for the week of 15 May 2023

Hello and welcome to Sage Sips. I’m glad you are here and right off thank you for hanging in with this through all the changes in 2023. With the demise of WordPress to Spotify integration and PodCastle not being as free as they made themselves out to be, the podcast is once again on hiatus, possibly permanently.

As we go along, if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to ask. Blog comments are open, or you can use the “ask me anything” page on sage words tarot dot com. Substack chats and ko-fi DMs are open to subscribers.

This week we are working entirely from the minor arcana. Sometimes all minor arcana can hint at a low key or low energy week but it doesn’t mean it is an inactive or stagnant week. There is a sense of rootedness in the physical realm thanks to the king of pentacles card. When pentacles are around, there is always a sense of practicality. This is the suit of the physical realm and the classic element of earth and all of the no-nonsense no-drama style that you would expect. The other two cards are both from the suit of swords. Swords is connected to the element of air, but there is nothing airy-fairy about them. Swords also symbolize mind and intellect and action. Put all of that together and this week definitely calls for a head over heart approach. Cool incisive logic is your friend. Compared to the high flying ideals of recent weeks this might seem low energy by comparison, but careful precise action is action just the same. This isn’t the withdrawn or introverted energy we’ve seen recently either. This is deliberate, inexorable forward movement.

The mental image is a glacier flattening the landscape or the slow crumbling ah-ah lava that is just as powerful as the fast flowing type. The energy for this week may be slow, but it is oh so focused on being efficient, effective and enduring. The energy this week seems to be putting the level in level-headed.

Kings are leaders, so if the pentacle card represents concrete wealth, money or career, then the two together hints at a wise use of resources. Don’t let things waste either by sitting and mouldering or by being used frivolously or unwisely. Don’t allow things to sit and spoil, but don’t be a spendthrift either. This is in the fading energy position. Going back to the glacier mental image, I see small rivulets of melted ice, small streams of water flowing quickly down the front of the glacier. That feels like a quicker movement, an influx of resources may come, but not quite yet. It’s not a forever thing, but right now is a time to play the cards you are dealt and work with what you have on hand.

I get the sense of a short time or a not-serious wait. Here I get the mental image of that TV show where chefs compete to make the best dish from the ingredients given to them in a basket.

The current energy card is the knight of swords in reverse. I’ll spare you yet another explanation about how I handle reversed cards. If you have questions about reversals, what that means or how to handle them in a reading – please, ask away in the comments, ask me anything page, or other contacts as listed.

The knight of swords is usually a card of daring, or action and supreme self-confidence. Today the reversal feels significant, it feels like all of those things are blocked or hampered. It feels less like the afraid side of timid and more like a lack of confidence, or negative self-talk. This card isn’t talking to the part of you that is afraid…fear is there for a good reason sometimes. This is talking to the part of you that says “I can’t.” You can. You can do something. Who says you have to do what is expected? Who says you have to do what other people do? Instead of saying “I can’t” figure out what IS within your reach and your resources and do that. Every little bit helps and something is better than nothing in this case.

The growing energy is the eight of swords. Sometimes in a reading a card can serve as a highlight, an underline or an exclamation point to another card’s message. I think that is the case here. The energy of practicality, and level-headed, mind over emotion, deliberate, considered action may with us for a while. The eight of swords is working with the reversed knight to remind us that working within our means and doing what we can do is better than stopping dead in your tracks and giving up, doing nothing.

Take inventory. Make a no-nonsense plan. Act within your means and resources but act. Don’t let “I can’t” take you prisoner. Just because you can’t do one thing doesn’t mean the other things you CAN do aren’t needed or valuable. When it comes to doing the things within your means, what are you waiting for?

Thank you so much for reading and listening.

This free Tarot content is fueled by real coffee, the virtual coffees on ko-fi, paid subscriptions and your private Tarot reading purchases. That allows me to put your message first, not an advertiser’s. Please buy me a coffee or become a “Sage Sips” member with a Ko-fi or Substack subscription today.

Thanks again. See you at the next sip!

At Face Value

Sage Sips: a Tarot look at the week ahead in the time it takes to sip from your coffee

Hello and welcome to Sage Sips the blog, the newsletter and, so it seems, the podcast.

I think we finally and for real have everything set up under th new name. Sage words tarot is the main website with links to all the good stuff including private readings you can order anytime, no appointment needed.

Sage Sips is the name of the active podcast. The old feed under the title “Sage’s Short Sip Tarot” has been deleted or soon will be. Sage Sips is the name of this blog on ko-fi and substack where you can also get these Pathway readings for the week ahead on Mondays, but also subscriber exclusive content at other times.

Simple! And hopefully easier to spell and remember than the name Tao Craft was. So now that all of that is apparently nailed down for the moment, let’s look at the cards and energies ahead for this week. When I say energies ahead I don’t mean what is going to happen.


That is 100% up to you and your individual circumstances. These pathway readings are all about the energy conditions that you have to work with, the vibe ahead can help you to make better decisions and take the best actions for you as an individual. It’s like how the general weather report for everybody helps you to decide what to wear out of your individual wardrobe.

You can decide to bring an umbrella if pouring rain is on the horizon, that sort of metaphoric thing.

This week has big energy, but it is big yin energy. There are two major arcana cards, death and the high priestess. Both cards are inverted, and that feels very significant this time.

If you’ve listened or read for any amount of time, you know that I use pure intuition when it comes to reversed cards, that is to say cards that appear upside down relative to the person doing the reading.

Every card has every shade of meaning: black or white, positive or negative, encouraging or discouraging and every shade of grey in between. I tend to reach for all the shades of feeling for every card anyway, so a physical reversal may or may not be meaningful. It might hint that the part of life represented by the card’s position in the layout is blocked, or hindered or difficult somehow. Just as likely, it could be a hint at a particular set of meanings or key words for the card rather than the layout position. Or, just as likely as either of those, it could mean nothing at all.

In this case it feels like a pull. It feels like advice so slow down, to pull back. I’ve never actually done this, but I imagine this is the mental and emotional equivalent of swimming in thick syrup. There is power here, but it is like the power a bowl holds…its usefulness is in the empty space as much as the bowl that defines it.

There is a sense of tension and expectancy, a period of necessary emptiness and quiet to give future progress somewhere to go. That’s why the two major arcana cards are standing on their heads.

The mental image here is two things:

First is the three of wands card. I don’t think that card is significant with regard to its meaning or key words. It’s more of the feeling that is evoked by the artwork on the card, usually of a figure gazing at the horizon. That lends a sense of waiting and expectancy and holding space for hopes like the bowl analogy earlier.

Second is a diagram that looks like a circle within a circle acting as a hinge or a joint. As quiet or empty as this time may seem, it is necessary in order for things to turn in a better direction. It feels almost like the stars are pivoting around this space in time.

The Eight of Cups is the fading energy. That suits the nature of the card so well, that it may not really begin to fade all that much until we are well into the week. It may stick around for a while, actually. The eight of cups is about endings, about walking away from something for your own good or for the good another. It hints at a bittersweet or melancholy separation that at the same time is utterly necessary. It’s about moving on toward something better even when letting go of the past isn’t a joy or delight. Bittersweet, yes, but very very necessary. This card hints at one of those times where you must acknowledge those melancholy or nostalgic feelings even as you definitively let go and move on.

The current energy is death in reverse. Death is the card of change. It is different from the change we see in the Wheel of Fortune card. This change isn’t cyclic. It isn’t about change within a larger or grander pattern. The change in the death card is more permanent, and much more transformational. There are reasons this is inverted death rather than the wheel card or the hanged man card. This isn’t a pattern of progress – wait – more progress. This is cocoon time. The caterpillar is dead and gone, but it isn’t quite time for the butterfly to emerge either. The cake is in the oven, the butterfly is in the cocoon. Profound change is happening, but it is happening slowly, quietly, and subtly.

The High Priestess is sitting in front of one black and one white pillar. There is a very Tao Te Ching feeling here. The Priestess is usually a symbol of cosmic mysteries with very yin, dark, hidden qualities.

Here is where the Taoism part comes in.

You can’t have darkness without light. The mysterious and obvious are opposites that define each other just like light and dark define each other and the solid parts and empty parts of a bowl define each other.

As for the growing energy card, the High Priestess in reverse reminds us that sometimes you can take things at face value or, as Sigmund Freud famously said, “sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.”

As big and soul-shaking as the walking-away energies in the eight of cups and the death card may be, the advice here is to not read more into things than are already there. The recent past has been difficult and chaotic and changing enough without us heaping unfounded assumptions on top of everything else.

During this time of quiet transformation it is probably best to take the week at face value.

Thank you all for reading, and once the podcast is back up and running, for listening too.

All of my free Tarot content is readers and listener supported. No monetization means your Tarot message comes first with me, not an advertiser’s message. If you like what you see in these weekly readings, please consider a private reading, subscribing the exclusive content on ko-fi or substack or sending a tip to the virtual coffee mug.

Thanks again, see you at the next sip!

Advance – in an inward direction

Sage Sips is Tarot wisdom in the time it takes to sip from your coffee.

Subscribers can read more about today’s card on Ko-fi and Substack late evening 5/5

card: public domain, quote via brainyquote.com, photo by the author

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Mid-card Mid-week: Flame On

Second look at this week’s “current energy” card

1909 RWS Tarot, public domain

It’s Wednesday! Let’s revisit the middle card (current energy) from our look-ahead reading from Monday and see how the energy is unfolding for this week.

It’s an interesting phenomenon in professional Tarot reading.

Sometimes the cards will piggyback a message or energy for me along with the collective message for the blog or the specific message for a private client. Sometimes it feels sort of disconnected, like being the pizza delivery person with no connection to the party going on inside the house.

Today it’s a little bit of both.

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Week Ahead: Modern Art!

Three card Pathway reading for the week ahead. Sage Sips is Tarot contemplation in the time it takes to sip from your coffee

Modern art!

Matt Smith was so excellent as the Doctor, when he left and Peter Capaldi came into the role, I wasn’t sure what to think, as is the case for most Doctor Who fans when regeneration time comes around. Then they showed the old “Fires of Pompeii” episode where Capaldi had previously played the role of Caecilius the marble merchant during David Tennant’s time as the Doctor. When toga-clad Capaldi raised his arms in a BEHOLD gesture and declared the Tardis to be “MODERN ART!” I’m like ok, ok…he can be the Doctor now.

If Tom Baker was the Doctor you wanted to be your dad, and Tennant and Smith were the Doctors you wanted to be your very best friend, then Capaldi was the Doctor I wanted to BE.

Why is my Whovian fan-girl side bringing up this obscure Doctor Who reference? Because Caecilius’ enthusiasm is exactly the vibe for this week’s reading, except maybe turned up to volume 11.

This is the week for passionate artists and creatives. It’s giving me itchy knitting fingers.

The fading energy card feels like early week energy more than anything that is fading, really. There is a ‘ get while the getting is good’ vibe about it. If you are feeling inspired, act sooner rather than later. This is the knight of cups after all. Knight cards are all about action. Cups are emotions. Grab the chance to express yourself and how you feel as soon as the opportunity presents itself. Don’t wait to appreciate your modern art!

The current energy card, which we will revisit later this week with paid subscribers, is the Ace of Swords. Sword cards are more precise and intellectual than cups, but they too can hint at action. Swords are connected to the classic element air, and the single upright sword on the ace card has a sweeping, lifting, rising energy. The word INSPIRATION comes strongly to mind here. If you have been in a creative slump, or feeling uninspired in any context, keep your eyes open and be ready, that may turn around soon. Inspiration is on the way, it seems.

For those of us who have had to focus on practical, mundane day-job energies this past weekend, the ace feels more like getting a second wind, a revitalization rather than some sort of beginning inspiration. Which energy carries the week for you depends on where you are starting out today (Merry Monday everyone!) If you are coming into the week fresh after the weekend, then fresh starts ahead. If, like me, you have been in practical, time-to-make-the-donuts mode, hang in there. A fresh gust of wind beneath your wings is on the way.

The Chariot from the major arcana is the growing energy. This also gives the impression of growing energy and movement through the week as a whole. I get the mental image of that Japanese painting The Great Wave. That’s the nature of the Chariot card, but we are also moving from minor arcana into major arcana energy. Heads up, pay attention, stay on target. The energy this week is on the upswing, a growing wave that hasn’t crested yet. Growing energy and faster movement also needs more focus and attention. Early week may be the time for daydreams and wandering minds that make the initial creative connections, but later in the week comes the time to execute. Later on, as the energy grows, we will need focus and attention to make those misty drifting creative ideas into a more tangible reality.

There is absolutely no logical reason why, but clear quartz points and herkimer diamonds come to mind too. Lore around clear quartz is that it is an energy amplifier. Quartz points, especially tourmalated quartz (clear with small spiky inclusions of black tourmaline) are thought to support guidance (the spikes and points symbolize something ‘pointing the way’ for us.)

The keys for the week are self expression, creativity, art, increasing energy, increasing need for focus and attention.

So go, make life into your own work of modern art.

And if you like what you see in these general audience collective energy readings, I hope you’ll consider a private reading. I’ve really been vibing with email readings lately. No ‘bots here. Just me, my deck, and my laptop creating something unique and special, attuned to you individually plus a photo of your real world cards. We both can have a high level of confidence in email readings because let’s face it, there is no room for shenanigans in email Tarot. I can’t read your body language or ask leading questions – suspect cold readings or stage mentalism just isn’t possible this way. On my side, not only do I get to stay in my comfy work from home clothes and sip all the coffee I want, it’s easier mental work. I don’t have to be on guard for some sort of ego trip from unconsciously slipping into a body language leading question kind of cold reading. Doing email readings keeps you honest. It’s just us and intuition / energy / spirit, no buffer or go between or shady stuff for either of us.

I hope you enjoyed the free for all posts last week. Please consider joining the Tarot Table on Ko-fi or subscribing to Sage Sips on Substack to get the deeper dive Tarot long reads and Q&A posts that are on the way.

Thanks again for reading. I appreciate you.

See you at the next sip!

Slow progress is still progress

Energy is energy, movement is movement, progress is progress.

Lately I feel pulled to use Wednesdays to take a second look at the “current energy” card from Monday’s week-ahead pathway reading. That will let us take a little deeper look at the card, and do a mid-week mid-card check-in to see how that “current energy” is actually unfolding.

As much as I love the Alleyman’s Tarot that we used for the full reading on monday and as much as I like the Marigold Tarot deck when it has crossed my path, the Waite Smith is still my favorite version of the knight of Pentacles for the sole reason it was a meme for a while. I don’t know who did it, but imagine the card (above) captioned with “Behold! The field where I grow my f*cks! Lift up thine eyes and you will see that it is barren!”

The farther into my genX INTP middle age, the more I appreciate the validity and value of that little sentiment.

The Knight is an action card. Pentacles are both the earth element suit and the suit representing the physical realm, the career and wealth part of life.

Earth moves at a different pace.

This is turning out to be a very earth element kind of week, with the fire and fury of the knight of wands moving away more quickly than I gave it credit for.

Pentacle knights are still knights, and action is still action. Even when it is at the pace of tectonic plates shifting. Even if it is on a geologic time scale, change is change, action is action. On the surface it might seem like not giving a f*ck, but that’s not really what is going on. Energy is never destroyed, it only changes form. A slow grind can reduce obstacles to dust just as much as an explosion can. The secret for that is to let your f*ckfield be barren when it comes to time.

The advice from this card is to persist, but let go of your expectations about how fast things happen. A horse, a bicycle and a motorcycle can all move you the same distance down the same road perfectly fine.

Don’t discount any slow or small progress you’ve made this week. It counts.

Moving in a direction you didn’t expect is still movement.

Unplugging is still doing something.

“Time you enjoyed wasting is not wasted time”

John Lennon

Thanks for reading! See you at the next sip!

Free for all week! – all content on this blog, the ko-fi blog and the NEW Sage Sips newsletter on Substack is free this week!

Forward and Back

A Tarot reading for your week ahead in the time it takes to sip from your coffee

Right here, right now is all there is. All we have is this present moment. Our superpower is that we can choose IF and how to connect it to the past and the future.

Merry Monday everyone!

I like the “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it” approach. Simple is always best. Right now, functionality seems more important than elegance. Unless and until I get feedback from all of you to the contrary, I’m going to write these free for all Monday Week Ahead Pathway readings in the same format as I would a private three-card Tarot reading. It’s comfortable. It works. And it’s a Monday where I could use a few extra sips of coffee. Here we go.

The cards today are:

  • Fading energy: Knight of Wands
  • Current energy: Knight of Rings (pentacles)
  • Growing energy: The Hermit

General Pattern:

The Two minor arcana cards are both court cards which holds a little more energetic ‘zing’ than the numbered cards or the ace. These two minor arcana cards lead into a major arcana in the growing energy position. I take that to be a clue that the vague ennui and introvert energy from the past few weeks has indeed swung in the other direction. This is the starter’s signal we’ve been waiting for.



If we are hearing the track and field starter’s pistol, the event is a sprint. It feels like a blip, a short lived window of opportunity to get a flurry of stuff done before things quiet again for a time. If today is not the day, then look for cues this week about when to hit the start button on a project or idea that you’ve been contemplating. Hints about timing may be on the near horizon.

Knight cards symbolize action.

In the card draw video above, I’m using my current favorite deck, the Alleyman’s Tarot with the permission of Publishing Goblin LLC. The Alleyman’s deck uses disks and rings for this suit, not just pentacles. Artwork on this particular card is by Amrit Brar for the Marigold Tarot. I don’t know if I’ll ever buy another deck, but if I ever do, the Marigold is high on my list of decks to consider.

Of course the meanings and energies are all fairly interchangeable no matter what deck you use or what name you call the suit. I still call them coins instead of pentacles much of the time because I read with the Art Nouveau deck for years before branching out into other decks. But we can talk about decks another time.

Today, let’s call it rings. The knight of rings is about steady, persistent action. It has a plodding but inexorable quality about it. Consistent, unending, persistent small actions can lead to big results. Raindrops can flatten a mountain given enough time.

Don’t give up on yourself even if your enthusiasm for something good and right starts to fade. Keep chipping away and you can move your mountain too.

The knight of wands also suggests action. The earth element knight of pentacles acts, but is OK with a glacial pace over geologic time. The knight of wands is fire element. This energy may be less focused, less enduring and more chaotic but it is, well, energetic. What it lacks in focus it makes up for with high wattage and unbridled enthusiasm.

I get the mental image of an old Wile E Coyote style cartoon bundle of dynamite wired to a big old fashioned alarm clock.

The think you’ve been ticking away at is ready to blow up, in the viral internet sense of the word.

If you want to catch lightning in a bottle, you have to study electricity and stand out in a few metaphoric thunderstorms. If you have been preparing and chipping and ticking away at something, then your storm front may be on its way soon. Ready your bottle and listen for the thunder, so to speak.

I still associate the knight of wands with the TV series “Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell.”

If you’ve worked and prepared and keep your eyes open for opportunity, magic might happen for you, too.

The Hermit is from the major arcana. Moving from court cards to a major arcana card hints that this is a time of growing activity and dynamics.

On the other hand, it IS the hermit card. By it’s nature it speaks of a return to quiet and contemplation. The lantern and guiding light that is so ubiquitous on Hermit cards is here again in the Aka Skyweb art. This energy speaks to inner guidance and self-discovery.

Slow persistant energy explodes to frenetic progress for a short time but then it needs to be reviewed. I keep getting the phrase “after action report.” Is that a law enforcement thing? Or military? Or both? I want to associate it with first responders of some sort. Preparation, followed by fast action, followed by assessment of the action followed by adjustment and improvement and preparation for the next time.

That pattern may be associated with emergency services or military readiness, but it can be a successful pattern for anyone. My attention is drawn back to the knight of rings with the notion that this advice is particularly targeted toward pentacle, coin and ring kinds of concerns. This week, this reading is very much focused on career and work and wealth. As always with this suit, there is a focus on logic, groundedness, and practicality – even when you are in the middle of a big cartoon ka-BOOM of energy and change.

I see black tourmaline as a helpful energy to protect and steady during the high energy times.

I get the scent of amber and sandalwood to also ground and balance but also support meditation and introspection and learning from experience when it is all said and done.

And there the energy steps back, with a spark of hope that you have all enjoyed the reading and find it helpful.

Thank you all for reading and listening.

The reading fits in here, too. It’s a free for all kind of week.

All of the posts on the Sage Words Tarot blog on both wordpress and ko-fi plus the Sage Sips newsletter on Substack are free for everyone the week of April 24, 2023. The Sage Sips podcast is always free on Spotify plus a variety of other platforms. None of this is advertising monetized – even if you see an ad, I don’t see a penny from it.

All of this Tarot content is supported by readers and listeners like you. If you enjoy these weekly pathway readings, please consider becoming a paid subscriber to see all of the other posts including Q&A, one card meditations, behind the scenes, quote of the day and more.

Thanks again. See you at the next sip!

Writing It Down

Sage Sips: Tarot in the time it takes to sip from your coffee

One of my all time favorite media personalities, Adam Savage once said “Remember kids, the difference between screwing around and science is writing it down.”

Part of my plotting with this rebranding and adding the Substack newsletter is to do the free three card path through the week reading on Mondays, then on Wednesdays, take a slightly deeper dive into the single “current energy” card. I’m thinking Fridays would be a good day to explore oracle cards or other divination tools like crystal casts, cold readings, channeling, pendulums, I Ching or whatever other intuition driven impulse comes along. Other posts, like Q&A or other longer reads will be entirely random. I count myself lucky to have things this organized. I enjoy having flexibility. Intuition or spirit or energy or whatever you want to call it – it doesn’t follow a schedule. Spirit guides and muses don’t give a flying rat’s patootie about social media or best marketing practices. I still don’t have ducks, I still don’t have rows, but this might make the squirrel rave playlist a little more fun for me.

And that, folks, is me following the eight of pentacles current energy advice.

All of the RWS Tarot cards have dozens of key words or phrases that have accumulated around them over the years – centuries, actually. Some are enduring and can be traced back to the writing of A.E. Waite and others, some are contemporary, either written into the guidebook for a specific deck or in a general Tarot book that can apply to any deck. The eight of pentacles (sometimes also called coins or disks) has been connected to skill, diligence, hard work, a project in progress, work, productivity, repetition, craftsmanship and more.

In addition to the long list of key words, each card can be read purely intuitively. The card and its keywords are simply a prompt or a springboard for the reader’s own human intuition or psychic skill. That opens up the reading to an infinity of meanings.

We can talk about intuitive vs key word Tarot readings later. For now lets focus on the eight of pentacles, since it seems to be resonating with one of the well-known meanings – diligence.

Or in this case it came to mind as the contemporary phrase “due diligence” which also brings to mind professionalism and discipline. Due diligence makes me think of doing what needs done to keep things right. It’s all about attention to detail, crossing of those Ts, finding out what needs to be known. It’s nose to the grindstone time. It is not a good time to phone it in and definitely not time for a f**k around and find out approach.

Do the science. Do the diligence. Write stuff down, metaphorically speaking at least.

Thanks for reading.

See you at the next sip!

*Waite Smith Tarot card image from the public domain


Tarot reading for the week ahead

Before it was a movie, it was a word.

Hello and welcome to a whole bunch of stuff. I’m glad you are here. This is the first week of a new and hopefully stable web presence for Sage Words Tarot. Most Mondays you can find these three card Tarot readings for the week ahead in lots of places. So pour yourself a cup of whatever you like to sip this time of day and have a seat at the Tarot Table. The readings are the same no matter whether you came to the table by way of the Sage Words Tarot blog on wordpress and ko-fi, Sage Sips podcast, or Sage Sips on Substack. No matter how you got here, I’m happy you ARE here, so let’s take a look at these cards.

My hunch is to do this in the same format as I would for an email private reading. You KNOW I’m going to tell you that distance Tarot is my specialty and private readings are available to order 24 / 7 no appointment needed. Email Tarot has loads of advantages for both of us, and there is a web page and blog post about that coming soon, too.

That being said, this is my three card pathway layout. I based it on the old ubiquitous past, present, future layout but it doesn’t work with exact time or with predictions. This about the collective energy environment, sort of a psychic weather report that helps you to figure out your best way forward through whatever life throws at you. Like I’ve said for years now: Tarot doesn’t tell you what is going to happen in life. Tarot helps you figure out what to do when life happens.

The layout is read from right to left, in the opposite direction of reading English. I do it that way for a couple of reasons. First, that’s just how I learned to do it a long, long time ago. It’s comfortable and it works. I think the part where we read cards in the opposite direction from reading words is important. Language and grammar is a logical process. When we flip the reading direction it disrupts that deeply ingrained logical thought pattern. That disruption helps to get past established mental habits and get to intuition a little bit easier.

The first card, the one on the right, symbolizes the energy that is fading. The middle card is the strongest energy around at the present moment. I’m writing this on a Monday morning – April 17, 2023 to be exact. Chances are, you are reading it at a different time. That’s where the customization comes in, even at a distance, even in a collective reading. In my experience, the inspiration we need is all around us. Whether you see it as psychic, spiritual, energetic or what have you, the message you need will find you one way or another and the moment you need it the most. Whenever you are reading this, the cards reflect your individual moment in time.

The left hand card is the energy that is growing in influence. Again, it is like an energy weather report of the vibe you might be dealing with later on. It is not a prediction of what is about to happen.

Another way to think of the layout is as the path we’ve already walked, the place where we stand now, and the path just ahead.

I tend not to use that metaphor because “path ahead” makes it too easy to fall into the trap of thinking in terms of predictions or some kind of archaic fortune telling. Tarot has evolved beyond that. If you are looking for someone to predict the future, I’m not the Tarot reader for you. I’m here for the personal growth, spiritual enrichment, inspiration and creative problem solving aspects of Tarot. I’m here to be a better person and better adapt to this squirrel rave we call life. Predictions can’t do regardless of whether they come true or not. But that’s another rant for another day.

My readings start with what I call the “general pattern.” That part isn’t as telling in these three card layouts as it is in a five or seven card layout. Here we see two minor arcana cards and one major. That is roughly the proportion of minor to major cards in the deck as a whole, so logically you would expect to see that same ratio in the layout. When that happens, I read it as “as expected” overall energy. No red lights, no sirens, no windfalls, no winning lottery tickets, just the normal, usual, average ups and downs of everyday living. In other words, chances are it is going to be a typical week, whatever is typical for you. The major arcana card is the growing energy position so the overall dynamics of the week will be building as time goes on as opposed to remaining steady or chilling out as we move toward the weekend. Things are on an upswing, which makes sense after the laid back energies of the past few weeks. It makes sense that the pendulum would finally start to swing in the other direction.

The fading energy is the Ten of Cups. Classically, the Ten of Cups is associated with all the happy family things you would expect based on the picture on the card. Cups cards are connected to the water element, emotions and our closest inner circle relationships. This isn’t to say that things are going to get unhappy or that you are going to lose the things that are dearest to you. In this case, it is the opposite. Words like “foundation” and “foundational” come to mind. Support systems, be it genetic family, found family or otherwise are very much there to support you.

I think this is the real cornerstone of this week’s reading.

The Ten of Cups reminds us that we have support. Know your foundation and your matrix. Before it was a movie or hair care line, matrix meant the environment something was in. Matrix is our milieu and the substrate of life. It’s glue. It’s the stuff that holds it all together.

Allow yourself to be supported. You are not alone. You don’t have to do this alone. There is a matrix and a life-glue out there for you. The trick is to find it and then to cherish it.

Current Energies are represented by the Eight of Pentacles. Pentacles are earth energy, career, wealth, and our relationship with the physical world. This is a cue that the conditions are right to be productive. Allow it to be easy. Just do it, as the shoe folks say. Stay busy. It has been said that work is good therapy. Focusing on a task can help you stay mindful and present in the current moment. That is exactly why simple, repetitive things like knitting, crafting, running, washing dishes or peeling potatoes can be meditative, even soothing, especially at times when emotions are running high. Again I hear “stay active” and “busy hands, quiet mind”

By the way, when I say “hear” it means that the intuitive information comes to mind in the form of words, sounds or songs. If I say “see” it means that the intuitive input is visual, coming through as mental images.

Finally we have the growing Hierophant energy. It took me a long time to come to terms with this card because of the religious imagery on older decks like the Marseille and the RWS card in the Youtube card draw video. That kind of imagery makes sense in the context of Tarot’s development in heavily Catholic Medieval Europe but it has little meaning for those of us who are not part of the Christian religious tradition. Depending on individual experiences, the religious aspects of the card’s appearance can be off-putting to say the least. It is thanks to Johanne Denelli’s writing and the Mark Evans artwork in the Witches Tarot deck version of the card that I’ve been able to work with the card at all. The Hierophant is the keeper of traditions. The hierophant tells old legends by firelight, and defines social expectation – even when social expectations evolve and change.

There are two threads of meaning for the card, and both apply in this reading.

First the Hierophant can symbolize tradition.

In this case it is calling us to set our new normal. Now it is our turn to say what is or isn’t traditional and if we choose to follow tradition at all or not. As someone on social media put it, we are the new ancestors.

After times of great change like the pandemic, people need some degree of sameness, some sense of a solid foundation. Whether it is based on old tradition, or the creation of a new one, after times of great change like the pandemic, we naturally gravitate toward things that are solid, and seem unlikely to change anytime soon. When you build a house, the foundation is the place to start. It might be a new building on a new foundation. It might be rebuilding on an old and proven foundation. Here again we are asked to find our matrix. What is our root, our cornerstone and our foundation? What is the glue that holds the whole thing together? What holds all of our parts in place? What is our matrix?

The other thread of meaning in this card has to do with social convention. It is about doing what is expected of us – or not. I relate this very much with that tension between expressing our true selves fully and authentically and the public face we put on in order to thrive, succeed, or at least survive in the society in which we live. Sometimes you have to take off your favorite goth band T-shirt and dress for a job interview. Sometimes you have to stake your claim for who you really are to heck with the cultural norms. Sometimes you can find a way to have both. Sometimes you have to stay closeted for your own safety. Sometimes you have to find new family and culture and walk your own path.

The message from the Hierophant is to know and define which path is best for you right now. Whether you are complying with the old or creating something new, do it knowingly, mindfully and deliberately.

In a private reading, I would finish up with a summary of any purely psychic intuitive impressions that come through. It may be related to the person’s cards or questions or it may not. That part is highly individual and very personal. It’s not really applicable to a general, collective reading like this. I do get the mental image of a lotus, if that means anything to anyone. That morphs into the image of a pine forest, along with the scent of pine. I’m guessing that’s our recommended candle or incense fragrance for the day.

And there the energies step back and here is where I would end things if I were reading for an individual.

For the whole group of you – thank you for reading and listening. Helpful links are in the text, in the right hand column, in the episode description. You know the drill.

Thank you again. Have a great week and I’ll see you at the next sip!