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!