So happy to be picking up the Tarot Blog Baton from Barbara Moore at http://practicaltarotreadings.com/blog/ and the 6 bloggers before her. Find out more about the Tarot Blog Hop at http://www.facebook.com/TarotBlogHop
Today we are on the cusp of Imbolc, the Celtic festival that marks the start of spring and is dedicated to Brigid, who is venerated as both Goddess and Saint. As Goddess, her realm is fire and she is inspirer of poetry, healing, and smithcraft. As Saint, she and 19 of her nuns tended a sacred flame and she served as abbess of a double monastery of women and men. As an expression of traditions’ creative and fertile mixing, Brigid speaks to me of a shared well feeding our search for the sacred and the potential this well offers for the healing of rifts between groups.
Inspired by Brigid and the hint of lengthening days, I usually am ready to rush over the threshold of winter and into spring.
But there is something different this year.
I have been spending time with the “dark” cards of the Tarot these past few weeks as part of the Journey into the Tarot. The Hanged One, Death, and the Devil have been recent companions and their lessons have been about the necessity, the healing, and even the nurture of the dark, the challenging, the shadow. So before I light my candle I need to make sure that I’ve really soaked in and honored the dark.
My usual way to check in deeply on such matters is to combine Tarot with guidance from nature. I asked the Tarot some questions for this threshold time (see below) and received the message to go outside and honor winter, the Cailleach or Old Woman in the Celtic Tradition.
So I walked in my neighborhood. The wind was sharp though the ground was without the usual January snow. The sun was bright on the dark limbs creating patterns of branches reaching to the sky in beautiful symmetry. Well, for the most part. Because there were also sharp breaks and branches left dangling from the pre-winter October snowstorm that damaged so many trees and left much of Massachusetts and Connecticut without power for days and even weeks. Like our current lack of snow, our all too early storm and its damage are a sign of the chaos caused by climate change that can not be ignored.
When the trees leaf out in spring this damage will be hidden, but I’m called to bring their wounds with me into this time of returning light. I can only embrace the joy of spring when I remember the shadows shown in winter. I’ve been coming to know this balance as a message of The Sun.
This melding of joy and shadow is seen so wonderfully in the Gaian Tarot’s Sun.
Our eyes are drawn, of course, to the brilliant sun, the flowered landscape, and the radiant woman. But this picture also includes her shadow. Her dark outline is, in fact, the foundation on which she stands.
So I will light my candle. And I will honor the dark. I will seek to be a better candle of dark wick and bright light. I will hold this whole.
Winter into Spring Spread
Card 1: What winter / dark work do I need to complete before moving into spring / the light?
Card 2: What is a lesson learned in the dark time that I can take as a gift into the light?
Card 3: What can help me cross the threshold from winter into spring?
Card 4: How can I be a better candle?
Card 5: What are the gifts of the light that may unfold for me in this season?
I’ll post my reading in the comments and you are invited to do so as well.
Continue the Tarot Blog Hop by visiting Inner Whispers at http://innerwhisperscouk.blogspot.com/