Tarot Combination of the Day (Tues Oct. 21, 2014) – Death and 3 of Pentacles

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Death and 3 of Pentacles, Morgan-Greer Deck

There’s some quote somewhere on Tumblr, or some other social media site that says something like, “The only constant is change.”  Probably tagged with a famous name like Einstein or Rupaul, who probably didn’t even quote the text.  Ah, the travails of modern life.  Nevertheless, the quote is simple, if not cliche, and, like any truth, simple and complex.  The world we live in is a place in constant flux – nothing stays the same.  There’s no better card to exemplify this truth than the Death card in tarot.

The Death card’s astrological association is Scorpio – how fitting, because the sun is about to ingress Scorpio.  What does Scorpio represent?  Only sex, death, taxes, other peoples’ money, transformation.  Pretty much on point with what card 13 represents.

The three of pentacles is traditionally the card of the “specialist.”  It’s the card of the initial fulfillment of a creative venture, the manifestation of a project in the material world.  Traditionally, in the Rider-Waite deck, there are 3 people collaborating on a project, each seemingly valuing each others opinion and working together to create what seems like art.  However, the Morgan-Greer version is a bit more distilled and depicts a solitary man toiling away on his project, in the shadows.

What needs to die in order that you can create?  I guess that’s the question that you need to ask yourself when the sun enters Scorpio….How can you create a space of vulnerability so that you may open to others’ feedback and truly manifest your vision within a supportive collaborative community?  The gift that we walk away with when something within/without us dies is the sense of opening up even more to allow for more of what you want, i.e. Leonard Cohen’s quote (and it IS his quote), “There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.

Never Trust a Six

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The Sixes in Tarot: A Cautionary Tale, Morgan-Greer Tarot Deck

Never Trust A Six, by Carrie Sanders

Sixes in the Tarot Deck are a wily lot. At a glance the Sixes are represented pretty positively in the traditional Rider-Waite deck – the nostalgia and childlike innocence of the Six of Cups, the charity and gift giving of the Six of Coins, the Six of Wands victory lap on horseback, the Six of Swords image of a family rowing away from troubled waters- but they are often much more complex than what meets the eye. Sixes are usually journey/ departure cards and signal a relief from the sexy instability of the Fives. Whatever the situation the reading is about, it is definitely changing. The problem I see is that the Sixes usually indicate that the querent is choosing the cheap and easy way of getting out from under the current conflict. Take note, my fellow tarotizers: sixes are short term fixes!

I think the most easy to interpret is the Six of Coins. The rich man doling out coins while holding a scale overhead is pretty easy to interpret. Sure, it may be helpful to take that offer of cash now, but strings will be attached. There is judgment and superiority in the position of the benefactor. You can be sure the favor is expected to be reciprocated. A Six of Coins makes me wary and asks the question- can you afford this “charity” because this shit sure ain’t free!

Similarly, the Six of Cups is pretty easy to interpret. Emotional nostalgia is alluring- who doesn’t want to return to an easier time of innocence in love. I often see people getting back with some old flames on FB when I see this card. The thing about innocent love is that it is often irresponsible – and returning to a time of “innocence” is usually in avoidance of the reality at hand. If you are bored or unfulfilled a nice little stroll down memory lane with your 8th grade crush can give you a bit of a boost- but the feels of the Six of Cups are not sustainable. Be careful with the Six of Cups and rekindling old flames – it’s all fun and games until someone has to change their status.

The Six of Swords is usually referred to as the “moving away from trouble” card. Again, make sure this is not a rash move and really examine the long term consequences. This card can sometimes make me cringe a bit as the people in the boat usually are depicted as having a child or children with them. Questions to ask are how a move away from any situation will affect the family and anyone you are taking along for the ride.

When I was working as a ghostwriter on a group writing project, the card I separated from the deck and placed on the nightstand to meditate on was the Six of Wands. To me, this image of a triumphant mounted horseman with the laurel wreath represented the desired result of my effort – reward, pride and accomplishment . What I didn’t consider was this card depicts a one person victory parade – and one that alienates through its showboating arrogance. Sure, my work was done according to my schedule and I was pretty satisfied with the end result – but I was closed off to any feedback and marched right out of that unfinished project on my own. The Six of Wands is especially arrogant. The card is represented by Jupiter in Leo, so think of the expansion of all that “Me Me Me” Leo energy in any spread. In a relationship spread, this card can represent a kind of trophy spouse situation- All Eyes On Us! It most likely is a temporary situation designed to instigate some kind of jealous reaction.

Biblically a six represents man and human weakness. That said, I assure you that Sixes are nothing to fear, tarot friends. Just stay savvy to the slippery Sixes – particularly if you get several in a spread. This could mean there is deception, irresponsibility, or arrogance at hand. Trust your sixth sense.


Carrie Sanders is a writer living in Shanghai with a good husband and loving dog.

Tarot Combination of the Day (Weds Oct. 15, 2014) – Queen of Pentacles and King of Swords

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Queen of Pentacles and King of Swords

I’ve been wanting to make the daily combination thing a daily thing.  But I’ve been busy teaching and stuff so…  Booo….but I am trying my best!  This eclipse energy seems to be really moving stuff around for me, and everyone it seems. It’s all a balance, but anticipate shorter postings for a week or so….

Anyway, back to the combinations!

Court cards are always tricky even for seasoned tarot readers, mostly because the cards could be read as people, the roles that people play, the roles you take on in a situation, or an event that takes place.  So, yeah…tricky.

I get that maybe this is a couple?  If so, they would be of widely different mindsets.  One who cultivates abundance, uses common sense, and the King who values ethics and higher thought.  One who values theory, the other practice.

The cards could be asking you to embody these two opposing, seemingly (elementally speaking) separate views for today –  this idea of grounding your ideas, or embodying your ideas in practical, every day ways.  Or maybe holding intentions/higher thoughts while doing everyday things.  “I set the intention to take care of myself more with every sip of this tea,” for example.  Make it almost a daily mantra…and see what happens?  Greater abundance?  Who knows!  Try it!  Make your life a series of tantric/mantric experiments.   Make the abstract concrete.  I dare you.

Tarot Combination of the Day (Oct. 11, 2014) – Ace of Pentacles and The Devil

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Ace of Pentacles and The Devil

You know that scene in the Matrix where Morpheus is taking Neo through a simulation/program of the matrix, and a beautiful buxom Marilyn Monroe-esque blonde passes the both of them?  Neo takes pause, causing Morpheus to pause the whole program and warns him not to get seduced….anyway, yeah, this combo reminds me of that scene.

The first thing I notice about this combination is that both cards are ruled by the element Earth, as the pentagram appears in both cards (inverted with the devil).  When we’re talking about any card ruled by the element Earth, our area of concern involves anything dealing with the body, matter, the pleasures and heaviness of living in this 3D Earthly realm.  and yeah, this includes money.

Aces are all about new energy, the seed of potentiality, opportunities (from without) as signified by a random hand coming out of some clouds.  It’s like the universe has answered whatever intention you put out into the ether, condensed it and it has finally whittled its way down into the earthly realm – a new job, a financial opportunity, better health, etc.

With the Ace of pentacles, we are, of course, immediately drawn to the star formation in the middle of the coin, which is a pentagram.  The idea of the pentagram is that it represents the human body, but interestingly, the formation of the star is celestial, so the idea is “As above, so below.” or to quote Crowley, “Every man and woman is a star.”

But then, we have, uh-oh, THE DEVIL.  and well, the pentagram is inverted hahaha.  So we have this opportunity, this perfect sense of manifestation eventually turned on its head.  Balance between the earthly and spiritual realms has been inverted.  Perhaps we have become overly materialistic, and have forgotten about what real abundance means.  Maybe we’re unable to cultivate/water what we’ve been given because we’ve developed fear around the idea of abundance.

I suppose the cards are sort of issuing a warning –  don’t become a slave to the senses.  Yes, opportunity abounds, but it can easily be derailed by unconscious patterning that keep one stuck.  Be vigilant, and work toward the highest good of all when dealing with the idea of manifesting one’s desires.  I might also suggest that the Devil is ruled by Capricorn, and Pluto is currently in Capricorn, breaking down economic/political systems worldwide.  If a new job opportunity rolls your way, make sure it’s not a dead end position in which you find yourself bored and just another cog in the machine.  At best, use that opportunity to work with the ideas that you love, which would be in effect taking your power back.

Tarot Combination of the Day (Thursday Oct. 9, 2014) – The Lovers and Ace of Swords

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The Lovers and Ace of Swords


Your love
Should never be offered to the mouth of a
Only to someone
Who has the valor and daring
To cut pieces of their soul off with a knife
Then weave them into a blanket
To protect you.


My first thought upon pulling these cards was this poem by Sufi mystic Hafez.

This combination could have a number of meanings – the most obvious would be an intense love affair and/or cutting through B.S. and making a decision as discussed in earlier meanings of The Lovers. 

But, for me, I guess this poem/tarot combination is about deciding that one should (at least for the day!) cut out what isn’t necessary to your soul’s growth and only bare your soul to those ideas and people that resonate with you.  The idea of discernment comes to mind.  And hey, this poem not-so-subtly alludes to some pretty intense, all-or-nothing kind of love, esoteric meaning aside.  and why would you deserve anything less?

If we’re working with timing, perhaps whatever decisions you mull over at this time will play out during the winter months, as the ace of swords is ruled by the ingress of winter.

I’m curious about the cloud formations on both cards….Any input on that would be appreciated!