Well, here we are:
This new moon passage through the 10 of Wands holds up a mirror to our now. In this mirror, I see health care workers, grocery store clerks, election protection advocates, racial justice organizers, teachers, and parents carrying more than they really can, or should, have to.
What about you? How are you feeling about all you are carrying as the long year finally moves into its turning?
When asked how I am, I’ll start out with: “My life didn’t really change that much. I’m doing the same work. I have the same schedule even if everything now happens on my computer.” But then I remember my mother’s death in May from COVID19. Recall the stressed, sad, exhausted voices of the nursing staff at mom’s facility. And I feel the weight of this year, too. I admit I am weary as we near the finish line.
The new moon (exact at 11:16am ET on Monday, the 14th) affirms these feelings and the reality out of which they grow. This lunar passage allows us to lean in to this difficult now like that figure carrying all those damn wands.
We lean into them because we can’t just put this year’s burdens down. If you’ve been a parent with kids learning at home this year, you couldn’t say, “Can’t help you. Too many of my own things to do.” If your eyes opened wider to the deadly, on-going reality of white supremacy in our systems this year, you can’t just forget the things you learned. We didn’t choose these burdens, but real responsibilities keep us from walking away.
But because the path we are on this moonth is the path of Temperance, we are offered the possibility of changing them into a new form. Then re-shaped these burdens may be better held and perhaps the weight distributed and shared with others.
From The Numinous Tarot
On the Temperance path, we combine things that appear to be opposites (light and dark, life and death, exhaustion and energy, intuition and intellect) into something that integrates rather than rejects the opposing forces from which it springs. Temperance brings the opposites together in a new Whole. This card is sometimes renamed Alchemy to connect it to the pursuit of transforming base metals like lead into more precious ones of silver and gold. Medieval alchemists engaged in actual experiments that gave rise to chemistry, but their greater work may have had a spiritual focus with the goal of transforming their souls.
How can we do this great work? The 3rd of our moonthly cards offers us a role model. The Queen of Pentacles is a master crafter of the element of earth. Another name for her might be Gardener.
From The Next World Tarot (Out of Print, but I found a copy at a local store!)
Gardeners are composters. They see waste and dead plants and think, “Goody, I can use this to grow my next garden.” Crap becomes their gold. The “burden” of cleaning up the garden in late fall brings forth a vision of what next year’s vision will become.
Vision is the thread that runs through these cards. Look back at our burdensome 10 of Wands and see out the detail in the right-hand corner. It’s a beautiful house, the edge of a village, the place the figure seeks. The figure is compelled by this destination to keep moving. What compels you to keep moving through this year even when you’d rather go back to bed and pull up the covers?
In the Numinous Tarot, the alchemists work with closed eyes as if dreaming. What they are creating what has never existed before so they rely on their inner, imaginal eyes to show them what can emerge from the separate—perhaps broken—parts. They hear people say their vision is impossible but know that is true of everything that is. The dream is the seed of the real. What is your highest / deepest dream planted in the dirt and dark of this year?
The gardeners remind us that vision is built from the small details into the big picture. They look at the image of the garden to come and lay out the steps for how to get there. They work the compost into the soil, knowing the past passing is needed to nurture the new. They plant the seed when the conditions are right. They protect the new shoots as needed. They keep watering and waiting for the full fruition. While they are patient, they are also constant in their work. What so inspires you that you are willing to wait for its emergence?
Along with the questions above, this reading of the moonth is offered to support steady shapeshifting progress toward your vision:
VISION: What stronger, better, more powerful thing can emerge out of the dirt and dark of this year?
RESHAPING: What can be reshaped in my life to release new energy for moving toward this vision?
NEXT STEP: What one step can I take slowly and steadily toward the vision during this moonth?
I do offer this as an e-reading in my collaborative initiative format for $23. Sign up with Pay Pal or email me about sending a check. When I receive notification, I’ll be in touch to let you know about when to expect to receive your reading by email. I generally have openings to do these readings on Mondays and Saturdays.
I’ve now reached the “Word from our Sponsors” place in this missive, and I’ll start with a PSA.
Please stay safe during the holidays, which may well mean changing how you gather. Thanksgiving gatherings beyond households are contributing to the current tidal wave of cases. Perhaps Temperance or other cards you decide to pull can guide you to find a re-shaped form for your festivities that really serves your soul. (I just tried it. Working with the Gaian Tarot, I pulled the Four of Air that holds four eggs in a nest. It says to me stay safe and gets lots of rest as you spend time in my own nest. It is too early to venture out.)
Now to mention opportunities for reshaping your burdens and tending your soul. Tomorrow in Descent and Return of the Light, we begin our final days of flowing toward the Solstice. This e-retreat is structured so people can join in at any time. Daily emails this week will provide prompts to support, release, renewal, and rest. Then we soak up the Solstice power and select a Solstice Seed of the New to nurture through the year (yes, we will be gardeners!) In January, we start Tending the Return Light. Our first week theme is What Can Be Born from Our Broken Parts so very much a follow up to this moonth’s invitations.