When I read the premise for this round of the Tarot Blog Hop, I knew it was right up my street. Our wrangler, Aisling the Bard, asked us to ‘use our Tarot cards to explore and explain the duality of our own natures’. She also asked: ‘How is it that you are, actually, of “two minds”?’
Well, as a double Gemini (rising and ascendant), I most often think of myself as being in at least four minds. Yeah, it gets a bit noisy in here, sometimes 😀
Aisling’s idea: choose a card as your significator, and say why. Then choose a card as the opposite or ‘tanist’: and say why. Finally, choose five cards to look at the energies in your life: ‘of Mind (Air), Will (Fire) Action (Earth), Intuition (Water), and Wisdom (Spirit).’
Double-yes: I use the idea of the elements in my readings and magic often. I use them to look at the different aspects of self, or of what is going on around me, as well as a mnemonic. So, you bet I’m in 😉
Now, Alison Cross of Tarot Thrones has written a bunch of posts about different ways to choose and use your significator. And all of that is great, but it’s not what I’m going to do. Officially, I’m a Queen, whichever way you cut it. Decan-wise, I’d be the Queen of Cups ((ack)), more intuitively I’d be the Queen of Swords.
Instead, I take my zodiacal Major – The Lovers. A card of choices and options – yeah, that feels right.
I always see both sides of the argument, and another possibility or two. I can’t say anyone is wrong or right, because it all depends on where you’re standing, what you had for lunch, and whether there’s sunshine forecast. When I was a kid, I got a fortune-cookie-type thing that said: ‘I used to be indecisive, but now I’m not so sure.’ Hell yeah!
So, what of the Tanist, the cognate opposite? I’m not going to follow my own logic and pick the opposite zodiac sign – Saggitarius. For one thing, nuh-uh, cos they really aren’t all that opposite. Also, why would I, that was number one personality’s idea, and we’ve moved on 😀
Rather, I choose intuitively (maybe now I’m channeling the Queen of Cups): the Hanged Man. Here, there’s a feeling of restriction, of lack of choice, of inability to do anything. However, that lack of choice is something the Hanged Man has chosen.
The Tanist in Action
For instance, I like using tarot spreads. Laying the cards with clear positional meanings determined before the fact. After all, that’s a restriction I place on myself, like choosing to hang in a tree. And the limitation allows me to learn something, to find clarity and insight, as Odin was shown the runes after hanging in Yggdrasil. If I have cards thrown randomly, they could mean a million things. Even with a spread, am I reading it as a general spread, or for love, or for work, or for moving home? For a man, a woman, or a child? For a journalist, or a nurse, or a banker? Each one is possible, with any set of cards.
Corrine Kenner did this in a workshop at a UK Tarot Conference several years back. Drew one set of cards in a Celtic Cross, then had someone ask a question. As a group (each card was held by a different person) we interpreted it for them. Then Corrine had someone else ask a completely different question, and we interpreted the same cards for them, too. The magic is in the interpretation, the juxtaposition of querent, reader, cards and spread positions. Both readings worked!
I digress, well, of course I do. I already warned you, I’m a double Gemini.
Before this gets too ridiculously long, let’s cut to the chase – the elemental energies. I normally see the elemental meanings slightly differently – Water as emotion and relationships, for instance. Still, for today, personality three says let’s go with Aisling’s definitions 😉
So, drawn from the Vivid Journey Tarot (Llewellyn, 2017):
Mind (Air) – The Fool
Haha, yes, always jumping into the new, the unknown. Sometimes it certainly seems foolish, especially when I already have several other projects on the go. Yet, all roads lead to Rome. All passions will meld and merge, adding their flavour to the stew of life. A mind willing for adventure will always find new subjects to explore.
And some new horizons I’ll feel so passionate about that they will become a part of me, so it doesn’t even feel like a sacrifice to follow them to the ends of the earth.
Will (Fire) – Nine of Swords
Of course, all those choices and ideas send my thoughts into a spin, and then how can I sleep? My will is sapped by tiredness, making it even harder to focus.
There’s little I can do about the sleeplessness, I just have to accept it. Some sacrifices are required, in the midst of family, work and hobbies, and at the moment sleep seems to be the biggest casualty.
Action (Earth) – Knight of Pentacles
To get anything done, I need to keep on keeping on. Sometimes, this is really tough. After all, with the Lovers I’m passionate about so many different projects (hence the whirring thoughts of the Nine of Swords). Yet, if I actually want to finish anything, which I most definitely do, then a degree of stick-to-it-ness is called for. Thank goodness for the Knight of Pentacles.
And this is another of those spots where my Tanist comes in to help. I create restrictions and deadlines for myself, to dam my flow and force myself to run a certain course. Or, in more Knight of Pentacles terms, I harness myself to the plough, and stick to the furrow.
Intuition (Water) – Four of Cups
When faced with so many choices, some of which I may not even see, how to decide? Well, trust my intuition, of course! Sometimes, it’s hard to tell Wands-y longing and enthusiasm from true intuition. My wanting it NOW does not make it what my intuition really tells me I need.
Back, then, to the tanist. Time for some downtime, some meditation. Narrowing my focus in that way will help me to listen to the quiet inner whispers that point in the direction of my soul’s yearning.
What wisdom is to be gained from all this?
The advice is to throw myself into new projects by making choices, though sometimes they are restricted. To persevere in the face of tiredness and other challenges. To check in with my intution, through the narrowing of focus inherent in meditation.
Through these actions, a world of potential opens up. This is a good balance to strike between action and inaction, between choice and restriction, between thought and intuition. And this point of balance – between the infinite and the single choice I can make in this instant, the present moment – this is where the magic happens 😀
To see what others have made of this challenge, jump on round the hop by following any of these links…