Another Year Here: Happy Beltane!

Happy Beltane! Did you know, I’ve been writing the Everyday Tarot here for TWO YEARS now? Wow. I’m still fresh out of perfect, but full of good enough. I’ve written over a thousand posts and have had over 4000 comments! Damn.

Beltane is about spring and fertility. I’m pretty happy with what I’ve created here, and look forward to the blossoms incubating now. Not only do I have a billion and two ideas, but I actually believe I’m going to manage to pull some of ’em off!

Remembering this as the anniversary of my first column here (and my Grandmother’s birthday–Happy Birthday from this side of the veil, Grandma!)…well, I just am very, very grateful.

Wishing you a fruitful spring and THANK YOU guys for sharing your life with me.

Much love.

Do you celebrate Beltane? What do you do?

P.S. Any linguistically gifted folks who would like to help me proofread the manuscript for the hard copy of my Everyday Tarot Archive books, please let me know. I am also still offering session credits for captioning volunteers until they are all completed. Thanks!

Beltane Reflections–Year of Everyday Tarot

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I’m a Beltane Virgin. This year, I decided to observe Beltane for the first time. For me, this means some flowers, some candles, some incense, some anointing with magical oils, some praying, and some reflection. And a generous dinner, my own version of “cakes and wine.”

Outside, I see my Sacred Garden plantings from a few days ago have just started sprouting up. I’m not sure if it’s the Morning Glories or Nightflower, or maybe it’s the Passion Flower, although probably not yet. Passion takes a little more time, methinks. The hearty rains this morning had de-petaled several of my miniature roses, which in turn became an offering both for the Tarot Corner makeshift alter and the potted plants on my patio.

In my Tarot Corner,  two prayer candles have been burning all day: one with the Virgin Mary (I think) standing for the Moon Goddess, the Green one standing in for the Sun God. Not Sun red, but green for fertility and growth. I’ve anointed them with magical oils and added some gemstone chips.

I chose a Citrine crystal to use as centerpiece, since it’s golden like the sun and besides—it may not be a Maypole, but it’s still pretty phallic, don’t you think? I pulled a card from my Tiny Tarot for the occasion, asking for Beltane Blessings and got the Magician. Pretty damn apt for a Witch holiday, don’t you think?

Maybe another time, I’ll celebrate witch holidays with others. I’m just too green myself, way too much of a neophyte. I don’t know all the “proper” things to be doing, what’s expected or traditional. But for right now, right here, this felt right. And creating a humble observance with the right intention, of of honoring spirit and the impending season of growth, felt appropriate for where I am. I’m at peace.

In the back, you can see the Fool still out for my Living the Archetypes exercise, looking on as I feel my way through through this leg of my own journey. He reminds me, it’s been a year today, since I wrote my first Everyday Tarot column, on being good enough. There have been so many junctures since starting here that I’ve wondered, “Am I good enough? Can I serve well enough?”

My answer has to be the same, always: I do the best I know how. By definition, that has to be enough. I ask for wisdom and strength, I seek understanding and growth, and to keep going, I keep faith I’ll get what I need to best serve.

Today, I celebrate all I’ve learned in the past year, as foundation for hope for how I may serve in the coming year. That’s the harvest I look forward to reaping.

How was your day/Beltane?

Sacred Garden Update: Recovering

Upon learning of the Lilly massacre, a dear friend sent me bulbs to replace those who died in action, along with a variety of other lovely new plant friends. Oh yeah—the lily colors were selected to MATCH MY HAIR!! How awesome is that?!?!

They came last week. On a difficult day, matter of fact. While I was thinking and evaluating and yeah, hurting a little, too. In the midst of emotional mud, new flowers showed up. Grow something beautiful from your mud.

Lilies and Freesia came first. I was going to put them aside for a few days to figure it all out, much like my concerns. Box it up, nice, tidy and neat. Get myself a new, large and perfect container to plant all the lilies in—all organized and sorted. Unambiguous.

But my neighbor showed up with even more seeds and “spare” potting soil for me to use. She bought more than she needed, I think to make sure I had plenty. And as soon as she offered, I got an overwhelming urge to get my hands in the dirt, plant those suckers NOW. Planting always grounds me, calms  me and helps clarify feelings. It always helps me feel things are right. Tidy or not, perfect or not, it doesn’t matter. It’s the act that takes me out of my head and connects me to a bigger world.

Well, these flowers aren’t going in the ground. Not here. Nothing I’m attached to in any way, shape or form is going into the ground here, not anymore.

Of course,  most of my friends from years past are still live in the ground. This phlox, for example, is really working it…I did set aside some phlox in a pot, well, just in case. Portable! I’m ready to pick up and change direction as needed.

So I just planted. And I started to feel better. Not completely, not instantaneously, but better. Enough.

I grabbed a frog planter in honor of the Scorpio toad…If I spray painted it black, it would look just like him…now every time I see it, I will think of him and what he may have to say to me. Even though toads were often looked upon with suspicion and dread historically, I know he didn’t have an evil spirit. Black toad or not, he was Zen. I respect his visit.

And do you know, one of those new lilies is already sprouting? He popped out of the dirt almost as soon as I’d planted him. He was more than ready. Much easier than I expected. What else may sprout for me, quicker and easier than I ever imagined?

And the seeds came, too. Morning Glories and Night Flowers, Passion Flowers and Coneflowers. I can hardly wait to plant them all!

For most of my seeds, I do want to get a huge, round pot, so I can pop my trellis in the middle and create a portable, magical gateway, you know? The Morning and Night flowers together are very Yin/Yang Goddess/God Sun/Moon. I love the polarity—and having been reading up on Wicca, of course the dual representation is perfect. I’m also planting them with the Passion flower seeds to bind the energies of day and night with “passion,” i.e. emotional energy.

I haven’t decided what to do with my coneflowers yet, but my daughter-in-law is working on some pots that will be painted with chalkboard paint. Since coneflowers are known to enhance spells, I think a pot I could draw magical symbols on might be a good home for them…sure, pentagrams or astrological symbols may freak out the neighbors, but who cares? I’ve long since stopped bothering about the neighbors. I’ll just see what shows up when I’m ready to plant ’em.

I’ll tell you something: the lily incident really did draw to my attention how much this humble little garden means to me. It’s so long been a source of comfort and quiet, a little sacred space, I had been taking it for granted. You know? Last year, I didn’t even plant anything. Friends from years prior filled my pots and the little plot of dirt I have. It was just…there, effortless, without my thinking about it. I was pleased but didn’t think so much of how important it is to me. Now, I’m thinking about it more and that has made me recognize how very valuable this little bit of sacred space really is to me. Appreciate the beauty and magic in the everyday.

One thing I’ve noticed since I’ve starting planting—we keep getting gentle, sporadic rain. It feels blessed.

Are you emotionally attached to your garden?

03/29/12: Source of Wisdom? | High Priestess

high-priestessNot too long ago, I got an urge to pull out an old gift. Divination cards that teach Wiccan beliefs. Rather than go through the cards and associated teachings in an orderly fashion as the book suggests, I’m just pulling cards. ‘Cause that’s my gig, you know. More than being a rebel, I trust the cards!

I drew the “Book of Shadows.” It was in the context of a story about the Book of Shadows quizzing the traveller, but that particular part of the story popped at me, loud.

“You add, ‘I did not know the answers.’ The Crone smiles and replies, ‘If the answers were not within you, you would have never heard the questions.‘” -A Traveller’s Guide to the Well Worn Path

I got goosebumps. I read it three more times, and got three more sets of goosebumps. Pay attention, Dixie. That’s what my goosebumps say.

Today’s Tarot patron priestess of readers everywhere! The High Priestess (Moon) is guardian to all that is unknown. Yin to the Magician’s yang, she doesn’t direct, doesn’t propel, doesn’t make anything happen directly. She receives—as the vessel, she accepts.

Behind her sits the entire watery intuitive realm. The pillars surrounding are representative of pillars called Boaz and Jachin at Solomon’s Temple. She is, indeed, keeper of wisdom. As one of the Tarot Twos, she embodies polarity. Black and white, right and wrong, not knowing and knowing are part of her sloshy terrain. You get to pass through the veil, reaching her wisdom, by being willing to receive it.

Ever since I’ve started down the woo-woo road, the questioning is a constant companion. This is all so…nebulous. I worry—Virgo is like that—that I’m missing something, not doing as much or as well as I might somehow. Not living my potential, not giving what I really can. But you don’t make this foolish journey by painstakingly planning and mapping a route. It’s an inner trek, embarked upon by opening your head and heart up to it.

Spiritual seeking is a way of reaching upward, allowing the wisdom within to attach a response to the question. It’s calling out to the Higher self, the divinity spark within each of us that is connected to infinity. The source connection is activated, and each question comes with an answer, in a perfectly match set.

I don’t have to keep asking, “Am I doing what I should be doing? Am I learning and studying what I should be? Am I on the right path?” The stressing is unnecessary if I maintain faith, knowing having the question itself means the answer is already there. It cannot exist in a vacuum. All I have to do is ask and keep my heart open to receiving.

What does the High Priestess tell you today?

The Well Worn Path
by Raven Grimassi