View Full Version : ADEPT LEVEL; 21 Ways . . . Step 15
It is time to engage in the 15th step of Mary Greer's book, "21 Ways To Read A Tarot Card" --- the ADEPT level. As we do this I want to acknowledge that there are many who have recently started the early steps of the Apprentice Level, some of whom will join us at this level in a few months. I do hope that we can each find time to look in upon their efforts and offer encouragement and answer queries.
The 15th Step is an important one in that it engages the cards and ourselves in several aspects of dialog or communication in a very direct manner. We will be engaging in talking and interacting with our cards, seeing them as people within their own worlds and as people within our world. From these steps in working with "projection" upon others and in becoming aware of a two-way and/or multi-level conversation that can be as focused, diverse or widespread as our minds and imagination permit, we will find that the cards can open up a deeper and richer view through our subconscious into a greater realm of possibilities and choices.
I do look forward to this step. I have so many questions for my Fey Tarot HERMIT as he wanders up and down the many stairways within his tower, passing closed doors, finding strange creatures and objects that appear to have no apparent meaning or business being there with him. Some of my questions will be directly about myself: Why did I choose this card to focus on? What does his situation mean in my life? Does he represent others in my life, each with their own similar problems? Will finding answers for me, help others find answers for them?---or vice-versa?
I think we'll all find great excitement and illumination through this step. I look forward to your posts as well as my own. Dave
Edited to correct a misspelling.
Victorian Romantic 4 of Wands
To the drum on which the girl in the pink rests her cymbals on:
Q: what do you want me to know?
Drum: I keep the beat, much like your heart, and your breath. In, and out, in rhythm, carefully beating, effortlessly.
Q: do you like your job?
Drum: When I get hit by the lady in pink, I only make one single noise, and it is the same sound over and over again. I am dependable, and you can trust on that. I am what I am, and try to be nothing but that, what is there not to like about that. Lighten up, Iím a drum that talks!
Q: right. Do you like how the lady weighs on you? Places her foot on your stand?
Drums: Iím use to it.
Dialogue stopped at this point as I realize that this drum is becoming symbolic about how I feel about my given responsibilities. How I feel about repetitive action and motion, especially in regards to my work. Feeling ordinary and at times unsure of my role, my talents. The drum does give direction and a steady beat. At times taken for granted, but its absence can certainly be felt. Especially on a skeleton band, such as found in this 4 of wands. It (the drum) felt to me to be very confident in its role, and that he played a role, as simple as it may be.
The woman leaning on the drum is how the important others, I feel, lean on me to a certain extend, and vice versa. A symbiotic relationshipÖa girl and her drum. This is as far as I wanted to get with the dialogue and the only entity in the card that I was really drawn to.
Q: I know what you mean to me, what you are saying, and I thank you for taking the time, no pun intended, to speak to me.
Victorian Romantic 4 of Wands and King of Swords(rx)
The card opposing my 4 of wands is a reversed King of Swords.
King of Swords(rx)- shut down that racket!
4 of wands- we know you are king, but the people want us, even need us.
King of Swords(rx)-but, you have nothing to offer, except meaningless noise!
4 of wands- no need to yell, sir, we are simply doing what we do best*smiles*
King of Swords(rx)-and that would be annoying the hell out of everyone?
4 of wands- that is a tad rude, your highness*snicker*, considering you have not seen how we please the crowd. They appreciate us, why canít you?
King of Swords(rx)-I can see clearly that there is nothing of worth in you. You are nothing but a 2 bit, cheap, lousy, want-to-be band!
4 of wands-we think you need to re-adjust yourself, your majesty, and loosen up! Why sit alone, among all those ruins? Come over here and join us, be happy!
King of Swords(rx)- Happy? What do you know about happy? Are you not poor? Blah!
4 of wands- yup, it is true, and you are right, we are poor, we do not have much. But what we have, we give with all our hearts. Now how about dropping the attitude problem, there is plenty of room for one more!
King of Swords(rx)- you donít understand, no one does.
4 of wands- oh yes we do! We see it all the time in our crowds. People are so stressed out, rigid grumps, well, much like you, uuum, your kinglynessÖand we just play loud and in tune. Before you know it, everyone becomes a part of the act. Everyone is smiling, forgetting about what was, if for a moment. Come on, give us a chance.
King of Swords(rx)- I donít know, I have a splitting headache, and Iím comfortable right here where I am.
4 of wands- no problem, weíll just play louder, so you can hear us better.
King of Swords(rx)-joy.
Putting these two cards side by side, I am getting a feeling that I rain a lot on my own parade, lol. Itís true, I judge too harshly my own worth, and those of others that irritate the hell out of me. Recently, I was confronted with such a situation where I had to examine my previous judgement calls on my neighbors at work who, frankly, I thought very little of. But the weight of thinking so negatively about them, made me miserable. There are just some things in life that I do not have control over, except, how I feel about things. I choose not to think badly of them anymore. I accepted what the situation was, and decided that I am not privy to other peopleís life stories. What makes a person who they are, what they are, and how they act. Many times, that is something that I will never know. So I try to be patient, compassionate, and just be at peace with my own shadows.
Victorian Romantic Page of Swords, Page of Pentacles, 6 of Cups
The two aspects of myself-Page of Swords and Page of Pents
The situation-6 of cups
The pages are clearly boys. Page of Swords walks around outside the grounds of a castle, looking upward as if listening for something.
The Page of Pents sits quietly in a chair, in a lushly decorated room with a clock atop a closed doorway.
The 6 of Cups are two girls, one holding on to the other. One girl looks down from a balcony while the other holding onto her is looking up. There is snow all around the town below.
PoS-You need to come here and hear this.
PoP-I listen better with my heart, I donít need ears for the important stuff.
PoS-But we must do something!
PoP-Actually, I think it be best to do nothing, except listen.
PoS-But thatís what Iím doing, as Iím walking.
PoP-Have it your way, but I stay right here. Besides Iím worried about those girls(6 of cups), they shouldnít be out on a slippery balcony all alone.
PoS-Well, can you blame them, itís a great view they have, and all that beautiful white snow.
PoP-The view, thatís all you can talk about?
PoS-I donít know why you are upset, can you not appreciate nature?
PoP-I appreciate peace whether it be outside or inside. They donít have anyone, you know, not a soul in the world.
PoS-They have each other, and the view,lol! What else do you wish for them?
PoP-a safe and warm place to call home. Have you forgotten all that we have been blessed with PoS?
PoS-No I have not, but I need not think of it the way you do. I live it, and feel it when I walk out here, and so do they.
PoP-I suppose we have two different perspectives going here, indoor and outdoor, not one being better than the other.
PoS-Just like they doÖup and down. Different views of the same place. And you just about need 4 eyes to take it all in.
We donít know the whole story PoP, or how their story will develop. We need not know everything. While you sit in that room trying to figure it all out, and me amist these trees. Some things will remain a mystery, just like these two girls and their story.
Iím not totally sure what the situation is that the 6 of cups is trying to telling me. I did not choose these cards face up. I separated them into piles and then shuffled and drew. I wanted it to be more meaningful since I have some difficulties in my own personal views of some of the courts. I did not want to pick the Queen of Cups or any other Queen. I wanted the cards to direct me instead.
Whether I was right or wrong, this is how I did this exercise.
I found it interesting how all the cards were of young people, just starting out, not fully formed adults, with a past to answer to or judge. Perhaps this is how I need to be, like a child, more open and in wonder(6 of cups). Finding a balance between air(yang/masculine), and the passive, receptive earth(pents). Being active without burning out, yet pensive/meditative enough to avoid becoming rigid.
I was a bit apprehensive as to where this step would take me, and decided to do it in real time this evening. When I started, I felt embarrassed, like a mother whose kid just had a tantrum in the supermarket with everyone staring, wondering what kind of monster I've raised. But by the end, I felt comfortable, and good about where this was taking me.
I did a version of this step last October, but what I did then simply does not ring true anymore. I'm glad I did this step over, because it mirrored what I am currently struggling with and feeling.
Squeak, I loved your dialogs! I almost peed in my pants laughing at the KoS 4 of Wands conversation. That was hillarious, and yet so powerful. I see a lot of depth in all of your dialogs. The PoS/PoP dialog with the inside and outside and the girls on the slippery balcony to me that really said alot about how you are changing your point of view and that it is one you are consciously struggling with but achieving. A paradigm shift.
Thank you for sharing! I hope to post my Step 15 soon. It is done, I just need to find the time to type it up and post it.
The PoS/PoP dialog with the inside and outside and the girls on the slippery balcony to me that really said alot about how you are changing your point of view and that it is one you are consciously struggling with but achieving. A paradigm shift.
Thank you for this Jewel, you summed it up so neatly for me:), and yes, what you said feels true!
Thank you for this Jewel, you summed it up so neatly for me:), and yes, what you said feels true!
Feels good doesn't it? even if it is uncomfortable at times, or feels unnatural, there is a sense of satisfaction in being able to make the change and knowing that it get its easier each time.
I hope to find time to post my work next week. :)
I've resisted this step for reasons I'm not aware of. I had thought of writing this out in a word processor and then copying it here, but that wouldn't be spontaneous or feel real. So, I've delayed on doing this. Now, I am going to have a heart-to-heart with the Fey Hermit.
Hey, Hermit, Aren't you feeling a bit funny about wandering around these mixed up stairways?
Hermit: Well, there seems to be a lot to explore here.
Why keep walking? You don't stop and read the book, or listen to the creatures. You just look at doors and stairs but never make a decision or try a door or anything. What are you avoiding?
Hermit: I'm looking for something.
You aren't looking, you are procrastinating! You are avoiding opening a door, reading the book, stopping and listening to see if there are sounds or whispers in your ear, or something. I find it hard to relate to someone who won't do something, anything.
Hermit: You've got expectations. You know what you say about people who have expectations of other people, don't you? (Smugness on his face)
Oh, yes, smarty. Expectations are doomed to disappointments. But, that doesn't change a damn thing. You are the one who will be disappointed. What is it that you expect? A door to open by itself? An idea? Just tell me what!
Hermit: Well, I'm trying to determine the bounds of this puzzle place. It has to end somewhere up there and down there. I mean, how tall can this tower be?
Well, confusion and procrastination have no bounds. You'll rationalize it till the cows don't come home. Sometimes you just have to do something.
Hermit: Like you now deciding to write on this step?
**** I've been procrastinating over several things. One is finishing up the very last chapter of my book. The whole adventure might be over soon. But, I have another book in mind----not so bad. And, I've hesitated over this posting, still don't know why. And, I've just built a blog site after hesitating for several months. http://ninthhouse.wordpress.com/ is how to reach it, although I'm populating it now and not really advertising it or promoting it yet for another week or so. Everything was on hold, everything is now moving forward. Go figure. I'll have to do 15:3 next. Dave
L is the Lady and C is the Queen of Cups.
L: I see your holding up that cup of yours again. I am thirsty as well
C: Actually, I was giving thanks for everything that is going well. It helps me focus on the good things in my life.
L: Well I am feeling a bit heavy right now. I have a lot on my mind, what with the harvest and the coming birth
C: Yes, I see you are pregnant. But what a lovely time to give birth, the harvest will be inn, food a plenty. Your family will be able to be around you.
L: Youíre right. It is a time to give thanks for all that I have. How about you, you are in the light of the moon. Is there something going on?
C: Well, I am a trying to connect with my inner self, and see where it leads me. I have been on this journey a while. So though it seems I have everything, there are issues I have to deal with.
L: What kind of issues.
C: Like you, I too have family, not always ones preferred choice to be with. Actually, I am in the process of defining myself through myself. I leave behind hurt and troubles. I raise my cup to help me see what must be seen.
L: I am lucky; I am at the start of something new and wonderful. I have the world at my feet and I am in connection with nature. I have learned to love and trust those most dear to me.
C: I know what you mean. I too love those who are near. But its coming to terms with those that should love you but have disappointed that brings the problems. However, I am in a process of healing. I have laid the hope of reconciliation dead. It frees me, and now I can heal.
L: This sounds like a good idea. You will become more at one with yourself. Perhaps you will leave the moon and come out into the country with me one day.
C: Yes, I would like that very much. Not long now.
The Lady offers hope and goodness, while the Queen sees and feels her problems. Through the conservation; The Lady gives the Queen hope. I find the Queen of Cups very close and empowering. She sees all and cares. She becomes my mother and friend. Though I think, I have to do more to make the Queen satisfied. I am at the start of this process, so the Lady gives hope, but maybe it will take me several months of hard work to get where I want to be. I then may, like the Lady, reap the rewards of the harvest.
Doing the conversation the cards become more alive, like people I really see, hear and feel.
DECK: Fantastic Menagerie
CARD: The Moon
ACTIVITY: 15:2 Negotiations between me and the figure on the card
For years I have thought of The Moon card as the card of illusion and delusion. I have always loved the card and identified with it. What does that say about me?
The Lady Owl is dressed romantically at night standing on an open yet enclosed patio with the full moon starring at the back of her head. The owl lady represents that part of me that lives a significant portion of my life in my own little world with the outside world look in at me and seeing my ways exactly for what they are. Like the owl lady I do not see that they really see what is going on and I ignore them and delude myself into believing that they really have no clue. While I romanticize and fantasize those on the outside of my world are neglected and get hurt.
I want to thank the Lady Owl for this insight, and I will quit treating the real world as an interruption and a bother. It is time for me to join the here and now, and let those closest to me in more.
I did this exercise differently than everyone else that has posted. I really did not have a dialog with this card, it just flat out gave me a picture of where I was at the time. Since that time I have been taking my own advice very seriously and it has made a very positive difference in my life. What I negotiated with this card was a reality check and a commitment from myself to make changes. I have followed through on that to my own benefit, and in the process to making not only my life better but that of those around me, my husband in particular. I agreed with what the card showed me and have acted accordingly ever since. The result of this has brought me and my husband closer together making a good marriage even better.
My chosen card is the Fey HERMIT card which depicts a formally dressed male Fey, wearing a top hat, making his way through a maze of up and down, crossing, twisting stairways inside a tower with lots of doorways and small creatures and objects laying on the floors/stairs.
The second card drawn from a shuffled deck is the Five of Wands. The Fey deck depicts five Fey playing and swinging on a tree from a rope hung over a branch.
D signifies me, Dave. H signifies the Hermit. 5W signifies the Five of Wands.
D: Hermit, what is it you want from your situation?
5W: (Interupting) He wants out. Someone to play with.
H: Nooo, I think I want to understand why someone would place these crazy stairways in this tower.
D: And you think the answer will make your day!
H: If it doesn't I'll have to make a choice about these doorways.
5W: Many times we find that "doing" is better than "thinking."
D: And what would you guys (5W) do if wandering those stairs?
5W: We'd open a bunch of doors to see what's out there.
H: One door would do, wouldn't it?
5W: You'd only see one side of the external situation, why not see it all?
D: Perhaps the problem isn't outside? Where do you see the problem, Hermit?
H: No problem, only a puzzle. If it was a problem then I'd resolve it. This is a puzzle, so there is time to consider it.
5W: Puzzles are like games, aren't they?
D: Yes. It seems that our circumstances may be shaped by how we view those circumstances.
5W: That's what we do, we compete, we out-do each other. If there is no reason to fight then we strive as hard as we can, and then we see what happens.
H: So, you guys take a physical path wherein I take a mental path. What's wrong with that?
D: Perhaps nothing, Hermit, except that you aren't looking at the clues. You're just stepping up, stepping down, peeping and peeking. What do you see?
H: Some doors are warmer than others.
5W: Go for it!
H: There is no need. Warmth only means that the door is on the sunny side of the tower. It doesn't tell me anything else.
5W: Well, we're in the Sun, we're doing something, we're getting a feeling of who's good at somethings, not so good at others. We're getting to know about ourselves.
D: They have a point, Hermit. (Dave hears a door slam shut).
These two cards plainly show that something happens when you take action while not much happens when you sit and think and then think some more. It's harder to make and show progress when only thought-without-action is the name of the game. Then again, just doing something doesn't guarantee a good result for the effort made. Thoughts need to lead to action, action can lead to the need to think about what's been accomplished. Dave
The past two weeks have been involved with the hospitalization of my wife's mother, age 96, her return from emergency and critical care to the nursing home, her brief "recovery" and then her passing several days ago. As so often happens in life, we observe disassociated events and comments which seem to string themselves together and which then gives us pause to think. Some of that is behind the dialog between these two cards in terms of which cards and what they signify.
My current chosen card is the Fey Tarot HERMIT, a tall formally-dressed Fey who is stalking up and down the twisted stairways within a tower, doors and arches everywhere and critters and objects scattered about which may be clues but which he pays no attention to.
The card from my past work in these threads that I have chosen is the Fey WORLD card. A giant snail glides through the stars carrying a small castle and enclosed world on its back. Trees, green grass, a village, birds and a large pink dragon are there.
Hermit: Hey Snail are you lost out there in nowhere's land?
World: No more than you in your confined puzzle tower? Do you know where you're going? You should consider making a choice.
Hermit: Well, there are lots of choices but I don't know what they might lead to or how they are different. What about you? Do you have a destination?
World: No, I'm just taking my time, same as I always do. I'll stop when I see someplace interesting. Is there anything that triggers your curiosity there?
Hermit: I've noticed the small creatures lying about, the book, and the ladder. Right now, I'm evaluating how many stairways and doors there are. What about your passengers, do they have anything to say about where you are going?
World: No, they signed on without questions about where I was going. They have a world to enjoy and I'm free to find my world(s).
Hermit: I have to get back into a world where I have some relevance, there really isn't much here when you consider it all. I have no opportunity to share, and nobody to interact with.
World: Well, I feel like a taxi driver who doesn't know quite what to do next. But I can see many choices and what each promises.
Hermit: I can see choices also but not what each may lead to.
World: Opening a door doesn't mean you have to go through it. Shut it and choose another.
Hermit: That may be allowed. There aren't others to tell me "NO", so I think I'll think about that.
World: Thinking about thinking? You really do need a life.
Hermit: OK, but when I open that door, Dave will need another card to follow.
My mother-in-law had a long life and made many choices, although they were not apparent to us. To her family, it seemed that her world had closed in about her over the past decade or so and that she had, like this Hermit card, few options that appealed to her. Her circle of contacts became smaller and her personality changed as she aged and dealt with breathing, balance and strength issues.
Due to the increasing limitations she faced we placed her in another world, a nursing home nearby where they could treat her breathing difficulties and help her be mobile. She hated her new environment at first, but then she surprised us all by interacting with the diversity of ethnic, racial and intrusive circumstances there. This private, not overly social old lady made many new friends among the staff. She didn't like to go to the dining room or to the living room areas to participate in meals or daily events --- I don't want to be with all those old people. She was the second oldest person there.
So, between these two cards, I see a relationship to her past many days: Moving from a closed world of possibilities seldom explored to a very unusual world of diversity in which she opened up and balanced her life experience.
So, in my next post, I'll choose another card and move into a different world context to explore. There are other parallel stories in my life about my book and family life that these cards seem to mirror as well. Thanks to the list for bearing up with my less-frequent postings. In summary, I feel that this dialog approach within tarot has to be something really important for us to add into our many tarot experiences. Dave
I hope to post the rest of my step over the next few days ... all done, just trying to find time to post :D