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Akuts 
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Question about Lenormand card meaning


Could someone please help me in understanding the meaning of one of the Lenormand cards? Everything I have read about card 17 The Stork says that it means moving house, change. I can't see why.

To the best of my knowledge I've never seen a stork, though I did see a stork nest in Germany. I know nothing about storks, so I looked them up on the Internet. There are nineteen species of stork. They range in height from two to five feet. They are devoted parents and their nest sites are often colonies. They lay between three and six eggs, which hatch in five weeks. They are carnivorous, eating snails, frogs, fish, and birds. They cannot vocalise, but make a noise with their bills. There has been a severe decline in their numbers since World War Two. For unknown reasons, storks are considered lucky.

What has any of this got to do with change or moving house?
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Old 12-06-2008 Need help fast? Chat with a live Tarot reader now!     Top   #1
Gavriela 
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I may be wrong, but I believe the myth about storks bringing babies started in middle Europe - the same place the Lenormand was created. Storks bring change, since a baby is certainly a change in the home.

So the Storks bring. To see what they bring and what that will cause, we need to look at the cards around them.

Birds also migrate, so that too, can indicate changes - movement.

For a house move, I'd want to see Storks + House, or Storks + Ship.

Lenormand-speak is a little funky that way.

Context is everything, and this is certainly not the only way these cards can be read, but:

If I saw Anchor + Storks + Fish, I'd read it as a job (Anchor) change (Storks) will bring in more money (Fish).

If I saw Rider + Storks + Child, I'd read it news (Rider) of a pregnancy or impending birth (Storks + Child).

It's a good question! And the Blue Owl shows two storks nesting on a rooftop. In the Dondorf, we see simply a lone stork in a marsh. He doesn't look like he's settling down, more stopping on his travels.

The Storks can also sometimes be read as a kind woman, usually a relative or a close friend, as they're also the Hearts Queen.

If I'm able to dig up any more on why the association of Storks - change, I will let you know.

Last edited by Gavriela; 12-06-2008 at 20:19.
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Grizabella 
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I read somewhere that storks build nests on chimney tops. I guess partly because it's warm there. Of course, that will mean the smoke from the fire will then go into the house instead of outside. So of course, the storks get "evicted" from the chimney tops and are forced to move. At least, that's something I read somewhere years ago.



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silverr 
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I read the Stork not just as change, but as something being new as part of the change. So my base keyword for Storks is "new."

Storks + House = New home (moving, or new arrangements in the house)
Storks + Child = New baby (or a new project to "baby", that sort of thing)
Storks + Lily = New routine, new diet, new schedule, etc.

And, because this is Lenormand, I should point out a base keyword is only a starting point, and the actual interpretation in some readings might not have anything at all to do with anything being "new." That's part of the fun of reading Lenormand.



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Akuts 
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Thank you for your explanations. Grizabella's makes the most sense to me. I hadn't thought about a stork's nest blocking the chimney of a house as the one and only stork nest I've ever seen wasn't built on top of a house. But certainly, having to build a new nest would mean change, for the stork, anyway.

Everything I read about storks on the Internet stressed heavily what caring parents they are. One reference said that some storks shield their chicks from the sun by standing over them with outstretched wings. Such behaviour does seem to link the bird to the associated card, the Queen of Hearts.

I found one interesting site where the stork is referred to in The Aberdeen Bestiary, written in England around 1200. http://www.abdn.ac.uk/bestiary/translat/48v.hti While it didn't explain the connection with change or being new, it did bring up some intriguing thoughts of the time.

Quote:
It is said also that the stork is the enemy of snakes. Snakes are evil thoughts or evil brothers; the stork strikes snakes with its bill, as the righteous check evil thoughts or reprimand their wicked brothers with penetrating rebukes.
I'm sorry if I'm merely going over what everyone else already knows. The Lenormand is still very new to me.
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Not at all - Lenormand is a language. And the more you learn about how that language works, the more proficient you'll become in it. Those 36 symbols that were chosen as the Lenormand alphabet have all kinds of associations.

I've never been a fan of memorising card combinations by rote, though I have lists and lists of them I've made myself - in an actual reading situation, you're not going to be looking up combos - and the ones you've got might not apply to that reading anyway. But ithe more you know about what the 'words' mean in all their nuance, the more you can make coherent sentences out of them in the context of your readings.

Keep asking questions - and keep digging up information! That's the first step to understanding, and that is the first step to becoming a good reader

Last edited by Gavriela; 13-06-2008 at 18:09.
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silverr 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Akuts
I'm sorry if I'm merely going over what everyone else already knows. The Lenormand is still very new to me.
I don't think anyone "already knows" all there is to discover. Some may have a longer history with the cards than others, but as Gavriela said, the more you learn, the more proficient you become. And too, even when you think you've got a good handle on a card, something new (a Stork? ) can always turn up if you're open to it. Then everything you've already learned before is modified a bit to assimate the additional information.

Like the quote you offered about the stork being the enemy of snakes. That is so cool to learn - for me, at least - because now when I get Storks and Snake together in a spread, I'm going to specifically look for the more positive aspects of Snake rather than the negatives.

So really, it's an ongoing process of learning, assimilating and adapting. The way I read the cards today is different from how I read them yesterday. You're likely to discover that what you initially learn for the cards will also "mutate" along the way with your own fluid interpretations.



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Akuts 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gavriela
Those 36 symbols that were chosen as the Lenormand alphabet have all kinds of associations.
This is exactly what is bothering me. The 36 Lenormand pictures were chosen in the first place because they represented or symbolised certain things to the people of that time and place. Each might represent several quite different things, and I feel that I should try to learn as much as possible about each association in order to utilise the cards to the fullest extent. I am at a disadvantage, however, because I am living in a different time and place. If the Stork card means nothing at all to me beyond being a white bird with a vague association of bringing babies (which I always thought was just something told to children), I really don't have a hope of utilising the cards as they were intended.

I'm working my way through the cards one by one, and I haven't got to the Mouse card yet, but I already suspect that I will also have a problem with this card. Many years ago I hand reared an orphaned baby field mouse. It was left by my cats on my doormat, a tiny, unformed and embryonic oval-shaped blob, which every wildlife association I contacted told me could never survive. But it did, thanks to two hourly feeds with a miniature bottle, a special formula, and lots of sterilising of equipment. He couldn't be released as he had no fear of humans or cats and was scared of the outdoors, so I kept him until he died of old age. He was a beautiful and very intelligent animal - even as a baby he would come to me when I called his name. When I see a picture of a mouse I remember my little mouse, and I miss him, and I have no idea how I am going to associate the Mouse card with theft and robbery. Loss, perhaps, but my loss because mice only live for two or three years and he was with me for such a short time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by silverr
Like the quote you offered about the stork being the enemy of snakes. That is so cool to learn - for me, at least - because now when I get Storks and Snake together in a spread, I'm going to specifically look for the more positive aspects of Snake rather than the negatives.
I find it hard to think of a snake in a negative manner at all. They're a natural part of the environment, and not only provide a food source to their predators but also help prevent whatever it is that they eat from overrunning the planet. They're also nice looking, and, while I've never touched one, I'm sure they feel pleasant to the touch. Lots of people have snakes as pets, and I find it hard to imagine that this would be so if snakes were grumpy individuals with bad attitudes.

I suppose what I'm getting at is that our modern interpretation of the cards might be quite different to what people had when the cards were first invented, and that also the meaning of any card will vary with the individual looking at it. Someone who has just been through a bad divorce will see the Ring or Heart cards quite differently to someone still on their honeymoon.
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silverr 
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Oh yes, aside from the cards, snakes feel wonderful to touch. Do find a way to get a chance (a zoo or fair, perhaps?). Some people erroneously think they're slimy, like earthworms, but they're not like that at all. They're dry, subtle and warm. It really is a good feeling.

My Snake isn't really all that negative. I read him as "sneaky" and doing things "under cover;" that's generally a neutral base, but it's often equated with negative aspects of being devious and underhanded. I like the idea of Stork offering a positive note to that. Such that instead of Snake behaving in a devious way, maybe it's a "lighter" manner, such as sneaking around preparing a surprise party for someone.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Akuts
I suppose what I'm getting at is that our modern interpretation of the cards might be quite different to what people had when the cards were first invented, and that also the meaning of any card will vary with the individual looking at it.
Absolutely. My view is that that's a very good way for things to be. The Lenormand cards offer raw symbols: a snake, a mouse, a stork, a key, a ring - what will you make of those symbols? They are neither postive nor negative in themselves; and of themselves, they mean nothing at all. And the common understanding of symbols certainly changes over time.

There is a historical precedence of certain attributions for the Lenormand language: mice symbolizing the theft of goods; a snake symbolizing someone out to get you - etc. I think it's good to learn the basic history of any method, to get a good foundation with it. But once you've got that, I believe the cards will come to life for you when you're incorporating your own associations into the symbols. I don't think you need to have a personal struggle trying to give up your personal associations in favor for those that are appropriate for a different time/country.

Nice tale of your mouse! Field mice are the best. (I had a white mouse as a pet when I was a kid. Not quite as good as a field mouse, but it was very intelligent; kept finding ways to get out of his cage, I should've named him Houdini.)

I don't read theft/loss in the Mice card becase I personally don't live in a lifestyle in which theft/loss comes up in such an extreme as how often the card comes up. The portion of the card I most relate to, though, is the worries/anxieties aspect, so that's where I get my base keyword for Mice: worry. I don't believe I'm missing out on anything by not reading theft/loss. Of course I can still understand the concept of mice getting into the grain and feed storage and stealing/eating away the supplies. And if a reading started leaning into a direction of theft/loss, I could find it in Mice. I could even find the devious thief in Snake.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Akuts
When I see a picture of a mouse I remember my little mouse, and I miss him, and I have no idea how I am going to associate the Mouse card with theft and robbery.
To this, I would say... don't. You already understand that mice can work their way into feed sacks or cheese wheels and deplete the supplies while no one's aware; just file that information away. Now think about what the symbol "mouse" means to you. Maybe it's fond memories, nostalgia, remembering a happier time...and maybe you could apply those associations to the Mice card.

In other words, when I flip over Mice, I start thinking about worry. When you flip over Mice, you start thinking about warm memories. And maybe, as we each examine all the rest of the cards, we could even start seeing Mice as indicating a loss or a deprivation...! It could happen because we've understood mice can get into things and eat away at them which could be a loss/theft. So it could happen, but it doesn't have to be our first or only idea to associate with Mice.


And sheesh, I just realized I'm taking way too many words to say exactly what Gavriela already said.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gavriela
Those 36 symbols that were chosen as the Lenormand alphabet have all kinds of associations.



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Last edited by silverr; 14-06-2008 at 18:20.
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Skydancer 
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I just found this thread and wanted to say thank you for the stork and the baby mouse stories; they've helped put a different spin on the Lenormand.

I, too, have been bitten by the L. bug - just bought an Astrological Lenormand yesterday - no idea when it will get here. But the point is - I'm "learning the language" as someone above said.

It's a WONderful change from tarot. And I've been a tarotholic for like 15 years!!

*S*



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