Tarot Oracle Helps Solve Toad in Cellar Issue – Strange But True Story

5 of Wands
5 of Wands

I have something on my mind… an inner question.  Maybe it’s a silly one.  I have been dealing with issues in the cellar—a long story that I won’t bore you with involving a dehumidifier and a damp, leaky and unfinished half-basement. 

There’ve been salamanders down there—I’ve caught a glimpse of them once or twice in all the years that I’ve been here.  So that is what it is—really a non-issue.  I just go down there to throw in the wet clothes into the dryer and then rush back up.  I have seen this toad though fairly consistently over the past year.  Oh, he’s small really and brown and he’s slow and seems old—doesn’t jump around much and isn’t afraid of people.  He holds his ground.  When the landlord is here or the Exterminator for the mice [which are no longer an issue, thank you] comes, I always ask what they see down there and every answer is the same:  just a little frog. 

Yeah, I think frogs are green and toads are brown but I don’t know for sure—this guy seems like a toad since he’s brown but we’re seeing the same little critter.  I used to stare at him and he at me while I put clothes in and out of the dryer, the whole while saying, “Okay don’t you jump–just stay where you are we’ll be fine—you leave me alone and I’ll do the same”.   

Now that I’ve been going down there to deal with a dehumidifier issue–sometimes several times or more a day I’ve been down there lately.   And of course, each time I see Samuel.  Yeah, I name things and so I call out to him when I’m there, “Hey Sammy where are you?”  Or “Sam, what-z up dude?”   Now, I don’t know why I think this little brown toad is an old male, but that’s my delusion maybe.

I’ve been thinking about him lately and wondering if he is in a hell-realm there and if I should find a way to scoop him up somehow and take him outside.  What’s he eating down there?  Maybe crickets or spiders or something and of course the leaky basement provides some water for him when it rains.  But now with a dehumidifier down there, maybe I’m messing with his ecosystem?

How would he do outside?  He’s been in that hell-of-a-realm for a good while and he’s slow and maybe sick… could the outdoors be worse for him?  After all, who am I to interfere with Sam’s karma?  

I think of a Buddhist teaching about how our ego/personality mind will create problems where none exist or will worry just to give itself a job to do if you don’t give it something better to do. 

And I do have better things to do.  I need to get a life, right?  I have a lot of home and yard projects and my psychic work and other things that I’d like to call “a life”.  I want to get this issue with Sammy the toad out of my mind!  I’m going to turn to the tarot cards—believe it or not—to ask what to do about Sammy.  Should I leave him alone or try to get him out of the hell-of-a-realm, scooping up and escorting him outside?  Maybe ole’ Sam has lived down there longer than I have –maybe he was born down there and maybe didn’t just somehow hop in around a weak cellar window by mistake.  Who knows?

The bottom line question:  With all things considered, is it best if I leave this toad alone?  What should I consider about that?  Okay, so I am going to grab my cards because I just want this to be resolved in my mind and I’ve decided that I will go by whatever the oracle says here!  So, let’s shuffle….

O boy!  5 of Wands [image above].  A guy in a boat, surrounded by stormy water.  My first thought is that this toad got washed into the cellar somehow during a storm.  Actually, I am thinking of that year when we had the remnants of Hurricane Irene… there was a lot of water.  So, apparently, he’s been down there for years.  I was only renting here for about a year or so when the rainy leftover’s of hurricane Irene came through here.

Listen, hold on a second… I have to put some seed in the bird feeder outside.  I put a day’s worth in during the morning hours because otherwise, this raccoon that looks like a big dog (I swear he looks like a German shepherd dog size-wise) comes by at night and eats it all. I’ve caught him red handed.  I tap on the window when I see him and he sheepishly walks away!  Anyway, the birds are calling…be right back.

Aside from the 5 of Wands being about unnecessary hassles, petty annoyances and trivial issues, I still don’t know what to do.  However, I do feel the card guided me to an understanding of how the toad got there to start with.   It seems that this card is telling me not to worry about it… that it’s a trivial issue. 

Actually, I already know that.  I just want to know if the toad is suffering I guess.  Let me shuffle again.  It doesn’t seem like a healthy environment down there… not much light coming in.  Don’t toads need sunlight?  Maybe I should google toad information but that is going to get my mind in even a worse tangle I’m sure!

I’m going to a yes/no format with my cards now… aces are indicators of a yes.  Is the little guy suffering by being in the cellar environment?  Yes or No?  (I added the words “by being in the cellar environment” at the end because while he may be suffering because all sentient beings do, my question is made more specific by adding the words in quotations to make the question more specific.)   Or we could ask:   Is the suffering of this sentient being increased by being in the cellar I like that wording better.

YES Answer; Ace in 3rd Pile is YES indicator
YES Answer; Ace in 3rd Pile is YES indicator

Oh, shoot!  Darn.  I got a YES answer to that question—Ace in the 3rd stack.  And in the other two stacks of 13 cards, the top cards [which can also be ‘read’] are ‘The World’ and ‘4 of Wands’.  Gee, the 4 of Wands is about being outside of the home and happy.  And ‘The World’ is about ending/completion.  I’m starting to get the feeling that I should find a way to scoop up the toad and get him outside.  Maybe I will wait until my grandson comes to help me with that drama/trauma.  I don’t want to hurt Sammy, you know? 

Well, let me ask another Yes or No Question.  If this toad’s suffering is increased by being down in the hell-of-a-realm basement, shall I then scoop him up and take him outside?  Maybe he’s used to it down there and to take him outside would increase his suffering or a predator could get him; after all, he doesn’t hop much.  Geesh.  What a can of worms my mind opened up here! 

Okay, so shall I scoop him up and out?  Yes or No?  Well.  I get a NO to that one with a very weak, well yeah maybe indicator—an Ace [of Swords] in the 2nd pile.   The Ace in the 2nd pile is saying, “Well, you could but really no you shouldn’t.”   That’s the way this Yes/No spread works-the rules.

NO Indicator:  No Ace in 3rd Pile
NO Indicator: No Ace in 3rd Pile

You know I think that this frog’s fate [or this toad trouble]  is a doomed destiny either way and maybe we should let him die a natural death where he’s used to his surroundings and where he won’t be beat up worse [9 of Wands].  He seems to be coping down there.  The landlord may be sending some workers to clean up some building materials that were down there since I moved in.  I will tell them to be careful of the toad if they see him; hopefully he will go hide away from the workers.  The other 2 cards I received were 9 of Wands and 5 of Pentacles [Coins].  Yeah, you can see the contemplation that I’m doing about this reflected in the 5 of Pentacles and the 9 of Wands is probably a reflection of the beat up toad [I’m not sure but he may be missing a leg; thus the hopping problem] and also it is me beating myself up over this issue.  LOL 

I send him love and healing now and am not afraid of him hopping toward me like I used to be.  He may have lost a leg when he traveled via the gutter system during the storm.  Bless his heart.  I’d forgotten that — I had that thought last night when I saw him hop while I was down there; it was a strange hop and he sits tilted.  I think one of his legs is gone. 😦

I would like to bring him sunlight as a gift and a green lawn.  Last night I did leave a light on down there… I mean what the heck, light is light even if it is artificial.  Like I said, bless his heart. 

Maybe you will send him a little love.  Yeah, I know, he’s only a little brown toad with only one leg but all sentient beings deserve to be free from suffering. 

Now, I have settled this issue.  The cellar increases his suffering, yet I should not try to scoop him up to take him outside—we should let him remain in his familiar environment because either way, his journey on Earth is about over.  There are several indicators — the 9 in the of Wands; 9 indicate endings. And the other indicator of the end of the line for this toad is the card of  The World–the last card of the major arcana; the card indicating a completed cycle. 

It is more humane not to traumatized him further through my act of scooping him up and putting him outside; he’s used to [accustomed to] his present environment and is probably coping the best as he can–just the same as we all are. 

May he, and all sentient beings, be free of suffering!

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Daily Divination 5-25-11 Dealing with Newfound Freedom, Seeking Harmony, Finding HOME – Mary’s Story – 4 of Wands, Venus in Aries

Do you know a Mary like this?  Is she you?  Or someone you know? 

We’ve recently experienced a period of Venus in Aries along with 6 other planets. The 4 of Wands and Venus in Aries–same energy.  Venus relates to meeting self needs and in Aries she loves freedom (so does Sagittarius), but this is a story about Mary who has recently won her freedom (Aries) and is trying to determine how to meet her own needs (Venus).

Venus has moved into Taurus now, and those needs and newfound freedoms are seeking ways stabilize and restore harmony.  This is the story of Mary who is wrestling with these energy dynamics.

How do we release the pressures or stresses of life? Sometimes we look for or try to attain harmony or to affect equilibrium in ways that are healthy, but sometimes we look outside our self for what we think will bring balance.

Mary (not a real person) has been in a difficult relationship for a number of years and has suppressed or repressed her own needs and natural emotional responses for the sake of her partner, fearful of rocking the boat (confrontation issues).

She finally finds the courage to end the relationship and is now faced with real, honest to goodness in-your-face survival issues.

After the initial victory is achieved (it took a lot of courage), there are so many loose ends emotionally but in a Taurus kind of way, also materially.

There are many unresolved concerns–property, bills, support issues, divorce and separation issues and her life seems like one huge mess.

Let’s say she has children too, so in addition to all of that,  there are also custody and visitation issues with the X who is giving her a hard time!  Bless her heart, this is quite a challenge.  I know we can all sympathize with Mary’s difficult dilemma.

It’s a real hot bed of stress and she feels like she has simply exchanged one set of stressors for another!

The good thing is that she is finally addressing at least some of her own needs.

Today I drew the 4 of wands and the archetypal energy of this card is the same as Venus in Aries energy. Venus in Aries is about taking care of your own needs—yeah, being selfish enough to do that!   And that’s a good thing, but in the hot bed of stress where Mary finds herself, it’s hard to know what those needs are and how to fulfill them.

Mary is still  in “escape mode” and can’t seem to get herself out of it. After years of visualizing an escape from the marriage in which she suffered a great deal, she is finally free but still runs avoidance and diversion tactics with friends and family.

Her desire truly is for harmony much like the image on the tarot card above epitomizes, but it’s been so long since she’s had any of that, she doesn’t know how to go about achieving it anymore. Maybe she never did in the first place.  Heck, maybe that’s the entire focus of her soul’s life lesson!

With the pressure still on due to all the unresolved separation issues, Mary may revert to old coping behaviors. These may be some of the same ones that she was drawn to using during the marriage or those from prior to her marriage.  She might even be reverting to old patterns from past lives.

Mary is so filled with tension and pressure and somewhat confused about how to deal with her newfound freedom that she still wants to escape. Completion and moving on to a new life seems too far away in the future for her and with the existing pressures of the divorce, she can’t seem to see or feel her way out of this.

The restlessness in Mary’s heart is difficult for her.  She wants a new life and doesn’t seem to know how to envision it or create it, and this causes even more pressure and stress. So Mary, in this case, may revert back to old habits or, again, old coping methods—even those from her teenage years, especially if she has been in a long marriage during which she was not very in touch with her own soul.

You see, Mary is a people pleaser—she really has a good heart and hates confrontation. This has kept her from really knowing herself all these many years.  Let’s say Mary is near the age of around 35 years old.

What Mary knows of herself right now isn’t making her very happy. Major soul issues are before her and she will have to make a choice about how to deal with her response to her current life pressures, choices and decisions.

Will she revert to old patterns of escapism behaviors seeking harmony outside of herself? Will she use her newfound freedom to cope in unhealthy ways perhaps by going out to nightclubs and staying out late at night? Or will she use her free time to go within and seek the true source of harmony within herself?

Venus in Aries and the 4 of wands is about meeting one’s own needs in order to establish equilibrium and harmony.  As we see on the image of the card, the action takes place outside of the home.

Mary feels sort of like this: “I’ve moved away from a familiar situation that I knew as ‘home’, and now I have nowhere to go.”  Where’s home?

The energy of this card is about wanting to have someone to have fun with, seeking freedom from an oppressive situation.

Yet, sometimes that oppression is within one’s own self and is simply mirrored in the outer world.

That’s not to say that Mary wasn’t actually in an oppressive situation (let’s agree for this example that she actually was).   And let’s agree that it’s a good thing she had the courage to protect herself from a situation that was abusive, but Mary has to be careful not to continue that abuse within herself.

Mary needs to find the freedom within herself and be good to herself in healthy ways. We can imagine that this would be challenging for her.   After all, her life is still so full of stress and pressure from not having things settled from the marriage.  Let’s say she’s living with a friend or in shelter of some sort and it’s difficult.  Add to this that she’s also dealing with the emotional issues of the children being separated from their father–it’s a difficult and complicated time!  She’s taken the first step but still has a way to go.

Mary is cutting loose and ready to open up to new possibilities. But she has to take care of herself (Venus in Aries) and her needs. She may want to have the fun and excitement and go to parties—things she hasn’t done since her pre-marriage years—but she has to consider avoiding extremes. Venus rules Libra, and Libra is the polarity of Aries, and this energy can be very extreme!

You see, one moment Mary is meeting all her responsibilities with her job and children and trying to deal with the x-partner as far as visitation and separation agreements are concerned.  She’s dealing with all that and the legal issues of a divorce in one moment and then in the next moment (perhaps when the children visit their father) she goes out all night and worries her roommate sick about her whereabouts and safety!

Has Mary been running away from herself since childhood?

All Mary wants is peace and harmony and to be happy.   But she has yet to realize that these energies exist within her.   Unless she breaks the escape pattern  that she’s running and deals with the other emotional pattern carry overs, Mary is headed for trouble.

It would be productive for Mary to speak with a counselor or spend time alone in meditation or to write in a journal. Parties, nightclubs and one-nighter’s will not restore the ultimate harmony that Mary is seeking even though they are an expression of her newfound freedom. Moderation and balance with these expressions of freedom is vital, but Mary swings from periods ultra-responsible behavior to wild and carefree irresponsibility.

Mary has been running an escape program of behavior since childhood.  She escaped her parent’s home and married young, believing marriage would bring her the feeling of freedom and harmony that her soul came into the world seeking.

The message for today from my made-up story about Mary is to question in which ways you are fulfilling your need for freedom and harmony in your life. Are you, like Mary, attempting to meet those needs outside the home of your own soul?   Are you looking for those needs to be met in the outer world somewhere?  Or are you seeking from within?

Me and Bobbie McGee! Freedom’s just another word for nothing left to lose. –Janice Joplin

If you’re not emotionally free, then you’re not really free.

Mary, in my made-up story, needs to determine for herself is she is in control of her emotions or if her emotions are controlling her.  She’s free now to make  her own choices, but will she make wise ones with her newfound freedom? If her emotions control her and she continues to seek resolution outside of herself, she could lose until there’s nothing more to lose—perhaps her children, her job, etc.?  God forbid!

We’d like to think that Mary will seek counseling or turn to the wisdom of her inner guide long before anything Janice Joplin’ish like that  even comes close to happening!  The freedom that Mary has sought and won comes with many choices and new opportunities for growth and happiness.

Will Mary take the High Road or the Low Road?

There are many ways for Mary to try to meet her needs (Venus in Aries) and the high road or the low road both offer choices and decisions.

Self-imposed restrictions and responsibilities come along with freedom. It’s a perfect time for Mary to examine patterns of the past and seek inner guidance, listening to the still small voice within–but that voice can’t be heard in nightclubs.  She has to spend time alone in quietude and solitude if she’s going to find what she’s truly seeking!

One would hope that the Mary of our story is able to center and ground in her spirit and come home to herself after many years of trying in vain and after repeated unsuccessful attempts to find where ‘home’ really is.

The number 4  on the tarot card represents balance and stability; we see that number in the 4 elements, the 4 directions, the 4 seasons, etc. And the number 4 also represents the grounded nature of all things as well as persistent effort.

The numerical part of this tarot card is a reminder to avoid the extremes of life–everything in moderation!

May we all find our true home within!   Today, I send my love to any Mary’s out there! Come home soon!  Freedom is an inside job!

PSsssst–  Choose the high road!

[We all have the energy of our higher dimensional selves or soul aspects in spirit world to draw upon to provide energy in times of need.  This I have read numerous places and it resonates with my own intuition.  If calling upon a deity or angel seems more fitting to you, it seems to get the same results.  This is how meditation can help.  Additionally, any resemblance of my made-up Mary to anyone you know is purely accidental.  I drew upon my own experiences after my own divorce 20+ years ago and from the time I spent working in a woman’s abuse shelter, also many years ago. Today, I was experimenting with a new writing style for the blog post.   As always, my intention is to help someone out in cyber world when I do these daily blogs. One last thing…  on the Joplin quote, the meaning got tweaked a bit to suit my needs for this post.]