Tarot 8 of Pentacles Guidance for Loss and Grief of Change

8 of Pentacles A while ago I happened to be searching for information for someone from the archives of my own blog and came across a post that I wrote when I lived back in the mountains.  A pang of intense emotion accompanied the read remembering my life then as it contrasts to today’s challenges since I moved.  I’m sure this has to be a universal sentiment—as most feelings are!  What do we do when we want to go back to the past but simply cannot?  How do we handle it when our present situation falls so short of a past that we feel so fondly about?  This could apply to just about any kind of loss—this question.  I want something right now—an insight, some guidance, or wisdom to help me with this feeling.

There are many tools to use—Lord knows!  I have a huge toolbox too!  But for now my tarot cards are handy, so I did a shuffle and up came the EIGHT OF PENTACLES.  What message or insight does this card bring?

First, I’m taken by the fact that the man on the card is secluded in his work with the town or humanity in the distance.  That sure describes the situation—civilization was in the distance back then.  Today I am literally in the middle of other people’s lives—bumping into them in my own apartment even though I live alone!  [Long story – you don’t want to know!]

So first thing is that the card, in this case, describes the dilemma or situation that is being asked about.  That is so true of how it is when I work with the cards—it lets me know I’m on track; it’s validating.

This card is about developing skills and talents.  I suppose that is what grief, loss and change do—we develop new skills and talents because of that.  We want to go back and can’t (for whatever the reason) and here we are—it’s new, different and we just would rather not participate in the new reality!  Yet, here we are.

Well, that’s one insight to help with this feeling… this pang of wishing things could be like they used to be!  We have to remember that we developed skill and talents in that old situation and our life now is about developing new skills.

Yes, I hear ya’.  I don’t want to either and don’t like it one bit.  I want to love my life like I used to! 

The 8 of Pentacles is about broadening the horizon on an earthly level.  The Hermit card is most it’s opposite… the Hermit is how I used to be—alone, solitude.  Hermit is about inner knowledge and 8 of Pentacles is about outer, earthly knowledge.  Well, I’ll say this much.  I’ve learned a lot about the smells of Indian cooking, and hookah smoking and the vocalizations of Indians too!  More than I ever wanted to know but then again I’d never have known any of that if I’d stayed in the mountains.

This card also is about preparing, being prepared for something—well, whatever it is, I hope it’s going to be joyful because I’ve had enough of the opposite to last me a while!   I guess anyone who’s suffered a loss will understand that firsthand and say the very same thing.

Discipline is another aspect of this card or this part of our life journey represented ‘by’ this card.  But we are not supposed to look for an end result with these types of situations –these experiences that have us wanting to go back to how it used to be—we’re not supposed to look for an outcome.  We’re supposed to just get through them knowing we are being prepared for something in future somehow and that we are developing some type of discipline and training.  And we must try to elevate our sorrow or feelings of loss and use the depth of feeling to reach out and help others.  I’d like to think that writing this blog post may be doing that in some way.

In our life we are guided, led and sometimes shoved in directions the help us “push the envelope” so-to-speak so that we don’t become complacent.  Or perhaps we have perfected our skill and the universe had more confidence that we could handle it that we ourselves do at the present moment!

Maybe we are to become more fully conscious of our work, our true work. And to do that we cannot go back, only forward—whether we like the current pangs of desire to return or not.   If nothing else we will become experts on dealing with wanting to go back and dealing with the feelings of not being able to!

This card is encouraging us to have confidence in our skills and talents and to understand that we are learning something new that we will use to bring to our life to benefit ourselves and others—we are being prepared to elevate our skills.

THE HIEROPHANT

The Hierophant AKA The High Priest
The Hierophant AKA The High Priest

I wanted more not being fully satisfied with the information from the 8 of Pentacles.

I put all the major arcana cards together, wanting more of  MAJOR insight so-to-speak.  Whats the bigger picture?  ask the Major Aracana.

In the Hero’s Journey, the Hierophant points to “education of the hero”.

In that sense, our education–yours and mine reader.

Hierophant is the name given to the High Priest.  One task of the Hero faces is the search for meaning–that’s certainly what I’m doing.

It’s also about conforming and adapting to “the system”—wow.   Learning by living with others—well, I’m certainly doing THAT in this apartment situation in which when the neighbors talk, they talk to me too since their voices are in my room as well as their own.  They speak Hindi and i have no idea what they are saying though.

Alright, i agree that I need to mediate on this a bit more.  Maybe that ALONE will keep me from being melancholy about my past!

I may come back to this post to add more as I reflect upon this.

ADDENDUM:  this is me coming back to this post after 5 days.  Around the time of the original post, it was the anniversary of my mother’s death, three years ago.  I don’t know if this was subconsciously affecting me or the stress of living with the Indian couple below me which felt that day like a mini-breakdown of some kind–on my last nerve with their constant noise.  However, shortly after that post I went into a meditation period which lasted 10 hours with only short breaks for bathroom and a bowl of soup–otherwise I sat in a semi-lotus pose on my bed chanting and turning to my old ritual of praying the rosary and periods of complete silence and breath work.  In that 10 hour period the messages of the 10 of Pentacles and Hierophant were much clearer.  I was actually taking the advice of the cards—doing my spiritual work away from the human community (my meditation music gave me the space) and turning to the old religious-type traditions of prayer, chanting which merged catholocism, hinduism and tibetan buddhism.  I knew then that i was doing the Hierophant “thing” without knowing it until that moment.  In the midst of the 10 hours i asked for one message or insight not wanting to clutter up the energy but to rather simplify it and clear it instead.  The one message was given at my request.  CENTER is the word that I heard and then I heard BETWEEN THE TWO PILLARS and then I knew that it was the Hierophant card meaning that I was being given and i was doing that very thing so it was as if it all came together.  The next day i remained in that quiet centered state also.  I am blessed to be able to schedule my own work and life and living alone I was able to devote myself to 10 hours of meditation as therapy doing my spiritual work. 

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Working for Ego, for Spirit or for the sake of the work itself? What’s the Motivation for what you are doing daily?

Busy as a Bee? What's the Motivation?
Busy as the Bees in this Photo? What’s the Motivation?

Working for Ego or Spirit – What’s the Motivation?

Maybe you do this; like I do this – or you don’t.  Do what?  Well, sometimes not what you ‘think’ you should do.  And sometimes we wonder if what we have a plan to do will really make any difference.  I think it’s about the motivation or the reason we do what we do.  That’s what’s what we should examine or look at.   I’ve noticed how people can be uptight and workaholic in their nature and announce or pronounce that they are accomplishing some great task or project and they are too busily involved with this to be distracted from it.  That kind of focus is good and we need that once in a while.  I know how to do that too—been there, done that.  These days, I’m looking at my motivation for everything and that comes along with part of the contemplations involved on my spiritual path.

I question my reason  for doing whatever it is I’ve plans to do and if the motivation to do it isn’t in alignment with my “path” (to use an easy word), then it’s a bit harder to dive in with passion.

I know how it is to be as busy as a bee (see image of honey bees at work above) and also how it is not to be so.  Sometimes I come up with issues either way—the busy bee syndrome can turn into either escapism OR it becomes one huge attachment.  And we know (or at least I do, first hand) what happens with attachments—something’s got to give in order to loosen our grip and that isn’t always pretty.  Best not to go there in the first place!

When you’re younger and with family responsibilities, your motivation is pretty clear, easy, altruistic and necessary–to put food on the table and clothes on the children.  It gets a bit more complicated as you get older and those types of motivations are…. well, no longer motivating. Well, they are and they aren’t–we do get weary of survival needs motivating us and we really want to get past it or be more inspired.

Personally, I’ve been re-inspired by the Buddhist teachings called “The Thirty-Seven Practices of a Bodhisattva”–completely.  I’m going to start blogging about those!  Talk about working with one’s faults and evolving–totally!  I can see the potential and benefit for personal spiritual alignment and then sharing the works with others may be helpful; but the motivation is… well, its not the same as other things in my life.

Recently I read a teaching in which the point had to do with doing the work because we all have some sort of function here and do the work for the sake of the work itself—lose the attachment to the idea of its importance or your “standing”  in relation to it.  In other words, get the ego out.

That sort of squares with these concepts of this life being an illusion or dream-reality and those notions do filter-in and merge with the idea what I do and don’t do in daily life on a daily basis.

Of course, I am not talking about doing my psychic reading work here—for that is clearly in alignment with all my personal spiritual ideals regarding compassion and expanded consciousness, etc.  I’m more or less referring to my work in composing an astrology course.

I like the idea of simply ‘going with’ this concept that  “we all have a function here, so function” –but don’t get attached to the importance of your  function and don’t engage in the task thinking that you are going to create some type of particular outcome.  And certainly don’t do it because you are trying to be busy as a bee in order to appear important to others or because it’s another way of escaping from contemplating your life.  See what I mean?

Have you ever been right on the edge with life?  Maybe even had one of those close to (if not outright) near death experiences or perhaps even been very sick for a day or two.  Almost everybody has had that last experience and can relate.  You know how everything in life sort of fades away and you seem to be hanging on by each breath or something?   Or maybe there was a close call in your car in traffic or the airplane you were in caught an air pocket during a rough weather patch and you felt the fall of the plane.  How important is your project or work then, eh?  What is it that ‘really’ matters?

I have been struggling with the right motivation in writing the astrology class.  My beginning purpose was to put something down for my grandson and niece—to explain astrology for the beginner in my own way, writing the steps of importance as they seem clear to me.  Like with the psychic class, the motivation is to write it out in a way that I wish I could have learned it.

I read a blog post from an Internet Buddhist Teacher who wrote out about his work something that I felt about the psychic class that I wrote.  Let’s see, how did he say it?   Here we go.  He wrote:  “There was no internet in those days so if you wanted to get the answer to a question; you had to physically hunt out someone who had the answer.”  He also wrote: “I can’t imagine what it would’ve been like to have a resource like this site when I was starting out. That’s one of the main reasons I decided to do it.”  That’s exactly how I felt about the psychic class when I wrote it.  I remember driving long distances and spending many hours with other psychics in classes on Sunday afternoons and attending (at great expense of money and time) many seminars and classes—simply because those were the only sources available pre-google.

My motivation these days is to do the work (of the astrology class) using the right motivation.  I sat here for a moment trying to remember which book mentioned the attitude and motivation toward work that jumped out at me and sparked something within me.  Which book was that?  Just as if in a dream, a moment ago I got up and walked right to it then flipped a few pages and there it was.  It’s a book  on talks with the famous sage Nisargadatta and the subject was work and previous to that about being dissolved by The Supreme which creates perfect balance in all things which dissolves you and thus reasserts your true being.  When asked how this works in daily life, Nisargadatta said, “The daily life is a life of action.  Whether you like it or not, you must function. “

That last line reminds me of that one theme in the move THE MATRIX.  It was about programs that are written for everything that functions in the matrix—a program even for the birds in the park, a program for everything to function.

Anyway, he goes on after stating that everyone must function.  “Whatever you do for your own sake accumulates and becomes explosive—one day it goes off and plays havoc with you and your world.  When you deceive yourself that you work for the good of all, it makes matters worse, for you should not be guided by your own ideas of what is good for others.  A man who claims to know what is good for others is dangerous.”

On a gut level I really get that last line—it’s a karma thing of course.

So then the question was asked about how a person is supposed to work then.  What’s the right attitude and the right motivation? And his answer was, “Neither for yourself nor for others, but for the work’s own sake.  A thing worth doing is its own purpose and meaning.  Make nothing a means to something else.  Bind not.  The Divine Intelligence (God) does not create one thing to serve another.  Each is made for its own sake.  Because it is made for itself, it does not interfere.”

I’ve been thinking about that and as I struggle with the right motivation for my astrology writing project work, I also came across this this morning in my email from www.tut.com .   I like these short pithy sentence or two’s and sometimes they resonate and sometimes not; however today’s did when factored in with all else.  Here’s what it said:

Judging yourself for what you haven’t yet accomplished, Joy, is like finding fault with a lion because it can’t fly, a bird because it can’t swim, or tree because it can’t leave… well, you know what I mean.

Whop,
The Universe

There’s some peace in that and with my self-coaching about self-acceptance and my underlying and core belief that all things come together in divine timing!

And now let me gather up the right motivation and keep my function in mind and let the work do the work for the work while my fingers do the typing—translation:  back to writing the astrology course letting pure being emerge.

Merge, Harmonize or Maintain Separation? Living with Mumbai Neighbors in the USA!

MUMBAI
Mumbai!!

Maybe it is a matter of merging and harmonizing—and not being/feeling/trying so hard to be separate.  Maybe that’s the lesson from Lord and Lady Mouth of Mumbai!  Okay, so I am being sarcastic and cynical and I shouldn’t call them that.  You may want to cut me a break with that since I’ve been up until after 1 AM listening to their gyrations, door slamming and loud-mouthing!  Yeah, I make myself stay up until they quiet down because IF NOT I have horrible dreams from their fighting and door slamming.  Yeah, talk to the management?  I have, they say call the police or slam the wall or stomp my feet and they will get the message.

It is about merging and harmonizing instead of fighting it!  And them!  And myself!  At least I think that’s the approach.  After all, what I’ve seen of India—aside from the ashram of the late Sathya Sai Baba—and PBS documentaries showing crowded streets and dog-eat-dog chaos amounts to a sum total of that and the movie,  Slumdog Millionaire!  Their way of life is probably 1,000 different than my own—they are obviously used to merging with others more than I am.  With a population like that I’d suppose you’d have to know how –and I’d not be able to survive in India the way I’m not able to even merge or harmonize with my downstairs neighbors!

Many of us get this concept of India that everyone there is like Deepak Chopra or are meditation masters.  I cannot tell you how many people from India that I’ve met who say they don’t even know how to meditate—so they’re just like Americans in that sense.  I can’t lump the whole culture; that’s not fair and of course I’m blogging while sleep deprived here on top of being frustrated with the paper-thin walls here while now knowing that I’m hugely overpaying in rent for such a shoddily and cheaply constructed structure.  But there it is—fact.  It is what it is.

Some light here involves my soon to be married daughter who lives in suburbia in a beautiful community of condo—it’s gorgeous!  In the summer time their pool is supervised and the last 10 minutes of every hour of the day they clear the kids from the pool so that adults can do lap swimming.  YES!!!!  She mentioned that when they buy their house in another year that they would … well, she’s going to talk it over with her soon to be husband, but she indicated that it’s possible that they could rent their condo to me!!  I do miss the mountains and planned to go back – something more deeply affirmed within my since the super-mouths of Mumbia moved in below me.  (If you’ve not been paying attention to my blog, they have earned that well-deserved name with me due to their 24-7 marathon dialogues interspersed with sudden fights that spring up just when you suspect they’ve finally fallen asleep throughout the wee early mornings!)  They don’t leave for Monster’s Inc. (Lowes Headquarters) until around 9:30 AM but I’m up by 6 AM to welcome my granddaughter in while we wait together for the time for her school bus—her mother has a long drive to work and has to leave early.

Oh, why not put on a fan for white noise?  Yeah?  I hear them over the sound of the fan and if I fall asleep before they do (their fighting and loud voices beneath my bed can still be heard anyway), the result for is crazy, horrible dreams—nightmares.  Bad dreams were coming every night (not typical for me AT ALL) until I woke straight up out of one and heard them fighting beneath me….duhh, no wonder!   Honestly, these folks go on-and-on-and-on-and-on and never give it a rest!  I’ve never heard anything like it and really if there was an award given for people who talk, bicker and fight non-stop—they’d be the clear winners!

I was feeling the FLIGHT OR FIGHT feeling in my bed while reading my spiritual book—that’s when they first moved in you see and I didn’t realize that there were new neighbors.  Suddenly in the midst of my reading i feel that whole ‘fight or flight’ panic in my body.  Really? where’s that coming from?  I put my book down to go within to figure it out when i realize that i think i hear a voice, man’s voice.  No I think, I must be imagining it.  My fan is on, vibrating, making white noise.  I go back to my book.  Again, louder, voices…. still feeling my heart race and sort of panic feeling.  What is going on here?  so am I crazy?  I get up to turn off the fan to find out and yeah!  Its Lord and Lady Mumbi –the downstairs neighbors–going on and on yelling to each other beneath my bed!

Okay anyway, i’ve got one idea–it could help.  I am going to get some inexpensive door mirrors at Wal Mart and put them mirror side down beneath my bed hoping that whatever energy comes up will be forced back down via the mirrors!   I’ll let you know how it works.  It won’t muffle sound but may direct energy back down so i don’t feel it in my body.  In this instance of the Mumbai neighbors, the fact that I’m a sensitive, a psychic, is more a hindrance than a help.

Enough kvetching!  The only thing I can do is try to harmonize instead of insisting that I maintain separation.  I want to say this is MY sacred space and your voices and door slamming sounds are NOT ALLOWED—GET OUT@!!  But, how realistic is that with these paper thin walls?  Their voices just carry—they’re the opposite of ‘soft talkers’.  I suspect one or both may be partially deaf –this I try to believe to evoke compassion for them which at 1 AM is really difficult, but I do try!

Anyway, one coping mechanism is to run the dishwasher through a few cycles; that muffles Mumbai for about an hour and a half.  I put my TV onto the Buddhist channel the rest of the time in an effort to change the vibe –but really in the evenings my habit is to meditate or read; usually both.  How long can I listen to the Dalai Lama’s translators or the sound of my own dishwasher before that gets old too?  Well, there’s always old re-runs of Grey’s Anatomy or a Harry Potter DVD, but the point is that’s all me still trying to separate instead of merging and harmonizing.

Anyway, that’s my thought for today—it has to do with my observation that I am trying to separate myself from humanity and humanity is right underneath my feet letting me know it’s not going anywhere!  Nice!  And they say the universe has no sense of humor!

Part of this is not their fault!  The shouting and slamming doors—yeah, I’m going to have to talk to them about that stuff that goes on after 10:00 PM; there’s no need for THAT!  The other part of it is just them being them—humans!  Humans’ way too close to my turf!  Boy O boy do I miss the old tenant … a single guy who just played his TV … a movie every now and then.  No problem; I’d go into the bedroom, turn on my fan and read my book.  Sure.  I’d hear him on the phone now and again but ‘what the heck’, a person has to talk once in a while.  But these folks—OMG!  It’s like a 24 hour phone call–!!

The weekend is upon us—and really I’d like to work more on writing my astrology class but why bang my head against the wall?  It’s impossible to think straight with the motor-mouths of Mumbai going at it all day long!  So, I’ll be coming up with a plan B today; maybe I can take my whole act over to my daughter’s house—she’s 5 doors down and hardly ever hears her neighbors.

Well, they don’t leave for Monster’s Inc for another 45 minutes.  I’ve been totally killing time here waiting for them to leave for their jobs.  I may go back to bed for a while which I really don’t like doing b but you won’t find THIS hard to believe—I’ve got a sore throat and head cold since yesterday afternoon.  Yeah, figures.

See that photo of Mumbai?  I nearly laughed out loud!  Apparently, they’re used to living like that—and yeah, I’d never make it there OR I’d have to learn to merge and harmonize.  Just look at the photo; that many people crowded together like that?  They probably learned to shout to one another just to be heard over their neighbor!!  They’re probably doing what is in entirely natural for them and I’m the one who has the problem!!  I’m trying to see me from their point of view.

Could I be better at harmonizing and being more tolerant?  Yeah, I really think I can and should try harder!  Just look at that picture!  I look at the birds outside my window taking turns to come to the birdfeeder… they sit on the branches waiting for some to clear out while others are there.  Somehow they merge and harmonize and …. Well, some do flap their wings at the others, but still.  I think that when the Mouths of Mumbai are home, I should be not home as much as possible.  I should fly away like the birds to the birdfeeder.  I’ve got to get better at harmonizing and merging with humanity; but I will still carry the Plan B to go back to the wilderness.  I sure do miss the quiet and serenity of the mountains.

Merge, harmonize, blend and quit thinking that you are a separate ego Joy!!!  You are only energy in the world like everyone and everything else.  Lose your illusion of separateness and put the ego to bed, for good—merge, dissolve, blend, harmonize.  Let go.  Namaste Mumbi Mouth Lord and Lady, Namaste!

Excuse me now.  I’m going to bed to nurse my cold and restore my health! It is 9:15 AM ; they should be soon leaving for Monster’s Inc.  Please god, don’t tell me that they have the day off today!!  I’m waiting to hear the door close…. waiting, waiting, waiting…..   Oh, thank you jesus…9:20 AM and their door closes…they’ve gone…. AMEN.

Yeah, I’ll admit to being close to going over the edge…. but for now i’m going to grab  my Kleenex and get back into bed!

 

Daily Divination 6-3-11 Doing the Great Work of Your Life! Here’s Help from 3 of Pentacles, Mars in Capricorn

Mars in Capricorn is the same archetype as today’s tarot card, 3 of Pentacles. Today’s cosmic communiqué relates to having the courage (Mars) to do the great work (Capricorn) of your life.

Suddenly, I am hearing in my mind the old Nike commercial slogan, “Just do it!” This is an old observation or one that I reference a lot and that has to do with the occasional psychic student who laments that they are not progressing and after investigating their habits, eventually admit they are not practicing regularly.

To do the work means to do the work. It’s pretty simple in mundane terms; but sometimes, emotionally, one needs to draw upon inner courage. Why courage?

Perhaps there is a fear of failure or fear of risk taking and it takes courage to overcome such fear.

The part that Capricorn plays is about getting REAL.  Getting real is an archetype of Capricorn and Saturn energy. So we could add, getting real about the fears or to borrow another slogan, “Feel the fear and do it anyway.”

The archetype of this card involves perseverance (Capricorn is ruled by Saturn—the forte’ of this energy is as the Dalai Lama puts it, “determined effort!”).  I love the way he say’s those words, the energy that comes through his vibe when he speaks those words is quite the message!

Such a great combo – Mars and Capricorn!

Exuberant, passionate and courageous Mars united with grounded, focused and patient Capricorn and patient is a powerful combination.  This epitomizes the meaning of the 3 of pentacles.

So Mars gives the impetus, push and impulse and Capricorn gives the determination and perseverance. Put them together and you have the energy of today’s message!

Tap into your passions (Mars) and use determined effort (Saturn) and “Just do it!”

You will eventually reap what you sow.

We mustn’t let minor frustrations and irritations get the best of us.

There is a flower essence that is helpful for those who are easily deterred by setbacks. It is called Gentian.

Even a picture of this flower kept near the work area is helpful to open the 6th chakra so that insights into one’s skills can be appreciated and to help one see their way through difficult work situations.

One can use the flower essence and meditate with the energy of Gentian to bring positive results as well.

Acknowledge your mastery of skills and release the small irritations and setbacks that are simply a part of life.

Be willing to face reality (Capricorn/Saturn) and realize that the challenges and disappointments of life can be used as a source of strength and courage (Mars).

If you are working “too hard” at it and seem to be getting nowhere, consider taking a mini-vacation to clear the energy and go back to it and try again. It’s amazing how well that works!  We don’t do our work very well when we are out of balance or overly tired.

I wish you a wonderful Friday!  See you tomorrow…

Post Script– another message is to examine your issues with “control” or “losing control”  and as a final note let me add that sometimes we need to lose control or let go of our “need to control” in order to be successful with some things in life that we’re having trouble with.  Where might you be too controlling when it comes to your work or career issues?  If you find that loosing control a bit more (in a positive way, of course) could be helpful for you–just do it!  This would apply especially do doing psychic work; it’s best to release control and just flow.  Yet with  any career issue, we benefit a great deal when we can just flow or channel creative energy without being overly conscious of our personality self–that is letting go of control in a positive way.  Hope this PS helps someone out there is cyberspace.