As we experience this New Moon, a time perfect for setting intentions and walking through newly opened doors, this month’s reading is presenting us with a clear message: to trust in something greater than ourselves and to acknowledge how that life force supports and guides us. That we are not alone and that, even though we may think no one is listening, our good angels and helping spirits ask us only to appreciate the magic and beauty around us by noticing the simple things that work so well that give us so much.
Each card has a theme: what are we not seeing? In the 10 of Pentacles, there is man with his back to us not looking at his wife; they are not paying attention to their child nor the elder man behind them. In fact, the only ones doing the acknowledging are the two dogs. They greet the old man and in their innocent need to play, he reaches out and pats one on the head. Innocence and joy, it seems, have a direct connection to aged wisdom.
Ten pentacles, in the pattern of the Tree of Life, overlays this image of a wealthy family in their terrace, but the message is subtle. When life is providing for us so well without lack or want, we can become oblivious to how well it is operating. The “ten” card takes the fulfillment of the “nine” and takes it a step further. In the suit of Pentacles, this can mean that the energy that is around us takes on a larger significance, one that can go unnoticed, and one that we can disconnect from if we let our awareness slide.
For example, if we work hard at earning money, we will notice when a lot more of it comes to us. Suddenly, one’s way of life becomes easier and we are less concerned with paying the bills or having the money for the things we want. But later, when we have become accustomed to our new wealth, the expansion that created it stops as we prepare to expand through a new cycle. Our lives seem only too normal again and we don’t look as we once did at a beautiful rainbow or listen to that evening songbird that just did a one-up on Pavarotti.
The 10 of Pentacles is about wealth. But it is more about recognizing the energy of wealth as it operates in the world. The card speaks about connecting and noticing how this energy moves around and touches everything and everyone in magical ways. The 9 of Pentacles saw a woman in her garden, disciplined yet beautifully at peace in her garden of abundance, an image of true alignment. The 10 shows that energy becoming more than our efforts, more than what we’ve created, and taking on a broader and deeper significance.
In the “recent past” position and preceding the 9 of Swords, it suggests that whatever is happening now arose out of a disconnection from our core in some way, and that in order to move back into a sense of thriving, we must take care of what gives us joy, to what connects us to joy, so that we may see it around us once again.
Next, in the 9 of Swords, something has awoken us. A feeling as if one can’t escape the dream that has unsettled our sleep. Our subconscious is now speaking a little more in the forefront and we are confronted with feelings that have been tucked away in the back of our minds.
Here, a person is covering their face in a moment of painful awakening. But also notice how he is not able to see the roses (love) and astrological symbols (wisdom) that cover him and give him warmth. The swords are piled up on one another and they loom over him suspended in the air.
We can see a connective thread to the previous card, one that is implying an awakening from an illusion. In the “present moment” position, we are in a process of turning our attention back to spirit, back to wisdom traditions maybe, but definitely back to ourselves. To view the swords as steps on a ladder and to rise above the illusion that we are caught in a battle with. Again, we are surrounded by abundance and support; we only need to open our eyes.
In the “near future” position, the 4 of Cups shows us a softer, more reflective environment, one where we find some relaxation and grounding. A tree is offering us support and is a visual symbol of inner strength. The sky is clear and the grass green. Once again, we have everything we need. As we meditate, albeit with some residue feelings of discomfort, a hand holding a cup magically appears in front of us.
Are we going to look? Will we be aware of it? Perhaps we thought we’d be in a different place or further along than we thought. We seem to have a slightly skewed perception of our reality, one that has only our perspective informing our logic. The “four” is about giving structure to things. Cups, with their watery emotive and flowing qualities don’t really like to be dammed up. Perhaps this is a moment to gain some traction on our emotions and to see that things are not as bad as they seem.
The figure here is seated higher up on the ground than the three cups. This suggests that it would be a good thing to get some leverage on our emotional landscape and to feel more stability and grounding, sitting closer to the earth as we are.
Open up, look around, take a deep breath, and notice what is given to us in this gentle unconditional hand. The opportunity presented here is truly priceless. Appreciate the beauty and perfection of life giving us what we need, again and again, taking care of us, acknowledging us, and filling our hearts with love. And what is that life? What are its properties, its sources, its essence, its magnitude, its nature, its unlimited potential, its unquantifiable undeniable presence…
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