Today I decided not to pull a Daily Card in favour of doing a reading. And as I am working my way through the The Alternative Tarot Course, created by the beautiful Beth from Little Read Tarot, I decided that I would do my third weekly reading :). Chapter 3 of the course was all about getting in touch with the Major Arcana! The Majors represent the larger aspects of our lives, the big changes that send us on a tailspin, those moments when we feel we are trapped in a situation, but also the times where we come to terms with our inner truth and learn that we in fact have everything we need to achieve what it is we want. It’s been a really good week and I may post a bit about some of the exercises at some point, but today is all about the reading for this chapter, entitled “Courtroom Drama”. This is a Majors only spread originally created by the French Tarotist Oswald Wirth in the 1920s. In this spread we imagine we are in a Courtroom and our situation is being discussed and judged by the ‘Majors’. It is a five position spread, where the fifth position is deciphered using numerology, an addition which I really liked :). You lay the first four cards out first, which are representative of:
Position 1: “In your favour” – What is ‘for’ your situation. A person, energy or influence that may be of help. Your key strength.
Position 2: “Against” – The negatives. Things working against you in your situation and hindering your progress.
Position 3: “The Judge” – This is the card that looks through the evidence presented by cards 1 and 2 and try’s to clarify where you stand, giving advice as to how to proceed.
Position 4: “Decision/Sentence” – The outcome. The lesson to be learned.
Once these are laid you add up the numbers on cards 1-4 and then if they are over 22 reduce them by adding the two numbers together. For example, in my reading the total was 36 – 3+6=9. So my centre card was The Hermit. The centre card is Position 5 in the spread but it is read first. This is because this card is what everything else depends upon and hence is the most important part of the reading! Now this spread can obviously be used for many different questions but in this instance Beth asked us to ask the cards a specific question, “How can I become a truly brilliant tarot reader?”
So now that you know the basic outline, here is my Courtroom Drama 🙂
- Position 5 – Centre
The first thing I saw was introspection and a search to find my guiding light. Becoming a brilliant Tarot Reader is dependant upon me leaving behind the deceptive appearance of all that is outward and looking inward. Escaping the hold of societies forced wants and facades, which in their very nature are transient. Because The Hermit appeared first in Position 1, I decided I would use The Hermit from my Thoth deck purely for the visual. But this actually opened me up to interpreting the card in another way which I’m grateful for!
In the Thoth card we see that The Hermit has journeyed to the darkest regions of his Shadow Side to find this guiding light. This is represented by the Cerberus, the three-headed guide to Hades. Two of his heads face forward, urging us to move into this new phase of our lives, but one head still faces backward. I think this is representative of the fact that in order to move forward into this new phase, we must endeavour to resolve all that is unresolved in our past. Also to help convince us that everything of importance from that time has concluded. I think I subconsciously understood this aspect of The Hermit before seeing this, but in other interpretations I felt that the introspective journey was more of a retreat from outside influences and less of a journey into a side of ourselves we may not wish to see. So I am really happy to have found that in the card today!
Another thing I really like in this representation is that the guiding light of inner clarity, represented by the Lantern, is beginning to spread out geometrically over the card. This to me shows that when we go inward, and discover our truth, this guiding light will become what fulfils us. I think this is important for me in this Centre Position. In order for me to become the best Tarot Reader I can, I need to discover my inner guiding light. And once that has occurred I will in turn be able to share my experience of change, my new sense of reality with those who wish to go on this quest for themselves. That and The Hermit is often seen as a trusted teacher, someone people can go to for wise counsel. So if this is a hint as to what I may grow into in the future, well count me blessed 🙂
- Position 1 – In my favour
I love that my Defence Attorney here is The Hermit. Jokingly I could say that everything depends upon (Centre Position) whether or not I have a good Lawyer :P.
But, getting into the reading more seriously, I would have to say that The Hermit here is saying that a key strength of mine that has previously been hidden may come to the forefront after retreating from the distractions of the outside world. I’ve been feeling for some time that I want to get away, and like the figure on this card, simply immerse myself in a new world, a place where I can be truly alone with my thoughts. He has travelled so high above the fog of humanity, and is so close to learning his truth, a nose breadth away in fact! So, The Hermit here in this position may be saying that this is in fact a wise decision. But, until I can accomplish this, I think I should try my best to reflect upon my own inner wisdom, and like The Hermit begin to remove myself from the outward superficiality of society in general. From now on I will strive to only enter into relationships if they promise to be close and deep, providing the mental and spiritual stimulation I desire, and hopefully through this find friendships with people on a similar life path.
I also think that an acceptance of loneliness is an important lesson here. I don’t need to concern myself with those who do not understand me, and I shall strive to be able to relax within a loving, universal solidarity. And if becoming comfortable with being alone is going to help me be a better Tarot Reader, well I am more than happy to start now!
- Position 2 – Against
Connecting this to the card on the left I would say that I have to be careful that I am not deceived by what I discover on this inward journey. That I must remain cautious and keep a strong connection to my heart, for what does The Moon represent but a situation of uncertainty that is fraught with danger or deception. Of course I’m going with the darker side of The Moon here, but I think it fits being in the position it is in. Now while The Moon is a symbol of intuition, which I definitely think is important to get in touch with to become a good reader, I think here it is saying that I must make sure I do not get lost in the light of the moon when I journey there for answers. It’s ok to go and retrieve the information, but I must make sure I bring it back in one piece. I will not be of use to anyone as a reader who can’t tell the difference between reality and illusion, so I must endeavour to keep my eyes wide open. I think it’s also saying to be aware of the masks people wear. Sometimes it is too hard to be upfront and honest about where you are at, and much easier to gloss over the pain with something else. I think it is important for a Reader to be able to see to the truth of what their querent is asking, especially when it is hidden behind a mask of fear.
- Position 3 – The Judge
I decided that I would write this as if Strength was talking to me directly. I picture him as the voice of Aslan from ‘The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe’ :P.
“Adam, my young one, on this deep inward journey you are about to embark upon, you must make sure to stay in touch with your inner strength. Be patient with yourself, for it will take time. You will not become a brilliant Tarot Reader over night, but if you are persistent with a quiet determination anything is possible! Be compassionate towards yourself, the journey to discover your guiding light may be frightening, and being a solo pilgrimage you must look after yourself, for no one else will be able to do this for you.
You have a gallant spirit, and the strength of your heart is without parallel, enjoy the time alone, for when you get in touch with your inner beacon, you will also add buttress to all the forms of strength hidden within you! Be wary of illusion however, for on this journey you may feel bewildered and lose direction! If this happens know that you have it within yourself to hold fast and see through the distortions. Also, before I go, if I can give you one last word of advice, once you have retrieved your inner-light, be like the bamboo, don’t boast and shout your strength to the world, stay flexible in all situations, especially on this inner journey, and you will become the brilliant Tarot Reader I know you can be!”
- Position 4 – Decision/Sentence
Ah The Magician, how happy I am to see this card here :). I think this suggests that if I follow the advice of the cards I will become in touch with not only my inner-guide, but experience a harmonic relationship with the four elements! Like The Magician I will be able to help create change in the world, and use my knowledge and skill with the Tarot to help others achieve their goals. This makes me really happy. Along with learning more about myself, one of the biggest reasons I started studying the Tarot was to provide those around me with a way of delving deeper into themselves, and helping them with the problems life throws at us. So seeing the possibility that I may become like The Magician and be able to do this makes me very happy indeed. And as a final word of advice, I would read this as, “strive to be aware of the unseen around you, all the elements are available to you, so use them and your intentions to create what it is you want. You have the power, use it to help those in need!”
This was such a great spread, and I find it quite interesting that the Majors I drew were ones who had not only all come up once in my Daily Draws for October, but two of them came up twice (The Moon and The Hermit) and Strength came up three times, not including it’s appearance in the ‘Focus’ position of the New Years Spread I did on my birthday!! To me this strengthens the meaning in this spread. These are important cards for me at this moment in my life, and I think they came up here to tell me that there is a high possibility that by following their guidance I truly will become a great Tarot Reader!! Well at least I hope so :).
Until next time, live well and be happy xx