May 31, 2010

Morgan's Tarot Monday

And there I was...SURROUNDED

Surrounded by the various and sometimes bizarre creatures of nature, I received a message. It said: "You and the earth are one".

In the center of this card is a large flower surrounded by other smaller flowers, how often as we go about our busy days do we stop and take notice or appreciate the sheer beauty of nature whether intricate in design or even a bit on the bizarre side ( duck billed platypus, I rest my case). Every living thing is a part of the Universe and therefor divine, the spirit moves through us all...plant, tree, flower, stone and human. 

Take time out and notice all that is in nature, how complete and perfect it is.

May 30, 2010

Porno Links And Idiots

There are jerks in this world and then there is the garbage minded idiots who have nothing better to do than deface honest folks' blogs. I have to now approve comments to my blog thanks to a spammer from Taiwan (specifically) who thought it would be fun to post porno links in my comments on over twenty posts. I apologize for this and I think I deleted all of them but in case not, just let me know and I will remove any that I did not catch.
If the individual whom did this to my page reads this...karma's gonna get your ass. Okay, thank you for your time and I apologize for the rant!

Serenity Sunday

Lavender Aromatherapy Bath Salts


4 cups Epsom salts
1 cup Celtic Sea Salt (course ground) *
5 drops red food coloring
5 drops blue food coloring
30 to 40 drops lavender essential oil (aromatherapy oil)
1 cup baking soda
3 Tablespoons dried lavender blossoms

* Dead Sea Salts would also be great, or any other quality sea salt. Do not use table salt, though, as it does not contain all of the beneficial minerals that sea salts have.

Preparation Instructions:

1. Take out a large metal or glass bowl (plastic and wood are too porous, and would absorb the scent of the essential oil), and a metal spoon (again, no wood or plastic). Pour in the Epsom salts and sea salts and mix well.

2. Let the five drops of red and five of blue food coloring fall spread across the surface of the salt mixture. Then do the same with the drops of lavender essential oil. Mix thoroughly. This can take a lot of stirring, since the food coloring and essential oils tend to want to clump together. Be persistent, and try to break up any clumps that you see. Once there are no longer any clumps of food coloring  you can generally count on the essential oils being well-mixed too.

3. Now add the cup of baking soda and mix well. The baking soda needs to be added last, because it works much better if the essential oils and food colorings are spread thin first (they would clump much worse if added to a mix with baking soda in it).

4. Finally, mix in the dried lavender blossoms. These are added last so that all of the mixing doesn't beat them up too much.

5. Put the bath salt mixture in an air-tight glass or metal container. You can use a plastic baggy, but be sure to discard it afterwards, because it will have absorbed some of the essential oils.

My List:

1.) My kids

2.) Laughter

3.) Sunbreaks

4.) Great friends

5.) Learning new things

6.) Soothing music

7.) Quiet time

8.) Pretty stones

9.) French fries from McDonald's

10.) Big Brother's, Big Sister's program

May 28, 2010

Elemental Dignities

Today I'm going to try something a little different, I've been looking at how Elemental Dignities figure into tarot readings and the depth that they can add when the cards just don't seem to make sense. This isn't a "Tarot Tuesday" post per se, but my attempts at reading dignities instead of traditional meanings.
I am struggling a bit with learning to read this way as I see the card's meanings first and it tends to get in the way of seeing dignities so, I thought if I do a Friday post, the information can creep into my brain as well as help you out there to learn right along with me.

So, with no further ado...Elemental dignities

 I had a wonderful conversation with Catherine Chapman, author of Beyond the Celtic Cross, secret techniques for taking tarot to an exciting new level  and owner of the Tarot Elements website in which we briefly discussed her new book and what Elemental Dignities were about. She was very kind to send me a copy of this book and I am so looking forward to getting it in the mail because it will give so much information on card counting and Elemental Dignities and how when applied to my readings...I'm pretty revved and ready to gain a whole new perspective on just how I interpret tarot.

The first thing I'd like to get into is the Major Arcana and what the Elemental Dignities are for each card, that will give me a firm foundation to continue into the Minor Arcana's elemental meanings and thus introduce the rules for each element and how they interact with each other. This week I'm going to go through my Majors in the Alchemical Tarot Renewed deck, it has the elemental symbols on the Minor Arcana which makes it so much easier to tell at just a glance without too much mental work from myself...(yes, I tend to be a bit lazy at times.)

Fool - Uranus/Air
Magician - Mercury/Air
High Priestess - Moon/Water
Empress - Venus/Earth
Emperor - Aries/Fire
Hierophant - Taurus/Earth
Lovers - Gemini/Air
Chariot - Cancer/Water
Strength- Leo/Fire
Hermit - Virgo/Earth
Wheel of Fortune - Jupiter/Fire
Justice - Libra/Air
Hanged Man - Neptune/Water
Death - Scorpio/Water
Temperance - Sagittarius/Fire
Devil - Capricorn/Earth
Tower - Mars/Fire
Star - Aquarius/Air
Moon - Pisces/Water
Sun - Sun/Fire
Judgment - Pluto/Fire
World - Saturn/Earth

The rules for Elemental Dignities are:

Active - Masculine - Energizing -Active
Fire - Wands...  Hot and Dry
Air - Swords...   Hot and Wet

Passive - Feminine - Inert/Nurturing - Passive
Water - Cups...   Cold and Wet
Earth - Pentacles...   Cold and Dry

Fire and Air are friendly and active and strengthen each other
Water and Earth are friendly and passive and strengthen each other
Fire and Water are enemies; they weaken each other
Air and Earth are enemies; they weaken each other
Fire and Earth are neutral and do not effect each other elementally
Water and Air are neutral and do not effect each other elementally

That having been stated, here's a fun exercise to help with how these Elements interact with each other:

Shuffle your deck and pull two cards, setting them side by side...what are the permutations (or possible actions) of the two cards... How do they act with each other, are they friendly and active or are they enemies and weaken each other... or do they not affect each other at all? Next Friday I will go further and add a third card which will add a new dimension to seeing these Elemental Dignities and permutations at work.

May 27, 2010

Plant Of The Week

Gerbera Daisy

Distinguished by large flowering heads that closely resemble those of sunflowers, gerbera daisies come in a vibrant rainbow of colors. Bright pink, snow white, sunny yellow, and ruby red are just a few of the gorgeous colors that these happy flowers boast.

The gerbera daisy was discovered in 1884 near Barberton, South Africa, by Scotsman Robert Jameson. While the flower’s scientific name, Gerbera jamesonii, recollects the name of its founder, the meaning of its common name draws from German naturalist Traugott Gerber. Breeding programs that began in England in 1890 enhanced the flower’s quality and color variations. The gerbera daisy’s popularity soon traveled to growers in the Netherlands which, along with Columbia, is the primary distributor of the flower’s cut version today. The gerbera currently ranks as the fifth most popular flower in the world behind the rose, carnation, chrysanthemum, and tulip.

The meanings of gerbera daisies stem from those attributed to the general daisy family. These meanings include innocence and purity, and daisies are also a classic symbol of beauty. However, the gerbera variety holds an added meaning of cheerfulness, which stems from the assortment of colors available. An assorted bouquet of gerbera daisies can lift the spirit and sending one is an ideal way to brighten someone’s day. The sheer multitude of available varieties has helped the gerbera daisy become a favorite choice for many different occasions – birthdays, get well, congratulations, thank you, and more.

There are many types of flowers which can help to express our thoughts and feelings for our loved ones, but the gerbera daisy and its meaning stand out as one of the most distinctly bright and merry. With its bold and striking appearance, the gerbera daisy has become the most highly-prized daisy variety. When you send gerbera daisies, know that these fresh flowers convey a deeply meaningful message and make a lively lasting impression.

Your Gerbera Daisy plant flowers best when it is growing in a small container and is slightly pot bound. Repot growing Gerbera Daisies in April. Use an open, free draining soil mix. When repotting ensure that the crown of the plant is above the level of the soil. Rot will occur if the crowns are buried or the drainage is poor. After repotting keep them in a shaded location until they're established.

The best position for growing Gerbera Daisies is in full sunlight to ensure maximum flower production. A shaded situation results in poor flowering. Keep your plant slightly moist at all times, especially when in bloom, but don't let the pot sit in water. In summer feed regularly every 2 weeks with a weak liquid fertilizer, and regularly pick off the dead flowers to promote further flowering. Indoor growing Gerbera Daisies can flower all year round. Also remove old leaves regularly to prevent fungus infections developing.

The optimal temperature for growing Gerbera Daisies is around 75 deg  but 61-70 deg   days, and 56-65 deg  nights is suitable. In Winter they are best kept above 50 deg F . In a greenhouse the minimum temperature is 40 deg. Freezing will kill the plant. From November to May, water only when the soil becomes fairly dry.

May 26, 2010

"What Is...?" Wednesday


Freemasonry calls itself the world's oldest and largest fraternity. Freemasonry and Masonry are interchangeable words for the same organization, which has its roots in the medieval trade guilds of stonemasons. In fact, the most widely used symbols of Freemasonry are the tools of the stonemason... a square and compass. The organization was formally created in London in 1717, and quickly spread to the American colonies and across Europe. Today, there are probably four to six million men in the fraternity worldwide.

The mission of Masonry is said to be: "To teach a man the duty he owes to God, his neighbor, and himself." Charity work and community involvement are important parts of Masonic life. Freemasonry is not affiliated with any religious group, but members are required to profess belief in a supreme being.

Masonic groups are called lodges, and the United Grand Lodge of England is the oldest body of Freemasonry. Membership is restricted to adult males, and lodges do not usually recruit members. Potential members must seek out a Mason or a Masonic lodge and apply to the organization (hence their slogan: "2B1ASK1").

Freemasonry has been decried as a secret society and even a political conspiracy or religious cult. But Masons believe that what little secrecy they have is simply so members of the fraternity can identify each other by things like handshakes and passwords. They state that the rituals of Masonic meetings are used to reinforce the central values of the organization, such as morality and belief in a supreme being. 

Famous Masons

Benjamin Franklin
Buffalo Bill Cody
Davey Crockett
Kit Carson
Warren Harding
Franklin Roosevelt
Harry Truman
Gerald Ford
Mark Twain
Wolfgang Mozart
Willie Mays
Sugar Ray Robinson
Cy Young

May 25, 2010

Happy World Tarot Day!


                                                                          The World

"Achieving balance, realizing goals and prospering, attainment of the heart's desire, fulfillment, peace of mind."

Today is World Tarot Day, a day celebrated May 25th every year. Den Elder, writer, Tarot Grandmaster and founder of The Church of Tarot, got the idea for World Tarot Day back in 2003, and it's been celebrated by many ever since. Tarot Readers, students, teachers and enthusiasts worldwide celebrate of the spirit of Tarot, and take a day out to promote the use of Tarot for the benefit and growth  and enrichment of the spiritual self.

It was twelve years ago when I got my first Tarot was the Elemental Tarot, not an easy read for someone just starting out and I indeed struggled to fully understand this deck so with time, it was relegated to a drawer until the day I ran into a gentleman that happened to be browsing the deck selection at my local Barnes and Noble bookstore. I was admiring the decks pondering which to buy when he advised me to choose the Rider Waite Tarot deck, I didn't care too much for the colors but I went on his recommendation and took my purchase to the register.

I worked with it for several months and used friends and family to try out my readings on, after a while, reading and understanding the Tarot came easier and easier. Once I had the basics down I began branching out to other style decks.

Eventually, I came across a book  called "Tarot Shadow Work: using the dark symbols to heal" by Christine Jette and that's when tarot began to enrich my life and solidify my spirituality. I come from a dysfunctional home, my father was a raging alcoholic and my mom was distant and very much co-dependent so I spent a lot of time with my grandparents (whom I miss very much.) Tarot taught me how to reach inside of my psyche and find those shadows that had grown from childhood into my adulthood and that continued to haunt me and how using the twenty-two Major Arcana could lead me onto a path where it was okay to be me.

It was like a light bulb turned on in my "Ah Ha!" moment for me...tarot had far more possibilities than giving advice or entertaining, it  brought to the surface that which was buried deep in my subconscious and brought it out into the light. I like to think that tarot helped make me who I am, it brings clarity and insight into this crazy world and how I fit into it and the peace of mind I so desperately sought for so long. It has taught me patience too, sometimes it's answers were vague but over time I realized that the tarot was quietly teaching me that sometimes waiting will bring about the situations and opportunities in life that I so desperately wanted.

I hope that with every Tarot Tuesday post that I do, I can inspire people to learn, investigate and appreciate the Tarot as much as I do. Now on to the rest of this post...

Using different decks according to the type of reading

I, myself, like to stick with one deck at a time for reading whether it be for questions concerning romance, jobs, spirituality or advice but I took a small poll on Twitter and asked the question "Do you use a specific deck for different readings or just the one that you are working with at that time?" and the answers were pretty split down the middle.

Some readers use a certain deck or decks for romantic issues like the Robin Wood Tarot and other folks use the deck that they are working with at that time... It pretty much just boils down to personal preference with each individual reader.  

~Good, versatile decks include The Robin Wood Tarot which utilizes wonderful colors in traditional visuals. 

The Sacred Circle Tarot (by Anna Franklin and Paul Mason), which follows Celtic and Pagan themes. 

The Witches Tarot (Ellen Cannon Reed and Martin Cannon) is a powerful deck with clear-cut Wiccan imagery. 

The Secrets Deck is romantic and darkly gothic in tone, while the charmingly earthy Fairy Tarot utilizes the German suits of Bells, Acorns, Leaves, and Hearts. 

The Celtic Tarot (G. Gaudenzi and S. Tenuta) is a modern rendition that includes motifs arranged by suits for myths; the Tuatha de Danann, who are the Sidhe or Fairy Folk of Ireland, heroes and history. 

With so many styles and designs to choose from, you are bound to find a deck that seems to speak to you, that reaches out to you. When you feel this sensation in the presence of a tarot deck, it is likely to make a good choice.

May 24, 2010

Morgan's Tarot Monday

Messages Monday

On Monday a message will come, revealing what your next move should be in carrying out the master plan. Your situation will become clearer.

Well, this is an interesting card! How funny, it's Monday too...I'm going to draw another card to see just what the message today is.....

Don't worry, you can DO NO WRONG

In the context of a reading, this card often means that you cannot fail in your present situation. Whatever you decide to do will benefit the project you have in mind.
The present confusion is part of a divine plan.

Wow...Ok, let's see here...This card is the message, alright...What I hear the cards saying is similar the the Six of Wands... recognition, a pat on the back...a small victory, recognition for a job well done. I have been trying to get my herb garden planted for a little over a week now but so far the weather has been less than cooperative...thunderstorms, hail and gusty winds, torrential rain... As it is, things are are not advancing as they should but maybe I need to just ride out the delays (even if it seems like the weather will not be sunny anytime soon) because I know I will get it done and it will turn out better than I had planned and I just may garner a compliment or two.

*Note to Self: Stay away from SuperCuts this week.

May 23, 2010

Serenity Sunday

Dream Pillows Dream pillows are small, decorative pillows filled with stuffing and a small amount of dried, fragrant herbs, such as lavender or rose petals, to promote restful sleep or love. Dream pillows were once called comfort pillows because of their use with the sick. Relaxing herbs, like lavender and chamomile, also helped crying babies get to sleep. The shamans of old believed dream pillows carried messages from the gods. These days, you can make a dream pillow for yourself or others and help everyone sleep and dream like a baby.

Dream Pillow

Combine the following in a bowl:

~ 1 cup mugwort
~ 1/2 cup rose petals
~ 1/2 cup german chamomile
~ 1/2 cup sweet hops
~ 1/3 cup lavender buds
~ 1/3 cup crushed catnip
~ 1/4 cup peppermint

Mix the ingredients together....make cloth bags from a 5 x 12 inch piece of material....fill the bag with your the top of the bag shut.

*Note: Please be careful and do not use any herb or oil that may be toxic, especially if you are giving this pillow to an older child or pregnant woman. If this is a gift for a child, make sure that they are old enough not to eat the contents.

My List:

1.) My kids

2.) Making new friends

3.) Herb gardening

4.) Laughter

5) Nine of Cups days

6.) Roses

7.) My sewing machine

8.) Flonase

9.) Old movies

10.) New tarot decks

May 20, 2010

Plant Of The Week

Mexican Heather Plant (Cuphea hyssopifolia)

The Mexican Heather (or False Heather) plant tends to grow around one foot in height but may be as tall as eighteen inches. In terms of spacing, anywhere from nine inches to a foot is average. Moreover, this beautiful plant blooms throughout the year making it a highly attractive plant year around. The booms are generally a shade of purple with the leaves being an evergreen, however, the flowers can also be a shade of pink or even white. Most people believe this plant looks very similar to a fern and therefore also makes an excellent houseplant.

Anyone wishing to plant the Mexican Heater plant should live in plant hardiness zones eight through eleven for best results. Be prepared to plant this floral in an area that has either full sun exposure or partial shade. For soil requirements, the ideal pH level is anywhere between 6.6 and 7.8; therefore, the plant prefers either neutral or slightly alkaline soil and does not tolerate acidity.

These plants are great when sowed directly into the ground after the last frost of the year, but also make an excellent indoors plant. Anyone planting this floral indoors should be sure to keep it in a sunny place in order to get the appropriate sun exposure needed for proper growth. Either way, the plant tends to bloom relatively early and can tolerate high temperatures as well as a considerate amount of drought. Be sure to water the plant frequently in extreme heat but avoid over watering. The plant will not be able to thrive in soggy soil. As with most plants, the Mexican Heather plant does best in well-drained soil.

One of the best features of this plant is the fact that pruning is rarely needed and therefore it is very low maintenance. Obviously it is best if you add fertilizer to the soil, specifically organic fertilizer.As an added bonus, the plant may attract beautiful creatures such as hummingbirds and butterflies.

The Mexican Heather plant is an excellent addition to either your landscape or for accenting your house indoors. Not only is the plant tolerant of high temperatures, but it actually does relatively well in periods of drought (when watered properly). Furthermore, this plant is very colorful adding shades of pink and purple flowers to your flowerbeds, porch decorations, as well as indoors. This fern-like plant is a low maintenance plant that is perfect for anyone wishing to add a splash of color indoors our out with evergreen foliage.

May 19, 2010

New Tabs

I'm not sure if you've noticed, but I'm in the process of adding some tabs to my page (just above this post.) They will be works in progress so some tabs may be blank until I hammer out just what I will be putting in them. As always, any helpful suggestions are appreciated as far as what you would like to see and layout content. Thank you for being patient and I'll be plugging away at this technical stuff!

"What Is...?" Wednesday

World Tarot Day

The 25th of May is rapidly approaching, did you know that it's also World Tarot Day? World Tarot Day was created in 2003 by CTGM Den Elders. It is supported by many major Tarot organizations, individuals, and websites across the globe.

The purpose of this day is:

"To promote the use of the Tarot tool across all human made
borders, be they political boundaries, misunderstandings of the
mind, or ignorance of the tool itself, for the benefit and growth
of the Spiritual Self."  

I know Tarot has enriched my life more than I can say and I love to share my knowledge with others, who know's, maybe I can inspire others to appreciate it as well. So, on the 25th, I will be blogging about different decks and how some readers use various decks for different types of readings...tune in! Stop by World tarot Day's website and enrich your life!

May 18, 2010

Tarot Tuesday

The Ten of Wands

"This Dryad bears the weight of what seems a miniature world upon her back. The support and welfare of the beings who inhabit those towers are hers to nourish with the flow of life's sap through her branches and leaves. Their soul is the song that spirals up through the foliage from her heart."

The Ten of Wands represents an honorable task, even though it's overbearing for this Dryad. Although it may seem like an overly stressful situation to bear, her commitment to it is a sign of hard work and virtue.

This card can also mean being burdened or oppressed by outside sources. Overworked, over tired, over stimulated. Having more on your plate  than you can handle. This is  a card of being overwhelmed, life and everything in it  adds weight. 

Sometimes the 10 of Wands indicates that you have been too successful and would be well-served by scaling back. You are may be tired or you've been working very hard, either personally or professionally and could use a break.  This could be an excellent time to give yourself one.

Spiritually speaking, don't be afraid to reach out for assistance if you need it. But you also have to learn when enough is enough, and when it is time to get out from under your burdens. The major theme here is to take good care of yourself, in every way, as to do so is especially critical now.

I'd like to give a shout out to Ft. Wainwright, Alaska....Hello everyone!

May 17, 2010

Morgan's Tarot Monday

Who is watching the cosmic drama?

Some answers: 
(a) You (b) Me (c) It hasn't started yet. (d) We (the gods such as the Greek gods on Olympus) invented the drama for kicks and then forgot who we were and started believing that it is real.

Like the "Who Am I?" and the "What Are You Feeling Now?" cards, this card is a meditative tool for increasing awareness.

Drama...In my little world, I like to avoid it like the plague but sometimes it just seems to creep in when it's least expected. I can remember vividly, a time when I was just seven or mom and I were in Sears I believe and I witnessed a kid around the same age having a tantrum to put all others to shame. I thought to myself, I bet if they could see themselves they would be terribly embarrassed! I know some adults act that way too.

Why don't the police have the authority to hand out  "Stupidity Tickets?"