Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Tarot: Dream a dream and work

After reading zombie stories, it was inevitable they would creep, or rather shamble, into my dreams, waking me up with a pounding pulse and a need to get away. The disorientation lasted a few seconds before sleep claimed me again, adding weights to my eyelids, body and limbs so that I was dragged back into the dream, but I was prepared for them. I changed the dream, shifting people and monsters, going down different roads and heading for more familiar territory until the dream was behind me. It's called lucid dreaming.

Dreaming can be a release, for writers a way to work out plot points and get closer to their characters (whether they want to or not) and a way for the unconscious mind to surface and pick up threads from every part of the conscious mind and memories to weave a fantastic tapestry of people, places and events that can heal, relax and scare the bejeezus out of the dreamer.

And dreams are a way to reach for more in the waking life. Dreams are also a place to start, but not a place to linger or end.

4 of Cups

Asleep under a tree, the young man is dreaming, completely unaware of the full cups beside him or the full cup right in front of him. He's more intent on his dream than on what he already has or is given. The squirrel in the tree and the mouse in the grass are more curious about what's in the cups than the dreamer. The mouse and squirrel follow their instincts, but the dreamer is locked in his dream, dreaming his life away.

The young man is a romantic who is looking for something better to come down the road toward him or to find something better over the next hill, around the next corner, instead of seeing what is right in front of him. The Four of Cups symbolizes a quest for order and stability in a perfect world; it does not exist. The Four of Cups shows a disdain for reality, someone who is unwilling to see the gifts he has in plenty and more gifts offered, but keeps looking for something more, the ideal, ignoring the happiness he has and could have because he cannot see the difference the connection between his gifts and realities. There are no guarantees and expecting or demanding a guarantee will guarantee that what is right in front of you will disappear either because they were ignored or because someone with sense will pick them up and take them away.


Blind Justice has no power to harm, but holds the balance of karma in her own hands. Justice stands on the fulcrum between past and present, a guide, not an active force.

Past actions determine the present, but present actions can change the future. You cannot change the past, but you can change course and walk into a brighter future by what is decided at this moment, and this moment, and the next moment. The future is changeable. The past is fixed.

Look to the past to understand what created the present situations and take responsibility for your actions. Use that knowledge to make better choices for a better future. Learn from the errors and make choices based on the lessons of the past to realize and make a happier future a reality.

Ace of Pentacles

The Ace of Pentacles is the gift of resources: money, raw materials or time. Use skill and determination to make use of the available resources given and be grateful. Do not give in to the temptation to under value or squander the resources. Some resources are best used when they're offered. Don't hoard them or save them for a rainy day or when you have more time. There is no time like now.

Resources and gifts may seem mundane or not a true gift of the universe, but there are no coincidences and no accidents. As Einstein said, "God does not place dice with the Universe." The Ace of Pentacles offers a straight forward message: the riches of life are yours if you have the good sense to take them and use them. Don't waste time or money or the raw materials of talent or the earth because you only waste your own happiness. Remember the lesson of the weasel, take what's offered and don't look back.

* * *

My mother has always called me a dreamer and my quick response was that without dreamers she would still be huddled in a freezing cave gnawing raw meat from a sated lion's kill terrified of the snarls and growls just outside the cave entrance. Okay, it's a little more descriptive than I used to say, but not by much.

Yes, I'm a dreamer, but, even when it takes me a little while, I do make my dreams come true. I've walked the wrong paths, looking for something better, when I had everything I needed within my grasp. Luckily, I figured it out before I died.

* * *

Daria is a fortunate woman. She met an English duke who fell in love with her and offered her the world, and his heart. She cared for him deeply, but wasn't sure if he was the one. Still, she said yes to his proposal and followed him to his estate in England in the heart of the country where legends of Merlin are still told.

A great oak tree of massive size, centuries old, dominates the landscape. It is said that Merlin still sleeps within and waits for a woman willing to sacrifice everything to free him.

Daria and her duke have an argument and, as she has so many times in the past when happiness was within her grasp, she considers breaking off the engagement. Still angry and in tears, she takes a walk and ends up under Merlin's oak where she decides to sit and figure things out. Falling asleep, dreams of Merlin creep into her imagination and whisper that she is the woman who can set him free.

Awakened by workmen laughing and joking about cutting into Merlin's heart and seeing if the old oak bleeds, Daria begs them to wait until word can be sent to the duke. Daria refuses to leave the tree and convinces the foreman to send one of his men to find the duke. As she waits, it occurs to her that breaking off the engagement would seal the tree's doom and ruin any chance to free Merlin, so when the duke arrives she agrees to patch things up if he will give her the old oak as a wedding gift.

In order to save the oak, she must sacrifice her dreams and marry the duke, giving up any chance to free Merlin right away.

How do you think the story will end?

While you ponder the story and your own dreams, consider returning next week to see what stories the tarot cards will reveal. Until then, don't just dream it, be it.

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