In 1784 in Paris, Benjamin Franklin presented a paper called “ “An Economical Project for Diminishing the Cost of Light”, suggesting that Parisians could economize candle usage by getting people out of bed earlier in the morning. As usual Franklin was ahead of his time. The world finally caught up to the idea of altering time to save energy in WW1.
The rationale is that adding an extra hour of light at the end of the day saves on using energy. FDR actually instituted daylight savings (DST) for the duration of WW2 …and called it ‘Wartime’ But several studies have suggested that Energy consumption actually increases during daylight savings mostly due to increased air conditioning use. We are in throes of global warming after all! Some people hate daylight savings (Haters!) and there is actually a website dedicated to eradicating it called standardtime.com. Why would anyone hate it? Maybe it’s because there is a significant increase in traffic accidents the Monday after the spring shift forward. But then there is an equal decrease in traffic accidents when we turn back the clocks in fall. Hmmm…Robberies fall by 7% the day of the spring shift, but heart attacks increase by 10%.
In the 1960s, the United States created the ‘Uniform Time Act’ which created the time zones (can you imagine living without time zones?) and allowed states to exempt themselves from DST. At present only Hawaii and Arizona have exempted themselves. If you go to the Hoover Dam, Arizona is on one side of the dam and Nevada on the other. When I visited, their clocks were set an hour apart. I kept walking back and forth between the hour difference. It felt so arbitrary.
As we transition out of winter and into spring it is time to seriously throw off anything that is weighing us down! Especially anything that has been causing heartache. It may be hard, but honesty and direct communication can help speed up this process. In the year of the Dog, the only currency is honesty. You may need to tell someone how you feel, even if you are afraid of the outcome. Most importantly we need to be totally honest with ourselves if we want to move through to the other side of an emotionally difficult situation. We cannot control another person or many external situations, but we can control ourselves. We can choose to spend our energy healing and progressing in order to fully embrace life!! If you let it, April can be a turning point in your life, where you choose new possibilities for emotional and cosmic connection.
10 Wands x 3 Swords
May continues the theme of freedom! After the intense energy of April, asking us to be honest about what needs to be healed and released, the new energies say take a risk! Risk is what it takes to grow. There is a special bent to this months message: the biggest risk of all may be to call it a day and keep moving. There is such a huge emphasis on 'follow-through' in our culture. I think it is because in capitalism our worth is tied to our production value. But if you find yourself in a situation (career, relationship, project, program, religion, JOB) that is at odds with your true authentic self, you may need to risk what others may think of you or some level of security to be in alignment with yourself.
The Fool x 7 Swords
June will be serving up a nice big helping of romance! If you are interested in a relationship, the Two of Cups rules partnerships and the combining of heart energy between two people. The energy that flows between two people is special and different from the energy that flows between three or more. If you have been looking for love June should be a lucky month. If you are already in a relationship this influence will add a magical element to your day to day life with each
There is another energy hanging around as well, having to do with starting a new project and allowing yourself to be a beginner. Sometimes this feels scary because we get judged in this society and our ego usually feels safer being a 'know it all'. Don't let the fear of looking foolish stop you from starting something new.
Page of Pentacles x 2 of Cups
I believe in magic! I have seen miracles, synchronicities, successful outcomes to spell work, and True Love!! That is all ‘blow your hair back’ magic. This article is about another kind of magic…I call it practical magic.
What is that?
It’s goal setting for something that will have a big effect on different aspects of your life. It is the opposite of just getting chores done (unless that fits into a bigger goal). So many people spend their energy working to earn money to pay bills and endlessly consume (media, clothing, meals,). If we aren’t careful we can get caught in this whirlpool of energy exchange and never actually end up swimming anywhere.
Practical magic is about being a creator rather than a consumer. Capitalist society forms us into consumers, but we can take our energy and magical souls back from the machine.
Here are some examples of practical magic:
*Track your money for a month and see where it goes. I did this and discovered I was spending $300 !! dollars per month on coffee and lunch. Now I make my lunch and coffee and have devised an envelope system to fund my dreams with that $3,600 I was spending mindlessly on consumption. Here is a link to a video I made about it. I call this Magical Budgeting.
*Learn a Language. It will save your brain and create a bridge to another culture’s reality. There are words that don’t exist in our language that exist in other languages.
*Learn an art form. Spend time creating rather than consuming and maybe even make money at it down the road.
So what is on your To-Do list? Is it a mundane list of chores? Or is it an ever increasing set of skills and experiences? Our time on this planet is short and our energy is limited. Where are you directing yours?
Years ago I hitchhiked to Prague with a girlfriend of mine. It was the summer after the end of communism and I was searching for my Czech friend who lived and studied there. The only phone number I had for him was a dorm phone that serviced two whole floors. This was before cell phones, and in fact his dorm still had a babushka (who only spoke Czech) who used a switch board to connect you to the floor. Anyway, I called and called and there was no answer. I went to the dorm and it was empty due to summer vacation. I called his family but they only spoke Czech or Russian and I only spoke English and German. After four days in Prague my friend and I gave up trying to find him and decided to have one last picnic up at the Pražský hrad before we took an evening train to Budapest. We hopped on a tram we thought was heading up to the castle. One of us suddenly realized that not only were we going in the wrong direction, but we were on the wrong train! We turned to exit the back door and there was my Czech friend that we had been looking for for four days. That random (shocking!) meeting on the wrong train set a series of events in motion that ended up being deeply significant.
The psychotherapist Jung described Synchronicity as the simultaneous occurrence of events (or coincidences) which apparently have no clear cause, but are deeply meaningful. Everyone has had these type of experiences. One of the re-occurring themes my clients come to me about is synchronistic events and their meaning. These events can be as simple as seeing a number over and over again in a short time period, or a synchronistic happening that changes the trajectory of their life. They want to know if it ‘real’ and what it means. The answer is YES, synchronicity is real. It cannot be proven by scientific method, though, only by its meaning to the person involved. Our mechanistic, reductionist culture will call synchronicity a ‘coincidence’ and discount the meaning being experienced by the person. But reality is bigger than mere ‘coincidence’ and ‘scientific’ proof. If an occurrence means something to you, it is real. Terence McKenna used the term 'Cosmic giggle' to mean "a randomly roving zone of synchronicity and statistical anomaly. Should you be caught up in it, it will turn reality on its head. It is objective and subjective, simultaneously 'really there' and yet somehow is sustained by imagination and expectation."
Synchronicity shows up as a sign or omen and oftentimes it appears in multiples. Usually several events will happen in a short amount of time drawing the attention of the person experiencing them. It’s like a cosmic wake up call. The universe is saying ‘Hey! Life is spiritual. You are part of a bigger whole. You aren’t just the roles you are playing now.” Even if it is just seeing the same numbers over and over, I believe that is the universe telling us that we are not alone and there is meaning in everything.
I would be interested in hearing your stories of synchronicity. Write them in the comments below!!
Peace in the New Year. xo
WELCOME TO THE YEAR OF THE EARTH DOG
In Chinese Astrology 'dog' people are considered to be honest, sensitive, loyal and giving. Years ruled by the dog tend to have a social justice bent. Often times these years usher in a sea-change based around bringing people and organizations to justice. All of us, regardless of our sign, should be very careful with our actions and words this year! The law of threes will be in full swing. Honesty and Integrity will bring you blessings, but the opposite will also be true.
I have given an overview of how this Earth Dog year will affect each Chinese zodiac animal. Click here to find out your sign.
Rats will have mixed luck in 2018. Good outcomes to situations can happen, but you'll have to work for them! This will be a great year to be resourceful and do some soul searching and healing. Risk taking may lead down the wrong road. In love, single Rats may be considering getting more serious with someone. Luck will come to Rats this year who choose to be more straightforward and honest with their communication. Being vulnerable with the right person will bring great rewards. Rats like to lay low and do things their own way...but the year of the dog is going to challenge this.
Overall, 2018 should be a good year for the Ox. There will be a lot of help and support from others in the next twelve months IF the Ox doesn't demand perfection from or is unduly hard on others. Sugar will get better results than the stick. This is true in Career and Love. The Ox will need to give first to receive. Compassion will clear all roads this year! Ox people are hard workers and Dogs appreciate this, so this year you will be extra rewarded for effort.
2018 should be a favorable year for the Tiger! The year of the Dog is usually a lucky love year for this sign...sometimes too lucky! Don't take another's love for granted or you will lose it. Working hard this year will provide and excellent basis for future success...sacrifices made will be rewarded later. You may give someone a second chance who has earned it and be pleasantly surprised. Forgive yourself if need be and lighten up. 2018 should Rock!
This year is a great time to get physical! It will bring you multiple benefits, enriching you spiritually, emotionally and physically. Dog years like perseverance and reward it. Integrity in relationships is crucial in 2018, as the law of threes will be in full swing. Make sure your heart is pure and you give as much as you recieve. Watch out for someone who may hold you back from your best life (especially your love life!) because they are afraid of losing you. 2018 should be a lot less stressful than 2017.
2018 will be a year of well-earned rewards for Dragons. It is not the year to take financial risks. Keep a budget and live within your means. Being frugal can be fun! Being humble and empathetic in the year of the Dog will bring you great results in your relationships. Any sort of self-aggrandizement will backfire! Most Dragons will learn some valuable life lessons this year. Operate out of impeccable Integrity and you will draw luck to yourself.
Spontaneity will bring joy in 2018. Your motto should be "Carpe Diem". Dog years put an emphasis on Integrity, and it will be important that you look closely at your relationships this year. It may be necessary to distance yourself from friends or family members who are draining your energy or don't have your best interests at heart. Authenticity will help attract a partner or deepen a committed relationship. Snakes like to do things on their own terms, but dogs like community spririt. Compromise may be asked for this year in order to succeed.
Horses should thrive in the year of the Dog! These two signs are very compatible so obstacles should be at a minimum. Appreciate what you have and do things you like, or you might get bored! No need to stir up drama this year, as it will have very negative consequences. Love should be easy in 2018, whether you are single or committed.
Goats are going to be sensitive in the year of the Dog. This has positive and negative sides to it. Creativity and connection with others will be blessed. On the other hand, Goats may feel like their freedom is being curtailed. Patience and self-care will go far this year!Committed sheep should have a pleasant year, but single people will have to be discerning. There may be plenty of fish, but chances are you may throw most of them back in dating pool.
Things will feel safe and sound for the Monkey this year...but many will have mixed feelings about that! Monkeys like getting into 'monkey business', but that could really get them into trouble in 2018. Have fun but don't tempt fate, it will not be kind. Taking responsibility for actions is going to be a central theme for this sign, as there won't be any 'get out of jail free' cards this year.
Roosters love attention, but this year it might be in short supply. Don't worry, there will be other roads of fulfillment. The problem is, dog years don't reward or care about the limelight. Your poetic words and dramatic flourishes just won't be as effective this year, but your sincere and empathetic side will still draw good vibes your way. Listening will definitely go a lot farther in love than wowing someone with your fantastic knowledge base in 2018.
Overall this should be an excellent year for those of you born in the year of the Dog.* It is your personal New Year and the start of a new 12 year cycle. Many Dogs have had a rough couple years and this should lighten up significantly in 2018. The culmination of introspection and hard work will start paying off now. If you are single, a significant relationship could start in the next 12 months. Dogs may get extra attention this year so be discriminating. If committed, the energies of renewal may send some waves of change through your relationship.
*In older traditions a person in the year of their animal sign offended the god of ageing, Tai Sui. To protect against bad luck, wear red and don't face the northwest.
2018 will be a great community building year. Invest energy into the relationships that already support you and reach out to new people as well. Others is where you luck lies this year, but you don't want to get involved in other people's drama! This year is a good love luck year for your sign, especially the women. Reamaining calm and taking everything in stride will bring good fortune. It's what you want to do anyway, but your good nature may be tested this year.
Wow! The New Year transitions with the energy of the Star. What a blessing. On the darkest night of the month, the stars shine their brightest. The new moon is getting ready to grow, along with our hopes and dreams.
The Star brings us grace and helps turn situations around. Out of nowhere a sense of hope and a new positive direction appear. We cannot earn grace; it is just given to us. The star is the vessel in which grace is delivered. It can appear as an opportunity, a mentor, an earthly angel or a new sense of well being.
The star is an extremely auspicious Energy! It helps wash away negative situations and bolsters positive ones. Often times the Star card appears after a stormy or difficult time period, offering hope and optimism for the future. It brings a time of beauty, flowering and joy. The Star can bring a sense of being watched over and of deeper connection to others. Coincidences abound, but everything seems to happen for a reason.
Stars have always been used as guiding lights, helping humans navigate through darkness to safety. You now have this gentle, caring energy entering your life. The clearer your vision of the future, the quicker your wishes will be granted.
Following our own Inner Light will guide us to new and wonderful places. February will be a great time to research, visualize, ponder, discover, and plan. It is important to make space for these things. A retreat is a great way to do this. It is not time to take action. Decisions should be made after the influence of the Hermit leaves. This does not have to be a heavy time period, it can be pleasant! This time period tends to be challenging only if you have been on the run from yourself and have a hard time sitting with yourself. But you can’t run forever and the Hermit offers you peace if you search for truth.
In a relationship reading, the Hermit says each person needs to individuate in order to strengthen the union. It is not an ending card.This month you may decide to be alone rather than in an unfulfilling relationship.
It's time to take a risk for your happiness! As nature and animals start to awaken in spring, so does our adventurous spirit. It's time to put the plans you came up with during February's hermiting into action! The Fool lives in the moment, acts on impulse and moves into the future without a guaranteed outcome. There is a spring in her step as she starts out on a new journey. This energy is fabulous for making radical change in your life. It helps you break out of stagnant situations and propel you into a new reality.
The Fool hates the daily grind. Under the Fool’s influence mundane reality is a bore and adventure and excitement call. The lure of the road and people and places unknown stir something deep in our soul. The need for freedom and a belief in the universe overpower other needs. Usually these time periods are fun and lighthearted for us, but others may have a hard time understanding our decisions. Their reactions to our seemingly radical actions have little effect on us and so we are perceived as self-centered or being ‘foolish’. Oh well, it's no one else's life but our own. It is our journey to start!
Years ago, when my daughter was four, we spent part of our summer in Lithuania. The city of Vilnius was beautiful and fascinating. Historically, it had nine city gates, but the Russians destroyed all but one in the early 1800s. The remaining gate is called 'The Gate of Dawn' and that is where the miracle working 'Black Madonna' lives. She is called 'Our Lady of the Gate of Dawn' or Aušros Vartų Dievo Motina in Lithuanian. The stairs leading up to the chapel were narrow and made of marble and deeply grooved by the years of pilgrims coming to worship her. My daughter was obsessed with 'our lady' and asked to see the 'Black 'Oodana' everyday!
There are at least 500 Black Madonnas in Europe. They are shrouded in mystery and many have pilgrims that visit them for their miracle working abilities. They are either carved or painted (mostly between the 11th and 13th centuries) and have a dark complexion. Many people believe that these are not just representations of the Virgin Mary, but actually veiled figures of much older goddesses. Most often they say that she is actually the Egyptian goddess Isis (sometimes with baby Horus). But many are thought to be connected to other ancient religions as they are located at the former shrines of pagan goddesses such as Diana, Artemis and Cybele.
Some of the Black Madonnas have taken on the soot of votive candles over the years, but many more were actually carved out of dark materials or painted to have a dark complexion. This makes sense if they are really connected to the ancient goddesses of Africa and the Mediterranean. I place my picture of 'Our Lady of the Gate of Dawn' in a prominent place on my altar...but my catholic mom hangs hers on the wall. The deep, mysterious feminine force of the Black Madonnas transcend religion.
Keywords: Good times, Common cause, Comrades, Fighting the 'Man', Friendship, First Stage of a Love Relationship
The Three of Cups is generally a joyful card. It depicts coming together with others to collaborate, connect and celebrate. It has deeper undertones that deal with fighting a common cause and coming through an ordeal with others by your side. This energy is going to be ruling the month of October...so don't isolate...celebrate! If the political climate is getting you down, join with others to take action so you don't feel alone. Mother earth has been angry lately and there is much healing and helping to be done. Get involved in helping others...in turn you will help yourself. The Three of Cups can be a great relationship card. If you are single you may meet someone who shares your values. If partnered expect a new level of warmth and connection. The Three of Cups says 'We are all in this together and LOVE conquers all.'
3 of Cups
Keywords: Excitement, Things falling into place, Movement, Action, Obstacles removed, 'Be careful what you wish for'
We should all have a bit of a break this month...a little sprinkling of grace to help raise our morale! If things have been feeling like an uphill struggle for awhile, take heart that some good times and well earned rewards should roll in this month.
The Eight of Wands is an exciting, dynamic card signifying situations swiftly manifesting or resolving. Normally this is a very positive development that comes after a time period of waiting or needing to overcome many hurdles. It has that great feeling of after being shut out, you are now all in. But there is the catch! It implies commitment, or responsibility or finality. Once you attain what you have been pursuing, nothing will be the same and there is no turning back.
It is important to know what your motivations are when you are craving or pursuing something.
8 of Wands
Keywords: Feeling Stagnant, Shifting your perspective, Working things out
After the action of the last few months, December might feel like a bit of a wet blanket. Don't worry. There are ways to make space for fun and light even if life is feeling heavy. Be around people that love and support you ... and be loving and supportive with others!
Your perspective is going to be very important this month.
"...What happens is of little significance compared with the stories we tell ourselves about what happens. Events matter little, only stories of events affect us.”
― Rabih Alameddine When we feel trapped...we can do several things to free ourselves. We can make new decisions and change our circumstance. If we truly can't change our circumstance we can change how we see ourselves in our life. Lots of times we feel stuck when we have done all we can and the shift is taking much longer than we like. Just remember that the universe always rewards effort eventually...but it operates on its own timeline! Sometimes it takes a while for all the components to rearrange to gift you what you want.
A clear vision of what you want and where you are going can go a long way in helping you get out of a stagnant time period. If you have clarity of direction, than it is easier to take steps to reach your goal. It is really hard for the universe to give you what you want if you don't know what you want!!!!
And finally, just remember that everything is temporary. That includes difficulties and happier times. Onward, people! We must keep rolling.
8 of swords x 4 of Cups x 3 Pentacles
Give more to receive more. The open hand is the precursor to the closed hand. The energy of July is full of compassion and generosity. Make time to nurture the members of the 'family' you have created and you will be rewarded three times over with their love and affection. This month the nature spirits are calling! Make time to be in mother nature ( the ultimate Queen of Pentacles!) and connect with the healingness of lakes and oceans and sand and earth and plants! Queens rule consciousness...so be conscious (in a fun way...not a punishing way) with what you are nurturing your body with. Go through your cupboards and throw out dead, garbage food. Fill your Kitchen with fresh, healthy, real food. Our bodies are connected to our emotions directly, yet subtly. Taking care of our body temple will lift our spirits and make us feel more connected to life. This summer many of us may finally get a life changing understanding of a situation that has been occupying our thoughts for a very long time.
Queen of Pentacles
A lot of emotions will be floating around in August. This is neither good nor bad, we just want to acknowledge what is going on inside of us and listen to that and not ignore our inner voice. It is really important when this influence is strong that we are not ignoring our needs in taking care of others that we love. Love is a feeling, but more importantly love is action. It is a verb, not only an emotion. Sometimes we get lost in our love feelings and need to evaluate the quality ( and equality) of a relationship by the actions of the other person, not the feelings we have for them. The total eclipse on the 21st will possibly bring up something that has been buried for a long time. Shine your love light on this buried treasure and heal it or send it on its way!
Queen of Cups
After the nebulous energy of August, September rolls in with the feel good card of the earth suit. It is a good time to enjoy the moment because you have earned it. Life shouldn't just be a series of challenges, there is also a time for enjoying the fruits of your labor...and September is the time! The Nine of Pentacles delivers a time of uplifting and very positive vibes. There is a sense of security and self-fulfillment that is present whether you are single or in a committed relationship. This energy helps couples be aware of and release patterns of co-dependence. We are all our own little universe and connection is much more interesting when we have our own interests and points of view. Carpe Diem, People!
Nine of Pentacles
If you are feeling like you are being blocked by obstacle after obstacle and your life is stagnating, here is a little spell to help move things along.
What you will need:
Basil essential oil
Small piece of paper
Step One: Clear out and scrub clean your front entryway. Make sure your door opens all the way. Wash the floor with water with a few drops of basil oil and salt added or sprinkle salt on carpet and vacuum it up. When you pour the dirty water down the drain or throw out your vacuum bag, imagine your obstacle going with it. Having a clear entryway allows fresh energies and opportunities into your life.
Step two: Rub some basil oil onto your purple candle and light it. Place it on your altar or a table. Sit down with your pen and paper and get centered.
Step three: Get extremely clear on what needs to be moved out of the way and what your manifestation goal is. Remember the law of 3s – anything you put out to the universe comes back threefold. Make sure your desire harms no one or removes their personal will.
Step 4: Write this vision down on one side of the paper. On the other side sketch a picture of an open road. Rub some basil oil on the paper and fold it up, with the sketch side out.
Step 5: Visualize rolling down an open road and removing your obstacle(s) and moving past them. Carry your folded paper with you and read your vision everyday along with this visualization until things start moving again. When your goal is realized either bury the paper, burn it or throw it into moving water. Make sure to say thank you to the universe!
Hello! I am Xtina, a psychic tarot reader based in the Pacific Northwest. 'Tarot Communique' is a space for my musings, inspirations and whatever else that comes up that I'd like to share! xo
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