The Moon: Waite’s Symbols

For the modern reader, it is usually the “deception” side of the Moon’s meaning that is given. Often, it’s a suggestion that one has to look again, preferably with better light; to recognize something that isn’t what it appears to be as it really is. To look beyond the mystery. But in Waite’s Moon, the mangy looking yellow wolf, quite singular looking, is yellow for a reason. Notice it is the same yellow as that of the moon. Waite has already told us that the intellectual light is a reflection and beyond it is mystery; it illuminates our animal nature. Therefore the message may be that when we reflect upon the thought of our animal natures using the reflected light of intellect… we see the wild nature of the wolf. I would add “reflection” to the standard “deception” meaning of this card. Thus, for example, in a questions concerning love and faithfulness, a reader might do well to ask the querent to use their intellect to answer the question as to whether the object of their affection’s domestic or wild side rules them. In doing so, the Moon card helps them find the answer to question inside themself.

Read more

Link: Is Tarot the Answer to Your Break With Spirituality?

Rewire.org had a good story yesterday on Cat Rocketship, an illustrator who has published the beautiful and interesting Skeleton Tarot Deck. I think it’s important to distinguish between traditional spirituality and modern spirituality to understand both this article, and the tarot. The artist states that tarot is “an invitation to explore whatever that spiritual, metaphorical, looking for patterns or listening-to-your-gut space is. It’s a tool I use to legitimize my intuition.” The article led me to consider Waite and his contemporaries. I think the late 19th century/early 20th century men and women who re-energized tarot were on the cusp of traditional spirituality and modern spirituality. Waite defined himself as a Christian mystic. He and his contemporaries were attempting to remodel the “temple” of the external religion they knew, Christianity, into two parts: external power, which they recognized as the pope, and an internal power, which was “secret,” “esoteric,” and hence something that was uniquely theirs in that they held its knowledge, too.

Read more