opportunity

In the last reading the Pages and Knights warned me what to look out for, but they are also very good at delivering news about messages that may be coming.   This reading will examine what those messages might be and from whom?

The Layout

This card uses the Page and Knight of each suit, the Fool 0 and the World X

Shuffle the cards, concentrating on the question.  When you feel the cards are done, deal them out one at a time until you turn over the Fool or the World then stop.

The Question: What message will I receive?

The Spread

  1. Page Swords
  2. Knight Swords
  3. XXI World

The Answer

A clear and definitive message is being sent right now that will renew your enthusiasm and motivation.

Wow, that would be nice!

The Cards

Page of Swords

My Take*: Young woman, strong eyes, fancy hat.  armored yet beautiful, hard yet refined.

The Card: Curious and fervently seeking knowledge yet scattered and unfocused.  An idea in its infancy.  Focus your energy on gaining knowledge about the situation through messages containing information.

Knight of Swords

My Take*: The knights horse is a pegasus taking flight.  This is echoed through the wings on his helmet.  This card is swift and a little reckless.

The Card: The winged horse represents the flight of the mind and the potential of the minds capabilities.   Intensely focused on the goal, so much so that tolerance and patience go out the window.  This is a card of action.  Patience and determined focus are needed for success.

XXI World

My Take: The coming together of all the elements to bring about the conclusion of something.  The culmination of lessons learned leading to a new cycle.

The Card: The end and the beginning.  We see things as they are.  Enlightenment.   Transformation. Wholeness.  Being aware of your limitations.

Analysis

This book is fun and silly and sometimes enlightening in its reading, but lets not kid ourselves that it is the most serious or thorough of interpretations.

I do find these cards very interesting though.  If you look at them as a classic three card spread with past present and future represented then they are very encouraging.    I have always know there was great potential for me, but have never been able to focus enough to fully explore it.  I have been scattered and distracted.

All the work I have been doing has seemed to come together around this ability to focus and the meaning behind why I can’t and what I can do to reprogram my way of thinking about my goals and success and/or failure.  The combination of my work at therapy and the upcoming Forum Advanced Course give me ample opportunity to improve this situation dramatically.

The goal is wholeness and transformation.  The presence of the World card leads me to believe that this goal is a real possibility.

* When I am first learning a card, the my take section is only based on what I can see in the card and not based in any foundation or previous knowledge.  Do not use these descriptions as being anywhere near the truth.

Last week I spent three very long grueling days transforming my life.  It may seem a lot to ask to completely transform your life in three measly days, but it happened.  They said to commit to the process and it would happen, and it did.

I saw some amazing things.   I watched men open up and accept their vulnerabilities even though they were completely closed off when they arrived and women face their fears and insecurities head on with bravery and grace.  I have never been part of something so intimate with a group of 130 people, all of whom supported and surrounded each other with love through a very trying couple of days.

I went to the Landmark Forum really unsure of what it was I was supposed to gain from it.  A lot of people go to have breakthroughs in their relationships with parents, children, friends and/or spouses or with their health or business.  I needed all of those things and so didn’t enter with a specific goal in mind.  I just knew that my life wasn’t working the way it was and after seeing the change in a friend of mine who recently went through it, I knew I wanted some of whatever he was taking.

What I ended up learning is that all those areas of my life that needed changing were all tied up in the same underlying issues.  I needed to take responsibility for my own life.  I had blamed my parents for everything bad that had ever happened to me and even for my persistent unhappiness.  This impacted every area of my life and held me back from getting anything done.  I learned to differentiate between the actual events that happened and my interpretations and stories that I built up in my head as a result.

It’s not that bad things didn’t happen, they did.  But my parents were just doing the best they could with what they had to work with.  They had their own shit to deal with and their own demons haunting them.   But, the feelings of not being worthy and not being good enough were completely separate and only the stories that I had created.  This realization alone lifted 10 tons off me.  I didn’t have to let my stories control me any longer.

This was a lot easier said than done for me.   Let me just say before I go any further that I had a certain type of experience and everyone else there had their own experience.  Please don’t be scared off by the following information.  I am an extreme case, not everyone had the issues to deal with that I did or the built up emotions to clear.  Each experience is as different as the individual.

OK, here we go.  I started crying Friday morning and didn’t stop until late Saturday afternoon.  I kept apologizing and laughing with the people around me because I couldn’t get the tears to stop, they just ran in a steady stream down my face no matter what I did.  I would get a small break and then she would mention the word empowerment or opportunity and there they would go again.  I never dreamed it would be so difficult for me to grasp onto the possibility that I deserved to be a powerful person with unlimited possibilities.  My mind and body fought this process tooth and nail, yet I persevered.

But after speaking with my Mom on Saturday afternoon, I got up and shared this very powerful conversation with the group.  I was almost giddy and no longer crying.   By taking responsibility for my own life and releasing the anger and resentment, I had cleared up a ton of space in my life that was formerly filled with nothing but garbage.

I even came home with the full intention of calling my dad, who I haven’t spoken to in 17 years.  A lot of work finally got me to a point that I have forgiven him and realize that his actions can no longer have any impact on my life.  I even think I might want to have some sort of relationship with him, if that is possible.

So I woke up Sunday morning and got sick three times, then I dialed the phone with the full intention of speaking to him when he picked up the phone.  I was going to tell him that I am doing great and that I accept him for who he is and forgive him.  I was also going to take responsibility for the fact that I made some decisions I am not that proud of and didn’t treat my parents very well, but that all that is in the past I am hoping that we can start over and get to know each other.

Unfortunately, the phone was disconnected.  God, I was pissed.   All these years and all this pain and I finally get to this point in my life and he wasn’t there.   I didn’t need to puke any more, but was I mad.  I marched in there and got up and told what had happened.  Our leader Angie did an amazing job of bringing me down and reminding me that what happened was the phone was disconnected and that was it.  ” He wasn’t there” and “I have spent so much of my life wasting time getting to this moment” was all my stories.

For all I know, he got a cell phone or didn’t pay his phone bill.  I really don’t know anything about his situation, but I do know that I called and intended to talk to him and that means that I am officially “in the game” and she congratulated me on that.  She also mentioned that I needed to stop holding all my emotional stuff in my physical body and that I might be amazed what physical problems I have disappear now.  Hmm, haven’t I heard that somewhere before?

That was when it happened for me, my transformation.   I have spent my entire life completely wrapped up in my stories.  So much so that they appeared to be all there was.    I was terrified if I even let up for a second that I would just crumble into little pieces on the floor and there would be nothing left of me.  But that was just another story,  I am better than ever and still me, just a little more emotionally light.

When I got home on Sunday night, I was bigger than life.  I almost felt high, ready to conquer the world.  Just sitting with my husband caused him to panic a little.  It was just me with him, fully  myself and present and that is surely something he is not used and maybe has never even seen with me.

At the Landmark Forum, I created the possibility for my self and my life of being whole and present and responsible for my life and my actions.  In doing so, things started happening right away.  At dinner on Sunday night with my cohorts at the Forum, I was fully present and confident when speaking about my business, free of thoughts of not being good enough or worthy of success, and almost everyone at the table asked me for my information (definitely time to order business cards).  On the way home that night, I was telling the young woman I drove home about the experience and she jumped in with the information that her boss needed some advice on his website.   The following day, I responded to two inquiries for small websites and received an email from a designer friend of mine asking if I wanted to work on a project with her.

Even if none of these interactions turns into anything my outlook on my business has changed completely, and this wasn’t even something I was looking for out of attending this workshop.   I know now that I have something good to offer and that a potential client choosing to do business somewhere else doesn’t mean I’m a failure.  It just means they decided to go with somebody else.  I just have to put myself out there and be present and genuine in the moment.  And of course build kick ass websites.

This week I have been with my children fully and openly, I think for the first time ever.   I was so concerned with my own stuff that I don’t really think that I could be present to their lives.  I realized that they are not extensions or reflections of me or my parenting.  They are their own little beings and my job isn’t to mold them to force them to be a certain way, but to be with them and stand up for them and be present, I mean really present to their unfolding and growth.   This is a pretty powerful thing and has changed the way I will interact with my children forever.  The whole first day, Ada kept looking at me like an alien had taken over her mother.  The second day, she just hugged me and hugged me and hugged me.   The tears come just thinking about it.

Now, a week later, life has returned to somewhat normal and I sit comfortably in this warm pool of uncertainty, something that would have thrown me into a panic attack just a week ago.   Clearing up all this garbage from the past leaves a lot of clarity and even more empty space, something a little unnerving at first.   What happens next is yet to be seen, but I look forward to tomorrow and for now that is enough.

With all that said, there were a few things about the Landmark Forum that bothered me a bit.  They get really into selling your friends on the forum.  They do this in a fashion that makes you think that this is not what they are doing, but they are.  I think that the final night would have been a lot more meaningful and even a more powerful sales tool if they had concentrated more on what people got out of it and less on why your guests should sign up for it.

I knew this was coming, although it was more than I even thought it would be, and prepped my guests for it.  One of the issues I had was that I never asked for help or support and therefore made it virtually impossible for anyone to feel like they could support me in a meaningful way.  So, it was important for me to ask for my mom and friends to be there for me and for me it was nothing more than that.  Of course, I feel that they may get something out of taking the workshop, but they are grown ups and fully capable to discerning that for themselves.

I have read a lot of “cult” comments on the internet and people saying it was fun, but not life changing and people put off by the enthusiasm of the staff, but I too am a grown up and capable of thinking for myself and making my own decisions and my advice would be like with most things in life, you take what you need and leave what you don’t.  Like I mentioned at the beginning, there were all kinds of people there from high school students to stay at home moms, from teachers to CEOs, everyone there for there own reasons and getting only what they got from it.

I found it really interesting that a lot of the concepts were similar to ideas I have been getting from all different directions.   Lately it seems that everywhere I look, even in completely unrelated places, the same information is coming to me.   For me that means that I should be listening.

My experience was very intense and extremely rewarding.  I have a new outlook on life and a whole lot less crap to carry around with me.  All in all a good thing and I am looking forward to the advanced course in October.

Landmark Education

This is a classic Celtic cross spread using the major arcana and wands cards we have been using so far to get a little more detail about the state of my career.

The Layout

The Celtic cross layout is one of the most classic and popular layouts. It generally give you a good overview of the past, present, future and how you can expect things to go.

Here is the general layout

       3         10
 5     1     6    9
       2          8
       4          7

Shuffle the wands and the major arcana cards separately while asking your question.

Deal the top two major arcana cards into positions one and two. These two cards are a cover and cross duo (this is really hard to represent without creating a separate image), but use your imagination.

Deal the top four wands into positions 3 thru 6.

Shuffle the remaining cards together, again asking your question, until the cards are finished and then deal the top four cards into positions 7 thru 10.

Here is some detail about what each position means.

1. Covers You – The current situation
2. Crosses You – The challenge you will need to confront and overcome
3. Above You – The best you can hope for, given the current conditions
4. Below You – The past foundation that needs to be considered
5. Behind You – Something that just happened the is influencing the situation
6. Before You – Something that is just about to happen that is influencing the situation
7. Who You Are
8. Who they want you to be – represents all the people around you and what they want for you.
9. What You Want
10. What you get – The end result, the answer.

The Question: What can I expect from my career this year?

The Spread

1. Covers You – IV Emperor
2. Crosses You – XI Justice
3. Above You – III Wands
4. Below You – X Wands
5. Behind You – IV Wands
6. Before You – VIII Wands
7. Who You Are – V Wands
8. Who They Want You to Be – II Priestess
9. What You Want – VII Chariot
10. What You Get – VI Wands

The Answer

Right now you are dealing with strong personalities, high expectations and power plays. Be strong and resolved. You need to make your own decisions. Your challenge is to set the right priorities and then go for it.

Success lies in joint undertakings. You must overcome past defeats and get out from under the things that burden you. Just recently, you cemented a deal. Just coming up, you are tying up loose ends.

You are the one on the front lines, you have good skills. Others want you to give input and read their minds. You want to be recognized. You have the opportunity for career advancement.

The Cards

IV Emperor – Covers You (the current situation)

My take: Order, ruling over things. Things are laid out before you in a straightforward manner.

The card: Fathering, law and order, social responsibility, power and structure. You have great power, use it carefully and thoughtfully. Be careful not to misuse it as you may be seen as tyrannical.

XI Justice – Crosses You (the challenge you must face and overcome)

My take: The scales are balanced. The skies are dark, she is blinded and armored. Whatever is in the scales shines brightly. You may not see what you are seeking, but all is as it should be?

The card: Fairness, being too judgmental, fighting for those less fortunate. The blindness indicates an unbiased approach to situation.

III Wands – Above You (the most you can hope for if circumstances don’t change)

My take: A man sits waiting on a rock as a ship sails in through the sky. The man is naked and vulnerable, yet surrounded by three rods, protectively. Something speeds toward you. You have the strength to handle it, but you must be patient.

The card: Waiting for signs of success and a return of your investment of energy. Beware not to become to wrapped up in initial success. There is still much work to do. The man is naked to show the purity of his intentions. You have chosen the path and set the wheels in motion and now must wait to see what happens next.

X Wands – Below You (past foundation)

My take: A naked man is crouched, 10 rods hovering above him. Very strong force of power. A triangle is at the top of the card, shining light down . His head is bowed as if in prayer or submission. Surrendering to situation, knowing you have done what you can and now it must play out on it’s own.

The card: The man is weighed down by the obstacles, problems and crumbling of his idea. This plan may have run it’s course and it is now time to look forward to new ideas. Beware of becoming a slave to your own ambition.

IV Wands – Behind You (just happened)

My take: The door is ajar, seen through the woods. Four towering wands surround the door. A fiercely bright light is just beyond the door. It’s so close you can taste it. You have all the strength you need, just reach our and take what’s yours.

The card: Stability, solid foundation. All plans and good ideas must eventually be acted upon or they just disappear. It is time to take action.

VIII Wands – Before You (coming soon)

My take: Eight wands fly through the air along with 8 doves. Things are in motion. Spirits are high and all is flowing well.

The card: High energy. Everything is clicking in high gear. You are inspired and can see your path clearly.

V Wands – Who you are

My take: Battle, Men with wands fight, stand guarded and ready against attack. You are armed and ready for the battle ahead.

The Card: There are several possible meanings to this card depending on the context. Most obvious is that there is a battle. Others include that the group is armed and ready to fight together, or they are ready to work creatively together. Each man is isolated from the rest of the group, indicating that the group is either fighting or working together from their own isolation.

II Priestess – What you are to others.

My take: She is mystical, psychic. She looks for higher meaning in things and finds comfort in the mystery of life.

The Card: The ability to tap into the subconscious and yet stay grounded in the present. It’s a delicate balance. A withdraw from the norm of the day to day.

VIII Chariot – What You Want

My take: This is a swift moving card. There is a man in a chariot with two white steeds and they are riding a wave. There is a huge steel contraption in the background reminiscent of an oil rig. This grounds the card and takes away some of the otherworldly qualities. I feels of being swept forward and taken for a ride. But, you must make sure to remain grounded in real and secure things.

The Card: Confidence, willpower, pride, arrogance, youthful energy, anger, insecurity. The path has been contemplated and chosen and now it is time to set forth. The road is not set in stone and you must keep your eye on the ball and not be distracted by the emotional forces acting here. With the right focus and dedication, you have the willpower, energy and confidence to fully succeed. The oil rig represents the beginnings of creating our mental framework, of pulling up ideas and thoughts from our subconscious and beginning to turn those into tangible attainable products of the real world.

VI Wands – What You Get – Then end result or answer

My take: A man stands on a balcony, 5 wands holding him up, his arms held up in victory, a bright light shining from the top of the remaining wand, which he holds firmly. This is reminiscent or roman times. This man looks like a leader and definitely a victor.

The card: Victory, plain and simple. A moment of elation and enjoyment of your accomplishment is in order. Just be aware that this feeling is temporary and the wheel of fortune will soon begin to move again.

Reading Analysis

Well, it seems like things are going to start moving and that success is definately possible and even probable. There is a group aspect to what I will be doing, but maybe not directly. It indicates that the decision has been made and now it is time to move on it. This still confuses me as I don’t know what decision has been made. A couple of things have happened over the last week or so. A friend of mine mentioned a part time web gig for a friend of hers that does cranial sacrum work and then I got this sinus infection (ouch and sucky) and did a bunch of research on holistic ways of approaching sinus infections, and from several other directions I am getting bombarded by the alternative medicine thing. I have a horticulture degree and herbology and holistic medicine have always been great interests of mine. It is worth looking into and exploring, but I can hardly say that I know for sure about that. If I know anything for sure, it is that I would really like to be a yoga instructor and that I don’t want to do the web thing forever. With the yoga thing, i am a good year away from even having that discussion with my instructor so I can’t see that this is it. The only thing I can think of is that the events of the last week or so have put something I’m not quite aware of into motion. I’m going with that.