The Weekend Tarot Reading — Sunday, May 12, 2013

By Sarah Taylor

This week, we have the tarot version of a carwash: something that has gone as far as it can in its current form enters a process of integration, and emerges, purged and revivified, in the landscape of the heart.

Death, Strength, Knight of Cups -- RWS Tarot deck.
Death, Strength, Knight of Cups from the Rider-Waite Smith Tarot deck, created by A E Waite and illustrated by Pamela Colman Smith. Click on the image for a larger version.

Looking at the two outer cards, there is an unmistakable mirroring in the figures of Death and the Knight of Cups. On the left, the figure of Death moves into the reading, its horse walking in the direction of the ensuing cards. On the right, both the Knight and the horse hold the same positions as their card XIII counterparts, they, too, heading in a left-to-right direction.

They, however, have passed through the jaws of Strength, and, while they have been transformed and the landscape around them has been cleared, whatever it is that the Knight offers his cup to is unknown. Its presence is hinted; it is yet to come into the picture.

But first, back to the Death card. While Strength and the Knight have two figures set against comparatively simple backgrounds, the Death card is full of detail and symbolism. I won’t go into that detail save to say this: there is a call to pay due reverence to a passing, which makes space for something new. “The King is dead. Long live the King.”

The Death card corresponds to the sign of Scorpio, and scorpions are adept at the transition from ending to beginning: they have to shed their skins in order to grow. We, too, find ourselves in an experience called life, which regularly demands that we let go of what no longer nourishes us — which in all probability is holding us back — so that we can expand into something greater. If we don’t heed the call and work with this natural metamorphosis, it can limit us to the point of pain. Therein lies the rub: what we tend to fear and resist so much — change — is, in actuality, the only thing that makes sense. Life is change. Without death in all of its forms, life cannot exist. All things make way for their successors.

The presence of the Death card as the first in this week’s spread suggests that this process of metamorphosis is already underway. It leads on nicely from last week’s reading where The Moon was the central card: if you look at the Death card, at the right-hand side in the centre, you will see the two towers that were in the background in The Moon. This time, however, instead of the Moon between them, we now have the Sun, implying that Death heralds a new dawn along with a good-bye to something that has already had its day.

What survives passes into the energies of the next two cards, mediated by the maiden in Strength, who has matured from the young girl in Death. This maturation mirrors the process that we undergo when we begin to embody our physicality and sexuality, which we learn can co-exist with our more mannered natures, understanding that they are integral and valuable parts of who we are.

Without a connection to a mature aspect of the feminine, we cannot hope to have a balanced encounter with our masculine; without a connection to the mature aspect of ourselves as sacred beings, we cannot hope to have a balanced encounter with the profane. The beauty has become a match for the beast, and it is through their co-operative presence in us that the old is transformed into the new.

And what is now starting out? That would be the Knight, the man who would become king. The black armour of Death has been shed, and in its place is a watery-blue-sheened shell, a flowing tunic suggestive of a certain softness — an openness — of the new. Unlike the figure of Death who looks at us — we who cannot escape our own transformation — the Knight now looks forward. It is time to move into something different.

The Knight of Cups is the archetypal knight in shining armour. He is the romantic idealist; his is the domain of feeling; he is on a quest for love. Specifically, the presence of the Knight describes our own quest for immersion in the seas of no-thought, where we are washed by heart-derived sensation and which point the way to realms beneath the surface of consciousness that, when warmed, rise to meet us.

It is worth keeping in mind, though, that this marks a beginning, not an end. There is room for the evolution of something that grows from our acceptance of ourselves as both human and animal; our crusading zeal will be put to the test when we step into the world.

Remember: the elemental correspondence of the Knight of Cups is the mental aspect of emotions. The Knight of Cups thinks he knows about love. Soon enough, he will have the opportunity to find out what love really is.

Astrology/Elemental correspondences: Death (Scorpio), Strength (Leo), Knight of Cups (the airy aspect of water)

If you want to experiment with tarot cards and don’t have any, we provide a free tarot spread generator using the Celtic Wings spread, which is based on the traditional Celtic Cross spread. This article explains how to use the spread.

5 thoughts on “The Weekend Tarot Reading — Sunday, May 12, 2013”

  1. Revisiting the eclipse cycle readings and marveling at how congruent the energies are. Green Star Gazer, I acknowledge your vision, the pain associated, and the Hope that becomes visible, like a distant rising star. Car wash indeed, or tidal wave.

    He is about to learn what Love really is. Are we all?

  2. “Specifically, the presence of the Knight describes our own quest for immersion in the seas of no-thought, where we are washed by heart-derived sensation and which point the way to realms beneath the surface of consciousness that, when warmed, rise to meet us”. Yes! Thank you so much for another spectacular reading, dear Sarah, a compass for the dark wood I’m still walking through.

  3. Sara this is a most profound and astonishing reading, especially given the Eclipse cycle we are in the middle of traversing. Thank you.

    As a Scorpio who is feeling the immense pressure of Saturn “weighing” in these days in our sign/frequency, I’m feeling the Deathing process very acutely these days. I have been in such grief and sorrow over the changes I am seeing in the planet these days. I can feel the transformation happening in the subtle dimensions as plants and animals try to adapt and adjust to the climate changes that are now a reality. I can feel already such an immense sense of loss as many of the trees, plants, and animals that are here now (and that I love deeply) will be unable to continue. They will die. Already on the energetic planes I can sense this shift is beginning to happen.

    I’ve also received messages that the Deva Beings (energy beings who work with the plants and animals on the energetic levels) are beginning to create a repository of sorts where the energetic matrices of the plants and animals destined for extinction will be kept. The repositories are held on the energetic (or Quantum) planes but also proximate to the locations where the species are living now. The message is that if the climate change cannot be reversed and extinctions are inevitable, the Devas will withdraw the energy “blueprints” from the dying species and hold them in stasis for as long as it takes until the planet can be restored… which may be well into the Age of Capricorn…a long time from now.

    I received this information during the eclipse and have had a very difficult time processing the Death aspects of this message. Your reading, and your very well-written commentary helps me to let go and just stop resisting Death and simply grieve… knowing that Strength (The Devas and the Fully Empowered Feminine ) are now in place and at the center of this process, making the necessary adjustments and wielding whatever resources are required to support this transformation. The Knight, with his Holy Grail Cup is bearing the Chalice of the Divine Feminine and Her ability to restore the landscape and our proper place in it will eventually come to pass, I can see that now from this reading. I can feel hope, even if it takes a long time to pass, restoration will eventually come. That knowing helps me to embrace the Death cycle that will now be happening and just let go and stop resisting it or judging it. (I can feel Pluto/Last Judgement lurking so close by in this reading even if it is not showing itself directly)

    I see the Knight as the representation of the Divine Masculine finally finding his true purpose… not the old Patriarchy coming round for a second time, but a new humility guided by a sense of true understanding and awakened maturing. He at last can arrive and take up his position and his calling, something the Masculine desperately needs. He needs to fulfill his mission. He is the Grail guardian and transporter. He uses his masculine energies in alignment with the Goddess…not against her. He serves her because when he does, the Earth can come back into Harmony and balance and be restored. When he is in service to the Goddess, she is freed up to do what she needs to do and he is helping her by being Her Champion. All is in Right Alignment.

    I’ve always felt that the Knight of Cups is very similar to the Chariot. Both Archetypes are armored, but are holding a vision, so to speak, both are in motion with a message to transmit/give and both are representatives of the evolved masculine. The Chariot is perhaps a good deal more nuanced yet masterful than the Knight of Cups, but the Grail that the Knight carries and protects is a very powerful talisman and cannot be overlooked.

    Thank you so much for this reading… it helps more than you know. 🙂

  4. I saw a film called “Occupy Love” last night that presented the wave of revolutions starting with the Arab Spring and culminating in Occupy through 2011 as a movement of love rising to meet the dying empire of domination and hate. As you say with this knight, he’s full of ideas about love but has yet to experience its reality. In this reading it looks like a rebirth after passing through an initiation involving the woman with the big cat. We’re all so used to dominator culture at this point we don’t know what it’s like to live in a culture based in love and respect. Having passed through the initiation of Strength perhaps love is strong enough to stand up to the beast. It’s billions strong now, flowing into uncharted territory.

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