the long and rambly – fate, free will, and destiny

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Three factors shape our lives: fate, destiny, and free will. Fate is that which we cannot altar. Destiny is the unique gift that lies potentially within each of us. Free will is about the choices we make for ourselves. –pulled in bits from The Wildwood Tarot Book

Puzzling pieces.. this is how I’ve felt about my workings and such this past year-ish. It has been sometimes confusing, sometimes ill fitting, sometimes falling perfect, and sometimes just a bit of wtf is this supposed to be? A few days past setting the altar I did a long reading, choosing a new layout – Fate, Free Will, and Destiny, found in the Wildwood book. I put forth one single word which I choose not to share. In the first instant of looking at this reading, I had the feeling of things falling into place.. some of which I instantly recognized, some reassuring, and one that made me a bit hesitant. All together they gave me a feeling of place and the next morning I woke up feeling I was finally over some things and ready to move on. The healing had started.

The issue – the journey, placed at Samhain, associated with the waning moon and the elements of Water and Earth. It is the time of the dead.

..hello there stag who insisted to be moved to my altar, even though I wasn’t ready to work with you yet.. this card felt like a big thing.. a big thing that’s niggling me.. I know where I want to start, I know it’s tied to many things.. the path chosen, the feeling of being stripped down, the ancestors.. but still.. niggling.. in the “roots and branches” of the  book’s description it lists “the washer at the ford and the dark mother”.. one day when WB was over and while pulling bits out, I had two misplaced cards found – the lady of shadows and the crone.. I immediately thought of these.

The solitary horned skull of a reindeer lies in the forest, picked clean to the bone by a circling flock of ravens.. one great raven sits beside it, the flesh of the reindeer in its beak. As both guardian and guide, it’s unblinking eye is all-seeing and unafraid.. on one level, death does translate a simple expression of change but, however profound, extreme and cleansing that change may be, that reading simply does not deal with the core experience and meaning.. once the dead were not feared. They were seen as guardians.. holders of wisdom.. as a metaphor for cyclic change, the Journey is a required experience on the passage around the Wheel..

Reaction – the Shaman, at the hub of the wheel, opposite the seer, located in the quarter representing Air and embodies aspects of magic, protection, and insight

The Shaman looks from the card with eyes that are both clear and open and yet there is something ancient and profound within his steady gaze. He is wrapped in bearskin that is adorned with Paleolithic paintings of animal spirits.. on the ground before him are laid objects that represent the four elements of the world.. representing energies and levels of consciousness that defy human rationalization.. this is a gateway card.. a new spiritual chapter emerges.

What is inescapable – seven of vessels, mourning

..I saw the lines in the mirror long ago.. what I saw there prompted my pledge that summer.. letting go and being at peace with that past.. I am working on it..

A human skull painted with an array of designs including spirals, zigzags, and wavy lines, lies at the foot of a tree. Around it are scattered typical grave goods.. this is a time to honor what is dead and mourn for what has gone. Learn the lesson of letting go by offering thanks for cherished memories and being at peace with the past..

The changes – the sun of life, connected to the green man and green woman, associated with the element of fire, the period of noon, and the gateway of the mind

..for some reason this felt very halfway point, and then I read..

Viewed as if from the center of the summer Wildwood, the Sun of Life is surrounded by fecundity and growth.. the promise of the sun’s return after its sojourn below the horizon during the winter months.. the next step in the awareness of the universal mind.. beckons you to see beyond the noise and clatter of human reality and become aware of the vastness..

The choice – the pole star, placed at Imbolc, associated with the new moon and universal lore and stands between the elements of Earth and Air

..this sung for me because of the airy altar which I had planned to take down at Imbolc, although it fell earlier, just one of those funny things I guess considering this Imbolc fell around the new moon and the new altar reads of Earth..

The blessing of the Pole Star radiates to the Earth across the abyss and reminds us that the same stuff of creation that fuels and binds these mighty sentinels of the night sky burns within us.. symbolizes universal law, higher spiritual knowledge, and power.. the power of universal lore is at work here, either within the individual or permeating a web of circumstance that will bring profound change and a new spiritual hope.. of prophetic guidance and inspirational knowledge has rising and will guide you on your forthcoming journey through the forest..

Wildcard – queen of stones, bear, approaching midwinter

.. bear feels very feminine to me, maybe because the one called that rests on my altar now feels very feminine.. like a great mother/elder presence.. so much of this one speaks..

The ancient ancestor of the modern bear, the cave bear hibernated in caves during the cold northern winter. Neanderthals buried their skulls here and even shared their caves during some periods.. learning to manage things wisely, putting the family first, refusing to nurture.. if you practice a craft or design, be expansive and liberal..

.. and so there, the long and wordy.. all of those which moved about me and of those who came to rest on my altar made their way to speak through the cards.. the niggling of the journey awaits but quite frankly, I am just ready to get to the warmth of that halfway point waiting right around the bend.

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