Roswila's Dream & Poetry Realm

SEE ALSO: TRYING TO HOLD A BOX OF LIGHT (photos, realistic to abstract)

Friday, October 13, 2006


[Two of Swords from The Thoth Tarot]

I’ve posted here about using the Tarot to explore night dreams. In this post I will talk about an experience I had many years ago of Tarot card images within a dream. All the Tarot numbers, names and meanings that the dream attributes to the cards are those actually assigned to The Tarot cards mentioned.


I see a black and white line drawing Tarot Major, quite oversized. It is a female figure. She is facing me, seated on a throne, wearing a crown. I am sure she is III, The Empress. I very briefly note that her crown is shaped like the roman numeral two: II.

I note with great interest the many groups of three objects on the card. Three clouds, three flowers, and so on. I become excited as I note 4, then 5, and then 6 triplicities. It becomes important to find 9 triplicities in all. I briefly assume that this is because it will mean "wisdom," i.e. IX, The Hermit card. I am delighted when I count my ninth triplicity.

Then I look at the bottom of the card and am shocked to see "II, The High Priestess." I remember the roman numeral two I had taken brief note of in Her crown. But how can She be II with all these threes? Then I am aware of a dynamic relationship between the Seven of Swords and this II/III. I realize that what the figure on the Rider/ Waite/ Smith deck Seven of Swords is carrying away are two (II) plus three (III), equaling five swords, leaving the Two of Swords. [On the actual card a figure is tip-toeing away with five swords, leaving two behind in a tent.] Which means that when the confusion of II and III is taken away I am left with a "balance of mind and emotion" – a traditional meaning for the Two of Swords, and "Peace" – the name of the Two of Swords in The Thoth deck.


I promptly think of the III/Empress as "imagination" – Creative Imagination is attributed to III, and II/High Priestess as "memory" – a traditional meaning for II/High Priestess. So there is much fear that imagination and memory have been conflated or confused with each other. It is this fear and confusion causing the many negative thoughts I have about myself – Seven of Swords, for which one meaning is enervating negativity. When I clear up these fears and confusion, I will find peace and balance – at least for a time. :-)


It would take a book to fully explain the issues toward which this dream directed my attention. It will have to suffice here that at the time of this dream, I was in psychotherapy for abuse in childhood. I had just realized that the therapist was manipulating my memories within light trance work – i.e., guided visualizations used for "memory recovery." (Or what became known at the time in the psychotherapy community as inculcating "false memories.") What these Tarot images did at that time by showing up in a dream was to clearly identify an important area of inquiry for me. I needed to be concerned with the relationship between imagination and memory.

These Tarot dream images also pointed to a much yearned for outcome: the last image in the dream was a feeling of gentle, pale blue peace – the color of the central flower on The Thoth deck's Two of Swords (graphic at top of post).


This dream work has proven to be more accurate than I thought at the time. I hasten to admit that though the feeling of peace at the end of the dream still alludes me for the most part, having untangled imagination and memory made a huge difference in my life.

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Resource: Dreams As Exceptional Human Experience, by Montague Ullman, M.D.; IMHO, Dr. Ullman is one of the bright lights of the dream field.

‘til next time, keep dreaming,


[aka: Patricia Kelly]

****If you wish to copy or use any of my writing or poems, please email me for permission (under “View my complete profile”)****My other blog: ROSWILA’S TAROT GALLERY & JOURNAL.

Monday, October 09, 2006

REVIEW OF PAGAN EVERY DAY, by Barbara Ardinger

"Finding the Extraordinary in Our Ordinary Lives"
by Barbara Ardinger
Red Wheel/Weiser, LLC
ISBN-10: 1-57863-332-X

When I sat down today, October 9, to write this review I thought I'd check again to see what Ardinger says about it. Here's only a portion of what she says:

"Rome honored Felicitas, the goddess of good fortune, on October 9. What good fortune have you recently had? What has happened in your life that is felicitous? Make a point to honor Felicitas by celebrating every little good thing you can think of ...."

Well, this book is certainly a not-so-little good thing I celebrate, as I knew it had to be. I've read most of Ardinger's books to date and been edified and entertained by them all. I find Ardinger's books refreshing, too, as they are written with economy and clarity. No fuss, no bother, just the juice.

The above quote is a good example of the kind of information and suggestions you will find in "Pagan Every Day" -- i.e., a book with ideas for a Pagan observance for every day of the year. Some days have ideas for thought or ritual, others tell the stories of ancient and new Deities, some days have both. Ardinger's rituals and Deity stories are a delightful mix of the traditional, and the newly minted -- such as an occasional rib-tickler like Elvis, that on reflection makes archetypal sense. She occasionally asks deep questions in clear, simple ways that we can then readily ponder. Ardinger also offers many suggestions for both inner personal work and that which can connect us to others, our local communities and the world.

The upshot of all this is I was left feeling at the end of the book as if I'd just taken a ride on an extremely intelligent and well-read living spiral, with a cool sense of humor! (BTW, the book has a wonderful list of reading resources and related web sites at the end.)

I looked through the book for other quotes to use in this review but my list quickly got out of hand. There is such a variety of gems to choose from. So I'll just end my review with what a friend and fellow writer said about Ardinger's book:

" exciting pagan panorama. A lot of juicy tidbits, succinctly revealed. I'm having such a good time tonight." [email correspondence, Mary Joneve McCormick]

Yes, have a good time, nay, a great time with this book and then see how you can use some of its many treasures in your daily life.

* * * *

‘til next time, keep dreaming,


[aka: Patricia Kelly]

****If you wish to copy or use any of my writing or poems, please email me for permission (under “View my complete profile”)****My other blog: ROSWILA’S TAROT GALLERY & JOURNAL.