Tips for reading Tarot

Three years ago I woke up, shifting from one version of my adult self to another. Perhaps it was a long overdue relinquishing of the maiden archetype I was inhabiting and carrying, entry into the domain of the mother archetype? Or simply a moment that was waiting to happen at some point on my timeline? I only know that it was abrupt and painful and that it lasted a while.

During this period, everything changed: things that had worked previously broke, while things that were dormant came to life. And while I couldn’t think, read or write and socialising and going out at all was daunting and I mostly slept because I had no energy and every body part hurt: I began to see, smell, taste, touch and feel in a new and way more intense way.

We all experience ups and downs. At some point, chances are we are all going to get a little or a lot sick. When this happens, Tarot gives you a map. I like to think of it like a guardian angel whispering in your ear. You pull a card, receive a message and through it know that you are not alone: there is a path, a purpose; each unique. Ours is not to question why but simply to surrender. The more you do, bit by not, slowly, the easier it gets.

The journey from waking to where I am today was long and difficult, and each day still requires mindfulness in its travelling. Life is certainly more of an effort, but time is revealing better days. Entry into a new era: all this has been a learning curve; to stop serves no purpose, rewinding is not an option, lamenting will only make me sad. My rage, which was mighty, has been and gone. Perhaps I got a little burned, but the foundation remains. Something that has come to have great value is my routine; most specifically, my spiritual one: meditation, yoga, tarot, working with crystals and flower essences, prayer and channeling.

I begin each day with a deck and my most pressing question. The card I select becomes my mantra for the next 24 hours. I carry it with me, either in a pocket or in my bra, taking it out every half hour or so to contemplate and briefly annotate. At some point I sit down, pull out my journal and write, allowing my consciousness to flow through me. Later, I return to this, and reply; answering questions, posing my own. At the end of the day, I turn to yoga. Yoga grounds this: I dance it, breathe into it, make it into a stretch and a pose. After, meditation takes it deeper, allowing the image and what it represents to come alive. This is a very personal relationship. It never fails to amaze me how apt the cards are.

At the beginning I was wary because cards like The Tower and Death kept coming up. As I’ve taken their advice and healed, allowing dead layers to fall away, my attitude has changed and I’ve stopped only wanting to hear when the forecast and prognosis is sunny and bright. For truth, while not always pretty, is always right.

Avoidance only delays what must inevitably be dealt with, denial pressing mute on what is already in existence or is about to arrive.


  1. Go to your favourite deck now, or the deck you are guided to.
  2. Take out the cards.
  3. Knock on them to clear them and then hold them tightly in both of your hands.
  4. Closing your eyes, ask your question. I like to make mine a prayer and then, after, bring the deck to my heart in an act of surrender and gratitude.
  5. Return the cards to the front and shuffle until a card reveals itself: flipping, peaking, slipping, leaping, etc.
  6. Thank the deck, the energy it brought forth and your guides (if you called them), respectfully returning all but the single card to its box and shelf.
  7. Spend a few minutes with your card, reacting to it both mentally and energetically.

Think about:

  1. Who or what it is it about?
  2. Where is it set, and in what season?
  3. The emotion it conveys?
  4. What part of your body and your life is it referring to?
  5. Does it have a colour, a smell, a texture, a taste?
  6. Is it fast or slow, hot or cold, smooth or rough?

Jot down these initial responses to come back to later: they form the framework for your interpretation. You will try to get away and even to change. Use these to help you not do this. For example: If you think the card is Sam: the card is Sam; you oughtn’t to change it to Sarah simply because you’d prefer that. You can, but then the healing is hidden, the learning lost.

Tarot teaches us in difficult ways. As a mother it is TOUGH LOVE.

If you are brave enough to receive the gift it is giving, you can provide a parent for your adult self, bringing healing to all of your pieces.

Try out my way of working with the cards for a week, following the above guidelines and prompts. See what you learn and let me know how you get on. If you have any questions, I will be happy to answer them. And if you would like to have a professional reading with me for more depth, or perhaps to help you unravel what your own exploration and digging has brought up, I would love to help you.


If this article has stirred things up for you or made you realise there are things in your life you would like to resolve, please feel free to visit my contact page or email me me to discuss both these things and the possibility of our working together in the future to accomplish these things. I work with animals as well as people and I even have dog tarot cards

Or, to book an appointment directly, see my contact page.

To be healed is having an awareness that you were never broken

To keep up to date with my progress and receive love and light in your inbox, sign up to my newsletter …………..yes please!

• Ask me a question or book an appointment
Buy remedies, healing aides and helpful accessories
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The Eight of Wands


This reading uses two cards _pulled from the Sharman Caselli deck, with the first dealt representing your current situation: what is going on in your life right now, your drive and focus; and the second what is crossing you: situations, people, energies, etc…

Essentially, where you are heading and what is preventing you from achievening it:

  1. First Dealt: Eight of Wands
  2. Second Dealt: Judgement




The Suit of Wands cards represent fire and primal energy. They are rooted in passion, hard work and adventure. Their focus is on creativity, momentum, action, activity, ambition, expansion, inspiration, intution, spitiriality and determination. They are about taking your ideas and making them real, picking up the tiny seeds of thought you have planted and releasing them into the world – like shooting bullets, like firing arrows.

Wands people and people with the Wands energy in their lives _whether temporarily or indefinitely, discover, push limits, excel, pour energy into and win. They fully believe and they give it their all. They love challenges, are feisty and fiery, thrive on conflict (and will sometimes seek it out). They willing throw themselves into new projects and ventures and will keep going for as long as they are engaged. Because of this, they can be erratic and unreliable: stopping to start the next ‘big thing’, abandoning mid-flow… They hate to be confined and rarely work in an office. They thrive when they are in charge. They make great leaders but find it hard to delegate (which can lose them authority and respect and even land them in trouble). They are passionate and exciting but hard to be in a relationship with, this is because they need a lot of space and freedom and can fall out of love as easily as they fell in. They are best, therefore, when paired with their own kind, who can at least understand where they are coming from when they blow hot and cold and not take things quite so personally.

As cards, Wands act as a mirror for our desires, symbolising a dream or a goal that we wish to materialise.

Take a moment now to ask yourself the following questions:

  1. What gets you excited?
  2. What wakes you up in the morning with the desire to get out of bed?
  3. What do you:
  4.          – spend your free time doing?
             – give away for free?
             – research?
             – investigate?
             – invest in?

These are your wands, the very things that make you tick; things that, were they taken away, would wound you.

My wands, in no particular order, are:

  1. Being of service
  2. Spending time and working with animals
  3. Forming and fortifying new friendships
  4. Reading
  5. Writing
  6. Drawing, painting
  7. Knitting, sewing
  8. Making things by hand *
  9. Talking to the people I see everyday:
  10.          – neighbours
             – shop assistants
             – cashiers
             – market stall owners
             – barristers
             – bank tellers
             – homeopaths
             – naturapaths
             – physios
             – hairdressers
             – beauty practitioners
             – gym staff
             – doctors
             – vets

* things that I make include, fimo unicorns, origami doves, scented soy candles, greetings cards, gluten-free cakes, gemstone jewelery; embroidered handkerchiefs, napkins and birds; knitted hand-warmers and hats; inside gardens, outside gardens and seasonal altars…
I would and do do all of these things for free.



The Major Arcana, to which the Judgement card belongs, form the foundation of the Tarot deck. There are twenty-two in total, numbered from 0-21, each representing part of the path to spiritual self-awareness and the various stages we pass through and experience as we search for greater meaning and understanding in our lives. Along this journey we encounter challenges, face adversity, perform labours, make hard decisions and fight opposing forces, each step bringing us closer to the things we truly want: inner peace, personal freedom and enlightenment. As such, they hold deeply meaningful lessons which, if we honour and use them, can help to heal, inspire and guide us along our way.

The Judgement card is number twenty: XX, 20. Dealt the right way up, it represents accountability, confrontation, absolution, resolution, resurrection and rebirth – the activity of leaving the past behind and moving into the light.

Reversed it symbolises self-doubt, self-criticism, self-loathing and self-scrutiny (which essentially means the inaction/inactivity of listening to ghosts from the past and of allowing the continuation of the hold they still have over us – things that prevent both us and our lives from moving forwards and have done so for as long as we can remember).



We will now look at each of the cards as a picture, independent from the arcana and suit, stepping inside the landscape to unpack the full meaning of what we are:

  1. endevouring to do
  2. attempting to avoid



The Eight of Wands depicts a man with a bow in posession of eight wands, seven of which are airborne. Looking, we can see that one remains, although even as we watch it, too, is being released.

The man is in the desert, standing beneath the hot sun. The surrounding landscape is arid and dry. The overhanging sky, bleached. The time is around noon and, depending on how long he stays, he can easily be home by dark if he tries. His pursuit, the reason he is out here in the first place, is one of valour, his actions charged with desire and intent. He stands with confidence: grounded, present, fully in the moment and totally engaged; the only hint of hesitation in his right foot, which, if it is not providing further balance, could be pulling away. Rather than escaping, running or returning after an absence of many days,months,years… I sense that he has slipped out to attend to a task and, upon finishing, will return to whence he came. Unlike in other cards – like Judgement, for example – he is not resisting or attempting to deny; he is looking ahead and making plans. Having woken from a long sleep in which he drifted and dithered, making up excuses for ‘why not now’: he is full of energy and drive. The danger, though, is that perhaps he is too keen, treating his wands like burning hot cakes instead of precious offspring.

Think about the wands that you have in the air at the moment and the feelings you have around them:

  1. Are you, like the Eight of Wands, simply overly excited: eager to release what would otherwise be burning a hole in your pocket?
  2. Are you practicing for what will later become the real thing?
  3. Are you aiming at something you fear and wish to annihilate?

Think about the changes going on in your life and your attitude towards them:

Do you feel:

  • excited
  • energised
  • hopeful
  • determined
  • inspired
  • motivated
    Or do you feel:

    • fearful
    • resistent
    • reluctant

    We are comfortably into the suit now and have come a long way since our humble one-like beginnings. Along ‘this way’, we have figured out what it is we want and what we need in order to achieve it, determining where our strengths and weaknesses are and what we need to release and heal * and begun to put it out there. We are moving forwards, we have cleared the path, everything is flowing freely… There are no physical blocks that we cannot either step around or remove, for we have dealt with most things that injure and inhibit us already: quit a job, left a partner, severed ties with unhealthy people, places and relationships, etc. We are proceeding rapidly: faster than before: faster, perhaps, than we are comfortable with. We are busy but in a good way.

    * If we are not healing and if we are not happy _and I would guess if you have found this particular card reading and if you are still reading it, especially this bit… that you are not, it is because the Judgement card crosses both the present and the future, blocking what lies ahead and holding you back. Once you deal with this, with the contents of the coffins, your coffins, you will be free to embrace the full energy and potential of the Eight of Wands and on your way to success and mental and physical freedom. Embrace the cards, answer the questions, do the homework and make the images into your phone or tablet wallpaper so that you can spend some time with them each day. The more you get to know the cards and how they relate to you: the more you can shift and transform your life.

    The Eight of Wands invites you to embrace action and activity, loosening the usual control and need for certainty to allow for spontaneity and adventure. It’s driving message is to dive in and trust: in the flow, in the natural order, in the journey that is unique to you.

    Like stepping onto a rollercoaster: to truely benefit from the ride, you must first surrender to that which is outside of you and unknown.

    Take a moment to zoom in on the creature _lizard, gecko, salamander, baby dragon… in the bottom right-hand corner:

    1. If he were a stone weighing you down, what would he represent?
    2. If he were a weight pulling, holding you back, who would he be?
    3. If he were a gremlin, highlighting your weaknesses and undermining your confidence, what would he be saying to you?
    4. What negative words do you allow into your head just as you are getting ready to start something new?
    5. What always stops you from pursing your dreams?

    These are things you need to consider.



    As I said earlier, the Judgement card is number twenty out of the twenty-two Major Arcana cards. Sitting in-between the Sun and the World, it tells us that we have already successfully opened up the space for power and light to enter into our lives and are on our way to attaining the future of our dreams _as soon as we attend to a bit of important housekeeping, that is.

    To start this process, look at what you judge:

    • in yourself
    • in others

    Look at how you respond, react and report:

    • situations
    • experinces
    • settings
    • locations

    Ask yourself:

    • Where do I hate?
    • What do I criticise and condemn?
    • What annoys me about others?
    • Where do I lack patience?

    These are your ‘red flags‘, indicitive of the things (or similar) you have disowned within yourself.

    1. Maybe you lose patience with people who take their time or who stand before you in a queue talking?
    2. Perhaps you criticise those who eat junkfood, are overweight, fail to exercise and who take little care in their appearance?
    3. Or else you hate those who exhibit aggressive behaviour: road rage, supermarket impatience, pedestrian intollerance and yet do the very same yourself?

    The things that we dislike in others are a reflection of the things we dislike in ourselves, our shadow parts, and unless we are already emotionally and psychologically aware, actively analysing our thoughts and our feelings, processing our experiences, clearing the discharge from our reactions and responses… we are likely to be completely unaware of them. This is why therapy, self-help, energy healing and spiritual development are so helpful because they shine light into dark areas, illuminating what would otherwise remain unknown or concealed.

    Take a closer look at the card now. The Judgement card depicts three naked people standing inside three plain coffins with open lids. Above, there is an angel with a horn, floating in mid-air. A white flag flaps gently in the breeze. In response to the horn, the people are waking: standing, rising up; arms extended, begging…The angel is a messenger, declaring, proclaiming, announcing… the start of things to come, the end of things as they are; a birth, a new beginning or a death? In the background the sea is calm and the sky, aside from a few clouds, is clear.

    Look at the people and how desperate they look. Look at the dark space beneath them, yawning, like a mouth. See how they long to escape, leaving behind the limitation and confinement which has become their lives. The angel’s arrival is a blessing to them, waking them from a magical sleep in which they have been unaware of all that they lack. Without the veil of denial and deception covering their eyes, they can see the world as it is: huge, timeless, onmipotent, ever-changing; indifferent and wonderous. They can see that it is people and events that have hurt them and that they have hurt themselves, not the world: the world just is. And if the sun can rise again at the start of each day, beginning afresh without the attachment to the memory of yesterday: so can they. This is what the flag is announcing as it waves and snaps, the cross, emblazoned across its centre, denoting a return to balance. But red, reminiscent of blood: there is a necessary sacrifice of a Christly-kind, which, afterwards, in the white of the cloth, will become clean.

    Consider also The Red Cross and its focus on healing. Red is about bandages and wounds, spilling blood, warning and danger. It is also, for women, about mensturation and the shedding of what is not needed.

    The apprearance of this card in a reading (this reading, in particular) suggests that it is time to step forwards and take charge, even if that means some hard choices. Judgement calls you to attention, demands your presence, confronts you with ghosts, skeletons, dark undersides and cobwebs… In an otherwise empty sea – a vast cobalt platea where, above at least, all is calm – Judgement releases all of the things you would usually try to avoid. When you see this card in a reading, especially when it is reversed, it may be time to reassess your life and to live differently, listening to your needs, doing for yourself for once, valueing yourself first.

    1. So, what do we do about Judgement and how can we move forwards?
    2. How can we embrace the full potential of the Eight of Wands, bringing more of what we want into our life?

    Judgement invites you to:

    • contemplate and take stock
    • review and reassess
    • look back and see what you have learned
        As I have mentioned already, the Judgement card in this spread is reversed. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but it does mean finding the courage and strength to take an honest look at your life, going back over painful events and experineces, some of which may have been truely traumatic and which may traumatise you still, unpicking them until you understand why they happened and how they were able to, and how you can avoid them ever happening again.

        1. Perhaps you gravitate towards empty and unavailable relationships where all you do is give; friendships where there is no reciprocal listening?
        2. Perhaps you work too hard for a tyrannical boss in an environment where there is no thanks?
        3. Perhaps you entertain addictive behaviours, self-defeatist thoughts, spiral from high to low?
        4. Perhaps you simply don’t love yourself enough and this is evident throughout your life?

        It is important that you learn from your previous mistakes, that is the key theme here. Take some time to absorb these facts in order to release yourself yourself from the downward energy and the cycle of repetion.

        Judgement is about:

        • personal forgiveness
        • finding it within yourself to cleanse and release your sins
        • cutting the connection with your past and stepping outwards into the light

        You have lived too long in shadow, focussed too heavily on helping others shine, hidden your true thoughts, desires and feelings in order to fit in. Only it hasn’t made you happy and it hasn’t won you the companionship, love or life you want to lead.

        Remember, always, that you are in control. Take back your power and pour it inside.



        Wands are fueled by primal energy and are rooted in dreams and desires. They are all about activity, adventure and taking your ideas and making them real. Like a seed, each represents a goal that needs planting. What gets you excited, wakes you up, do you do even without prompt or payment? These are your seeds, plant them.

        The Eight of Wands invites you to embrace action and adventure, to pursue your dreams with passion and conviction. In order to do this, you need to loosen the control that currently rules you and allow for a little uncertainty in your life. Dive in, trust in the flow, let the journey that is unique to you happen.

        The Major Arcana form the foundation of the tarot deck, representing the path to spiritual self-awareness and the challenges we face as we move towards inner peace, personal freedom and enlightenment. Each one holds a deeply meaningful lesson, which, if used correctly, can help to heal, inspire and guide us as we continue to grow and evolve.

        Number twenty, the Judgement card sits between the Sun and the World. It shows us that we have opened up the space for love and light to enter our lives and are on our way to attaining the future of our dreams. It represents accountability, absolution, resurrection and rebirth and is about confronting the past, releasing our demons and moving forwards. Reversed it represents imprisonment, confinement, guilt and shame and the inactivity of self-destructive behaviour. It tells us that certain things are stopping us from getting what we want and that, maybe, they always have. It also tells us what we need to do in order to get unstuck. The key to moving forwards, to our wands reaching our desired goals which we stretch towards and shoot at but never achieve, is acknowledging, accepting, forgiving and releasing, setting the past and its skeletons free. In valueing yourself enough to put yourself first before others, you regain your power, siultaneously sending out a message to others that you are not to be disrespected, dismissed or denied. Embracing Judgement marks the end of the old and the beginning of the new. What it offers can be incredibly healing if you are prepared to journey with it.



        • Respect yourself and others will respect you
        • Love yourself and others will be more kind
        • Forgive yourself and your world will be transformed
        • Devote yourself to the path of emotional healing and spiritual development and you will be filled with light

        Now is the time to let go:

        • of the past
        • of the old feelings
        • of the resentments and judgements

        …for only then will you be able to truely be free.



        You have read this article and found these cards today because they are meant to guide you. Honour yourself with the permission and freedom to really appreciate that.

        This means: reading through the article again from the beginning and taking the time to record your thoughts; then, looking back over these notes and the card on a regular basis to check in, using this disciplined exercise as your motivation to implement the necessary modifications and changes in your life.

        To do this:

        1. Write down the answers to all of the questions in this article, then think about how those answers apply to you.
        2. Do your own reading of the cards and compare your answers to the questions in the article to your reading of the cards.
        3. Make a list of the main points, those that strike you as important.
        4. Check back in with your notes, first daily and then weekly, to inspire change and healing in your life.
        5. Ask yourself where you need healing, where you need help, where you need balance and where you need love, then commit to spending half an hour each day towards working to achieve this.


        If this article has stirred things up for you or made you realise there are things in your life you would like to resolve, please feel free to visit my contact page or email me me to discuss both these and the possibility of our working together in the future. I work both face-to-face and remotely using Skype.

        Or, to book an appointment directly, see my contact page.

        To be healed is having an awareness that you were never broken

        To keep up to date with my progress and receive love and light in your inbox, send me your email address.

        • Ask me a question or book an appointment
        Buy remedies, healing aides and helpful accessories
        • Check out my Etsy shop Lemon Rose Petals 🍋 to see what else I do

Falling Awake

I paddle my bed
into the still-existing bathroom
and stare at my face in the mirror.

The floor is an ocean.
The wall is a door.
The windows no longer exist.

In the frame
I see a woman dancing,
held captive to a thousand strings.

by Rebecca L. Atherton


If this poem has stirred things up for you or made you realise there are things in your life you would like to resolve, please feel free to visit my contact page or email me me to discuss both these things and the possibility of our working together in the future to accomplish these things.

Or, to book an appointment directly, see my contact page.

To be healed is having an awareness that you were never broken

To keep up to date with my progress and receive love and light in your inbox, send me your email address.

• Ask me a question or book an appointment
Buy remedies, healing aides and helpful accessories
• Check out my Etsy shop Lemon Rose Petals 🍋 to see what else I do

The Prince of Spring



This card is known as the Prince of Spring or Knight of Cups, depending on what deck you are using. Doreen Virtue and Radleigh Valentine’s Fairy Tarot has us looking at the Prince of Spring, an illustration of a winged man, a warrior, a knight… sat upon a robed rabbit; reminiscent, to me, of Alice and Wonderland and the White Rabbit, only this one is brown and looks more tamed. The Rider Waite Smith’s Original Tarot, on the other hand, depicts the more traditional Knight of Cups, showing us a knight on a horse, richly clothed, a gold cup held aloft in his right hand. His helmet and boots have decorative wings, symbolic of flight and adventure. He has travelled far, succeeded his body to journey the landscapes of his mind, his inner yearnings, his heart path. His cloak, adorned with fish, show us that he is an emotional man, in touch with his feelings, aware of his thoughts, his needs, on a deep level. So, a knight on a rabbit and a knight on a horse: not so very different; only the energy behind them is, leading to both cards giving a very different reading if read apart. Which this is why I like to compare decks, making the most of all that is on offer to me. I find it helps me to get a more complete picture of the story contained and to obtain a deeper reading. And it’s fun to blend, mixing old with new, fairies and angels against symbols and archetypes; unpicking and unpacking, examining and analysing, holding things imagined and things romanticised against things experienced and thing felt. I like the contrast, the challenge, the opposing messages and stories that present. I like when I mix unicorns with dolphins, mermaids with ascended masters, messages from the universe and messages from Louise Hay… The symbols vary, and the text, but the depth and the meaning is there. The magic is not lost.


This card is a call to action, encouraging us to awaken our inner warrior and ride out into the unknown. It is asking that we make him charming and confident and passionate and restless. That we cast him, as if in spell, in the exact model we need to achieve and accomplish all that we need. His purpose, we are shown, is to stir us out of inactivity, to coax our gentler “I’ll just put up with it for one more day…” side into the idea of leaving, departing the security of the known and comfortable, certain and safe, for the “anything and everything might happen” of the unknown. For while we have created this space that we feel safe within, we are also arguably trapped, living a small version of the story we were born to live.


The two cards have many parallels:

• a knight
• a beast
• a talisman
• a wild terrain
• purpose, poise and confidence

Looking at the Rider Waite Smith version: I see a proud knight, a man in his element; his courage, his compassion, his creativity… extended in his right hand, almost as if in offering to the gods. He has these things and he is proudly proclaiming them to all who will listen, declaring “I am an honest man. I am diligent. I have worked hard and paid my dues. I have won, I have not taken. I have lost sweat and shed blood. I have earned through my efforts and my wealth furnishes me on multiple levels. I am physically fit. I am emotionally balanced. My mind is quick and exercised often in a broad variety of things. I read. I write. I study. I pray and meditate. I am spiritual. I am travelled. I am cultured. I am resilient and strong. I have all or most of the things that I believe I need: food, shelter, companionship, clothing, weapons, books. I believe in the future and the benign nature of the universe. I life is on my side… You can feel all of this looking at him. He is not a shy man. He is not secretive or closed. And neither is he cowed or humbled. If life hasn’t always been kind to him, it is on his side now and he embraces this fully.

On his outfit we witness a suit of armour with a colourful coat, adorned, as mentioned before, with fish. From this we know that he is in touch with his unconscious and his emotions and his inner self; that he journeys as often on the inside as the out. He appears to be wealthy, successful and strong.

The horse, on the other hand, looks slightly reluctant: shy and bashful, a little unsure of itself. It looks tamed, obedient instead of in command. So even though this animal is a symbol of power and strength and speed and energy, here that seems to be contained. It’s not easily visible. Maybe it isn’t quite ready? Maybe it’s still thinking and dreaming about other things? Or hard at work on the landscape of the mind, the dreamscape it wishes one day to turn into a reality but isn’t ready yet to put it to the test outside. For dreams kept hidden are arguably safer than dreams shared, and dreams put to the test are subject to trail and error and road blocks and ruts. I sense, in this respect, that the horse is more of a feminine energy. And maybe reluctant to allow herself to be ridden by a man, to be taken over by this other more powerful force. But the card is calling upon her to trust, to allow, to temporarily be submissive, to act more from her head than from her heart, so that she might be led for a while. For it is only in bending to this other, this man, that she will pass through the desert of loneliness and drought she finds herself stuck within and reach the verdant meadow full of companionable horses just out of sight. A place where the sun always shines, where the flowers grow in December, where the rabbits lie down with lions and the horses with butterflies.

Take action today, this is what the Knight of Cups calls for. Be brave so that you can manifest your dreams into tangible reality. Listen to your mind as well as to your heart. Trust all sides of yourself – both masculine and feminine, knight and horse, fairy and rabbit – and act in unity, a little bit of one with a little bit of the other, never leaning too much one way. In doing so, it promises, you will move from where you are towards where you want to be. I like this card. It speaks of all things happy.

And the Virtue Valentine? Here we fall instantly into a field of bulrushes, towering, or so it feels, above us. We are small, and they are big, like the sky. Everything is magnified and splendid in its magnification. We are a knight, only this time a winged one. We carry a long wand, wrapped in vines with leaves like stars. It is an object of power and success, of victory. It is not a battle worn sword, it is not a bloody knife. It is a cared for and polished object that our rider has taken the time to bedeck. His armour is golden, like his wings. He shines with confidence, courage, achievement, self belief, certainty, direction and purpose. He has a mission and he is determined to accomplish it. 

His stead, the rabbit, looks somewhat less sure. Her eyes show a degree of sadness, like she has been pulled away from somewhere she cherished, forced to venture out when she was perfectly content at home. And I’m not so sure she likes the heavy bright outfit, which declares to the world that she is owned, that she belongs to another not side by side but underneath, as in less than. She is wise and she is silent. She is of a certain age. She knows the world and her place within it and she has come to accept her lot. She no longer fights or argues. She has her life and she she lives it. And while it might not be all that big or grand or contain all of the things her younger self set out to achieve and own, it is alright with that. She knows enough of what now lies in the future to align her mind with it and relinquish the things that were always wanted but have yet to come.

As with the Knight of Cups, the Prince of Spring is a call to action, a demand for the currently slumbering to be awakening. The ‘you’ who is in acceptance with the current status quo is being shaken by the universe, asked to saddle up, to be the rabbit/horse, and to accommodate the rider. For this is how your dreams will be won, your desires achieved, your goals materialised.

Reassure your softer nature that this change is alright, that it is to be accepted, that it is what your higher self would like. Tell her that she will be protected and kept safe and secure, that nothing will harm her. That even if it is painful for a time and even if the change to her routine is uncomfortable, even unbearable: it will pass, as everything eventually does, revealing a shiny new future.

You have read this article and found these cards because right now they can help you in some way. Honour yourself with the permission and freedom to really appreciate what they offer.


If this article has stirred things up for you or made you realise there are things in your life you would like to resolve, please feel free to visit my contact page or email me me to discuss both these things and the possibility of our working together in the future to accomplish these things.

Or, to book an appointment directly, see my contact page.

To be healed is having an awareness that you were never broken

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The word temperance means to moderate or reign in and this card is asking that we do just that – to our thoughts, feelings, public expressions and physical actions.

• Are we being messy with our emotions, throwing our toys around and creating havoc for the people in our lives?

• Are we acting out – without consideration, without thinking about how this energy is also affecting us, deep inside?

• Are we moving too fast, acting too rashly, feeling too deeply about stuff…?

Think about what you might perhaps be overly energetic or passionate in your life right now and ask yourself if this is the correct energy to be spinning. If it is healthy and balanced.


Or perhaps, inversely, instead of being overly energetic and extrovert you are being overly insular and passive, holing up inside, hibernating as if it were winter, and this card is calling upon you to summon up more oomph!, more passion, energy and drive and to start acting upon your desires, your wishes, thoughts and dreams, instead of just standing there frozen, like a rabbit in headlights?


Think about the word temperance.

Think about your behaviour right now.

Think about your thoughts and feelings.

• What is your current energy – fast or slow, high or low, shiny or dull…?

• What do you need to do to balance it, so that when you go inside it feels calm, safe, still and peaceful? What do you need more of?

Add this to the mix and keep adding it daily, until you feel your imbalances balance out.


Now look at the image.

• What feelings does it evoke?

• What does the Angel represent to you?

• What do you think the two cups are; the circle in the centre of her forehead; the triangle at her chest?

• And the flowers around her, what are they?

• Look at the water, the lake or pond, and her feet and the grass and landscape behind it? What do they tell you?


To me, the Angel is an emissary from above, bringing us an important message to integrate into our physical lives. She is telling us that we are doing well, that we have come far, that we are on the right track, that we should keep going. She is encouraging us to keep moving forwards. But she is also calling us to a temporary halt so that we might go inside, take a moment to connect to our deepest most intimate parts, in order to confirm what it is that they want, need; what their life path is: to make sure we are still walking in the right direction at the right speed with the right energy attached, and to correct the imbalances.

She is holding two golden cups, showing us the potential we have for spiritual, emotional, mental and physical wealth; for creative abundance; for turning thought into substance, dream into reality. She is letting us know that we have these things, that we have achieved and collected much, but that we are currently keeping it separate – spiritual in one box, emotional in another; mental and physical again, apart… and, because of this, we are missing out. She is telling us that we need to mix them, pour an amount from each one into all of the others, tip it back and forwards until it feels integrated, balanced, complete.

It is the same with her feet. Look how she has one foot in the water, in the sea of her emotions, in her subconscious, in feelings and desires, in her true pure essence, and one still on the land, hesitating, unsure, clinging to all that is material and superficial and outside of her, clinging to social conditioning and expected behaviours and external achievements, allowing them to determine her worth.

The triangle at her heart is a sign of the feminine, a reminder of what we are, a calling to be true, to be balanced, to be loving and compassionate, to express grace in all that we do, and, above all else, to remember ourself and be attentive to our inner self’s needs and to the needs of our soul.

On the right there are two flowers: narcissi. Remember the tale of the beautiful God Narcissus, how he was proud and vanity. The narcissus as a flower is a symbol of vanity, of the material and superficial things in life, highlighting what the left foot is already attempting to point out, showing us that we have an attachment to material things, an over absorption in the ego and the self, an inherited societal belief that we are what we do and how much we have and how young and how beautiful we are or once were.

The right foot, on the other hand – the one in the water – is in touch with deeper truer things; it is more balanced and temperate. And this message is further expressed in the brilliance of the sun cresting the mountain in the distance, acting as a simple and accessible reminder that, no matter what, the sun will continue to shine, will continue to rise and set, will continue to pour light and warmth and energy over all that we do have, over all that we do, over all that we are… if we are courageous enough to believe that even when we cannot see it it is still there, way up high beyond sight, beyond touch and feeling, always constant, always true, for it is not the sun that changes but our relationship to it and our physical perception of these things. We are in fact a part of everything. We are infinite and exist beyond matter and time, beyond space. We are the sun and the moon and the stars and the sky and the rain and the clouds and the hail and snow. We are all at the same time and in that same instance we are nothing. There is nothing to fear because at the same time as existing and feeling and being and inhabiting all that is heavy and so tragically typically human, we are also removed and separate, light and free, not a part of and yet in everything. We are bigger than and as small as can be. We are infinitely precious and we don’t matter at all. All of our burdens, all of our fears, are entirely human, they matter only right now, in this reality. On our spiritual path, on our path of purpose and reason for being here, these things are simply lessons and experiences we have drawn ourselves towards us in order to grow and learn.


Keep the image of this card with you throughout the day. Meditate upon it for a week. Write down your thoughts and what it calls to mind. Record where your life needs balance, moderation, temperance. And apply these things in all of the ways that you can.

Then share this card with others and invite them to bring its energy into their lives. Love this card and thank it, appreciating all that it has shown you, all that it will continue to reveal. Do not forget it until you have allowed its seeds to be planted, its potential to take root; until you are sure it will grow to produce bright and brilliant offspring, flowers that you will cherish and value forever more, that you will allow into and to totally transform your life.

If this article has stirred things up for you or made you realise there are things in your life you would like to resolve, please feel free to visit my contact page or email me me to discuss both these things and the possibility of our working together in the future to accomplish these things.

Or, to book an appointment directly, see my contact page.


To be healed is having an awareness that you were never broken

To keep up to date with my progress and receive love and light in your inbox, send me your email address.

• Ask me a question or book an appointment
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The Animal That Never Was


This poem has long been an inspiration to me and I find myself returning to it often; usually when I am reminiscing about my past and how (once, many years ago) it served as a vehicle to get me unstuck.

Removing the veil from my eyes; placing me back at the epicentre of my own heart; encouraging me – with its story of courage, of patience, of love… to stay there until I had got to intimitely love and respect my inner part – it paved the way for all of the growing and shedding and healing that would follow, forming the stones of my new path.

Read it through slowly.
Repeat this several times.
Take each verse as a separate story and unpick its mystery.

This is the animal that never was.
They didn’t know, and loved him anyway:
his bearing, his neck, the way he moved,
the light in his quiet eyes.

True, he didn’t exist. But because they loved him
he became a real animal. They made a space for him.
And in that clear, uncluttered space, he lifted his head
and hardly needed to exist.

They fed him: not with grain, but ever
with the chance that he could be.
And that so strengthened him

that, from within, he grew a horn.
All white, he drew near to a virgin and found himself
in a silver mirror and in her.

by Rainer Maria Rilke

Now ask yourself the following questions and note down their answers:


This is the animal that never was.
They didn’t know, and loved him anyway:
his bearing, his neck, the way he moved,
the light in his quiet eyes.

• Who is the animal in the first verse?
• If that animal were a part of you, which part would it be?


True, he didn’t exist. But because they loved him
he became a real animal. They made a space for him.
And in that clear, uncluttered space, he lifted his head
and hardly needed to exist.

• What could you imagine into existence?
• How would doing this empower you?
• How would making this imagined thing real change your life?


They fed him: not with grain, but ever
with the chance that he could be.
And that so strengthened him

• What would you feed this ‘imagined’ animal?
• How would you strengthen it?


that, from within, he grew a horn.
All white, he drew near to a virgin and found himself
in a silver mirror and in her.

• What does the horn represent?
• How does it change things?
• Who or what is the virgin?
• What is the mirror and what does it symbolise/represent?

What have you learned about the poem?
What has it taught you about yourself?
How can you integrate this information, making it a functional part of your life?


1) Make some time today to sit and meditate on the poem and its imagery.

2) Allow yourself to create its landscape inside the landscape of your head.
    See the ‘animal’; walk up to it, touch it, talk to it, ask it what it wants
   you to know, what it needs from you in order to be realised.

3) Add these revelations to your notes.

4) And then – if you want to, feel inspired, can… write your own poem based on
    all that this poem has revealed to you, encouraging your own ‘animal’ into life.

Above all, allow yourself to enjoy the exercise and to become absorbed in the beautiful energy of this experience and the opportunity for growth it presents.

If this article has stirred things up for you or made you realise there are things in your life you would like to resolve, please feel free to visit my contact page or email me me to discuss both these things and the possibility of our working together in the future to accomplish these things.

Or, to book an appointment directly, see my contact page.

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Busses and bikes

In Australia it was pedestrians and skateboards. In Mallorca it was sports cars and yachts. In London it’s bodies, busses and bikes; one cannot move for tripping over the things. The amount of brainpower, of concentration… it takes to navigate a couple of streets; to walk from position A to position B without something heinous or nefarious manifesting, is actually quite exhausting. For me, especially. Sensitive to the environment, to the ebb and flow of its energies: these things pierce the skin, going deep. At times, I actually feel traumatised by it. And often I pine for my other life – the old one, the one left behind. I’m pining now, as rain invades yet another day and July steps even closer to its inevitable end.

So how does one cope in an environment where the pace is ‘all go’ and the attitude aggressive and heavy? How do you walk through the swell of the heaving thicket without incurring misfortune or injury? Lost to phones and worries and work, bills to pay and deadlines to meet… today’s commuters are imprisoned, bereft of awareness to anything ‘other’, ‘external’ or ‘else’.

I’ve been thinking about it a lot lately, because it’s solution is vital to my health. My body needs movement, light, air. My mind needs change of environment, scenery, interaction with self and head. My soul needs contact with the world outside my flat: new things, familiar things, things with happy energy, things that light me up. And yet these ‘lights’, especially lately, have started to really hurt, causing me to suffer even as I repair.

So I’ve thought and I’ve fought and I’ve researched in depth and I’ve trialed and tested as well and I’ve discovered some things, which, although by no means a cure, are useful as both bandage and a shield.

My discoveries are as follows… Feel free to dip in and out and use at will, and to respond with suggestions, alternatives and feedback. This is important work and I have a genuine interest in its solution.



Things to do before leaving the sanctity of your residence.

The Protective Bubble: Every morning before you go out, take a moment to go inside and ground yourself. Begin by closing your eyes and sinking into your body, sending your feet into the floor, your head into your heart. Now, taking several deep, focused breaths, relax any tension and release any thoughts. Next, imagine a bubble of pink light above your head, big enough to fit you. Pull it down over your body until it surrounds you and then push it out several inches. Surround it in a thin layer of silver, more like a coating, a skin. Then draw an even-armed cross in front, behind, to your left and to your right, above your head and below your feet. Make these crosses gold. Feel the energy of the pink bubble, the protection of the silver skin and the love of the gold crosses. Absorb this feeling and you know that you are safe.

The Impenetrable Cloak: Call upon Archangel Michael (or, if angels aren’t your thing, who or whatever works for you: your guardian, your guide, your spirit animal, your higher self, the power of universe, the love of the earth, the grace of God, etc…) Ask to borrow his (or their) cloak. Picture it wrapped around you, covering your body from your neck to your feet. Give it a hood. Pull it up. See yourself standing in front of a mirror in the cloak. Know that while you wear this cloak, nothing can touch you, nothing can get in. Strengthen it daily and it will be like your new best friend. And give thanks for it too. And give it back after each outing, that way you remain respectful to the process and the gift.

The Enlightened One: Sit in your ‘special‘ space. Play some gentle music. Light a candle or some incense. Close your eyes and travel inside. Slow your breath, clear your mind, ground and centre your body. Remain until you feel calm and clear and ‘zen‘.

The Extra Enlightened One: Repeat the above. Then continue as follows… Imagine a hoover or a hose positioned high above your head coming down to you from heaven(or from your ‘place-of-choice-most-sacred’, if you are not a heaven fan). Allow it to enter through your crown, to turn itself on, and to start to slowly suck, gently removing any dark or heavy energy, anything that is unwanted and stuck. Permit it to continue, moving deeper into until it has cleaned every undesirable out. Then switch the button, which you now see positioned on the nosle, transforming the ‘In’ of the breathe into an ‘Out’. See a stream of white light emerge – like a jet of water if you were watering a garden. Send it into every organ, every appendage, every ligament and cell. Sense it filling you up: with energy, with charge, with power. Finish with the ‘Impenetrable Cloak’ or the ‘Protective Bubble’.



Things to do upon returning to your residence, arriving in another space, or in an emergency ‘spur of the moment’ moment.

Shaking it off: When animals experience a shock or anything unpleasant, they shake. Watch and you will see. Dogs do it all the time, the small ones especially. This is because they have an awareness of their regulatory system and a knowledge of what their bodies need. And, unlike us, they are grounded and exist in the moment. Like dogs, we too can apply this practice and there are several ways. Choose whichever one appeals the most, feels the best to you, or fits your environment.

1. The simple shake: Imagine you are nervous or experiencing a caffeine crash. Recall how certain parts of your body trembled of their own accord. Take this remembering and apply it (the shake without the emotion) to whatever part of your body feels traumatised, challenged or tense, thinking about the incident that caused you to feel this way. Shake/tremble either consciously or unconsciously until it feels like it has all been discharged. You can speak or remain silent, be gentle or be rough. It’s improvised: do whatever fits, the freer the better.

2. The full-on shake: Do the same as above: just up the energy, allowing your entire body to express itself; revealing not only the tension and trauma of the moment but that which has also been absorbed and suppressed. Let go: spilling the years, clearing the backlog. Keep going for as long as you are comfortable to do so. Make it as big or as small, as loud or as quiet, as external or as internal as you like. Sometimes, just imagining it works. Listen to your body and give it what it needs. Then thank it by giving it a hug or placing your hands over your heart, feeling the power of your own self-love.

3. The ‘real deal’: This one is the actual exercise shown on the TRE website. Start by preparing your space: a blanket on the floor, a pillow at its head, closed curtains or blinds, low or no lights, a candle or incense, music.

                  Step 1: the forced surrender

                  • find a clear space of wall
                  • stand with your back against it
                  • squat as if you are sitting on a chair
                  • hold this position for 1-2 minutes or as long as it takes to respond

Note: it is supposed to hurt, you are supposed to shake, this is the point.

                  Step 2: the passive surrender

                  • lie on your back with your legs bent, feet together
                  • allow your knees to fall open as wide as they wish to go
                  • relax your arms, letting them rest by your hips, several
                    inches from your body
                  • have your palms facing up, hands slightly curled
                  • allow quivers or tremors to express as they like
                  • if it gets too intense: take a break, extending your legs straight out,
                    then bring them in again and continue
                  • change position as you see fit and continue for as long as you like

At the end, lie in a relaxed position for several minutes. Be patient and wait, even if it feels like nothing is happening. This is not an acquired skill: it is something that is already there inside you but which you have forgotten how to do. The key is to let go, to surrender.

For tips, see the official homepage or try YouTube.

Smudging: Simple and effective, this is one of the most powerful tools you can use to cleanse yourself of negative energies or influences. You will need a smudge stick, an abalone shell and matches or a lighter and a feather, all of which can be bought from most ‘new age’ shops. You can also use incense, clearing sprays, or your hand. The general idea is to sweep your body from top to toe.

           How to use a sage or cedar stick:

           • place the stick on the shell and light the end
           • extinguish the flame once it has begun to smoulder
           • take the feather (or your hand) and wave the smoke towards you
           • start at your head and work your way down to your feet
           • relight and repeat as many times as you need to clear yourself
           • be mindful, taking care to stay well away from fire alarms,
             thoroughly extinguishing all embers at the close

Angelic Repair: Lie in a comfortable space (ideally a quiet room on a bed or a sofa) or simply stand with your eyes closed. Ask Michael or Raphael to come to you and to heal you – removing any tension, stress, negative emotion or sensation, and any chords. Feel the weight lift as they suck the tension out of you and cut the chords. Then feel as they fill you back up with white light and stroke you down with their breath, soothing the edges of the newly severed chords. Finally, picture them embracing you in their wings and feel the power of that love.

I wish you much fun experimenting, much joy discovering and much healing and relief in the execution of these processes.

by Rebecca L. Atherton

To be healed is having an awareness that you were never broken

To keep up to date with my progress and receive love and light in your inbox, send me your email address.

Ask me a question or book an appointment
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