routine

Learning Lenormand

November, 2018

A Portrait of the Morning

My sun is in Taurus and I most definitely a creature of habit. My morning routine is a good example of this. I generally wake around 4 a.m. I stay in bed for a half-hour or so, cuddling with a kitty – usually Radar, who sleeps with his head on my pillow – and praying. Then I get up, put on my flannels and go into the kitchen, where I start the coffee. I feed the cats. I have my oatmeal and coffee while reading and replying to emails and then it’s in the shower. I’m in and out of the shower by 6 a.m., generally. After I’m all clean and dressed, I make my bed and straighten up my room. While I do this, I listen to classical music on the radio. I like peace and quiet in the mornings.

This is when I meditate. My son James is still sleeping and the cats are fed and back to sleep so it’s a nice serene environment.

I used to do Tarot readings after meditation. When I got my Lenormand cards, I started doing both – but with James living here, I usually don’t have time to sit and read cards for over an hour anymore. Honestly, I barely have enough time to do anything I want to do anymore but that’s a whole ’nother issue!

I don’t have to read the Tarot everyday to learn it – my life is immersed in the Tarot whether I am reading the cards or not. My poetry and my artwork are both mostly about the Tarot and uses Tarot themes. I am not so arrogant to suggest that I don’t need to learn anymore about the Tarot – there’s always more to learn! I’m just saying that my Tarot journal is now essentially a Lenormand journal.

I decided to stop doing daily readings of any cards except the Lenormand because – like learning a new language – I just wasn’t getting it. That’s the honest truth. If you are only using the cards once in a while – or if you are only using them after you have already done a reading with your favorite Tarot deck – how are you supposed to actually learn anything? I had to get in a schedule where I was sitting and only using the Lenormand. I also had to use the same format everyday – like I had with the Tarot thirty years ago, when I was using the Celtic Cross predominantly. So – after working with several different Lenormand spreads I found in Caitlín Matthew’s The Complete Lenormand Oracle Handbook: Reading the Language and Symbols of the Cards – I decided upon Spread 6 “The Portrait”, which you can find on page 132, if you own this fundamental book – and I highly recommend the purchasing of this text! – I cannot stress that enough!

The Portrait Spread is a 9-card spread that is the basis for many of the spreads that follow in subsequent chapters. Therefore, it’s perfect for a daily spread – it’s a quick and easy look on what is going on in your life. Nine is such a great number on so many levels – as the saying goes, “Three times three, so mote it be”. Matthew writes that, “Nine is a powerful number in that it replicates itself in all its multiples.” (Matthews, 131). There’s ten cards in a Celtic Cross but when you consider that the first two cards are “crossed” over the same position, it can be argued that there are actually only nine positions in the spread, which gives it a different dynamic.

The Portrait Spread is laid out with three cards along the top, three in the middle, and three along the bottom.

(Matthews, 132)

Card 5 – the middle card – is the focus of the reading. I can’t tell you how many times that card is absolutely dead on. Sometimes I can’t get heads or tails out of the cards around it – especially when I try to blend meanings of cards – but usually that one card tells me everything I need to know.

Cards 1+4+7 = the past.

Cards 2+5+8 = the present.

Cards 3+6+9 = the future.

Card 1 tells me what “provoked or instigated the issue” (Matthews, 133). On a daily basis, there might not be an ongoing “issue” but then again, there might be stuff going on that you are not yet aware! The corners 1+9+3+7 shows what that basic issue is. The diamond cards of 2+4+6+8 (who do we appreciate, sorry couldn’t help it) show the inner aspects of the issue.

After this, read the rows 1+2+3, 4+5+6, 7+8+9 as well as 1+8+3 and 7+2+9 to get all the aspects of the portrait. If this seems like a lot – well, it is! But like learning any new language, doing your daily homework is the key and that’s the only way to learn. And I’ll be honest with you – quite often, I lay out the cards and start writing my analysis in my journal and have to stop because life intrudes. So now I have started setting aside time after lunch to finish up any unfinished Lenormand “homework”. Since it is my habit to take a nap after lunch, it’s nice to drift off to sleep with Lenormand images and concepts floating through my head.

Here’s today’s portrait:

I usually shuffle the cards as part of my morning meditation. I don’t focus on a question or anything at all. I just let the cards slide through my fingers and back through between my hands as I drift through consciousness. I’ve found that I get better readings when I don’t have a specific question then when I try to get the cards to “tell me something” – I just let them talk to me.

32 Moon 8 Hearts is Card 5 – the middle card – the focus of the reading. After months of being artistically blocked, I am once again working at my poetry and my artwork and other writing projects – I am getting up before dawn to work. I am also baking bread and thinking of other creative things to cook. My life seems to be bursting with creativity and I am working harder than ever. And I am loving my work!

30 Lily + 11 Whip + 28 Man is my past – I always read this as resent past, within the last twenty-four to forty-eight hours. At first glance, I really can’t make any sense of these cards together but I will take a guess – I’m always guessing! – and say that these three cards refer to the maturing man in the house – my son, James – and how he is increasingly in charge of things.

20 Garden + 32 Moon + 23 Mice is my future – I read this as “what’s happening today” – and this tell me that having to go out into the world (running errands) will cut into my ability to work today, since getting around Buffalo on public transportation takes up so much time.

16 Stars + 5 Tree + 4 House is my future – which I take to mean as the near future, tomorrow or the next day – I will be focusing on my health and well-being and doing things at home.

That seems really straight-forward and to the point, doesn’t it? When I first started reading Lenormand cards, I was obsessed with getting the perfect reading, the correct reading of the cards and the most precise reading but now I realize that I could read these cards today and get a certain reading and then read these same cards tomorrow and see something different. There is no true correct reading. There’s only the reading that resonates for you.

After I read all aspects of the Portrait Spread and make notations in my Lenormand Journal, I put the cards and the journal away for the day. Later in the evening, I get the journal out and see how closely the cards predicted the day and remind myself of tomorrow’s prediction.

When you have been doing a spread like this for say – two or three weeks – a month, tops – look through your readings and see what cards have been showing up most often. This past month, I have been seeing 32 Moon 8 Hearts, 26 Book 10 Diamonds, 5 Tree 7 Hearts, 6 Clouds King Clubs, and 33 Key 8 Diamonds more than any of the other cards. Given that my focus has been on creativity and writing and just how to get going on my novel again, I think these cards really show my struggles with those issues.

I really like this spread. It takes a bit of time to do but the more I do it, the easier it gets to read the cards. For me, I think the trick is to read the cards quickly
“First thought, best thought,” as Allen Ginsburg famously said – put the concepts together into a coherent thought and go with that. The more I ponder the “meaning” of the cards, the less meaning they actually have. I get lost in layers of implication and nuance and end up confused and frustrated. So I have found that the first thought that pops into my head when I am looking at a group of cards is generally the one that I should listen to.

And like I said before, there is no true correct reading. I haven’t been keeping a Lenormand journal long enough to see this in action, but I can tell you that when I look through Tarot journals from ten, twenty, thirty years ago, I can see where I made rookie mistakes but also where I was spot on – even as a beginner! Your journals are a great learning resource, even years after the reading. And it’s fun to relive whatever drama was going on at the time! And be grateful for the happy serenity I enjoy right now.

Until next month, Brightest Blessings!

References

Matthews, Caitlín. The Complete Lenormand Oracle Handbook: Reading the Language and Symbols of the Cards. Rochester, VT: Destiny , 2014.

The Complete Lenormand Oracle Handbook: Reading the Language and Symbols of the Cards on Amazon

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About the Author:

Polly MacDavid lives in Buffalo, New York at the moment but that could easily change, since she is a gypsy at heart. Like a gypsy, she is attracted to the divinatory arts, as well as camp fires and dancing barefoot. She has three cats who all help her with her magic.

Her philosophy about religion and magic is that it must be thoroughly based in science and logic. She is Dianic Wiccan and she is solitary.

She blogs at silverapplequeen.wordpress.com. She writes about general life, politics and poetry. She is writing a novel about sex, drugs and recovery.

Retha’s Crystal Reflections

July, 2018

The Power of Quartz

Ah quartz…my very favorite crystal type. I get excited about every single piece of quartz I own. Hopefully after reading this you will get excited about your quartz too, despite how small or humble your piece, it is a powerful tool! The variations are endless, each piece is unique in its exact formation, it’s colors and it’s inclusions. I wear & work with quartz every single day. I hope you will too after learning more about this treasure!

Quartz is silicon dioxide. It is a mineral that is composed of silicon & oxygen atoms. It has a hardness of 7 on the MOHS hardness scale. Quartz is the second most abundant mineral in the earths continental crust, behind feldspar. Quartz belongs to the trigonal crystal system. The ideal crystal shape is a 6 sided prism terminating with 6 sided pyramids at each end. In quartz crystals silicon and oxygen atoms are joined in a tetrahedron (4 sided triangular pyramid). Linked in spirals, they can be left or right handed. This structure accounts for quartz piezoelectricity. Pressure on a quartz crystal causes positive and negative charges across it (piezoelectricity). It was discovered that alternating electrical charges cause a piezoelectric crystal to vibrate, the basis for quartz use as oscillators to control radio waves or keep time. 

Quartz crystals have many commercial uses in fact. Quartz is used in watches and clocks and in a wristwatch vibrates more than 30,000 times per second! They are also used in computers, microwaves, TV, radios, medicine, credit cards, and industrial tools. In electronics they can change a mechanical force, such as a blow from a hammer, into electrical energy. 

Quartz crystals are valued for their beauty. They are often used in jewelry. Clear quartz is often called rock crystal.  The Quartz family includes many many varieties. By color, some are Amethyst (purple), Citrine (yellow), smoky (brown/black), rose (pink) and tangerine quartz (orange).

Beyond these, there are varieties named for their growth patterns or their mineral inclusions/occlusions. An inclusion is a deposit of another mineral within a quartz crystal. It radiates the energy of the mineral, focused and amplified by the quartz surrounding it. Some named for their growth patterns include sceptor quartz, faden quartz, nirvana quartz, elestial quartz, skeletal quartz, and cathedral quartz. 

Some examples of ones named for their inclusions are lithium quartz, rutilated quartz, golden healer quartz, hematoid quartz, mosaic quartz, harlequin quartz, shamans dreamstone, and phantom quartz. Phew….just to name some!! Then there are also many types that are named for their location of origin, such as Tibetan quartz, Vera Cruz amethyst, Congo citrine, Lemurians and herkimer diamonds! 

 

Properties of Clear Quartz

These are the properties of clear quartz. Keep in mind even within clear quartz the properties vary depending on the formations and inclusions mentioned above. Since quartz is a magnifier, it will magnify the properties of whatever the other mineral is, whether its within the quartz or growing with the quartz on the matrix. Clear quartz is the most powerful energy amplifier the earth due to its helical spiral crystalline form. It can absorb, store, release, and regulate energy. It raises energy to the absolute best state possible and is an amazing healing crystal because it goes back to your pre disease state. It acts as a soul and body cleanser as it cleanses the organs and the soul and connects the physical 3-D with the mind and soul. It can be used for any condition and is a master healer. 

Clear quartz stores info like a natural computer program. You can program quartz to take on the properties of any other crystal, and it acts as that crystal until you deconsecrate it for that purpose. Quartz is the ultimate crystal to keep in your arsenal. While I definitely enjoy having crystals at hand in all varieties, and I appreciate working with every minerals unique energy, if I could only have access to one crystal, it would 100%  be a nice piece of clear quartz. Hands down. 

Quartz can also be used to enhance psychic abilities and can attune you to your spiritual purpose. It also aids concentration, and unlocks memories. It helps to harmonize all the chakras in the body too.

Crystal healing is an ancient practice. It is thought that as light reflects off crystals the electromagnetic field of the body (the aura) then absorbs that energy. Then areas of dis-ease can be pinpointed and then healed. If you have a nice clear piece of quartz, you can use it as a scanner, running it down over the body while looking through the quartz to see areas that need healing. 

Wearing clear quartz daily is an excellent way to raise your overall vibration, as well as to amplify the other crystal jewelry you are wearing. You can also program your quartz jewelry to support specific intentions or energy streams. Doing this at the new moon is a great practice to incorporate into your routine. Having a lot of clear quartz in your home is an effective way to raise vibrations in your space. Spheres, generators and clusters are great choices. Not to mention they make beautiful additions to any decor. One place I would not recommend putting clear quartz is in the bedroom. Clear quartz can be disruptive to your sleep. Amethyst on the other hand is a great option within the quartz family to place in your sleep space.

It fascinates me that while quartz is widely available on every continent, there are some types that only grow in one place on the entire earth! Such as herkimer diamonds. Isn’t that incredible? I am lucky enough to be going to the Herkimer Diamond Gem Show this month as well as going mining in herkimer, NY while I’m there. Its been on my bucket list for awhile and I’m so excited! I will be writing an article all about my experiences in Herkimer. It will be in September’s column. I hope you will come back and check it out! In the meantime, I hope you learned something new about how truly magical clear quartz is and I hope this inspires you to get your quartz out and work with it! 

Crystal of the Month: Lemurians

First, a little background information. Lemuria was an ancient advanced society that pre-dates even Atlantis. It was also known as “Mu”. Lemuria was lost and sank to the bottom of the sea in a natural disaster long long ago. The Lemurians were wise energy workers. Lemuria was a civilization celebrating oneness, unconditional love, cosmic connection, humanity as a whole and healing. It was a matriarchal culture. Toward the end of the lemurian civilization, the physical beings were aware that a great change was coming. They set about to find a way to store their precious, vast knowledge on earth for later discovery. Its believed during the last 300 years or so, they were preparing for a cataclysm. Record storage was downloaded into seed crystals. They were then placed into the earth for later discovery. In these crystals, there are bar code like lines that are said to help you to download these important messages that were laser imprinted by this advanced race of beings. The key is in being able to touch these situations. 

Lemurian crystals are clear quartz points that are easily identified by the horizontal line patterns, or striations, that are present on some of the point faces. They resemble bar codes and are sometimes referred to as the “stairway to heaven”. These striations can be seen but more importantly FELT. If its a lemurian seed crystal, it will have the striations on alternating faces, or on 3 of the 6 faces. If its a lemurian, it can vary which faces the striations appear. Striations usually end in a triangular face, forming the apex of the crystal. Some are frosted or matte in appearance, while others are very clear. There are also lemurian root crystals, which grow beneath the seed crystals and are the rarest of the lemurian types available to us. They are covered in sacred markings such as shamans portals and are exceptionally clear. 

Lemurians can come in clear, smoky, pink, tangerine, and golden in color. They come in all sizes but should be in a wand shape tapering from a thicker base to a thinner point.

The first mention of Lemurian crystals was in the early 90’s and they were coined in a newsletter by Katrina Raphaell. She claimed that true Lemurians only came from one location, the Diamantina mine in Minas Gervias, Brazil. Others now believe that they can come from multiple places in the world. Hawaii for example is said to have a very strong Lemuria connection. I invite you to research this topic further and decide for yourself which school of thought resonates with you. 

Its believed that these crystals will find the right “keeper”, and when that keeper connects with it and starts working with it, the messages of ancient higher wisdom are then downloaded into our subconscious. The information can then be accessed by us when we are ready for their wisdom. I like to ask my new lemurian crystal prior to working with her for the first time, to please bless me with their guidance for my highest good and the highest good of mama Gaia. 

Lemurians are excellent tools for many purposes. They are perfect for energy workers, crystal healers, lightworkers and Reiki practitioners. Lemurians are believed to carry care or healing instructions for mother earth, and so of course are master healers for humans as well. They can’t be beat for personal healing tools. 

Another use is to use it during meditation. You can put the striations against your third eye, or by running your index finger on your left hand against the lines. They are considered to be a communication tool between us and the cosmos. These crystals are attracted to the people who will aid the planet in these times. 

Yet another use is in dreamwork. For greater access and recall to our dream state. Investigating your dreams aids in discovering your souls journey. 

You can use Lemurians to form a protective circle by holding the crystal in your right hand and encircling the person, room or location. 

Whichever way you choose to work with your lemurian know that the more you work with it the more powerful it will become. I could talk about Lemurians all day, but I hope this overview sparked your interest and you get a lemurian crystal to try!

Thanks for spending time with me this month and I wish you all many crystal blessings!!

XO Retha

Resources

The crystal bible-a definitive guide to crystals by Judy hall

Eyewitness crystal and gem by Dr. R F Symes and Dr. R R Harding

Sage Goddess blog “how to work with lemurian quartz crystals”

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About the Author:

Retha N. Lent has been married for 17 years to her husband Mark & they have four cats that are their life. She lives in Norristown, Pa. Retha has her Bachelor’s of Science degree in Behavioral Counseling Sciences from Drexel University. She is the owner of “Retha’s Crystals” & sells sterling silver unique crystal jewelry & specimens on her FB business page. She has a FB group for her customers and those interested in learning more about crystals & all things magical called “Retha’s Crystal Circle“. She is also an advisor in the Sage Goddess Affiliate Program. She has her Holistic Healing Certificate and Pillars of Priestessing certificates from Sage Goddess. She is also an Ordained Pagan Minister from the Universal Life Church. Retha has a passion for crystals, nature, astrology, working with moon cycles, ritual practices, tarot and oracle cards, runes, essential oils, herbs, manifestation work, ancient cultures, magic & music. Her favorite place is New Orleans, La. Retha has an extensive personal crystal collection and loves sharing her love of crystals with the world. She has been a practicing pagan since she was 16 years old. 

You can reach her at rethalent@hotmail.com or on her business page on FB: https://www.facebook.com/Rethas-Crystals-197411227666484/

Or in her FB group:

https://m.facebook.com/groups/1960619300929876

Her Sage Goddess affiliate link is:

www.sagegoddess.com/ref/84/

Or follow her on Instagram at @spookygirl16