The cards never lie…

On the evening of the third day of our women moving the edge retreat, Maria and Sarah did a tarot reading on the collective question that had emerged from the centre of our circle during the previous days.

The pattern they chose for the spread was the Celtic Cross, where the central card, represenging what is at the heart of the matter, is crossed by what stands in our way. The horizontal line represents time; the vertical line represents consciousness.

The question: What is the next level of women’s leadership connected to source?

Celtic cross

Central card: What is at the heart of the matter

The tower

The next level of women’s leadership connected to source is breaking out of every structure, every paradigm, every thought form that we’ve known. This is going to be like a divine intervention – the lightning rod that comes through.

This is fundamental change, and it’s shocking. It’s painful, it’s frightening. You don’t have a choice of staying in the tower. You’re evicted.

The old concepts of masculine and feminine as we have known them are shrugged off. From the top to the bottom, from the left to the right, from the in to the out, change. It’s absolutely radical.

Transversal card: what is the barrier to that happening?

Seven of swords reversed

Seven of Swords

The right way up, we call this card the nightmare of perfection. You take care of every little detail, and you have to make sure that everything is perfectly right.

The fact that it’s reversed in this spread means that what’s blocking us is that we’re always looking at the bigger picture! We want to get it all perfectly in the big picture, it’s all very conceptual, it’s all up here in the head: we’ve got to figure it all out, and then it’s going to be OK.

That’s blocking us. Because we’re too ‘up there’ in the conceptual realm. We’ve got to ground it. We don’t know how it’s going to be, but let’s just do it.

Actually, we don’t have the choice, given that the central card is the tower. So the more we are sitting with our heads up somebody’s plough… It’s falling to bits, you guys! Let’s be real, we’re in disintegration.

Upper card: What is visible

Eight of pentacles

Eight of Pentacles

This is the apprentice card.

One way of seeing this is that we are making a new contract. We are starting to learn practices and we are apprenticing to learning a new way.

What the apprentice does is the same thing, over and over and over. It looks really mundane, but that’s how you slip through into the mystery.

It’s the archer who becomes the arrow. It’s not about getting the bulls eye, it’s the act that lets the mystery come through. It’s practice, practice, practice… prototyping – and NOT waiting!

Lower card: What is coming to our consciousness

The Emperor

The Emperor

This is the masculine. This is the king.

So what’s coming into our consciousness is, perhaps, how the masculine worldview is so deeply ingrained in us – that’s one way of reading the card.

But the other interpretation is about creating order. So it’s not about throwing out the masculine, but  about creating a new order. Because that’s what the Emperor does.

We do need form. But we have to create from source. It’s not going to look like the tower. It’s going to be completely different. We’re not going to sit down and design it: it’s just going to come through.

We’re realising – It’s not just about us feeling and loving and being nice to one another. It’s like: “What the fuck are we going to do now?” It’s creating more form. The form and structure are there, but it’s what it serves that makes the difference… It’s going to be new, it’s not like the hierarchy.

This new level  of women’s leadership connected to source is going to have form. It actually does something. There’s a masculine energy. It’s very clear and manifest. It’s out of the fundamental shift represented by the Tower that the form will come through.

Card to the left: what we need to leave behind



We are stepping into a new life. We’re already in a new life!

We’ve been waiting for the judgement call. We’ve been waiting to be awoken to our new lives. There are still a lot of people in this world that feel that they are waiting to step into a new life that somebody else will have made for them. There are a lot of people talking about how bad things are. “It’s really bad, and we need the new life… Someone has to do something about it… ”

And that new life is already here! We’re in this time! This time has arrived and we need to let go of waiting for someone to call us into it.

We have to call ourselves into the new life. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for!

Card to the right: what is the near future we are stepping into

Wheel of Fortune

The Wheel of Fortune

The wheel is turning. Get out of the way, it’s happening anyway.

We are the right people in the right place at the right time. Things are lining up. This is like the slot machine, about to hit the jackpot.

The next level, in terms of our breaking out of that tower into collective feminine leadership, is that all of us have got to be awake to the alignment. So if you’re not aligned, get the hell out of it! And go find the alignment.

Because that’s what we do: when we find that collective space together, we align with source. That’s what’s going to happen. And we will also know our alignment. It will be more visible. We won’t have to think “Am I? Aren’t I?” It’ll just be there.

This is the culmination of the practice we see in the eight of pentacles. This, we know we must do.

Adding the numerical values of all the cards in the spread, we get the hidden message, the river below the river: Forty-one

We start with the One: is the Magician. The new beginning. Pooling all the tools that we have to create magic. It’s a masculine energy, it initiates, it moves forward to the Four: the Emperor, which is giving form; creating the container in which things can happen. And then you add 4+1 to get 5, which is the Heirophant – or perhaps, in this case, the High Priestesses – it’s the new level of wisdom. In Greek, it means ‘to make the sacred visible’. He is the wisdom holder. He brings through and sheds light on the sacred.

It’s interesting to see all these masculine archetypes here. Part of what we have talked about in this women’s circle is the fact that we have mastered the models (thinking here, in particular, of cutting edge models like Integral Theory, Spiral Dynamics, U Theory, systemic constellations, the adult development models of Kegan, Cook-Greuter, etc). We understand how to do that, just the way the men do. And now we are remembering what so many of us have forgotten, during these long years in a world steeped in the masculine perspectives, that other bit, about connecting through our bodies to source. We do come through a masculine lens, no matter how much we’d like to think that we don’t. But the feminine is not some sit-around, wishy-washy do-nothing. She is a sassy chick – there is oomph to this! You get out there, talk through the bullshit and get it done! That’s part of what’s being shown to us.

In Greek mythology, you’ve got Heracles. Everybody thinks of Hercules as the big strong guy. In the feminine goddess history, ‘Heracles’ means ‘the one that does what Hera tells him’. Hera, in the masculine mythology, is the nagging wife of Zeus. But Hera is the feminine. So the masculine that does the bidding of the feminine is very powerful. We are talking about source. It’s for us to come through in a very clear way. It’s not about becoming something that we are not. It is time for us to come forward with this presence that we are holding.

We can see how we have been initiating (Magician) and bringing together the skills that we have in order to hold space – create the container (Emperor) in which all of these things can happen in order to shed light on the sacred.

Piece of advice – To help us step into this new level of leadership.

Three of Wands, reversed

Wands are creative energy. Three is a number that brings things together to really move forward and manifest in one direction. This is reversed, so we read this card as: “Let’s not put all our eggs in one basket”. There’s going to be many creative forms of the feminine coming from source that can be manifested in the coming time. The tailor-made, off-the-shelf version is not going to work here. It’s going to be different, and that’s fine. There are going to be many different levels and layers to how it needs to be offered. So let’s not try to centralise it, trademark it! Open Source! Because this is a reversed card, it means that sometimes the creativity can get diminished, because it’s not pulled together.

When we get a piece of advice that is reversed, we pick another one until we get one that’s not reversed. Sometimes this tells us the journey we may have to go on.  So we picked another card, to see how we can heal the reversal.

Ten of Pentacles, reversed

In order to reverse that Three of Wands and get that creativity lined up, we are going to have to be extremely untraditional. We’re going to have to not do what the family has always done before, we’re going to have to be extremely different. However, it’s still reversed. Because it’s reversed, it means we’re not going to manifest the level of karma/potential that we can.

King of Pentacles

This guy is the personal level of the Emperor. He’s the manager. The one that creates order again, but on the personal level. There is a very strong message that’s coming through here, that the masculine really has to do its work. But doing its work gives form to the feminine. This is what we’ve been sensing during these days. We need to have form for the feminine to emerge in our world. For the source to be spoken – to be made explicit. Giving it language, having a model, inviting a gathering…

About iyeshe

Woman returning to the wild. Cunning linguist, mother of twins, witch, host, harvester, spaceholder for the dawning Aquarian age, evolutionary wooden-spoon wielder, self-mitigating carbon footprint, wannabe holon in the forthcoming collective buddha...
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