Nine of Cups — Renaissance Tarot

Thursday, April 19th, 2012

Artist: Helen Jones

Author: Jane Lyle


A delightful person whom I do not know suggested that when I don’t know what to write, I look at others’ blogs for inspiration. So I read her blog today and paraphrase a sentence and steal a few words. Such are the wiles of the writer.


In spite of my “best efforts,” [none] I’m not able to write a blog nearly as often as I like [every day], given that I have to simultaneously nurse a baby and bounce her up and down [okay not simultaneously] when I’m not nursing her and attempt to nap when she’s attempting to nap and— wait— I just stay home all day. Sigh. Actually, I have very little to do. I stare at my baby. I tell people who are visiting me [bless them!] to do things for me. Mow the lawn! Cook me dinner! Wash the dishes!


I draw the Nine of Cups. Enjoy yourself! [It will only get more difficult.]


Sometimes I sit here and stare at my baby and think, “this is exactly what I’ve always wanted.” The thing is, I never thought about wanting this, exactly. It’s contentment and satisfaction and happiness that I’ve always wanted, tho I haven’t always known it. These things come in many forms. In my experience, goal-oriented happiness-seeking does not lead to the same level of contentment as acceptance-of-life happiness-seeking.


A friend I met while planting trees in Alaska has a Chinese (?) tattoo on her shoulder. When I was twenty-two, I asked what it meant. She said— “It means, enjoy life.” Then, with habitual honesty, she edited herself— “Actually, it means enjoy yourself, but I tell people it means enjoy life because I don’t want them to take it the wrong way.”


I thought, “What is the difference between enjoy life and enjoy yourself?” I prefer enjoy yourself. It is somehow both more immediate and more permanent.


Ten years later, working in Hawaii, I met a native man who’d grown up on Ni’ihau. He had the most pleasant temperament, tho he said when he was younger, he was quick to anger. He loved to tell tales and I loved to listen. Whenever it was time for me to go— for it was never time for him to go— he blessed me with the words, “Enjoy yourself.” I thought of the friend I’d met in Alaska when I was younger. I thought how wise these people are, these people who enjoy themselves.


Enjoy yourself!

Knight of Cups — The Renaissance Tarot

Sunday, February 19th, 2012

Jane LyleIllustrator: Helen Jones
Author: Jane Lyle



Upright: Romantic • Inspirational • Visionary

Reversed: Loss of direction


The Knight of Cups is the Arthurian hero— the grail knight— the spiritual poet— the courtly lover—the romantic artist. Chasing his muse, he undertakes a journey of imagination and creativity through the unconscious. Because he is in love with life itself, he is charming and attractive to others, regardless of their sex. He uses refined, feminine intuition during quests of romance and seduction. Master of following his heart’s inner compass, he makes decisions with little input from his brain and follows the wisdom of his dreams.


In the worst of times, the Knight of Cups jumps to conclusions before looking at facts. He becomes moody, jealous or emotional to the point of incapacity and allows his emotions to control his life.


*   *   *


Tarot of the AbsurdI made a postcard

to celebrate the completion of my deck.

Want one?

Send me a post card for trade

or buy one here.

I also made a stamp of the Knight of Sticks

which is way cooler than the postcard

but Zazzle® won’t publish it publicly

because apparently it glorifies weapons

in a way that is not incidental.

Page ~ Princess of Wands — The Renaissance Tarot

Friday, December 30th, 2011

[I forgot to ask a question again.]

Illustrator: Helen Jones
Author: Jane Lyle


Interpretation: “Ability. Creative beginnings. // …an upsurge of the pace in everyday life. Original ideas, intuitive guidance, a desire to make new friends— all these may spring from inside ourselves. Outer events mirror this energy; there is often an increase in conversations, letters, invitations, short trips and social events.”


How about: I would like an increase in conversations (with friends), letters (from friends), invitations (to visit friends), short trips (with friends) and social events (at my house).


Is grocery shopping or a trip to the doctor’s a short trip? Is traveling to Quebec or Syracuse for the weekend or week a short trip or a long trip? Perhaps the length of the trip is determined by how long the trip feels. “Short trip” is supposed to seem positive whereas “errand” generally seems negative.


Maybe “short trip” means “brief psychedelic experience.” From the on-line urban dictionary: “An adjective meaning cool, freaky, groovy, amazing, or all of the above, depending on the context in which it’s used. …the root word, “trip,” refers to soft psychedelic trips and has been in use since the 60’s.”


When I wanted Martin to consider home birth, I didn’t try too hard to be convincing. I handed him my only book on birth— Ina May Gaskin’s book Spiritual Midwifery— where the natural birthing experience, as described by the husband, is always trippy, other-worldly, and extremely spiritual. After he’d read a bit, he said, “I’d like to experience that kind of energy.” I was happy.


The short trip of birth (as opposed to the long trip of raising a child) will indeed herald new beginnings, an upsurge in the pace of life, and the need to come up with original ideas to solve every-day problems. It will necessitate following my intuition. I hope to make new friends who can help me with these things.


I could, perhaps, have picked another aspect of my life to relate this card to. I’ve used pregnancy a number of times. However, that’s what gets my attention right now. Louann Brizendine, MD, director of the Women’s Mood and Hormone Clinic at the University of California, San Francisco explains pregnancy brain, in part, like this: “There are 15 to 40 times more progesterone and estrogen marinating the brain during pregnancy, and these hormones affect all kinds of neurons in the brain.” And, “You only have so many shelves in your brain so the top three are filled with baby stuff.” Good enough for me.