Strength — Three of Swords — Seven of Coins — Russian Tarot of St. Petersburgh

Monday, April 2nd, 2012

Artist: Yuri Shakov


Last night, in an attempt at sleep, I read the entirety of Wang’s An Introduction to the Golden Dawn Tarot. Unfortunately, I found it riveting. I want to try moving towards multiple card readings. I would like to try to remember the stories behind how one card relates to the other. I draw three cards— past, present, future.


The past is Strength. Not that Strength is past, but that physical Strength was the most obvious manifestation of my very-independent Self. That Self has past in the direction of the Three of Swords. The body and one’s apparent independence are ultimately impossible to hold onto. It is best to become less attached to them before necessary. This decreases heartache and increases freedom. The Three of Swords leads onward to the Seven of Coins. Having a child is always the Seven of Coins. I imagine the investment is perpetual, tho one hopes to put less effort into it over time. And I imagine harvest thus:


—hunting for ripe blackberries at the beginning of the season—

among the brambles
not quite out of reach
one sun-kissed drupe
placed upon the tongue
evokes a wash of purple
dripping from the sky
melting over thorns
a be-here-now
of sunlight

in the mouth

15. The Devil — The Russian Tarot of St. Petersburg

Thursday, February 23rd, 2012

Yuri ShakovArtist: Yuri Shakov

[I was shuffling this deck & out fluttered the devil.]

Right-side-up: “Ravage, Bondage, Malevolence. Subservience. Downfall. Weird experience. Bad outside influence or advice. Black magic. Unexpected failure. Inability to realize goals. Violence. Shock. Fatality. Self-punishment. Temptation to evil. Self-destruction.”
Up-side-down: “Release from bondage. Throwing off shackles. Divorce. Recognition of one’s needs by another person. Overcoming severe handicaps. The beginning of spiritual understanding.”


“The Devil’s face resembles Josef Stalin, who ruled the U.S.S.R. for thirty years. His powerful body symbolized the intensity of his power, tattoos represent his power’s criminal nature, and bat wings symbolize its extent. The marshall’s star above him is the symbol of his victories, the horns show the devilish cunning with which he holds his winnings. The two eyes on his chest are the vigilance of the secret police. The Devil’s chains trap a man and a woman, deprived of civil rights.”


Ultimately, the Devil takes on a great amount of responsibility. It is those who have taken on the responsibility of excessive power who have the greatest tendency to be devil-like.


“With great power comes great responsibility,” said Uncle Ben to Peter Parker via Francois-Marie Arouet aka Voltaire, who was disturbed by the sickening abuse of authority and privilege by those in power whilst the poor and deprived starved and suffered around him. Not much has changed.


Voltaire wrote a lot in days when not as many people write when they do now (there were no bloggers in the 18th century) so it is quite possible someone else said it first and Voltaire was the first to write it down, ableit in French. He also wrote “The multitude of books is making us ignorant” somewhere in one of his over 20,000 letters and over 2,000 books and pamphlets.


I believe I have spent enough time reading. It is time, once again, to go outside the book and learn something on my own.

Page of Cups — The Russian Tarot of St. Petersburg

Wednesday, December 28th, 2011

Artist: Yuri Shakov
LWB*: Stewart Kaplan


Interpretation: A studious and intent person. Reflective. Meditative. Loyal. Willingness to offer services and efforts toward a specific goal. A helpful person. Trustworthy.


[I think, from now on, if the LWB is completely at odds with how I generally view a card and has nothing in particular to say about a deck itself, as in this case, I shall cease to quote it, as it adds little to my insight.]


Yuri ShakovI love the Page of Cups. When my mom saw the image I drew for the card, she said it reminded her of Alice in Wonderland. Wonderful! The Page of Cups is my not-quite-rational, dreamy inner-girl-child. She reminds me: Be open to the unexpected. Listen to your intuition. Never cease to dream. And she reminds me to take a fresh perspective— a child-like view— when faced with difficult issues.


A couple of days ago I told my Big Sister I am going to have a baby. Six months is rather far along for just telling her, but we don’t talk often. I didn’t know how to bring it up sooner. I was afraid of feeling judged in one way or another. When I told her she said something like, “WHAT? Now you’ll be Mom’s favorite forever and ever.” Which is silly and she knows it isn’t true: I’m just Mom’s most huggable child. I will have Mom’s favorite grandchild by default: there are no others.


Having a child sets my sister and I down incomparably different paths. She is on the successful-career path and has succeeded, whereas I never quite tried hard enough. I am suddenly, after many years of much goofing-off, on a path of motherhood.


Today when I pulled a card, I remembered to ask a question: How does [my Big Sister] really feel about me having a baby? The answer is: the Page of Cups. Keep an open mind. If I expect a certain reaction, I am more likely to get it. If I expect to be judged, I will feel it. On the contrary, if I am able to be playful, to be open to unexpected feelings, to admit the possibility of a positive change in our relationship, I am more likely to be pleasantly surprised.


*LWB= the little white booklet that comes with most tarot decks
and tells, quite briefly, what each card is about