‘A Fire Blazes through the Forest, fed by the Winds of Change as Death’s scythe moves swiftly to clear the undergrowth and pop open seeds for a Sustainable Future!’

The metaphor of wind feeding the fast moving fires, arises out of the two suits that dominate the reading; 4 cards in the suit of Swords, Air, and 4 in the suit of Wands, Fire. There are no cards from the suit of Disks, Earth, (as was the case last year as well) and none from Cups, Water. It’s as if everything is being stirred up as pure energy and we are being prevented from solidifying solutions too quickly. We will be hard-pressed to stay grounded (Earth) in our hearts (Water) and not let the destruction, especially actual wild fires, get out of control.

Everything is paired up. Victory and Defeat, 2 Majors, 1 female and 1 male court card, 2 Gemini cards, and the 4 to 4 mentioned above. The way opposites were joined in the past, by the good/ bad, right/wrong, powerful/powerless dynamic is being severed by Death and The Lovers redefine the great reunion of opposites as compliments in the dance of life.

The most glaring reality is that Death holds sway in the heart/solar center of the reading, making it all too clear that propping up the old systems, institutions and beliefs will only bring more actual death and destruction.

Using The Tree of Life Kabalistic Layout. Sephiroth means position on the Tree

1) Sephiroth:The Crown, Card:6 of Wands“Victory”

The key here is to understand the true nature of victory as opposed to the power-over concepts of winning, defeating, or conquering.

The essence of this card is rooted in the Leo-inspired passion to make what you love the work you do. This is a win/win option.

Jupiter announces new employment opportunities are everywhere, because every system that is dying needs to be reinvented. Old promises of security are being exposed as false and if you create your own work at least no one can fire you! Leo is also about leadership and courage so this year will be marked by individuals, groups, and businesses engaged in meaningful work and simultaneously creating user- friendly systems.

2)Sephiroth:Wisdom, Card:5 of Swords “Defeat”

As soon as we set out to claim right livelihood, the shadow, Victory’s old partner, Defeat, demands that we listen up, hear and heal the wounds that we suffered under a competitive, greedy, power hungry system.

Venus would like to step into the Aquarian Age with all her beauty and bravery, but she has been severely battered by the patriarchal abuse of her gifts and would like some guarantees.

On an individual level when we aspire to be a unique expression it draws the power away from the ego’s fears of wounding and defeat. If we are being ourselves there is no winning/losing only growing and learning.

In relationships be transparent when you feel like running, give love another chance and you might be surprised at the empathy you receive! There is always a point of challenge but trying to keep everything harmonious by being a superficial, weak Venus will send love packing soon enough! Might as well admit your fears or they will hold all the power.

3)Sephiroth:Understanding, Card:4 of Wands“Completion”

In your life if you are going around in circles in your relationships and nothing is growing, changing, or even being worked on its time to complete that story and move on. The same applies to work and living situations. It is not a time for long drawn out affairs when only frail hopes and fear of the unknown are keeping them alive.

4) Sephiroth:Mercy, Card:THE LOVERS VI (Gemini)

This card is the classic representation of the joining of opposites but it is so mired in old beliefs and prejudices that joy has been drained from the communion cup. Royalty, religion, toxic mythologies and repressive family systems are all present to reinforce themselves by wedding dominant male to submissive female.

This card used to be called decisions or choices and asks us to bring up to date our relationships by freeing them to be channels for love not a function of the state and dysfunctional social orders.

Are you ready to let go of romanticized, commercialized and possessive versions of love and let love itself be your teacher?

5)Sephiroth:Severity, Card: 8 of Swords “Interference”

Now we move to the position on the tree involving revolutionary change called “Severity” and we are met with 8 swords that are blinding us with offers from the pop-culture version of Jupiter. Here he becomes the Gemini genie offering us opportunities for fame, fortune and travel that may have nothing to do with the direction of our inner compass.

Even well intentioned folks can take you off your orbit if you let your mind make all the choices on its own. Keep the ego-mind in check by bowing to the wisdom of the heart before leaping into the fray!

6) Sephiroth:Beauty, Card: DEATH XIII (Scorpio)

Now we have arrived at the center of the tree and Death grins; hungry to devour our past imaginations, our stagnant relationships, and laugh at our pathetic attempts to fool him with new age doublespeak that denies the seriousness of these times. He is serious about getting enough compost to fertilize the birth that ripples through the body of our Mother earth. He is serious about having a good time, so get real, it not a time to bargain for reform, just let go and move on!

7) Sephiroth:Victory, Card:Queen of Swords (Virgo/Libra)

In the position of victory on the tree of life, the Queen appears to take her rightful place as the refined version of Kali. She is shown holding the head of a shaman (Shiva) in one hand and a sword on the other, declaring her wisdom, clarity and vision as a force to be reckoned with. It’s not nice to fool with Mother Nature!

“Victory”, as described in the first card, is in the hands of wise women all over the planet who are doing everything in their power to bring abundance, health, good food and honest work into their communities.

Remember the original root of economics, is oikonomos, meaning household management, and this Virgo/Libra card fits the bill for prudence, fairness, and just use. An example of this is micro-loans for business startups that are finding success even in pockets of poverty. It has been shown that men take the money and the training and leave for the cities, but women almost always invest in their communities.

Her next assignment comes in the form of the impetuous Knight of Wands charging into the 8th station on the wings of Mercury.

8)Sephiroth:Splendor, Card: Knight of Wands (Scorpio/Sagittarius)

As he leaps into the fray with a fiery force he can be blind to the consequences of his actions and fall flat or choose to be guided by the wisdom of the Queen and think before he leaps. The Knight’s old methods of conquest, leaving disaster in his wake to fulfill a quest, need to be reigned in. His energy, enthusiasm, and determination need to have follow-through and a deep purpose that perseveres or he may end up making a lot of false starts.

This card offers encouragement to take action, but thought and planning for the long-term are needed not just seeking glory or victory for its own sake.

Wedding the Knight and the Queen in an updated Lovers ritual would be optimum for this tumultuous time. This union is both within ourselves and with others, gender is irrelevant.

9) Sephiroth:Foundation, Card:6 of Swords “Science”

Here, in the very foundation of the tree, we see the opportunity to redefine “Science” as a holistic practice where mind, heart, body and the environment are all components in any solution. This alchemy will bring a revolution in the medical world by integrating all available modalities to strengthen the natural healing properties and immunity systems.

The gods of science will humbly learn from nature by using the tool of permaculture as a model for agriculture and human communities alike.

In relationships this is a card of integrity as Mercury asks for honest communication and Aquarius reveals a common vision that deepens the purpose of human bonds so we may evolve a more intelligent expression of our emotions.

10) Sephiroth:Kin(g)dom, Card:7 of Wands “Valour”

This card led off the previous year’s reading and it has now worked its way through all the stations to rest in the earth plane. This is a great sign that through all the turmoil of the last year, people across the globe continue to find the courage and resourcefulness to fight for freedom. With flexibility and grace, communities will create site-appropriate, innovative solutions to old problems like renewable energy and new ways to resolve conflict (i.e. restorative justice).

Mars in Leo has taken the authentic purpose of the 6 of Wands and he continues to carve out new ways to be powerful and creative without using force and violence.
We need his will, fierceness and determination as a warrior for life instead of an instrument of death.

Mars is often judged and rejected when he angrily announces his grievances. The fire of anger exists in humans to wake us up to oppressive paradigms. It is a key evolutionary leap for humans to honor that voice and let the Queen; with her calm, earth-based wisdom guide the Knight toward non-violent solutions.

We will see non-violent revolutions sweep the planet as US supported dictatorships are defeated and America’s role in supporting corporate interests over human and natural rights will continue to weaken its power in the world. At the same time courageous individuals and groups will be setting into place life-affirming, non-exploitive modalities so our children and grandchildren will be served by governments of, by and for the people and the earth herself.

America will begin to break up into smaller regions for solutions as begun by San Francisco’s single payer, Healthy San Francisco program, and Vermont’s attempt to do the same.

The negative of this will also be manifest as seen in the state of Arizona where gun-slinging vigilantes reveal the underbelly of racism and ignorance.

Its going to be a hell of a ride, but the beauty of Death is its finality, and make no mistake, this nightmare of empire is almost over.

We will nurture the new world that is within our grasp and already in our imaginations and we will do it with courage (7 of Wands) and real science (6 of Swords) guided by wisdom (Queen of Swords) and right action (Knight of Wands).
Victory is in the hands of the healers, the heartfelt, and the honest! Aho!