Red, Blue & White July 4th Readings

Red, Blue & White Birthday Readings For the U.S.A. July 4th, 2018

Dear Friends, Clients and Subscribers,

As I said in my last Starwise Forecast for this month, I planned to restart my annual Birthday Reading for the United States of America on July 4th. I do my own Tree of Life update Reading for myself on my birthday and I generally think that is a great time to take stock of how you are doing. It is why I offer those 10% discount birthday Readings to you all.

Some of you may be happy to know that there will be no Astrology raps in this email. And, to be honest, even though Astrology has generally a better, more accepted reputation than the Tarot, in many ways I much prefer the work I do with the Tarot.

This year I found it rather difficult to really hone in on the soul and psyche of the USA, when clearly we are so divided and polarized. I then hit on the idea of doing three Readings. One for the Conservative Red contingency of the US. One for the Blue Liberal/Progressive contingency of the US. And then one for the country as a whole, or if you like, for you truly independent ‘middle of the road’ citizens.

The Readings that I performed are my Pentacross Tarot Readings, my short 30 minute Tarot Reading that I do for people. It is a Reading of my own creation. I call it a Pentacross because ‘Penta’ means five, like the five-sided Pentagon, and this Reading has five cards in it.

The card in the middle represents where you are now. The one above it represents what your challenge or blockage is. The one below the middle card represents what can help you. The one to the left represents the past. And the one to the right represents where you seem to be heading in the possible future, based on conditions in the present but, as I say to my clients, can always be changed because we have free will.

Before I continue let me slip in one note of self-promotion here. This short, rather inexpensive, Reading is what some of my clients have been using every month or two or three as a form of ongoing therapy with me.

I am considering promoting this more and have been thinking of offering ‘package deals’ for 10 Readings paid for up front, for $450, saving on the $55 individual Reading price.

If you are interested in those kinds of ongoing therapeutic insights you can contact me about that.

And, by the way, in those short Readings for clients, in addition to the basic 5 cards, we also cut cards for specific questions and/or decisions that have arisen in your life.

Now on to the July 4th Readings:

I personally found these Readings to be really interesting and I hope that some of you may find some useful insights here as well.

First I did the ‘Red’ Reading:

Where the Red contingency is at now: The 8 of Disks-Prudence (center).

Disks represent the element of Earth, concrete, grounded reality. The 8 of disks is balanced, stable, grounded but careful, cautious, not making any sudden moves one way or another. I would say this is one reason they can’t really get anywhere with current legislation.

The Challenge or Blockage: Princess of Cups (top)

The way in which my system works, if you have a positive card in this position then it is representing your challenge, what life is asking of you. If it is a negative card then it represents what is blocking you.

This is not a good card according to my interpretation. Now for you fellow Tarot Card Readers let me say that, according to my understanding and studies, when someone does a Tarot Card Reading the cards will be arranged according to the understanding of the Reader.

Cups are water, feelings, emotions. But the Princess is one of 16 ‘Court Cards.’ I have a distinct way of interpreting these cards but it is an evolution of the thoughts and writings of the man who designed my deck.

To me, they are like distinct personalities. And, like every personality, they have their good and bad sides.

The Princess of Cups is very flowing, and gracious and sensitive and romantic, but based on fear or insecurity, such that she tends to live a bit in her own ‘dream world’, tending to blur the rough edges of life, not really connected to reality as it is.

This would appear to be the flavor of denial that is blocking the Red elements of the nation in being able function properly. Personally, in my understanding, to be in the position of having to be apologists for Donald Trump you are going to have to do a lot of ‘blurring of the rough edges.’

What can Help the Red contingency: Ace of Disks (bottom)

This represents a willingness, a capacity, a desire to ‘make a new beginning’ in relation to concrete reality. ‘Making it Real’ as the saying goes. This is the obvious antidote for the Princess of Cups, and to any client having these cards, I would say that this capacity to make a new beginning in relation to reality wouldn’t be here if you didn’t have the ability to do it.

The Past: 9 of Swords-Cruelty (left)

This card shows nine rusty jagged swords dripping blood from their points. I always tell my clients, however, that it isn’t as bad as it sounds. Swords are the element of Air, mental thinking. The nine of swords is a mental tension arising because of efforts to understand with mind and thinking, and rational, analyzing intellect, that which cannot be understood with mind and thinking and rational analyzing intellect. And yet one tries and tries and tries and tries…..until you get migraines.

Personally, I think the Republican Party starting doing that as soon as Donald Trump emerged as a serious contender in the 2016 Primaries. Trying to figure out what that meant for the Party and for the nation at large. Now they are just hunkering down and trying to be ‘Prudent.’

Possible Future: The Hierophant (right)

This is a big card for you red folks. This is one of the so-called “Major Arcana Cards, ‘ the ones with names like the Fool, the Emperor, The Hanged Man, etc.

When you study the Tarot at the deeper level you learn that these 22 cards are found as 22 Pathways of Initiation on the Kabbalistic Tree of Life, corresponding to the 22 Hebrew letters and the 12 Signs and 10 planets, including the Sun and Moon.

I am considering teaching my Tarot Workshop as online classes this winter, where I will teach all 22 of these cards, Pathways of Initiation. It is quite a profound journey with a lot of insight and information whether you want to be a Tarot Reader or not In the journey we go from the Universe to the Fool.

If you would be interested in such classes let me know as that may influence my decision as to whether I should offer such a course or not.

Now back to this Major Arcana Card. Those of you who have already endured the experience of one of my 2 hour ‘Tree of Life’ Readings have probably heard me say that wherever one of these Major Arcana cards shows up it indicates where an opening has been made in your soul, in your psyche that has allowed one of these archetypes to come in, to create transformation or initiation, from one level of consciousness to another.

These are all necessary experiences in life although, admittedly, some are more pleasant than others.

The word Hierophant means ‘revealer of things sacred.’ And he has the ability to see into the true nature of the soul, beyond the actions/reactions of the personality, gaining thereby, a transpersonal consciousness and an unconditional love.

So it looks like the Red contingency is going to be doing some deep ‘soul searching.’ Now, I always tell my clients when they get this card, that this isn’t necessarily a mellow experience.

I am not sure if you can see clearly in the images above, but when you look at the face of the Hierophant on this card at first he seems kind and beneficent and smiling, but then he can seem mysterious, like he is smiling at a secret joke. He can even seem sinister.

The truth is, the Hierophant loves you, but he knows what he has to put you through to get you where you need to go. In the ancient Mystery Schools of the Mediterranean world, when you submitted yourself to the Hierophant for initiation, you knew you would be transformed by the experience. You did not know whether you would survive in a physical body or not.

I would venture to say that it is only the transpersonal consciousness of the Hierophant, knowing the true needs of your soul, and not just the desires and anxieties of your personality that would enable him to put candidates through such an experience.

That, however, looks like the kind of deep soul searching the Red contingency of the Nation is going to be going through in the times ahead.

I would say they can double down and use the Princess of Cups to blur the rough edges of those pressures and live in their own dream world. Or they can get it together and make a new beginning in relation to reality as it is.

And now for the Reading for the Blue Contingency of the United States of America:

Where they are now: The Aeon (center)

This is another of the Major Arcana Cards. The author of my deck has transformed both the name and the image of the card from its traditional name and image. Traditionally this card is called: Judgment. And it shows angels blowing their trumpets and people getting out of their graves, i.e. the ‘Resurrection.’

The card corresponds to the planet Pluto, and to the Hebrew letter Shin, which is associated with the element of fire. To me this card is a Plutonian Fire Baptism, burning away your previous identity of who you thought you were, so you can be who you really are.

In particular it burns away the thought that you are ‘the thinker,’ i.e. the voice inside your head talking. In this initiation you come to realize that that is not who you are. That is nothing but a computer. Your true being, your true consciousness, is beyond rational thought.

In light of the card representing where the Blue contingency has been in the past we will see that this is a really good and necessary process.

But first to position 2:

The Challenge or Blockage: The Magus (top)

Yet another Major Arcana initiation card. The Magus or The Magician is the initiation that works in two ways. In one way it is where you must seek to know what is your true identity, purpose and will, and through that you discover the true identity, purpose and will of Life or God.

The other way it works is where you must seek to know what is the true identity, purpose and will of Life or God, and through that you discover your own true identity, purpose and will, because at that level they are one and the same, and that is when you can do the real ‘Magic’ you are here to do.

To put it simply the Blue contingency is being asked to really discover who they really are. The urgency of doing this will become apparent as we look at the next three cards.

What can help: 7 of Disks-Failure (bottom)

When I was living in Europe in the 80’s I had to buy a new Tarot Deck and I ended up with a German version of my deck with German names on the cards. Now I have come to really appreciate my German deck. The reason for that is that, with my deck, sometimes the name of the card doesn’t really convey what the card means. Having a German deck most people can’t read the name ahead of time and have to wait until I am ready to give them my interpretation.

With the 7 of Disks I say to my clients that this card is not a totally bad card, but it won’t sound so good. It is called Failure. Doesn’t sound so good does it? But it is a particular situation. It corresponds to Saturn in Taurus. Taurus is the month of May, when the leaves are green, the flowers are blooming, the birds are singing, and everyone is in love.

Saturn is the planet of limitation, restriction, karma, and lessons, and here Saturn has come into the month of May and has turned all the leaves black and dead and dying. But, the only reason there is a sense of Failure is because of the awareness of the potential for the month of May, which is not being fully lived or realized. But there wouldn’t be the feeling of Failure if there wasn’t the awareness of that potential.

So, how does this help the Blue contingency? This is my take on it. First of all, it is a warning. If we don’t meet the challenge of the Magus and get to our true purpose and that of Life or God we are going to end up with this unfulfilled potential.

Because we, myself included in the Blue contingency, can feel the potential of some real power to make changes in this time of potential ‘rebound’ from the horrors of the Trump Presidency. And acknowledging the incredible failure of unfulfilled potential that we would feel if we don’t cash in on that potential can help to inspire us to get our act together.

This is something incredibly important for us to recognize in light of where we seem to be heading. But first, let’s look at where we have been in the past:

The Past: Queen of Swords (left)

This is another of those ‘Court Cards,’ the personalities based on fear. The Queen of Swords corresponds to the lower aspect of the Astrological sign Libra, which in my Readings, I am always quick to acknowledge happens to be my Sign.

Now Libra is always right. It’s true. Even when they are wrong. I always say: “You can ask my ex-wife.”

The Queen of Swords is very intelligent and perceptive and has great qualities of logic and rational analyzing intellect. But she is based on fear, such that she relies too much on her rational analyzing intellect, not trusting a higher guidance or deeper intuitive feeling. In such case she can not only fool other people with her rationalizing intellect, she can even fool herself. That is why Libra is always right even when they are wrong. They say we make good lawyers.

So that is where the Left has been for some time I would say. Intelligent and perceptive but still coming from fear and not really allowing higher spiritual wisdom to infuse our soul and being in our service to our fellow men (and women). Even though we sound really smart.

Now that rational analyzing intellect is being ‘burned away’ by a Plutonian Fire Baptism. I would say that this is happening because the stakes, at this time, are so high.

The question is, and always is, how to we go from here?

Well, where we seem to be heading doesn’t look so great:

The Possible Future: Princess of Wands (right)

Another ‘Court Card’ and thus returning to inhabit another stretch of that river in Egypt we call: ‘Denial.’

The Princess of Wands is leaping naked in a surging flame, pulling a tiger by the tail. She is very ambitious, with great aspirational fiery will energy. But, (there is always a ‘but’ with these cards) she is based on fear such that she is very impatient of opposition. She does not like things to get in her way. Even within her own self.

With my clients I usually follow the above with: “She can be a little B, I, T, C, H, Y.

So, my Blue contingency comrades, I think we can already see the potential and some current manifestations of this. I would say this is not only impatience with the incredible opposition and power structure of the Republican Party and their corporate backers, but also between the Progressive and Moderate Wings of the Democratic Party itself.

If you want a good current example of this go listen to the ‘This American Life’ NPR episode called: “It’s My Party and I’ll Try If I Want To.”

The fact is, if we remain at the personality, fear-based level, and continue to see all foes, blue and red, in the guise of ‘we and they’ and don’t rise above the personality/reactive level and get in touch with our true purpose, will, identity, and magic, then we are going to get bitchy and possibly end up with failure.

I would say that this is the challenge and warning for the Blue Contingency even if they sweep both Houses of Congress in the Mid-Term elections.

And now the ‘White Reading’ for the Nation as a whole:

Where we are now: 5 of Disks-Worry (center)

This card shows five, heavy, lead disks that grind and grate against each other, feeling ‘stuck’ with great tension, with the feeling that nothing can be done to change it. If change is to come it has to come from a whole other level and dimension.

Rather obvious. Need I say more?

The Challenge or Blockage: Art (top)

This, again, is a card whose traditional name has been changed. Traditionally this card is called ‘Temperance.’ The ‘Art’ referred to here is actually the spiritual art of Alchemy, which is for transforming the lead of the Lower Self into the gold of the Higher Self.

This card portrays a phase in the process, where you have to join together the fire and water of your self, the hard and the soft, the dominating and the nurturing. The ability to give and the need to receive. To work on wherever you are out of balance there.

This card corresponds to the higher aspect of the Astrological sign Sagittarius. Hilarion* says that someone born with the Sun in Sagittarius is someone who has developed qualities of honesty, integrity and a moral righteousness.

Their challenge in this life is to not let their devotion to honesty hurt other people by saying things without thinking first. As I say it, they are subject to what I call: “Foot in mouth disease.”

I often, however, refer Sagittarian clients to this card, telling them that traditionally it is called Temperance. But the message here is that the fires of truth must always be tempered by the waters of compassion. Because it is true that compassion without truth is ineffective. But truth without compassion burns. It has to be balanced and integrated.

So America, that is our challenge.

What can help: Death (bottom)

Yes, some dying would be really good for us.

This is the initiation that corresponds to the Higher Aspect of the Astrological sign Scorpio. Basically, this is the death of the attachment of your identity to your old emotional patterns of feeling, and desire and identity so that you can connect to the deeper inner heart feelings of your Higher Self. A kind of Death and Rebirth.

And America, this card wouldn’t be here if you didn’t have the ability to do it.

Where we have been in the Past: The Prince of Cups (left)

This ‘Court Card’ is actually the lower, personality aspect of the Astrological sign Scorpio. He has an appearance of calmness, relaxedness and imperturbability, but for whom that is really a mask, hiding what underneath are the most intense emotions and passions and fears and anxieties. He is not as ‘cool, calm and collected,’ as he looks. He is stuffing it. And this is something one can do not only with other people, we can also do that with ourselves, to appear calmer than we actually are.

With this card I would say that that Americans have known for sometime that things are not really going well but we have been stuffing the full emotional impact of that. Now, with the 5 of Disks, we just feel ‘stuck’.

And the next question is: Where are we going from here?:

The Possible Future: 9 of Disks: Gain (right)

This is a good card, and believe me, there are a lot of ‘yucky’ cards in the deck you can get. This is a steady growth and gain, moving ahead step by step, in grounded relation to reality as it is.

So it looks like we are heading towards some steady progress out of the ‘stuckness’ of the 5 of Disks. The initiations of Art and Death will remain our challenge and what can help us as we move along but it does look like we are moving into a bit more of a positive phase.

So, those are the July 4th Birthday Readings I am taking time out to share with you on this holiday.

I hope you enjoyed reading about them as much as I enjoyed doing and writing about them.

I do pray for us all to rise to the positive challenges that we all have set before us at this time.

Steffan Vanel