Tuesday 13 March 2012

Caitlín Matthews | Wisdom of the Seasons


Following our theme of time, let’s use the whole deck to look at the year ahead.  In this spread, you find the four keys of wisdom that will help you get through the year to come.   It’s a good spread to do at New Year, when you reached a threshold of change, or when you make a new beginning.  Use the whole deck to discover these keys, but only read 6 cards. Take your time.

1. Write down the seasons on small pieces of paper:

Spring     Summer       Autumn      Winter

2. Shuffle your cards and take out the topmost and bottommost cards and set them aside unseen.  These two cards are the advocates of your reading and you will consult them later.

3. Now deal out the remaining 76 cards into four piles under each category.   There will be 19 cards in each pile.

4. Look at your 2 advocate cards and add their numbers together: e.g. 10 Wheel + 2 Bows = 12.  (If you get a number higher than 19, then add the numbers together again e.g. 20 The Great Bear + 9 Arrows = 29  2 + 9 = 11.)

5. The sum of your advocate cards will give you your keys.  Taking each of the four seasonal packs in turn, count down the same number of cards – these are the cards you will read.  Take them out and place them face up on the four piles.  Below is a brief example, showing the season as well as the key cards drawn.

6. Read the card that arise.  If it’s not clear, you can look down into the unused cards in each seasonal pack to find clarification, or to enhance, rectify or open up a spread.

7. Finally read the advocate cards: they reveal the support that will help the keys be effective. You can also note the major card that accords with the number of their sum: if  it’s 14, then Balance is an underlying theme throughout the coming year.

Example:        10 Wheel + 2 Bows = 12                         ADVOCATES
Spring            Summer               Autumn      Winter        SEASON
Ace Bows     8 Vessels          13 Journey     10 Arrows   KEY CARDS

The four keys open up the year in the following way:

Spring:    The Ace of Bows is the creative key that opens the spring.  A time to focus on ideas and plans, to get things started.

Summer:  8 of Vessels offers a reassessment and regrouping of aims and objectives.  All that’s been stored up has a chance to be used to its fullest potential.

Autumn:  13 Journey is a major key, marking the end of a way of doing things. An old activity or even work comes to the end of a phase.  It’s time to clean away what’s outworn.

Winter:   10 Arrows is a key about the passing on of wisdom. As this woman is in her sixties, it maybe that there is an opening here for her knowledge to be transmitted. 

In summation, this woman’s 2 advocate cards total 12 – the number of the XII The Mirror.  The coming year may well be frustrating or feel a bit stop-start, or else, she could be giving time to develop something special. If she allows herself to go deeply into the vision of what she wants to achieve, then the advocate cards will support her.  The Wheel shows the Moon and Sun shining upon her plans and efforts while the 2 Bows takes a definite stand.  The woman is saddened that there are no stones in the reading, as some more money would be useful.

She is interested in knowing more about the 13 Journey card and we look down into the Autumn pack to find the nature of it. We look at the 2 cards that were either side of the chosen card: 6 and Ace of Arrows.  This reinforces The Journey card, showing that something is passing away or must be done in a very different way, and that this will help breathe new life into her year.


Three factors shape our lives: Fate, Destiny and Free Will. Fate is that which we cannot alter – e.g. our place of birth or basic physiology.  Destiny is that which lies potentially within each of us: e.g. the gift of art that can develop, with practice, until we attain artistic expertise, or that can simply remain a pleasant hobby.  Free Will is about the choices we make for ourselves, the game we play with what we are given (both our Fate and the potentialities of our Destiny) and where we centre ourselves in any issue as a result of it.

1. Shuffle your issue into the cards.
2. Lay out the cards in the following pattern. The meanings for each are given below.
3. Choose card 6 from anywhere in the pack as the Wild Card.
  3. The inescapable       5. The choice I make    4. The resources
                                1. The issue
                           2. My immediate reaction to the issue
                                            6. The Wild Card
1.  The issue itself or what it has brought.
2.  How you react to the issue – what you are carrying about it.
3.  The inescapable bit that you will have to deal with. This is where Fate takes its due.
4. The changes to be made about the issue. This is where Destiny takes a hand and offers you resources
5. The choice I make. What you choose to do about the issue.
6.  The Wild Card: that which can influence and change things beyond your fate, destiny or free will.

A young woman who is going for an interview looks at the prospects.
                   3. 8 of Stones    5, Knight of Arrows   4, Ace of Bows                         
                              2. 7 Stones
                                                1. Ace of Vessels
                            6. 9 The Hooded Man

1. Ace of Vessels:  If she gets this job, it’s a wonderful creative opportunity.  It would feed and nourish her deeply.
2. 7 Stones:  She yearns for the healing that this recognition would bring. She’s been battered by the job market.
3. 8 Of Stones: It would involve hard work but also the use of her skills.  To make her mark, like the hand-print here, she cannot avoid good preparation.
4. Ace of Bows: The resources she has at her disposal include a real enthusiasm. It’s important that she lets this really shine out and not be afraid of generating some interest by showing what’s she got.  It’s not a time for modesty.
5. Knight of Arrows: The choice to stand by her deep seated values and beliefs is central to what she does at the interview.  The interviewers are looking for honesty and commitment, and simply agreeing with them won’t be enough.
6. 9 The Hooded Man: The Wild Card of the Hooded Man suggests that this interview may be a process of scrutiny and that, in the last analysis, being true to her own nature will make her stand out.

copyright: Caitlín Matthews 2012

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