I'm doing the week-long 'fire' exercise from the Witch's Primer podcast. I'm not really taking things in order, since I was already casting spells a while before I found the podcast, but I figured getting some background work done was a good idea. It's going quite well, except it requires physical exercise - which isn't exactly easy for me! I've never thought of physical activity as spiritual before (being originally from the 'deny the evil body!!' school of Christian thought), but I absolutely see how it can be. I just need to adjust my expectations to my own physical condition. I'm never going to be spending an hour in the gym regularly - not if I want to get out of bed at any point the following day. I *can* work in my garden, go for a wander in my wheelchair, and do other little active things that some people would not think of as activity, but which are active enough for me. (I just said 'active' too many times.)
Combining my twin aims of being more active (sorry) and getting out in the local countryside more, The Girl and I went out into the Peak District last weekend. We are surrounded by some of the most beautiful countryside in the UK, but it's so difficult to access if you're disabled - it's hilly, craggy, and most of moors have inaccessible mountainous paths to get up before you can walk on slightly less hilly ground. However, there are some lovely cycle routes, and it was one of these that we attempted last weekend. We hired a hand-cycle for me (see below!) and The Girl walked beside me. We managed four miles, and had a picnic mid-way. I was *so* excited to be out seeing the countryside first-hand, rather than from a car, which is usually the most that I can manage. Now I want a hand-cycle, of course, and I would have nowhere to keep it. So much fun!
Meanwhile, The Girl bought me a deck of tarot cards. At this point, I should direct you to Fire Lyte's timely post on the subject of tarot, here. I disagree with most of what he says (!) but it's an interesting read. I don't think I like the practice of people reading for others (for some of the reasons he outlines) - but reading for myself, as divination, is fascinating. Learning to interpret the cards is going to be a long process, but for me it seems very like interpreting dream imagery. My concept of the process is that somewhere between myself, intuition, interpretation and the Divine, something a little out-of-the-ordinary happens. Is that so difficult to believe, for those of us who cast spells? I don't in any way believe that the cards have energy - not like I believe that crystals do (and they absolutely do) - but I do believe that something interesting is going on. Just like it does when I'm casting spells, praying for inspiration or guidance, invoking an ancient Irish goddess in a circle that may only exist in my mind, or - for that matter - taking Holy Communion. Can I describe *exactly* what's going on in each of these situations? No. Is something a bit out-of-the-ordinary happening in each of these situations, for me? Yes.
And the first tarot spread I did for myself is below. Heh.