Tuesday, December 13, 2011


so, well - compartamentalization is one thing, but...i'm a graduate student and it is finals week. we all know what's on my mind. so why not read some more on it, eh? multi-tasking for the win, man :D

decided to have a go with the Spanish tarot this time. I must say, Fournier makes some nice card-stock decks if this and the Balbi are any indication. Also, can I say again, how much I love the colors on the Spanish? One of the main reasons I'm so averse to most traditional Marseilles decks is the very primary coloring of them. Some people see that as I plus. Me? Ick. The Spanish, on the hand, makes use of much more complex hues, and they just complement each other so nicely on the cards and...yeah. I do love this deck.

Also, one more related general note: I'm kind of in the process of settling into a good, workable style of reading unillustrated pips. My method has long been just...I lay down the card and an image or images of the card from other, illustrated decks comes to mind and the meanings come to me and I go from there. But after listening to a presentation by Lee Bursten about reading pips using trumps-based method, been experimenting with that as well. By and large, I think I'm settling into kind of...using both. Either. Complementary. Nuances and so on.

so yeah, - two sets of pairs:
The first pair general advice: I have a second paper to do, research and analysis heavy, which I only have an outline of and less than 24 hours to finish final draft. Advice for getting in done, for how to approach the situation, etcc.
Second pair a bit more experimental - insight, ideas, something to consider about the actual CONTENT of the paper which I am writing.

this was an interesting pair as advice because at first it seems more like...disheartening description of my situation than advice. reversed strenght - the feeling that things are out of my control, out of my hands, unsure if I can handle this, if I can actually force out another paper of acceptable quality right after finishing the first. Combined with the more RWS based take on the 8 of Swords, the feeling of being trapped. I have to do this, because I am a student and that means that there are finals that are worth so much of your grade that you must do by certain deadlines regardless of what is going on in your mind or your life, That I must but I don't know if I can find it in myself to tackle that lion again. The swords entwined with each other like bars on a cage...

But of course there is that second layer of meaning to the 8 of swords, the fact that in the traditional imagery, the woman may be blind-folded, and she may certainly FEEL trapped between that cage-like arrangement of swords, and maybe her hands are even bound but: dude, if you are surrounded by frickin swords, you can totally cut away your restraints, sqeeze out in-between the things and you know, be on your merry way. It's only your mind, your own lack of confidence and sense of hopelessness/helplessness stopping you, when push comes to shove. Which takes us to the other way of reading this card, Lee's trumps method: in the Major Arcana, 8 in Marseilles tradition decks is associated with Justice. With equalization, balance, scales, making things right. Right-thinking, we could say, in the 8 of Swords.

So what is the advice here, then? To adjust my thinking. My mind. Organize thoughts, positive thoughts, pro-active thoughts, motivated thoughts, focused thoughts. Right-mindedness. The best way I can help myself is to find some kind of mental equilibrium in my approach to this.

now, not to tl;dr over-much on my very much non-tarot related paper here, but...I am writing about prospects for successful integration of Islamist groups in democratic political systems with focus on post-Arab Spring North African states, comparing Islamist groups in Algeria & Libya with those in Tunisia and Morocco...

and yeah, this is actually QUITE apt, haha. The two of cups represents partnership, doesn't it? Successful synergy of two forces, to people, two ideas, working together, cooperation, 'all you need is love'. This works very well with my basic idea/thesis that yes, it IS possible for Islamists to be part of and even at the head of a democracy without it turning into same crazy theocratic state in the mold of Iran. That events unfolding in Tunisia and Morocco (as well as the exmple of Turkey) show that Islamist and Democracy are not inherently incapatable. Also my secondary idea/thesis, that the degree of extremism and violence espoused by Islamist groups and individuals (ie. progessive radicalization of Qutb, for example) is very much a reflection of the degree of repression and marginalization they face from the state, ie being treated like a partner, cooperation, tends to lead to more moderate stance as seen in Ennahda today...

as for judgement reversed, yeah, just kind of backing that up. Rejecting the widely held auto-assumptions that Islamist groups must be inherently bad, inherently anti-Western and anti-human rights and threat to US security and that repression (or support of repressive allied regimes) is the only option. Also, I think, good to point out the non judgement idea in that like...I'm essentially arguing that Islamist groups should be given a fair chance to peacefully particupate in legitimate political processes. Do I personally believe the ideas they espouse? Well, I'm an atheist and a feminist, really so...at least on the less-moderate end of things, very much no. But the thing about freedom of speech, democracy etc. is...for it to be REAL everyone has to have a chance to have their say and make their pitch, regardless of whether you agree with the ideas they are arguing for.

So yeah, actually that helped me a lot in organizing my core idea :0

Yay to multi-tasking tarot fun times!
(this is kinda like the time I wrote my grad school application essays based off a tarot reading, haha...)


tarotreading said...

I much agree with you about the colors of the Spanish vs. Marseille decks! I'm also just realizing that I generally prefer secondary colors to primary ones, which probably explains that deck style preference (just look at the Two of Cups you posted here).

I especially liked what you wrote about the second pair of cards and how you tied them to the topic of your paper (which sounds really interesting, by the way!).

When I still was at university, I once prepared an oral exam by doing a bibliomancy reading with my reading material and not much else. Judging from the 'A' I got, it seems to have worked just fine.

Good luck for the rest of your exams/papers!

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