Sunday, August 31, 2014

Asking about Life

Lately I've been thinking about the expression "being your own best friend". I've heard it a lot over the years but never really stopped to think about it in much detail.  I thought it would be interesting to ask the cards this month what it means to actually be your own best friend, and how to accomplish that. So that is just what I did here. 

I used The Gendron Tarot for you here, by Melanie Gordon. The Gendron was one of the first decks I got and still very well loved. Just a beautiful deck all around that works beautifully.

I asked: 

Question 1: What does it really mean to be your own best friend?
Card 1: Prince of Pentacles

The answer here starts with a Pentacles card. Pents for me are about the goals we set and the best ways to work on achieving them. Princes, the way I read, are about empathy. They're about really trying to understand what it's like to be another person, to walk in their shoes, to have had the life experiences they had in their past, to look for the similarities between you and not the differences. All that is what the Princes mean to me.
And I think that's a nice way to start this reading. This card is saying that being your own best friend means that you make it a goal and a priority in your life to be understanding towards yourself and show yourself some real warmth. To look at yourself and all you do kindly and with understanding. To not be judgmental but to see the big picture. And to understand it. What naturally leads to what and how it all fits together. To see how where you've been in the past is affecting you today.  And to accept it all just as it is. We all have pasts, we all have things that affect us. it's all just part of what it means to be human. Accepting the time things need to take and allowing things the time they need.  

The message here is about showing yourself patience.  And about treating yourself as well as you could wish for anyone else to treat you. To try to bring yourself joy, not pain whenever you can. Just as you would prefer others in your life to do so. 
This card is saying a lot about respecting the natural balance of things. And of all that is going on inside you. Keeping things in balance is important. It's also talking about seeing things clearly and not confusing your ideas that you have inside about something with that actual things. Sometimes they aer not the same. The message is about not being afraid to forge new roads, find new ways to put difficulties behind you. This card is saying that may mean turning your back on some of the ideas you may have been taught in the past, and finding what feels true and real to you personally
And just plain splashing around in life and in nature and really being in the moment and feeling the joy.  

Card 2: 7 of Pentacles (reversed)

Here is another Pentacles card for you, about your goals. And this one is a reversed 7, which is really all about feeling faith and hope. 
This card is saying that making it a goal to have faith in yourself and to be optimistic in what you can achieve are also ways you can be your own best friend. This is part of what it means too. 
Which makes a lot of sense actually. If you can imagine two very different people. One who really believed in you no matter what and consistently saw the best in you. And a second who always expected the worst from you, expected you to fail, and/or had very little faith in you. If you had the choice, which of these people would you prefer to be friends with? 
The good news is that you do have that choice. Be the person you would choose to be with, even with yourself. And that is what it's all about. Even if you're not in the habit of it, things can change and habits can be broken.
This image is saying to me, corny as it sounds, ...we reap what we sew.  The way we think about and talk about ourselves does affect our lives and who we are and become.  If we know who we hope to be , how we want to feel and what we want to become, it makes sense to treat ourselves in the ways that will encourage us to get there.  

Someone said something to me tonight that stuck in my mind. That if you are not being your own best friend or not talking to yourself as nicely as you deserve to be spoken to (and we all deserve that) then they asked what are you hoping to achieve when you do that. And is how you are talking to yourself actually working and helping you achieve it. If not, maybe it makes no sense anymore to keep doing it.
Card 3: flipped Temperance (reversed)

This card is the most important one in Question 1. It is both a Major Arcana card AND a reversed card. That says that there is a very important life lesson tied in with the meaning of the card here. It is also a flipped card which says that there is a depth to the message here. And that if you stop and think about it you may well see deeper levels to it. 

Temperance is about keeping things in balance. Moving slowly and taking care. It's planning and thinking things out before you create change. And just balance, not too much of one thing not to much of the other.
What this card is saying here is that being your own best friend means taking things slowly. And being patient with yourself. Not expecting too much of yourself too quickly, but respecting the process and the natural timing that things are meant to take.

This card is saying that being your own best friend means taking the time to really see and understand what is going on inside you (as you can see in the image, the woman is transparent). It's about allowing yourself to feel your connections, accepting them not rejecting them in any way. Looking for and appreciating what is really good inside you and your talents. Encouraging new thoughts and letting your mind expand. Growth and expansion and learning to become more and more of what you are meant to be in this world. Whatever that is that is the best you can be, encouraging that inside yourself no matter what.
Gradually spreading your wings more and more and more. And opening being your own true self.  

Question 2: What are the best ways to be your own best friend?  
 Card 1: 10 of Swords

This first card to Question to is a Swords card, about your thoughts. And about the way you think. The 10's represent, for me, the most of something it is humanly possible to have. So the 10 of Swords is about really putting a lot of thought into something. Thinking of what it really means to you, what it would mean to you in your life. It's also about making an effort to pay attention as much and as often as you can, at least at first. So you see what's going on and how it's been working for you.
So, according to these cards, the first step in "becoming your own best friend" is to watch your current thoughts about yourself as much as you can and to watch where you are now in your life, related to this. And then to really think If where you are is where you want to be, why or why not, what do you want to be in regards to this issue and how can you best get there...
This image says to me that the first step is to be open and honest with yourself about where you are now. Look to see the hidden ways you think that you may not have been aware of and see how they affect you. This image says that really, it's about seeing yourself as the graceful, seamless and beautiful being that you are. It's about seeing yourself as a true part of nature and of this world. And knowing that the sun always shines warmly on us, even when it's hiding behind the clouds. On all of us equally. That is the way of the world. Why treat ourselves less than warmly?
Card 2: 2 of Pentacles (reversed)

Here is another Pentacles card. And it's a reversed 2. Pentacles are really all about our goals. About what we hope to accomplish and how we are going about the act of accomplishing it. A reversed 2 is all about acceptance. It's about total and complete acceptance of the things that we cannot change. And also at times the card can be about seeing things in new ways, through new eyes.
So what we have,.in the second card here, is really a message about self-acceptance. This card is telling you that one thing that is necessary to being your own best friend is to really accept yourself just exactly as you are now. That doesn't mean that if there is something that you would like to be different about yourself that you just give up and don't try. Of course nothing and no one is perfect but positive change is almost always possible. 
The message here is more that although growth and improvement may be part of the human experience and part of your life plan (life is change after all, nothing stands still) that It you are fine with yourself at each stage all along the continuum.  And that if you can do that, accept yourself fully at each stage in your life, you will go far towards being your own best friend. If that involves a change in the way you currently see yourself, then that is also part of the message here.  

The image shows a number of masks in it. The woman here is wearing them and there are two more near the bottom of the image. This says that this involves taking off any "masks" that you may have been wearing or carrying around since childhood (meaning anything that hides who you really are from yourself or makes you appear differently than who you actually are. And all the dripping icicles in the background say that to be your own best friend you need to leave any coldness in your feelings for yourself behind you and step away from that as much as you can. Just leave it behind.  Find your inner strength (we all  have it), embrace and love it.

Card 3: Princess of Wands (reversed)

And this last card, is the Princess of Wands. Wands are about creating, about what we are capable of creating and what we do create. This is a reversed Princess and that is a very important message. I just truly love the message of this card right here.
It is telling you that when it comes to what YOU can create of yourself and of your life, the choices are almost endless. It is telling you that to be your own best friend means knowing and believing this. It's about embracing optimism about your future, choosing to tell yourself and believe positive things (not negative). expecting good things and good luck to come your way, and believing in happily ever after and that you have what it takes to create that happy life for yourself.  
This makes a lot of sense actually. When we have a friend who is concerned about something in their life, we don't tell them things are hopeless or to expect the worst to come. We try to encourage and show them how to be the best they can be. Of course being your own best friend would also follow that plan.
 The image here says that you CAN believe in yourself as someone who has all the magic you need inside yourself to create more than you can being to imagine. The body of the woman here is just glowing with that magic. (which refers right back to the message from the intro to last month's newsletter here, the message being about if you believe in the extraordinary. And the answer here is that you should, because YOU yourself are someone extraordinary.  

And also that you live in an amazing extraordinary world where the unexpected and even the miraculous can occur at times, and we just never know when it might. Helps to remember that at times.  :-)
Lastly, the beaver in the image to me is about cutting down obstacles and building yourself a place where you feel a home. Beavers cut down trees and makes homes of them. So when it comes to creating a place in your life where you feel really at home and accept yourself as your own best friend, the start to creating it is to knock down any barriers in your way to getting there in whatever form they come. 

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