Lesson 5 – The Daily Reading


The Daily Reading

You are now ready to begin putting your tarot knowledge to work. Lesson 5 describes the Daily Reading. In this reading, you select a single card that becomes your theme for the day. The purpose is to heighten your awareness of one approach to life for a single twenty-four-hour period. It also helps you learn the tarot without strain or tedium.

 Let’s say you have drawn the Two of Cups for a daily reading. As you go through the day, you will watch for signs of this card’s special energy. The keywords for the Two of Cups card are connection, truce and attraction. In the morning, you notice that a colleague, who has been rather hostile, comes to your office to talk. You sense a truce, and you take advantage of it. In the afternoon, while working on a problem, you look for the connection between two approaches and find your solution. Later, at a party, you talk to someone who attracts you. On each occasion, you access the energy of the Two of Cups and allow it to guide your decisions.

At first, you may want to choose your daily card deliberately so you can avoid repeat selections and learn the deck more quickly. If you prefer, you can choose your card without conscious intervention. Here is the procedure:

  1. Shuffle the deck once or twice.
  2. Hold the deck face down in one hand and cover it with your other hand.
  3. Pause a moment to become calm and centered.
  4. Ask your Inner Guide to give you the guidance you need for the day.
  5. Place the deck face down in front of you.
  6. Cut the deck to the left and restack it.
  7. Turn over the top card as your card of the day.
  8. Return this card to the deck, and shuffle once or twice.

This procedure is easy to do on a daily basis, and it gives you an opportunity to connect with your Inner Guide regularly. Choose a time that works for you. Mornings are good because you can pick a card during your wake-up routine. You can also select one at night. You will be ready to put your card to use as soon as you wake up. It isn’t necessary to pick one time since your schedule may change. The main goal is to make the Daily Reading a part of your day so that your tarot work progresses.

Keep a journal of your selections. Later, you will find it interesting to trace the pattern of your choices. I started studying the tarot in earnest when I was spending my days caring for my two boys, then under five. One day I calculated the distribution of my daily cards to that point and found the following:

  • Wands – 24
  • Cups – 44
  • Swords – 41
  • Pentacles – 57
  • Major Arcana – 56

How clearly this describes my life at that time – heavy on the real world (Pentacles) and basic forces (major arcana) and not so heavy on individual creativity (Wands).

In your journal, jot down a few highlights of the day next to your entry. This will help you correlate the cards with your moods and activities; but keep it simple, or you will soon tire of the effort.

I wrote my journal entries using five pens of different colors – one for each category:

  • Wands = Red (Fire, passion)
  • Cups = Blue (Water, moods, emotion)
  • Swords = Yellow (Air, mentality)
  • Pentacles = Green (Earth, growth, plants, nature, money)
  • Major Arcana = Purple (spirituality, higher purpose)

Color coding helps you see at a glance the shifting tarot patterns of your weeks and months.

You will probably be surprised to find that you draw certain cards over and over. Of the fifty-seven Pentacles I recorded early on, I drew the Ace and Queen eleven times each! At home with my children, so many of my days reflected the themes of these two cards. The Queen of Pentacles is the ultimate nurturing mother. The Ace of Pentacles offers opportunities to enjoy the material side of life, and it doesn’t get more material than cleaning dirty diapers!

I picked these two cards so often that I became suspicious about them. I examined them closely one day to see if I had damaged them in such a way that I would be more likely to select them. They appeared no different from the others. I was simply drawn to them because they expressed my situation at that time. The cards you select frequently will also tell you about your concerns.

The most important step in learning the tarot is to take the cards out of the box regularly. The Daily Reading is the ideal solution. If you do one each day, you will absorb the character of each card quickly and easily.

Exercises – Lesson 5

The Daily Reading

Exercise 5.1 – Learning the Cards One By One

You can become more familiar with each tarot card by concentrating on a different one each day. This exercise takes a minimum of seventy-eight days, so it is quite a commitment, but, if you stick with it, you will know the tarot deck very well when you are done.

Decide now how you will choose your daily card during this learning phase. You can be systematic (first the Wands, then the Cups, etc.) or spontaneous. You can pick a card that catches your eye, or one that seems fitting for the day’s events. A single day on each card is enough, but you can take longer, if you wish.

When you have selected a card, read its information page at least once. Write down the keywords, and try to memorize them. They will help you remember the meanings of a card quickly. Study the details of the card’s picture as well. You may want to make a copy of the information page to refer to during the day. I don’t recommend carrying your card around as it could get lost or damaged. Start a journal, if you wish.

Exercise 5.2 – Establishing a Daily Reading Practice

When you have studied all the tarot cards at least once, begin drawing your cards without conscious deliberation. Follow the steps listed in lesson 5. Continue to make entries in your journal, if you have one. After a month or so, calculate the distribution of suits and major arcana cards. Do you notice a pattern that reflects your situation? Do certain card(s) show up frequently? Ask yourself why this might be so.


Calendar of the Moon for May 8

Calendar of the Moon
8 Saille

Agni’s Day

Color: Red
Element: Fire
Altar: Upon a red cloth place a single torch, and light incense of cedar, and a bowl of melted butter mixed with warm milk, which is poured out as a libation during the chant.
Offerings: Speak the truth.
Daily Meal: Hot and spicy.

Invocation to Agni

Lord of the fire that brought us
From savages hunting in the cold
To humans who cluster around the light,
Fire that warms us, cooks our food,
Lord of golden teeth and swift tongue,
You who live in no god’s palace
For you are at home in every home,
Teach us your lesson of truth.
When the storm god, best friend
Of you, the god of lightning’s fire,
Stole a woman and confided only in you,
Fire god, you went and told her seeking lover,
And she was rescued, and you were cursed
By your own friend to be known always
As the One Who Eats All Things.
Yet you held your ground, telling him
That truth is higher in your estimation
Than any bond of the heart,
And to turn your eyes away from wrongdoing
Is a wrongdoing in itself.
Teach us to hold close to your truth,
Truth that burns and scalds and blisters,
Truth that is so painful that it can be mistaken
For some kind of small death.
This is the gift of the Fire God,
Agni the friend to all, who will play no favorites,
Scorch us with your purifying fire.

Fire flow, fire flow through me,
Bonfire, brush fire, lightning strike.

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Calendar of the Sun for May 8th

Calendar of the Sun
8 Thrimilchimonath

Fulla’s Blot

Colors: White and blue
Element: Air
Altar: Upon cloth of white and blue set twelve white candles, one sky-blue candle, a great jug of mead, and a sheaf of grain. Throughout the next eleven days, the altar stays the same, and one more candle is lit. On this day, light the blue candle and one white candle.
Offering: Inventory the food supplies. Do things correctly.
Daily Meal: Soup or stew. Bread with cheese, meat, or jam.

Invocation to Frigga’s Handmaidens

Call: Twelve maidens hold the halls of Asgard!
Response: Twelve virgins hold the pillars of heaven!
Call: Twelve mysteries hold the luck of Asgard!
Response: Twelve virtues hold the Law of heaven!
Call: Twelve words of power resound through Asgard!
Response: Twelve stars light up the dome of heaven!
Call: We call upon the power of Virtue!
Response: We call upon the mysteries of heaven!

Invocation to Fulla

Hail, Asgard’s princess,
Younger sister of the Queen!
Hail, maiden of plenty
Who fills the pots and larders,
Who gives us abundance in all things
That we may in turn give hospitality.
Hail, maiden of the fields
Who makes the grain rise fine and proud!
For abundance is more than mere riches,
It is the careful accounting of fairness
So that everyone gets enough for survival
Enough for happiness
And enough to pass on to others.

Cloth of honor from the thread of truth
Weave your heart into all you offer

(A libation of mead is poured out for Fulla, and the jug replaced for the next day’s ritual. Invite outsiders in for dinner on this day, in honor of the virtue of hospitality.)

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Current Moon Phase for May 8th – Full Moon (Waning)

(waning/180-135 degrees)

by Jan Spiller

A veil of self-absorption is lifted and suddenly you gain access to an unbiased view of others. This is a rare moment when you can see yourself objectively and become aware of whether or not what you want in your heart is actually beginning to manifest in your life. Traditionally, the Full Moon phase stirs emotion, and this is because when you “see” what is happening, you may become upset if you’re experiencing the “same ole, same ole” — rather than the things you would like. If the Full Moon phase is a disappointment, on the next New Moon it’s time to take creative action in the direction of your dreams.

Magickal Correspondences for Tuesday, May 8th

Magickal Intentions: Courage, Physical Strength, Revenge, Military Honors, Surgery and the Breaking of Negative Spells, Matrimony, War, Enemies, Prison, Vitality and Assertiveness
Incense: Dragon’s Blood, Patchouli
Planet: Mars
Sign: Aries and Scorpio
Angel: Samuel
Colors: Red and Orange
Herbs/Plants:Red Rose, Cock’s Comb, Pine, Daisy, Thyme and Pepper
Stones: Carnelian, Bloodstone, Ruby, Garnet and Pink Tourmaline
Oil: (Mars) Basil, Coriander, Ginger

Mars rules Tuesday. The energies of this day best harmonize with efforts of masculine vibration, such as conflict, physical endurance and strength, lust, hunting, sports, and all types of competition. Use them, too, for rituals involving surgical procedures or political ventures.

The Wicca Book of Days for May 8 – Soothing Sage

The Wicca Book of Days for May 8

Soothing Sage

Sage not only has many mouth-watering culinary uses, but is valued by herbalists for its antibacterial and antiseptic properties. Astrogically associated with the zodiacal sign of the Bull, which prevails on May 8, sage is often used to soothe a sore throat, and it is thought that its efficacious action is at least partly due to “Taurus’ influence over the throat. So if your throat feels scratchy and raw and you are finding swallowing painful, brew a pot of sage tea (use 1 ounce of dry sage, or 2 ounce of fresh leaves, to 1 pint of boiling water) to gargle with or sip.

Miraculous Manuka?

If you are prone to sore throats invest in a pot of Manuka honey – check that it has a UMF (unique Manuka factor) rating – and you may find that it’s worth its weight in gold. For many people swear that swallowing a teaspooon or two of this New Zealand honey (neat) works wonders.

New Moon Report for May 8th – Mercury in Taurus

Mercury in Taurus

Tuesday, May 8, 10:15 pm PDT, Wednesday, May 9, 1:15 am EDT

The speedy messenger’s presence in this fixed sign slows down thinking and concentrates minds. We can focus on the basics now, helping to put ideas on a more realistic foundation. Mercury in Taurus isn’t the most creative position for this intellectual planet because it’s rooted in facts and eschews fantasy. It may also take additional time to digest new concepts that require thorough chewing before we’re ready to swallow. Trust, though, can be built with down-to-earth conversations that are grounded in simplicity and expressed with clarity. Changing others’ minds is challenging, particularly if people feel pressured to do so. Encountering resistance to new ideas from individuals or in our own minds is best overcome by subtly working around conflict rather than trying to force issues. A calm voice and easygoing approach connects more effectively than heated conversations.

Daily Cosmic Calendar for Tuesday, May 8th

This is a good point in the calendar to remind you that solar and planetary alignments don’t just disappear off the astro-psychic radar screen a day after they occur. Therefore, last night’s Jupiter-Uranus and Mars-Uranus high jinx remain a threat to everyone’s decorum and well-being today. Their potentially mischievous vibrations are somewhat diminished, but still reverberating a little below the threshold of consciousness. Fortunately, we don’t have giant-sized replacements to take their place until tomorrow when four fairly major alignments reach exactitude. For the most part, you can indulge in favorite arts, crafts, hobbies and pastimes during much of today under fiery and enthusiastic Sagittarius Moon. Communication channels are reasonably clear in the hours building up to the Moon making a flowing trine of 120-degrees to Mercury (6:35PM PDT). Once this exactly occurs, the lunar orb is void, but only for 26 minutes until 7:01PM PDT when the Moon enters industrious, hardworking Capricorn. This is a signal to be more focused on fulfilling career ambitions and energizing professional plans during the next two days. Assisting your efforts in this regard is Mercury entering earthy, persistent Taurus (10:16PM PDT) until May 24. If you are feeling a strange sense of buoyancy and even euphoria overnight, chalk it up to the approach of the mind-expanding Sun parallel Jupiter (forming precisely at 5:39AM PDT tomorrow morning).