Hermetic Tarot - Celtic Cross

My final squandering of monetary funds was on the Hermetic Tarot deck that I'd been eyeing for a while now. I find that being confronted by these cards is quite similar to being confronted by a complex essay, much as the saying goes that "a picture says a thousand words" this tarot deck is the epitome of that driving thought. Interpreting these cards is like delving into a novel, it's something to do whilst relaxing with a fresh pot of herbal tea at your leisure, not perhaps for a quick and easy "to go" answer as the Rider-Waite.

Using the Celtic Cross Layout for my first reading with this deck I drew the following cards. As the booklet suggests, if more than half the cards are inverted, a more consistent reading is obtained by returning the reversed cards to their upright position. For this reason I shall read the inverted cards as they are and also in their upright meaning.

1. Present Position - Five of Pentacles (inverted): "Lord of Material Trouble"

This card is pretty straight forward in what it represents, upright, there's a clear issue around cultivation of material goods and/or position. Inverted there's a strong indication that money will be regained after severe toil and labour. So ultimately this represents my struggle with college work and my fear of graduating, I am climbing up the mountain of knowledge to get a position, but it's a steep, long climb to the top. It's also worth mentioning that this card is representative of the Taurus zodiac sign.

2. Immediate Influence - Two of Swords (crossed): "Lord of Peace Restored"

Two Swords, in this situation that cross the card above are indicative of holding one's own in a battle or indeed a struggle. There is sacrifice and trouble but also because of it peace is restored. There's a truce in being established which also is represented by the zodiac sign Libra associated with this card.

3. Goal or Destiny - Two of Wands (inverted): "Lord of Dominion"

Here's a card that indicated rule, strength, dominion, boldness and courage, signs that indicate a future as a leader in life. Aries and Mars, two very masculine signs appear on this card and by nature I do have traits that could be seen as very masculine. I tend to associate my personality with that of a Valkyrie or a Viking shield maiden, so from a modern point of view I have a very strong feminist outlook, quite simply a woman can be a courageous warrior and a loving mother.

4. Distant Past Foundation - Knight of Cups: "Lord of Waves and Waters"

Being a Pisces, cards that indicate association with water are of particular significance to me. In the meaning of this card, water is graceful, poetic, it winds and twists, it erodes away at even the hardest and highest of cliffs. It's sensual and seductive and it manipulates itself to fit any container it finds itself in with ease and grace.

5. Recent Past Events - King of Pentacles (inverted): "Prince of the Chariot of Earth"

Past events are indicated to have steadily moving towards the goal, at some points the chariot of growth slows but it never rolls backwards even though at times it might have been heading in the wrong direction, or if you like, taking the long route round. The crest of the King on this card represents the bull, who also tugs the chariot forward with a certain stubbornness.

6. Future Influence - The Last Judgement (inverted) : "The Spirit of the Primal Fire"

Judgement is synonymous with choice and especially, whether you are making the right one. The Last Judgement is clear indication of considering retrospectively whether the right decisions were made. It can mean having to par for one's sins or in fact being rewarded for one's sacrifices in the bounty of the afterlife, so looking from a positive perspective, this means acknowledgement for the work and sacrifices that preceded this point in time.

7. The Questioner - The Emperor (inverted): "Son of the Morning"

The Emperor can mean power, or when inverted, lack of it. Rams make an appearance on this card, another indicator of Aries that appeared in the Goal or Destiny card, for this reason it seems like possessing power and strength rather than lacking it is the more logical association with this card. It would seem that governmental rule has been established, this is a successful finishing point.

8. Environmental Factors - The Lovers (inverted): "Children of the Voice Divine"

In this card, Andromeda is chained to a rock and threatened by a rising dragon from the waters of stagnation, the positive aspect is that Perseus is quick to defend her. Stated in the booklet, it is important to study this card in conjunction with Temperance that also appeared int his reading. The Lovers both pertain to Gemini, a sign that I generally have bad run ins with, and Sagittarius that has been quite ambivalent. Generally speaking The Lovers mean inspiration, motivation, love beauty and harmony but inverted can also indicate problems with separation, frustration in love and failure to meet a test. Considering the previous cards I believe this indicates a drive to finding a sort of clique in which one can function to their best, sort of like establishing a cabinet of ministers.

9. Inner Emotions - Temperance: "Daughter of the Reconcilers"

This card indicates fulfilment of the The Lovers, and the sign of Sagittarius features prominently on this card alongside Capricorn (ruled by Saturn) and Scorpio (ruled by Mars, yet another appearance!). A volcano is erupting in the background and a rainbow leaps forth from it indicating that chaotic events can bring forth inspiration and beauty. Fire and Water mix harmoniously, much like Yin and Yang. This tends indicate towards finding the other missing half that is one's opposite and being in complete harmony with it. It's also worth mentioning that looking closely at the card you could mistake the fire for thunder which mixes with water and brews into a Tempest.

10. Final Result - Princess of Swords: "Princess of the Rushing Winds"

An Amazon figure with serpentine hair and loosely-fitting attire is features on this card, which makes me smile as I would like to be represented by such a form. She has both characteristics of Minerva and Artemis, yet she also has the crest of Medusa above her head. Standing in front of a barren alter to avenge its profanation, she stabs downward with her sword and the heavens and clouds are not happy about that! She's a strong figure full of wisdom, strength and grace that does not fear upsetting the established order. This card actually makes me giggle because she has the fearless aspects I associate with Valkyrie whilst being just.

All in all, it would seem the future is tumultuous and bright!