Category Archives: Court Cards

Mystic Monkey – CORNISH EDITION: The Page of Swords

In honor of my recent trip to Cornwall (which contributed to my blog hiatus), I managed to stage one tarot photo there for this post. As we were staying in the renovated engine house of an old tin mine, it felt right to bring my Steampunk Tarot deck into our vintage industrial surroundings. But since I was sans sock monkey, posing with the tarot card is the next best thing: a hand-knit Cornish pasty, because AS IF I DIDN’T NEED THAT IN MY LIFE THE SECOND I SAW IT IN THE SHOP.

Anyway, getting on with it, I present to you the Page of Swords

Is she hawt or what?! The hot-air balloon and billowing cape so perfectly capture the air element, and her no-nonsense stance conveys the smart and logical essence of the Swords suit. She’s a page, so still a rookie, but raring for adventure with a head full of ideas and strategy that she’ll hone with more experience. Being that she is new to the game, she might get in over her head, but she’s got the intellect and will to try, fueled by a very inquisitive nature. A straight-shooter with a sharp mind, she’s ready for take-off at the first opportunity.

As we can see in the original Rider-Waite-Smith counterpart, there’s also an airy if not blustery quality showing much eagerness to cut through the crap and venture forth in pursuit of high ideals. There’s a risk of overconfidence with these Pages sometimes, though, if they get bullheaded with their ideas or cloud their focus with a lot of thought but little implementation.

*

Crystal pairing: blue apatite to clear confusion and stimulate intellect for personal growth.


Mystic Monkey – HALLOWEEN EDITION: The Queen of Cups

Today, I am deliberately drawing my signifier card, mainly because she’s so gosh darn cute in the Trick or Tarot deck.

Why is the Queen of Cups my signifier card, and what in hell is a signifier in the first place? Well, the signifier (or significator) is a card meant to represent the querent (or seeker–i.e., the person receiving the tarot reading). There are different ways to select a signifier for someone, but I personally follow Benebell Wen‘s approach, which uses court cards to reflect the querent’s age and gender and then selects the tarot suit (Wands, Cups, Pentacles, or Swords) based on the querent’s sun sign and its corresponding element. So, since my sign is Cancer, a water sign, I’m represented by Cups. And since I’m an adult female, I’m a Queen. 👑

I didn’t always use a signifier, but lately I’ve found that I really like anchoring a reading with one. It just sets the stage with the querent’s energy (which is why you could choose any card, really, that embodies a person in that moment, changing it from reading to reading as you see fit).

Anywho, I’m satisfied with the Queen of Cups, as I always have considered myself an emotional person. Not just in terms of my own feelings and moods, but also the compassion and empathy I try to offer others. I’m a pragmatist, too, but ultimately ruled by the touchy-feely. Relationships, creativity, and spirituality are what I live and breathe.

The Queen of Cups isn’t a flaky pushover, though. She can keep a lid on her emotions when necessary, maturely managing them like the King of Cups. Nonetheless, she also has the romanticism and imagination of the Knight of Cups and Page of Cups. She’s a compassionate, nurturing soul like the Empress, and she’s highly intuitive like the High Priestess. A comforter and counselor, this Queen is more sensitive than the Queen of Wands or Swords. As you can see from the flowing water and pale draping clothing in the traditional Rider-Waite-Smith depiction, she has an expressive nature and soft countenance, her love and gentleness echoed by the cherubs surrounding her.

Well, I’m sure not gonna pretend I’m sweetness and light all the time, nor that my river doesn’t rage more often than I’d like. That cup that she holds is quite elaborate like my complicated (and complicating) emotions, and those angels’ wings curve up like the horns I sometimes wear on my head. 😈 Yet I still humbly hail to this Queen as my tarot counterpart when seeking guidance for moody me. 😊

*

Crystal pairing: mangano calcite for comfort and compassion.

 


Mystic Monkey – HALLOWEEN EDITION: The King of Swords

Hear ye, hear ye! His Majesty demandeth your attention!

Mummy Monkey is really using his head for this one…a.k.a., my little fluorite skull, Lula. Sorry the card itself appears so faded in the image, but what we see here is an owl-masked King of Swords smoking his pipe as a mist of swirling smoke envelopes his head. The Swords suit in tarot represents the air element and is all to do with our noggins–that is, our thoughts and intellect. In contrast to the touchy-feelier King of Cups, this monarch rules with reason more than emotion.

The King of Swords from the Rider-Waite-Smith tarot deck.

This can make him seem a bit more detached, aloof, as he approaches life rationally and objectively. He can cut through the crap to see a situation with clarity and troubleshoot it without personal baggage or compassion influencing his decisions. Not that he’s completely cold-hearted; he’s just able to distance himself with a mental acuity that enables him to make the tough choices, the ones that are probably in everyone’s best interest in the long run even if might hurt feelings or seem callous in the short run. I can’t help but think of a sociopath as an extreme example–not the serial-murdery kind, but the sort who remains utterly cool under pressure. The kind we actually need in society because someone’s gotta diffuse that bomb without freaking out! So, this card tends to pop up when you need to check your emotions at the door and think things through more intelligently and less impetuously. It could also mean seeking out an advisor who can offer sound logic and advice.

To supplement this card, I also drew one from The Halloween Oracle. I swear I do not make this stuff up…

I mean, seriously, the owl?! The owl! After I just said the King of Swords from the Trick or Tarot deck is wearing an owl mask and represents intellect and reason–or one could say, “Wise seeing, wise action,” as this oracle card indeed does. The accompanying guidebook goes on to say:

Should the hooting owl come looking for you this Halloween, it indicates the need for wise council or further information before you make a decision. Considered action is warranted. Think before you act emotionally and ensure you think strategically, not impulsively.

Well, gol’ darn. If that’s not a perfect counterpart to today’s tarot card, I don’t know what is.

*

Crystal pairing: clear quartz + purple fluorite for clear thinking and discernment.


Mystic Monkey: The Page of Cups

Eek, I’m getting this one in just under the wire in UK time. But today’s tarot card at least puts the “sweet” in short-n-sweet…

(In lieu of having a fish handy around the flat, I at least somehow managed a turtle for the photo.)

So here we are, with the Page of Cups! I have a tendency to see this guy and automatically think, aw crap, I’m being too fanciful and immature again…which is of course what this card can mean, but it doesn’t always have to be that negative. It can also give props to our imaginative selves full of whimsy and creativity. Our child at heart who would not only delight in finding a fish in her cup but also carry on a conversation with it as well–y’know, in a cute and clever and not alarmingly crazy way. Within the tarot court cards, Pages can represent a young person in our life or our own youthful aspect (or early stage in a new endeavor). And when it comes to the tarot suit of Cups, we’re working within the realm of emotions, intuition, creativity, and spirituality. The soft, soothing blues of this card and the gently undulating waves in its background give an easy-breezy impression of just going with the flow, wherever your whims may take you. A blessing for new beginnings.

There’s of course still that caution that I opened with, though, as Pages in their innocence can also be naive and in need of more experience and doses of reality. As with all tarot cards, however you take this one can depend on its context and perhaps if it’s reversed or not (if reading reversed cards is your thang–it’s mine but not everyone’s). But overall, it can’t help but be a delightful little messenger, with a freedom and lightness that gets a bit lost by the time this Page ages into the King of Cups.

*

Crystal pairing: yellow fluorite + larimar for creativity, flow, and connecting with your inner child


Mystic Monkey: The King of Cups

Well, howdy-do?! I ditched my tarot card of the day yesterday for a cemetery tour in the rain (as one does), but today I’m back to rock ’em sock(monkey) ’em.

So, kings… I generally don’t love when they appear. They automatically make me dread an authoritarian a-hole in my life or that that’s the stern attitude I must possess.

But kings aren’t necessarily dicks, and embodying their masculine energy can be quite a good thing. Tarot kings are masters of their suits, after all, and the King of Cups in particular is a nice, loving king. More in tune with his emotions than the rest. But, again, a master of them, meaning he can keep them in check. Keep his head above water and ride the waves with ease. Which is, again, a good thing–I really need it!–but this lends an aloofness as well. I feel like this king is more intuitive and fanciful than he lets himself show. Like he’s lived his Page and Knight days of daydreaming and romance and has by now stuffed a cork in it. The crazy fish he once held in his cup is now dumped back into the water. Yet it stays with him, swimming alongside.

So, I do give this king credit for possessing creativity and compassion, simply filtering it through his emotional maturity. He can remain calm under pressure and apply his strong instincts and interpersonal skills to his work and relationships. He’s deep, not shallow. Steady but not stodgy. A confident yet caring person who does ultimately give a crap. He’s just not going to spaz out over it. He’ll mediate and productively work toward solutions instead.

As for how this might apply to me? I’ve been a little self-pitying the last couple of days, which is decidedly not a color I love on me, so today I feel ready to rein it in.

*

My chosen crystal pairing: serpentine + mahogany obsidian for emotional balance and strength.


Mystic Monkey: The Page of Wands

Greetings, and welcome back to my shenanigans! My tree is sadly absent one sister now, with whom I had zee best week venturing around my zoo and beyond. *sigh*

As I return to regular routine with great melancholy, today’s tarot card is the Page of Wands.

This dude is rocking the sacral chakra colors like his mother, and you know what? Who says he’s a dude? Court cards like this are traditionally associated with certain genders and even skin tones and hair color, but I prefer to interpret their particular energies, applicable to anyone who embodies the same.

In this Page’s case, tones are earthy yet vibrant, a salamander-spotted tunic in vivid yellow depicting the fire within, as she’s ready to embark across a vast orange landscape of creativity and passion. She’s cloaked in courage and ambition and looks fondly at her wooden staff, seeing the fertile green potential sprouting from it, a wand for her to wield and create with as she forges ahead with naivety yet determination and drive. She’s only scratched the surface of what she can achieve, or is about to, and while she might stumble here and there on the peaks and valleys of her journey as she learns and grows, she learns and grows all the same, the wand steadying her steps ever more. She’s focused and free, her lust for life and to reach her goals already a feather in her cap.

Interestingly, today I also drew a card from my brand-new Halloween Oracle (’tis approaching the season, y’know?)–or, rather, the card flew out of the deck of its own volition during shuffling. I got the Witch, “The earthly weaver of the worlds.”

As I’m renewing my daily tarot practice and looking to work with other new decks today, I like to think both of these cards are signaling this rekindled creative and metaphysical focus. The Witch manifests fire with her own two hands, just as the Page seeks to apply the fire of her mind and spirit to bringing something into being. Working with tarot and oracle cards does give me a sense of uniting the unseen with the seen, the physical cards feeling so amazing in my hands as my mind and soul energy melds with them to create visual messages of what lies within. These messages are a call to action as well, which embraces the energy of both Wand and Witch: intentions made manifest.

Okay, so now I’m babbling but all in all feeling very cool and pleased with today’s reading and my efforts going forward. 😊

*

My chosen crystal pairing: vanadinite, for focus and fire.


Mystic Monkey: The Queen of Wands

Hiya! Onward to Day 4 of my tarot card-a-day reflections. Only 74 more to go! 😃…😬…😦

Anyway, several cards tumbled into my lap today (whoa, hey there), but this little lady was the only one to present herself face-up.

I love her.

She’s just got it so together. She’s creative, she’s passionate, she’s fun, and she’s fiercely loving. She even has a kitty! She strikes me as a bit witchy for that reason, as if the black cat is her familiar and she can wield her wand for magic. Fiery solar plexus and sacral chakra colors here (yellow and orange), so I’m fully feeling the vibe of creative and sexual passion, confidence, joy, optimism, and drive. I have fond respect for all the queens, but the Queen of Wands is one I’d actually want to hang with. She seems full of whim yet no-nonsense at the same time, like she’d join in the laughs and be game for something totally spontaneous, but she isn’t going to take anyone’s crap and is only in it for a truly authentic experience. The sunflowers add to her charm, warm and happy as they turn to face the light, yet they’re also strong and hardy. Not delicate like other flowers. The lions add to the vim and vigor (the ones above her head look ready to party), but they can also be fierce and protective when need be–even kitten has claws and stares us down intimidatingly, still primal and superior in its evolved domesticity. The clasp on Queenie’s cloak shows her to be lionhearted as well. You want to stay on her good side. But she’s great. Loyal and lovely. Maybe a little eccentric. Very determined. I can only hope to embrace her energy today!! 🌻🌻🌻

*

My chosen crystal pairing: orange calcite + carnelian for creativity and drive.


Mystic Monkey: The Knight of Cups

Well, look at this charmer.

He actually flew into my lap (well, hellooo 😘) upside down during shuffling, and I do take reversals into account in my readings. But for the purposes of this card-a-day exercise, I am only interpreting upright meanings.

So. Back to this dreamboat. The tarot suit of cups is associated with the element of water, and indeed I literally see water running through this image as a river or stream. The cup itself may be filled with water for this knight’s long journey. Water also flows through this guy’s get-up in a pattern that includes fish, so…he’s not winning any fashion awards with me, but I do give points for flamboyance. He’s owning it. And he’s perhaps the most gallant of the knights–literally the knight in shining armor on a white horse that we romanticize. And being the Knight of Cups means he’s in tune with his feelings and probably a great communicator. He’s a guy who could sweep you off your feet. Maybe also break your heart. The wings on his helmet and ankles show him to be fleet of foot, bringing in an air element to me that reinforces the idea of communication; he knows how to express himself. Lord knows he does it through his snazzy clothing, but he probably articulates himself well, too, through writing, speaking, and/or art. He sits tall and confidently, and even his pretty horsie is posing for the camera, though maybe this knight is a little vain, a little showy. A man of grand gestures, but how well does he follow through when it really matters? Does he go with the flow of the waters and just move on when he’s made a conquest? However he might regard others’ feelings, he does seem in command of his own and willing to share but is probably a bit sensitive, in both good and potentially bad ways. He feels all of the feels and doesn’t hide it. He has an artistic temperament, perhaps. But he-n-horsie are just stopped at the water for this little photo op; he doesn’t seem particularly ambitious about crossing it or getting around it some way. Nonetheless, as a knight of his strong posture, he has a degree of accomplishment, motivation, and responsibility and looks forward to his ultimate goal. He’s heading in the right direction and will get there, eventually, led by his heart. 💖

So, that’s my particular take on this particular card on this particular day. It always varies, and I’m not trying to lock in any meaning, only spending more time with each card and letting the thoughts flow to see what fresh perspective they might bring. In a nutshell, I’m just babbling. 🙊

*

My chosen crystal pairing: blue lace agate + honey calcite to calm and smooth over communication (in case of cranky knights!)


%d bloggers like this: