Yay! July 8th is my birthday and this year I turn 33 years old. Numerologically, this is year of The Hierophant for me. I think that a birthday is a wonderful time to do a tarot reading, so I developed a special spread to help process and guide the energies of the coming year. I did this spread last year, and am excited to share another birthday reading with you this year. I had a blast rereading last year’s birthday reading and working up this new one.
The birthday tarot spread I developed is a 6 question spread addressing: 1. how will your current tarot year card manifest itself in your life, 2. what lessons do you need to learn this year, 3. what particular area of your life do you need to focus on this year, 4. what obstacles stand in your way this year, 5. what can help you achieve your goals this coming year, and 6. what kind of year can you expect to experience? I used the Shadowscapes deck to do this reading.
My immediate thought upon seeing the cards was, “Whoa, this reading is HEAVY”. I had a professor in college who would fail any paper that contained the word heavy as an adjective that described anything besides a unit of measurement, but seriously guys, I can feel the weight of this reading on my shoulders. And it feels heavy. The Hierophant is bit of a difficult year to wrap my head around. I don’t always have the best associates with this archetype, since it represents conformity, dogma, discipline and a general “in the box” sort of thinking- no tarot reader’s favorite place to be. I want to be free and expansive, but there are still so many lessons I need to learn from those who are older and wiser, from society as a social structure that exists for a reason, from all of the cultivated wisdom that can help me on my journey.
Here’s what I drew:
How will The Hierophant manifest in my life this year: Justice reversed
Here is a card I hear cry out in my own voice: “But this isn’t FAIR!” I have a keenly developed sense of logic. I smile appreciatively when someone tells me I’m rational, level-headed, or that I make “so much sense”. The elevation of logic is a cultural norm in my Eurocentric worldview, so I always want to embody the rational approach. My Moon sign, the sign of emotions, is in the Air sign (read- mind-oriented, logical realm) of Aquarius (read- I want to be unique about my rational). So,I feel emotionally comfy and secure when I’m using my noggin and people think I’m so super smart and different for my perspective. The Hierophant energy of my year wants me to fall in line, though. This year is ruled by an energy of conformity and Justice reversed tells me that I’m not gonna like it. I’ve been living out of a van for the last year, ruling over my own life (read EMPIRE as it was an Emperor year). This year, though Kristen and I are getting an apartment again and it may be weird and difficult to sign a lease, fill out job applications, or do all those normal people things- like have a mailing address. Justice reversed tells me that there will probably be some kick back against the rigidity of The Hierophant. I’m going to want to keep doing things my own way, when the energy around me is all about saying that I need to live inside the box for a while.
What lesson can I learn this year: The World rxed
The journey that I’m on is not over yet. Kristen and I will still be touring around the U.S. for the rest of the summer and then we are going to South America for three months. Still, this year will see us settle down to a greater degree than we have in the past. The World reversed shows me that travel will not be as constant as last year. This is also a card about closure, and I feel an end to a cycle coming on strongly. I’ve learned SO MUCH recently about myself, my outlook on reality, my spirituality, my place in the world, etc. There is a heavy sense of ending around me. This last transit of Saturn through Scorpio is digging up so many of the lessons of the past 3 years that I’m impatient to expound upon. I’m ready, I’m ready, I’m ready, but the process of ending is frustratingly slow. Sure, I feel ready in my heart, but I don’t feel ready in my physicality, in my timing, in my mind. Something is still off, so hopefully the presence of The World reversed in this position means that this year I will find that culmination and closure that seems so imminent but is sneakily not here just yet.
What to focus on this year: VI of Cups
Here is a clue to how I can bring about the closure that The World hints at, but doesn’t deliver. The VI of Cups is a card of the past. It represents nostalgia, but also lingering in moments that have already gone by, instead of staying in the present and working toward the future. I need to examine my past and figure out what is holding me back. I could be idealizing a golden age. On the other hand, I could be failing to deal with matters of the heart that still weigh me down or oppress me in some manner. Making peace with the past is difficult for us all. There is always the little voice in the head that wanders if things would be different now if we had acted some other way, if we had chosen some other direction, if we hadn’t done what we had done. I believe we have to leave the past behind us, so my focus this year is to figure out what I’m holding onto from my past that no longer serves me, how to release and let go of that past, and bringing that closure that I’m looking for into the now.
What will hinder me: IV of Cups
Ironically, what will hinder my process of self assessment and healing the past, is too much introspection. The IV of Cups shows a going within, a time of self examination when the outside world is not as important as the inner world. The warning here is that I must not forget about all the things I need to do with my life to move forward, while I’m examining all the things in my life that I want to leave behind. Here is a reminder to find balance. Yes, examine the past and your past lessons, but do it activitely. My intuition says this means that I can’t do it alone. I need to find outside help. This would tie in perfectly with the energy of The Hierophant, who is often an older and wiser counselor who can help you learn and grow. A personal dream or goal of mine is to find a spiritual advisor who can help me grow as a tarot reader, but also help me process my feelings about my developing spirituality. The IV of Cups is a card of isolation and contemplation, two things I love to do, but will hinder my progress. Here is an opportunity for me to do something outside the norm for myself, even while conforming to a Hierophant year energy.
What energy will help me: The Emperor reversed
I looove this. Last year was a IV year for me, which is the year of The Emperor. Now I have moved on to a V year, which is the year of The Hierophant. Basically, letting go of what came before will help me move on this coming year. The idea of energy cycles is difficult, especially when I was having such a powerful Emperor year when I felt like I was building up this personal empire. I found so many amazing clients for my tarot business to grow. I also worked hard to build relationships with tons of bookers and clubs in my tour manager career. I feel like Kristen and I could keep this up and conquer the USA as vandwelling musician and tarot readers. But that energy is receding now, and the dream of constant traveling is fading into a desire to get an apartment and a dog and have a home base that doesn’t involve wheels. That is Hierophant energy and I need to accept it and flow with it. It is time to let The Emperor energy go and embrace the new year of my life with The Hierophant.
What type of year can I expect with The Hierophant: Judgement
Here’s why I feel like this is a heavy year of energy. Justice and Judgement are both very serious cards in my opinion, as is The Emperor and The Hierophant. That’s a lot of Major Arcana energy that deals with serious matters. Judgement, card XX also nicely complements The World reversed, card XXI. Before I can find the ending (XXI The World is the last Major), I need to go through the lessons of Judgement. I just did a meditation on Judgement today and things feel very clear to me. I need to heed my inner calling. Honestly, I feel like I have heard that inner calling and being a tarot reader and a traveler and marrying the woman of my dreams. I’m just not sure I’ve told everyone, or lived that inner calling, which I feel is the next step. Being an introvert isn’t going to work, says the IV of Cups. I need to shine my light outward and people are not going to understand or even like it, which goes against my sense of logical with Justice reversed. I need to put the past behind me, I don’t have to be that girl I was, I can be this woman I am to myself in front of the whole world. Until I do that, this cycle doesn’t end. The fact that all these cards showed up in this reading, gives me strength that I’m on the right path. This reading makes me feel like I know what to do and that I CAN do it.
This year I will work to fulfill my inner calling. I have heard it, now I must act and be living in accordance with that calling. I will do this by bringing about a positive and happy transition from my childhood atheism to my present spirituality. I should look for others who have lived a similar path and I will learn from them. I will branch out to include others in my inner world, letting my heart shine it’s light onto all those who need it. I will let go of some of my vandwelling independence and join the ranks of rent paying, addressed homebodies. I will celebrate and acknowledge what I have done before and be open to take that next Fool’s leap into a new way of living. This reading is huge for me! Thank you so much for being a part of the journey thus far and consider this your cordial invitation to continue onward with me on this willow path.
How are you learning and growing this year as we slowly revolve around the sun on this great planet of ours? Do you know what your goals and dreams are? Are you working toward them? Do you know what is holding you back and what can support you in moving forward? Are you acting in alignment with who you are? Do you know how to listen to your calm inner center of being? I feel motivated and encouraged by this reading. I know I have a lot of work to do, both in the physical world and in my internal spiritual development. It’s a wonderful thing to have the tarot for these exercises in self reflection and empowerment. Please get in touch if you would like a reading of your own!