Ash and Stardust, a monthly column by energy worker and artist/writer DHIYANAH HASSAN explores the intersections of tarot with healing and creativity. You can read the rest of the series here.
We are now at the dusk of eclipse season and scrambling for stillness. Restless, we tend to be unsure how to be when all that’s being asked of us is, “Rest, now.” We’ve been going at it for so long, haven’t we? Each year a solar return, each decade a collection of milestones, each century a tome, and each millennium a prophecy for the apocalypse. Sometimes we tell each other stories in fragments because that is the only way we remember them as timeless.
Picture each card in a spread as one fragment of a story so expansive, no linear sequence could contain it. Each symbol and suggestion a check-in with the intuitive self, each placement a closer look into the familiar or the unknown. A spread laid out in front of you like an offering of what the bigger picture could look like if it was something you can touch. And why not – why not believe that you can demand the bigger picture reveal itself to you, to shuffle and cut and pull stories out of thin air so that you can set what’s necessary into motion.
There’s power in reclaiming agency with the smallest of gestures. A little goes a long, long way.
Each cosmic and internal shift excavate something vital inside us that we’ve been neglecting. A planet retrograding could catalyze difficult situations that serve to suck the poisons out of our days. Stationing direct, we may suddenly be struck by inspiration that seemed to materialize out of nowhere. A new moon drives us deeper into shadow work and a full moon charges us up with an overflow so intense it might just manifest into something wonderful.
Every insight into the movements of galactic bodies is testament to how much the Universe pulsates within each of us. Everything is connected. But it can take time for our language to catch up with that.
I designed this spread in between the last two eclipses of this year as a check-in tool. A way to place a magnifying glass on how the bigger picture is affecting me in my current trajectory. A personal barometer to gauge how one might approach the lessons one is being challenged to integrate.
It’s hopefully just enough to provide clarity and grounding as we navigate our ever-evolving sense of being on this planet. Use it when needed, when a favorite astrologer’s tweet about planetary movements ring a bell in your heart that you’re not too sure how to answer, when you notice a sudden surge of energy push-pulling in your body, when you feel like the words aren’t enough to articulate the changes happening inside you.
1. What’s being revealed. This card represents how a current cosmic or energetic shift is affecting you by asking the question, what are these changes bringing to light. What requires your attention at this moment?
2 & 3. Challenges to integrate. Flanked on either side of the first card are the challenges you’re being asked to integrate. Sometimes we view challenges as something we need to defeat and by doing so, we end up focusing too hard on eliminating problems that we might cause collateral damages and block off whatever that’s new and nourishing from growing in our vicinity. Integrate rather than eliminate – face your challenges with the intention to get the most out of them.
4. Support. Situated at the base of this spread, this card suggests what to focus on when you are in need of support or supportive energies. This is what will hold you up when those challenges feel like weights you’re not built to carry. Observe – is this spread suggesting that help could come from outside of you? Are you being challenged to ask for help, or maybe the care you require must come from within – if so, what needs to be released or embraced for that to happen with ease?
If you include reversals in your reading, notice them and work with them. Acknowledge what elements are most present (air/Swords, water/Cups, earth/Pentacles, fire/Wands), any court cards popping up, if there are significant numbers recurring or a major arcana card that stands out – take them as clues or messages to use as supplements for your self-care practice.
And as always, take care.