2016 Lunar Eclipse Harvest Moon

September 14, 2016 § Leave a comment

FULL MOON ECLIPSE in PISCES

pisces-pufferfish-makes-sand-earthworksSeptember 16 2016 is a full Moon eclipse in Water sign Pisces. Pisces are intuitive, artistic, and feel deeply. They understand animals, and empathize with those less fortunate. During the time of a Pisces full Moon, people can be more sensitive and emotional.

So now is time for gentleness, not arguing or fighting to speak your truth. The full Moon is opposite the Sun and Mercury in Virgo. Plus Mercury is still retrograde until September 21. Strive to be clear and thoughtful in both verbal and written communication.

Fortunately, the Sun conjuncts Jupiter until October 10. You can stay strong, see the big picture, and take advantage of opportunities as they arise. Venus sextiles Mars that strengthens love relationships and friendships. Creativity is enhanced, involvement with others brings reward, and there is balance of give and take.

But Mars squares the full Moon and Sun. Be aware of your motivations, not just operating on unconscious response. Be assertive only when necessary, and not let tensions get out of hand. Instead of making fast decisions, use the final weeks of this eclipse lunar cycle to observe behavior, yours and others. Answers can arrive in dreams or through symbols. Under the influence of Pisces, now is a superb time to consult oracles!

HARVEST MOON

This full Moon eclipse is the annual Harvest Moon, the full Moon closest to Autumn Equinox on September 22. Equinox is the time of equal day and equal night on planet Earth, and occurs twice a year at autumn and spring.

This lunar eclipse energy can reveal what needs to be brought to light, and is most influential for Water signs Pisces, Cancer, and Scorpio and those born in Rabbit, Sheep, Dog, and Pig years. Contact me at 415.642.8019 or susan@susanlevitt.com to schedule your tarot, astrology, or feng shui consultation.

Happy full Moon,

Susan

The Structure of Tarot: Major, Minor, or Court

September 11, 2016 § Leave a comment

Do you sometimes get lost when reading the 78 tarot cards?  When I teach tarot and a student can’t interpret a card, I ask if the card is major, minor, or court. If you can place the card in one of those three categories, then you can determine meaning by following the structure of tarot.

There are 22 major arcana cards, 40 minor arcana cards, and 16 court cards. (Arcana means secret, or arcane.) Each tarot card is either major, minor, or court.

0foolThe 22 cards of the major arcana tell the story of The Fool’s journey. They are a richly symbolic pattern of a very old mystery. They are The Fool, The Magician, The High Priestess, The Empress, The Emperor, The Hierophant, The Lovers, The Chariot, Strength, The Hermit, The Wheel of Fortune, Justice, The Hanged Man, Death, Temperance, The Devil, The Tower, The Star, The Moon, The Sun, Judgement, and The World.

The 40 cards of the minor arcana are numbered ace through 10. They represent the four elements of Fire, Water, Air, and Earth. The structure is similar to playing cards, also four suits numbered ace through 10.

cupsking16 cards are court cards, or royal figures, which are divided into 4 court cards for each of the 4 elements Fire, Water, Air, and Earth. Court cards are depicted as a King, Queen, Knight, and Page in most tarot decks. The King and Queen represent mastery, power, and strength. A Knight denotes action, quest, and movement. The Page represents exploration, learning, and being of service.

Karmic cards of destiny are the 22 major arcana, the 4 aces, and the 16 court cards. Cards of choice are 2 through 10 of the minor arcana.

When you are doing a tarot reading, observe if a card is major, minor, or court. The major arcana cards are somewhere on The Fool’s journey. The court cards show mastery of the King and Queen, or development of the Knight and Page. The minor arcana cards are 1 through 10 and represent the suits Fire, Water, Air, or Earth.

The Four Elements

In tarot, the four elements of Fire, Water, Air, and Earth are symbolized by a wand, cup, sword, and pentacle. The four elements also correspond to four directions and colors: south red, west black, east yellow, and north white. The four colors also represent the races of humanity.

The four elements of Fire, Water, Air, and Earth are found in many magical and spiritual systems such as the Native American medicine wheel, the four corners of European pre-Christian ritual, the four elements of alchemical schools of medieval Europe, and the four elements of astrology. Alchemy is to change our bases selves into gold — radiant and rare. By combining the elements we can transform reality.

tarot-fireThe exciting, masculine element Fire represents will, drive, destiny, creativity, and spirit in action. In tarot, the symbol for Fire is a wand, a blazing wand of power. The suit of clubs in a regular playing deck represents Fire. Fire is the phallus ejaculating the seeds of creativity. In Chinese medicine the element Fire is associated with the heart. Fire myths are Prometheus bound, Satan and his flames, and the Phoenix that rises from its own ashes. The Fire signs of astrology are Sagittarius, Aries, and Leo.

water-tarotThe element Water is the nurturing, feminine element that represents emotions, intuition, spiritual belief, faith, and love. In tarot, the symbol for Water is a cup, a round cup that holds water. The suit of hearts in a regular playing deck represents Water. Water is the essence of life, the sea of fertility, the amniotic fluid of the womb, and the womb of the Ocean Mother from whom all life emerged. According to the ancient Chinese, Water is the most powerful element for it can flow around any obstacle in its path without changing essence. Water myths in the Western  tradition are the quest for the fountain of youth, Jonah in the belly of the whale, Noah and the ark, the waters of St. John the Baptist, and the waters of the holy grail. The Water signs of astrology are Pisces, Cancer, and Scorpio.

tarot-air

The masculine element Air represents the mind, mental activity, communication, intellect, thoughts, and ideas. In tarot, the symbol for Air is a sword that can cut through matter with clarity and swiftness. The suit of spades in a regular playing deck represents Air. The Tower of Babel, the wing-footed messenger god Mercury, the Excalibur sword, and the smoke of the peace pipe are air myths and symbols. The Air signs of astrology are Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius.

earth-tarot

The stable, feminine element Earth represents the material world, health, wealth, tangible goods, and the concrete reality of Mother Earth upon whom we walk. In tarot, the symbol for Earth is a pentacle, disk, or coin. The suit of diamonds in a regular playing deck represents Earth. Earth myths and stories are the minotaur of ancient Crete, the golden calf, Atlas carrying the world on his shoulders, Persephone in the Underworld, and the goose that laid golden eggs. The Earth signs of astrology are Virgo, Capricorn, and Taurus.

Reading Tarot Cards

Many tarot cards you know at first glance, but others are not as easy to understand. If you feel like you’re getting lost, ask yourself major, minor, or court to figure out where the card fits into the larger structure of tarot.

If a card is one of the 22 major arcana, find out where it is on The Fool’s journey. Court cards rule their element so be aware that wands royals are active and exciting, cups royals are sensitive and intuitive, air royals are thinking and love learning, and earth royals are practical yet sensual.

swords6People tend to get lost in the minor arcana. So figure out the suit! Sometimes people confuse wands with swords so look closely. And 6 swords is often confused with a cup card because water is depicted on the card.

cups3Do not get discouraged! Keep reading your cards! When in doubt, discern major, minor, or court to have clarity. And the best part of tarot is that each card tells a story. For example, if you had no idea that 3 cups was a minor card of the element Water, just by looking at the picture you have an idea of the meaning. So blend the information from the picture with your knowledge of major, minor, or court. Good luck!

2016 Solar Eclipse starts Phoenix Month

August 31, 2016 § Leave a comment

SOLAR ECLIPSE IN VIRGO

Moon GoddessSeptember 1 2016 at 2:08 am PT is a new Moon eclipse in Virgo. The new Moon, Sun, Mercury, and Jupiter are all in Earth sign Virgo. Virgos are smart, sharp, and articulate because Virgo is ruled by Mercury. Many planets in Virgo create a superb time to organize, think logically, and tidy up.

Mercury is retrograde from August 30 until September 21. Traditionally in astrology, Mercury retrograde is a time of miscommunication, technology problems, and items lost or misplaced. Mercury retrograde in Virgo is good to take care of your health, focus on diet, and rethink your plans.

This new Moon and Sun in Virgo square Mars and Saturn in Sagittarius. People can be irritable about delays, or if events don’t go exactly as planned. Fortunately, the new Moon and Sun trine Pluto to investigate and discover how to make improvements that can benefit everyone.

September might not be the best time to launch new plans because Neptune in Pisces is opposite the new Moon and Sun, and squares Mars and Saturn. Therefore, this lunar cycle is an opportunity for reflection and revision.

 

FIRE PHOENIX MONTH

This new Moon starts the month of the Fire Phoenix. Many translations refer to this lunar month as Rooster, Chicken, Cock, or Hen. I prefer Phoenix, offering opportunities for rebirth and transformation. Yet those born in Phoenix year are hard working and no nonsense. They take pride in a job well done. But the Fire Phoenix influence can bring rash decisions or blunt communication that could be misconstrued during Mercury retrograde.

Call me at 415.642.8019 in San Francisco or email susan@susanlevitt.com to schedule your tarot, astrology, or feng shui consultation. The new Moon eclipse energy is strongest for Earth signs Virgo, Capricorn, and Taurus and those born in Phoenix, Ox, Dragon, and Snake years.

Happy new Moon,

Susan

Mercury Retrograde

August 23, 2016 § Leave a comment

Grand Central MERCURY

As Fire Monkey month wanes, now is a good week to finish projects, tie up loose ends, and get organized because Mercury goes retrograde next Tuesday on August 30 2016.

Mercury will be retrograde for 3 weeks until Wednesday September 21. Autumn Equinox is the next day on September 22, the time of equal day and equal night on planet Earth. The Sun enters Libra as autumn begins.

Mercury is retrograde in Earth sign Virgo, a natural fit for Mercury because Mercury rules Virgo (and Gemini). The detailed and analytical side of Virgo can be very helpful for problem solving.

Traditionally in astrology, Mercury retrograde is a time of miscommunication, technology problems, and items lost or misplaced. But Mercury retrograde during this Fire Monkey year is an opportunity to stop for a moment to review, rethink, and redo.

Note that in September, the new Moon on September 1 will be a Solar Eclipse and the full Moon on September 16 will be a lunar eclipse. Make time for reflection.

Good luck,

Susan

2016 Triple Monkey Full Moon

August 17, 2016 § Leave a comment

sf full moonAugust 18 2016 at 2:26 am is a full Moon in Aquarius. Air sign Aquarius is ruled by Uranus, the planet of change and revolution. There’s a desire for freedom, for new opportunities, or a way to restructure life routine.

The Sun in Leo trines Uranus in Aries for discoveries, travels, and new ways of thinking. The full Moon sextiles Uranus bringing excitement and stimulation.

And love is in the air! Venus trines Pluto, and is opposite Neptune, for intensity of feelings coupled with psychological insights. If in a partnership, love can deepen. If single, relationships can be idealistic.

TRIPLE MONKEY

Monkey cutenessEnergy is high because August 18 is a Monkey day in Monkey month during Monkey year. Mars conjunct Saturn in Sagittarius slows Monkey’s fast pace. Plus Mars and Saturn square Neptune in Pisces to be more reflective, and less brash or impulsive.

mr monkeyMercury, Venus, and Jupiter in Virgo help to analyze facts and figures, all good for long-range goals and plans. Be thorough with communication, and tie up loose ends before Mercury goes retrograde on August 30 until September 21.

Monkey solves problemsCall me at 415.642.8019 in San Francisco or email susan@susanlevitt.com to schedule your tarot, astrology, or feng shui consultation.

Lunar energy for change is felt by all, and is strongest for Air signs Aquarius, Libra, and Gemini and those born in Monkey, Rat, Dragon, and Snake years.

Happy full Moon,

Susan

Preface from Introduction to Tarot

August 12, 2016 § Leave a comment

Intro to Tarot book coverPeople keep asking me how I got into reading tarot cards. I had a card reading, it came true, so I was interested! My story is in the Preface from my book INTRODUCTION TO TAROT:

I was 17 years old when I first sought answers from the tarot. I inquired about working as a florist to support myself while I studied painting at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. The final outcome card was the 8 of cups. It showed a dissatisfied person walking away, wearing a heavy cloak. Because I had already paid a deposit for classes, I ignored the tarot’s prognosis and attended floral arts school for the summer, received certification, and got a job at the Bismarck Hotel that autumn.

cups8My experience working as a florist did not fulfill my expectation of working with the beauty of nature. All bouquets were copied from a floral delivery book. Creativity and sculpture with flowers (or Japanese ikibana) was discouraged. After handling hundreds of roses, I learned to watch for thorns instead of admiring the blossoms, which had no scent because they were hothouse buds. Adding to my dissatisfaction was my irritable boss. When I tried to talk to him about his bitter disposition, he screamed at me for the last time and I quit. I left the hotel as the cold Chicago wind blew down the street. I headed to the subway station, and was putting up the collar of my heavy winter coat when it hit me – I was reenacting the exact picture on the 8 of Cups! I was actually living the tarot.

Because the reading came true, I had to have my own tarot deck and learn to read the cards. I went to the only place I knew of that sold tarot cards in Chicago, the Occult Bookshop located on North State Street. I entered the store, which I can only describe as witchy. It was stocked from floor to ceiling with every imaginable occult item, from pure and healing to negative and creepy. There were astrology maps, candles, oils, brews and elixirs, costumes, capes, and what appeared to be stuffed and mounted animals. I asked to see the tarot decks, and the large Thoth deck intrigued me. Its shamanic imagery perfectly mirrored the energy of the Occult Bookstore.

I purchased the Thoth deck and Aleister Crowley’s BOOK OF THOTH. I read the book cover to cover that night. I understood it because of my childhood interest in fairy tales, mythology, Egyptian archeology, and my hobby (bordering on obsession) foreign languages. I had attended Hebrew school as a child, studied Latin in high school, and was reading Ezra Pound’s translations from the Chinese when I was a teen. But, for me, Crowley resonated more than Pound, for he used symbols in a practical manner. Although I enjoyed reading about tarot, I discovered that one could understand what the cards meant simply by looking at the pictures.

10wheeloffortuneMy newfound interest in tarot was not well received. I was told that tarot was “the work of the devil”. People actually said to me “You will burn in hell!” and “Get thee behind me, Satan!” I felt like a pioneer keeping alive the ancient mysteries. I didn’t mind the “you will burn in hell” curses because hell was the accuser’s personal vision, not mine. But the unsolicited and unwelcome attempts to cast out my demons really did upset me.

cups1In 1980, I moved to Tucson, Arizona to attend graduate school. People were even more anti-tarot there than in Chicago. I finished my studies and then pulled tarot cards to determine a better place for me to live where my soul would be content. My choices were either New York City or San Francisco. New York was the Wheel of Fortune. San Francisco was the Ace of Cups. Both are excellent cards. But I chose the Ace of Cups because I am a Pisces with a grand water trine in my birth chart (Sun in Pisces trine Jupiter and Uranus in Cancer trine Saturn in Scorpio). I realized that in New York I would make more money, but I followed my heart.

On New Year’s day 1983, I moved to San Francisco. The reaction to my interest in tarot cards was the opposite of what I experienced in Chicago and Tucson. Many people asked me to read tarot for them. In 1986, I resigned from my job as an artist and became a professional tarot card reader. (I’ve found it more fulfilling to read tarot than to paint.) Soon my clients asked me to teach them how to read tarot cards. I typed up a few notes and passed them out in my classes. Eventually the notes grew and ended up as this book.

I invite you to join me and share the mystery.

2016 Leo New Moon Double Fire Monkey

July 29, 2016 § Leave a comment

August 2nd 2016 at 1:44 pm is a new Moon in Leo that begins Fire Monkey month in Fire Monkey year. All this Fire inspires more power, striving, and goal attainment. Energy is active to launch your success, make new choices, and create new structures. If things are swinging your way, then keep going.

apelikeOr not! As the Polish say, “Nie mój cyrk, nie moje malpy.” Not my circus, not my monkeys. If this rings true, then this month is your time to step back and enjoy the parade.

The new Moon, Sun, and Venus in fiery Leo bring love, creativity, and romance. Fortunately, the new Moon and Sun trine Saturn for needed stability in relationships.

Mercury squares Mars and Saturn, and is opposite Neptune. Communication could be confusing. Tie up loose ends before Mercury goes retrograde in Virgo on August 30. Mercury is comfortable in its rulership sign Virgo, and will be a good time to reorganize after this Fire Monkey month.

Fire Monkey month opportunities are strongest for Fire signs Leo, Aries, and Sagittarius and those born in Monkey, Rat, Dragon, Snake, and Horse years.

Call me at 415.642.8019 in San Francisco or email susan@susanlevitt.com to schedule your tarot, astrology, or feng shui consultation. Sunday August 14 is my beginner tarot class in San Francisco. Class info here.

Happy new Moon,

Susan