Even though I was supposed to wait until Imbolc I did my first Camelot Oracle tarot draw. It was only supposed to be a test so that I could become familiar with the cards and the unusual layout of the pack on the “Lands Adventurous” (the eight sacred sites in the Arthurian panoply), but you know how things go… I got carried away and did a real reading. I chose to do “the big question” – after all, if you’re going to test something – test big! My question was:
“How will I fare on my spiritual path for this coming year?“
Thanks to the open-ended questioning style that John Matthews’ accompanying guide suggested this was how the request emerged. It was a powerful question.
Firstly I chose my champion – an archetype that would represent a unified approach to the answers I was seeking. I felt that Galahad would be obvious choice for this year although I have not confirmed that in my spiritual work yet. Not until Imbolc will I know whether this year is really a Galahad/Gwalchaved year or not. Nevertheless, he was the card I manually chose to represent my work this year. He was placed at Camelot.
The Path Card
The card that was chosen as defining the nature of the journey this year was The Doubtful Path. This told me that the path this year would be filled with questions, doubts and points during which I would need to make decisions on how best to proceed. Already I could see that the year would be challenging. Onwards!
The Layout of the Lands Adventurous
I decided to place an adversary card on each of the four Celtic festival points in the eight-fold layout of the Lands Adventurous. As there were eight sacred sites I could easily translate that into eight points in the Celtic Wheel fo the Year. This would give me a feeling for how the year would progress at each of these vital festival dates.
I have been taught recently how to read oracle cards through intuition rather than via any system, and that was how I read the combinations of archetype,place and time of year. I meditated on the cards and let them speak to me as they wished – through words, pictures or whole conversations. The results were as follows:-
1. Merlin in The Wells at Imbolc
“The bliss of miracle magick. The Seer opens up the eye to the possibilities in Nature, and the miracle and bliss that comes from working in Nature. Belief is key, hope must be true, and joy unleashes the force.”
I have been told about these emotions before – how joy unlocks the magick, how belief opens up the possibilities, and how hope steadies the will to achieve the result. This is both a re-affirmation and a warning. Perhaps no progress can be made this year without practising the use of these emotions in my work?
2. Linet in The Hermitage at Beltane
“A picture – a person turning into a place and back again. A choice. Then a wilderness – dark trees, tangled thorns and branches. A despairing, Lost. Lost in many ways. A lady’s laughter.”
A choice as to whether to learn to heal people as well as place. She mocks my inexperience, and challenges me to step into the wilderness to find the answer. Dare I face a test in the very heart of Nature’s wildest places? Will I emerge bolder, or broken?
3. Kay in The Green Chapel at Lammas
“Your path must have a heart. Have you lost yours? Do you know which fork in the path you should take? On the Doubtful Path your decision must be yours alone when the opportunity presents itself.”
Kay offers me the exuberance to rush headlong into the quests, but then pulls me up to ask me, “Is this actually YOUR challenge that you’re racing along with?”
I need to be able to provide a firm and authentic answer to this.
4. Blaise in Castle Mortal at Samhain
“To open up to the miracle magick it is necessary to follow the path with a strong heart, and to overcome the doubt that hold you in timidity. At this point of the year you will be forced to commit fully to the path, or veer away from it entirely. As Merlin’s Master, the buck stops here. Choose.”
No ambiguity about this challenge. I will have to answer to Blaise – to face the master with all that I have learned through the year, and to affirm my position once and for always. Will I have gained enough heart, enough strength, enough wisdom to face the challenge? Or will all be lost forever in a tragic moment of self-doubt?
As I got into the meditation for each card they began to speak to me more and more. At first I got simply impressions, phrases. By the end I was getting full conversations with the archetypal energy.
From the draw of the cards I could see that I would have a mystical start to the year, possibly with a strong vision which affirms my path. From there on things begin to twist away from this point of stability and reassurance. By Beltane I am being challenged by a female energy form, then at Lammas by a corresponding male energy form. Both are asking me to make a form decision about whether I truly believe my path. Am I truly committed to it?
By the time the wheel turns to completion at Samhain, if I have answered truly throughout the year, with authenticity, then I will receive the master’s blessing and wisdom. By this point I will be either completely committed to my spiritual path beyond doubt, or I will have given up! Interesting! I wonder what the challenges will be? Let’s see as the year progresses!