The Traditional Horoscope Spread ~ A January Reading


The following is an email reading (handwritten reading) done for a client this January.  I’m publishing it here (anonymously, of course), so you can see what a Traditional Horoscope Spread is like, and you can also see why it might take 7-14 days to receive this reading.  Most of the time, these readings run 2,000-3,000 words; but this reading unexpectedly ballooned up to 5,000+ words.  The cards had a lot to say, as I told my client.

The tarot deck used for this reading was Sacred Circle Tarot.

To book a personal reading with me, through a variety of mediums, visit my tarot site:

And now, on with our reading ~



1. The Self ~ The World Tree ®; Page of Wands (Potential); 2/cups (Harmony)

Your world appears to be upside down in some (or many) manners.  As in, what’s black is white, what’s white is black; what’s good is bad, what’s bad is good.  I’m not sure, at this point in the reading, why there is such a topsy-turvey nature to your world.  Also is the idea of “opposing energies”, as in the bright white energy of the sun versus the dark and mysterious energy of the moon, which also brings to mind male/female, yin-yang.  Opposition, and that “upside down” feeling again.  Since this card was drawn for The Self, I suspect that this is how you feel most of the time, and this either is your world, or how you feel your world is.

The young male figure (Page of Wands) seems determined, and I have the feeling that there is an influential figure in his life that he “bows to”, in a figurative sense.  The phrase “on bended knee” comes to mind, and this implies to me an act of submission; or an act of respect; or the idea of someone who is trying to stave off something that is either threatening or disturbing to them; and also the idea of a religious or spiritual ritual.  The personality on this card feels dark, maybe angry, maybe unhappy, or troubled in some way.  The idea of the dragonfly also comes to mind, and with this the idea of time being very fleeting; of directed and pointed energy; of intense concentration on a task or goal.  Since you have directly inquired about your son, this card could be one indication of this man, but it’s probably not the only indication that will rise in this reading.

The two of cups is a very promising card, as it’s title implies (Harmony); and with it comes the promise of harmonious relationships, if not in the present, sometime in the future.  There is also the idea of a lot of energy going back and forth, back and forth, though this isn’t necessarily all positive energy, but it’s still a movement of energy that doesn’t seem to have ceased.  This may imply someone you are, or were, close to, as your mother.  There is also the idea that something needs to be set free, turned loose, let go.  There is also the idea that the silver-lining you seek, or the end of the rainbow that is desired, is still a long way off, but it’s there.

2. Money & Possessions ~ 6/discs (Bounty); The Star; 3/wands (Foundation)

This is actually a very promising set of cards for the topic of this position.  There is the idea of having come out from underneath something, or the idea of having “dug yourself out”, and I’m assuming that in this case it implies digging yourself out of some sort of financial crisis.  The color purple stands out for me with this card, and with that the idea of “spirituality” and “spiritism”; I’m not sure whether this also is connected in some way to your finances and possibly has something to do with how you’d make your living, or it’s reflecting a large segment of your life and what it’s all about.  There is also the idea of a time for flowering, for blossoming, for fertility at it’s most positive.  Again, there is the strong idea of someone “coming out of a dark place”.

From The Star comes the idea of “flames of hope”, the idea of having to clear the way of old debris to make way for new things.  There is the idea of following the star (much as the wise-men), in order to find something amazing and wonderful when you reach a particular point.  And I believe that this is referring to a period of time in here somewhere, that you will not enjoy the privilege of immediate gratification.  There is also the idea of fortification; the idea of an oasis or sacred space surrounded by something built up for protection, whether it’s to keep something out, or to keep something in; the idea of stones and bricks and mortar; the idea of spiked timbers, all of these things creating a wall of protection, or a wall of isolation.  This may be referring to a couple things: 1) past life associations; 2) the idea that you have built a wall around yourself, whether an actual physical wall, or a mental/emotional wall.

The three of wands connects beautifully here with the idea of a contract, a business negotiation, a partnership of some kind.  Time-wise, there is also a lot of “waiting” that comes with the three of wands, not necessarily long periods of waiting, but waiting, never-the-less.  Again, the idea of a rainbow in the distance.  I have the impression that a great deal of patience is going to be required on your part to achieve your goals, to reach your dream.  Finally, some idea of timing is coming through with this card. (Timing in tarot comes to me either through moon phases, or seasons, and often with the idea of foliage and greenery.)  It’s telling me that when the strawberries are blooming, this will be a very pivotal time for you in general, and a pivotal time for you where money, finances, and legal matters are involved.

3. Communications ~ 4/swords ® (Rest); King/swords (Air); 4/wands (Development)

The four of swords tells me of a much needed period of rest and recuperation.  Also, the phrase “pushing up daisies” comes to mind; the idea of a stillness before a storm, or the calmness just after one.  This card usually shows up in a reading when a definite time-out of some kind is needed; it’s saying “chill and be still”.  I also have the idea that whatever is in the works, whatever is going on in a helter-skelter fashion is going to come to an abrupt halt.  There is the idea of a great need for peace, order, and priority.  As far as connecting this card to the idea of “Communications”, there has to be quiet on all sides in order for anyone’s voice to be heard.

This King is rife with the arrogant, overbearing, super-intelligent, “air” of male energy.  He considers himself an authority on most subjects and expects everyone else to as well.  His positive points, and he does have them, is his intelligence, his dogged determination to see a goal through to the end, his ability to harness great power within himself.  This should be the perfect “King” for communication, but this is often not the case, simply because he will not listen to anyone elses opinion, or if he does, he doesn’t take it seriously.  It is almost impossible to argue with this King, because he has an uncanny knack and ability to turn another person’s words around to fit his conception of truth and reality.

The idea of “the cornerstone” comes to mind, a foundation, either one that is needed, or one that might already be in place.  All good communication will come from a strong foundation, a good base; if this is lacking, so will communication be lacking.  There is the idea of a spinning wheel, of many different directions you might take, and the awesome questioning wonder of “Which direction will be the right direction?”  But there comes with the last card of this group also the feeling of confusion, of not knowing which way to go, of puzzlement and indecision.

Communication is key to so many areas and levels of our lives, if communication doesn’t run smoothly, the whole machine (our life) will not run smoothly.

4. Beginnings & Home Life ~ 6/swords (Solace); 3/swords ® (Discord); 9/discs ® (Gain)

In traditional decks the six of swords is the divorce card, and the three of swords is the card of heartache and sorrow, of unhappy love and affairs.  I hate saying all this, but that’s the truth, and with that said, I’ll look at these cards, relabeled as they are in this deck, and see what else I can pull from them:

With the card of Solace comes the idea that you find comfort in something close to you, within your home or familial setting.  There is a certain sense of peace to this card, actually, and a sense of gentle movement, which implies to me that your life is not stagnant, that there is forward progression.  Also, the idea of communication, like a gentle whispering in your ear; the idea of something sort of left hanging up in the air, as a sense of indecision or inaction.

The three of swords being reversed gives me the impression that either much of the unhappiness associated with this card is in your past, or it’s something relatively fresh, but you’re coping with it and working at moving beyond this point.  There is the idea of painful “issues of the heart” (whether emotional issues of love and romance, or actual literal issues with the heart); there is the idea of pointed and deliberate attacks (verbal); there is the idea of third party, someone who’s influence has a negative effect; there is the idea of “topsy-turvey” (this is the phrase that came into my mind).

The third card of this set winds things up on a materialistic level.  Since it’s reversed it has a somewhat less jumpin’ over the moon, slap-happy feel about it.  It implies to me that once money and finances were abundant and stable, and now they might not be so much.  There is the idea of storm clouds in the distance, or the idea of having just come through a storm; there is the idea of “rebuilding”; there is the idea of finding solid ground again, the idea of seeking and working towards stability.

5. Pleasure, Creativity, & Sex ~ 8/discs (Skill); 7/discs ® (Prudence); 2/swords (Opposition)

My first impression is that what you do for a living is a total polar opposite from what you do for fun.

The eight of discs tells me that you get a lot of pleasure out of what you do to make a living, and/or there is a lot of skill and creativity involved with it.  Also comes the idea that something might be missing from your job, along with it the feeling of anticipation and a sense of impatience perhaps. I’m  getting the impression that you’re either waiting for a raise or a promotion, or both naturally, assuming one goes with the other.  The seven of discs with these three cards, in it’s reversed state, implies that this won’t be coming, it won’t be coming as soon as you’d like, or the increase in income will be lower than anticipated.  My last impression from this card is something brewing on the horizon; whether this is a new adventure in the land of employment, or this is a disruption or over-haul at your present place of employment, I’m not sure.  But the clouds are gathering, so be ready.

The seven of discs very strongly tells me you need to tend your money garden with tender loving care now to insure a solid foundation in the future.  Spring time is also relevant in some way for you, early fresh spring-time, when the early flowers are blossoming.  I’m also getting the idea from this card of some sort of opposition, or a group of people who have chosen sides, a sort of “one against many” feeling, as though a group of individuals might be ganging up on someone, possibly because of personal differences, opinions, or loyalties; but I’m also getting the impression of a group of people working to change someone’s mind.

This feeling is enhanced with the two of swords and the idea of opposition.  This is a card of butting heads, and this can viewed two ways; not only a butting of heads with another individual, but a conflict within yourself, which is especially strong when there are decisions to be made.  I’m getting the impression that there is a lot left “up in the air” with someone; that communication is tangled, misunderstood, or non-existent.  I’m getting the feeling that ties are broken, or at least for now the pathway that you had to each other has been erased or cut.  I always have the impression of a safe place; or a mutual location connected to both of you that would be good meeting ground; or even of this location being the central core of a disagreement, the topic of the disagreement.  There is also the feeling of stubborn energy, an unwillingness to compromise.

6. Health & Work ~ Death; 5/wands (Grounding); 5/discs (Restrictions)

All three cards together give me this very quick definite peek into the areas of health and work:  huge transition or change; a reconnect with the physical aspects of life, with perhaps a bit of confusion tossed in; and a tightening of finances, a tightening of the belt required.

There is the feeling of a lot of patience with this card, as though this life transition, whatever it may be, has been in the wings for some time, something that is actually beneficial, even if disruptive at first.  There is a lot of Full Moon energy connected to your work and your health; the time of the Full Moon being a focal point, and its energy being linked to you in these areas of life in a very powerful way.  There is the idea of the “Time of the Crone”, if this is not signifying you, there must be someone close to you who fits with this.  There is the idea of hesitation, a reluctance, or a natural “taking of one’s time” to complete what must be done.  There is the idea of something powerful coming on the horizon, and positively the idea of something in your life being time sensitive.

Fortitude and staunchness come with the next card.  It has a totally different energy than the five of wands in more traditional decks.  There’s more of a peace about it, a definite knowing, having a definite ground plan, being organized and ready for whatever it is you’re facing.  There is the idea of having come a long way, the idea of having withstood rough ground and what some people would consider monumental mountains that have been crossed.  You’ve worked hard to reach the point you are at now.

With the five of discs comes the idea that your money is tied up in something, whether a business, or investments, in some sort of legal action, or with another individual.  There is also the idea of either something in the works, or something left up in the air (money-wise).  There is the idea of green lush pastures in the picture, bringing to mind for me bounty, plenty, and the idea of growth and development, as well as success.

7. Partnership & Marriage ~ King/cups (Water); The Green Man; The Lovers

Wow, you couldn’t have had more “relationship” oriented cards come up if you tried.  At first glance, the King is the lover in your life (more about him in a minute); The Green Man seems to imply that there’s something new about your relationship, or your relationship is new, you’re both fairly young, or your partner is younger than you. That seems to imply a lot, I know, but there is the feeling of “freshness” about it; and of course, The Lovers are what they are.

This King is one of the most romantic of the lot.  He also tends to be hedonistic, and he often has difficulty expressing himself (think of the stereotypical image of the old-movie leading man, the tall quiet type, Gary Cooper always comes to mind for me.).  Because he keeps his feelings to himself, those close to him may not even realize how deeply he feels things, everything, because he will never tell you when he’s been hurt.  You’ll have to pick that up through other cues, sometimes subtle, and sometimes not so subtle.  This is the King that has the most difficulty controlling his appetites (there’s that hedonistic energy); if he loves food, he will eat to excess; if he loves the spirits, he’ll drink to excess; and if he loves just about anything else, he’ll jump in with both feet and enjoy it to the max.  In spite of his faults, he has a sense of loyalty about him, and he will stand staunchly by his family or his partner, defending them the best he can against whatever comes along (as long as he doesn’t have to make a speech).

The Green Man, what can I say, he implies to me Beltane and earthy sexuality, healthy appetites; something that is fresh and new, or the idea that you have the ability to keep your love life fresh and new.  There is the idea of future growth, in that what you have is not all there will be, there’s more to come.  There is the idea of fertility, fertility within yourself, fertility within your partnership, fertility within the world, lush growth.  There is the idea of something in the early stages, and beginnings are always inspiring and laced with hope for the future.  There is the idea of a man in your life who is at his peak right now, someone rich with the taste of life.

The Lovers culminates this section of the reading with the implication of a partnership, a passionate love, a celebration of a sacred union, a joining of soul mates.  There is also the idea that this energy may have reached across eons of time during the course of many life times.  You keep finding each other…Out of undying devotion and love?  Or because there is something that is left unfinished?

8. Death & Regeneration ~ Queen of discs ® (Expression); The High Priest ®; 4/cups ® (Discontent)

As you can see, all the cards for this section have come up reversed, which changes things up a bit, adding a new twist to the scenario.  First impression with all three cards:  As happy and yippity-skippity as the previous relationship cards were, I’m sensing here that there is a man in your life with which communication has stopped, you’re not talking, or you can’t get through. (Of course, this doesn’t necessarily have to be a partner, it could be a father, or father-figure).  It may also imply not only a rift, but a separation of some kind more profound (perhaps physical, or attributed to mental conditions) that prevent communication.  Also, the four of cups implies something that you don’t want to face, or you have come through something that has been very difficult and painful for you.

I know, this sounds and has the feel of something ominous, doesn’t it.  (Have you lost a parent? Or have you been widowed during your life? Or you have a family member with a degenerative disease?…these are rhetorical questions, you need not reply; these are just thoughts that have crossed through my mind and found their way to the computer keyboard.

This Queen, so aptly titled “Expression” seems oddly quiet.  She isn’t talking about something; she’s keeping her deepest darkest thoughts to herself, private ruminations.  The landscape for The Queen of discs, usually very fertile and lush in most decks, is rather barren and bleak in this deck, implying to me that this woman needs to touch base somewhere with someone with whom she can pour out her deepest feelings knowing that there will be no judgments, or lectures.  (Perhaps this Queen has a secret?)

The High Priest implies several things for me, first is just a lack of personal power.  The idea that you don’t feel you have control of a situation (and honestly, considering the topic of this section, none of us really have control in this area of life).  Some of us will go through several deaths in a single lifetime, until we survive the process of metamorphosis (like the butterfly in the chrysalis), and we are reborn into a new version of ourselves.  This card can also imply to me a male figure, someone who has lost their personal power for some reason, or someone who has lost their control and influence over you.  There comes with this card also the idea of “standing your ground”; the idea of a staunchness and determination that keeps you firmly rooted and on the right path.  There is the idea of having come through storm clouds, or at least of surviving unexpected surprises that life has slung your way.

The four of cups reversed…whatever it is that you didn’t (or don’t) want to deal with; there is light at the end of the tunnel, and as the old saying goes, “This, too, shall pass.”

9.  Mental Exploration & Journeys ~ The Chariot ®; The Warrior ®; Knight/discs (Husbandry)

Again, all three of these cards are reversed.  First impression:  Lots of movement and travels, either physically (as in actual journeys around the world), or inwardly (as in lots of self-exploration); and actually, I’m feeling a bit of both energies here.  I also have the impression that you have a partner with whom you may have enjoyed many adventures, that this wasn’t necessarily a solo experience.

The Chariot implies to me someone who has a handle on life, someone at the helm of their ship, someone plotting their own course, someone choosing their own path, someone who’s not afraid to step up and take charge.  The reversal of this card implies that this might have been what you’ve always tried to do, or what you’ve always wanted to do, and you may or may not have always been successful at it.  But by golly, you’re not afraid to jump in that chariot and grab those horses by the reins!  That says a lot, and it may have resulted in a few wild rides.

The warrior implies to me someone who is not afraid to try new things; someone who loves the adventure of exploration, someone who thrives on new experiences.  Again, this card is also reversed, which only makes it seem more interesting to me, and hints at interesting or unusual experiences or confrontations you may have had because of this character trait.  I’m also getting the idea of a very strong personality, maybe even a tad wee-bit of stubbornness thrown in for good measure.

This Knight can be a messenger, but he just doesn’t feel that way here.  To tell you the truth, he feels more like a comrade, a partner in your wild rides and exciting journeys.  He is someone who explores the world with you and is almost as strong and devil-may-care about it.  But I also get the impression that outsiders viewing the two of you together would declare this Knight as the “level-headed” one, maybe slightly less willing to take risks.  The Knight of discs is one of the most stable and dependable souls of the court cards, he can also be the party-pooper (though in his reversed condition, he tends to follow along and join in, even when his better judgment says, “Huh?”)  That’s okay though, you temper each other well, and you enjoy your adventures (both physical journeys, as well as spiritual and mental journeys).  It’s a good match, and makes for good experiences.

10. Career Achievements ~ King/discs (Earth); The Wheel; Sacrifice

At first glance, this King adds stability to your projects (as an energy); as an individual he may be someone who is pivotal to your work world in some way.  There is also the essence of something having come full circle, which can imply the ultimate achievement and signal a moving on to other projects or dreams; and the last card (reminiscent of The Hanged man in more traditional decks) implies a sacrifice on your part to reach your dreams, to achieve your goal.

If this King is an actual individual in your work space, you will find him very stable and down-to-earth (no pun intended), but you will also find him extremely controlling, difficult to persuade to new ideas, rather calculating at times, and very paranoid about “who’s with him, and who’s against him”.  If you are someone who is imbued with the privilege of being within his inner circle, you had to get there by not disagreeing with him (at least not to his face).  This King just also happens to have a tremendously sharp head on his shoulders when it comes to matters of money, finance, and business, so there will be times when what he says is actually the best course to follow.  I know, it can be confusing; but this individual is very complicated, and the situations you find yourself in with him may also be complicated as well.  Follow your instincts.

You will be finishing up something in some way, when it comes to your work or employment.  This can be one of those pivotal moments that tends to be clique, “one door is closing so that another may open”, but it’s true.  There will also be a sense of fiery passion connected to whatever it is that you’re finishing up, implying lots of emotion involved with the process.  Also, I’m getting the idea of feeling haunted by something, whether this is still connected to employment and how things are winding up, or whether the cards are revealing a spirit who stays close to you (possibly someone who has passed, if not a spiritual guide, and sometimes this entity turns out to be one in the same). There is also the idea of going to sea, looking outward to new horizons, sunsets, twilight, and the magical thresholds implied.

Ah, sacrifice.  What is it that you’re sacrificing?  That’s the question.  Another energy coming with this card implies that you’ve spent a great deal of your time (and your life) already sacrificing to get where you are today, doing things for others, never putting yourself first.  This card often comes up in such circumstances when it’s time for someone to shake the sacrificial dust from their feet and start living for themselves.

11. Friends, Wishes, & Ambitions ~ Queen/swords ® (Imagination); Knight/swords ® (Change); Rebirth

This is the most solitary of the Queens, the loner, the epitome of the single woman who not only survives but thrives.  Traditionally, she’s the Divorced Woman, but this card can also imply a woman who is a work-aholic, intent on her ambitions, putting her aspirations and goals much higher on the list than some of the other Queens might.  As a friend, she is beautifully eloquent, if not sometimes quiet during introspective chats; she is loyal; she is incredibly intelligent and has the mental agility to view a situation with supreme objectivity, allowing her to give wise advice (she’d make a good attorney).  This  Queen often gives the impression of being cold and aloof, but this is just an exterior armor she uses for self-protection.  The Queen of swords is actually much more sensitive than most people realize, and she is able to be hurt very deeply. (Though she might view her sensitivity as a weakness.)

Another idea, that is coming through this card is the idea of Eostre (or Easter, if you’re Christian) and early springtime as being pivotal for you in some way.  The energy of this Queen will be especially strong then, her influence keenly felt.  “Take up my sword.”, she seems to say.

This knight is often a messenger, implying unexpected and often problematic topics that come with his messages.  But as an individual, and it’s this that I’m focusing on here, this card implies a younger male who can have a very sharp tongue and a very large ego, which is almost always an unfortunate combination.  He thinks very highly of himself, and he often views the rest of us as slightly inferior to him in some way.  As with all the court cards for the swords, there is often profound intelligence and a gift for words, analytical thinking, (sometimes scheming), ingenuity, and slyness.  (He would also make a good attorney, or a secret agent.)  All of these marvelous mental attributes does not automatically mean that this Knight uses good judgment.

I love the energy coming from the third card…Rebirth.  Your wishes and hopes are on their way, though in its reversed state, you haven’t quite reached them yet, there may be a few more obstacles to step around, or some more “stuff” to get cleared out of the proverbial closet, but hope and promise are on the horizon.  In the coming year, I see you rediscovering yourself, re-inventing yourself, opening new doorways and channels, exploring new paths.  Some of what you see, you will like and want to keep; other things you might choose to leave by the wayside in order to continue your search, your exploration.  Much of this will be an inward process, but this inward process will eventually become larger than can be contained, and it will spill over into the world of manifestation, into your daily viewable life.  It will be a good thing.

12. Secrets, Sorrows, & Self-Destructive Tendencies ~ 6/wands ® (Success); 10/wands (Force); Knight/wands (Adventurer)

At first glance, the idea I’m getting is that sometimes you have a tendency to sabotage your own success, or you don’t have enough faith in your own ability.  There’s also the idea of success at a price, whatever this price might be.  I’m also getting the impression that you have tied up a lot of yourself in the pursuit of success, you might have put all your eggs in one basket, or you are just extremely focused when you’re working on a project, kind of like a tunnel-vision feeling (this would go along with the work-aholic.)  Also, you are extremely industrious, a hard worker, and you’ve shouldered the brunt of responsibility, possibly for a long time, either in a work environment, or a home environment, or both.  With this comes the idea of being tired, a need for a break.  Don’t work yourself into the ground; everyone needs a period of respite, a time to replenish and refresh themselves…body, mind, and spirit.

This Knight, and all the male court cards for this reading, actually, are very strong, sometimes overpowering male figures.  As I said, Knights are messengers as well, and this Knight is haling you down with a message concerning finances, business, money.  This is an individual who’s either trying to get your attention, or he’s someone from your past, an old acquaintance or partner.  The energy from this card is someone who’s got something to tell you and they’re trying to get your attention (I know, I already said this, but it’s coming through so strong, as though he’s saying, “Tell her again.”).  With the section of this reading and the topics involved, there is an element of sadness to this Knight…as though he’s waving from a location or point far away, or long ago.

I usually like to end a reading on a positive note, which is why I’ve often wondered why this traditional spread ends on such an odd topic.  With that said, I think your life, as revealed to me through the cards, is really quite remarkable, and there are definitely good things still to come for you.  Look to the horizon, keep a light heart, excel, succeed, and embrace what Spirit sends your way.



2 thoughts on “The Traditional Horoscope Spread ~ A January Reading

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