Tarot Subject of the Week: Swine Flu
The death toll from the swine flu is 113 worldwide, Mexico City is nearly quarantined, and something that sounds like the plot of a Stephen King novel is now the top story on every media outlet known to man.
My mother sent me an e-mail saying I’m supposed to wash my hands for at least 45 seconds with VERY HOT WATER, and I should wash them every 30 seconds. Furthermore, I’m to stand at least 6-feet away from everyone when I talk to them, and carry a 5.5 foot cattle prod just in case anyone gets too close. I kid you not. My mom does not screw around about personal hygiene.
So for my very first Tarot Tuesday reading for planet Earth, the Swine Flu seems to be a pretty worthwhile subject.
The Tarot Spread
I wanted to start simple, and so I went with the simplest (and most general) of the tarot spreads, the 3-card ‘Life Reading’ or ‘Past, Present and Future’ Spread. Three cards are laid out in order left to right, the leftmost card representing the past or influence of the situation, the middle card representing the present and the rightmost card representing the future or potential outcome.
The spread falls as-such:
- Temperance (Inverted)
- Four of cups
- The Moon (Inverted)
I approach interpretation on two levels; both analytical and intuitive. Some people favor their gut instinct when reading Tarot, others like to look the meanings up in a book. Neither way is ‘wrong’, but I like to take a balanced approach and get both halves of the brain involved.
Inverted Temperance in the Past position screams “Out Of Balance”. It’s almost self-explanatory on both intuitive and analytical levels.
The Four of Cups in the Present position represents confusion and indecision on an emotional level. Again, you don’t have to be psychic to figure this one out.
The Moon normally concerns dreams, intuition and creativity. Inverted, it reminds us that these aspects can cloud matters and get in the way of clear thinking. Here it occurs in the Future position.
Now is not the time to hide in the basement and drink bleach. It’s a time to be rational, not reactionary.
It’s obvious what has led us to this sad state of affairs. Human beings put their tongues where they clearly don’t belong. We don’t wash our hands often enough, and we stand too close together when we talk.
Far worse than our physical hygiene issues, we have intellectual hygiene issues. We digest a lot of crappy, sugar-coated, unsanitized, sensationalized news – far more dangerous than licking a pig’s nose, if you ask me. We can monitor the CDC directly to tell us the nanosecond each and every case of flu breaks out around the globe – a paranoid schizophrenic’s dream/nightmare. Any wonder we’re dazed and confused?
Did you know just how dangerous the standard strain of influenza is? No? Then you don’t have enough information to process the “news” you’re getting. The flu virus mutates constantly, creating new strains all the time. It kills hundreds of people every day in the US. Hundreds. Every Day.
Yes, the Swine Flu is new and different. Yes, it kills people. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss. But watch the masses freak out as the cases spread out on this map.
Some people are fond of saying, “If you aren’t outraged, then you aren’t paying attention.” (A False Dichotomy by the way) This tarot spread tells us the opposite, “Don’t get upset until you have all the facts.”
Now is not the time to hide in the basement and drink bleach. It’s a time to be rational, not reactionary. I hope you don’t need a pandemic as motivation to wash your hands or clean your nasty keyboard.
Keep your nose clean, and I’ll see you next week,
PS – If you have a different interpretation of this tarot spread or other useful wisdom to share, drop it in the comments below. If you want to perform your own tarot readings, just link them up on twitter.com with the #tarottuesday hashtag. Don’t have a tarot deck? No problem. Go to www.ifate.com and use the free online tarot spread generator.