We all probably know people who have done everything. They are master this, exalted that and currently learning the 20 latest techniques. That is all well and good, heck, if you look at my resume it probably reads like that too. The challenge with doing 1,000,000 things is not in any one thing, but in how they relate to each other. Or in how they integrate in you.
The biggest problem, aside from the obvious jack of all trades issue, is in putting them together. It’s like that song by Johnny Cash where he steals the pieces from his job to make a car and when he puts it together, it ends up being a bit of a Frankenstein: 3 headlights, 1 tailfin and so on. Perhaps that is your aesthetic, which is fine, but building a spiritual practice out of pieces designed to be a cohesive whole is a lot easier.
How to integrate your tools!
So this spread takes a bit of a different approach – you start by choosing a card that represents you or your goal. In choosing, I don’t want you to pick a card from the deck, but instead choose one from the following list. If you are not sure which to use, you could pull them all and draw one randomly from them. This card will be put in the middle to represent the core, the center, or, if you prefer, the goal.
Magician – personal power, knowledge-driven
Hierophant – spiritual leadership, groups
Emperor – earthly power and leadership
Empress – for creative endeavours
High Priestess – personal power, intuitive-driven
Hermit – when setting out on your own
Fool – when starting over, or just beginning
So, now you have one card by itself in the middle to represent you, your aspiration, and your goal. Now place one card for each of your practices around this center, leaving a space for another card to be placed later between each card on this outer ring and the center. For example, you might be doing Yoga, studying Qabalah, Tarot, and Reiki – you would then put one card for each making sure to keep track of which is which.
Flip them all over, one at a time, and see what the cards have to say to you about this practice. Is it good? Is it neutral? Is it bad? Does the card match what you are getting from this practice, or its current state of importance in your life? Once you have a sense of the state of the union, it is time to move on to how looking for how to integrate these practices into your core.
Place another card in between each of the practices and the center. These cards will help you find integration, or perhaps point out that a parting of ways might be coming up. Go through each card one at a time and look at how they encourage or discourage the flow between the outer card and the core.
As an example, I might have chosen the Hierophant as my core, gotten the 9 of disks – gain – for my Tarot practice. This is not just a part of my practice, but is also my profession, so getting the 9 of disks is a great card – material prosperity and gain – cool! The next card, for integration, is the 8 of wands – swiftness – a card of communication. I would read this card to say that deeper communication, and success in my work will come from spreading my message. Getting word out about what I do and what I am all about.
If a negative card showed up either for a practice, or it’s integration, you should read it as a questioning of the value of that practice in your life. Though it might be tempting to ask whether it is just for now or for good it might be more fruitful to just carry the question with you into meditation. Questions to ask yourself are things like; have I learned everything I need from this? Is it off point from my primary direction? Am I staying in my strength instead of continuing to challenge myself? I am sure many other questions will present themselves to you.
Let me know in the comments how your integration is going!