I dearly love the month of October – the beautifully colored leaves, the crisp, cool air, and all of the spooktacular Halloween costumes and the preponderance of lovely chocolate candy! I love the decorating, I love carving up a pumpkin every year (although I have zero talent in this direction, and they all end up looking the same!), and I love getting small bags of (chocolate!) candy ready to give out. I also love doing late night readings on this one night of the year when the veil between the physical and spiritual worlds is at its thinnest.
I do want to take a quick look at the different names for this night, and then I want to talk about a reading that you might want to try. This night of nights can be referred to as Halloween, All Hallow’s Eve, or Samhain, and is associated with the Day of the Dead. Halloween is of relatively modern origins, having its roots in the Celtic festival of Samhain, as well as the Christian celebration of All Saints Day. It is largely a secular holiday, focusing on activities such as trick or treating, costume parties and the telling of ghost stories. All Hallow’s Eve is the night before All Saints Day (November 1st), and is a time for feasting and remembrance. Samhain is a Celtic festival celebrating summer’s end and the harvest. The Day of the Dead is a Mexican festival that brings families together to pray for and remember family and friends who have crossed over.
Rather than dialogue with ancestors, or ask for wisdom from Spirit, this year I decided to address the Shadow side of life. The thinning of the veils makes it very easy to access Spirit, but it also carries another huge dividend: it allows us to use wisdom from Spirit to bring up our Shadows from our subconscious into the light of consciousness. Think about it: Shadow would not exist without the benefit of light. This is my reading for you on this night of nights:
Integrating The Shadow
The Cauldron: What do I need to know on this night?
The Ghost: What shadow from my past is holding me back?
The Goblin: What actions can I take to understand this shadow?
The Broomstick: How can I best move forward on my path, now that I have integrated this shadow?
The cards that I drew were:
The Cauldron: King of Cups
The Ghost: Queen of Pentacles
The Goblin: Two of Cups
The Broomstick: Queen of Wands
I have chosen to illustrate this reading with four different decks: the Deviant Moon Tarot, the Fantastical Creatures Tarot, the Halloween Tarot In Tin and the Lover’s Path Tarot. Each deck brings its own energy to the table.
The Deviant Moon Tarot, by Patrick Valenza, deliberately includes images of cemeteries and mental asylums to help illuminate the deeper parts of the subconscious. The imagery is jarring, and a bit on the dark, or shadow side, yet amusing in its own way. It is all about visions and bad dreams, and acts as a wonderful gateway on this night of nights.
The Fantastical Creatures Tarot, by Lisa Hunt and DJ Conway, is a much lighter deck. Based on mythical creatures and fantasy animals, it is an awesome showcase for talented artist Lisa Hunt’s work. The one thing to note with this deck is the elemental associations: Swords are Fire, and Wands are Air. Other than that, it is based on the traditional Rider-Waite template. Deep messages have the ability to sneak through the lovely watercolors of these cards without scaring the heck out of anybody!
The Halloween Tarot In Tin, by Kipling West , is a very light, fun deck with the suits entitled Pumpkins, Imps, Ghosts and Bats, and a sleek black cat as a central character! The artwork is cartoon style, with strong coloring. As with the “Fantastical Creatures Tarot”, this deck brings messages across from Spirit in a very non-threatening manner.
The Lover’s Path Tarot, by Kris Waldherr, features classic loves stories and myths from around the world. It references love, emotions, and relationships – all of which play into our shadow selves. Waldherr notes that all love relationships mirror our relationship with ourselves. It is in our relationship with ourselves that our shadows lie. The artwork in this deck is very easy to connect to.
I hope that you have enjoyed all four of these decks, and are getting some ideas for what you want to do on your “night of nights”!
© October 2010 Bonnie Cehovet