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Thread: The Eluine Cycle tarot spread

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    The Eluine Cycle tarot spread

    So thanks to Rafe in this thread here ...this is now a thing.

    A thing in progress, really. I was hoping for feedback from the other members of the forum who've read the books, too.

    The Eluine Cycle Tarot Spread

    kushiel.jpg

    1. Elua
    2. Namaah
    3. Camael
    4. Kushiel
    5. Anael
    6. Shemhazai
    7. Azza
    8. Eisheth
    9. Cassiel

    I chose the order of the cards based loosely on what I felt was right, and the lore behind the Eluine Cycle. This wiki page describes it fairly well. Elua, son of the One God, is in the centre surrounded by his Angels. To his right, stands Namaah, the Angel of Sexuality, the first to come to him, who lain with strangers in order to feed Elua. Protecting them all is Camael, the Martial Angel. Next follows Kushiel, the Angel of Justice, and to balance him out on the far left, Eisheth, whose domain is healing. Anael and Azza share similar yet opposite positions, because of their duties as the Angel of the Land, and the Angel of Navigation. Bringing up the rear is Shemhazai, whose domain is knowledge. And lastly, Cassiel, who chose no land, and believes himself anathema for choosing love for Elua above all things.

    To read it:

    1. Elua: What must I sacrifice for the good of others?
    2. Namaah: Where must the love in my heart be focused?
    3. Camael: What must I defend against? (within yourself, or externally)
    4. Kushiel: What suffering must I face to repent?
    5. Anael: What wisdom or skill must I learn from the land?
    6. Shemhazai: What knowledge do I require?
    7. Azza: Where must I travel? (within yourself, or externally)
    8. Eisheth: What must I heal first? (within yourself, or externally)
    9. Cassiel: What must I stand vigil for? (Clarification: What is worth so much that you will stand patiently waiting?)

    Thoughts?
    “The world is big and I want to have a good look at it before it gets dark.” – John Muir

    Mostly art.

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    Re: The Eluine Cycle tarot spread

    I love what you've come up with. It was something on my mind last night and this morning, but I hadn't been able to really sit down and work on it (my in-laws just surprised me by picking up both the kids, YAY! Now I have time to test it out!). I'm glad you beat me to it because I really like it!

    I'm wondering about the significance of the Elua card - you know, I would almost switch Naamah's meaning with Elua's meaning. I get the sense that Elua would represent love, whereas Naamah would represent devotion, or passion.
    I might use the question "What must I fight against?" for Camael so as not to exclude the idea of fighting offensively for something.
    I might use "What suffering must I endure?" for Kushiel - only because the concept of "repenting" is one I struggle with personally.
    I've got some complicated feelings about Anael. His domain seems so limiting here! The only thing I can think of aside from yours is something like, "What should I cultivate or nurture?" (within or without oneself)
    For Azza, I'm thinking of something like, "What will guide me?" which seems more connected to navigation than travel.
    For Eiseth, an alternative question could be something like "Where will I find healing?" or "How will I be healed?"
    And you know, Cassiel could also be devotion, like Naamah. After all, he stayed by Elua's side as long as he could. I would probably associate devotion with him more than Naamah, now that I think about it.

    But I'm just thinking out loud. I'll mull it over and try out the spread, see how it works for me.

    Thanks for doing this, V!

    EDIT: Another possible way of looking at it is to simply consider the angel in question and all that they are associated with when considering the meaning of the card, so as not to limit the angel to only one of their domains - for example, limiting Eisheth only to healing when she is also associated with music and fertility.

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    sea witch thalassa's Avatar
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    Re: The Eluine Cycle tarot spread

    Okay...just because I need to see it this way, for my own head to visualize and think about it...

    1. Elua:
    What must I sacrifice for the good of others? Where must the love in my heart be focused?
    2. Namaah: Where must the love in my heart be focused? What must I sacrifice for the good of others?
    3. Camael: What must I defend against? (within yourself, or externally) What must I fight against?
    4. Kushiel: What suffering must I face to repent? What suffering must I endure?
    5. Anael: What wisdom or skill must I learn from the land? What should I cultivate or nurture?
    6. Shemhazai: What knowledge do I require?
    7. Azza: Where must I travel? (within yourself, or externally) What will guide me?
    8. Eisheth: What must I heal first? (within yourself, or externally) Where will I find healing?" or "How will I be healed?
    9. Cassiel: What must I stand vigil for?

    (V's first suggestions) (Rafe's suggestions)

    My thoughts: I'm not sure if this needs really specific questions, as much as a way of thinking about what the central question is. I think the Elua card should be a sort of questing/question card...and the rest of the cards should address what needs to be overcome or achieved for the Elua card to manifest that corresponds with the "domains" of Elua's companions.

    If the precept of Elua is "love as thou wilt"...then maybe it should be an indicator of the
    main "problem" of who/what/where one is placing/focusing their love, or the present state of mind/present state of affairs towards their love.

    Namaah--what needs to be sacrificed for ____________

    Camael--what forces may appear in opposition?

    Kushiel--what suffering may occur to achieve _________? -OR- what suffering will __________ cause? -OR- ...what is the cost of _________?

    Anael--what area do I need to focus on building to achieve _________?

    Shemhazai--what information or skill do I need to learn or develop for ____________?

    Azza--where/when might I find assistance or guidance?

    Eisheth--what healing/mending needs to be achieved for __________?

    Cassiel--Is ______________ worth it? ...I think this is really the fundamental question of Cassiel. Sure, "love as thou wilt"...but at the end, was it worth it? Only Cassiel turns back, for a last look. Only Cassiel remains true to his oath, while breaking it just the same...for love. Is the object of our will, of our devotion, of our heart...is it worth our sacrifice, our fight, our suffering, our building, our quest for knowlege, the help we need to call on upon the way, our healing (sometimes healing hurts)?



    ....if there could be a way for one "side" to be what to achieve vs what to overcome...that might be good too---I'll need to look at the map of the spread a bit more




    “You have never answered but you did not need to. If I stand at the ocean I can hear you with your thousand voices. Sometimes you shout, hilarious laughter that taunts all questions. Other nights you are silent as death, a mirror in which the stars show themselves. Then I think you want to tell me something, but you never do. Of course I know I have written letters to no-one. But what if I find a trident tomorrow?" ~~Letters to Poseidon, Cees Nooteboom

    “We still carry this primal relationship to the Earth within our consciousness, even if we have long forgotten it. It is a primal recognition of the wonder, beauty, and divine nature of the Earth. It is a felt reverence for all that exists. Once we bring this foundational quality into our consciousness, we will be able to respond to our present man-made crisis from a place of balance, in which our actions will be grounded in an attitude of respect for all of life. This is the nature of real sustainability.”
    ~~Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

    "We are the offspring of history, and must establish our own paths in this most diverse and interesting of conceivable universes--one indifferent to our suffering, and therefore offering us maximal freedom to thrive, or to fail, in our own chosen way."
    ~~Stephen Jay Gould, Wonderful Life: The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History

    "Humans are not rational creatures. Now, logic and rationality are very helpful tools, but there’s also a place for embracing our subjectivity and thinking symbolically. Sometimes what our so-called higher thinking can’t or won’t see, our older, more primitive intuition will." John Beckett

    Pagan Devotionals, because the wind and the rain is our Bible

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    Re: The Eluine Cycle tarot spread

    I think that's an excellent suggestion, Thal. I suppose what we've done so far in this thread is to create two different spreads - one is a general "current state" spread and one addresses a specific problem or issue.

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    Re: The Eluine Cycle tarot spread

    Quote Originally Posted by Raphaeline View Post
    I love what you've come up with. It was something on my mind last night and this morning, but I hadn't been able to really sit down and work on it (my in-laws just surprised me by picking up both the kids, YAY! Now I have time to test it out!). I'm glad you beat me to it because I really like it!

    I'm wondering about the significance of the Elua card - you know, I would almost switch Naamah's meaning with Elua's meaning. I get the sense that Elua would represent love, whereas Naamah would represent devotion, or passion.
    I might use the question "What must I fight against?" for Camael so as not to exclude the idea of fighting offensively for something.
    I might use "What suffering must I endure?" for Kushiel - only because the concept of "repenting" is one I struggle with personally.
    I've got some complicated feelings about Anael. His domain seems so limiting here! The only thing I can think of aside from yours is something like, "What should I cultivate or nurture?" (within or without oneself)
    For Azza, I'm thinking of something like, "What will guide me?" which seems more connected to navigation than travel.
    For Eiseth, an alternative question could be something like "Where will I find healing?" or "How will I be healed?"
    And you know, Cassiel could also be devotion, like Naamah. After all, he stayed by Elua's side as long as he could. I would probably associate devotion with him more than Naamah, now that I think about it.

    But I'm just thinking out loud. I'll mull it over and try out the spread, see how it works for me.

    Thanks for doing this, V!

    EDIT: Another possible way of looking at it is to simply consider the angel in question and all that they are associated with when considering the meaning of the card, so as not to limit the angel to only one of their domains - for example, limiting Eisheth only to healing when she is also associated with music and fertility.
    I completely agree with you about switching Elua and Namaah. I was trying to stress Namaah's love of Elua, but what I should have stressed was her sacrifice for his love.

    I'm glad you commented on Kushiel as well. I wasn't entirely comfortable with how I had worded it, but because next to Namaah, I understand Kushiel the best, I really couldn't figure out how to put my thoughts into words. You did a much better job of it.

    And I like the slight alterations to the other angels.

    Quote Originally Posted by thalassa View Post
    Okay...just because I need to see it this way, for my own head to visualize and think about it...

    1. Elua:
    What must I sacrifice for the good of others? Where must the love in my heart be focused?
    2. Namaah: Where must the love in my heart be focused? What must I sacrifice for the good of others?
    3. Camael: What must I defend against? (within yourself, or externally) What must I fight against?
    4. Kushiel: What suffering must I face to repent? What suffering must I endure?
    5. Anael: What wisdom or skill must I learn from the land? What should I cultivate or nurture?
    6. Shemhazai: What knowledge do I require?
    7. Azza: Where must I travel? (within yourself, or externally) What will guide me?
    8. Eisheth: What must I heal first? (within yourself, or externally) Where will I find healing?" or "How will I be healed?
    9. Cassiel: What must I stand vigil for?

    (V's first suggestions) (Rafe's suggestions)

    My thoughts: I'm not sure if this needs really specific questions, as much as a way of thinking about what the central question is. I think the Elua card should be a sort of questing/question card...and the rest of the cards should address what needs to be overcome or achieved for the Elua card to manifest that corresponds with the "domains" of Elua's companions.

    If the precept of Elua is "love as thou wilt"...then maybe it should be an indicator of the
    main "problem" of who/what/where one is placing/focusing their love, or the present state of mind/present state of affairs towards their love.

    Namaah--what needs to be sacrificed for ____________

    Camael--what forces may appear in opposition?

    Kushiel--what suffering may occur to achieve _________? -OR- what suffering will __________ cause? -OR- ...what is the cost of _________?

    Anael--what area do I need to focus on building to achieve _________?

    Shemhazai--what information or skill do I need to learn or develop for ____________?

    Azza--where/when might I find assistance or guidance?

    Eisheth--what healing/mending needs to be achieved for __________?

    Cassiel--Is ______________ worth it? ...I think this is really the fundamental question of Cassiel. Sure, "love as thou wilt"...but at the end, was it worth it? Only Cassiel turns back, for a last look. Only Cassiel remains true to his oath, while breaking it just the same...for love. Is the object of our will, of our devotion, of our heart...is it worth our sacrifice, our fight, our suffering, our building, our quest for knowlege, the help we need to call on upon the way, our healing (sometimes healing hurts)?



    ....if there could be a way for one "side" to be what to achieve vs what to overcome...that might be good too---I'll need to look at the map of the spread a bit more




    Thanks for doing that, Thal!

    Quote Originally Posted by Raphaeline View Post
    I think that's an excellent suggestion, Thal. I suppose what we've done so far in this thread is to create two different spreads - one is a general "current state" spread and one addresses a specific problem or issue.
    And I really agree that questions weren't necessary, but I was trying to make the spread for non-Kushiel readers too. Namaah to me, is so much more than just love and devotion and sexuality. I mean, she is those things, but she is all of the Night Court combined, too. Or Kushiel, who is justice, but he is justice with love in mind, and all his devotees come to him willingly to be punished for what they have done against others or themselves. And they love him for the punishment, as he loves them.

    But for people who haven't read the books as many times as we have, I felt like there needed to be some guidance, yanno?
    “The world is big and I want to have a good look at it before it gets dark.” – John Muir

    Mostly art.

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    Re: The Eluine Cycle tarot spread

    Quote Originally Posted by volcaniclastic View Post
    I completely agree with you about switching Elua and Namaah. I was trying to stress Namaah's love of Elua, but what I should have stressed was her sacrifice for his love.
    I've been thinking it over some this evening, and I'm kind of meditating on Naamah and her sexual generosity. This has really got me wondering... did Naamah consider it a sacrifice? Did she consider it a gift for her patrons as well as Elua... and herself? A win-win-win?
    If Naamah considered offering herself sexually as a sacrifice (in the modern use of the word), wouldn't that imply some level of shame for doing it?

    Sorry, that's off topic. Just something I've been thinking about. It's been awhile since I read the books so it's time I pick them up again anyway! Maybe I'll gain some insight.

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    Re: The Eluine Cycle tarot spread

    Quote Originally Posted by Raphaeline View Post
    I've been thinking it over some this evening, and I'm kind of meditating on Naamah and her sexual generosity. This has really got me wondering... did Naamah consider it a sacrifice? Did she consider it a gift for her patrons as well as Elua... and herself? A win-win-win?
    If Naamah considered offering herself sexually as a sacrifice (in the modern use of the word), wouldn't that imply some level of shame for doing it?

    Sorry, that's off topic. Just something I've been thinking about. It's been awhile since I read the books so it's time I pick them up again anyway! Maybe I'll gain some insight.
    No, you know what, you bring up a good point. But I think if it was solely self-sacrifice, she did it out of love for Elua, and therefore, I see no placement for shame, because she did everything she did with love in her heart.

    But, knowing Namaah, what is more likely is the other scenario you gave: She helped Elua, She pleasured her patrons, and She herself received pleasure in return. But I could see it either way. We know Namaah more through her devotees than we do of her, herself, and depending on the House, I can see both scenarios being a possibility.

    Either way, I don't think there could have been shame, unless a patron had forced her at some point. But even then, it's still more blasphemy and outrage, than shame.
    “The world is big and I want to have a good look at it before it gets dark.” – John Muir

    Mostly art.

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    Re: The Eluine Cycle tarot spread

    I imagine that she gave what she had for him, and her skill and her passion lay in sexual arts. It's just like any human might do for their gods or God - someone with a beautiful voice joins the choir, someone who loves children lends a hand in the church daycare during adult events, etc. Just because she found pleasure in it doesn't detract from it's meaning, which seems like a concept one might find in a Christian setting, and therefore would separate her from the One God even more. It really illustrates how much she changed for Elua.

    Maybe the card placement could be something about what the querent has to offer, what s/he can rely on for support, or might otherwise be related to what one is passionate about.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quick note: slightly unsettling for the answer to "Where must I travel? What will guide me?" to be the Devil card.

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    sea witch thalassa's Avatar
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    Re: The Eluine Cycle tarot spread

    Maybe the significance of Namaah should be: What can/should I give?
    Last edited by thalassa; 01 Jun 2013 at 03:10.
    “You have never answered but you did not need to. If I stand at the ocean I can hear you with your thousand voices. Sometimes you shout, hilarious laughter that taunts all questions. Other nights you are silent as death, a mirror in which the stars show themselves. Then I think you want to tell me something, but you never do. Of course I know I have written letters to no-one. But what if I find a trident tomorrow?" ~~Letters to Poseidon, Cees Nooteboom

    “We still carry this primal relationship to the Earth within our consciousness, even if we have long forgotten it. It is a primal recognition of the wonder, beauty, and divine nature of the Earth. It is a felt reverence for all that exists. Once we bring this foundational quality into our consciousness, we will be able to respond to our present man-made crisis from a place of balance, in which our actions will be grounded in an attitude of respect for all of life. This is the nature of real sustainability.”
    ~~Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

    "We are the offspring of history, and must establish our own paths in this most diverse and interesting of conceivable universes--one indifferent to our suffering, and therefore offering us maximal freedom to thrive, or to fail, in our own chosen way."
    ~~Stephen Jay Gould, Wonderful Life: The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History

    "Humans are not rational creatures. Now, logic and rationality are very helpful tools, but there’s also a place for embracing our subjectivity and thinking symbolically. Sometimes what our so-called higher thinking can’t or won’t see, our older, more primitive intuition will." John Beckett

    Pagan Devotionals, because the wind and the rain is our Bible

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    bibliophibian volcaniclastic's Avatar
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    Re: The Eluine Cycle tarot spread

    Hmm.

    So I just did a spread of this, but without the questions attached, and without my own question. I basically just drew cards and asked what each of the gods required from me, wanted from me, or what I need from them. I think I should have used my other deck - I used the Rider Waite one, but I'm not very comfortable with it, so I'm a little confused about my reading. Either way, in the name of science, I've decided to post it.

    Mostly, I just wanted to try the spread and see what I felt needed changing.

    1. Elua: Two of Wands (riding a divide between two ideas which cannot intermix; overwhelming sadness despite outward glory)
    2: Namaah: Page of Cups (news, reflection and meditation, someone who will be of service to me)
    3. Camael: Four of Pentacles (sureness of possession, gifts, legacy, inheritance)
    4. Kushiel: Ten of Cups (contentment, repose of the heart) <---this is the one I don't understand the most. I will suffer X to gain this, or I will have to give this up?
    5. Anael: Eight of Wands, Reversed (jealousy, dispute, quarrels)
    6. Shemhazai: The Chariot (succorr, providence, war, triumph)
    7. Azza: Six of Wands (victor triumphing, bearing a great message)
    8. Eisheth: The High Priestess (secrets, future as yet untold, silence, tenacity)
    9. Cassiel: The Lovers (attraction, love, trials overcome)

    Some of them make sense, some of them don't. I think without the specific questions tied to it, it is probably better to ask only one or two gods at a time for their message, whereas, with the questions attached, it would work better as a full spread.

    I think.

    and here's a pretty picture, because I said so.

    photo (1).jpg
    “The world is big and I want to have a good look at it before it gets dark.” – John Muir

    Mostly art.

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