of shadow work
facing the darkness /
to live in the light
to live in the light
Peace & blessings! I just want to say right quick that I know less & less of us are commenting everyday &I'm a little late sometimes, but I KNOW we're in here. Our support of each other (& ourselves!) is a beautiful thing & I hope none of us are feeling any-type-of-way about not checking in or speaking up or anything. Shadow work is private, intense, triggering & happens according to divine timing, not necessarily a preset schedule (even if you committed bc Spirit be having other plans). This is my daily reminder that we please, please, please be gentle with ourselves. Huge hugs & leisurely backrubs to us all!
So, today we are going to talk about the Ace of Cups + the Ace of Pentacles which is a little overwhelming for me because two are so intertwined & connected that I'm not sure how to separate the parts to show you. It feels like pointing to a pile of mud & saying, here is the water & here is the earth. Impossible lol (but imma try).
First, definitions: All the Aces represent the root & infinite potential of their element, so the Ace of Cups is the infinite potential of water (the teardrop that becomes an ocean) & the Ace of Pentacles is the infinite potential of earth (the molehill that becomes a mountain). The common denominator of all emotion (water) is love & the common denominator of all growth (earth/in-formation) is time so if you put them together = love takes time. (But I'm getting ahead of myself)
Second, directions: Notice how the Ace of Cups is being handed off with the right hand & the Ace of Pentacles is being received with the left hand. This represents the give & take, the ebb & flow of life. Release the current (emotion), receive the tide (time).
Third, perspective: Notice how the water in the foreground of the Ace of Cups is a result of the waterfall from the heavenly cup. This represents how our emotions often rush in & then we dive deep (see the ocean in the distance?) To keep from drowning (again, deep af ocean ahead) as our feelings begin to overflow, we have to wade-in-lilies (wait-a-little) in the shallow end so we can see exactly what's in the water before we get in over our heads.
The dynamic is opposite (but related) to the Ace of Pentacles. See how in the foreground is the perfect little lawn & path (well laid plan), but there's a mountain through the mole-hole? This represents how, when we visualize too far ahead of ourselves, we run into mental pinnacles (mind mountains, i.e. creating problems that don't exist) that overwhelm our vision & zap our will to even take the first step. It's best to get out of our heads & remain in the moment (with the mole-men? idk lol) & allow ourselves to put one actual (not mental) foot in front of the other. In this way, instead of being stressed about potentials, we can be surprised & delighted by how the path realistically unfolds. (Bc there is a huge difference between knowing the path & walking the path)
See how they are intertwined...? In the Ace of Cups, it's best to resist the current (emotions) rushing in & remain at shore (where you're sure) & can carefully investigate the depths during the ebb & flow of tide (time). Otherwise you'll go too deep, too fast & drown. (Drunk in love...?) In the Ace of Pentacles you have to get out of your head & actually go with the flow/ current moment & follow your path, otherwise you'll get stagnated by the potential pinnacles in the distance & wade (wait) too long. (Let life pass me by...?)
When it comes to life, flow (follow). When it comes to love, wade (wait).
(Maaaannnnnn when I tell you I have had that ish backwards all my life lololol. & Just the fact that tomorrow's card is the Two of Cups (Venus in Cancer) & I have Venus in Cancer in my natal chart- I CANNOT with how the Most High trolls me, too funny...)
Anyway- I am endlessly fascinated by the linguistic connection between reality & water. Take the word "current," which describes the ebb & flow of waves; but also describes the right-now immediacy of "time";
& the word "time," was originally "tide," which is a measurement of water;
and the word "currency," which represents a unit of value that we exchange for "time."
So we give our time (tide) in order to receive currency (current);
So we spend our time (lives) trying to obtain water/ emotion (love).
But if we look at the cards, we see we have that concept backwards af because the Ace of Pentacles is being gifted (received) from the Most High's hand & the Ace of Cups is being poured out (released). So we have a limited amount of time (life/gift) but we have an infinite amount of love (overflowing current / emotion / currency).
So we spend our precious, gifted pentacles (time) to earn the love that we already have in abundance (current/ currently/ currency). There is always love because we exist in the current. It is always now (currently). There is nowhere else to go. Yet since we don't live forever, we only have a limited amount of time to spend in the current.
With this understanding, we should be spending our precious time enjoying every moment, since the current (love) lasts forever but we (time) do not last forever. But since we understand it backwards & mistakenly believe the current (love) is limited (will he still love me tomorrow?) & mistakenly believe we are eternal (I'll call her next week), we spend the gift of time paying (paining/ panging) for our current. In other words, hurting for love instead of loving for life.
& Then we rush through relationships (Ace of Cups) drowning ourselves in our current (love) believing we don't have time to wade (wait/waste). And it's true I said earlier that we shouldn't wait; that we should follow (flow) where the path leads. But there is a difference between flowing (following) & rushing (rushing in / diving ahead).
The difference is instead of rushing (which makes you tired/spent), we should put one foot in front of the other foot (which gives you a pace/peace/paid). Order our steps. The slower we move, the more we will come to appreciate the infinite beauty & possibility within each moment. If we pay attention (using our wonderful gift of time), then life will reveal this mysterious relationship between tide (time) & currency (rewards), which is slow, deliberate & long lasting, to better stand the test of time, quality time, rewarding time. This evolves into a lifelong (step by step) journey with us & our beloveds (& us AS our beloved), where the greedy minutes (mine, it's!) dissolve into shared hours (ours).
So since our ability to be patient (pay attention) means we can gift our beloveds what was bestowed unto us - time; then the highest act of self love is to gift ourselves time.
Don't rush (overflow) & don't worry (pinnacle).
Give ourselves time.
(Disclaimer: these are all original thoughts, please taste them but don't bite them, please)
Here's my Ace of Cups / Ace of Pentacles (Shadow) story:
I don't have a pretty bow to put on this, but these events/ stories just stand out to me. My stepmom was born & raised in Lynchburg, VA, which is a hella small town. She grew up in the backwoods in a cold shack with her parents, five siblings, & her dad's parents. She told me her dad & his dad were alcoholics & they would alternatively beat their wives & stop each other from beating their wives (depending on who was drunk & who was sober). She said her daddy would be about to get paid & promise his kids food, & then would go get drunk & spend up all the money & then come home to six hungry kids broke af. She said her mama & grandmama had to make miracles happen. She told me that she grew up in the damn sixties, so people were living all over the world with electricity & indoor toilets; there was no reason for us to be as poor as we were, except that my father didn't provide.
She said for years her father used to promise them that if they kids cleared the land, he would save the money & build them a better house with heat & indoor plumbing, closer to the main road, but he never did. Then when she was 14, he was hit & killed by a train while walking across the tracks. She said her mama used the insurance money to build them the house he'd talked about. In a way, he did give us what he promised, she told me.
& Then my stepmom got with my dad & he was abusive af & she hated her life with him. When I was little I asked her why she stayed (because Ray Charles could see she was miserable) & she said 1) I'm not independent like your mama, I don't make enough money to live on my own & 2) That's just how men are. But then suddenly, her job (Illinois Bell) was bought out by Ameritech, & since she had been there 20 years, they offered her early retirement & a fat pension in the buyout. She used that money to leave him.
Then she used her money to put my younger sister through medical school & when her pension was gone & she lost her job at Comcast for (accidentally) cussing on an open line, she was stressed af. She told me she was thinking about opening a daycare so she could work from home & I was like DO IT. She was like, but I don't know that many kids?? And I was like, the Lord will provide. Her daycare was open for 7 years & in that time, between me, my sister & my cousin, we birthed 8 babies & they all grew up at the daycare. It was such a precious time in our lives, being around each other & the siblings & the cousins & the popsicles & the holidays. I wish I had appreciated it more, tbh.
In March 2014 I interviewed my stepmom for this narrative project I was doing at the time called Marrow Women, & in her interview she said she felt she'd wasted her life on my father, & that she wished she'd chosen a man who would have loved her, because she deserved love. I told her there was still time & she was still fine. She was like nawl, I'm fat, I wasted my life, I want a do-over.
Then in June 2014 she started losing a ton of weight unexpectedly & at first she was happy about it bc she'd wanted to drop some pounds forever but then she was alarmed bc it didn't stop. She went to the doctor & they diagnosed her with Stage 4 pancreatic cancer. She died six months later, in December. The last year or so before she died, she'd been slowly renovating her house, & the last thing to be done was stripping up all the carpet & replacing it with hardwood floors. The dude was doing the job slowly because he was a family friend & let her pay him slowly, on time. Two weeks before she died, she was bugging me about paying my $25 child care co-pay (she wouldn't acknowledge hospice or anything & worked until she literally couldn't work anymore); I remember she was also stressing out about the money to pay the contractor a $200 installment so he could do some work on the floors, & my sister was like, how much to just FINISH & dude said $2,000, & my sister just wrote him a check and the floors were finished that same week.
It just always struck me that my stepmom worried about money her whole life & was always so busy or fussy about one thing or another. She was my favorite person with her mean ass & I loved her so much & she was just always like whatever, where is my money/why are you late/why are you loud or some other complaint lol. She just would not let folks love on her- or maybe we just didn't love her how she wanted to be loved, idk. But it's crazy to me that in her very last days, she was surrounded by her family but was worried about paying for them damn floors.
Idk where I'm going this but I know I wish I had more time with her. Quality time.
(But ain't it something when you look back & realize it was all quality time?)
What's y'alls Ace of Pentacles and/or Ace of Cups?
all of us.