Along with creating a Word of the Year, one of my annual traditions for New Year’s Day is to discover my Year Card, and then study it to determine what lessons it has to teach me, and what I can expect to focus on for the next twelve months.
As I did my calculations, I discovered something interesting – I am entering a new cycle this year.
To explain this, it is important to understand that finding one’s Year Card requires the use of numerology, coupled with an understanding of the Tarot. Throughout your life, you will discover that your year cards will follow a pattern – you will have cycles where your cards follow sequential order. There will be a series of consecutive cards such as starting with #10 and then moving on through the Major Arcana cards of #11, #12, #13, #14, etc. for ten years until you begin a new cycle. The year of your new cycle will always end in the same number.
To use myself as an example:
I was born on October 25, 1958. Using numerology, I discover that my personal number is 22. This correlates with the card of The Fool in the Major Arcana, which is considered the 22nd card in the deck. In 1959 my numbers added up to 23, which then had to be reduced to the single digit 5. Thus my card for 1959 was The Hierophant. I then maintained a pattern for the next five years, moving thru the Major Arcana cards of Lovers, Chariot, Strength, Hermit, and Wheel of Fortune…until 1965 when I began a new cycle which started with the #2 card – The High Priestess. (Interesting side note: this the only year in my lifetime that I would ever have the High Priestess. One can only have the High Priestess once in a lifetime, and many will not have her at all. In fact, individuals born after 1997 will never achieve the High Priestess as their year card.) Beginning in 1965 I started my ten year cycle of sequential cards going from #2 The High Priestess to #11 Justice. Then in 1975 I began yet another cycle, which began with the #3 card of The Empress and continued for the next nine years, ending in 1984 with the #12 card of The Hanged Man. Then in 1985 I started yet another new cycle, which again spanned for ten years.
So my cycles go for ten years, starting in years ending with a 5 and continuing to years ending with a 4.
This is true for all individuals. While the first sequential cycle after our birth may vary in years depending on our birthdate, by the time one reaches the age of 20, a pattern should be clear, by which one can then track those ten-year cycles.
I like what Crossroads reader Alex had to say about those cycles:
Out of curiosity, I also put in a little time with a calculator and noticed a pattern throughout the years of my life…the cards going in sequential order for ten years, then reverting back to a card closer to the beginning of the Major Arcana before repeating the pattern (sequential order until the next eleventh year before reverting back to a card closer to the beginning of the Major Arcana…but one card further along than the last revert). It almost seems as if every ten years we (in theory, at least!) move along one step farther along The Fool’s Journey to retrace those steps we haven’t quite learned from…or could learn more from.
I think this is an excellent way of describing it. The tarot – and in particular the Major Arcana – is all about The Fool’s Journey. The Year Cards are our own personal experience with that journey. And yes, oftentimes we do need to repeat aspects of the journey in order to complete the lessons we haven’t quite finished learning from.
I’m now beginning my sixth ten-year cycle. I’m thankful for the cycles I have completed, the lessons learned from such cycles, and I look forward to continuing them and discovering so much more – about myself, about life, and about the world around me.
2015 brings me to a new cycle that begins with the #7 card: 2015 + 10 + 25 = 2050 = 2 + 0 + 5 + 0 = 7. The seventh trump of the Major Arcana is The Chariot. This is a card of powerful will. It speaks of victory, of overcoming obstacles and accomplishing objectives. It is a card of mastery and control, of mind over matter, the personality in charge of the world around it. It is a card of success.
I’ve been studying and working with the Tarot for 25+ years. Over those years I have collected a number of tarot decks – many of which I since given away, maintaining a basic collection consisting only of those decks I feel compelled to keep. Most of these are decks that I actually do work with, but like many tarot scholars I do have a few that I maintain more for their artistic quality than for their actual functionality. I find the images in these decks to be appealing. Below is a collection of such images of The Chariot, derived from a variety of decks:
Tarot of the Sidhe
(to be published in the near future)
Sirian Starseed Tarot
Tarot of Transformation
In my next post I will delve deeper into the various interpretations of the Chariot card, and how I apply such interpretations to my own life and what I see happening in 2015. This will be our chance to get up close and personal with the seventh card of the Major Arcana, and gain a greater understanding of how to incorporate the lessons of this card and the Fool’s Journey to our daily activities, and our connections to the world around us, and the Divine Spirit that guides us.
Stay tuned…and Happy New Year.