The Journey So Far aka Then – Now Spread

(Title blatantly cribbed from Supernatural opening credits. I am beyond help.)

Wanting to take the The Journey Oracle for a spin, I had to come up with a suitably appropriate spread, hence – The Journey So Far:

9 …..8…..10
6 …..2 …..7
4 …..1 …..5

The Journey Oracle by Adrienne Trafford; Schiffer Publishing, 2011 [FULL]

The Journey Oracle by Adrienne Trafford; Schiffer Publishing, 2011 [FULL]

[Significator] The JourneyerSchiffer cover card
HA HA! I forgot to set the 2 extra cover cards aside before shuffling and look what happened. I had intended to move the significator through the spread, pairing it with each card and seeing how they related to each other – so much for that! I left it like this, because I think it was a message – maybe something to do with defining myself; writing my own story (the Schiffer logo is an inkwell and quill pen) – or maybe the deck just wanted to make it clear that it has my number.

[1] Where the Journey began – Patience
[2] Most recent way-station – The Adventurer
[3] Where the Journeyer finds themselves now – Rebirth

Well then. Obvious cards are obvious. “Rebirth” pretty much confirms what every other reading has been telling me (COPIOUS appearances of the Fool and Hanged Man, whichever card has the most appropriate imagery for the reading) and it really does feel like I’m suddenly stopped after what has been a marvelous adventure. It’s been quite the dramatic change of pace.

[4] What’s in the saddlebags (resources) – Eve
[5] Traveling companion – Mother Earth

How interesting – two specific women (rather than concepts), both earthy. Another thing recent readings have been telling me is that I need to bring more Earth into my “personal space” (I admit, it is the element I am most estranged from.) Eve and Mother Earth seem like two aspects of the same woman – aspects of myself?

Hmm, I wonder if the eggs in the nest could be those two aspects, waiting to come to light. Rebirth, right? (Maiden, Mother, Whore?)

[6] Forces aiding the Journeyer (+/ the Journey) – Talisman
[7] Forces hindering the Journeyer (+/ the Journey – The Champion

A talisman could be so many things! Something internal, an actual item (though I can’t imagine what, so probably not) or even a personal icon who serves as a touchstone of sorts. That is a grey area right now.

The Champion is a guardian and protector (according to the guidebook, of mother earth) – so how does a guardian force hinder a journey? And more importantly: why? I’m thinking that it must be something internal again, whether that is a type of fail-safe or an inner-child (etc.) situation. Drawing on a recent experience*, I obviously still have some serious work to do in certain areas, areas where I thought I had made progress, but must have merely repressed and locked up really, really well. Not dealing = not progressing.

[8] Most likely potential destination – Resilience
[9] Alternative destination A – Entangled
[10] Alternative destination B – Confined

Uhhhhh, I think there’s only one logical choice here, though opportunity for slippage lies on either side. At least it’s a (superficially) easy decision!

The “Resilience” destination visually reflects the idea of rebirth: on either side are girls – ie. my current form – whereas Resilience shows a tree that has been chopped down, but is sprouting fresh growth. Drawing further from themes earlier in the reading, a tree is a symbol of the Earth element (though I personally separate Wood out from Earth). If Earth represents both my resources and traveling companion, then it possibly has something to do with my roots, or rather, the place where I am rooted.

[11] Most direct route to the destination – The Puppet
[12] Most direct route to destination A – Changes
[13] Most direct route to destination B – Desire

The Puppet threw me. I thought, “Give up control?” but realised it could also mean “cutting the strings”. Making your own decisions is scary, but the experiences resulting from that will build resilience. Oh! Yes, cut the strings, because the exact opposite is true in the alternative destinations: A = entanglement in its own strings; B = confinement in the box (which I assume the Puppet sleeps in) as well as confinement to the (performance) stage ie. an act!

Just noticed that the Puppet holds a heart, with a hole in the top left like on the “Talisman” card. There is a string attached to the heart…

The other two cards were equally as head-scratch-inducing at first glance. “Changes” leading to entanglement (captivity)? Perhaps – in light of the Puppet and that the woman in “Changes” turns her back on it – fighting/ignoring the changes, or allowing an outside force to dictate the changes, ends in entanglement. “Desire” ending in confinement makes a bit more sense: don’t let your desires become your prison. There’s also an element of dreaminess to this card – getting stuck in daydreams and illusion.

When I designed this spread thought it would be innocuous enough for a deck that looks sweet and demure on the surface. Well it sure showed me. Much respect to The Journey Oracle if it can consistently give readings like this.

* I signed up for online courses on the Coursera website, the first of which was a 10-week examination of fantasy and science fiction literature. What do I prefer to read and what have I read most of and am I not rather good at essay writing? Cake walk in the park. Until I started watching the initial introduction video and within 10 minutes I was overcome with violent trembling, nausea and that all too familiar feeling of panic. The shaking lasted an hour… and then I unenrolled.

Guess somebody still has some unresolved trauma regarding tertiary education.


4 thoughts on “The Journey So Far aka Then – Now Spread

  1. hersixthcircle says:

    Look, I’m just letting you know that I haven’t even read this post yet because I’m still pretty much like choking over those gorgeous cards. I mean, CRAP.

    Is that the downside to illustrating one’s blog posts? Rendering your readers incoherent? I keep scrolling up and attempting to read, but O_O


    • submerina says:

      Eh. Results are results ;)

      At first glance, all the girls in the deck look very similar – because they are modelled on the artist’s daughters – but that is actually plus: it feels like the deck is telling a story about the same person ie. it’s easy to make the reading about _you_. All the little nods and obvious inspiration of well-known art also helps to draw you in and make the deck approachable and relatable.

      So you’re getting a copy? *wicked cackle*

      (I’m sorry?)


  2. D. D. Syrdal says:

    I have to confess I have the attention span of a fruit fly these days. It’s really hard for me to use spreads involving more than about 7 cards, tops. After that I become ADD. Still love these cards.


    • submerina says:

      I’m just coming out of a similar slump myself; I’m _really_ enjoying being able to read again. Doesn’t help if work is leaving you exhausted and unsatisfied at the end of the day :(


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