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XII. The Hanging Cat
 
Join Date: 30 Oct 2004
Location: Washington, DC
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XII. The Hanging Cat

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Hi, study group folks! I am so impressed and cheered by all our new studiers, and by all the helpfulness and encouragement going on. (All I can seem to get done is writing my exercises in my notebook and NOT getting them typed into the forums on time!) SO--Welcome and thanks to all. I look forward to all of your posts!

Here is my Step 13 -- Symbols

Manga Tarot 4 Wands

Symbol/word for autumn, red and yellow colors symbolize fruition, abundance, warmth, endings
Used for labeling each card with a season!
Literally: Our 25th wedding anniversary is coming up in October. It's always our favorite time of year.
Reminds me of going back to school and work with renewed energy. (Hmm, endings AND beginnings . . .)

Wands (bamboo poles) symbolize energy, fire, action, will, doing
Used for holidng up tents, plants, wedding canopy, also used for pole vaulting, fighting, walking stick, fence
Literally: It's spring, and my husband, the gardener, is staking up bushes every day!
Reminds me of Robin Hood and Little John's quarterstaffs (staves?) for fighting

Four symbolizes stability, mercy, fulness/expansion
Used for counting, quarters and quarter hours!
Literally: My husband collects quarters and my boss records her time in quarter hours!
Reminds me that I'm (well) over 40 years old.

Pink symbolizes love, emotions, femininity, baby girl, sunrise
Used for baby gifts and girl's stuff, flowers, spring decor.
Literally: My yard is full of azaleas in all shades, mostly pink. My favorite azalea is pink, and it's variety is called "Dayspring."
Reminds me that maybe someday I'll have a granddaughter. (Currently have one 20-year-old son.)

Flower crown and lotuses on dress symbolize life, new life, spring, growth. Lotuses symbolize purity and spiritual growth.
Used for gifts of love, decoration, beauty, sometimes food, fruit trees, etc.
Literally: See above about my yard! Mother's Day is coming, so I should get some flowers for my mom.
Reminds me that I got flowers recently for Secretary's Day, and before that when I was in the hospital, and before that when my father passed away.

Hearts symbolize love, innocent love, gifts, acknowledgement of feelings (valentines)

Hands symbolize helping, work, applause, waving
Used for same.
Literally: The other day I fell and hurt the ring finger on my right hand. The pain I still feel when using it makes me realize I use my right hand for just about everything!
Reminds me of holding hands for reassurance.

Red hair symbolizes a tempermental person with strong emotions, strong passions, a showy person
Used for adornment.
Literally: I saw a TV ad for haircolor that doesn't look artificial. I am steadfastly against coloring hair, mostly for that reason.
Reminds me of an I Love Lucy episode in which people thought she colored her hair red.

Smiling symbolizes happiness, but also trying to please and trying to attract.
Used to show we're happy, for reassurance, encouragement, etc.
Literally: ?
Reminds me of smiling to encourage myself. Like whistling a happy tune.

Girl symbolizes femininity, innocence, sexuality, vulnerability, attraction
Used for ????
Literally: ?
Reminds me of wishes for second chances and things I could have done better in my youth.

Dancing symbolizes happiness, ritual and celebration, sexuality, self-expression
Used for self-expression and social interaction
Literally: ?
Reminds me of my son in Junior Cotillion. (All the eighth grade boys and girls in our neighborhood take classes in social deportment and dancing.)

Themes:

Femininity and all it means. Socially enforced ideas of innocence and vulnerability juxtaposed with allure and entrapment AND sensuality and sexuality. You must forgive me, I was steeped in mid-80s feminist concepts! Society has projected so much onto young women, both good and bad, including the innocence they want to see, the sensuality they desire, and the power of both to trap them. Shakespeare knew what women want before Freud asked! Their own sovereignity! Alot of these other ideas come from the outside and girls and women just soak it up automatically.

Nature. Often associated in society with women/femininity, it is both beautiful and dangerous.

Beginnings and endings. New life and old life. Living and dying. Obviously a major theme of tarot, but I didn't really recognize it in 4 Wands, until now!

Wow, I would hate for a Freudian to get hold of this! I seem to have some unresolved issues unrelated to my stated issues. No matter how old I get, I am still wondering just what kind of person I am. And what it means to be a woman, a woman who feels close to the natural world and her family. And what it means to be a middle-aged woman. Hmmm...
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