Cards,  Tarot Spreads

Blooming into Prosperity by Grieving the Ancestors

This is a recent reading I did for myself using the Blooming into Prosperity spread. I was very lucky to be supported by a very good and intuitively on point friend in doing this reading, a friend who has a talent for seeing emotions. She was the one who saw that the main issue for me for what it was, deep sadness, and I was then able to feel that it was a deep ancestral grief.

The spread showed that the crux of my difficulties with opening to the growth and receptivity necessary for prosperity, was entirely based in ancestral fears. And my friend was able to see that I was holding these fears as a deep sadness, as grief. Alone, I would have continued to sit in the fear, to see and feel the fear, not knowing how to release it, I would not have seen that this fear was manifesting in me through, or as, grief. From this new understanding, I got a strong sense that by honouring, working with and perhaps ritually grieving my ancestors I could move on. As my ancestors would certainly want me to. This was a great lesson in the enormous benefits of working with others, bringing all our great talents to the healing table.

My Ancestry

IMG_5893.JPGThe relevant ancestry for this reading are on my mothers side. There are other issues on my father’s side but this was clearly relating to the maternal line. We are Jews of Romanian origin on my mothers side. Her parents both escaped the Holocaust as teenagers, making their way to Israel without their families. My grandmother escaped after the Nazi’s had already occupied Romania and had some very near misses and experienced violence at the hands of Nazi soldiers, but was able to escape.


For both of them, they escaped while their families were sent to ghettoes and camps without them. In our family we are lucky that the majority survived, they were not sent to extermination camps. This has led to my dismissal of my family’s trauma as ‘less than’ that of others. But what I am learning more and more is that no trauma is ‘less than’ it is all trauma and the most important thing for healing is to see it for what it is to you, not to dismiss it as ‘less than’ anyone else’s, and thereby not acknowledge it.

As well as the traumas of being uprooted and existing in great fear and deprivation, my family went through the traumas of being forcibly separated, the surviving family members did not all find each other again for many years. We have many message sent through the red cross in our family archives asking for any news of lost brothers, sisters, sons, daughters, and on. Both my grandmother and grandfather’s families had experienced persecution for many generations prior to this. One great-great granIMG_5892.JPGdmother was shot on her doorstep for not giving a passing Austro-Hungarian soldier food on the sabbath as it was against her religious la

These and the stories of the Jews in general were the stories I grew up with and carry genetically. They mainly seem to present as fears of exposure: if I am seen, if I draw attention to myself, especially my true self,I and my family will be harmed, will suffer,

IMG_5894.JPGwill be killed. I have been uncovering their effects on me, and working towards healing, for some time. But this reading has really helped me to clarify how to move forward and release, and reassured me that once I have released my grief I have a very solid foundation for prosperity that I have built in this lifetime.

The Reading


  1. Feelings around growth – The Fool Rx:IMG_5762

My eyes were immediately drawn to the symbols which appear on The Fool in this deck. I saw them as symbols and amulets of protection. It was clear that I feel fear and hesitation around growth and in need of external and symbolic protections in order to take first steps towards growth.





2. Feelings around receptivity – Strength Rx:

IMG_5763.jpgFeeling a lack of strength and courage in relation to receptivity. The main thing I noticed in the image on the card was the need for protection again, I also felt confused and unsure. It showed a feeling that I need to be strong enough to protect what I receive. My feeling was that I didn’t have the strength to do that. I didn’t want the pearls in the image because I felt I didn’t have the strength to protect them, I didn’t want to spend my time and energy protecting them.




3. Feelings around creativity – Queen of Cups:

IMG_5766.jpgThis is an area in which I’ve made enormous shifts in the last few years, and it was very heartening to see these shifts clearly reflected in this spread. I felt strong, determined and connected looking at this image. She represents a feeling of love and safety in creating and expressing my true self.





4. Feeling to release and bloom! – The Chariot:

image1As this is the feeling to release, what is getting in the way, I tend to focus on reading the reverse meaning in this position. But as always, I advise feeling this out for yourselves in your own readings, whatever resonates is right! For me, the Chariot here read as a feeling of lack of control, of stalling, stagnation, a feeling of being unable to act. From the first two cards it was clear that I felt I needed protection, that if I couldn’t protect myself in my growth, and if I couldn’t protect what I received, then I couldn’t act to grow or receive. I was stuck, my will was stalled by feelings of lack of protection, feelings of a need for protection. All I could see in the image were the eyes of the wolves, waiting to attack. This was the card my friend looked at and where I could only see fear she saw deep sadness





5. Internal foundations around growth – King of Disks:

image2This again was heartening, my internal foundations, what I have learnt and built in my lifetime, are absolutely in alignment with what I believe to be the best way to grow – listen to your desires, act on them, don’t hold back! My feeling of a need for protection, a feeling that it was not safe to grow, was causing me to hesitate in following my own blueprint for growth. When i looked at this card in this spread I felt like that’s all very nice but not possible for me. It was almost a feeling of yeah well, you would say that coming from your position of privilege! But in reality I am, and have grown up in a position of enormous privilege both from a global perspective, and particularly in comparison to even the conditions my mother grew up in, let alone the generations before her.



6. Internal foundations around receptivity – 10 of Disks:

IMG_5771My internal foundations around receptivity also turned out to be really nice and in alignment with my conscious beliefs. This card is about the understanding of universal balance, of knowing how to sit in the divine balance of the universe. For me that felt like an awesome card in this position in terms of its meaning. But when I looked at it all I could see was the horse. All I could see was how hard it was for the horse to carry its rider and all his balancing pentacles. Coming back again to the feeling of not being strong enough to protect or carry what I clearly had the internal foundation to receive. Interestingly, when I have read with this spread for others the foundations usually corresponded to the current feelings, acting as explanations of their origins or sources in the querent’s own integral understanding. For my growth and receptivity I appear to have great internal foundations that are being blocked by something else, by this ancestral fear/sadness.



7. Internal foundations around creativity – 9 of Swords:

IMG_5774.jpgIn the Mary El Tarot the 9 of Swords has a very different meaning to the traditional meaning of this card. I like to read with a combination of my own, or the querent’s, emotional and visual response to the card itself combined with the meanings intended for cards by their creators. When I looked at this card i felt powerful and triumphant, I felt a solid sense of calm. The card meaning is about long awaited reunion and being provided with safe passage. I have reunited myself with my creativity after pretty much a lifetime of separation. This is now my vehicle for safe passage through the storms of life. Here the connection between my internal foundation and current feeling is the more common way around. The internal foundation clearly providing the source for the current feeling of a safe space for creation.



8. Foundation of safety to bloom – Ace of Swords:

IMG_5775.jpgThis felt like such a clear push to clear out this old stuff that is clearly not mine. I am being given the gift of clear vision of the issue through this spread, now I must act on it!





9. Creativity bloom – 4 of Swords (In):

IMG_5780In this part of the spread – the blooms – I do not read reversals, but rather see the energies of the cards as either going in to me or the querent, or out into the world. these can be sen as the actions to take. For me this felt like my creativity could utilise and delve into the vapours of my old fears, sadness, grief and germinate new life to feed me from it. At the moment I’m even seeing that these feelings of fear/sadness coming to the surface created a bit of a creative fog from which, although it is hard, I feel I will emerge with new life.




10. Receptivity bloom – The Magician (In):

IMG_5783.jpgI need to get visioning! Focus on envisioning what I want from my internal foundations, having a strong vision will be powerful and help me to overcome my feelings of lack of strength, i will see that these feelings are not mine once I vision and manifest what I desire to receive.




11. Growth bloom – 4 of Disks (In):

IMG_5786I sometimes hide in disorder, in not taking care of myself materially, of my environment, my body, my clothing, etc. I have known for a long time that this is a means of protecting, shielding myself from a world that I feel drains me. Here the cards are again saying, lovely, all this shielding comes from fears/sadness that are not yours. Work from the outside in, take care of yourself and your home and growth will follow.






How we summarised this spread fro me was as follows –  use this shit (foundations) to do this shit (blooms) to clear this shit (current feelings). Now all this is obviously easier said than done when you’re carrying a bunch of stuff that makes you fear for your and your loved ones lives in a great many highly innocuous situations. I’m giving it a good go by myself and the awareness of the situation is certainly helping. But going back to what I said at the beginning about the enormous value of community in this work, I have also used this as an impetus to seek out a Jewish Ancestral healing expert. I’m off to a day long workshop in a few weeks and will report back afterwards on how it went!


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