Living, Dying & Dieting

The large mirror she gazes into forms the trompe l’oeil of the skull while her two reflections are the eye sockets. A row of bottles of this and that range at the base of the mirror forming the teeth. A cloth drapes from the vanity to create the chin. A chilling image of beauty facing real self in the mirror.

I love to visit other blogs of others who study the Tarot. I learn so much from what they share. Recently, I visited Chloe of Inner Whispers. She had the most amazing post up. The subject was about dieting. I urge you to read her post (her whole blog actually). I can’t reiterate what she said so well.

From that post, she developed some questions. She didn’t name this spread. So I’m calling it:

Chloe’s Two Of Swords Dieting Conflict Spread (yeah, I know. Too long. Suggestions?)

What are the benefits of being slimmer?
What are the disadvantages of being slimmer?
What are the benefits of being heavier?
What are the disadvantages of being heavier?

I have also added: what is my key learning here?

  1. What are the benefits of being slimmer? Memento Mori
  2. What are the disadvantages of being slimmer? 2 of Cups
  3. What are the benefits of being heavier? Ace of Pentacles
  4. What are the disadvantages of being heavier? King of cups
  5. What is my key learning here? High priestess
Click for much larger image.

Okay. The first card is a bonus card with no meaning given. When I first looked at it, I thought it was Death. It’s not. It looks like a skull until you pay attention. I didn’t pay attention until I was moving the cards around to see how they played with one another. I do that with a spread looking for similarities of symbols or color.

Momento Mori translated means “Remember you will die.” (Remember your mortality”, “Remember you must die” are two other intepretations.) Rather a dark but definitive answer to what are the benefits. I run a much larger health risk by remaining overweight. In this card a woman sits at a vanity. The large mirror she gazes into forms the trompe l’oeil of the skull while her two reflections are the eye sockets. A row of bottles of this and that range at the base of the mirror forming the teeth. A cloth drapes from the vanity to create the chin. A chilling image of beauty facing real self in the mirror.

The shiver that chased up my spine! When I am thinking about my size, I must think about the long-term benefits. I’ll be fifty next March. Time to stop messing around, y’all.

Card 2 is the disadvantage. The Two of Cups shows a young woman a bench. A full moon highlights two bats swooping overhead. A rather pale gentleman perches on the arn of the stone bench. He’s got a great widow’s peak. I have one that my father passed down to me. From the LWB, the last line leaps out at me. “Getting close to someone” Do I fear that if I lose weight I might begin a relationship? I’ve often thought that I would not trust someone who wanted to date me when I was slimmer as opposed to heavy. So that’s very problematic. I do not want to lose weight in order to find a partner. The Two of Cups is the mini-lovers to me. I’m a bit surprised to see this so clearly laid out for me.

Card three is the benefits of remaining heavier. The Ace of Pentacles is a skull and crossbones weather vane atop a cupola. You can’t tell what the cupola rests on. The moon is just behind the skull creating a luminious halo of light. I’ve always seen the Ace of Pentacles as the seed energy of community. Do I think I will have a place in my community as long as I’m heavier? I do identify with other women built like me. There’s a comfort to being this size because in my group no one puts you down for weight. This is about the promise of prosperity in the future. Do I stay fat because I think one day it will just magically disappear? Hmmm…

Card four is the disadvantage of staying heavier. The King of Cups shows a woman sitting in a stone window with no glass. A very scary gnomelike creature looks up at her. He is a rather typical looking Bela Lugosi-style vampire with a bald head, bat-like pointed ears and what seems to be a maroon smoking jacket. This is a very strange King of Cups as he is so much shorter than she is. Will I not find my own King of Cups if I stay heavy. Or maybe he is watching me and waiting? From the LWB, I see “repressed creativity” along with a longing to do something “eccentric or outrageous”. Do I think I won’t be able to be that avant garde self I know is within?

The final card is the High Priestess. This is the key learning here. From a business world, I’d call this the takeaway card. Interestingly, she is the brightest of the five cards. The sky behind her is that of dawn or twilight. My inclination is that it is dawn. She olds a red scepter or maybe it is a vessel. It seems to be filled with blood. The two pillars of B and J are represented by two gravestones or monument markers. The left one is in the shadows while the right one is highlighted by the sun. She is wrapped in rich material, but there is a pensive look on her face. Her hands are gloved.

This is about me doing it my way. The minute I let others get involved in what and how I should eat, I get rebellious. I loathe food police when they apply their religion to my habits. Yes, even when I ask for help, I still resent it. 🙂 This card tells me that I know the secrets to how to lose weight. I have to make the choices between the two paths. I can look at this spread and easily see that I need to step up to the plate.

Err, that may be a fairly non-useful metaphor, huh.

Overall, a very intriguing spread that has given me things to think about. I will also look more into this new deck of mine. I am a huge fan of the folks at Magic Realist Press. I own several of their decks. Still want my own copy of the Victorian Romantic. le sigh. Some day, my deck will come…lalalalalala. 🙂

Let me know what you think of this spread. I welcome your insights but may grouse if you try to give me dieting tips. You’ve been warned.

5 thoughts on “Living, Dying & Dieting”

  1. Hi Arwen,

    Wow, what a powerful reading! As you say, plenty of food for thought there. One other thing that popped into my mind for the King of Cups is that perhaps a disadvantage of being heavier is that you attract attention you don’t want. People who see you as a nurturing, jolly woman because of your size, and don’t appreciate your other more creative aspects, but just expect you to feed them (literally or metaphorically)?

    As for a name for the spread, how about just the Weight Conflict Spread?

    Thanks for the link, and for reading!
    Chloe

  2. Ooh, P.S. I heard that Magic Realist were bringing out a Russian edition of the Victorian Romantic (also on my daydream list). They said it’d be available in November, but no news so far. Maybe they’ve had problems with the Russian printers?

  3. Russian edition is now being advertised on their website, released in small batches at different times. So, if you’re interested keep your eyes peeled!

  4. First, I shall say Chloe is a wonderful blogger, and I second the recommendation of reading her posts.

    Arwen, this was a truely wonderful spread and an amazing reading. I enjoyed reading it and witnessing your interpretations of the cards, which are quiet artistic themselves.

    Thanks for sharing,
    Cher

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