Good morning and Welcome! to the Scales of Ma’at 2-card daily reading for 23-Oct-2015: the 8 of Pentacles and XV the Devil, representing respectively my heart and the Feather of Truth. (Today’s deck is the absolutely wonderful and unique *The Golden Age of Hollywood Tarot* by Lorelei Douglas. If you saw the film, you’ll remember the premise of “Death Becomes Her” is that Isabella Rossellini sells you the Potion of Eternal Youth but in exchange you must arrange to disappear from the stage (of life.) I am convinced all the old Hollywood stars had enough cash to opt in, all moved to a retirement community outside of Perth, Australia, and Lorelei knows them all. A fun and inspired deck. Wonderfully apt, well thought out. It’s a good deck. And FULL of suggestions for a Hallowe’en costume!) “Ma! Ma-a-a-a! The crop’s in, Ma!” Humphrey and Katharine give us our definition of completed work and master craftsmanship winning through at the end in this 8 of Pentacles, my Heart card for today. More importantly, let’s take a quick look at the bones to find out where my heart is at. Prudence is where this card is at, and it’s saying to my Heart, BE prudent (you have a tendency to be Imprudent, my man.) He’s in Hod on the Tree of Life, arriving through the Element Earth. In Astrology, he’s the Sun in the 1st decan of Virgo. New beginnings based on logic, time & consideration are indicated. It’s a simple card, really, with Drive being consideration & prudence; my Light is the realization of coherences & the ability to wait for the right moment. This is ALL good. It sounds like get-your-shit-together-time in the Blessed Fields where I would like to dally. And yes, I need to do exactly that; with the destructions of the eidolons of my old self, and “the freeing of the slaves” there should be nothing barring my way to progression in practicing, at a high level, the work necessary for my eventual (fingers crossed) Enlightenment, and reunion with the Ain Soph. (Well, if you are going to aspire, you might as well aspire BIG, right?) So MUCH is in place now – I have worked like a fuckin’ field-hand – for over 60 years getting this puzzle put back together. I absolutely demand of myself that we finish the journey giving 110%, for whatever time is left to me; I’m counting on the Lord of Light and Darkness to keep his word and part of the deal. “I work; We join.” We shook hands on it, it’s a done deal. Funnily enough, the Feather of Truth today is XV the Devil. I’ve known a few Mrs. Robinsons over the years, and yes, they ARE ALL like that; bitter, twisted, highly intelligent & mortally dangerous. We forget that we live with lionesses; they want it that way, too. They are intelligent; they “doublethink” as easily as they breathe; they are the hunters, the providers and the mothers of our race. We have a thousand clichés for it: “What a woman wants, a woman gets,” “When a woman takes aim at another woman, she aims to kill,” “Only women understand women, and they detest each other.” On and on. What is behind all of that is an acknowledgement that the secret masters of the race, the guarantors of our future, are, in fact, mistresses: Woman GUARANTEES Man. Woman, however, is necessarily more preoccupied with survival in the physical, leaving man free to float on the lazy, mystical currents of metaphysical reflection. Not that she isn’t capable of it! far from it! but, of necessity, SHE has to assure we have a future before she starts refining it for herself. Men are far more selfish. That is what makes it so easy to see Woman as the Devil – the need to conquer the physical and hold sway over it. “The Devil Wears Prada.” (A wonderful, revealing, story that Meryl Streep tells on herself is when she took her daughters to see that film. Her daughters are adult, now, with the youngest around 17 or so. At the end of the film, with deadpan delivery, they turned to her and said, “So, Mother, you just played yourself.”) I LOVE the Material. I luxuriate in silks and satin, I like jewels & precious stones, glittering palaces and fantasy celebrations to celebrate anything at all. I’m that kind of guy. But I learned, LONG AGO, not to be enslaved. I have Walked Away 3X times in my life; by that, I mean, after considered reflection, going home and packing a suitcase, or two (2) MAXIMUM, then going to your favorite watering-hole or social gathering-with-friends place, plop your keys down saying, “I’m outta here, it’s been real! Ciao!” and walking out the door to catch the waiting taxi for the airport. At the airport, I would just choose the 1st flight out – to freedom. Perhaps priceless shit was left behind; perhaps souvenirs or memories; it’s gone. There is you, your freedom, and enough clothing to fend off the elements until you find your next base of operations. Leaving It All Behind. It never gets easier, it is always scarier than shit. My last time, and probably THE last time, was 2003, I was 51 and made a BIG jump – the U.S.A. to France, permanently (a permanent as anything ever is.) I work, and have worked, HARD to not be enslaved by my own taste for decadence and luxury, libertinism and Let-My-Burning-Bridges-Light-My-Way! - style of living. I long ago passed through my I-incarnate-the-Devil phase, freed myself from the chains (and no, I’m not under delusion or illusion) of placing value in illusions and wills-o’-the-wisp. No, I don’t live like a monk in Plato’s cave, but that would be rather ostentatious, wouldn’t it? Ha! I live a comfortable life, and I am AWARE of what it is made. So today, I think XV is simply a reminder that part of my 8 of Pents working the Path today is to keep in mind the values of non-attachment to illusion, to not “fall prey to the Devil.” I am, of course, free to do as I choose.