Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Tarot Numerology I: Year of the Lovers Card

I can't believe it's been more than 2 years since I last posted!! By now I've already finished my PhD and embarked on my teaching and publishing career. It's been such a long and insightful journey. When I first started my blog in 2009, I was in my 1st Year of PhD and it was my 'Justice' year in the tarot numerology (Year 11). For those who don't know, how you calculate your tarot year is much like how you would calculate your classic numerology year, that is, by adding your birth date and the year in question (eg: if someone was born on 1st of January, then you add 1 +1 + 2013 = 2015, then 2 + 0 + 1 + 5 = 8, and your tarot year is '8', meaning 'Strength'). The key difference between tarot numerology and classic numerology is that instead of ending at '9' and starting again at '1' to mark 9-year cycles, in tarot numerology, you retain the 2-digits instead of adding it all up to single digits. For instance, '10' would not be 1 + 0 = 1, but would be just '10', which is a 'Wheel of Fortune' year of new beginnings - same connotation as a Year 1 in classic numerology.

When I first began my PhD journey, I was in my 'Wheel of Fortune' year (Year 10), and very fittingly, I was embarking on a completely new vocation, in new surroundings, and meeting new people. The Wheel of Fortune also has very auspicious connotations, which is true, considering that those were very vivid and eventful years of my life - and obtaining the PhD itself is life-changing in every respect, and opened up a whole new world of opportunities for me. The years that followed were 'Justice' (11), 'Hanged Man' (12), 'Death' (13), and 'Hierophant' (5). In my Justice year, I was busy socializing the entire year with my newly made friends and coursemates. All in all, it was a hugely social year and it was a time of partnerships and collaborations, and learning how to relate to other people and make adjustments in my own attitudes in the course of it. Looking back, I would say that I did learn alot about myself through relating with others, as I had never been in such a collective environment before, living in a college dorm for the first time in my life! It was a new experience for me, having to engage so closely with other people, whether in college, in my living environment, or in my faculty where I went to work everyday (remember the infamous 'attic'?!) I had to totally fine-tune my previous loner existence.....and I had to learn to make compromises and accommodate other people's needs and to be more easygoing and less formidable or fastidious (classic Virgo defects). I had a few falling outs with friends as I was learning my lessons, but I'm grateful that our friendship survived and we've managed to become lifelong friends after we've all graduated.

In the year that followed, which was my Hanged Man year (12), I turned completely within and started to delve really seriously into spiritual phenomena, such as tarot, angel cards, meditation, and books on past life regression. It was a hugely spiritual year with long-lasting effects, as I could still call upon the knowledge I acquired back then whenever I felt lost and needed some guidance from Above. In my Death year (13), I was finishing up my PhD, so it definitely signaled an ending of my student life, and to the years of research on my thesis. I remember it wasn't particularly painful as all Death years suggested, because it was a natural progression that I was to finish, and I welcomed the prospect immensely. However, it was a stressful and emotionally high-strung year precisely because I was rushing to finish. I was glad that I had the preparation from the year before, and that I could utilize my spiritual tools to help me get through that stressful period. Finally, last year I began a new chapter of my life in my Hierophant year (5). You might ask why it came back to 5 instead of 14, following the year 13. It just so happened that 5 appeared when adding up 2012 to my birthdate; this suggested that I was not yet ready to embark on a Temperance year (14) yet, and had to begin again at 5 and learn the lessons of the Hierophant. But in my next cycle in 2020, I will have a chance to embark on a Year 14 and learn the lessons of Temperance. Meanwhile, my last Hierophant year (5) was really all about learning and teaching and adapting to established systems and traditional structures. Upon graduation, I had joined a university as a teaching staff, and was a member of a most established institution if there ever was one. In that same year, I also found myself being quite conventional in all other areas of my life.....and yet I was to rebel against all of these in my Lovers year.

I already felt the inklings of the Lovers year (6) towards the middle of December 2012. If Hierophant year is about established thoughts and taken for granted assumptions about what is right and what is wrong, then Lovers year is about asking yourself if you genuinely identify with these ongoing conventions on a soul level, and if you're denying yourself the chance to choose differently than everyone else. I had always thought that I was 'conventional' in a lot of ways, and that my life was going to follow a very 'conventional' trajectory. My idea was that I was going to have a stable career that brought me a decent living and good social status. Being a college professor was definitely going to get me there. In the area of personal life, I envisioned myself marrying someone who was a few years older, had a promising and stable career, and a good-natured and reliable temperament. In other words, someone who was quite 'conventional' in every way. A lot of my friends are living that type of life, shouldn't I be aspiring towards the same? My parents would certainly like that, as they too lead very 'conventional' lives. I made a promise to my parents - and mostly to myself, fair enough - last year that I'd live my life that way, that I'd choose the most stable path - in life and love. But into my Lovers year, I was jerked out of my comfort zone, and I suddenly realized how unconventional my dreams and aspirations really were! For instance, my PhD topic itself on 'leftover' women in China's marriage market was totally controversial - nothing boring and generic there. The fact that I composed an article in a scholarly journal on such an un-scholarly and popular topic was another tell-tale sign. On top of that, I made a video abstract for my paper which had skits edited into it, which was a complete breakthrough as it rendered previously serious journal article abstracts entertaining for the very first time. Surely there is nothing conventional about any of these actions. This certainly warrants my being with someone who also wasn't 'conventional' in that sense; someone who had big, bold and far-reaching dreams, and wasn't afraid to pursue them. Someone who - I discovered in retrospect - was always one step ahead, and tried to tell me so time and time again, but of course, I had lacked the vision and experience to understand back then. But with the initiation into the Lovers year, it all becomes clear to me, as I gradually and irrevocably shed all of my previous inhibitions and become imbued with unprecedented courage and determination to choose according to my heart's true desire.

I owe it to my bold, audacious, and inspirational girlfriends SH, AL, WK & KL who have remained true to themselves in spite of challenges and controversy, and had the guts to follow their hearts and their instincts steadfastly, which has eventually led them to be with their one True Love. 

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