The Empress’ Feast
As the holidays and holy days approach, many of us gather with family and friends to share a holiday meal. Feasting has long been a ritual of celebration and thanksgiving. In this workshop we will work with the energy of The Empress and her court (the court cards) as well as courses in a feast. Sometimes our holiday feasts can be tense, with difficult family dynamics and rigid old patterns. If this sounds familiar you can use this spread as a blueprint to help you navigate your feasts more smoothly. The spread gives insight on how to stimulate conversation and connection.
These are suggestions, you can adapt the supplies to what you have on hand or would like to use.
- Tarot deck
- Journal or paper.
- Piece of paper in a different color
- Glue stick and pair of scissors
- Photos of family and friends
- Magazines with food images, tables, place settings, people etc
- Colored pencils, paint.
- Tarot images of The Empress and Court cards. You can print photocopies of the cards you pull or use a tarot deck that you no longer use for readings. You can also create your own tarot cards using collage, drawing or painting. Printed sheets of Tarot de St. Croix can be purchased here
The Empress in Tarot
The Empress represents the Great Mother. She is nurturing, creative, fertile and sensuous. The Empress represents abundance, harmony and growth. She manifests beauty and embodies life. The Empress rules with love, she takes care of others and provides sustenance.
Make sure you will be undisturbed.
Take a few deep breaths and ground yourself.
Go through your deck and pull out The Empress and all sixteen court cards: the Pages, Knights, Queens and Kings. In some decks you will find other names for the court cards such as Princesses for Pages, Elders for Queens or Kings.
Make an altar with The Empress card as the focus. Think of the four elements: air, fire, water, earth and find symbols to represent them. Light a candle, add a glass of water or wine, a crystal, flowers, fruits, nuts and anything of beauty. Make it abundant and beautiful. If you want to take a photo and print it, this may serve as a centerpiece for the feast.
Invoke The Empress to preside over the Feast by calling: “Empress I invite you in your splendor to provide what is most needed to sustain, give pleasure and inspire connection and love at this feast and with others”.
Look through your court cards and choose who will be at the table. The cards may represent actual people in your life or who you might like to invite to the feast. Place them around your altar.
Descriptions of Court cards here: http://lisadestcroix.blogspot.com/p/court_9.html
Shuffle the remaining cards in your deck and pull a card for each of the following questions.
Wine/Beverage: WHAT WILL MAKE CONNECTIONS FLOW?
First Course: WHAT SPARKS INTEREST?
Main Course: WHAT WILL BRING NOURISHMENT?
Dessert: WHAT WILL THE OUTCOME BE?
Place the cards around your altar and let the cards speak to you.
Make a table by centering and gluing an oblique rectangle onto your page. It can be blank paper or decorative paper.
Place a representation of The Empress at the head of the table.
Around the table glue images of your invited guests. This can be actual court cards, photos of your family and friends or found images from magazines that represent the court.
Look at the cards you picked for the tarot spread: beverage, the appetizer, main course and dessert. Meditate on the questions and what you “divined”. Let your intuition take over. Look through magazines with food images and if you see something that matches your intuition, cut and paste it onto the table. You do not necessarily have to use images of food, you can use whatever “sparks interest”, “helps connections”, “brings nourishment” or what you hope for “an outcome”. If you have small images of the tarot cards you can use them as I have. Be creative, have fun.
On your page add voice bubbles for each member of the court or write around the images. Imagine what they may say about the tarot card pulled for each course. How would they respond? You can write short succinct responses or longer ruminations. Try to imagine what your court might really say. Imagine yourself as the Empress and write your own responses and feelings. If the page is too crowded you an add a second page of dialogue.
Click this link to download a PDF of this workshop: The Empress
I would love to see your pages, if you feel brave please post them on our Facebook Tarot Visual Journaling Group
I hope that this workshop leads to insight about how you can embody the qualities of the Empress, as one who leads with love and generosity, and some food for thought about how to create an interesting feast.
Lisa de St. Croix