Green people are stumbling around New York City with beers hidden in brown paper bags. St. Patrick’s Day must be upon us . . . A million questions race through my mind. I wonder what this booze fest is all about anyway? What are the roots of St. Paddy’s? Will I accidentally step in pile of puke?
I called up my sensible Irish friend, Jillian Dougherty. Jillian grew up in Ireland. I listened to her soft Irish lilt as she said, “I’ll give ya the short version Sasha. Saint Patrick was a sheepherder. Whilst out with the sheep, he got to be very religious and spiritual. Probably all that time in nature. Becoming a devout Catholic in England, Patrick went back to Ireland and converted all the Pagans (who were living like the American Indians) to Christianity. Then, for good measure, banned all snakes in Ireland.” I suppose killing off all the snakes was meant to banish evil?
I asked Jillian what was behind the symbolism of the Shamrock, “Oh, the Shamrock is a three leaf clover – not a four leaf like many people think. It is an allegory for the Cross. The Father, Son and Holy Ghost.”
Wow! She mentioned the Shamrock as the Cross and I thought about the power of a triad and the number Three and how it all relates to Tarot. Father, Son Holy Ghost/Mother, Maiden, Crone/Mind, Body, Spirit/Three Pillars of the Tree of Life.
I teach my Tarot students that all Threes in Tarot suggest creativity. Three is the result, the offspring, of the Twos that have come before. The Empress, who represents complete and utter creativity, is numbered Three.
Think about a creative project you are or will be embarking on. The Shamrock Spread will tap into and examine your inner creative process.
1. Your conception of creative work (passive).
2. The actions you take (active).
3. The result of your creative efforts (the child, offspring).
4. A negative aspect you can expel, like St Patty did with the snakes. What hinders your creative process? What can you get rid of?
Take out all the Threes in your Tarot deck. What do they have in common? How are they different?
Notice the difference between the Three of Cups and the Three of Swords? Why do you think this is?
Notice the difference between the Three of Wands and the Three of Pentacles?
Why do you think these are so different?