Taroting Depression with The Lovers

The Lovers Tarot Card from the Dark Wood Tarot by Sasha Graham and Abigail Larsen

The Lovers speak to us of partnerships, relationships and balance. It brings the promise of romantic relationships and successful duos. It’s the card of attraction.

Depression is not experienced alone, even though it feels like it. Our loved ones go through their own special time of hell, just as we do. And although we can feel guilt for what we feel we’re doing to our families and friends, we don’t know their experience any more than they know ours.

Often, we’ll isolate ourselves from our loved ones, either in fear of being rejected, or simply not having enough energy to interact with others. Sometimes this is absolutely necessary for our own healing and to be able to maintain relationships long-term.

But, we humans are not meant to be solo creatures, and nowadays even if you don’t like to socialize you can still interact with people online. This is often a more manageable approach for people with anxiety. Yes, it does carry the risk of trolls and negative interactions but it can also be a lifesaver for some.

I’m particularly fond of the Lovers in the above depiction as I believe it reminds us that pairings, and other relationships, can be made of many different molds. 

There are some people who simply enjoy their own company, and there is nothing wrong with that. But when you’re deliberately avoiding people because the demon Depression has hold of you, there’s a lot you’re missing out on.

Depression has already robbed you of so much.

Taking a journey with The Lovers can remind you of the joy that can be found in relationships. 

And yes, that includes relationships with pets. 

Dog and cat friends

Sit, or lie down comfortably and take a few moments to wriggle about and settle yourself. 

Begin with some box breathing. Make sure that when you breathe in, it’s the deepest breath you can manage.

Now, breathe in for a count of four, hold  for a count of four, release for a count of four, hold for a count of four.

Once more, breathe in for a count of four, hold for a count of four, release for a count of four, and hold for a count of four.

One more time, breathe in for a count of four, hold for a count of four, release for a count of four, and hold for a count of four.

Continue to breathe deeply as you imagine yourself standing at the bottom of a huge marble staircase. You’re dressed to attend a ball and you feel as fabulous as you look.

You start to climb the stairs, slowly and carefully, and with each step you breathe just a little bit slower and you relax just a little bit deeper. Although you’re excited about attending the ball, you want to be as calm as you possibly can.

As you take a few more steps you can see the Lovers standing at the top of the stairs, waiting to welcome you. You continue to climb towards them, feeling just a little more relaxed.

A few more steps and you reach the top where the Lovers open their arms to envelop you in a huge hug. Stay with this embrace for as long as you need to, to feel completely relaxed and calm.

After a few moments, the Lovers lead you into a beautiful reception hall. There’s red carpet, velvet drapes and gorgeous flowers in gold and silver vases. You can see a row of people, lined up to your left, waiting to greet you.

You have relationships with each and every one of these people. Not all of these people are human, there are also spirits and animals there, and you know them all. 

You leave the Lovers where they are and greet each person, spirit, or animal in the line by turn. Each one has something to say to you. When they give you their message, you thank them, and then move down the line. (You can stop to write down each message as you go, or wait until you finish).

Once you reach the end of the line, you discover the Lovers are there waiting for you. They each take your arm and walk you to the top of the marble stairs, You thank them both for escorting you and looking out for you and you begin to descend the stairs on your own.

After the first few steps, you begin to come back to yourself. 

After another few steps, you start to move your fingers and toes, and wriggle slightly on your seat.

Continue descending and once you reach the bottom of the stairs, you come fully back into the room, feeling grateful, happy, and alive.

You can return to this meditation any time you choose and it’s a good one to do when you’re feeling lonely. A word of warning though, if you find the demon is creeping in and the messages you’re getting are negative, then your head’s not really in the space to do this, for now. So,  make sure that you are well enough to go through this journey with the lovers.

As always, if you have any confusion or need anything clarified about your messages, please feel free to message me.Fiona Tate, AKA the Depression Muse, is a Lilithian Witch, Writer, and Mental Health Mentor. She helps people with Depression use it as a superpower and turn it into a Creature of Fucking beauty. She’s on a mission to reduce the global suicide rate to zero. Follow this link to receive a free copy of her book Depression Sucks and join the waitlist to hear more about Black Orchid Alchemy: The alternative way to manage Depression.

LESSONS IN MAGICK: How Do I Do Shadow Work?

A lot of people talk about doing Shadow Work but they don’t explain how to do that. I’ve been doing Shadow Work since I was a teen, never realizing that’s what I was doing. I simply wanted to deconstruct things that I saw in myself that I knew weren’t healthy for me overall. Some I held onto longer than others as a crutch to protect myself until I was in a good place. Some I simply chose to never let go for whatever reason.

If you’re struggling with how to do Shadow Work, here are some prompts to start delving into yourself. Be 100% honest with yourself. It’s ok, no one will see this but you. But it’s important to really call yourself out on things. It’s the only way to get to where and who you want to be.

This is something I’m doing in order to be mentally and emotionally stronger to continue my path in La Regla de Ocha or as it’s commonly known, Santeria / Lukumi / IFA. I don’t want any internal things holding me back from where I will eventually be. External influence is one thing, internal influence is one you can work on intensely.

So here are the prompts. I wish you luck and healthy behaviors. Don’t be afraid of what you find within yourself. This is how to crack yourself open and remove that which doesn’t serve you well.

Shadow Work Prompts

* What are your triggers and what caused them?
* Is there anyone you hold a grudge against? If so, what is holding you back from letting go and moving on?
* Do you feel misunderstood? If yes, what misconceptions do people have of you?
* What do you dislike about yourself most?
* What’s the worst thing you’ve ever done and why did you do it?
* Are you happy with where you are in your life? Is there anything that you can do to improve it?
* Was your childhood negative or positive? Outline the most prominent memories that you have of your younger years.
* What is your relationship like with your family? Has your connection strengthened since you were a child or has it gotten worse?
* What are your parent’s best and worst personality traits? Do you see any of them within yourself?
* Who are you closest to in your life and do they positively reflect who you are? Are you holding on to people that don’t deserve your time and affections? Are you honestly happy in your relationships?
* Are you comfortable in your skin? If there is something that you would like to change about yourself, what is it and why?
* Do you lie to yourself to avoid addressing your fears?
* What characteristics and traits do you dislike in others?
* When are you hardest on yourself and why?
* What emotions do you tend to avoid?
* Do you enforce boundaries with others or are you the type to let people cross lines?
* How did you deal with trauma in the past and what do you do to combat it in the present?
* Are you 100% yourself around others? Do you put on a persona or mask to blend into the crowd? Do you know who you are?
* Do you forgive yourself when you have done something wrong? When you make mistakes can you move on from them or do they continue to hurt you?
* What are your toxic traits?
* Are you happy to be alone in your own company? Do you use other people to fill a void?
* Do you respond well to constructive criticism? Are you over-sensitive to any form of feedback?
* Do you allow yourself to be vulnerable in your romantic relationships? Do you put up walls around yourself and your partner or are you completely open?
* Do you accept yourself as you are?
* What is your deepest, darkest fear?
* Is there anyone in your life that you are competitive with? If yes, what caused this rivalry?
* Do you feel as though people respect you?
* What is your biggest regret and why?
* Do you have any unhealthy attachments or habits? What are you doing to curb them and why have you continued to entertain them?
* Do you practice self-care? Is there more that you could be doing for your wellbeing?

Source:

30 Shadow Work Prompts

MINI SERIES: Part 3- Abortifacients & Ethics

Photo by Nadezhda Moryak:

Part 3- Abortifacients & Ethics

 

Link to Part 1 introduced you to the terms Emmenagogue and Abortifacient.

Link to Part 2 covered some herbs that emmenagogue specific and some toxicity related cases of pennyroyal essential oil.

 

Part 3 Abortifacients & Ethics- submitted a little later because I wanted to make sure I wrote about it not delicately, but *responsibly*; I could list all the herbs that might cause an abortion to occur, but what if you have complications? What if you die? What if you were unable to abort and had to carry to term a fetus born with deformities or the like? Since I am technically in the business of knowledge, this means you wield that sword how *you* choose to. Essentially, I am not responsible for the outcome of *your* choices (some could and would argue that point).

Libraries and google exist, do they not?

Consider me a variation of the two, except with some working knowledge and first-hand personal experience.

Let me be vehemently clear:

Free speech technically allows me to share knowledge as an Herbalist, it *does not* allow me to diagnose or prescribe jack shit to you or for you.

There are many herbs that could possibly cause uterine contractions. There are also many herbs that could cause a great plethora of malice for any unintended outcome that causes bodily strife unrelated to the uterus but was a byproduct regardless of best intentions. It is my hope that you would find a registered herbalist (or appropriate health care professional) to help guide you through this arduous physical process as it is, or can be, mentally and spiritually taxing on an individual just as much.

Let us now define ‘Uterine Stimulant’ as written by encyclopedia.com:

Uterine Stimulants (uterotonics) are medications that cause, or increase the frequency and intensity of, uterine contractions. These drugs are used to induce (start) labor, facilitate uterine contractions following a miscarriage, induce abortion, or reduce hemorrhage following childbirth of abortion. The three uterotonics used most frequently are oxytocin, prostaglandins, and ergots. Depending upon the type of drug, uterotonics may be given intravenously (IV), intramuscular (IM), as a vaginal gel suppository or in oral form. (Encyclopedia 2022)

I have added the link in case any individuals printing/saving/downloading the entire chart would like to do so for their personal record or library. I do not know how much longer this file will be publicly available. I would not use it as an “end” list but a springboard to seek out which specific herb(s) might work best for you.

Only one herb on this pdf list (from University of Texas at El Pasa) specifically was mentioned as a ‘Uterine Stimulant’ and it is as follows:

Dioscorea villosa Wild yam, Cabeza de negro Root and rhizomes Tea, tinctures, capsules Uterine stimulant

It is a rather long list that shares which parts of the plants are used and how or what form to utilize it as; however, please note dosages are not given! FOR THE REST OF THE CHART CLICK HERE. (Also please see the link about ‘herbal safety’ landing page I have provided from UTEP CLICK HERE)

Some information on the wild yam and its ‘scams’ as quoted below from another source. CLICK HERE to read more on that:

Many wild yam products on the market are being marketed as natural progesterone but in fact contain no progesterone. Other products come with false information such as “wild yam has a very high concentration of a substance called diosgenin which converts in the body to natural progesterone.” Other companies promote the misleading concept of “natural progesterone from wild yam.” (Hudson 2022)

 

 

 

Citations:

https://www.utep.edu/herbal-safety/populations/herbs-to-avoid-during-pregnancy.html

Uterine Stimulants.” Gale Encyclopedia of Nursing and Allied Health. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 Apr. 2022 <https://www.encyclopedia.com>.

Vol4_Issue3_11.pdf (phytopharmajournal.com)

Hudson, Tori (n.d. )Women’s Health Update: Wild Yam, Natural Progesterone, Unraveling the Confusion | ENCOGNITIVE.COM, retrieved 05/11/2022

The History of Birth Control: Early Methods, Legal Issues, & More (healthline.com)

 

DISCLAIMER:

ANY INFORMATION WITHIN THIS MINI-SERIES SHOULD NOT BE TAKEN AS MEDICAL ADVICE

BASICS OF BOTANICALS IS NOT A COMPREHENSIVE COMPILATION. It is meant to be a spring-board type guide to getting individuals into searching in-depth further on their own. If any information is incorrect/missing, please email hwsbotanicalsemporium@gmail.com with the following:

  • Citations missing or incomplete
  • Inaccurate information
  • The specific post/article in question

FACEBOOK

INSTAGRAM

 

MINI SERIES: Part 2- Emmenagogue Herbs & Pennyroyal Toxicity Cases

 

Photo by Nadezhda Moryak

 

 

 

Part 2- Emmenagogue Herbs & Pennyroyal Toxicity Cases

In the previous post PART 1 , I wanted to make sure everyone who reads the mini-series is aware of the difference between the two terms; one was emmenagogue and abortifacient. The part 2 post will include a link to read further on pennyroyal toxicity cases and a noncomprehensive list of herbs that may help get blood flowing and may also alleviate some menstrual type related pain- but be sure to ask your doctor for complications or contraindications.  It really helps to know the difference in terminology so you’re not overdosing unintentionally your emmenagogue with what you thought was supposed to be an abortifacient. (Essential oils are mainly topicals or perhaps utilized in diffusers. Never drink or ingest them.)

 

Herbs that move blood and relieve pain

Dr. Michael Tierra L.AC., O.M.D.

1 Vervain 8 Saffron 15 Blue Cohosh
2 Corydalis 9 Calendula 16 Rose Flowers
3 Turmeric 10 Frankincense 17 Chaste Berries
4 Motherwort 11 Myrrh 18 Rue
5 Bugleweed 12 Wild Ginger 19 Collinsonia
6 Peach Seed 13 Penny Royal
7 Safflower 14 Tansy

 

I will not be breaking down each plant/herb within this mini post because I feel PlanetHerbs does it better on their own website as is where I retrieved this chart from, here is the link for them: The Emmenagogues – East West School of Planetary Herbology (planetherbs.com)

We can see here that pennyroyal is actually listed as an EMMENAGOGUE. I will be adding an excerpt from  Naturespoisons.com website on pennyroyals toxicity cases and a link so that the readers can continue to read on further over there.   READ MORE HERE

A brief scenario where an individual consumed the (essential) oil and still left the hospital pregnant despite the trouble and the other one died 7 days later:

Fast-forward nearly 100 years to November 1978 . . . During a four-day period at Denver General Hospital, ED physicians saw two pennyroyal cases (5). The first, an 18-year-old female, presented with abdominal pain and vomiting after intentionally ingesting two one-half-ounce bottles of pennyroyal oil to abort a suspected pregnancy (her pregnancy test at the hospital was negative). The only remarkable finding at the time was metabolic acidosis with an anion gap of 25 mEq/L, but her liver enzymes continued to elevate with commensurate renal failure, and she died 7 days after ingestion. The second patient, a 22-year-old female, ingested 10 mL of pennyroyal oil to induce abortion (her pregnancy test was positive). She presented to the ED with dizziness, and clinical labs were all normal. She was discharged after a two-day observation without further problems and was still pregnant.(Justin 2022)

I am not making any claims that pennyroyal tea would be any better; I suggest not following suggestions that are on social media such as Tiktok. If you had been on there and wondered why so many were against pennyroyal after following that hashtag ride, this would specifically be their reasons.  As with any other of listed herbs, do your due diligence and read up on their toxicity case findings or ask your local health care professional about it for educational purposes or contraindications there may be.

Again, please locate the appropriate healthcare professional for your individual needs.

Here is the link for Registered Herbalist in the US:

Registered Herbalists | American Herbalists Guild

 

Citations

Tierra, n.d., The Emmenagogues – East West School of Planetary Herbology (planetherbs.com)

JUSTIN 2022, Pennyroyal: Nature’s Herb or Abortifacient? | Nature’s Poisons (naturespoisons.com)

 

DISCLAIMER:

ANY INFORMATION WITHIN THIS MINI-SERIES SHOULD NOT BE TAKEN AS MEDICAL ADVICE

BASICS OF BOTANICALS IS NOT A COMPREHENSIVE COMPILATION. It is meant to be a spring-board type guide to getting individuals into searching in-depth further on their own. If any information is incorrect/missing, please email hwsbotanicalsemporium@gmail.com with the following:

  • Citations missing or incomplete
  • Inaccurate information
  • The specific post/article in question

FACEBOOK

INSTAGRAM

MINI SERIES: Part 1- Emmenagogue & Abortifacient

 

 

Photo by Nadezhda Moryak from Pexels

Part 1: Emmenagogue & Abortifacient

So, you want to restart your menstrual flow? Or, did you want an abortion?

So much so that you’re willing to try the first herb mentioned on TikTok? What was it again? Pennyroyal? Do you know which part of the herb you’d use? Are you supposed to ingest essential oils? How much of it should you take to really kickstart that uterine cramping to get flow going?

Tiktok is never the source for these kinds of questions because you open yourself up to hurting yourself so badly you could accidentally kill yourself in the process. Most folks do NOT have your best interests in mind and are only after a buzz word to increase their platform exposure.

Two words I’d like you to familiarize yourself with first are emmenagogue and abortifacient.

Emmenagogue, according to the FREE MEDICAL DICTIONARY by FARLEX:

“A drug or agent that induces or hastens menstrual flow” (emmenagogue, n.d.)

“Emmenagogue is an herb used to increase the menstrual flow. Herbal emmenagogues include black cohosh (Cimicifufa racemosa), blue cohosh (Caulophyllum thalictroides), life root ( Senecio aureus), mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris), pennyroyal (Hedeoma pulegioides), pulsatilla (Anemone pulsatilla), southernwood (Artmesia abrotanum), squaw vine (Mitchella repens), and tansy (Tanacetum vulgare).” (Segen’s 2011)

Abortifacient, according to the FREE MEDICAL DICTIONARY by FARLEX:

  1. Causing abortion
  2. An agent that induces abortion (Miller-Keane 2003)

“ A drug, herb, chemical or other substance that dilates the cervix and causes the uterus to contract, resulting in spontaneous termination of pregnancy. Fringe obstetrics- A potentially toxic herb- e.g., pennyroyal, black cohosh, blue cohosh, parsley, and tansy, which evoke spontaneous abortion. Pharmacology- An agent that induces the expulsion of an embryo or fetus, e.g., prostaglandin E1 analogues- misoprostol, gemeprost.” (abortifacient segen’s 2011)

 

While I am not a Registered Herbalist with the American Herbalist Guild (although I’d love to be) it is my recommendation you seek out your local registered herbalist that’s either listed with the Guild, or someone who has extensive working knowledge (runs a mentorship), or is someone with appropriate credentialing beyond “I taught myself”; which is easy for anyone to say, because there isn’t any credentialing body in the USA for herbalist like there are for nurses and doctors. Scams and curio health items have flooded the market. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with the “I taught myself” crowd because that’s basically where most of us have started from anyway. I’m just suggesting folks seek out someone who’s not just throwing around herbs on a social media platform because they saw it was listed in a free medical dictionary. At least for something as serious as a menstrual restart, abortion, or “uterine flush.”

Please refer to this resource to find your local registered herbalist:

Registered Herbalists | American Herbalists Guild

 

Citations

emmenagogue. (n.d.) The American Heritage® Medical Dictionary. (2007). Retrieved May 10 2022 from https://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/emmenagogue

emmenagogue. (n.d.) Segen’s Medical Dictionary. (2011). Retrieved May 10 2022 from https://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/emmenagogue

Abortifacent. (n.d.) Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. (2003). Retrieved May 10 2022 from https://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Abortifacent

Abortifacent. (n.d.) Segen’s Medical Dictionary. (2011). Retrieved May 10 2022 from https://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Abortifacent

DISCLAIMER:

ANY INFORMATION WITHIN THIS MINI-SERIES SHOULD NOT BE TAKEN AS MEDICAL ADVICE

BASICS OF BOTANICALS IS NOT A COMPREHENSIVE COMPILATION. It is meant to be a spring-board type guide to getting individuals into searching in-depth further on their own. If any information is incorrect/missing, please email hwsbotanicalsemporium@gmail.com with the following:

  • Citations missing or incomplete
  • Inaccurate information
  • The specific post/article in question

FACEBOOK

INSTAGRAM

 

Taroting Depression with the Hierophant

The Hierophant Tarot Card from The Dark Wood Tarot by Sasha Graham and Abigail Larsen

As much as I love all the cards in the tarot, I’m always excited when I see the hierophant turn up in my personal readings.

The Hierophant is the spiritual  teacher of the deck. They hold the keys to all the secrets and mysticism that the rest of the cards contain. 

When you have Depression, spirituality can be a tricky thing. In my opinion, the stereotypical idea of the religious fanatic has contributed at least some of the stigma and discrimination that surrounds mental illness. 

There’s no doubt that for some people, a sudden interest or increase in interest in spiritual matters is a symptom of them becoming unwell. For others, it can be a source of huge comfort.

If you’re reading this blog, I’m going to assume the latter. Spirituality, whether or not it includes an organized religion, can often be the one place where we feel completely accepted and safe.

For me, my daily spiritual practice is essential to my wellbeing. It reminds me that this life I’m living is not all there is. And it’s not all I am. It reminds me that I’m part of something bigger, and that I’m going to be okay. No matter what happens.

A  man sitting under a purple night sky

My spirituality involves the practice of meditation, which is essential for keeping my emotions from running all over the place. A few minutes a day is all I need and I usually include visualization as I struggle to keep my brain perfectly still.

Journey with the Hierophant

A journey with the Hierophant can open you up to new mystical information and ideas. Or it can reconnect you when your practice is feeling a bit stale. 

Sit, or lie down comfortably and take a few moments to wriggle about and settle yourself. 

Begin with some box breathing. Make sure that when you breathe in, it’s the deepest breath you can manage.

Now, breathe in for a count of four, hold  for a count of four, release for a count of four, hold for a count of four.

Once more, breathe in for a count of four, hold for a count of four, release for a count of four, and hold for a count of four.

One more time, breathe in for a count of four, hold for a count of four, release for a count of four, and hold for a count of four.

Continue to breathe deeply and imagine yourself standing at the edge of a dense forest. You can smell the leaves on the trees and feel the sun on your back. As you take a few steps in, you stop for a moment to listen to the sounds of the forest.

After a few moments, you take another few steps and notice that the sky is getting darker and although the temperature is cooling slightly, you’re still comfortable.

You continue walking in the forest until you come across an old tree standing on its own. 

You sit down in front of the tree. Where the roots emerge from the ground, at the base of the tree, you can see patterns, figures, and scratches. What story are they telling you?

Spend a few moments here and once you feel you’ve uncovered all of the story the tree has to tell, stand up and reach into your pocket. Whatever is in there, is your gift for the tree. Gently place it within its branches.

Slowly walk back through the forest, the way you came, until you reach the edge again.

Take 3 deep breaths.

Wiggle your toes and fingers and come back to yourself.

Spend some time writing in your journal until you have a full understanding of what the tree was telling you. Then decide how you can take this lesson further.

Remember that you can journey with the Hierophant anytime you choose.

Fiona Tate, AKA the Depression Muse, is a Lilithian Witch, Writer, and Mental Health Mentor. She helps people with Depression use it as a superpower and turn it into a Creature of Fucking beauty. She’s on a mission to reduce the global suicide rate to zero. Follow this link to receive a free copy of her book Depression Sucks and join the waitlist to hear more about Black Orchid Alchemy: The alternative way to manage Depression.

Taroting Depression with the Emperor

Ahh, the Emperor. Is it a coincidence that he follows the Empress? Actually, in tarot, gender isn’t important to the cards, at least not in the form that we often think of.

The Emperor is known as the ruler of the world. He stands, or sits on his throne, on the top of a mountain, surveying all that is below. He is sure of himself, quiet in his authority, and is now in a position where he can appreciate the results of his hard work.

The Emperor also speaks of advocacy: he looks out for the little guy  and offers protection. But not just that, he also wants to bring the little guy up to his level. He’s the teacher who role models the characteristics and traits of a leader.

The Emperor seems elusive when we are struggling with Depression and it’s hard for us to believe that we could ever reach the top of the mountain. We can’t even see the top from where we are.

But, one thing to remember, when we see the Emperor at the top of the mountain, we don’t know what, or who he was, before he got there. We don’t know if he, too, thought the top of the mountain was unattainable at one time. 

We only see the end result.

When we’re at the bottom of the abyss, the place where all we know is despair and misery, the top of the mountain is something to strive for. But, as in all things in life, we won’t get there in one big step. We need to take smaller, shorter, steps and keep our eye on the goal right in front of us, not the one that seems too high.

In this way, with each goal we achieve, we get one step closer to the top of the mountain. The place where we own our authority, where we become role models to others, and where we finally know, our truth.

Our truth. Not somebody else’s. Ours.

Working with the Emperor is not complicated and there are a few helpful options.

  • Sleep with the Emperor card under your pillow. Before you drop off, set the intention that you’re going to spend some time with the Emperor, learning his wisdom. You can also ask for specific questions to be answered by him.
  • Spend some time meditating with the Emperor card. Ask some specific questions such as: What is the next step for me to take towards going up the mountain?
  • Spend an hour, or however long you need, journaling with the Emperor in front of you. Here’s some prompts:
    • What aspects of the Emperor resonant with me the most?
    • What traits and skills do I expect from a leader?
    • Which traits of the Emperor do I already have? 
    • Which do I need to develop?
    • What message does the Emperor have for me?

The thing about Depression is that it makes everything seem so hard. And that’s why it’s so important that the goals we set for ourselves are achievable. It’s fine to want more, in fact, I’m a firm believer in creating “more” from your Depression. But you can only see the big things in sight after you work through the smaller things.

The Emperor reminds us of what’s possible for all of us. Even with Depression.

Fiona Tate, AKA the Depression Muse, is a Lilithian Witch, Writer, and Mental Health Mentor. She helps people with Depression use it as a superpower and turn it into a Creature of Fucking beauty. She’s on a mission to reduce the global suicide rate to zero. Follow this link to receive a free copy of her book Depression Sucks and join the waitlist to hear more about Black Orchid Alchemy: The alternative way to manage Depression.

Taroting Depression: The Empress Tarot Card

The Empress from the Dark Wood Tarot by Sasha Graham and Abigail Larsen

The Empress comes to us as a woman about to give birth. Indeed she can also be seen as Mother Earth herself. She is glowing with life and the fullness that comes from being about to bring something or someone into the world. 

The Empress knows her power comes from love and that is also her gift. She is sure of her place in this world and although her task is to give birth, that is not all she is.

Many of us who have Depression have made a conscious choice not to have children, so that we don’t pass this terrible condition on. And many of us are childless by circumstance, as I am. Children didn’t happen for me and coming to terms with this very nearly put me right over the edge. I came dangerously close to allowing the demon to win and to take me over fully.

Goddess knows that would have been easier.

But it wouldn’t have been true to my path. 

Although I’ve never given birth to a child, I’ve given birth to many ideas, books, relationships, and other creative endeavors. 

The Empress can bring news of the birth of a child, but she can also bring news of the birth of an idea, a project, a new attitude, even something simple as a new day. She’s about the abundance of earth, nature, and love. Simply love.

When we have Depression, often the only abundance we can see is misery. We feel we are too much, too sad, too useless, too…whatever. 

This isn’t true. And the Empress reminds us that abundance can be found in simple things, if we choose to look for it. And she also reminds us that we don’t usually have to look too hard. 

If you’re struggling to see the abundant beauty in your life or in your surroundings, work with the Empress. She’ll show you how and where to find it.

colorful roses

Walking with the wisdom of the Empress

Sit, or lie down comfortably and take a few moments to wriggle about and settle yourself. 

Begin with some box breathing. Make sure that when you breathe in, it’s the deepest breath you can manage.

Now, breathe in for a count of four, hold  for a count of four, release for a count of four, hold for a count of four.

Once more, breathe in for a count of four, hold for a count of four, release for a count of four, and hold for a count of four.

One more time, breathe in for a count of four, hold for a count of four, release for a count of four, and hold for a count of four.

Continue to breathe deeply as you picture yourself standing at the top of some beautiful marble stairs, leading down to a grassy open field. 

As you take your first step down the stairs you start to relax your entire body. Another two steps down and you relax even deeper.

The next two steps have you feeling even more relaxed but it’s tinged with a little bit of excitement as you know you’re about to go on a new adventure.

The next two steps lead you to the bottom of the stairs. You feel the grass under your bare feet and you can smell the faint aroma of roses off in the distance.

You walk towards the beautiful scent and find yourself in a small, circular, garden full of rose bushes, of many different colors. Blue, violet, pink, white, red, even black.

In the center of the garden there’s a marble bench and a beautiful pregnant woman is sitting on it. She beckons you to sit next to her, which you do.

What color is the woman’s dress? What meaning does that color have for you?

What perfume is she wearing? What does that remind you of?

What message does the woman have for you?

If you have any other questions for her, now is the time to ask them.

The woman reaches behind her and pulls out a small package with a red bow on it, and she hands it to you.

What’s in the package? Whatever’s in there is a clue to a part of your life where you can focus on the abundance and beauty of it. It’s something that you can always have with you, to remind you that you do have love around you. 

You thank the woman for the gift and she tells you that you’re always welcome here in her garden and you can return anytime you feel the need to.

You turn to leave and begin your walk back to the marble stairs. You feel warm, relaxed, and confident with your new gift and your new sense of abundance. 

As you take the first two steps you wiggle your toes and your fingers.

The next two steps have you coming back to awareness of your body and your surroundings.

When you reach the top of the stairs, you open your eyes, wide awake and feeling relaxed and grateful.

If you’d like some help with anything the meditation has brought up for you, please just email me at drusilla@depressionmuse.com and I’ll help you interpret your gift.

Tarot Deck used is the Dark Wood Tarot by Sasha Graham and Abigail Larsen.

Fiona Tate, AKA the Depression Muse, is a Lilithian Witch, Writer, and Mental Health Mentor. She helps people with Depression use it as a superpower and turn it into a Creature of Fucking beauty. She’s on a mission to reduce the global suicide rate to zero. Follow this link to receive a free copy of her book Depression Sucks and join the waitlist to hear more about Black Orchid Alchemy: The alternative way to manage Depression.

Taroting Depression: The High Priestess

The High Priestess speaks to us of spirituality. Not necessarily religion, but spirituality. 

The High Priestess Tarot card from the Dark Wood Tarot by Sasha Graham and Abigail Larsen

What does spirituality mean to you?

For myself, spirituality is my ongoing work with Lilith, my connection to my spiritual guides, and ancestors, and my constant questioning and refining of my belief in an afterlife. It’s my core being. My soul, if you like.

For you, it might be something different. It could be a specific religion, it could be a love of nature and spending time outdoors, it could even be a fandom of some sort. 

Spirituality is the tool you use that feeds your soul. It’s the thing when you lose all track of time, and when you feel fulfilled, and at peace.

We have food to feed our bodies and we have spirituality to feed our souls.

Why is spirituality so important when you have Depression?

Because your soul is hurting. Depression goes beyond sadness, beyond pain, and beyond thought. However it starts, it results in a chemical imbalance in the brain and until you can get the imbalance “re-balanced,” you need something to believe in.

In the deck I’m using, which is the Dark Wood Tarot by Sasha Graham and Abigail Larsen, the High Priestess is holding a scroll with “Tarot” written on it. This suggests that her version of spirituality involves revealing many secrets and mysteries.

She brazenly, and with pride, shows us the way.

Let’s spend some time with the High Priestess.

When you go to bed tonight, place the High Priestess card under your pillow. If you don’t have your own tarot deck you can print one from the internet or even just write the words “The High Priestess” on a piece of paper and put that under your pillow.

When you close your eyes, out loud, or in your head, ask the High Priestess to send you, in dreams or any other form, during the night, a lesson about spirituality, just for you. 

Make sure you have a pen and paper beside you so that you can write down your dreams, insights, or thoughts as they come to you when you wake up. Don’t worry about writing them down word perfect, you just want the general gist of what you were being told.

This doesn’t have to be a one-off thing, you can do this exercise as many times as you like. And don’t forget that once you get the information, you need to use it. Spend some time working with your new insight, do some research, read more about the High Priestess. 

The goal of the High Priestess is to get you to become, and sometimes create, a spiritual life for yourself. Having something other than yourself to believe in is a powerful tool against the demon Depression. It gives you another focus, something outside yourself, while at the same time, something deeply within yourself.

After all, there has to be a higher purpose of some sort, doesn’t there? 

Tarot Deck used is the Dark Wood Tarot by Sasha Graham and Abigail Larsen.

Fiona Tate, AKA the Depression Muse, is a Lilithian Witch, Writer, and Mental Health Mentor. She helps people with Depression use it as a superpower and turn it into a Creature of Fucking beauty. She’s on a mission to reduce the global suicide rate to zero. Follow this link to receive a free copy of her book Depression Sucks and join the waitlist to hear more about Black Orchid Alchemy: The alternative way to manage Depression.

Taroting Depression: The Magician

The Magician Tarot Card from the Dark Wood Tarot by Sasha Graham and Abigal Larsen

The Magician is our first step in the journey of the tarot. He is the all-powerful wizard who understands that nothing can be manifested that doesn’t include all four elements: earth, air, fire, and water.

The Magician speaks of “as above, so below” and we see this represented in the Rider Waite- Colman Smith deck as he stands with his wand pointed to the sky and his other hand pointed down to the earth.

The Magician surrounds himself with the tools of his trade and his table is laid out in preparation for his next ritual. What magic is he about to conjure?’’

At first glance, the Magician may appear to be irrelevant to those of us who live with Depression, but take a closer look and we can see that the Magician has a great lesson to teach us.

The phrase of “as above, so below”, is often followed by “as within, so without.” The lesson of the Magician is simple. To obtain the outer world we want to have, we need to fill our inner world with the things we want.

Let me put it another way. If we want to live a life without the demon Depression on our backs, we have to create an inner life that is in tune with that.

Easier said than done, though, isn’t it?

That doesn’t mean it’s impossible. 

Now, we can go the affirmations route but personally, I’ve never been a fan of the “fake it until you make it” theory. To me, telling myself something I don’t believe is completely pointless. 

Sometimes, starting the affirmation with “I believe I am becoming…” can work, but only if you believe it’s possible and when you have Depression, it’s very hard to believe that anything rather than despair is possible.

To me, it makes more sense to aim for something that I believe is possible for me to achieve. Once I do that, I can set my next goal, and on it goes. The Magician can help us do that.

The Magician reminds us of what’s possible. And when you’re struggling with Depression, you need to be reminded of what’s possible.

Let’s see what the Magician has to tell us.

Wooden gate in a leafy garden

  • Sit, or lie down comfortably, close your eyes, and take a deep breath. And another. And another one.
  • Imagine yourself standing in front of a wooden gate. You open the gate and walk through
  • Take notice of what’s going on around you as you walk. What can you hear? What can you smell? What can you see? Is it a sunny day? Cloudy? Night or day? 
  • As you continue your walk, you can see a tall, robed, figure standing off in the distance, behind a table set with a tablecloth and a number of items.
  • As you approach the figure, he winks at you and beckons you forward so that you can see what he has on his table. 
  • The Magician asks you to choose an item to take back with you.
  • You take an offering from the table.
  • What is it? What color is it? What shape? What size? What’s it for? How does it make you feel? What’s it’s magick?
  • When you’re ready, you thank the Magician and walk back down the path you came.
  • When you reach the gate, take three deep breaths and then walk through.

Take out your journal and write down all the events of your walk and meeting with the Magician. Be as descriptive and detailed as possible.

Take another look at your gift. What about it reminds you of your Depression? What about it reminds you of something or someone that you love? What about your gift gives you hope?

Try not to give these questions too much thought, just go with the first answer that enters your mind. That’s where you’ll find your “as within.” At the end of this exercise, you’ll have an aspect of Depression that you can work on healing from, and a person, activity, or thing that you can reconnect with to bring you even a tiny amount of pleasure. You’ll also have something to hope for.

Come back to this exercise as many times as you feel the need to and if you’re really struggling with it, leave me a comment and I’ll try to help.

Tarot Deck used is the Dark Wood Tarot by Sasha Graham and Abigail Larsen.

Fiona Tate, AKA the Depression Muse, is a Lilithian Witch, Writer, and Mental Health Mentor. She helps people with Depression use it as a superpower and turn it into a Creature of Fucking beauty. She’s on a mission to reduce the global suicide rate to zero. Follow this link to receive a free copy of her book Depression Sucks and join the waitlist to hear more about Black Orchid Alchemy: The alternative way to manage Depression.