This spread, activate your strange jewels, is from the Over the Moon – blog, who in turn borrowed it from Happy Fish Tarot. Carrie of Happy Fish got the inspiration for her spread from Elizabeth Gilbert, the author of Eat Pray Love and Big Magic.
Carrie describes the spread like this:
We all have innate creative strengths, but for many of us these “strange jewels” (as Elizabeth Gilbert calls them) seem inaccessible and hidden. This reading will guide you in unearthing and using your own strange jewels! You’ll get actionable tips on understanding your gifts and actively engaging your creativity.
Elizabeth in turn describes what she means by “the strange jewels” like this:
I’ve always embraced magical thinking when it comes to creativity. I see inspiration as a mysterious external force that comes to us from unknown realms, in order to collaborate with our imaginations. This is how humans saw the artistic process for thousands of years, and it still works for me!
I certainly like this fanciful approach to creativity better than the modern notion of the tormented artist, suffering alone in anguish and martyrdom. My book is an effort to lure people back into the “Big Magic” — into a more celebratory and mystical way of being a maker. (from the Etsy Blog)
And, this is how you do it:
Activate your strange jewels
(or, unearth your hidden, unexpected talents or traits)
Card 1- Accessible Gifts: 8 CUPS.
This card talks about leaving an unsatisfactory or unfulfilling situation behind for a quest to find what makes one happy. At first sight, this does not look like a positive gift, but on a deeper level, this is a very pertinent card. I’ve never been afraid in life to leave a situation (or location, action, feeling or person) behind which or who does not serve a positive purpose anymore, even if it once brought joy.
I guess this is a good talent to have, because if I were afraid to move on, nothing would ever change. This definitely changed my view of the 8 Cups as the card of sad abandonment of something. Walking away is not always a bad thing – in fact, it can be the first step of something new and great -, even if it hurts at the moment of leaving.
Card 2 - Unconscious Gifts: DEVIL.
This is even more cryptic at the first sight than the 8 Cups. How could negative forces, unhealthy attachments and fear possibly be good gifts? Then it clicked.
I have a tendency of getting obsessed by whatever interests me. It can be anything from tarot to the nature of reality to travel stories to thriller novels. I go through periods of finding out everything I can about a topic, dwelling in it, thinking – definitely overthinking – it. It’s not the healthiest way to be passionate, but it’s quite effective. This obsessive period of a few weeks or up to months is a crash course on whatever topic I’m into, and I gain the knowledge for the rest of my life. This most definitely is an unconscious and unexpected, strange jewel!
Card 3 - Challenges of Your Gifts: STAR.
I regularly seek guidance (from tarot, my intuition, synchronities and other signs around) and I’m a positive and upbeat person by nature, but I also have a tendency/downfall to not trust this guidance and sense of direction. One day I’m sure my purpose is to be a teacher of tarot and intuition. The next day I’m sure my purpose is to be a travel blogger. The third, it’s something else. I keep losing track due to overthinking and overactive imagination – but mainly, impatience.
When things don’t go to the direction I’m expecting or hoping them to go, I start doubting myself and the plans I have: should I change them? Is this after all what I’m supposed to be doing? And round and round in circles I go, not achieving what I could, but beating the bush in the dark, without seeing the star above me. Point taken, better keep scanning and following that star even during the darkest moments!
Card 4 - Your Contribution: KING OF PENTACLES.
This card is intended to represent why your gifts are important and how they contribute to the world. This is the entrepreneur card for me: a person who is in charge and enjoys controlling the material realm.
It’s my dream to have my own, financially and emotionally successful business and with this tarot site I’m taking first tentative steps to that direction. I’ve had a one person consultancy business before (arts and culture projects and event production) and I loved it – besides the financial side, which was not bountiful. This time I hope to make the most out of my strange talents by offering them to the world and hopefully making a living at the side. So perhaps my skill to courageously leave things behind and look for something more can inspire others to do the same, and leave whatever is not working in their lives behind for something new.
Card 5 - Real-World Application: 10 CUPS.
My strange gifts have the ability to make me and my partner/family/friends very happy. This is the card of domestic bliss, overflowing happiness and overall satisfaction in life. Maybe my gift and spreading it can make the people around me, or the people who seek guidance or advice from me, happy? What more could I ask? Not a thing!
Card 6 - Advice: TOWER.
The final card gives advice on taking the next step. Whoa, this is a disturbing card to get – the card of destruction, shock, crumbling beliefs or expectations. Maybe it means I should not have any fixed or cemented mental constructions about myself or the world around me: I don’t have the whole truth or the right picture, when I start cementing my views. It’s good to be flexible and adaptable, and understand that in life, things change constantly – including myself and my own abilities.
|Big Magic, Elizabeth Gilbert's new book about creativity. Picture via Etsy Blog.|