Earth Wisdom Tarot Sacred Art

A Flaming Five of Fire

in Art, Gaian Tarot

5offireA fire performer spits billowing flames out of his mouth.  Twisted faces of gargoyles or maddened creatures form in the smoke and fire. 

Divinatory meaning:  Anger, rage, fury. Hubris. A dangerous game.  The temptation to dominate or have power over others. 

Still working on those pesky Five’s.  Who wants to live in the world of the Five’s?  We need to keep looking for pockets of peace in the midst of conflict — at least that’s my experience while creating the Five’s.  It’s a good metaphor, I think, for approaching life during times like these. (Did you see the recent newspaper article that says that most Americans are gloomier than ever?  Can’t imagine why).  I found myself getting deeply caught up in the patterns and shapes of the flames and smoke while I was working on this piece, trancing out a bit.  I had too many errands to do in town on Monday, so I took my drawing board, colored pencils, clip-on light and portable sharpener with me.  I worked on the flames in the waiting room at Jiffy Lube and again at Les Schwab.  <giggle>  There’s something very appropriate about all that dirty oil-and-fire energy around car repair places that went into this card.   All that dependence on oil . . . the flames of war . . . Hmm.  Interesting where the image on a Tarot card will take you if you let your mind just float.

What do you all see in this new card?

Thoughtful, sparkling comments. . .

  • Inanna Wed - May 23rd 2007 8:57 am

    I gasped out loud. Wow.
    This card is much more elemental than the five of wands usually is. I feel blasted in that fire.
    Here is a transcript of my initial thoughts as they came to me (after the above reaction):
    “Why is the fire coming out of a person’s mouth?”
    “This card reminds me of Lightning (the Tower).”
    “But human agency matters for the five of fire. It’s not like lightning, which feels like a force of nature, a sudden change I have no control over. With the five of fire, we burn ourselves.”

  • Heather Wed - May 23rd 2007 9:43 am

    Reminds me of of the phrase ‘hot head.’ Ever know someone like that? Short-tempered, easily set off.
    I love it. Your images always give me a new spin, new depth, on the card meanings.

  • Angela Wed - May 23rd 2007 10:06 am

    I notice that, while he may be expressing the fire of his anger, he is not being burned by it. Depending on the other cards in context of the reading, it could also be the healthy venting of anger rather than the repression of it.

  • JLB Thu - May 24th 2007 5:52 am

    I see “catalyst”… that flashpoint at which everything changes in a new direction, and there’s no going back on what is now a clear shift in perspective or purpose.
    It reminds me of how sometimes, there might be a change on the horizon, but I’ll be dragging my feet, or simply UNABLE to wiggle myself into motion… and I just feel stuck. Then suddenly some small thing (or series of things) will give, and the changes cascade with great fluidity.
    I suppose, after rereading my thoughts, that I would seem to agree with Inanna in that this card connects with the Lightning card (for more than just the obvious/visual reasons). And the Lightning card is one of my favorites in the Gaian Tarot…
    This one will be on my mind all day Joanna, I assure you!

  • Joanna Thu - May 24th 2007 8:58 am

    Wow, great thoughts, all of you. Thanks so much. I agree that the card could be read in a very positive way — just as the traditional 5 of Wands can be read as “fighting the good fight.” I had not thought of it as echoing Lightning, but now I see that it does. BTW there’s many more faces in the smoke and flames than I put there consciously, and I keep seeing new ones!

  • Charyn Thu - May 24th 2007 10:08 am

    WOW! That is the most elemental and mesmerizing card I’ve seen yet! The flames are very seductive, you just get pulled – I couldn’t stop staring at them. They’re so ALIVE!I just saw a dragons head. Cool!!!

  • Lunaea Thu - May 24th 2007 10:12 am

    Wow! Very cool! Errr, hot! Errr… girl, you are SMOKIN’! 🙂 As always, I am in awe of your vision and skill, and can’t wait to hold a completed deck in my hand.

  • Cate (KerrdeLune Sat - May 26th 2007 3:04 pm

    Joanna, this card is breathtaking, and I found myself thinking that for all the fire artist’s stance, the flames and the gargoyles, the fire is being directed upward, so there is a transcendance at work here.
    For me drawing this card in a reading has traditionally signified blocked energies resulting from restrictions the carrying of heavy burdens, often the lack of faith in my own creativity and personal power.
    It’s a scary card at the best of times, but it is also a positive card in my book – it also signifies not caving in and giving up or despairing, but breaking loose, tearing off one’s shackles, standing tall and proud and going on ahead in a courageous, resolute and clear sighted way – it is card of liberation, courage, awakening and resolution.
    This five is magnificent, and says everything beautifully. Well done!!!

  • Tamara Tue - May 29th 2007 2:02 am

    I immediately thought of a volcanic eruption and also of a Phoenix–it’s potential to rise from the ashes.
    It also reminded me of the Tower card.
    I am a novice tarot reader, and I “get” these cards quickly vs the traditional tarot decks. I am impatiently waiting to purchase the whole deck. 🙂

  • Patricia (a/k/a Roswila) Mon - Jun 04th 2007 11:25 am

    Wowsers! I picked up especially on your comment about getting caught up in the shapes in the smoke and flames. I think that’s often what keeps us in a 5 of Fire state, instead of looking at or maybe not being able to see where the fire is actually coming from/what’s causing it. My own feelings about the 5 of Fire are, for the most part, less intense. But what I say here would still apply: we (I’ll own it: I :-D) get caught up in what the struggle looks/feels like to the exclusion of what is actually going on. Just some thoughts in response to an amazing card!