Earth Wisdom Tarot Sacred Art

Elder of Fire: A Tarot Spread for All Hallow’s Eve

in Spirituality, Tarot, Wheel of the Year

Elder of FireI decided to design a spread for Samhain based on the Elder of Fire . . . that card is so powerful, and it mystifies even me. I’ve been tweaking the questions for the spread over the last few days, and finally settled on it yesterday.  When I did a reading, I was quite surprised with how deep it went.  It took me in some directions I hadn’t anticipated.

Elder of Fire SpreadGaze into the eyes of the Elder of Fire . . .

1. Offering: What or who is dead or dying, that you need to honor?

2. Challenge: What task does the Elder of Fire ask of you?

3. Center: Where do you find your center of power?

4. Opening: What new sweetness is wafting in on the scent of burning herbs?

5. Wisdom: What secrets do the ancestors whisper to you this All Hallows Eve?

My Reading

Guardian of Water1. Offering: What or who is dead or dying, that you need to honor?   Guardian of Water

I was so surprised to see such a positive card turn up in this position, and then my mind leaped to the Waters of the World that are endangered . . . I remembered all the ceremonies that were done for the Gulf, and most especially the prayer that Dr. Emoto taught us.  Clearly I am being asked to go back to a regular honoring of and prayers for the Waters of the World.

This also reminds me of the workshop Beth Owl and I led last Saturday, where the class did wisdom readings for the healing of the earth as well as for our own healing.

Nine of Air2. Challenge: What task does the Elder of Fire ask of you?  Nine of Air

My task is (always) to learn to ground my sorrow and grief, release it and move on.  To remember that She Who Watches always has my back.

3. Center: Where do you find your center of power?
Five of Earth

Five of EarthI know how to survive the most devastating of circumstances, whether it’s the death of a loved one, a chronic illness, or financial limitations. I’ve done it many times in my life and if I am called upon to do it again, I do know how to survive.  And thrive once again.  This is the center, my place of power — this is something I do indeed know.

4. Opening: What new sweetness is wafting in on the scent of burning herbs?   Two of Air

Two of AirListening to the still small voice, proceeding at the pace of guidance . . . this reminds me of the “divine download” I received at Beth’s house, when I came up with all kinds of detailed plans for 2011.  It also reminds me of a recurring conversation I had with Beth while I was there, about always checking in with one’s heart before proceeding with business plans or decisions.

Ace of Water5. Wisdom: What secrets do the ancestors whisper to you this All Hallows Eve?
Ace of Water

The cycle of descent and return — literally, the salmon of wisdom.  What could be more perfect for a Wisdom card?   There is a lot in this reading about returning to one’s heart, listening to one’s heart.  Compassion flowing, struggles and journeys, death and rebirth.  At the beginning and the end, an overflowing heart.

Dear Readers, I’d love for you to post your own readings based on this spread. Blessed be.


Thoughtful, sparkling comments. . .

  • Loran Sun - Oct 31st 2010 6:18 pm

    Wow, Joanna. I just used your spread and questions with amazing results! Thank you for sharing this. The Elder of Fire is perfect for this night of power and transformation.

    Offering: Ace of Air
    I offer my maidenhood as I enter my Cronedom. The spring blossoms have flowered and died. The butterfly returns to the chrysalis for wintry introspection. Yes I like to stay cozy and comfortable. Time to offer that up.

    Challenge: Nine of Fire
    To practice my spirituality and stay on the path of meditation. To keep my chakra energies flowing and healthy. Self-discipline is a challenge for me.

    Center: Ace of Water
    I have inner Wisdom. It is my center. To be in the flow of things. The salmon pointed to my fourth card.

    Opening: Guardian of Fire
    I need to embrace my creative fires and help them burn. I am old enough now to recognize my own worth. I feel secure.

    Wisdom: Six of Water
    I love this because of the mermaid sisters who gather in the Goddess Circle. This imagery comes up with Leonie all the time. I honor my connections with my sisters online and in real time!

    Charlene Spretnak wrote in Persephone’s voice:

    “You have waxed into the fullness of life
    And waned into darkness;
    May you be renewed in tranquility and wisdom.”

    I re-discovered this quote yesterday. Like the moon in the Guardian of Fire, I too have waxed and am now waning, but I am renewed in tranquility (if I practice) and the wisdom that comes with age.

    I feel creative fires igniting. Now manifesting them is the challenge!

  • H Sun - Oct 31st 2010 7:52 pm

    Here is mine…I also had a very powerful reading. Thank you so much!

    Offering: 4 of fire
    Challenge: Temperance
    Center: 5 of earth
    Opening: Explorer of water
    Wisdom: 4 of water

    The Elder of Fire says I’m done being single. I need to honor all the years I stood in the sacred circle alone, and my will and ability to survive alone. The ancestors whisper: look up, realize how very beloved you are, be healed.

  • Joanna Mon - Nov 01st 2010 8:16 am

    Ah, thank you both for sharing these readings! Such wisdom emerging. I especially love the Charlene Spretnak quote, Loran. Blessings to you . . .

  • Brenda Wed - Nov 03rd 2010 1:17 pm

    Hi Joanna…such a powerful reading for me also…took a couple days to process and still processing!

    offering- the hanged man- I need to honor he stillness of my soul. (I do tend to hibenate this time of year.) I need to be relaxed and confident in my beliefs that all will turn out well.

    challenge- ace of cups- new emotional connection to my art work and the magical places btween land/water. no fear of what might happen it is the best it can be.

    center- 7 cups my power is in my dreams, my imagination, positive visulization. I need to add acion to the above. and examin the choises and pick one. Focus on hear to make decision

    opening- loversI need to assess my strenghts and weakness. Balance, hold on passionately to magic, beauty, love/power will follow

    Wisdom- 5 pentacles/7 pentacles I wasn’t sure when I pulled this card as my wisdom card and pulled the 7 also. Lessons in charity. No matte how bad things canget’ hopw hopeless you feel look for the light…(I have been called a Pollyanna) I need to let my Virgo moon make lists and plan ahead will elimated unneccesary stress. and avoik last min crises….

    thank you for this…I don’t usually do reads this much for myself but will start journaling more now on my spreads…the wisdom I found, it does help me to write this down and be able to process it better. I even looked up different cards to get other meanings from the cards too..and used it as a study quide…Will suggest this to my clients also.

  • Joanna Thu - Nov 04th 2010 8:32 am

    Brenda, so glad the spread was deep and rewarding for you. Whenever “bad” cards come up, I always look for solutions too. It’s better than giving into despair! 🙂

    • Brenda Thu - Nov 04th 2010 8:44 am

      thank Joanna

  • Artemisia Fri - Nov 01st 2013 12:20 am

    Beautiful spread, Joanna! Thank you. I am always called by the Elder of Fire card so it was perfect to have her as my guide for this reading.
    OFFERING – Ace of Earth – By releasing the past, I can re-birth myself into innocence and trust. It would seem I need to place the old me on my ancestor altar this year.
    CHALLENGE – Nine of Fire – I am reminded to be more dedicated to my qi gong practice, to allow myself to go deeper into it and to drink from source.
    CENTER – Guardian of Fire – My power is my willingness to believe in something more when I am most in the dark, when I am suffocated by grief, when the way seems lost. Phoenix flies in here as a symbol of this power to regenerate.
    OPENING – Elder of Water – As I move backwards into what lies ahead, I am moving into joy and beauty, energy, serenity and mystery.
    WISDOM – Ten of Earth – There is so much more to do, to explore, to experience and explore, whisper the ancestors, one of which is me. As I do this, Gaia will hold me safe to her bosom; she beckons me forward and opens the way.
    This reading holds the energy of fire and adds up to XIX The Sun. It speaks of elder wisdom and new beginnings. It honors the phoenix and the spark within. As I move into this new year, I am supported by Earth and given vision by Water. I am learning to be old and new at the same time. I am the spark in my own dark.