The Continuing Crisis

Written By: Charles - Dec• 18•21

Samain and the Winter Solstice Moon

Saturday gratefuls: The Blues shabbat. Kate. Alan. Jamie. Luke. Orgovyx by Fedex. The assistance fund. Prostate cancer. Artificial knee. The lenses in my eyes from cataract surgery. That mended Achilles tendon. My paralyzed diaphragm, left side. Medicine. Zoom. Ruby with a full tank of gas. Cold weather. Snowpack numbers up.

Sparks of Joy and Awe: Conflict. Creative tension.

Tarot: ?What do I need to get the most out of this weekend?

Ace of Vessels: The Waters of Life. King of Stones: Wolf. Nine of vessels: Generosity.


3 generations of our family

A three card spread asking the question above occupies most of this post. It’s below. The focus is on Jon and his continuing crisis. Once again the cards evoke archetypal energies, caused reflection at a deep level, and remind all of us involved, Jon and the Johnson sisters and me, to be aware of emotional traps.

Blues Shabbat last night at CBE. I zoomed since it started at 7:30 pm and my chariot transforms to pumpkinhood around 8 pm. Makes attendance at Friday shabbat services a challenge for me. Rabbi Jamie wrote a couple of blues songs and wrote new lyrics to old standards like Stormy Weather. The CBE band had a keyboardist/vocalist, a backup singer, harmonica, drums, and lead guitar.

I appreciated the effort, but the sound on my laptop and the difficulty of getting good sound from the sanctuary to those of us online made listening difficult. I also wish the blues had been more reflective of Jews’ long struggle for safety and community. A little too upbeat for me. But the online crowd loved the show.

Had lunch with Alan. He’s in between eyeballs with cataract surgery. And wondering if some changes are permanent. We’ll find out. I always leave lunch with Alan smiling.

At the shiva for Kate he told me, “It’s going to be my job to get you out of the house.” He’s been true to his word. His kindness and consistency since then has helped me. A lot.

Got in my workout. A new practice now. I look at the day either the night before or the morning of and choose a time during the day for exercise. It has worked so far. When I had a rigid schedule, which I preferred, at least until now, I would be negative when I missed a day. And, I missed some, sometimes a whole week, like last week. I don’t want the negative so I’m going to try some flexibility and being good with what I can get in. My goal is 300 minutes a week. Satisfied with 240. OK with getting some exercise in a tough week no matter the minutes.

Today and tomorrow are study days in addition to family and Ancient Brothers time. Looking forward to it all.


The Path to a good weekend:


Ace of Vessels. Vessels go with the elemental water. Water in the Tarot is emotions. This ace of vessels reminds me that I need to avoid extreme emotions, remain balanced in my response. An important reminder since I have a meal with Jon and the kids at 3:15. And, on Sunday, the Johnson sisters and I zoom with Jon to talk about his financial crisis and how to help him through it. Balanced emotions, clear expression of them, will be key for Jon to get what he needs and for us to do what we can without enabling him. No to enmeshment, co-dependence. Yes to chesed.


King of Stones Stones are with the elemental earth. Earth is the practical, the this-worldly, the reality we can touch and feel. The Wolf is leader of the pack, one who protects, defends, and disciplines. Jon’s crisis calls for protection and defense of him and of the grandkids. We, his family, can do that best by a conservative approach with money, a generous approach with kindness and love. Our response, and his, must be practical, helpful, and timely. The Wolf also reminds us that each of us must make our own way in the Wildwood, but that we can’t do that alone.


Nine of Vessels As the pip cards increase in number so do their expression of the key aspects of their suit. Our emotional response to this weekend must be generous. Kind. Protective. We must all guide ourselves and our emotional response with generosity. Not sure what that generosity looks like in action. TBD. But the nine of vessels in this position means it is the action most needed for a good weekend.

Overall  Jon’s situation will bring us closer together as a family. Potentially. If we avoid blaming, anger, disappointment, and yet insist on accountability, responsibility then we can avoid the emotional traps inherent in this kind of discussion. What comes needs to have clarity for Jon and for the family. It needs to give him support and protect the health of the pack, the family. These may be in conflict and will require careful, honest, open conversation. But. If we proceed from a position of generosity of spirit, generosity of attention, and generosity of resources, then all of us can come away from this weekend feeling good about our family and ourselves.






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