Competition for my attention has been such that I have not been able to write as frequently as I wish, but once per annum I do like to do a forecast of a major theme and minor themes that my tarot cards indicate will be prominent in the ensuing year. The world is such a vast place that I can only presume that the predictions are primarily relevant to who may read the contents and I am certain that events are skewed by an Anglo-American bias or relevance to readers in North America and Western Europe as they, and expats from those areas, who constitute the lion’s share of the readership. I have attempted to mitigate this emphasis as there are readers in upwards of 60 countries that visit this website each year.
2012 was, in my predictions, experience, and observation, “The Year of the Opiates” whereby there was optimistic spin in the media to keep attention directed at economic recovery and preventing any comprehensive regime change from occurring in the face of serious unrest in the Middle East – essentially a systematic effort of preventing contagion or disruption of the status quo in developed countries. 2013 was “The Year of Deconstruction” where norms were upended and corruption had fewer and fewer places to hide. The way I have summed up 2013 is that it is like a Berlin Wall is falling down every day. Many would argue that there was a palpable shift sometime around 2000 to 2001 that ushered in an unsettled period that has never really gone away, but by 2013 this has become normalized and yet were just beginning to understand the full nature of how we are all implicated and impacted.
I will re-use some of the questions from 2013, but one of them, “Are our assets safe?” does not seem to be a front page question this year. I can’t say I had a premonition about the banking situation in Cyprus, but I have been aware that raiding of accounts is a matter at hand. For 2014, I am concerned about actual or simulated cyber attacks being staged against accounts and will ask the relevance of this question.
As always, I say a prayer and ask for benevolent thoughts and influences as the preface to my queries. My primary aim is more refined now in that I want people to be able to navigate globalization and to optimize their local situation in the most seamless way possible, avoiding turbulence primarily coming from asset-stripping mechanisms our current economies foster.
What is the overall, prevailing experience many people in the world will have this year?
PAST, PRESENT: Both Justice and The Fool are reversed in this stage of our query. We are in a very litigious mindset coming into 2014. There are not quick solutions to moral or legislative issues and there will be a lot of conclusions arrived at, then reversed, then analyzed again. People are not too sure of what they actually believe. Many more people are capable of thinking in terms of moral relativism (I do not claim to know that topic inside and out but that is a term that sprung to mind). Furthermore, the opposite force at work here is that people are trying to maintain a sense of normality that they have known during the entire Post-War period from 1945, but it continues to buckle under the pressure of spiritual interests.
The second factor at the present is people noting the absurdity of their life situation. Some interpretations of The Fool in reverse take it as a warning against enticing offers, and this is a persistent threat in life, but I am pulling a feeling of farce. Many more people at the moment are questioning “How did I get here? Why am I doing what I’m doing? Everything that happens is a constructed reality.”
FUTURE/2014: Seven of Pentacles indicates people taking stock of their lives and seeing their achievements. Things are not so bad after all, and many people will realize they have accumulated more than they thought they did in recent years. Pentacles generally indicates work, assets and property, skill, and anything associated with money or success. In the seventh card, one objective is clearer and is obvious by bigger size. This is the year people want to move on and step boldly into the future and have some idea as to what can achieve this. This card is not a passive, lucky card however – it is one where the word is required to back it up. In the coming months, something of a majority of people will see their hard work paying off.
Nine of Cups in reverse comes in to say what the actual results will be for the year, as felt by a “majority” and this warns of gluttony and too much consumption or vanity. Thus, a continuation of a bubble building in many segments of the world population is expected and this is not the year of the next crash (bear in mind I am not referring to the BRICS countries and emerging market countries which have suffered from the US and EU pushing inflation their way). As there is always a counterculture, a large minority of people will be more sensitive to these consumption patterns and will continue to build up their resources in such a way to avoid the next battery of social and economic problems. We may start seeing the return of religious or spiritual cults, which have been relatively quiet since the late 1990s.
2013 was a year marked with violent incidents of a cruel nature, such as the Boston marathon explosions, two incidents in Washington, and the slaying of a soldier in London. Are these events to escalate in 2014? How will violence be curtailed?
FUTURE: The Wheel of Fortune denotes how unpredictable life is and some degree of fatalism in one’s expectations. This card offers the advice of telling people to go about their business and to try to realize that there is a larger picture and meaning to their misfortunes that ultimately contributes to knowledge accumulation and enhanced life experience, even in horrifying circumstances. I will add to this that there is no waste. Dogmatic and fear-based propaganda continues to unravel, hence the wheel. The seeds for real reform are planted but not yet harvested.
The next card seems appropriate, the Page of Pentacles lands to usher in a very powerful combination of youthful exuberance and fiscal success. Youth leadership is stepping up and, as I have said before, the generation that is entering adulthood now is very, very good. The Page of Pentacles has a feathered cap and looks at a large Pentacle, combining wisdom, a plucky spirit, and a firm resolve.
In the context of this question, there will be more incidents of random terrorism, shootings, and so forth, but they are going to weigh less heavily on us because we can see that they are not necessarily evidence of a society in decline. Furthermore, as the youth start to tilt our reality to one more grounded in reasonable tolerance of others and less competition associated with all the “-isms” (nationalism, sexism, ageism, etc.), there is less harassment and violence to be expected in the sum total (in other words, high profile incidents will happen but they do not reflect the consistent decline in violence overall).
Legislation will most likely not be a part of the reduction of violence, it appears to be happening in response to social changes.
What traits or steps to be taken are the most life-enhancing ones particular to 2014 given economic and social changes in the Western world?
FUTURE: For this question, Nine of Swords and Nine of Pentacles appeared. Nine in tarot represents completion as well as beginnings and the triumvirates we know (mind, body, soul, etc.). This is a time to bask in the light of all that is already good. I have always said that wherever you are in the world is never worse than the second best place for you. Again, there is a lot of youthful energy infused into this year and you will see a lot of people giddy with their purchases, counting their blessings, shaking off fear, and letting go of some responsibility to entrust to junior members of groups.
The one persistent thorn of a very big nature that bothers me is the buildup of defense systems in the Pacific. In the last days of 2011, it was announced that the US would be sending thousands of troops to Australia quietly each year for the next five years. Meanwhile, there are frequent references to the “pivot to the Pacific,” and there have been more disputes between South Korea, China, and Japan over territorial waters and islands. I absolutely cannot express unfiltered conjecture here but I advise everyone to think very critically of what they are informed of on this front in the coming years. There will be false representations of what is happening and the parties responsible will not necessarily be who or nations that they are proclaimed to be. Your discernment and objections are of the greatest importance in the safety of others.
Will there be any worldwide conflicts this year that lead to a large-scale war situation?
FUTURE: The Lovers appears in reverse. Harmonious relations are tested and rhetoric is not romantic and cooperative. As it stands now, China and the US could not exist without the other but this is starting to shift as both countries are less dependent on each other. Turf and procedures are being sorted out and neither party is certain how to go about this, not to mention the thousands of industrial players and political factions that do not agree on what is effective.
Six of Swords also appears in reverse. This card depicts a journey by water and this literally means hostile waters in this particular case, which is more than coincidental. It also means that so far in 2014 this is mainly a war of rhetoric rather than actual combat, but the stage is set. There is a lot of obstinance at work from all factions.
Though neither of these cards refer to commerce in any way, invariably people with investments in these territories have to consider long-term disruption. Though there is a strong presence of international trade, there is actually a quiet tilt toward regional or continental trade. Eventually each continent will mostly be self-sufficient through a combination of evolution and necessity with the US, Germany, and China being the main hubs (they actually already are but that has not been recognized yet for political reasons. Russia is the wild card that will eventually operate like a Nordic social democracy).
This a year of strong performance and enhanced self-esteem at the individual level. There is not going to be a feeling of “all our problems are solved” and from the legislative perspective, this is a heavy period of combative back-and-forth disputes, but the people will rise above it and buck centralized power by frequently ignoring it. While personal investments in more environmentally friendly products and practices will continue to move forward, this is more of a year of advancements of the Self. We can laugh at ourselves and yield more power to new players.
See both the positive and negative words associated with “Self-assuredness” at merriam-webster.com