Samhain Blog Hop | Behind The Mask

Published by Alison Cross on

Welcome to the Samhain/Hallowe’en blog hop and to my Court Card blog.  Many thanks to my next-door neighbours for this blog hop, Kerry and Ania, for linking through to me.  If you haven’t read their blogs for this hop, visit their sites via the links on my page and have fun hopping on to the other blogs taking part.

This time we are blogging about our MASKS.

When I was growing up here in Scotland, the most exciting part of Hallowe’en was getting your False Face.

These masks bore no resemblance to the stunning Tarot mask pictured here (it’s $300 btw!), but these ones were purchased from toy shops and newsagents and were made of pre-pressed cardboard or plastic with a slender elastic thread to hold it in place.  There were eye holes, nose holes and sometimes a mouth hole.

The mouth hole was a killer in the plastic masks though because the edges were wickedly sharp and most of us tried sticking our tongues through the mouth hole – accidentally adding a touch of bloodied realism to the overall look!

Back then, I wore a mask to pretend I was someone else.  Now that I am grown, I wear masks for other reasons: to disguise myself and to protect myself.

And yes, sometimes to pretend I’m a pirate πŸ™‚

I think that we all still wear masks to pretend to be other people.  Not SPECIFIC other people. Not signing cheques as Marilyn Monroe. That would be bat-shit crazy. And result in some kind of restraining order.

But sometimes I disguise myself as someone else in order to empower myself in some situations – and here’s a Tarot spread, utilising……. Court Cards!

This is a bastardised, Tarot version of those ‘What Would Jesus Madonna Amanda Palmer Do?’ bracelets!  Today I’m using the Fey Tarot (published by Lo Scarabeo).


You may recognise that you revert to a sulky Knight of Swords in the face of your mother’s martyred Queen of Cups ploy to get her own way?  You just can’t seem to stop yourself.  Or is that just me?!

This exercise helps me focus on my perception of the problem and also helps me harness the energies that I desire to embody.

Find a Court card that represents You (representing the mask you currently wear with your mother on the issue in hand).   This one represents me – combative,  moody and (frankly) immature!

Then pick out the Court Card that you would like to be – perhaps the self-confidence of the Queen of Wands might be useful to you?  Or the practicality or gravitas of the King of Pentacles?  Or perhaps you’ll opt to choose your ‘masks’ using the elements – who would be a good foil for the Water of Water that is the Queen of Cups…. perhaps Earth of Earth – the Page of Pentacles?

Lay them out side by side, but with space between them.  You can now pick two random cards from the rest of your deck to lay between your two courts.  These will help you move from your current mask (on the left of your spread) to your desired mask (on the right of your spread).  You can give them positional values if that helps with the interpretation of them:  I tend to use variations of ‘Helpful Energy’ and ‘Unhelpful Energy’.
Ah look, the Tarot is playing tricks on me today!  The two cards that are supposed to help me move from the Knight of Swords to the Queen of Wands are these.  How can two Swords help me get away from the Knight of Swords nonsense?!

When I look at the 9 Swords, I see a whole load of self-obsessed angst.  This is the Unhelpful energy. I could do with shedding that, for sure.  My mother’s opinion of me ought not to be like the Sword of Damocles.  Sure, it would be NICE to have her approval, but why should I get myself in knots (or on my knees as the Fey is here) just because she disapproves.  Get over it and get on with it.  Look at those stars and the stairway that lie just in front of you! 
The 7 of Swords shows a fey in the act of disguise – she is transparent, almost invisible.  The card is telling me that making my usual Knight of Swords belligerence (and yes, I’ll admit that much lol!) invisible will be helpful in harnessing that Queen of Wands self confidence.
Even by being consciously AWARE of the masks at play, just by completing this exercise, things might be different the next time I butt heads with my mother!
I hope that you’ll give this exercise an outing the next time you feel that you need a change of mask.  I’d love to know how it works out for you!
Tarot Thrones - visit the blog post before me…..and if you want to know about Masks for Protection, well, why don’t you book-mark my blog and give it a visit at the end of the week? That’s what my next blog post will be allllll about!

Alison Cross

The Tarot's Court Cards are my specialist area.Β  They talk to me. Not LITERALLY though ....


Carolyn · 1st November 2012 at 3:17 pm

What I remember about our plastic masks is how sweaty they would become from our warm breath getting trapped in the plastic!

This is a great process that I could apply right to my own work with my mom. Thank you!

Christiane · 1st November 2012 at 10:05 am

Interesting spread! Using court cards as masks is very innovative…looking forward to your next post πŸ˜‰

Koneta · 1st November 2012 at 12:58 am

This sounds all too familiar…(me and my mother). Looking forward to the next installment, as always. πŸ™‚

Alison · 31st October 2012 at 3:18 pm

Can't wait to try this spread! and what a beautiful, beautiful mask…

Vivianne · 31st October 2012 at 1:24 pm

Love that spread πŸ™‚ Though I don't see the KnoS as moody, that's his cousin the KnoCups πŸ™‚

Jordan · 31st October 2012 at 3:09 am

Well, hell! I can use some Ye Olde humor in my Higher Self Court in my Shadow World. Thanks for the fun and insightful blog, Alison. I full-on dig the mask-to-mask movement cards as the magical twilight of the space between the 2 cards. Thanks.

John Marani · 31st October 2012 at 12:51 am

Fantastic post! I really liked your use of the "mask" here. And the spread sounds fantastic! πŸ™‚

Tarot By Arwen · 30th October 2012 at 11:13 pm

Oh tricksy tricksy Tarot! What a great post! Must try this spread.

Neopagan Priestess · 30th October 2012 at 9:22 pm

Gotta love that swords energy – putting your mind to the task of being less swordsy. Will look forward to the next installment, too πŸ™‚

Inner Whispers · 30th October 2012 at 9:18 pm

What an excellent idea, Ali! I can imagine this spread being helpful in all manner of situations, as we have to put on different masks for different jobs/people…

And what a tease: I'll definitely be back for the Masks of Protection post!

Ania · 30th October 2012 at 9:16 pm

You mean you want to charge at your mother with drawn sword? πŸ™‚

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