I have announced that I would only use this space for its original "updates" function; and I am stretching that a bit, lately, taking the opportunity to comment, as well. Still, I want to share something. What may be my last piece of evidence, a microfilm of the complete run of an old newspaper that Mathew Franklin Whittier published in, is at the scanning company, and I should have the scans within a week or two.
In the meantime, I purchased medium Matthew Fraser's book, "The Secrets to Unlocking Your Psychic Ability," because I felt Abby, my wife in the astral, with whom I'm trying to communicate more clearly, prompted me that it was a good source, i.e., that his motives are clean and he is genuine. It's very elementary; but I only hoped to pick up one or two crucial tips. I'm not quite finished reading it.
But I'm trying to do the exercises, and one of them is to practice a bit with a Tarot deck, to sharpen my intuition. I bought the classic "Rider" deck, and using the accompanying instruction manual, tried a reading first of Abby--i.e., as she was in the 19th century; and then one of myself in that era, when I was Mathew. They seemed quite on-target, though Abby's was more as she would see herself then, rather than as I would have seen her. Which is to say, her family was from exiled aristocracy, and had probably been quite wealthy, originally, in France, before they were forced to Guadeloupe, and then, to America. So that came up more strongly in the reading than if I had been describing what she meant to Mathew.
This thing seems to work--and I do know the reductionistic explanation, that it is vague and suggestive enough that it could be interpreted any way you like. But there seems to be more to it than that. It would be like someone who didn't believe televisions work. You are in a far country, and you find electricity and you plug it in, and you make a tall antenna. There is mostly just snow, but there is just a little of one station coming in, with some voices, a snatch of music, and briefly, a scene with people moving about. Your skeptical friend says, "It's so vague, you could imagine anything you want to in it." And he would be correct, except that it's just a little too specific for that.
That is how the Tarot cards strike me, being admittedly a rank amateur going strictly and literally by-the-book.
So I decided, or I felt prompted by Abby (I can't always tell which it is), to do a reading on my book project, "Mathew Franklin Whittier in his own words." It's quite on-target, and I thought I'd share it--though I don't like the conclusion, much. I have to try to condense this, and I'm writing, potentially, to people who know the Tarot well, and to people who have never looked into it, at all. Again, I'm going to go strictly by-the-book.
The instructions tell you how to lay them out. Meanwhile, Abby is with me in spirit, as I shuffle them one more time. I don't know whether an astral helper is required for this thing, and whether that person can alter the position of the cards as you shuffle. Frankly, that explanation (given I am not a Materialist), would accord with Occam's Razor better than any other I can think of. I do know that astral persons can do things like this.
So the first card you lay down is the "Significator," the "person or thing about whom or which the inquiry is made." Here, that card is the Eight of Cups, the significance of which is said to be self-explanatory. Therefore, I will have to show an image of it.
The description says, "A man of dejected aspect is deserting the cups of his felicity, enterprise, undertaking or previous concern."
In other words, I suppose, my disappointment and frustration at no-one taking me seriously; the feeling that it is a failure.
They don't call the "Significator" the first card, even though it is the first card. (Kind of like floors in an apartment in England?) Next comes what the instructions call the "first card," which "covers him" (or it); the person or thing's general environment at the time, the "influence with which he is actuated all through." The card I pulled is the Nine of Cups: Concord, contentment, physical bien etre; also victory, success, advantage, satisfaction for the Querent..." This reflects, as I suppose, the fact that I am deeply satisfied with the results of my study. I know it was a success, even if at this point, no-one else will give me the time of day.
The second card is laid across the first card horizontally, and represents obstacles. Here, I pulled the Four of Pentacles, which shows a self-satisfied king hoarding his pentacles, and the explanation reads: "The surety of possessions, cleaving to that which one has, gifts, legacy, inheritance." I suppose this would relate to my claiming and reclaiming my past-life legacy (including, in some cases, literally buying portions of it off Ebay). I am not entirely clear how this urge to reclaim Mathew's legacy would be an obstacle, but then, if it is, it would naturally be something I'm not fully aware of, yet. Perhaps it made the book too long and involved; or perhaps people sense my resentment at those who stole it from Mathew, and it is off-putting. Personally, I feel it's something I needed to do, and I feel great satisfaction in it; plus, I think it's fascinating, given that some of these thefts put the thief on the map. Perhaps those claims are what kill my credibility; but once taken seriously, they will help put this work on the map. Perhaps the point is that they have become an obstacle now.
The third card is placed above the others, and represents one's ideal: the best that one can arrive at, but which is "not his own at present." I pulled the Ten of Cups, the explanation for which reads: "Contentment, repose of the entire heart--the perfection of that state..." Pretty general, but on-target nonetheless.
The fourth card is placed beneath, and is said to signify "that which he has to work with and can use." Now, when I got to this one (after I had pulled and placed them all), I thought to myself, "This has the potential to be evidential, meaning, it could potentially be way off-target; because I know very well what I have to work with, both in this life and what skills and knowledge I acquired as Mathew Franklin Whittier." The card I had pulled was the Nine of Wands, the explanation of which reads: "...strength in opposition. If attacked, he will meet the onslaught boldly." I could here recite several poems and letters of Mathew's which would convince you that it is directly on-point for him; but perhaps you can sense something of my own personality in this regard, as well. I won't tarry here--it's self-evident. Definitely, and demonstrably, this trait is something I have under my belt from past lives.*
The fifth card, being placed to the side, is "...the current from which he is passing away, and it may be the past of the matter." Here again, I noted the evidential potential. I know very well "from which I am passing away," my past--would the card reflect it accurately? I had pulled the Page of Pentacles: "Application, study, scholarship, reflection." Once again, I could site numerous references to show that Mathew Franklin Whittier was a deep, wide-ranging, life-long scholar, including a study of the philosophers and myths of ancient Greece, metaphysics, the occult, and other subjects. I am currently reading a book entitled "The Night Side of Nature," published 1848, which he appears to have read, full of authenticated paranormal accounts. This card was not only accurate, it was blazingly accurate.
I see, on re-read, that I neglected to cite the sixth card, which is placed to the opposite side and which deals with the immediate future, "the current that is coming into action and will operate in the specific matter." I've already shuffled the deck, but going through them, I remember which ones I have pulled recently (several from this last reading were still together in the middle of the deck, not having been shuffled well). Unless it was part of the earlier two readings, I think it was the Page of Cups: "Fair young man, one impelled to render service and with whom the Querent will be connected, a studious youth, news, message, application, reflection, meditation--also these things directed to business." If this is the right card, it suggests to me that I will, actually, take this book, and my case, on the road; or at least, to the public. It may also indicate someone destined to assist me in promotions.**
Now there are four auxilliary cards, placed in a vertical row to the side, 7-10, in ascending order. The seventh card signifies "...himself, his attitude and relation to the matter." I pulled The Emperor: "Stability, power, aid, protection, a great person, conviction, reason." Remember, this is my own attitude. It, too, is right on-target, as any regular readers can attest to (whether it puts them off, or not).
The eighth card is "...his house, his environment in the affair--the influence, people and events about him." You know, of course, that this is a joint project between myself, and my soul-mate in the astral realm, Abby--who was also Mathew's first wife. It is just us two, working together to complete this--she nudges me with ideas, and somehow brings historical evidence within my orbit (some truly amazing things, over the last seven years). The card I pulled is The Lovers.
The ninth card "signifies his hopes and fears." I pulled the Two of Pentacles, a truly enigmatic one. I'll reproduce it below, as well. Here is the description: "...a card of gaiety, recreation and its connections, which is the subject of the design. But it is read also as news and messages in writing, such as obstacles, agitation, trouble, embroilment." I may be stretching, but it seems to me that this project is like a hobby; but it is also a hobby in which I am stirring up trouble, by attacking philosophical Materialism at its very root, through writing. I have hopes to educate Society; I have fears that I will offend the wrong people, should I ever become publicly known.
The last and tenth card, is "what will come," the future. This one threw me for a loop. I had pulled the Seven of Cups: "Fairy favors, images of reflection, imagination, sentiment, things seen in the glass of contemplation, some attainment in these degrees but nothing permanent or substantial is suggested." I would have to interpret that my book might raise some eyebrows, but it won't convince anyone nor have any lasting impact on Society. At best it may make people think.
Well, that is not the outcome I would want; but it is probably the most likely one, assuming the book is ever embraced by the public and doesn't simply die with me. But, you know, even the best cases for the existence of the Other World are like this--19th century medium Daniel Dunglass Home, modern medium John Edward on "Crossing Over," the Leininger reincarnation case--all of them. They flash on the screen of collective consciousness, and then people go back to their everyday material lives.
But I will know what Abby and I accomplished, nonetheless.
Stephen Sakellarios, M.S.
*For example, Mathew was a member in good standing of the Pnyxian Club, the premier debate club in Portland, Maine, in the early 1840's.
**Several researchers, and two in particular, have been a tremendous help in the research phase, but they aren't any more astute about business and distribution than I am.
Music opening this page: "The Great Beyond," by REM, from the film "Man on the Moon"