Christmas Present

Estimated Reading Time: 6 minutes

Welcome to the Tarot Blog Hop!

An international group of tarotists are all writing on the same topic and then linking to each other so that the reader can hop from one blog to the next, seeing all the permutations and facets that the topic inspired in different writers. You can leave my blog and hop back to Tarot in the Land of Mystereum by Jordan Hoggard. Or read ahead here and then hop forward!

Christmas Present

Our charge this Blog Hop is to address the idea of Christmas Present, however we may interpret that. When I hear that phrase I think of Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol. In this story a man brings about a great personal change through taking a clear look at his past and likely future. By placing his present in this perspective, he is motivated to institute immediate changes in order rectify a dismal future.

The present of course is the only time we can make changes in our lives. If we say next week, next month, next year, we increase the chances that we’ll never start our changes. That said, it can be nice to allow the symbolism of  cycles to inform and reinforce our intentions. Many people like to set New Year resolutions on January 1 because the changing of the annual calendar provides a blank slate. Likewise, people who like to work with natural cycles might find their blank slate at the time of the winter solstice, the longest night of the year and the time of greatest darkness. The sunrise at this time more than ever promises that all cycles end and are renewed.

Today is the day to say to ourselves,

This is as dark as it gets and it will get no darker. I accept the promise of the sunrise as a commitment to growth, improvement and enlightenment.”

Christmas Present is the idea that we see each present moment in our lives as Christmas Present–the dawn of the solstice, the perspective of past, present and future. What would it be like to bring a sense of Christmas Present to every day of the year? To see the end of the world in every long night, and the dawn of a vast new cycle with every sunrise? To know that every outbreath is our last, and every breath in is our promise and commitment to creating the best possible future for ourselves?

Unwrapping Your Christmas Present Tarot Spread

This tarot spread helps you place the present moment in a context of nested cycles so that you can discover how an immediate change in this moment, your Christmas Present, can help create transformation that ripples out throughout the larger concerns of your life. Ask a question to focus in on a particular issue or let the cards unfold naturally to find how to change lifelong, or even karmic, cycles.

  1. The End of the Mayan Calendar. This represents your largest cycle. It is the ribbon around your Christmas Present. It is a cycle that has shaped your overall outlook on life and will address long-term unresolved issues that you are ready to resolve. The issues represented here are likely to be ingrained subconsciously and might take some contemplation to see clearly.
  2. Start of a New Age. This is the future that will result from resolving this largest cycle or the optimism that you can carry forward as a new life philosophy. If you ask a question, you can give greater focus to the reading and it will be clearer what the time frame of each cycle is. However, if you choose not to ask a question, cards 1 and 2 will most likely represent either the big picture cycle of whatever is most dominant on your mind now, the cycle of your full life span, or even a karmic cycle that you are still playing out.
  3. Darkest Night. This is the middle cycle. It can represent a several year cycle, a single year, or a shorter time depending on the time frame of the question. It is the wrapping paper around your Christmas Present. This card represents the immediate problem or issue as you are conscious of it playing out in your life currently.
  4. Dawn of a New Year. This is the change that will take place on the conscious level and that will most likely be seen clearly outside of you as a resolution of your real-world problems.
  5. Release the Out Breath. This is the shortest cycle, the moment of immediacy. This is the box your Christmas Present is in. You might not have control over this moment–breathing is a autonomic function–but you can bring awareness and acceptance to that moment, and that is the key to changing your life.
  6. Accept the In Breath. This is the perspective change of your acceptance of the perfection of every moment of your life. Cards 5 and 6 show the very smallest and most immediate cycle. By recognizing that change can only be made in the immediate moment, by accepting the beauty, peace, perfection and newness of every breath, can we create a positive future.
  7. Your Christmas Present. This card addresses either the tarot’s perspective of your current situation or a call to action that is simple, easy, and capable of being taken at this moment. Shifting to this perspective or taking this action will set the entire spread in motion, allowing the outcomes of each cycle to play out for the highest good of all.

“Wow, I got some difficult cards in my present or future. What do I do?” This is one of the greatest fears surrounding tarot readings and can trip up even the most advanced reader (second only to getting all court cards 😉 ) I have seen time and again people in classes and workshops with me pull a challenging card and then want to bail on the reading, with excuses like they weren’t focused, they didn’t shuffle right, they’re not feeling well, etc. However, when we really spent some time with these cards, each and every time we found a beautiful gift within it, once the fear was stripped away. Accept your difficult cards as deep revelations, be calm and approach them with compassion for yourself, and honestly and fearlessly accept the life-changing insight offered by the card.

Your Next Stop

Hop off my blog and onto Claire-Marie Le Normand’s Beauty, History Magic (please note that this site features images from Claire-Marie’s Vintage Erotica Tarot, Le Tarot des Femmes Erotiques, which contains nudity) or visit the master list of all the blogs.

Joy Vernon is a Certified Professional Tarot Reader and Reiki Teacher in Denver, Colorado. Her specialty is the Empyrean Key Transformational Guidance, which combines energetic and esoteric modalities to help her clients break through blocks and align themselves with their higher purpose. For information on upcoming classes or to schedule an appointment, please visit

© 2012 by Joy Vernon. All rights reserved.

Joy Vernon
Joy Vernon

Joy Vernon is widely recognized as an expert tarot teacher and respected community leader. With over twenty-five years’ experience teaching energetic and esoteric modalities, Joy brings expertise and practiced familiarity to her specialty of esoteric tarot, which layers astrological and qabalistic symbolism onto the traditional tarot structure. Under her leadership, the Denver Tarot Meetup grew into one of the largest and most active tarot-specific meetups in the world. Now Joy runs the Greater Seattle Tarot Meetup. Joy works as a tarot reader, astrologer, and teacher in Burien, Washington. To learn more, please visit

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  1. Awesome spread, Joy! Tried it out with my Legacy of the Divine Tarot from Ciro Marchetti and got amazing results. And like you said, take those challenging cards in stride. My 7th card was the Knight of Swords. Let’s Go!
    In numerical order, they ran like this:
    No specific question. I really like your movement from long time spans to shorter ones in the positions. Very interesting.

    • Your Magician-Four of Swords for out-breath, in-breath, is interesting. The Four of Swords for accepting the in-breath, which is the present moment, is the most relaxed and non-doing of the cards–everything else seems very, as you say, “let’s go!” It reminds me of the Taoist concept of wu wei, not doing or effortless effort. To me, it says that when I stop trying, I move ahead quickly and easily. I might even venture to put that in context of the 3 Pents/3 Cups karmic cycle and suggest that you’re already doing the work you’re meant to do, now is the beginning of accepting the pleasure that results from that work. How did you interpret it?

  2. Great spread – really interesting positional values, Joy! I love doing the blog hop, there are always such wonderful spreads and information – thank you Joy!
    Have a lovely Christmas!
    Ali x

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