I'd never heard of these at all, though of course the concept of alchemy is familiar to me from Jung's writings, and the Thoth Tarot in particular. Helen used a seven stone reading from the companion book, based on the alchemical process. Altogether, it was a novel and interesting reading. One thing in particular struck me, though, because it's something I've been thinking about quite a lot recently.
For the Outcome position Helen drew the Philosophic Mercury stone. She said: "Philosophic Mercury represents the soft and subtle feminine principle associated with beauty, grace, gentleness, creativity, receptivity, nurturing, reflection, the subconscious mind and intuition." Getting past the fact that this sounds like the High Priestess though I normally associate Mercury with rather more dynamic, communicative characteristics, it highlights an issue I've been having.
Working as a counsellor, I don't feel particularly creative. I enjoy the work, but it doesn't fulfil that side of me in the way that, for example, designing a tarot spread for a client does. I acknowledge that this may in part be because I don't yet have enough skills and practice to bring creativity into it. However, I also worry that it may be the nature of the beast - counselling has quite a passive element to it as it is much more about listening than about saying or doing.
For the moment I have this blog, among other things, to satisfy my desire to create. And I can imagine in the future finding fulfillment in teaching. What Helen's reading pointed to, though, is that I perhaps need to focus more on those qualities in my counselling work, if I want to do it well. How can I be creative within a session, as well as receptive and nurturing and reflective? Finding the answer to that may help me feel more joyful in this work.
I am grateful for the generosity of readings and insights shared.