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Friday, August 4, 2017

Listen to the Animals: Cicada

For this Tarot Notes feature, I pull one card from an animal-themed deck to represent an important message from that animal.

If you are interested in finding out who your own Animal Guides are, you can get an Animal Guides Reading through my _Etsy shop_ or my _Web Site_.

The other day, when I stepped onto the back deck of my house, I nearly stepped on (or tripped over) a very large bug (photo below). I did not know what it was. Honestly, I love animals, but this very large bug gave me a most unpleasant sensation in my stomach and I froze in place. I was actually *afraid* it might be alive and would fly up into my face. Cautiously, I made my way around it and soon confirmed that it was no longer living. (I am sorry, dear bug, but this filled me with relief.)

Anyway, I found out that this was a cicada, specifically Neotibicen superbus, aka the Superb Cicada (or Superb Dog-Day Cicada). I am familiar with cicadas because of the shrill, loud “singing” (from the males) that I have heard all my life – but I had never seen one and didn’t realize how big they are (1-2 inches long for most species). Lordy.

Once I recovered from the incident, I was pretty sure I remembered the cicada being included in The Animal-Wise Tarot by Ted Andrews (Dragonhawk Publishing). Indeed, it is there, portraying the role of the Six of Shapeshifters (Cups) with the key phrase “Happiness from the Past.”

Let’s see what else we can learn from the cicada.

Ted Andrews describes this bug as a “fairly large” (an understatement, IMHO, but Ted may have encountered way huger insects than I have…), sap-sucking insect” that feeds “mainly upon trees.” Cicadas lay their eggs in soil, and the nymphs remain underground for several years (17 years for one American cicada).

Andrews tells us that an increase in attraction to and from the opposite sex is one of the things we might expect when we encounter the cicada (nothing in that area from me so far), but we may also have past-life experiences or begin to realize the effects people and situations of the past have had on our present.

Reversed, the card can represent a delay in the “hatching” of something and the need for patience (remember that 17-year underground stage).

Like all insects, the cicada calls our attention to the importance of change, whether it is the need to change or a caution against trying to rush change.


  1. These bugs sing away on summer evenings in Oz. You hardly ever get to see one.

    Nice to think they represent past hapiness, they certainly sound happy singing away. ^_^

    1. They really do put on a concert, don't they? From now on, their singing will prompt me to revisit a moment of happiness from the past in my mind.


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