This is Wendy here. I know it’s been a while since we made the video, but I wanted to do a short post about this as I have gotten some questions about the Tarot spread in the “First Stone” video shoot.
At the end of the shoot at my house (by Phillip Vielma), I decided to pull some Tarot cards. I laid out a spread previously of 3 major arcana from the Rider Waite Smith deck for the album photoshoot with Scott Reategui Richards, but I handpicked the cards specifically for the shoot at the time…The Magician, The High Priestess, and The Chariot. They conveyed the ideas of magic and alchemy, female intuition, and power with a clear destination that I felt represented the record. This time, it was spontaneous. I wanted to include some of this esoteric imagery in the video as well. I asked the cards to say what they wanted, and I laid out a traditional Celtic Cross spread. For some reason, I felt compelled to keep pulling cards, and I laid out an additional 4 cards on the right.
I was a bit taken aback by what I saw, and honestly felt some fear. This was a very heavy spread and I wasn’t quite sure what it was about yet. I have never, in all my time of either getting or giving readings, seen this many swords in a spread before. Just to put it in perspective, of the 78 cards in the deck, 14 are swords. I did a 14 card spread (pulling from the full deck), and 10 of the cards were swords.
In traditional tarot symbology, swords represent air – thoughts and/or ideas and intellect without emotion. They are also known to be the most difficult…heavy, dangerous, painful, representing conflict (internal or external) or even war. All this of course depends upon the surrounding cards, but when most of them are also swords, the blow of their meaning is not softened much.
At first I thought it was about some type of conflict within the band that I may not have even been aware of, which of course I didn’t want. Then as I sat and let the cards sink in and tried to separate myself from attachment to their meaning, I realized that the cards were about the song. The video captures these moments of me sitting in contemplation. I was thinking and trying to absorb the story I was seeing unfold in front of me.
This is what I saw:
A woman’s (because I relate to the idea of a woman, of course, and the song is written about a woman) heart has been broken and/or she has been betrayed. She tried to take the proper steps to tell her side of the story, but there was a swift rush to judgement, and there was nothing she could do about it but wait. A final decision is to be made, and the Emperor and Queen stabbed her in the back with a death sentence. She is defeated. She tries one last time to make an appeal, but she is tied and blindfolded, “condemned to die for the flame of her desire,” so the song goes.
Check out the video in its entirety below. Cheers!
Photo of Wendy by Esau Gutierrez