The Tick-Tock Effect

There are good reasons why unraveling the gnarly strands of human interaction  is such a long-running drama in the repertoire of divination. In the vision of an ideal world, we almost always see the best-case relationship as two individuals revolving around a common goal in perfectly concentric orbits, moving at the same speed in the same direction in exquisite two-part harmony. This is the classic 2 of Cups “new love” scenario, and it invites the cynical response “Yeah, right” from those of us who have been down that road before (usually more than once). In most interpersonal situations, it is too much to ask of complex personalities to keep the mutual euphoria going over the long haul as day-to-day reality sets in and takes its mundane toll. While the orbits may start out in seamless congruity, it isn’t long before entropy (“gradual decline into disorder”) sets in and one (or both) of the trajectories becomes wobbly. I liken the experience to the dwindling arc of a pendulum in motion, the inevitable teetering of a child’s top or the winding-down of a mechanical clock; what starts out purring along like a jeweled Swiss movement sooner or later succumbs to friction as the parts wear out and, without timely remediation or retooling, things eventually miss a step, stumble and grind to a halt. As a nightclub pick-up line, “I’ll still love you in the morning” has an alluring ring to it, but Rod Stewart put it more succinctly in the salacious Faces rock song “Stay With Me,” singing “Sit down, get up, get out” right after beguiling his prey with “Let’s go upstairs and read my tarot cards.”  I had this to say about it in a previous post:

“There is an exhilaration in the intense urge to match speeds (or at least “parts”) with another person and create harmony that imparts excitement to a relationship. As long as a certain amount of unpredictability prevails, things remain fresh. When the “clock winds down,” boredom can set in and the pendulum may get stuck at the far end of its travel; the “hands come off the clock” and one partner either emotionally or physically drops out of the picture. I call it the ‘tick-tock effect’ of human disenchantment.”

Constructive intervention is where the tarot comes into play. Over the last few years I’ve created a number of unique spreads to tackle the subject, running the gamut from chance encounters (“one-night-stands”) to long-term relationships that have lapsed into dysfunction. Some of them are aimed at multi-party scenarios, whether “love triangles,” in-law interference or professional discord, and at least one examines the prospects of getting back together with an “ex.” You can find them under the drop-down menu item “Relationship Spreads” on my homepage.

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