Walking along my favorite stretch of the canal near Dawanglu, I came upon a King of Diamonds lying face up on the path in front of me. Of course I assumed it was meant for me. Through the years I have encountered nearly whole decks discarded on the streets of Beijing, the casualty no doubt of a lost or damaged card in the deck that seemingly warranted scattering the remaining cards to the wind. There are certainly plenty of people playing cards in the city, often gathering huge crowds, in a similar fashion to the Chinese chess matches that get small groups of onlookers very excited on occasion. So, it is not surprising then to encounter single cards, or small groups of cards as fate and the winds may blow them. It occurred to me a few years back when I came across a favorable card that perhaps I could take it as a good omen. Since that time, whenever I chance upon some cards dealt by the hand of fate, I don my divination cap and do a quick interpretation.

The King of Diamonds symbolizes the King of Pentacles, Disks or Coins, depending on your preference. Depending on your school of thought the exact meaning may vary, and one can never remove the context from the situation. As this card just popped up “out of nowhere” I went with a general indicator of the thoughts I hold most regularly and intently in my head. This is usually related to my goals of establishing an Ecovillage in China, the financing and realization of which is one of the primary drivers for my life in Beijing, but could also be related to any of a half dozen projects I’ve got boiling away. The King of Diamonds usually signifies a rich, powerful and successful man, often indicating that someone of that description is going to arrive on the scene. Nice! Maybe a new mentor? An investor?

I walked a bit further and eventually found the Ace of Diamonds, apparent sole surviving kin to the King out of the whole deck. This was a pleasant development, as the Ace represents the beginning of a new profitable venture, often at the culmination of a previous cycle (as the ten becomes a one). Taken with the first card, this appears to be a very good omen. Easy to go along with it when the cards are good! Of course, this isn’t always the case - I have come across a five of coins before, which really pissed me off at the time because I was going through financially tough times at the moment and didn’t wish to be reminded of it. For some reason, I do seem to come a across a lot more good cards though. Regardless of the future they portend, I enjoy passing time with the tarot of happenstance.

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