Do you like card games? Maybe a game of poker is your thing. Or, perhaps a game of patience, to while away lonely hours.
But have you ever thought about what might lie behind a deck of cards? Is there some hidden meaning to be found?
Try to keep an open mind with the following…
In a deck of cards, red and black, could well note day and night. The four suits, they might represent the four seasons.
There are 12 court cards. That is, 4 Kings, 4 Queens, 4 Jacks. They could note the 12 months in a year.
There are thirteen cards in each suit. That might note the 13 lunar cycles in the year.
There are 52 cards in a deck. That could represent the 52 weeks in the year.
If you add all the values of the cards. Ace equals one…Jack 11, Queen 12 and so on, that adds up to 365 (when you include the Joker). The same number as the days in a year.
Perhaps a deck of playing cards is reminding you to look at time? The cycles of the year, the seasons, and the movement of the Earth and moon around the sun…
Or, is it all just a coincidence?
We’ve lost an awareness of the natural cycles of time
Whatever the answer, our modern culture has strayed. In the bustle of modern life, we’ve lost an awareness of the natural cycles of time.
We get so caught up in the miniature details of our lives that the cycles of the sun, moon and the passing of the seasons barely gets our attention.
Rarely, do we take a moment to reflect on our Earth spinning and hurtling around the sun. The awe and wonder of it all.
It doesn’t help that our modern calendar is an artificial construct. The calendar has little to do with the natural cycles of time.
Anyway, here’s something that may have escaped your attention…
In the early hours of tomorrow morning we’ll pass our solstice point. Although for most it will pass with barely a thought.
The solstice, will mark the passing of the shortest day of the year. The day with the least sunlight. From here on, the sun renews once more and the days lengthen a little bit each day.
Though we think nothing of it, this day was an awfully important time of year, to our so called ‘primitive’ ancestors.
As the sun (the giver of life) sank lower in the sky, some might have feared the sun would eventually disappear for good. But after the passing of the winter solstice, the ‘sun’ rises once more.
It was a key date and turning point in the year
For pagan cultures it marked the renewal of life. It was a key date and turning point in the year.
In Celtic Britain there are structures built 5,000 years ago that can focus a ray of light marking the exact timing of the winter solstice. What an outstanding feat that is.
The fact that our so called ‘primitive’ ancestors could calculate and forecast the exact time of the solstice, without any of the aids of modern technology, is extraordinary really.
Ask any of us ‘sophisticated’ moderns to complete such a task and I think most would struggle. And I count myself in that group.
We’ve lost touch with natural cycles. And perhaps a great boon awaits, for those who can rediscover some of this knowledge.
We tend to see time as linear. But our ancestors saw time as cyclical. Cycles within cycles.
Anyway, the winter solstice is just a time you might want to reflect on the year just passed. And also, to set new intentions for the year ahead.
You don’t have to be some sort of closet pagan or sun worshipper to think about the cycles and return of the sun.
It’s just a good feeling to know the sun is returning a little each day. That perhaps there will be some daylight as we go and return from work once more. And that warmer temperatures will soon return.
Although, for a time, about a month or so, the temperatures will still get colder. This is due to a temperature lag. Because, although the days are getting longer and the sun’s intensity is increasing, the ground and oceans are still cooling.
But eventually the sun wins out in this battle and the warmer temperatures return.
What has talk of solstices got to do with practical investing?
Anyway, if I haven’t lost you by now, you might well be asking: ‘What has talk of solstices or any of this got to do with practical investing?’
Well, perhaps more than what you might think…
Just go back and look where markets bottomed last December. Coincidence? Maybe?
Anyway, here’s what I invite you to do…
When you bring up a company price chart, you’ll note it has two axes.
A price axis and a time axis.
And all anyone ever does is study the vertical axis; the price axis. This is the mistake that almost every investor makes.
You might want to give a little study to the x-axis as well. Just see what it might reveal. If anything?
Anyway, like I said, our modern calendar is an artificial construct. Perhaps the New Year really begins tomorrow? If so, I wish you good investing in the New Year ahead.
Enjoy the weekend.
Chartist, Time Trader