|Mystical Lenormand AG Muller 2005|
Well, karma is the result of your actions--something you get based on what you put out. Karma is action that brings certain inevitable results upon you, either in this life or the next, and can be either good or bad. If you do something good, you get something good in return. If you do something bad, you get something bad in return. Karma, then, comes from within a person, based on his or her choices, and is thus attached to free will. Fate, on the other hand, is something that unavoidably befalls a person, something which has been inevitably predetermined, for reasons that have no connection to free will or human actions. And 'fate' has strong implications of something negative--death, destruction, ruin. But wait? What has either to do with the Cross?
Let's be frank, the Cross has culturally been a Christian symbol, so we need to look at this card from the culturally accurate point of view, despite the fact that the Mystical Lenormand uses the reappropriated 'pagan' Celtic cross for its design. Karma and fate have nothing to do with the Christian story of the cross.
Apologies, but to get to the root of this card's meaning, you do have to think just a little bit more about Christianity. It's cultural. (This so obvious I can't believe I feel the need to say anything about it.) Stay with me. Now, the Lenormand oracle was designed with common symbols and images for ordinary people, so I believe this card is meant to trigger the most mundane and ordinary association that a common person in the 18th and 19th centuries would likely have with the cross, which would be the saying, 'We all have our crosses to bear.' First, I'd like to point out that this common saying is based on a teaching of Jesus found in Matthew 16:24, Mark 8:34, and Luke 9:23--'If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.' Obviously, the phrase 'We all have our crosses to bear' comes from this teaching. Secondly I'd like to emphasize that in common parlance, this phrase means bearing the burdens that life presents you, and NOT particularly those which result from obedience to the Saviour, as implied by the writers of the Gospels in the verses cited above. So, even though the phrase derived from a Christian teaching, it became a secular phrase, and thus it seems best to avoid religious, spiritual or Christian sentiment in interpreting the Cross card. Now we have come full circle.
Clearly, to me, the Cross card signifies bad stuff happening that we just have to go through. We have no choice but to 'bear this cross', as the alternative would be to be squashed flat by it. (In fact, one source suggests that the traditional 6 of Clubs cartomantic meaning is to 'take responsibility for a situation and do whatever is necessary to encourage success'--that sounds a lot like the secular meaning of bearing one's cross. Of course, another source says the 6 of Clubs means 'a sure portent of success based on a trusted friendship'--so much for playing card meanings, then!)
So no, I don't think this card means fate or karma! It means unpleasant stuff that you can't get out of. That could be absolutely anything from the most mundane annoyance to something deeply tragic.