How Does Tarot Reading Work?

ktln new pic by j2    It works by what Jung called synchronicity (see @Tarot Card Philosophy – HowStuffWorks.) The reader uses the imagery and numbers with all their associated symbolism to help them articulate their intuitive impressions more precisely.

Tarot is an old western esoteric artifact, but is only one of many available systems of divination.

The 78 cards offer a symbolic language. The reader ‘uploads’ a ‘programme’ by learning the meanings and associations of the cards. In a reading, the reader draws cards blindly and at random, and uses the imagery on the cards as a prompt, to share what they feel about a given person, situation or question. The thing that is most amazing, even uncanny, is the absolute relevance of cards drawn at random and blindly (being upside down when they are drawn). This is where the apparent miracle of synchronicity occurs.

mawheel wheel of fortune

The Wheel of Fortune; Public Domain

How does the reader choose cards supposedly at random, which so appropriately identify the enquirer’s situation or question? It can be darn spooky.

The answer is, the reader doesn’t know exactly. They simply trust, or learn to trust the unconscious process. What they have done is trained/strengthened a natural faculty by uploading a kind of programme or whether Tarot, or Astrology or Runes. There are many such ‘programmes’.

Sometimes the card does not actually contain literal relevant imagery. How could a deck of 78 cards contain all the possible images in the world? The cards deal with this by using archetypes, eg The Chariot = effort, progress, ambition, team work, or literally, a vehicle. Any vehicle or a driving job, or test.

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From the IJJ Swiss Tarot, by Stuart Kaplan.

Each card has a number of possible meanings attached, and this starts with book knowledge but the reader must still make a leap of intuition in deciding which meaning applies.  Such a leap in the dark may result in a ‘psychic’ insight, where all existing book meanings for the card is bypassed and a unique meaning arrived at.

During one reading I drew the Page of Cups from the Universal Waite. The card generally signifies happy new developments, sometimes a welcome gift or a message. On this occasion, I looked at it and without thinking, asked the lady, did she ate a lot of those pink and white marshmallows? She was astonished and so was I, and we laughed when she opened her hand bag and there was a packet of those same marshmallows inside it.

It was the pink and white of the picture that leapt to my attention and prompted my question; the rest went into the background. How, exactly that happened, I  do not know. I was almost but not equally astonished as my visitor and by now, take it for granted that a conference with the Tarot can result in these experiences.

 

page of cupsmarshmallow

From The Universal Waite

Tarot accesses a natural talent of the most normal, ancient human mind. We all possess it. A ‘psychic’ reader is simply someone who noticed it,  been interested and through study self training and often many years of practice, gone on to exercise and develop this natural ability, rather like a muscle of the mind.

Until next time 🙂

Towering Tuesday

 

Recently, there was a sudden death in the extended family circle. Not close to me, personally, but untimely and deeply sad, and I’d been seeing the Tower card for early June, ever since the end of April and had been holding myself slightly in readiness for unwelcome news. The Tower delivered more bad stuff after this sad event, and it’s still on-going, very sadly but it also did another job, to do with timing.

I asked the Tarot, what day of the week will V’s funeral be held?

I drew The Tower card and said to Il Matrimonio who’d asked. ‘I think it will be on a Tuesday.’

The Tower card corresponds to Mars, god of war, who is Tyr or Tew in Norse mythology, and Tyr gives his name to Tuesday. This ultimate warrior lost his hand in binding the great wolf Fenris, who threatened to eat the world.

Tyr fighting fenris

Four days later we learned the funeral will be held on Tuesday 1 July.

Tarot and timing is notoriously tricky amongst readers, but there are a number of ways of having a stab at predicting when a thing might happen using the cards.

A dominance of Swords and Wands cards indicate now, soon or quickly. A dominance of Pentacles and Cups cards indicates later, gradually, delays.

Days of the Week correlations:

Monday The Moon card
Tuesday, The Tower (Tyr’s/Tew’s day)
Wednesday, The Magician (Odin’s/Woden’s day)
Thursday, The Wheel of Fortune
Friday, The Empress, Friday (Freya’s day)
Saturday, (Saturn’s Day) The World card
Sunday, the Sun card.

Until next time 🙂

A Pendulum Prediction: Tunnel Vision

Depiction of Hannibal and his army crossing th...
Depiction of Hannibal and his army crossing the Alps during the Second Punic War. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I recently returned from an overseas family vacation driving in Europe, marginally more relaxing than crossing the Alps with Hannibal. OK, it was intense, but let’s keep a sense of proportion. It was nothing like marching with Hannibal. I had scrambled eggs for breakfast every day, once with chopped chives. The sun shone all week. It was instructive, it made a change, and my husband, Il Matrimonio, was in seventh heaven; king of the road in his lovely new black shiny car that he, ahem, loves.

Below we have the The Chariot card from The Gilded Tarot, representing progress, teamwork, ambition, and literally, a vehicle. Image by kind permission of Ciro Marchetti.

chariot card gilded

Yes, it was Chariot time. What else could one do, but belt up, pray not to need the loo in a hurry; no joke if you’re having to use a wheelchair for any reason, and look and learn?

There was plenty to see; Reims Cathedral, the snowy summit of the Eiger, the battlefields of Ypres. No goats in Switzerland. Perhaps because it was still hot, they were still up on the high pastures. No ghosts in Ypres, or in Polygon Wood, where Kiwis, Aussies and Brits lie, all brothers together, though I wouldn’t have been surprised to have seen one, standing waist high in the tall green fields.

No risk of mal- de- mer, we had gone through the Channel Tunnel. Quick and easy, no fuss,  sitting, working up our best French, and in some cases, spoof French, to be spat out 25 minutes in La Belle France.

The course of the Channel Tunnel (English).
The course of the Channel Tunnel (English). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On the return trip, however, there occurred a minor delay. We had made the crossing. The train had slowed right down. We’d had the announcements thanking us for travelling Euro-Tunnel, and were doing up our seat-belts ready to stop and drive off, when abruptly the train stopped, the lights went out and we were trapped in the dark in the belly of this vast tin-can underwater snake.

We heard announcements and apologies to the effect that power had been lost, preventing us from reaching the platform at Ashford, but hopefully it wouldn’t be long before power was restored.

How long would it be, I wondered? My tarot cards were in my suitcase, but I had my pendulum in my handbag. I held the pendulum, suspending it over my lap and asked, ‘how long till we move? Will it be 5 minutes?’

The pendulum dithered, then began to move in a circle, anti-clockwise. For me, that always means ‘no.’

It wasn’t the answer I was hoping for. So what. That’s the risk in consulting oracles.

‘How long till we move?’ I asked again. ‘Will it be 10 minutes?’ The pendulum hesitated, then began to swing clockwise. For me, that always means yes.

‘Only ten more minutes, with any luck,’ I said to Il Matrimonio, as he sat, tapping his fingers on the steering wheel, in-between kissing it, or wishing he could.

‘Are we there, yet?’ the teen piped up, stirring it from the back of the car.

Il Matrimonio glanced at his watch, to monitor the prediction, and this is why I am able to tell you, the lights came back on, the power was back, and the train began to move, 9 minutes and 50 seconds later.

Anyone can learn to dowse. It’s not magic. OK, it is. It’s everyday human magic. You won’t always get it right. I don’t, but it’s one of those things you get better at with practice.

There are lots of books on the subject, and plenty of how-to articles on-line. No need to spend money to mobilize this magic. You don’t even need to buy a pendulum. You can use a ring on a string, or even a threaded needle, stuck into a cork. You need a cord or string for there to be that crucial swing, when gravity gets hold of the body twitch, when it comes, that’s the answer needing translation, the non-verbal reply coming from your central nervous system.

What you need to do is decide in advance what movement shall mean ‘yes’, what movement shall mean ‘no’, and what shall represent ‘don’t know’, or ‘ask again later.’

Then ask your question, relax, and trust yourself. Learning to trust yourself, that’s the hardest thing you have to teach yourself, if it doesn’t come naturally. It is the challenge in learning Tarot, it is the challenge in using the insights provided by dreams. It is the challenge in learning to believe yourself, and not beat yourself up when you take an instant ‘unfair’ like or dislike to someone or something. Have you ever felt like that and reasoned yourself out of it, only to come full circle?

Your first feeling is the one to trust. It can save much time, energy, heartache, or even money.

You know more than you know you know. Why don’t they teach this in school?

Tunnel

The use of divinatory tools is largely a means of silencing the counter-arguments of the know-it-all front brain. The conscious attention goes to the tool, creating a tiny oasis of stillness in which to more easily connect with the silent voice of the body’s primary intelligence; instinct.

It trumps tunnel vision, any time. Unless, perhaps, it’s a vision in a tunnel.

Until next time 🙂

The Ace of Cups

For students of Tarot, or the just curious, a few words about The Ace of Cups.

Meanings: Inception, Awakening of Love, Creativity, Vision and the Empowerment of Intuition. It is Beauty. It is The Element of Water, it is The Chalice, The Holy Grail. Sometimes it indicates a coming birth. I have known it accurately indicate healing and recovery from illness or after an accident. It is Grace.

It is known as the Ace of Hearts in a deck of playing cards.

‘My Cup Runneth Over’ is the moment that cannot be surpassed.

Whereas the Ace of Wands, Ace of the South, refers to the primal spark, the fires of Creation, the Ace of Cups, Ace of the West, is the matrix of Life.

The Ace of Cups speaks of Source. Physically, The human body runs primarily on water and minerals. Every physiological process that happens inside the body needs water. The human body is made up of more than 70% water. The blood is more than 85%, the brain more than 80%, muscles more than 75%, and the liver is 96% water.

But beyond the immediate physical, what is our most distant physical story, back to the point of Creation, or as some might prefer to think of it, life’s origin in space, or divinity? Dust from space ultimately cross-reacted making water, an epic of chemistry which made the seas, where Life on Earth began.
We are undines, raised by evolution from the deep.
Sublimis ab unda.

The poem below, for me echoes the deeps contained within the image of The Ace of Cups. It’s from a little known contemporary poet of rare subtlety, yet also directness and integrity.

A poem, like a song, like a picture, a sculpture, a photograph, a smile, a kiss, is a manifestation of the Ace of Cups, of the moment, but eternal.

Here is a Ace within the Ace.

Small Object of Desire

I suppose I should have picked my wedding ring
but that is personal and finite to me
as is my two faced charm on a silver chain
triangular, goldstone, tourmaline

But I chose this, lifted from some shore line,
a smaller bit than I’d found and lost before;
a spindle from a whelkish structured shell
more beautiful than any sculptor’s form.

It gives only a hint of its infinite fetch,
newel staircase, ramp to raise the megaliths,
invasive toxic spirochete to invest my blood,
screw my life force with its sickening brood.

No porcelain is half so fine,
that comes from Meissen’s arcane kiln.
This is the divine, the spiral double helix.
Where else should it be but on a beach?

My small object of desire, refined by tidal pull,
inch long, white and deeply curved,
maths of all dimensions along its reach,
shape and key to life, needs only my breath to live.

Margaret Whyte
The Source
2008

Shared here by kind permission of the author.

Until next time 🙂

A Robin’s Tarot Tale

A real reading done for a robin, befitting the season.

 

 
Image: Public Domain

There are many depictions of animals and birds in the Tarot.  They form a great part of the human landscape physically, intellectually, emotionally, spiritually, and symbolically. If there’s a heaven, what would it be without them? I wouldn’t mind, personally if mosquitoes, maggots, deadly snakes and komodo dragons didn’t make it. Spiders would be all right as long as they were non-venomous and less than two inches in diameter. However, it’s not me in charge.

The  songbird traditionally most associated with Christmas, or to give the winter festival its older name,   Yuletide – is the robin redbreast. The cheeky, dumpy little European robin, Erithacus rubecula is a member of the flycatcher family.

Its preferred habitats are woodlands, hedgerows, parks and garden. Its staple diet is worms, seeds, fruits and insects. It will fight over sunflower seeds and it adores mealworms. You can buy these in dried form in lots of outlets including many supermarkets. They look revolting though people used to baiting fish hooks won’t mind them. Robins have been to take mealworms by hand, so irresistibly delicious are they to robin-kind.

Male and female European robins are identical to look at, adults of both sexes having the red breast, while young robins have no red breast, and are a speckled golden brown colour. The lack of red breast in the young defends them from territorial attack by adults. The robin lives a little over one year on average. If it lives beyond 1.1 years it may achieve twelve years and has been known to reach the age of twenty, but long life is rare.

The robin’s endearing appearance belies its feistiness. It’ll fight to the death for its territory, and one in ten die in combat. They have been seen to chase off pigeons much bigger than they are. The one in my garden right now however, is rather timid and will scurry into the rosemary when a pigeon appears. Well, I suppose they are individuals just as we are.

Robin redbreast builds a cup-shaped nest in a hole or hidden in ground cover, and will sing all year round. Click here to hear its song and for other general information from the RSPB:-

The robin received the human pet name of ‘Robin’ in the fifteenth century. It has a special place in the library of legends embedded in the Tarot, and a robin may be observed in some decks, including the King of Pentacles card in the Sacred Circle Tarot Deck.

It belongs there by virtue of the symbolism and superstitions attached to it.

Some older people consider the robin a bird of ill omen, a harbinger of death. It is considered unlucky for a robin to fly into a house as Death is expected to follow. For this reason, a Christmas card with a picture of a robin on it is not always welcome with people aware of this tradition. But compassion and care for the dead is also attributed to the robin. One legend says that it tried to help Christ by pulling off a thorn from the crown Jesus had been made to wear, injuring itself in the process – hence its red breast. Another old tale says that it was a robin who found the bodies of the lost ‘Babes in the Wood‘, and who buried them with a golden coverlet of fallen leaves.

If your robin seems shy, it may be a visitor from Europe. British robins haunt gardens more than their European relatives, are more used to human contact and are bold in comparison with European winter visitors which tend to favour woodlands in their native lands.

All right, you robin.

English: Robin Redbreast
English: Robin Redbreast (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’m on my way out with  sugared bread (for energy it’s better to give them cake or sugared bread than plain bread) Here are some more of those revolting mealworms, and let’s hang up another half coconut of fat and nuts. But note this, my fine robin friend; this is not just for you, but is for sharing with the blue-tits and coal-tits, the blackbirds,  sparrows and the finches.

The North Wind Doth blow

And we shall have snow

And what will the robin do then, poor thing?

He’ll hide in a barn

To keep himself warm

And hide his head under his wing, poor thing.

Let’s see what the robin currently peering out from the safety of the big rosemary bush, will communicate via the Tarot.

Are you a cock or hen robin?

Answer card: The High Priestess. Just to make sure, I pull another card and get the Moon Reversed. Meanings: I am a hen bird. I am solitary right now, I want no mate. This is not the time.

What are you thinking right now?

Answer card: The Empress. Meaning? What have we here? Food! I have discovered a new harvest!  Being provided for, I must eat my fill while I can.

I pull another card, just as the robin flies off again…and, strangely enough, the card is The Chariot.  The robin has flitted just a short distance to sit on top of the seed feeder hung in the bare branches of the laburnum tree.

Why have you gone to sit there?

Answer card: The Seven of Wands Reversed.  Meaning: I am new to this garden and I must be careful. This is a good vantage point from which to spy out enemies and not be taken unawares.

What’s your favourite time of year?  

Answer card: The Empress Reversed.  Meaning: A time when there are plenty of fruits and seeds, but there are still sheltering leaves on the trees. A time when there are still long hours of light to feed by, and sometimes there’s still warmth…the night is not so bitter, the air does not bite so hard. My legs creak like sticks at first light when I must move for food or die. How I wish it could always be the time of the Empress.

OK, verification may not be an option as with readings done for domestic species.  Still, I have done animal readings before, and know intuitive communication can work inter-species. Maybe it would not work with all species, but the tarot affords a means of extending perception beyond the boundaries of self, and living things share common drives and goals. Sentient and sensate beings, whether bare or feathered, scaled or furry, are inextricably subject to vagaries of environment, the common denominator in shared consciousness.

During the severe winter of 1962/63, the UK robin population was worse than decimated, reduced to an estimated 50-60 breeding pairs. Spare a little if you can, for your fellow creatures outside this winter.

Until next time 🙂

The Death Card, Dowsing & The Diamond Ring.

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I drew The Ace of Pentacles once, and was initially puzzled as to why, Tarot was flagging it up as a problem, but the lady was adamant there were no money or property issues troubling her, as I would have expected with this card, being drawn reversed as it was.

In fact it did represent a property issue. It was just that the lady hadn’t thought of it in those terms. The Ace of Pentacles reversed represented a diamond ring, and the card was drawn reversed because the ring was missing and had been lost now for more than eighteen months. The lady was very sad about it. The ring had been a gift from her husband who had died three years previously; a fact I knew already from previous readings for this delightful lady.

Ace of Coins from the Rider-Waite Tarot deck

If I had not already known, the appearance of the 9 of Swords (grieving, bereavement, sleepless nights) would have been a clue.

Below is the Rider-Waite Nine of Swords (U.S. Games)

The lady asked my help in finding the missing ring.  DISCLAIMER follows: Neither dowsing or remote viewing – the other possibility for finding lost objects psychically – form part of my professional  service, which focusses on situational feedback, advice and forecasts.

I reminded her of this, but she asked me to please just have a go anyway. I’d been right about things before, and the loss was preying on her mind. I agreed because I knew her, and knew she would understand it was a long shot. I said I would not charge, as I could not guarantee success. She replied, gracious as always, she wished to pay for my time, regardless.

I began by asking the Tarot whether the lost ring was still in my clients flat.

I did this using a counting spread. This is how it works. Drawing more than 50% of the cards upright is a yes answer in this type of spread, less than 50% is a no. The more upright cards, the stronger the ‘yes’ signal. The more reversed cards, the stronger the ‘no’ .

Getting a 50% answer, which happens a lot, gaaahhh, is the greatest challenge and often, I have learned the hard way, signifies the need to rephrase the question, or ask a different question to obtain the best answer.

Using this counting approach now, the Tarot indicated that yes, the ring was in her flat still. It had not been thrown away by accident as she feared.

The prospect of using the cards for narrowing down the exact location of a ring in a flat I had never visited was a time -consuming prospect however. I decided that instead, I would try dowsing with a pendulum.

I didn’t have my quartz pendulum handy, so I removed my neck chain which had a small pendant. I would use this to request yes, no and maybe answers that would help me edit out all the other impressions that might come to me through the cards.

I would draw single cards for extra information.

I wrote the word ‘Bedroom‘ on paper first because my client was pretty determined that the ring must be in the bedroom. I suspended the chain and locket over the word and it described an anti-clockwise circle which I took for a no answer.

Was the ring in the kitchen? No.

The bathroom? No.

The sitting room? The pendulum described a clockwise circle. Yes.

Dowsing appeared to have selected the sitting room. I drew another card at random and got The Death card. All I could think was that the lost ring was somehow in the keeping of the lady’s deceased husband.

Had her husband been buried or cremated, I asked? Cremated she said. I proceeded to tell her a story from my own life in which I had dowsed a dear one’s ashes, to know where they should be scattered, in accordance with the owners preferences, there having been no instruction in the will. Why did I tell her this? I did not fully understand at the time, but I would later.

Was there a vase in her sitting room with white roses in it? I asked. My reason for asking was that the thought came to me, considering the white rose on Death’s banner you can see on the picture of this Rider-Waite card (U.S Games).

No, she said, there were no white roses. Oh, well, I said, it was just a thought. Not to worry, but perhaps just bear it in mind while you look.

She left with advice to search the sitting room, near objects with a strong physical association with her husband. It really felt to me as if he had it, and was looking after it for her…a crazy notion, on the face of it.

She left at 12.30. At 2.55 she rang to tell me she had found the ring. She had needed a step- ladder to find it (so, if you see the 6 of Wands, which appeared at my first look, bear in mind it might, depending on circumstances, literally be a ladder.)

The diamond ring was on top of a wall unit in the sitting room, right beside the jar in which she kept her husband’s ashes.

‘I feel so silly,’ she said, ‘you asked about white roses, and I told you I hadn’t any when all the time there was a vase of them – silk ones, you know – on the hearth by the wall unit.’

I was delighted as you can imagine. Also a teensy bit freaked and considerable in awe.

How strange the Universe is and its workings. How mysterious the human mind is. She might have put it there herself, done it on automatic pilot and then forgotten. I helped her fetch it out of her memory. If not …the  possibilities are strange indeed.

BUT. This is crucial, she was willing to work with me and help me try to help her. We found it together.

Check out dowsing on Google and Dowsing Associations and Societies if you’ve ever wondered if you have hidden water  in your back garden, or want to know more about it in general. Use these links:-

http://www.britishdowsers.org/

http://www.dowsers.org/

Now where the *beep* did I leave my cup of tea?

 

Until next time 🙂

 

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