The best part about having a Tarot Blog is that I no longer have to think through things only in my head and have them run around inside pointlessly. The blog gives me an outlet to be creative, to talk about Tarot and reach out to the world. One of the almost constant running conversations in my head are a list of things that I would love my clients to know. These five points are a collection of (somewhat) random musings from my experience as a Tarot reader, a therapist and a client. I talk here about what I wished clients knew about readings, the Tarot and how they can get the most out of readings (from me!)
- I am not a fortune teller or soothsayer
I’m really not. I don’t use the Tarot to tell the future or to ask the Tarot about a client’s future. This is matter of my beliefs and experiences and for now my expertise as well. If something comes up that pertains to the future, sure, I’ll say it but it isn’t my main goal in a reading. It’s down to belief, I believe that we co- create the future using our own actions and taking responsibility for the present helps create a better future. I usually advise framing questions that centre on asking for advice and what people can do for themselves to make their present more joyful. It’s also a matter of professionalism, as a professional Tarot Reader I want to stay inside my realm of competence, delivering good competent readings to my clients. Create the future by understanding your present, I say rather than looking for it in the cards.
2. Clients can be active participants in the Tarot reading process
As a client you have a lot of power. You get to choose the question, you get to ask follow up questions and get a chance to clarify things. You can also tell me that certain facts aren’t relevant, confirm intuitive hits and let me know if you’re uncomfortable with anything. There’s nothing I like better than a client that asks me questions about the reading, and my responses. I also love it when clients take responsibility for themselves and are open (but sceptical) of the advice the Tarot is giving them. I prefer interactions that are 2 way open dialogues where the client explains the situation, I read the cards followed by the client asking questions and giving feedback. This way the client leaves with something valuable from the reading and the discussion and I feel it’s a job well done. Sure, it’s more difficult in email readings but there too the question can be clearly defined and one can give feedback.
3. There are no “bad” cards in the Tarot
There are some cards in the Tarot with scary titles (hello; Death and the Devil). There are some with really unpleasant images on them for example the Tower and the Ten of Swords. I for one, don’t want to be the man in the image with swords stuck in my back (Ouch!). All very unpalatable and not very welcoming at all. That being said these cards exist for a reason. Like life with it’s sunshine and darkness, happiness and sadness the Tarot also has cards that show the darker side of life. As in cycles where each end points to a new beginning, these cards which may indicate difficult experiences appear to remind us that they are part of the learning in life and will be followed by happier times.
4. Asking the same question a number of times doesn’t change the answer
One day when I was quite new to the Tarot I read for a friend. I did the reading based on the question she asked and laid the cards out in the classic Celtic cross spread. In this reading I gave an answer she wasn’t too happy with. Upset, she asked me to lay out another reading on that very question again and once again I got the same answer (with very many of the same cards). We did this three times before I gave up and finally said (a bit grumpily) this is the answer, I don’t think I can do any more (Phew!). What I learned from this incident was that sometimes we hear things from the Tarot that we really don’t want to (it happens more often than not) and we might have been ignoring something in our own lives brought to light by the Tarot. At this point turning away from the advice given by the Tarot and asking the reader to read the question again is unfair and mostly just a waste of time. If you don’t want an answer don’t ask is the mantra.
5. Fuzzy questions get fuzzy answers
I’ve noticed throughout my practice that asking fuzzy, undefined , badly thought through general questions elicit general, unspecified answers from the Tarot. Questions which are general, e.g. tell me about love can get a far more general answer from the cards than a clear question like , What should I do to attract love into my life? A clear question like the latter helps set up targeted card positions in the reading and answer questions in a focussed and practical way.
I think I still have some more points in this same vein to share at a later stage. Till then I leave you with a photo of the gorgeous Jasmine tree outside my window that I can see from vantage point in my room whilst typing away (mostly Readings and blog posts :P) on my computer.