Most of my research into the tarot has been done by reading blog posts, articles and similar. You know me as someone who likes the written words, right?
But after a while, I realized I needed a visual. So I turned to youtube.
Over the past few weeks, I have discovered several online tarot readers I enjoyed listening to/watching on youtube. There are many – not all of them appealed to me. Some of them were very fast talkers, some of them were very flamboyant, some of them were (too) young and hyper, some of them were too technical or complicated… It took time to find some who spoke to me on a level that resonated with me.
There are two online tarot readers I listen to regularly; both are very informed, know their cards and meanings incredibly well, and have an on-point, intuitive method of speaking directly to me and my situation (even though they do general, not personalized, readings). They’re also both very personable; one is a 30-something American man who is very blunt and entertaining (but so accurate it’s a little unsettling). He reads wherever he is: at home, in the car, in a hotel room… 😀
The other is a soft-spoken lady who does not show herself. You can see her hands and the cards as she spreads them, but I found her voice to be very pleasant to listen to, and her readings are helpful to me both from an academic point of view as well as in a life-guiding sort of way. She divulged recently that she has an older teenaged son so I’m guessing her age similar to mine (GenX).
All this is a preamble and leads into what I wanted to touch on today’s Tarot Tuesday.
Up until now I have not really asked the tarot any questions. But I’m beginning to see the benefit in doing so, especially when I’m faced with a challenge. For instance, there was quite a lengthy period where I was unable to write. All the books or fiction I was working on were stalled, and I just couldn’t make the words come. Had I been a little bit more advanced in my tarot card knowledge, I could have turned to the tarot for guidance and ask it questions about why I was feeling stuck, or blocked.
Well, I’m reaching a point now where I can do this.
Tarot card reading isn’t about some magical method of pulling answers out of thin air, but rather about tapping into your subconscious to see if there is something within you that will lead to a solution to your problem, challenge or circumstance. Something strange happens to your brain when you look inward, it’s almost like there’s a bit of rewiring going on.
There are two things to know about this next step of tarot card reading for yourself:
What type of spread you lay your cards, and how to ask the questions.
When I first started, I simply used the 3-card spread. I did not associate specifics to the cards or their locations but have learned since then that there are many ways to use this straight-forward method. The most popular is probably the Past – Present – Future spread.
I checked some sources and noticed people sometimes choose to analyze the present card first, not the past. I didn’t know that this was an option and learned over the last few weeks that with tarot, there really isn’t one way that is correct. There is a lot of guidance, but you choose how to do your thing with your cards your way – no one will tell you you’re doing it wrong.
I like the past – present – future spread and have used it without asking pointed questions. But I will start doing this shortly.
The other spread I’ve come across that is easy for beginners to use is the 2-card cross (also known as the Celtic cross). I will probably focus on this one as I learn and get comfortable with the questions before moving back to the 3-card spread.
In the interest of keeping this post a manageable length, I will present some ideas but not dig deeper today. Perhaps I will have time to do a supplement sometime before next Tuesday, or video another session for my new youtube channel. (Thank you to those of you who have subscribed, liked and commented! ❤ )
However, just to show you what I learned the other day about the 2-card cross, I will demonstrate with some images I took for you this morning:
Ask your question while shuffling your cards.
Lay your first card vertically. This is the card that will address the heart of your question.
Lay your second card horizontally. This is the card that will address your challenge.
So my question was “what is blocking my creativity”? The Five of Pentacles is my heart of the question card, and the High Priestess my challenge card.
I will have to spend some time digging deeper into my notes to understand what the tarot is telling me here.
What and how to ask your questions
A few articles I came across discussed the dos and don’ts of questions. Keep in mind that the tarot is not some magical solution to all your problems; the trick is to ask it open-ended questions.
What this means is that questions beginning with Will I…? , When will…? or Should I…? aren’t going to help you discover the sought-after answers you’re looking for. Instead, if you ask the tarot What…, How… or Why… type questions, you’re going to find it easier to uncover suitable answers.
For example, if I ask the tarot “Will I ever finish my second book?” I will probably not get a concrete answer from the tarot. (They’re cards, printed on paper, not some magic witchery). 🙄 🙂
If I ask the tarot “What is blocking me from writing?” and I pull a card like the Five of Pentacles, I now have an opportunity to dip deeper into my blocking issues. (I’ve drawn the Five of Pentacles before so I have some idea what the card’s meaning is).
Five of Pentacles addressing why I’m feeling blocked and unable to write:
- I feel isolated and alone
- I feel abandoned
- I’m in victim-playing mode
- my focus is on what I lack rather than what I have
My focus on what I lack: I don’t have a room with a door to write, I have too many interruptions
My focus on what I have: I have a headset that can block out the noise and tune out the interruptions
By the time I figure out all of this, it’s time to connect with the challenge card, the High Priestess.
In short: she tells me I have all the knowledge I need within me. The High Priestess is unafraid of the shadows. The card showed up to encourage me to look toward what is making me uncomfortable, and to confront it. (I’ll stop here or this post will get too long and too personal/uninteresting for you…)
I’ll leave it at that for now. I’ll revisit the spreads topic again, and we’ll practice the questions to ask some more at a later date, too. Do let me know how you read your cards, and what worked or didn’t. See you in the comments!
If you enjoy the Tarot Tuesday series, I appreciate you letting me know via likes, comments, and on the youtube channel. Please feel free to add your expertise or opinions, I look forward to expanding my own knowledge base.
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