Newsletter Sample – Tarot Roles: Readings and Beyond



Do you know that I put out a monthly e-newsletter?  It is  true!  There is always a main Tarot-juicy article and I offer specials that my newsletter readers hear about first.  You can sign up here:  Now here is the sample article:
When people think of Tarot today, the image that comes to mind is, no doubt, of using the cards to get a reading.  But this is just the tip of the Tarot ice burg and below the surface is a diverse array of Tarot roles.  If we engage these expanded roles for Tarot, we’ll receive support for actually creating fuller and more inspired lives.

Here are 7 new names you might want to use to call the Tarot into your life.

Decision Making and Action Taking Coach:  We often come to the Tarot at a crossroads in our lives, needing to make a significant decision or shift behaviors and attitudes that no longer serve us.  A reading to give an overview of opportunities and obstacles, possible directions, and supports for creating a positive future is an excellent start to the process.  But then the real work begins for us and for the Tarot.  As we implement a plan or new vision, on-going consultations with the cards for more detailed action planning, course corrections, and even pep talks are helpful.  A coach of a sports team doesn’t stop talking to her players once the game has begun so why should the Tarot.  It is true that we can sometimes make the mistake of obsessively pulling cards to get the answers we want, but what I am talking about here is combining an intentional process of Tarot use with action taking.

Intuition Inspirer:  There is no need to be especially intuitive, let alone psychic to use the Tarot.  There is, after all, a tradition of ascribed meanings for the cards that can be learned and plenty of readers work in this manner.  But the symbols and images of the Tarot have a way of working on us.  They don’t speak a linear language and as we spend time with them we pick up their style of communicating.   Our intuitive abilities are awakened not only for use with the Tarot but in all areas of our life.  It’s like gaining another sense to aid you in everyday living.

Spiritual Mentor:  You may have heard the 22 cards of the Major Arcana referred to as a map of the spiritual journey.  Going through the Major Arcana in theJourney into the Tarot sessions, I have come to know in a deep way how the wisdom figures in these cards mentor us on how to dance between the spiritual peaks and valleys.  The Wheel, for example, lets you know that you exist in a wider context and not everything is in your control while The Hanged One teaches you how to surrender your ego and connect to what is most important so you can meet Death as an opportunity for transformation rather than something to fear.

Creativity Consultant:  With Kings and Queens, people dancing and fighting, and mysterious forces like the Moon and the Stars, the Tarot has all the elements necessary ignite the muses of storytellers who work with words and pictures.  The Tarot also stimulates creativity for any kind of task.  Creating a work plan, organizing an event, or finding something interesting for kids to do, all require creative brain activity.  Feeling stuck?  Pull a card and look at the picture.  Let something pop into your mind.  Even if it is odd – better if it is odd! – it can spark the next action to keep moving you forward.  I go stuck writing this article and pulled The Wheel and The Empress.  The Wheel said, “The energy that surrounds you is not optimal for productivity right now,” and The Empress said, “Keep creating anyway.  I’m always creating no matter what!”  So I kept writing through the block.

Stress Reducer:  I worry.  I bet you do, too.  And a lot of my worry isn’t that useful or even grounded in what is truly happening.  Pulling cards can be a reality check.  Taking the example of The Wheel, again, I was starting to beat myself up for being a bad, unproductive writer, but The Wheel reminded me that not everything is in my control.  The stress went down and the writing started to flow.  There are some cards in the deck that just bring a smile to your face and lower the blood pressure.  Peace comes over me when I see The Star.  These kinds of cards can be pulled out and used for meditation or just visual reminders of the possibility of peace when you are in stressful situations.

Guide to Wisdom Traditions:  The structure of the Tarot lends itself to being a conveyor of wisdom traditions across time and traditions.  Aeclectic Tarot is a wonderful resource for viewing and getting information on more than a thousand Tarot decks.  They list themes of Celtic, Astrology, Golden Dawn, Native American, Pagan, Ancient Egyptian, and Christian, for example.  Tarots created out of these traditions can become flash cards for learning new spiritual and religious systems.  Caitlin Matthew’s Celtic Wisdom Tarot is one of my favorite decks; the colorful artwork is mesmerizing and each card relates to a deity or story from the Celtic tradition.  I don’t do readings with it that much but I keep using it personally to grow my knowledge of a tradition that inspires me.

Doorway into Mystery:  We come to the Tarot with questions and we want them answered … now!  But not every question or situation has a ready answer.  Sometimes we keep getting a particular card over and over again and don’t understand why.  It just may not be the time for the meaning to become consciously clear.  The Tarot invites us to befriend that mystery and uncertainty.  Keep coming back to the cards and with time a meaning may emerge … or not. There might be something for you to learn in the non-answer as much as in an answer.  Just ask the Hanged One, s/he’s been in the same limbo for centuries!

[Note: Card images are from The Gaian Tarot and used with the gracious and generous permission of Joanna Powell Colbert.]

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