I don’t offer predictive readings about what will happen in future. In fact the “future” does not really exist except as a tense in verbs. The future is a concept that we created and hold in our own minds. The future constantly changes, and the exact timing of events, meetings and co-incidences is very difficult to predict accurately unless they are sequenced according to unchanging laws of physics. In any situation involving the free will and choices of human beings, or mutable natural forces such as weather, you could almost say change is the only constant force.
There is a big difference between divination and prediction. Divination is an ancient art, and misunderstanding this may have led to popular misconceptions about “fortune tellers” and “fate”. A hotline or in-person psychic might tell you that something is going to happen or “is meant to be”, and at the moment that she says so, there is a high probability the event will occur as she sees it. Yet even when the psychic is gifted, in many cases the event does not happen quite as predicted, or if it does the timing is badly off, because some underlying factors changed. Some of what is described may happen, and some may not, and so the prediction is not much practical help. Basing your decisions on predictions given to you by another person means you will probably not get far with bringing about your desired outcomes. Because I was always fascinated by this, I have experimented with consulting psychics over a lifetime. Very little of what they told me ever came about – in fact less than ten per cent. This is less than random chance! I think this is partly because some psychics feel obliged to give answers fast and if they are paid per minute, they do not have time to listen. However, divination is another story.
So what is divination? A diviner uses the tools of his of her choice, whether tarot, runes, I Ching, casting or any other oracle. The diviner enters sacred space, and “consults the oracle”. This process has a spiritual component and involves complexity because the diviner must spend time working with the tool, attuning to his or her spiritual guidance, and coming into a state of timeless mindfulness. Performing the reading can be described as a ritual, a spiritual, sacred or magical process, consulting with guides or angels, or prayer. In this way I can see how members of fundamentalist religious sects are horrified by tarot, and rightly so, as in some religions Gnosis, the direct and personal perception of truth, is forbidden and it is considered blasphemous. Tarot is a revealer of the truth. A tarot reader therefore has to hold high ethical standards and demonstrate respect.
The diviner reads the quantum field of the other person – designated as the client. This is known as distant viewing, as the location of either party makes no difference. In this viewing, the skilled diviner or oracle or tarot reader can pick out aspects of information about the client that come forward and call her attention.
In this process, the tarot reader follows certain laws of the universe, ones that actively support the diviner-client joint consultation process.
- In order to progress and evolve, each of us must reach out for help to another person who has the necessary vision and spiritual standing to be able to offer sincere, compassionate and rigorous help. None of us can travel far alone, as we all need feedback and guidance to help us gain sufficient perspective.
- “Where two or more people gather together” – this is a mysteriously lovely process. Where two people gather with the benevolent and sincere intention to foster the growth and development of the client, this creates a shared field that is stronger than one you create alone. The focus of the reading – bringing about positive change, problem solving, or attainment of desired goals – are strengthened. I personally experience the quality of this mysterious energy as fresh, uplifting, encouraging, affirming, dynamic, reassuring, creative, challenging, truthful and benevolent. How do you experience it? I would love to know your own experience. A good tarot reading will help you feel seen, affirmed, recognised, encouraged, and nudged forward to embrace your next Significant Learning Opportunity.
Shared Intention creates bigger results. Shared witnessing within the joint field in and of itself creates quantum results. The quality of mindful attention of two or more people is transformative, in and of itself. The field responds to your enquiry. The reading offers you the opportunity to clarify and focus your intentions for your life, renew your faith and optimism and re-set your mind. The act of focusing on your wishes, goals and intentions together with another person has a “magical” effect – it moves them forward a little, seemingly without your doing anything other than paying attention to them!
- You are responsible for your own growth and for your own choices, but you can seek illumination and inspiration to guide you. In divination, the responsibility lies firmly upon the shoulders of the client to take the necessary steps to bring about benevolent change. Divination brings you inspiration and information, but it is up to you how you make use of it. A tarot reading never takes away your responsibility to make choices and decisions, to grow with your challenges, climb your mountains, conquer your inner demons and face your fears.
- The process of spiritual attunement works if the reader is a clear enough conduit or channel and has done her own work on herself. There are no shortcuts to spiritual growth and responsibility. She needs to tune into her own inner spiritual guidance system, and she will often tune into yours as well. The more a reader does this, provided she is able to learn from the experience, the better she gets at it, and you pay for a reader’s depth of experience. Many tarot and oracle decks have been designed by artists to support and facilitate this process, and they deliberately employ fantasy imagery which evokes or taps into their own spiritual guidance system, or the archetypes of the tarot as a thought-form.
The tarot, due to its multi-layered complexity, and the way its 72 cards can be read in an infinite number of combinations, is an oracle system that gives precise and detailed results. An experienced reader can recognise patterns and then step these down to relate them to your personal situation.
So should you believe a tarot reading?
It is your free choice whether you place your trust in a reading. Consider how the reading makes you feel. Before you take any action based on a tarot reading, consider the following, bearing in mind that no reader is 100% accurate, due to human bias. Was the reader clear, neutral, benevolent and not unduly coloured by her own assumptions about you? Do you feel in your gut that the reading resonates with you, and feels true and sound? Do you feel the reader really got the question(s) you wanted answered, (did you give your reader the question(s) you really want answered, or did you actually ask something else instead? Test out the reading. Test out one of the pieces of guidance, the one that is easiest for you to follow immediately. Try it out in reality, and evaluate the results. You will receive real-life feedback quickly, especially if you ask for this. Check the reading with a trusted friend, and see if they recognise you in it.
Sometimes mirrors confuse us, because what is mirrored back to us is not our conscious self, but aspects of ourselves that we radiate semi-consciously – so we do not recognise the reflection as having anything to do with us. The tarot mirror may offer you a reflection of yourself that you either do not like or do not recognise. This is likely to make you feel either angry or depressed! If you find yourself reacting emotionally to a reading, it’s down to you to explore what this feeling is about. Has a sensitive button been pressed? Did the reading reveal a truth you are not ready to hear? Or is it just really off and you feel it is about a different person, not you? Sometimes you need to sit with a reading for a few weeks and see how things turn out. If it still feels all wrong, then tell your reader about it and ask for her help.