Tarot is something I want to start incorporating into my blog but I was unsure about how to begin without an introduction of some kind. I know people tend to interpret tarot in different ways so I thought I’d write a little bit about what it means to me*. I’m aware that it’s not a particularly mainstream interest and, although lots of you may find it interesting, I’m conscious that there might be an underlying feeling that it’s a bit weird. I’ll write this and leave you to make up your mind.
*This ended up being really long. Oops.
I remember buying my first deck of tarot cards at about 15 years old. They were from a shop in Bargate in Southampton, which is where I used to spend a lot of my weekends as a teenager. I still remember the smell of incense and the purple box they came in. I’d always had a love for mythology, folklore, magic and fantasy and bought those cards, I think, because I was drawn to the artistry and the mystery that tarot represented. I don’t remember ever doing a spread, but it was enough for me to just have made that initial purchase. Looking back, that was a defining moment in my life, not that I would’ve realised it then.
Time went by, life happened, I gave up on all things magical, and then randomly, for my Twenty Fourth Birthday, a friend from university gave me some Unicorn Oracle Cards. This was around the time I was on the waiting list for Cognitive Behavioural Therapy to tackle my low self esteem and I remember feeling something click, it was as though she was reminding me of a part of myself that I’d lost, without even really realising it. That, looking back, was a sign of the amazing things to come. Those cards remain incredibly special to me and are on my bedside table as I write this. Thank you GJ! xx
Fast forward again a few years, I was Twenty Six and living with a stranger (now friend) in the city centre. I found myself with those Oracle Cards under my pillow on many a night because somehow they provided a great source of strength to me. The fantastic thing about living on your own is that you are forced to get to know yourself – and I mean really get to know yourself – I spent a year of evenings in that cute little room (my sanctuary, see my post ANGELS) dealing with some overwhelming emotions. At the beginning I thought it was horrendous but it ended up being the one of the best and defining times of my life (so much so that now I love solitude more than anything haha). It was during that period that I, unknowingly, began to connect with tarot, and therefore, with myself. I guess this is when it became more than just about being ‘drawn’ to the cards in an aesthetic sense and I started to realise that they spoke to me on an intuitive level. I’m laughing as I write this because I’m fully aware of how nuts this sounds but if you bear with me I’m going to try to explain:
When I used to get desperately upset, I would refer to the Oracle Cards for guidance. I am not a religious person, at least, I wasn’t a religious person until I hit rock bottom and found myself pleading with God. My Dad actually said to me recently ‘you won’t find an atheist on a sinking ship’ which really struck a chord…anyway, I digress. My point about religion is that I haven’t ever felt a connection to God or Jesus or whoever, so whenever I used to feel conflicted or alone, prayers have always felt somewhat empty, and that always made me feel even worse. You cannot pray or get comfort from something that you don’t believe in, no matter how much you convince yourself it’s real, your gut knows your truth. That’s the basis of intuition and it doesn’t just count for religion, it counts for everything. Again, I digress, but I will come back to this point because it’s crucial. I gave up praying at some point and instead turned my questions, conflict and pain to the Oracle Cards. I literally had nothing to lose and was on my own so I shrugged off all self consciousness, gave my energy to the deck and asked a few distinct and important questions that were eating me up at the time.
The results left me speechless because they all came true. Which, looking back, shouldn’t have been a surprise. I didn’t understand it at the time because I was at the very start of a journey, so I guess I thought it was magic, when in reality the reason was this:
Tarot forces you to look inside of yourself and recognise your own truth. You KNOW the answers to every single question you want to know the answer to. All you have to do is place your energy there and ignore the outside forces that try to distract you from yourself. I think this is why I struggled with prayer because, to me, prayer is about asking somebody else for help and asking somebody else for support/guidance/forgiveness when actually, all you need is within you. If you don’t love, support and trust yourself, how do you expect anybody else to?
Please note that these are absolutely all my own views and I don’t claim to be an expert or any of these things, I can only talk from my own experience. I also wouldn’t call myself an atheist particularly, I’m spiritual as hell but it might look very different to other people’s versions of spirituality – this is another post for another day though!
So, there was a whole year of tuning in with these cards and my life changed a lot during this time; I moved into a new apartment with a friend (the palace), had some brilliant conversations which altered my perspective on a lot of things, went on a few dates, got settled into my career and at some point, when I had a day of feeling blue, I asked my mum if she’d buy me a new deck of Tarot Cards, which she did because she’s the coolest mum in all the land. These were Angel cards and I learnt so much more from them, there are a particular few that are so special because they couldn’t have predicted my life now more accurately.
Over the last 18 months I have truly started living for myself. I began to listen to what I wanted (and needed!) in my heart and stopped caring what other people thought. Tarot has been a small but a key factor in being able to tune into my feelings and intuition. I found that once I began to be totally honest with myself, the people who were entering my life were meeting me at my most authentic – which has meant very little, if any, conflict. When you vibrate at your truest frequency, you attract people on the same level and aren’t bothered by anyone who’s on a different path because you’re completely secure within yourself. I literally cannot remember the last time I had an argument with anybody – it’s crazy. I’ve gone off the tarot topic, but that’s because it connects to life on so many levels, I’ve only just really started to scratch the surface with this post!
For Christmas I received The Starchild Tarot from my mum and my boyfriend gave me The Fountain Tarot, both of which are absolutely beautiful. I read my Grandma’s cards during the holidays and was left tearful at how accurate the spread was and how her question revealed her innermost fears, hopes and dreams. I can’t explain why certain cards keep coming up in readings, why the spreads correlate so accurately to past, present and future circumstances or why I feel such an unwavering connection to them, I just do. Cornwall is drenched in spirituality and Pagan history, so perhaps it runs in my blood. I’ve been learning a lot about the history of witches recently, a topic I have always found fascinating, I could honestly write a dissertation about female strength, intuition, power, and the systematic stripping of our esteem by the patriarchy (don’t get me started hahaha) but that really is another post for another day – and one that I’ll definitely be writing!
Tarot, for me, ties in with self love, the law of attraction, divine purpose, the universe and loads of other things that I eventually want to write down. For now I’ll leave you with the quote that’s written on the inside of my favourite deck:
‘You are the voice and breath of universes.’