What to Expect from a Tarot Reading

October 23, 2020

I’ve always taken an interest in the metaphysical/mystical, ever since I can remember. We had a Ouiji board growing up, but like most kids messing around with that stuff (word of warning: DON’T), we just used it for asking silly things like if our crush was into us, and then we would all scream with excitement as we took turns yelling over each other, “You’re moving it! Ok, really guys, who’s moving it? I’m not doing it!” 

I was also super into faeries as a kid and collected all things fae – books (this Suza Scalora photography collection moved me so much as a teen), figurines, and I eventually graduated to this beautiful faerie oracle deck. I had no idea really what I was doing or how to use it, but I found the idea alluring – plus, you can’t deny the art is serene and ethereal (quick side note: a tarot deck is much more structured and has ancient roots, whereas an oracle deck can take many forms and there is no set number of cards or a specific set of rules it has to follow). Some of my favorite decks are the faerie deck and the self-care oracle deck, which I use on a daily basis (it’s all positive cards that tell you different self-care things, like meditate, do yoga, take a bath, etc.)

That oracle deck was the gateway into my lifelong fascination around tarot and readings. Tarot has always both mystified and interested me (and ok, in the name of total honesty – yes, they intimidated me). Last year, I took a tarot class one evening, but it left much to be desired and was not quite what I was expecting. It wasn’t very informative, and it was definitely very abbreviated (though, to their credit, it was only an hour one-off class). So this year, as I’ve been exploring deeper into spirituality, I thought October was the perfect to reconnect to that passion and get a real tarot reading done!

My wonderful friend Brooke of Wandering Souls Collective does tarot readings, so we sat down for a session. I had never done a one-on-one myself, but I had gone with friends who had before (check the last part of this post from our Nashville trip)! A part of me had always been a little worried: what if I got bad news? What is the intuit saw something really scary about my future? What if..what if. But you can’t go into it with that mindset, because you get what you give. If you’re putting out those negative vibes during a reading, that’s what the energy of the cards is going to reflect (helloooo, Law of Attraction 101)! Once I understood what tarot actually was, and how it worked, it made total sense, and I was no longer intimidated.

So first, I just wanted to break down what tarot is, in the most basic & quickest way possible. A tarot deck is comprised of 78 cards, each with its own symbolism and story. It is a type of divination ("the practice of seeking knowledge of the future or unknown by supernatural means") that can be used to intuit things going on in your life, things that you may have dealt with in the past, or things that will be coming to you in the future. Biddytarot.com sums it up beautifully: "Tarot is the storybook of our life, the mirror to our soul, and the key to our inner wisdom."

Traditional tarot is probably what first comes to mind when you think of it: the intricate cards with things like the hanged man or the lovers on them and maybe some mention of cups or swords. These are aspects of the 2 different types of cards that make up tarot: the major and minor arcana. Without going into a whole deep dive on what all the cards mean, just know that the major arcana are the “biggies” (these are the cards like the lovers, the fool, etc.) – those prominent messages that come through that essentially mean a little more and carry more weight than the minor arcana cards (cups, pentacles, wands, etc.). But there are so many different types of tarot decks – literally something for every personality & interest (everything from artsy and beautifully hand-drawn decks to cat meme decks). The power lies in how you use them.

My reading began by having a question in my mind about what I needed more clarity about. This could be anything – what do you need to focus on right now? How can you find happiness in your current situation? Should you take that big leap of faith and move across the country? The question should be clear and concise – you don’t want something too detailed/specific or too broad. Brooke then shuffled her deck and knocked on it a few times (she says this is to “wake up” the energy of the cards). Then she did her spread and pulled 3 cards. How the cards come out also have meaning: sometimes they are reversed when turned over, which means something different than if they were right side up. Without going into too much detail, I will say my reading was very spot on and aligned with what I had currently been focusing on (or lack thereof) and what I needed to do next. The more focused you are on your question, and the more attuned you are with the present moment and current energetic state, the stronger and more meaningful your reading with be.

After my reading, I interviewed her about the process and tarot in general; just some things I thought she might want the public to know about the subject to quell any fears or misconceptions about it.

1. How long have you been doing tarot?
I have been doing taro for myself for over 5 years. I started reading for others a little over 3 years ago.

2. What brought you to it/how did you get started?
It was around the time of my spiritual awakening and one of my friends brought over the original Rider-Waite tarot deck and a pendulum. My first reaction was one of uneasiness of the unknown and all the things I’ve been brainwashed to believe about divination and its origins. I quickly learned taro is just a simple, harmless way that we can connect with our guides, ancestors, higher selves, and yes even Jesus on a daily basis.

3. How would you explain tarot or what would you say to someone who thinks it’s “bad”?
I actually had this conversation with my mother yesterday. I simply told her I respect what she believes, but I don’t agree. I invited her, when she’s ready, to come have an honest conversation with me about tarot. Once you realize tarot is simply an energy exchange between you the cards in your higher power, there’s nothing to be afraid of there.

4. How has it impacted your life?
Tarot reading has brought me a tremendous sense of empowerment and belonging. There’s no feeling quite like reading a stranger extremely accurately and watching their reaction. Also, with my spiritual business, people literally show up just for me being my most authentic self and that’s really beautiful. When my fiancĂ© and I were just friends (and we really were for the longest time), when I started catching feelings I would ask my cards about us and always either get the sun or the lovers [cards].

5. What’s the one thing you want people to most understand about working with tarot?
There. Are. No. Bad. Readings! I think a lot of people come to tarot readings expecting to hear bad news, but tarot is an energy exchange between reader, cards, spirit team, etc, and you! Try to come into it with “I’m so grateful I get to receive Divine guidance.” Tarot readings are simply guidance on what’s coming next. We can always change our cards!

I definitely recommend booking a session with Brooke if you’re interested (she offers several different types via online or zoom) or you can check out her YouTube channel for videos! Not only is she a super positive and gifted person, but she is adept at readings, and no doubt you will come away from your session having gained some new insight! It’s such a powerful tool that we can use to access wisdom and find some focus & clarity in our present situation. Just don’t be afraid of what tarot is and take a chance!

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