My Relationship with Tarot So Far
by Charnjit Bains 14th December 2015
To me, the tarot is an archetype of life and represents all of the situations that life throws at us. I feel it is merely the external mirroring the internal as is pretty much everything in our lives. I find it to be a great personal development and counselling tool.
Having briefly dabbled with tarot as a teen, it wasn't until 10 years ago that I really connected with tarot cards. I actually started with a pack of angel cards for some guidance and inspiration (I wasn't ready for tarot). When I found, at times much to my dismay yet at the same time intrigue, that the angel cards were telling me what I needed to hear (not always what I wanted to hear), I felt I wanted more detail. Queue tarot cards... but.... I was still "scared" of them. So I decided to buy a small book of the traditional tarot card meanings along with a pack of regular playing cards and learned the meanings that way. (I was later told by a tarot tutor that that was the hard way of doing things, but then I do tend to do things a bit upside down, back to front and inside out!) I also later found out that this is known as cartomancy.
Then I was in a new age shop looking for more angel cards and was really drawn to a pack of cards called the medicine woman tarot. The energy didn't seem as intense as other decks so I went with my intuition and bought them. I worked with these cards intuitively, building a relationship with them by looking at each one individually, meditating with each one, reading the accompanying messages/exercises in the workbook that came with them. Sometimes I would sit out in the garden with them to get a deeper connection.
After that intial deck, I was hooked. It was to be the first of many decks that crossed my path - I became a bit of a "tarotholic" absorbing as much as I could, buying decks here, there and everywhere. The universe obligingly met this need as I would find different decks in various bookshops, tucked away in remote corners, usally at a knock down price - thank you universe! Many of these decks I have since passed on to others and given away as it felt like the right thing to do.
I learned different spreads, studied the numerology and astrology associations, animal symbolism, colours, elements, characters, the list goes on and on. I'm still learning and that is what I love about the tarot, I never tire of it.
I have been very blessed to have also connected with some wonderful tarot teachers.
In 2008 I was fortunate enough to attend the tarot conference in London, with the masterclass being given by Rachael Pollock (author of 78 degrees of wisdom).
I have attended several workshops given by tarot master Avril Price who teaches at the college of pyschic studies.
In 2013 I was lucky enough to complete my diploma level training in tarot with Award winning author and tutor Tiffany Crosara (author of the Transformational Truth of Tarot)
I feel so blessed to be given all these wonderful opportunities to connect with people who (a) really know their stuff and are passionate about what they do and (b) take the time and energy to share.
My most recent tarot journey was one I undertook myself (I say myself, but it's me working with my guides) - a 78 day journaling experience with the animal wisdom tarot deck. I found it to be a great way to connect with a deck and really learn about it. I was amazed at what came through and I now have my own personal "tarot guide book" which I refer back to for continued guidance, upliftment and enlightenment.
So what I did was shuffled the deck, invoking and inviting them into my life for the next 78 days and in a blank lined book wrote the date for the next 78 days, a page per day. I then drew one card for each day just writing down the name of the card.
Each morning during my usual meditation session I would also meditate on the card and write down whatever came to me. I connect with a lot of songs and lyrics so I would jot those down as well.. If I felt drawn to learn more about the animal I would have a look online and write down my findings or look in a couple of books that I also have.
I was amazed at how much I could actually write and how it flowed. I also found that sometimes I started writing for the next few days so I just went with it and allowed it.
I noticed that there were clusters of meanings and themes for a few days or a week or so. Now when I look back at what I've written I wonder "Where did that come from?" so I know it's come from a higher place and through me not from me.
I found it to be a real empowering and healing experience.
For me, the tarot cards are an ally enabling me to help myself and others. Some people question the use of cards. I see it as a way of bringing spiritual insight into a material, tangible form that the client can see (if in person) or connect with via a phone/email reading. Many people who come for tarot readings have an affinity with and knowledge of the tarot themselves. Often clients will say to me, "I've been pulling that card too!" It's simply another form of validation and confirmation from the universe that we're on track. It doesn't tell us what to do because at the end of the day that's our own personal responsibility. It gives us insight and guidance - we as ever have freewill.
I hope that has given you some inspiration on how to get a deeper connection with the cards. I think that as long as you're working with the intent of the highest good of all concerned in accordance with the freewill of all, there is no right or wrong way to connect with the cards, it's finding what works for you.
If it brings a little bit of upliftment, empowerment and clarity into our lives, well that can't be a bad thing can it?
I will leave you with an extract of the journal that I feel I am able to share at this time. This is what came through for the three of feathers (three of swords)- GROSSBEAK journal entry:
(Song) - 3 is the magic number
It is often during times of stress and struggle, doom and gloom that we pull together, our heart centres and chakras are activated and we become more compassionate working for the greater good. Having a heart to heart. There is always room for love no matter what the external environment. We just need to connect to and activate our heart chakra, focusing red light/energy on our heart chakra to activate and strengthen it, remembering when we come from a place of true love, unconditional love it is without expectation. Sometimes it's just nice to be nice and that in itself is reward enough, that is when we feel that warm glow (red?) in our hearts. Releasing past wounds and hurt, let bygones be bygones. Look for the good and beauty in everything.
Wishing you much love, light and healing,