Tinkering with Tarot

>> Wednesday, April 28, 2010

It all started when I was browsing Amazon for books on creative inspiration. I came across the book entitled Tarot for Writers by Corrine Kenner. The reviews were mostly 5 stars, the content intriguing. At the same time, I picked out a tarot deck and both arrived within a few days.

But it only took me about thirty minutes of skimming the book and reviewing the cards to know this whole tarot card deal was no slam-dunk. There are 78 cards. The deck is split into major and minor sections called arcana. Each card has several meanings, which can change in relation to other cards drawn for a reading, how the reader or the person being read for interprets it.

Whoa - stop right there. I realized I was in way over my head. Yet, still very intrigued. My intuition was whispering...this is something you need, something you want, something that will be of great use to you in many different ways.

So I did what I always do when I want to learn something right and I want to learn it fast: I found a teacher. Actually in this case, teachers. I lucked out--found one woman where I live on the Central Coast of California (where I spend 1/2 my time) and one where I work in San Francisco (where I spend the other 1/2).

I've been regularly studying tarot for about 6 months now and haven't even grazed the depths of how much there is to know or learn, which is why I've been waiting to post on it. But, as I know from experience, there is no better way to learn than to utilize the skill, so here I am.

I thought I'd start with tarot birth cards, using my CP, Elisabeth Naughton, as my first victim volunteer.

First of all, what are birth cards?

Birth cards represent aspects about you based on your birth date, things that generally don't change from birth to death, no matter what happens in your life. Your tarot birth card represents your potential, qualities that will be helpful for you to develop throughout your life, aspects of your personality that are themes throughout your life, themes that show up again and again.

Elisabeth's birth card pair are: The Devil and The Lovers





















At first glance, these are pretty awesome cards for a romantic suspense writer, huh? HOT, bad-boy, some sizzling sexual tension. Yeah, that's all in her books. If you haven't read them yet, make sure to pick them up! Definitely 5-stars. (Her cover of the fresh release MARKED is eerily reminiscent of the Devil, btw.)
But let's look at how these cards relate to her personality, her life.

Together, The Lovers and The Devil know all the secrets of the visible universe, and can give the gift of harmonious power.

The Devil: sophisticated, ambitious and relentless; driven to possess and achieve; always competitive, every gain matched by an equal loss; practical and self-sufficient, happiness is in accomplishment.

The Devil's Challenges: The devil often signifies overindulgence from any "temptation" from food to sex to overspending. It is about hiding the dark side of oneself, remaining blind to one's weak spots. These unseen shadow aspects of ourselves makes us vulnerable to deviltry (temptation or wrong doing).

The Devil's Gifts: Functioning as Lucifer (light-bearer), the Devil shines light on our shadowed psyche, allowing us to take the opportunity to shed light on the games we've been playing to mask more uncomfortable emotions. The devil allows us the opportunity to incorporate our dark sides into our being and offers an inescapable path to wholeness.

The Lovers: young, fresh and curious; charmed by life and its possibilities; always connected to a living partner or a vibrant abstraction; all joy is in the sharing.

The Lovers Challenge: The Lovers can be about determining values and struggling with choices--innocence versus temptation; simplicity versus complexity. The Lovers can be naive and irresponsible, shallow and inconsequential, vain and deceitful. Their energy can be a storm in a teacup in which they are forever in danger of drowning.

The Lovers Gift: Union, balance, energy, flow, love, desire, passion, melding of heart and mind. The Lovers often signify a partnership with opportunity for personal growth. Joining forces enables us to cultivate possibilities not otherwise available.

So, E, what do you think? I see themes of temptation and choices here. Are those distinctive and or repeating themes in your life? Do you see other connections not mentioned?

Any other tarot enthusiasts out there who want to chime in here?

Any one else want a birth card reading? Just pop your birth month, day and year into the comments box and I'll see what I can work up.

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Remember: This is for fun folks. Tarot isn't about the cards telling you who you are or what the future holds for you. It's about challenging your way of thinking; to promote thinking differently or to divert the flow of your sometimes habitual ways of solving a problem. Every card tells a story and how you choose to use that story is up to you. Don't take things too literally or too seriously.

4 comments:

Elisabeth Naughton 7:44 PM  

Okay, my initial reaction to this is that it's a little woo-woo. However, looking closer...it's weird how perfect those cards are for me.

Aside from the fact the Devil card DOES look like the cover of MARKED, here's what I saw:

The Devil: sophisticated, ambitious and relentless; driven to possess and achieve; always competitive, every gain matched by an equal loss; practical and self-sufficient, happiness is in accomplishment.

Anyone who knows me knows I am highly competitive, driven beyond doubt and work hard at everything I do - whether that's writing or promotion or running/working out. That definition is definitely me.

As for the Lovers:

The Lovers: young, fresh and curious; charmed by life and its possibilities;

This is also similar to me. I tend to be one of those "glass is half full" people who sees the good in everything. Even when bad things happen, I'm quick to turn it into something good.

always connected to a living partner or a vibrant abstraction; I've been with the same guy since I started college. Always connected to a partner? Uh, yeah. Me.

all joy is in the sharing This is me too. Without someone to share all the highs with, I'm often left feeling lonely.

And the two cards together? The take away I get is that the devil's challenge is temptation, and those who know me know it's easy for me to quickly become obsessive about something. Balance is always a struggle for me. So it's kinda cool to see that one of the lovers' gifts IS balance.

Okay, I have to say I'm freakishly impressed. Way to go, Joan!

Icy @ IndividualChic IsaByrne 10:39 PM  

I've dabbled in Tarot and have just picked it up again after many years. An interesting use for the cards is to do a spread for your major characters. It can give you new ideas of where a plot line could go.

Icy @ IndividualChic IsaByrne 10:40 PM  

Oh, and what's the name of the deck you're using? It's very pretty.

Joan Swan 7:40 AM  

Hi Icy,

Yes, I'm thinking of doing that soon as I'm getting ready to embark on a new storyline. Will see how it goes.

This desk is the Guilded Tarot. I love it. It combines beauty with readability, many other cards are pretty but they don't "say" much if you know what I mean. But I also just received Shadowscapes and I have to say, they are absolutely gorgeous!!

Thanks for stopping by.

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