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|The Empress from the Mythic Tarot, the deck|
I learned on. Traditionally, she is the Great
Mother, Demeter and the source of creation.
She is what brings us the seasons. But intuitively,
you might decide nature holds the key, someone is
pregnant, that it's time to harvest all you've
been working on, that energy is bubbling up
within someone...whatever you see in the picture.
It actually does much more. It brings you on a journey through issues and situations in your life and helps you make better informed decisions. Confining tarot to the narrow bounds of "fortune telling" would not be the only naive assumption I would make about this ancient art, skill and spiritual practice.
As you might already know, each of the 78 tarot cards in a deck comes with a general meaning attached to it and a picture on the card. I thought all I needed to do was memorize the meanings of 78 cards and that would be enough. So I set about memorizing the book descriptions for all 78 cards and a reading from me would mean I would cough back, word for word, the meaning I read in a book about a certain card.
Back then I owned maybe three decks and only used the one I memorized for readings. While that's one way to do it, I nonetheless felt stuck. Stuck, because I realized that the same card could have different meanings depending on what position it landed in a spread. I came to admire many other decks, some with meanings that didn't track to the meanings I memorized. I discovered that each card speaks in a unique language to the reader, so one person's Empress card may not be another person's Empress card. And I learned that there was a whole other use for the cards that I had never considered—as a means to access the intuitive voice within that bears knowledge beyond what is seen and known.
|The Empress from the Stolen Child Tarot is not|
pregnant. She embodies more the protective,
nurturing aspects of motherhood. Intuitively,
you might decide someone has "become their
mother" or is over-bear-ing...haha.
So to "fix" this problem, I got a deck of what are known as Soul Cards and read them exclusively for a couple of years. Soul cards have no fixed meaning. It's just a picture on a card and you have to come up with the meaning from inside you. By focusing on Soul Cards, I was able to re-train myself—to take the intellectualization out and put the intuition in. Today my readings reflect a combination of both...intended meaning and intuitive meaning.
More than that, though, these days I own hundreds upon hundreds of decks. Really. It's a pathetic display of hoarding and consumerism. And because I lead with intuition, because I have developed my own language with the cards and because I know what all the traditional meanings are, I I can read every single deck I own without ever having to pick up the book (though I do find book meanings very valuable, too.)
|This is a Soul Card. It has no name or|
meaning. Depending on the reading you might
decide it speaks of intuition, looking within,
open communication, radiating energy, being
at peace or whatever else strikes you.
I did consider giving up when all I knew was memorized meanings. I mean, all that work and it did nothing to make me "psychic". I still teach students that it's important to eventually memorize all the meanings. You'll do that anyway if you read enough. But I stress the intuitive hit. I'm amazed at how many people who have never even touched a tarot card before can accurately intuit the meaning just by looking at the picture on the card. It has never once failed in a class I've taught.
Which brings me to the bigger point for my "usual" readers. I wasn't born with any special gifts. Some people are and, while they still have to work at it, they don't have to work as hard. It flows like water. No, I was born with the base-model intuition package, just like most of you. So 25 years ago I was stuck. My intuition wasn't flowing at all. Today, however, I can be pretty flowy. And whether you believe this about yourself or not, you can be too.
We all have intuition. It's built into our DNA. And, just like a muscle, the more we work it, the more powerful and responsive it can be. You can learn to read tarot. You can learn to talk to dead people. You can learn to communicate with animals. You can learn to channel spirits. You can learn to have two-way conversations with God. The ability for all of that resides in your intuition and your ability to trust.
Over the centuries a lot of fear has been connected with things like tarot or mediumship. Certainly it's weird to have someone SEEM to get inside your head and tell you stuff they couldn't possibly know. But whether you choose to use it in that way or not, intuition is vital to our survival. It's how we "feel" something is wrong. It's how we "sense" a person standing behind us. It's how we suspect someone is lying to us. It's an absolutely critical part of our biology that can atrophy or be built up, just like a muscle.
Each of us acts as a receiver and transmitter of energy. That's why you can feel it when someone is angry or keeping something from you. Every single thought or action creates a wave of energy that can be detected. Everything is energy. So the stronger your ability to detect and read that energy, the better prepared you are to navigate the intricacies of life.
For anyone who would claim intuition in any form—whether it's aided by cards or bubbles up organically from within—is the Devil's playground, I submit that being blind to your intuition is the real Devil's playground. If you can't sense him knocking at the door, you may just let him in.