Something I didn’t mention I’d been working on last year was gaining a qualification in tarot reading from the London School of Astrology. My own family thought it was weird, so I couldn’t be dealing with any further opinions on this whilst I was studying, I wanted to focus on the course. My relationship with all things mystical can only be described as complicated; I’m sceptical about mediums and magazine horoscopes, but appreciate the more in-depth art of astrology when it comes to plotting birth charts. And whilst I don’t think I’m psychic, I’m in tune with an unexplainable sense of feeling things that are about to happen. I’ve always enjoyed the theatre of tarot readings, and been fascinated with tarot’s history – it’s been popular around the world for centuries. Tarot started out in the 1400’s as a parlour card game, which is why they have four suits like playing cards. It wasn’t until the 1800’s when mystical-magical loving Victorians attributed occult-like powers to the cards to predict the future, and whilst I have nothing against tarot readers who use them for precise fortune telling, I personally think life has too many variables to predict anything with certainty. I was surprised just how much my tarot class involved learning how to structure and tell a story, we even did class exercises where we’d go round taking turns to tell parts of a story we made up together. It was more like creative writing workshops I’d been to. Whilst there’s certainly a lot of information to study and remember (there’s 78 cards, each with two sets of meanings depending on if they’re dealt reversed or not), the key things with learning to read tarot are being a good listener, and skilled in interpreting the cards to answer questions in a way that’s entertaining or meaningful for the person having the reading.
As it’s the start of a new year and I saw so many fellow bloggers expressing their goals and dreams for 2018, I thought I’d do a mini-reading for some of my faves – getting them to ask the tarot a question of significance. When I do a face to face readings I get the person to transfer their energy onto the cards by shuffling them and picking cards they’re drawn to, and with a full length reading I examine 5-10 cards. As these lovely ladies are scattered around the UK, I asked them to pick three numbers between 1 and 78, and each time I did a reading I shuffled and counted out the cards, pulling out their chosen numbers. I feel that this method still gives people the power to select at random something they feel drawn to. I’ve split the readings in to two blog posts so it’s not too long a read. Maybe if you fancy having a reading yourself I can make it a series?…
Lynsay from Lynsay Loves
“What talent or skill do I have that I need to use more of this year?”
Lynsay’s cards are the Ace of Rods, The Lovers, and the Four of Cups. Interestingly the rod cards (known as wands in some packs) are all about untapped potential, suggesting Lynsay may feel she has a particular talent or skill that she’s not making the most of. On the other hand, this combination of cards may indicate that the talent in question is spotting and taking opportunities, and Lynsay needs to do more of this in 2018. The Ace of Rods is a powerful card connected to new beginnings, and a symbol of something being offered from above, which doesn’t necessarily mean from God if you’re not religious. The branch symbolises an opportunity the universe is offering Lynsay, and the fact that the branch is still flowering shows it’s not too late to reach out and grab this, though it will need to be nurtured if she want to keep it flourishing. The Lovers card in this sequence either means that a significant opportunity Lynsay grasps will include her partner, or that an increase in creative activity will result in a need to find balance between love and work. This card reminds Lynsay that unleashing creativity does not mean abandoning relationships, it means gaining a stronger sense of self within them by nurturing personal development. Interestingly, like the Ace of Rods, the Four of Cups also features a mystical offering, a cup of opportunity. The person already has three cups, but feels unfulfilled, it’s unclear whether their eyes are open or closed – symbolising we can choose to see opportunity when it presents itself, or to be so engrossed with feeling unfulfilled with what we have that we miss it.
Summary – Sometimes in life we feel others have opportunities which pass us by. The Four of Cups is guiding Lynsay to strengthen her talent for being the maker of her own success, whilst the Ace of Rods reminds her that she has abundant creativity to tap into and nourish by grabbing opportunities. In two of her cards she’s being offered a gift, which I think is a powerful message from the Tarot to reignite that talent and make the most of it in 2018, letting love give her strength but knowing her ultimate strength comes from herself, which in turn improves both her romantic and professional lives.
Jemma from Dorkface
“Will my biggest hope for 2018 go well?”
Jemma’s cards are the Knight of Rods, Justice, and the Two of Cups. Well, here comes the Knight of Rods, charging in to battle, his weapon poised – knights represent work, and this card is about ambition, drive and desire. Jemma has something specific she wants to achieve in 2018, and the Knight reminds her to be bold and warrior-like as she starts her journey, charging in on a metaphorical horse. However, the knight has a tendency to act before he thinks, and can sometimes be too boisterous in his pursuit of what he desires – the tarot is telling Jemma to battle full speed ahead, but with a gentle warning to take a measured approach, having done her research first. This is reinforced by the Justice card, which reminds us it’s a mistake to overlook details, and to remember that success comes when we’re being truthful to ourselves about how we genuinely feel at each part of the journey to reaching a goal. The Two of Cups excites people hoping a marriage proposal is on the cards, as it signifies a new or deeper union between two people. For Jemma, this could also signify a union between her and a business partner or a mentor who is going to help her achieve her dream. This is an extremely positive card as the union is harmonious and respectful, helping both parties become better versions of themselves. Like Justice, this card is about karma – you get back what you give out – reminding Jemma to invest wisely in this new union, whatever it may end up being, and to nurture it to make it grow.
Summary – The cards are telling Jemma that passion and drive will help her achieve her goals, her enthusiasm and courage will increase her chances of success, but she needs a clear plan of attack. She may have a new work partner or assistant helping her achieve her goal, or a mentor who will strengthen her belief in herself and help her make connections. Justice serves as karma, reminding Jemma of the spiritual consequences of our actions, not just to others but to ourselves – we must truly believe we can achieve what we set out to do, or it could lead to setbacks. As 2018 starts the Tarot is suggesting Jemma sits down, asks herself some serious questions about how she can achieve her goal, and plans well before giving the execution every ounce of passion she has.
Rhianna from Rhianna Olivia
“In 2018 should I go freelance or stay in my current job?”
Rhianna’s cards are the Knight of Pentacles, the Seven of Cups, and the King of Pentacles. Knights represent our work lives, and this particular knight is very methodical and rigorous. He’s almost a perfectionist and would never leave a job half done. The Knight of Pentacles is connected to responsibility, perhaps signifying the change in responsibilities Rhianna would have by becoming her own boss, and guiding her to take charge in a level-headed way. On the other hand, this card might be showing Rhianna that staying in her own job is a different way to be responsible about earning money – this card is often about staying where you are and making gradual process, waiting for a later time to switch lanes. The Pentacles are about how we shape our outer surroundings and prosper, so it’s interesting that two came up here, and Rhianna may not be overjoyed to know Pentacles represent being methodical and slightly cautious. The King of Pentacles represents fulfilment and financial success, the end result of following our dreams and working hard. He is there to remind Rhianna that whatever path she chooses, by adopting a mature and responsible approach to her work she can achieve great things. Which isn’t a promise she’ll be wealthy, there’s more than one way to be rich, and the King of Pentacles knows fulfilment from hard work is a huge reward in itself. In contrast with two cautious pentacles cards, the Seven of Cups is pure fantasy. In a dreamlike haze seven cups present seven ‘prizes’, each symbolising something different. This card could be allowing Rhianna to indulge in daydreams of leaving the rat race behind, perhaps being drawn to the victory wreath, or the cup of treasure and riches. Whilst daydreams sharpen creativity and improve our confidence to make things happen ‘for real’, the cups filled with unpleasant things such as a snake ready to bite remind us to rein in our fantasies and stay on a more focused path if we want to achieve success. In life we need to be clear about which options are real for us, and which are pure fantasy – the Seven of Cups reminds Rhianna to be realistic and make some concrete plans for a possible life change, perhaps by getting some advice on how she’d manage her finances if she went freelance.
Summary – The Seven of Cups is the complete opposite to the Knight of Pentacles, which is probably frustrating for Rhianna – one is about staying put and working gradually, the other is about letting your imagination take flight and blossoming. The King of Pentacles is the decider, suggesting Rhianna should choose the option that nourishes her soul the most and will give the the best return for her work – not necessarily money, remember he’s all about personal fulfilment too. The king wants Rhianna to live as though she is already a success – not by spending above her means, but by continually reminding herself of her achievements and what ‘riches’ they’ve brought her.
Alice From Alice Red
“Is My YouTube channel actually going to go somewhere this year?”
Alice’s cards are the Three of Swords, the Ace of Swords, and the Eight of Cups. Swords are connected to mental struggles or conflicts, either ones with ourselves or with others. Two have come up here, suggesting Alice’s question is a source of negative anguish for herself. The Three of Swords has negative connotations – the heart (or a passion) is being pierced whilst clouds of doom circle overhead. Alice may feel that the effort she puts into her YouTube channel is not paying off and it’s breaking her heart a little bit. This card reminds us to be strong during periods of heartache, and to use setbacks as opportunities to learn and grow. If we become overly absorbed in what we deem to be failure, we find it hard to regroup and come back stronger. Which is not to say Alice’s channel is failing in any way, but the Tarot may be reminding her to frame her idea of ‘success’ in a different way. The Ace of Swords is much more positive, depicting the victory of coming through a negative period when we are strong and persistent. Our minds can make us prisoners when we have doubts, the Ace of Swords shows us how strong we can be when we don’t overthink, and we let creativity flow. The choppy seas at the bottom of the card are a reminder that negative thoughts are never far away, we need to rise above them and be more of a cheerleader to ourself. The Eight of Cups shows a person walking away from what they have, no longer being satisfied with the material world signified by the cups. This is a powerful image, it could represent Alice deciding to stop making YouTube videos if she feels she has not achieved the level of success she desires, or the Tarot could be telling her to not quantify success as something that can be measured with ‘riches’, perhaps subscribers or views in this case, and to walk away from the confines of feeling something needs to happen to ‘prove’ she’s a success.
Summary – The Eight of Cups shows us it’s okay to walk away from things in life, but in sequence with the other two cards, I feel it may be asking Alice to overcome the self-doubt or disappointment she has, and to re-frame the way she perceives success. The Eight of Cups reminds us that pessimistic thoughts can be useful, they help us stay true to ourselves and not indulge too much in fantasy, they can help us rethink what it is we want to achieve, and create a strategy to get there. Alice’s cards indicate her problem is not having a lack of talent, it’s purely mental, and 2018 will be the year she overcomes these thoughts to let creativity flow better and realise our creative efforts do take us where we want to go, even if this isn’t as fast or as obvious as we’d like it to be.
Laila from Tapeparade
“Which parts of my blog should I focus more on this year?”
Laila’s cards are The Hanged Man, The Magician, and the Seven of Pentacles. The Hanged Man can signify feeling stuck and metaphorically not going anywhere in life, or if you are content with life he can represent the positivity that comes from not taking action for a while, and allowing yourself to think and plan in order to make your actions have more positive outcomes. He isn’t being hung against his will, and is free to release his foot when he wants, he finds serenity in contemplation. Laila’s questions suggests she is auditing her blog to make a strategy, and The Hanged Man is guiding her to be more vulnerable, to think about what it is she actually wants to communicate to her readers, and to try seeing her blog from different angles – he finds that looking at things whilst upside down gives him a fresh perspective. This could mean Laila tries new things, or simply gets feedback from her readers about the sections they like the most. The Magician represents the fusing of wisdom and creativity, he channels knowledge and power from the universe through his staff, and uses it to create. He has all four Tarot suits on his table, representing the abundant physical and mental resources we can make available to ourselves, and he signifies creating a new cycle for yourself to accomplish your goals. This is an incredibly positive card, asking Laila to trust in her innate creativity to decide which parts of her blog to develop. The Seven of Pentacles shows a farmer surveying his abundant crops with pride. He knows it’s his hard work (and a little bit of luck) that gave him a successful return, and this could signify the rewards Laila could reap by putting in the groundwork this year and tending to her blog with consistency.
Summary – The Hanged Man suggests Laila needs to be calm in the knowledge that she doesn’t need to speed any decisions about her blog. We think of creating content as being a fast paced activity, but wisdom and clarity can come through patience, and make our creativity flow better in the longterm. His presence also suggests that Laila could work more on sections of her blog where she reveals her vulnerable side and shows the reader more of Laila as an individual with experiences to share. The Magician suggests Laila is entering a new phase with her blog, and after her period of contemplation will become incredibly inspired and resourceful. Laila can develop any part of her blog when she strategises, looks for resources (which could be anything from people to collaborate with, or stories from her past to tell), and puts renewed passion into her content. The Magician has also suggested the blog may have new sections, or a renewed look or style. Although he has signified a burst in creativity for Laila, the other two cards indicate success won’t come from quick fixes or hastily started projects that run out of steam quickly. Laila’s success will come from being slow and steady, working hard, but in a way that doesn’t sap her abundant creative energy.
Part two featuring bloggers who have already given me their questions and numbers will be up this week!