Tarot Journaling – Use Your Authentic Voice

tarot journalsHello Beautiful Tarot People,

Tarot journaling is a hot topic right now, which is quite exciting for me since its one of my favorite activities. So I thought I would jump in with a couple of my own thoughts about this very fun and rewarding practice.

One of the hardest and most important things that I learned about journaling is that I needed to find and use my own authentic voice when I wrote about the cards.

For a long time I found myself mimicking what I had read in books and filling journal page after journal page with flat recitation.

The end result was that I wasn’t connecting with the cards much better and I experienced quite a bit of frustration. Worst of all I started to get bored of journaling. Then one day I had an Ace of Swords moment and I realized that I needed to stop writing like I was trying to create an academic text and start writing like I was talking to my best friend, which if you are an introvert like me isn’t far from the truth since your journals can easily become your best friends and closest confidants.

Jounal and The High Priestess Card from the Bohemian Gothic Tarot Deck by Baba Studio

Journaling with the High Priestess from the Bohemian Gothic Tarot

So instead of droning on about “The High Priestess is the guardian of wisdom and the keeper of knowledge.” which is true, but pretty bland, I started writing more casually. I scribbled with more freedom and enthusiasm. I took notes about how cards made me feel. I tossed in expletives and exclamations. I associated cards with my own experiences and contemporary symbols. I gushed about the art, or how excited I was when certain cards showed up in my personal readings. I went on diatribes about how aggravating the court cards were or how exasperating it was that I couldn’t figure out why the Five of Pentacles was stalking me. I stopped being afraid of sounding silly. I stopped censoring myself.

I believe that Journaling needs to be that way to be effective. It should offer you freedom, a place to play with ideas and associations and symbols. It should be a joy to do, a glorious adventure. If its not, try something different. Experiment. You will know when you are doing it “right” because it will flow and feel exciting.

Until next time…tarot and journal on. πŸ™‚

Deck-a-Week Challenge: Week 1 – Morgan-Greer

Blessed Morning Tarot Lovers, MG moon fool 9

I am really excited because I just finished up the first week of my Deck-a-Week Challenge. I want to let you know right away that this is not an original idea. I modeled my challenge after Raecine Ardis Owl Moon’s Monthly Deck Challenge and I want to make sure she gets all the credit for this fabulous exercise.

The essence of the challenge is that you choose one deck that you want to get better acquainted with and use it exclusively for an entire week. For those of us who have an extensive collection of decks or who just bought a new deck, this is a great tool for really connecting with a deck that you want to get to know better.

morgan greer

For my first week of the challenge I used the Morgan-Greer Tarot. I just purchased it and I wanted to connect with it right away. I spent a little time each day looking through the cards, just enjoying the art. I used it every morning for my personal daily draw. I took it with me to use during tarot related outings, like a local tarot meet-up I went to last week. I used it for a couple personal readings during the week and also for doing tarot study exercises. I used Morgan-Greer for all my client readings too, though that certainly isn’t necessary, but I felt drawn to and the deck communicated wonderfully well for those readings. When I wasn’t using the deck I left it out on my altar so it could continue connecting with my energy.

MG Deck and CrystalAfter spending the week with the Morgan-Greer tarot I feel quite attached to it and even though I’m excited to move on to week 2 of the challenge and work with The Legacy of the Divine Tarot, I’m a little sad to be setting Morgan-Greer aside for a bit. We got on so well. πŸ™‚

If you’re trying to get to know a new deck or reconnect with an old one, I would highly recommend that you try this out, even if you just use one deck for one week, I think its a worthwhile practice.

Best Wishes

Single Question Tarot Exercise

As a follow up to the Single Card Tarot Exercise that I posted earlier in the week, I have the Single Question Tarot Exercise for you guys today. I was all about tarot exercises this week. πŸ™‚

universal rider waite deck

So for this exercise we are essentially doing the opposite of what we did for the Single Tarot Card Exercise. Instead of coming up with several different questions and using one card to answer them all, we are going to select one question and use several different cards to answer it. Shall we begin?

Just as a reminder, this is only an exercise, not a reading.

First off decide what question you want to use.Β I used the question “How can I Improve my Relationship?” from the exercise I posted on Thursday. Once you have chosen your question, shuffle your cards. As I was shuffling I stated my intention, that I wanted to receive cards that would give me the best practice possible. Once your cards are shuffled select one. Use that card to answer the question you chose. Challenge yourself to see how many layers of meaning you can get out of that single card. When you are tuned in to your intuition its amazing how much information you can get from just one little tarot card. Next, set your first card aside and select another one. Use that second card to answer the same question. Repeat this process as many times as you like, but don’t rush through it. Take time with each card to see how much depth of meaning you can find.

Here is what the exercise looked like when I did it. I selected five different cards and the first card I received was…

Card #1: The Hanged Man:
My guess is right now you feel stuck, like your hands are tied and no amount of struggling will help. So stop struggling. See what you notice when you hang quietly and observe the situation. The solution will come to you.

Card #2: Four of Swords:
Rest your mind. Take a break from all those thoughts that are telling you that something is wrong. Make some time for yourself, to focus on yourself. You will be amazed how self care and becoming a healthier individual creates an environment where a healthy relationship can grow and become strong.

Card #3: Five of Swords:
Things may be too competitive in your relationship right now. You are putting yourselves in a position where there can only be one winner, which means someone loses and in a partnership if one person loses both people are losing something. I’m guessing there has been a lot of arguments and verbal sparring. Time to set aside the blaming and winner-takes-all attitudes and focus on a course of resolution that isn’t polarizing. Set the egos aside and come together humbly with the intention of finding a real solution which will support both your needs and the needs of you as a cohesive unit.

Card #4: Six of Wands:
I’m getting a sense that one of you has achieved something recently and is currently receiving a lot of accolades and attention because of it. Unfortunately that may leave the other person in the relationship feeling ignored or left out. The best thing to do in this case is t open a dialogue about it, find a way to celebrate this milestone together. Make sure that appreciation for the supporting partner is expressed. Make some time to reconnect.

Card #5: Strength:The time may have come to get to know eachother on a deeper level. Go below the surface. It takes a great deal of courage to let someone else see your shadow and your scars, but the bond will grow stronger and the connection will be deeper if you do.

One thing I noticed with this exercise was that by the third and fourth card the interpretations came very easily, I got tapped into my intuition and was really on a roll. Did any of you experience that? I hope you did, it was very empowering. πŸ™‚

PS~ For a little change of pace next week I’m going to be doing a single card tarot reading every morning (starting with Monday and going through Sunday) and posting it here at The Tarot Parlor. I’m excited. πŸ˜€

Single Card Tarot Exercise

I discovered this exercise in a book by Barbara Moore and its a great tool to learn the many ways of interpreting a single tarot card.

deck

To start, come up with a list of questions to ask the tarot,Β  5Β  or 6 is a good number, but if you can think of more, fantastic. The list doesn’t have to be questions you actually have, we aren’t doing a reading, just an exercise to get to know the cards better, so they can be questions anyone might ask. This was the list I used (feel free to use these if you like.):

  • What can I do to improve my chances of getting a job soon?
  • What will be most helpful for me to do in order to find love?
  • How can I discover my highest spiritual path?
  • How can I overcome what is currently blocking me?
  • What can I do to improve my relationship?

written questionNote: You may notice that I framed my questions in a way that focuses on receiving advice and taking action, rather than predicting an outcome. I find that it is much more helpful and empowering to ask for guidance so that you can go into the world and manifest the outcome that you want, rather than just asking for an arbitrary outcome that you have no influence on. I believe that its a good idea, even in exercises, to practice forming questions this way.

Back to the exercise…

Once you have your list of questions shuffle your cards however you like. If you want, ask the tarot to provide you with the card that will be the best teacher as you go through the exercise. This will give you the opportunity to state your intention, another part of tarot work which I believe is very important. Once you have shuffled thoroughly select a card in whichever manner you prefer. Use that card to answer each of the questions you have listed. Notice how the meaning of the card changes based on the type of question you are answering. Notice whether the card changes from positive to negative, or negative to positive with the different questions. Which answers come easy? Which are harder to figure out? Are there any that you can’t figure out at all? What methods help the answer come more easily (deep breathing? having a dialogue with the card? closing your eyes and visualizing the card? meditating on the card etc.)

IMG_20131114_144632 When I did this exercise IΒ  got the Five of Pentacles. Apparently the tarot felt like it would be most helpful to give me a challenge, because using this card was quite challenging. This is what my answers looked like:

  • What can I do to improve my chances of getting a job soon?
    It appears that you may not have many resources of your own, so it could be beneficial to ask for help. If you aren’t good at writing a resume find an online resume tutor. Check with your local employment office for workshops or classes on resume writing and interviewing strategies.
  • What will be most helpful for me to do in order to find love?
    Work on your growth as a charitable, compassionate person. Consider volunteering, doing service for those in need, soup kitchens, charity organizing. Its a great way to strengthen positive qualities in yourself and to meet people.
  • How can I discover my highest spiritual path?
    Be humble and accept people where they are in their life circumstances and on their life’s path.
  • How can I overcome what is currently blocking me?
    You may be stuck in a loop of poverty thinking, or feelings of deficiency. Trust yourself and that what you have to offer is valuable.
  • What can I do to improve my relationship?
    It looks like financial situations may be forcing both of you to focus so much on the day-to-day logistics of life, perhaps working extra hours, or picking up a second job, that you are missing out on eachother. Consider where your relationship is lacking and see if you can dedicate some time to working on those areas together.

You can repeat this exercise with as many cards as you like, theΒ  whole deck if you feel motivated, though that may take a couple days worth of practice. If there is a particular question that you just can’t answer with a given card, come back to it later with fresh eyes, but do come back to it.

I hope everyone found the exercise helpful. Feel free to comment and let me know what you thought.