I’ve done tarot for more than 30 years with this deck and it was my first.
It is special to me and one of the longest things I’ve had in my possession. I say I use it in a non-tradition way. It doesn’t tell me the future and it doesn’t allow me to communicate with the dead. It’s a way for me to connect to another’s energy.
I’m not a card-carrying witch so please take all of this with a grain of salt. I don’t self-identify with any religion. There are things I do like tarot and smudging, and beliefs I have, that lean mostly toward wiccan. But nope, because I have a fundamental truth against organized religion and the concept of a God-Gods, Goddess-Goddesses, or any mix thereof. Nothing against those who do, it just doesn’t work for me. I believe in energy—existing equally.
Back to my deck. There have been countless people who have handled this deck. Countless readings have been done with this deck. Due to all the energies going through the cards, they need to be cleansed every now and then—daily, once a month, after a reading; I don’t have a set time frame and I don’t do all the things all the time. It depends on how “dirty” they feel.
1. I hold the deck a moment. Sometimes I do a shuffle or two. This gives me a minute to connect with the deck and think blankly of flowing, clearing energy.
2. I face the cards. I use both upright and reverse meanings so they get pretty mixed around. Facing them helps release built up energy to their original state. Sometimes, I’ll go as far as arranging them in the numerical order of when I first pulled them out of the box.
3. I spread them out in a circle face down in front of me. I try to get the circle of cards spread as evenly as possible. My OCD tendencies kick in so that every card is touching another card on each side and all are visible. This also gives me a chance to touch every card again.
4. I put a lit candle in the center of the circle. When I do this, the flame keeps any energy from sneaking back in. I love candles—maybe because my Aries sun sign. Not only can I stare into a flame, I get cravings to be around a fire.
5. I grab and lite my sage. I prefer a large leaf bundle of white sage but will use whatever kind is on hand. (Yes, sage is a usual item around and kept in the house.) There are various bundles you can use. Depending on the bundle, it could take a minute to lite or flames might suddenly pop up. Some people cannot stand the smell of sage to the point they may have head or stomachaches. So please use mindfully and find one that works for you.
6. Once the sage smokes, I swish it over top of cards. Not clock or counter-clock wise or in any specific way. I wave the sage and smoke from the inside out however I feel like moving it, smudging.
7. Once I feel the deck is good to go, I put out the sage. I blow out the candle and put it back away. (I’ve put the candle out with the sage but then the ends of my bundle got covered with wax.) I pick a spot to break the cards and fan them around the circle back into a stacked deck, still facing the same way. Again, I hold the cards for a moment.
8. Finally, I think blankly while shuffling and twisting the cards. This helps leave my cards in a fresh clean starting point for the next reading.
There are so many ways to use and theories surrounding tarot. One is to have a deck gifted to you. Another is to have a deck solely for yourself, one that only you touch. Some people pull a card a day or every week. There are various spreads too. It’s all very personal.
I mostly use the Celtic cross spread. Once in a while, I’ll do a quicky spread by drawing three cards: past, present, future. Even after three decades of practice, playing, and research—I’m no expert. There’s a certain book I use during readings that is almost as old as the deck. My best suggestion is to do your own research and create what works for you.
#tarot #witchyways #energy #tistheseason