Ah, Spring—-time to clean out the winter cobwebs and let in the light. I created a tarot layout for just that energetic work. Enjoy it!
I've been in the throes of life and finding my tarot practice waning a bit. I know you all can relate--days when you want to pull a card, but how? When? For what? Sometimes I find myself in a place where I just don't want to know.
Burying my head in the sand never works. It simply wastes time. One of the times I most want to bury my head in the sand is Mercury Retrograde. Being misunderstood, having things go haywire, mixing up my navigational system is a logistical nightmare for a recovering control freak and perfectionist. It's those times when burying my head it in the sand or "not wanting to know" seem like the best idea in the world.
But avoiding tools that actually work for connecting me with Spirit and my deep wells of wisdom keeps me from peace. I need to remind myself that Tarot doesn't punish or judge--our interpretations do that! I do that! Tarot is a navigational guide and a map for moving forward. There are many times, though, that I know I am too tender, judgmental or prone to negativity to objectively read for myself. That is when I connect with another reader and trade. Tarot Share is borne out of that impulse to have a community of Tarot readers who get it.
Speaking of Mercury Retrograde, it is coming up on March 5th. Mercury goes retrograde three times a year. It shouldn't be surprising, and yet we all seem to dread it. I have developed crystals and vibrational support during Mercury Retrograde. I created this Mercury Retrograde preparation Tarot Layout to help you identify and work with issues that might arise during Mercury Retrograde.
You know how I love creating tarot layouts for the Wheel of the Year. I have something in the works for those of you who also work with the pagan Wheel of the Year—the equinoxes, solstices and cross-quarter holidays, plus all the moon cycles. I cannot wait to share it with y’all.
Of course, Imbolc is coming up, so I thought I would design a layout for the seeds beginning to stir within you. Imbolc is basically the halfway point between Yule (Winter Solstice) and Ostara (Vernal Equinox). This is the traditional time that candles are made, and the sheep begin birthing lambs (hence the name Imbolc, pronounced Im-olc, meaning ewe’s milk). The gift of the first milk might help sustain a family in the dark winter. Speaking of darkness, we begin to see the sun rising earlier and setting later. I mean, we hear that Yule is when the sun begins coming out earlier, but now is when we can really see it in action.
It is also traditionally the feast day of St. Brigid, or the Goddess Brigid. Her snake would rise from the soil to test the weather and tell us whether the winter would last for another 6 weeks or longer. (Sound familiar?) But the idea here is under the snow, the grass, the soil, the seeds planted deep in the autumn are beginning to stir. It looks calm and serene above, but the seeds are stirring into action and beginning to make their way toward the sun.
And the same for us. What seeds are beginning to make their way towards the light for you? This tarot layout seeks to understand what is happening below your surface. Let me know if you use this tarot layout and what you think of it.
How were your holiday gatherings? One of my Tarot friends sent me this hilarious cartoon for Thanksgiving, combining two things I love--laughing and Tarot. I have a great family and enjoy them very much. This was not always the way--my extended family dinners as a child seemed more like a blood sport. People leaving drunk and crying, yelling, dramatics, drinking, accusations. No one seemed to like each other, and I vowed as an adult to not be this way.
Holidays can be fraught with emotions--joy, grief, hurt, expectation, anxiety, sadness, loneliness--then add complicated family and friend relationships, and it is a formula for deep trauma. As I thought about this, I wondered how I would want to help my clients navigate the holiday family gatherings with my clients if they came to me for a Tarot reading. And I thought about how often in relationship disputes, I cannot see the trees through the forest. So, I created a Tarot Layout for Healing Friendships, Relationships & Family Dynamics. I created it so you can go deeper with shifting tension, for seeing a new perspective and for finding a way forward. I focused this layout on the person asking the question, because we can really only change us, right?
I think it would be useful to consider the cards that arise in certain positions. There are some relationships in which there is no path forward--this rift is permanent and important. Pay attention to the people on the card--is it a solitary person, or two people? Are you seeing cards of withdrawal or protection? Remembering that sometimes you are not at fault in the slightest, so how you move forward needs to be considered with that in mind. I'm going to print some of these out for Tarot Share, though it might not lend itself to a great group reading. This is really about our individual work with another person.
I just naturally do this layout on my daily reads. I always feel like I need some more insight on just past present and future, so I expand to include some Celtic Cross insights in this little six card draw.
Whenever I create a layout for Tarot, I think it is important to ask a question or at least know the area of life you are interested in learning more about. Often, three card layouts are like little selfies of our time period. I think of this three card layout as having been put vertically, so that each row is present, approaching and outcome.
I like to play with those rows--first row is really about all the influences on the present, including the past and some additional insights about what we cannot quite clearly see. This is all the energy around you right now. I often get questions about the card in the past...this card is about what part of your past is influencing the question asked, or the energy that you are bringing into the question you asked. In the Unknown position, you can use this as something influencing now, so it can be another thing from the past, or the obvious thing from the present you are ignoring. The Second Row is about what we are calling in, what is in our approaching influence. This energy is about what are current actions are calling to us. What I mean by that is that our energy attracts or moves us toward the next phase. This approaching are really helps us to understand where our energy is spiraling toward, and what situation we are setting up for ourselves. Of course, this approaching energy is really about how we get to the outcome of our question. So, the outcome stands alone in the third row as the final resting place of our question if nothing changes.
Hope you enjoy this. Love to see how you use this in your own practice!
New Moon is such a potent time for planting seeds, for setting intention, for taking stock. For me, the dark of the New Moon excites me. It seems so potent and full of potential for me. Plus, that inward reflection for me plays beautifully into my own introversion and need for alone time. I mean, this isn't isolation. It is solitude. It is time to check-in. I often do my most powerful readings during this time period, because I do it ready for release. Hell, the New Moon makes me sleep well, but also finds me cranky. I am not always good with too many personalities, so I pare things down. I connect with the cards, with Spirit, with my own needs.
I often do the Medicine Wheel Layout or even the Solstice layout, but recently, I have been doing this New Moon Layout I've been playing with. This is really potent for those who aren't really sure what energy they are really ready to call in at the New Moon. It is great for the question: Where should my attention be right now?
As always, please let me know how you like this layout and show me your readings. I am offering distance readings again, so please reach out if you are interested at email@example.com
The energy of Summer is upon us--that fire in our belly. In terms of the Medicine Wheel, we are facing South, the direction of Fire, of mystery, of passion and heat and action and creativity and, and, and....there is so much going on the South, it is no wonder we break a sweat. The South moves us from the airy East into the deep fires of the lower chakras--the root, sacral and solar plexus. This is where we ground, we create, we do. Red, Orange, and Yellow combine to create those flames of DOING.
Many tribes use the Horse as their symbol of the South. I certainly use her as my Southern Totem. She is the Great Sojourner, the Carrier of the Warrior and the Maiden, the traveler, the explorer, that fearless movement forward. We call in the energy in the East in Spring, and it flies overhead with the energy of Hawk, Eagle, even hummingbird (hummingbirds have been all over my land this year with her busy, fast dance.) These high fliers have the vision to align you, to see the bigger picture, to see the forest, but what that vision does is move you into South, where we actually do the dang thing we have been visioning. When I am in the South, I find myself creating all day, painting, sketching, playing guitar, singing, doodling. My creativity is awakened. Creativity and action begets more creativity and action. I am ready. I call on fire to burn away that which sit stagnant in my energy field. I call on fire to start me on my wild journey.
I move through the Medicine Wheel constantly--we all do...each day, year, and in the cycle of our life, we move through east, south, west, and north. Each morning, in my prayers, I call in the directions for healing and to guide my days. I use this model for my Tarot readings too. This isn't exactly a new layout, though I didn't "copy" it from another source. This is just how I have always intuitively done reading around the Medicine Wheel. I drew it up in a Tarot Layout that is shareable and useable. I thought we could try it next Tarot Share for our group reading.
I have really enjoyed creating tarot spreads around the seasonal energies this year. It has been such a challenge for me to think about what we need to know at different times of the year around these cycles. I connect with cycles and even created an oracle deck based on the different cycles we tap into through our life. It's not available yet. I just use it for myself. But I think about this so often when I do readings for my clients. First, what cycle of life are they in? What cycle of their year? What universal cycle are they in--what is the astrological or lunar cycle are all of us facing? This seems like such an important part of the work of reading energy to me.
Beltane, May 1st, is one of those important points on the Wheel of the Year. Spring is in full bloom--flowers are blossoming and the world radiates a thousand shades of green in every corner. The lightness seeps into us all. The Solar Horned God earns his name and is ready to mate with the Lunar Goddess. This is where the idea of Lusty May comes in. We certainly understand Spring Fever and we really enjoy a time of fertility and growth. We celebrate the light, the sexuality and creativity that lies within that sacral energy. It is within us. Now, how are you expressing this time?
I create these tarot spreads to help us easily tap into the energetic and magickal work important around these different points on the Wheel of the Year and in our life. It is such a powerful time to check-in with a relationship or partnership you have. And if you are more interested in a creative project, you can also think of that birthing out of the same energy of Beltane. Remember you can do this reading at any time you want to check in with a relationship or project of any kind, not just Beltane. Let me know how you enjoy this layout.
So much of this energy of January is about the two full moons that act mark the beginning and ending of the month. The second blue moon on January 31st is super special--it is a blood moon, a full lunar eclipse and then of course the Blue Moon.
Tarot is a perfect way to tap into this energy and use it to manifest your beautiful goals. This Leo Blue Moon is one of bringing in and setting intentions around some long-term goals and dreams. I mean, these are those dreams you dare not speak aloud, the ones that feel too wildly awesome to imagine. I used to be all about magical thinking, and fear of jinxing my good fortune. Pshaw!! Not anymore and not since so many of the dreams I dare not speak aloud have come to be. I am living my wildest dreams (and I'm still uncomfortable sometimes, by the way. The discomfort just stays for so little time, and makes me too curious to suffer for too long!). So, what is that dream for you? Are you so out of touch of your childlike awe and curiosity that you forget?
Tarot is great for uncovering your subconscious and superconscious selves. So, tap into it with this layout, and let me know how it goes!
Creating Tarot spreads has become one of my new favorite past times. It is amazing when, as a reader, you have that deep shift in your bones about Tarot. You go from doing everything by the book (whichever book you have given authority to in that week) to playing with your cards. To realizing they are in relationship with you and you can bend and ask and instruct and prescribe how and what messages you need. This is so powerful when you create a Tarot spread.
You literally start with a question: What information is most useful for me right now? What will help my soul grow? And for me, one of the things I find most powerful is: How can I tap into the seasonal energies to create a layout that helps me grow spiritually? This has been my goal in the last few months with these new layouts I am creating...designing layouts that move us through the Medicine Wheel and the Wheel of the Year.
Every month, I host a Tarot Share at Alta View Wellness Center. We get together and read for each other. This has been 18 months strong, and I'm so proud of the community we have created. We decided to do a Tarot Share Costume Party this year for our monthly Tarot Share, and to come dressed as our favorite card. We actually chose cards last month out of the Majors and Court Cards, and I pulled the Devil. I cannot wait to get all Devilish for our group. (Incidentally, as a Capricorn, the Devil is my card, and it happens to be my card of the year too. Isn't Tarot AMAZING?!?)
ANYWAY, the Tarot Share works like this. It is for other Tarot readers. We gather and exchange readings. Usually, we get to exchange one on one, then most of the time, we do one large reading for the whole group. We often do a reading around the seasonal energies, or the moon cycle. It has been amazing to see how much each of us relate to the big reading. So, for Samhain, I wanted to create a layout that both taps into the ancestral work of Samhain and the idea of releasing and bringing in. So, I thought you might enjoy this too for your Samhain gatherings. Let me know how it goes and how this layout worked for you.
As a Tarot Reader, I am privy to the most interesting questions. People often come to me in places of confusion about their relationships--marriages, lovers, clandestine affairs, friendships, frenemies, parental/child relationships, co-workers. When we feel strong emotions on either end of the spectrum, we know something important is happening within the relationship. Deep wounds AND deep healing come from relationships.
There is no mistake that the Lovers card of the Major Arcana features Archangel Raphael over the lovers (the Devil's dark card comes from the same imagery as the Lovers), and that in the Minor Arcana, the Two of Cups, has the Caduceus--the two snakes wrapped around the staff of Hermes has represented Medicine and Healing for a long long time.
At times, healing in relationship confounds us. We don't always understand why someone provokes such strong reactions in us. Why someone's benign comment leads us to anger and another person's same comment sounds comforting. Or why we continue to attract and have the same types of relationships. Or why no matter how much therapy or talking or healing we do, we cannot repair the relationship with our mother, or father. When we get to the end of the line, we often ask questions like "What am I missing here? What is my lesson with this person? Do I have past life karma with this person?" People ask this if they feel deep, immediate love and connection for someone and if they feel the other extreme--revulsion, anger or deep hurt.
This layout came about after a reading with a friend of mine. She asked me what her past life relationship was with her husband. They had been together for over twenty years. She wondered why she felt so obligated to the marriage and to him. She asked if we could find this out via the Tarot Cards.
Sure. Why not? I had never asked such a question of the Tarot before, but the Celtic Cross is incredibly versatile. As I laid it out, I began changing the meanings of the positions and moving some of the cards around. After I was done, I realize I had naturally created a sacred spiral. I had done another reading like this connecting with someone's passed over loved one (I'll post this layout soon). In crystal gridding, I use a spiral for past life grids, to open to the deep knowledge within, like unscrewing a lid of the jar to view the past life.
We have done this spread many times in Tarot Share, playing with questions for each other to see how this layout works. One night, we did this for everyone at Tarot Share, looking at our past life karma with each other. It was fascinating to find out that when we ask about those people who have created deep love and deep anger/resentment/fear, we often get lots of Major Arcana cards. We see archetypes. We see reversals (lots of reversals). We see a spiritual journey, suffering. Do not be surprised if you see these kinds of things in this layout. It may be disturbing, but it also validates that the strong emotions you feel. Major Arcana always deals with soul journey. When we would read for each other (people who get along and often only interact during Tarot Share), we had all Minor Arcana and not too many reversals. It is not that we didn't share a past life, but that it was easy and light, and often in the context of a village or family environment where our souls and soul work is more removed from each other.
In the best case, these cards reveal their deep past life meanings to us easily during this layout. It can be hard to discern exactly what is going on in Past Life readings, but try to expand on what you already know of the card. And have fun playing with this layout. Comment here or on one of the social media platforms where I share this layout about how it worked for you. I'd love to hear!
One of the gifts of Tarot is how versatile and beautifully flexible it can be with our own spiritual work. Tarot flows through our own journaling and work in whatever way we need it. I've been journaling my daily Tarot readings again, after taking a wee hiatus, and it reconnects me to my Higher Self, my guides and my daily self-care regimen.
As a professional Tarot reader, I sometimes fall out of the habit of journaling. When I connect with Spirit for other people, I end up taking something away that I also needed to hear. And to be honest, sometimes I get burnt out from the cards. I know what they mean, so I'll throw a reading, then look at it. "Meh, yeah, I know. Quit harping on me, Tarot." But the truth is--Tarot has so much nuance and layers of meaning that this thought is just me being lazy. When I journal, I take a new deck, and use the book, or I go really in-depth with one card in relation to my question.
The best part of this new journaling journey is that I have been creating so many NEW layouts for myself and others. This time, though, I am creating graphic layouts to help others go deeper with their cards.
Of course, this new eclipse energy is kicking my ass. I mean, really. So much shadow has reemerged, and I realize now that this eclipse energy emerged for me in June, and has grown darker and deeper through this summer. We are at a culmination of release energy. I created an eclipse tarot layout at look at this shadow work. This layout can be used at any new moon, not just eclipse new moons. It is about going deeper with your own discomfort. One thing I always find confounding is this idea of Letting It Go (Elsa, I'm sorry!) I mean, sometimes I just look at someone with the head turned to ask, "UH, HOW?!?!" This layout has a card that asks just this question, "How do I let it go? How do I release?" I also ask, "What do I need to forgive?" Forgiveness work seems the key to this eclipse energy. Forgiving the self, forgiving others, forgiving our childhood, forgiving our bad decisions...so, that was my thought here. Forgiveness, shadow, release.
I hope you enjoy it and I would LOVE to hear your experience with this layout. And as a sidenote, I thought tomorrow that I might do a Live Reading on FB of this layout for the entire audience. I do offer distance readings, if you are interested in having a reading with me. Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you didn't know, one of my passions is altar making. I have an altar 100% of the time on my bookcase in my meditation room. On one side, i always have a crystal grid going, just to raise the vibration of the room and my soul work. On the other side (because the bookcase is long and thin), I place a statue of a goddess or angel, or a picture, or a statue or fetish of the animal medicine I'm working with. Then more crystals, ones that work with the crystal grid or medicine wheel I have on the other side. I change it out depending on the holy day or sabbat, my soul work or journey work, shadow issues that arise, messages I am getting from Spirit, Animal Medicine, health or family crisis...whenever I am facing a new challenge, passion or phase in my life, I look to the altar first.
I have been facing so many different exciting changes and circumstances. My health journey has been challenging this year. My work life has expanded with hibiscus moon and then my client base in harrisburg is always expanding and changing. My soul work has been on a nice even keel, and then I went to SouLodge Earth Medicine Gathering and uncovered many layers of what I need to do. Where do I even start with all this?
Well, that was my question. Where to start? Where does Spirit want me to start with all that information? Being an intuitive isn't always so clear cut. I get tons of messages. Right now, my dreaming is through the roof (Last night, i dreamed an incredible dream, and then when it was done, I decided to have that dream again, and then reworked it into a new dream with a new ending. Talk about lucid dreaming on steroids!) And sometimes I get that analysis paralysis, or rather information overload!
Because of all this soul work, I have rededicated myself to morning journaling and daily tarot pulls. AND WOWEE! it is awesome. What is awesome is finding a new passion for something I do so often for other people. When you pull tarot for clients, you often don't pull for yourself. Part of it is that i easily dismiss my messages--yeah, yeah, I need to stop being so hard on myself. Okay. Scoop up the cards, and immediately forget the message. So, journaling keeps you accountable, and I decided to play and explore some new decks beyond my beloved Rider-Waite, specifically the Chrysalis deck by Toney Brooks and Holly Sierra as well as Motherpeace by Karen Vogel and Vicki Noble. I've been using the BOOK! (I always joke with my students about getting OFF BOOK! and now I am back ON BOOK [and incidentally loving being on book. I even went on Rachel Pollack's book with the Rider Waite just to keep it going.])
All of this is to say, this morning, I tweaked a spread I do for myself for creating altars when I have a short attention span and cannot figure out what to focus on. It incorporates Oracle decks with Tarot; in fact, it incorporated four additional oracle decks--Visions Crystal Oracle, my own oracle deck called Cycles, of which there is only one deck and it is all about ritual, The Wild Unknown Animal Spirit deck and the Ascended Master deck by Doreen Virtue. Then I used the Chrysalis Tarot deck for my main work, which has guides in and of itself. (Such a fantastic deck. I was at first obsessed with the pips, but now, I cannot get enough of the Majors. Ariadne is stalking me, I swear. And Kali for that matter.)
Anyway, here is the spread as I pulled it:
So much of what this reading said to me was that it was time to allow transformation to happen. The shadow work here is around letting go, surrender and joy. I often struggle with joy. Joy is a bugger for me. So, this work with snake centers around this shedding of control and desire to figure it all out. The ritual card here is one I created called Enso, Imperfection. I used to have a fairly steady and daily enso painting practice. I don't paint ensos anymore--life got complicated with my adventurous two year old. But I decided to paint a rock to remind me of this for my altar, using this enso ritual as a jumping off point to explore an imperfect creative practice to funnel some energy.
Here is the altar and grid that arose from this spread:
You also can play with this spread, as I have compiled a little easy Tarot Layout for you to incorporate into your practice. In fact, I created a few of these for Pinterest, since I use SO MANY pinterest layouts these days, having not so recently discovered that they exist. Enjoy and share, if you can. It is great to have a Tarot community to bounce ideas off of. LOVE to YOU!