As I mentioned in a post on Friday, I’m no longer doing the blog shares, and thus, am filling the weekend slot on my blog with other things. I also announced that I would be providing sample readings from the books and media I review on Saturdays—which I am so pumped about. If you haven’t checked out the first one that posted yesterday using The Secrets of the Celtic Cross techniques, go do it. I had a lot of fun doing it, even if I was using a character of mine.
While today isn’t the first of what’s to come in future Sundays, it’s the announcement of it.
Blog Goals and Confronting the Tarot Stigma
I really went back and forth on this, because I wasn’t sure that this was how I wanted to get branded, if I got branded at all by this. My aim for this blog is to be somewhat academic, approachable, logical, and something that the skeptic can appreciate. At the end of the day, I know that Tarot and divination is something either you’re all about, or just label as ‘woo’, which is kind of a term I dislike—to put it mildly.
As I’ve mentioned in a few of my reviews, Tarot is an extremely valuable tool, as is other forms of divination. They help with guiding the Seeker to healing the self, and through this they can heal others. I am so grateful for the respected professionals in the mental health fields who are embracing this tool in their practices to help their clients, and I think that this will infinitely help the stigma around Tarot.
And there is a stigma.
Just the other day, I was posting in a writing community on Facebook, asking a blogging question. I mentioned that I run a Tarot blog, and I was immediately answered by someone telling me that what I was doing was evil, and only contributed to the darkness in the world, that I had no business exposing Tarot to good people. Thankfully, due to this series I’m bout to announce, I had the inner calm to meet her with respect instead of aggression, and encourage her to do some research and request that she respect that we are both human beings trying to make it through the world, trying to keep the darkness out.
Anyway, this is the stigma I want to abolish. Of course, it’s not a one-person deal, and with people like Doreen Virtue coming out against the beauty they’ve created regarding divination, and condemning it—this is a difficult practice.
(For those of you who don’t know, Doreen Virtue is one of the most popular oracle deck creators. At least here in the UK, her Angel oracle cards can be found in just about every bookstore that has a metaphysical section. Her books and decks sit on shelves globally. She recently came out and denounced her association with divination after deepening her connection with Jesus, and has been working with her publishers to pull all her products out of catalogues and out of stores worldwide.)
On a more personal note, while I have a love of Tarot and have considered myself Pagan for 21 years and thus dealt with people who like to tell me I’m going to burn in Hell for no other reason than existing, I have my own personal downfalls I’ve been dealing with over the last few months. After a few very difficult years I finally hit my limit, and said enough is enough.
While I knew I’ve been dealing with depression and anxiety for the last four years, I hadn’t done a damn thing about it except for sink deeper and deeper into it. Last summer I finally sought professional attention—and while I adore the NHS, they really let me down on this one. I was told I would be able to have one-on-one sessions come October. That was nearly a year ago, and I still haven’t been able to get into an opening.
So I began reading self-help books out of desperation. I honestly didn’t know what to do. I was lacking an immediate, in person support network, and I just needed something positive around me. And so I went in a direction that made me say, ‘Oh my God, you’re going to be that person?’ which is a problematic and judgemental response.
I wandered through some absolute crap, I won’t lie. However, I finally started to land in some good places, and while I still have the odd anxiety attack followed by depression, it is nowhere near as severe as it was when I said it was time for a change.
The Actual Announcement
I want to bring forth the books that I found helpful. That’s what these Sunday sessions are going to be about. And as I wrote that last sentence, I realized how preachy that sounded—Sunday sessions on self-help. But really, that’s what religion is, isn’t it? Something that should be uplifting to get us through the week, to remind us to be good to other people and to be good to ourselves.
Anyway, the books I intend to share are those that I found helpful in practical ways. They give exercises, examples, stories. These posts will not be entirely like my Media Reviews, but rather as sharing of what I found helpful in the books. I won’t look at them academically, but rather, as a human being needing a hand, and if that hand was strong enough to help m up the next step.
Specifically—What Type of Books
These books aren’t always specifically directed toward people dealing with mental health, but people looking to heighten spiritual awareness, get to the root of who they are, deepen intuition, and in some cases, build a business. One of the books coming up is The Fire Starter Sessions by Danielle LaPorte, which looks at how to understand what inspires you (very Wands-ish) and gets you excited, and logically following that path rather than doing what’s just the money maker.
Feminine and Masculine Consideration
At least the first few books will be directly feminine. There’s a reason for this. There’s the obvious that I’m a woman and thus I might be more drawn to books for women, but the other part is that I have been so wrapped up in a masculine way of living that I need to find that counterpart to make myself whole again. What I mean by this is that striving and pushing and working extremely hard for goals even with you’re past the point of exhaustion is active and masculine energy. I don’t mean that negatively—surely anyone can see the benefit in hard work and diligence. However, we are whole human beings, and each one of us has a masculine and feminine side, and only by acknowledging, encouraging, and embracing both aspects can we live and act as whole beings.
We are in an action-driven world, and we are pushed to the point of anxiety at times. So in looking at feminine-derived books, I’m trying to remember how to reach that nurturing part of myself that tells me when I’m pushing too hard and that it’s ok to slow down. The part that says to just be still and listen.
I’m also focusing on these books because it is the feminine side of us that uses divination. The great Magi of the past (consider the majority of the members of the Golden Dawn) were active in creating, of making their Wills manifest. They are the Magicians. When the Fool meets the Magician, the Magician is showing the way to take action. When the Fool meets the High Priestess, the Fool is being directed to be still and listen to intuition. These are two inner aspects of the Fool to create the whole. The Empress is the first of the Major Arcana that represents an external force and being.
All that to say that the Tarot is a tool of inner listening, of divining. Through using our inner voice as guidance, we can hear the higher messages of the Universe, the Gods, Spirit—whatever you want to call it. However, this still, listening energy is feminine. And thus, in order for one to be an effective Tarot readers, they need to be able to listen.
The books I’ll be sharing will address how to still the self, and how they influence the skills I need to be a reader and to regain my wholeness.
I am open to suggestions for books to read. I’d love to be able to include them in my list and hear what’s been beneficial to you. I hope you’ll enjoy this and get as much from this as I do.
If you’d like to read with me and create a discussion with me, there are the upcoming books and the dates they’ll be written about:
- June 9, 2019: The Universe Has Your Back by Gabrielle Bernstein
- June 16, 2019: Rise Sister Riseby Rebecca Campbell
- June 23, 2019: The Fire Starter Sessions by Danielle LaPorte
- June 30, 2019 The Art of Asking by Amanda Palmer