Sugar Devil

public domain

You can’t sugar coat this.

It’s just one of those gnarly sh*tshow kind of years. All politics aside for the moment, there has been a lot of funky mojo energy out there. We’ve talked about it through the past several months and made friends with the word “zeitgeist” along the way. It started with multiple, multiple clients who never thought of themselves as intuition sensitive or empaths. Time and again readings were saying that the anxieties they were feeling were actually a resonant response to the outer energy environment and to reinforce their boundaries, to do something protective. The 2020 funk started ringing those assorted psychic and empathic bells as early as January and February. Then came the avalanche of pentacle cards telling us to hunker down, get our proverbial ducks in a row, and pay attention to the physical realm nuts and bolts of things. For those of us lucky enough to be able to work from home, paying attention to the physical realm while staying home 24/7 wasn’t exactly helpful advice, at least not on the surface. Dig a little deeper, and we were being called to wring enjoyment out of the simple things, to recapture the things that delight us, and remember that little things really do mean a lot. That, in turn, inspired the “Kitten Whiskers” off topic favorite things posts this summer (more of those to come, btw)

The energies have shifted, I’ll grant you. The boundary challenging, empathic bell ringing quality has abated. The focus-on-the-physical, avoid life altering decisions if possible, enjoy-the-little-things-while-you-can energy has become the spiritual retreat many of us expected at the beginning. Ready or not, we were thrown into a cocoon by worldwide crisis. Now, we are facing a new crisis. This time it is internal. NOW is the time for that spiritual introspection and evolution. We were chucked into the cocoon. Now we are being forced to decide how, and in what form we will emerge.

Are we going to bring the same hate and prejudices out with us that we took in with us from the before time? Are we going to face what we’ve avoided both out there in the world and within ourselves?

That is where the Devil card comes in. It isn’t a prediction of doom. I still get that mental image of a storm front on the horizon. Actually, that distant hurricane image is honestly starting to look like a tornado of sand and glass at our doorstep ready to grind everything flat to dust is certain people and forces prevail. That isn’t the Devil card.

In this case, the Devil card is reminding us that some people have come out of the cocoon a good deal worse for the wear. This is our reminder that the sh*t is still storming and there are dark forces out there. It really isn’t all rainbows and unicorns. We are going out of the cocoon and into the crucible.

One of the greatest things about the Devil card is the reminder that it serves. Yeah, things may suck, they may continue to suck for a time to come, but we can nevertheless do SOME thing to make the world a better place in spite of the general suckishness. Volunteer. Protest (with a mask, outdoors, standing apart) donate, vote a straight blue ticket come November. Be at peace for a moment. Even just one little moment. Even at that, you have added a moment of peaceful energy to a world that really needs it right now.

Today’s Tarot: Now Is The Time

Writing a blog and doing a general audience Tarot reading is both challenging and interesting. I’m sure the process is different for everyone who takes on Tarot blogging and YouTubing. For me, it starts with a general intent that the card (or whatever topic) post is helpful to somebody, somewhere, sometime. Once a post is chucked out there into cyberspace to drift forever “today” or “the week of” can become any day or any week. You have to start someplace. Even though I do the reading looking at a particular day or week, there is a background energy that knows the ideas in the post can cross paths with anyone browsing around at any time. The algorithms work in mysterious ways. The best way I’ve found to work with that baseline, background energy is to let it be, and trust that people and ideas, internet readers and internet readings when the time is right. Trusting that the message will get where it needs to go whenever it needs to be there is at the core all genuine readings, regardless of format. Readings are a leap of faith in both your intuition and the message it relays.

2020 has been a challenging energy environment to say the least. It has required a whole new level of awareness when it comes to background energies, boundary lines and the general shape of things. This year has forced a greater awareness of that boundary line between internal emotions and external energies. It has forced a time and place awareness that has never really been needed before. It’s fascinating to be aware of where an energy is coming from and where it is directed, all against the backdrop of trusting the message to get where it needs to be in all of cyberspace and forward looking time.

For this card and this moment, here, now, with you reading this, the message is exactly that…”now is the time.”

That is the global anyone anytime message. If something has been on your mind, this is the “ready, steady” with “go” on the near horizon. This is the time to take your place on the starting line and take your stance. The race begins momentarily.

Layer one is the most vague general intent. The next layer is the sense of final preparation and a sense of urgency to watch and listen for an emminant signal to begin. Why not the Fool card you ask? This has an air of seriousness that the Fool card does not. Also this us an embedded beginning. This feels like a beginning of a new phase within a larger process.

As a final overlay, there is a regional variant. There is a sense of the card coming through that is specific to the pandemic, specific to the United States. That energy can be described as “hearts are laid bare”.

It reminds me of a scene from the book and movie Dune. “Our test is crisis and observation.” The past three months have been, to one extent or another, crisis. Now observe. Hearts are laid bare. We have shown who we truely are. All of us. Including you. Some are affible and adaptable, making jokes about pets and pajamas and zoom meetings. Others are heroic, doing both the extraordinary and the commonplace to keep the rest of us safe and alive.

Still others are angry, bile-spewing, self involved, arrogant and callous.

Now is the time for all to see. There is no pretending. There is no hiding. There is no middle ground.

People wear their heart … or abject lack of it … literally on their face.

The past months of the pandemic were not a time for big decisions, not a time for spiritual deep dives. We needed to take care of the basics first. Energies have shifted. Something has changed.

Now is the time. Now is the time for introspection and spiritual deep diving. Now is the time for the path-defining choices. Now is when we must stare ourselves straight in our soul and decide who we are and who we are going to be from this time on.

Gift of a Lifetime Wrapped in a Pen

Ink Reading Glass pen


Sallie Christensen, one of the most skilled and gifted psychics I’ve ever met, once told me that “A thought is powerful, the spoken word is more so, but the written word is the most powerful of all.” That one sentence was a gift of a lifetime wrapped in a pen. In essence, she had handed me a magic wand.

I had that reading with her in the early 1990s, roughly around the time I’d started exploring oracle cards with Tarot soon to follow. That adage has proven true time and again in the decades since.

Journal writing is a powerful thing. I suspect those years of journaling is the reason why I can communicate messages from spirit as easily through pen and keyboard as through speaking. Written Tarot is definitely more sophisticated, since live sessions don’t have edit buttons or grammar check. Speech may transmit ideas quickly, but writing is a superconductor. Hearing is here and now. Even recordings have a sense of immediacy. Writing transcends space and time. It’s the closest thing we have to telepathy. When I write something and you read it, the message from spirit is communicated heart to heart and mind to mind with none of the mechanics of speech or hearing in between. Hearing happens at Mach 1, the speed of sound. Reading happens at the speed of light.

As Carl Sagan wrote:

“A book is made from a tree. It is an assemblage of flat, flexible parts (still called “leaves”) imprinted with dark pigmented squiggles. One glance at it and you hear the voice of another person, perhaps someone dead for thousands of years. Across the millennia, the author is speaking, clearly and silently, inside your head, directly to you. Writing is perhaps the greatest of human inventions, binding together people, citizens of distant epochs, who never knew one another. Books break the shackles of time ― proof that humans can work magic.”

Written Tarot is potent to both give and receive. The experience of reading something that resonates with you spiritually is very similar to the experience getting an intuitive message directly from spirit. Reading anything that is spiritually resonant, be it books, letters, Tarot cards, blogs or emails, is a breathless melange of emotion, empowerment, and enlightenment. Many books have been like that for me, Ted Andrews’ and Christopher Penczak’s in particular. Perhaps written Tarot can capture some of that experience for you.

Intuition happens inside of your head and heart. It is an entirely subjective experience. For me, the internal process of writing is more closely aligned to the internal intuitive message itself.  The flow from spirit to written language is immediate and effortless, while putting things into spoken words takes the tiniest bit more thought and effort. In wireless terms, spoken words work at 4G while my writing operates at 5G or above.

How you enjoy taking in the words and messages of a session is another story. If you like to read, written Tarot is as comfortable as breathing. It doesn’t matter if the actual thing you read is a computer screen or a piece of paper. The experience of reading your message is equally intense regardless of media.

In-person Tarot readings are wonderful, mind expanding, heart warming, and sometimes life changing things…just like the session I had with Sally when we talked about journal writing.

An email or handwritten paper Tarot session is its own kind of mind expanding, heart warming and life changing  experience … just like reading the Andrews and Penczak books.

All of that being said, I’m hoping this will let you feel confident in ordering Distance Tarot. While this post is a glimpse to the writing process on my side of the table, the message is the same no matter how you prefer to receive it, written or spoken, email or live. It’s just a matter of deciding which experience resonates with you.


This one is for all of the book lovers. I’m working on a second edition of PeaceTarot. Both editions teach you how to do DIY daily Tarot meditations even if you don’t have a Tarot deck on hand. The second edition adds expanded, pandemic-era card meanings for all 78 RWS Tarot cards.. During the caronapocolypse, we have all been making do with stuff on hand. As life “re-opens” I hope we can carry a little bit of that ingenuity with us. In the spirit of that resourcefulness, I want to upcycle some second quality paper copies* of PeaceTarot and hand customize one just for you. I’ll write a one card reading just like the kind of readings the book can teach you to do PLUS include a sigil element (or sigil glyph or psych-a-doodle or whatever you want to call it) crystal energy and aromatherapy suggestions, an affirmation, add whatever else comes to mind AND use my favorite schmancy glass dip pen. There are a limited number available. All you really pay for is postage and handling. The “graffiti edition” PeaceTarot with custom handwritten one card Tarot readings are available in the shop HERE.

*First edition, single side print, side staple bound

Just a quick reminder: Distance Tarot is always OPEN, with phone readings by appointment. Even though our area is partially out of lockdown and starting to re-open for retail business, in-person individual and party readings will remain closed until a COVID-19 vaccine becomes available.

Related post: The Power Grows.


Today’s Tarot: Just Because You Can


The Two of Swords is an interesting card. I’ve seen a wide variety of interpretations for it, all of which ring true at one time or another. The classic interpretation is to be of two minds about something, or to have difficulty choosing between two nearly identical options. Diane Morgan broadens that duality beyond the mundane to include the spirit realm. Here, the two of swords is more about identifying and connecting to subtly different realms of being rather than subtly different physical realm choices. Ted Andrews uses elements of both. He connects the physical and spiritual, but points out the choices we make as we integrate the spiritual into daily living. He puts it in terms of right use of power. 

As I drew the card, I got a strong mental impression of the Colossus of Rhodes, the ancient wonder, a statue so large that is believed to have stood with a foot on either side of the entrance to the port at Rhodes in ancient Greece. Today, Brea Fisher spook of “a foot in two worlds” in her ever lovely and wise @quanyingongfu feed on Instagram. The interplay between the physical world and the spiritual world is asking for our attention.

We each live with a foot in both worlds You experience the solid, physical realm all of the time, but also have continuous access to the ethereal realm of thoughts, emotions, imagination and intuition.

The two of swords is reminding us to make wise choices about which foot we use and how. My attention is particularly drawn to the esoteric energy side of this and the old adage “Just because you can doesn’t mean that you should.” 

Those who work with energy professionally bear the greatest responsibility in that respect. I don’t feel pushed to say that because I’ve seen anyone being irresponsible. “Psychic” scams have been around forever. Today, I feel pulled to mention this out of deep respect for everyone out here doing it right. 

Today the Two of Swords is a bow of respect for those who act out of compassion. Yes, we advertise and post and tell everyone what we do so those who need us can find us. We ask for fair payment or donation in exchange for our expertise and skilled services, but we do so out of compassion for ourselves and our families. We communicate not out of ego but to build trust. Beware the shifting and shady. The trustworthy write the rules, expectations and boundaries for all to see.

Also a bow of respect to those who speak their truth but have the strength to speak their truth but then let go. Ego is needy in this line of work. A wise person can let others about their life and make all the mistakes they need to find wisdom for themselves.

There are many excellent teachers out there and I am so grateful to have found the words of so many of them: Ted Andrews, Carl Sagan & Ann Druyan, Christopher Penczak, Scott Cunningham, Brea Fisher, Nick Gracenin, Jose Johnson and many more. 

We walk through life with a foot in two worlds. Sometimes physical circumstances carry the greater weight and demands our attention, as it has with the pandemic. But to keep moving forward, to keep living, the spiritual foot must move forward and have its day before the physical realm demands its due again.

My hunch is we are in a brief liminal time when things are shifting. The moment is twilight quiet, the eye of the hurricane. Personal power and inner spirituality must be used rightly. This isn’t the time for bluster and show, not a time for group-think, blind positivism or outward dogma. We’ve survived for the moment, so now is the time to turn quietly inward give our hearts and souls their turn even as we prepare to return our attention to the practical in times to come. 

Psst…a new freebie

Now in the TaoCraftTarotShop on Etsy:

I’m calling this ‘PeaceTarot, the graffiti edition’

Purchase a mini InkMagick Tarot reading for $5 and get a FREE paper copy of PeaceTarot first edition AND FREE postage.

Full disclosure: these are second quality copies, with single sided pages and staples-only binding. I’ve UPCYCLED these sad little homeless copies with handwritten mini InkMagick Tarot readings. Please personalize your reading with any question or topic you have for the card. If you want an open reading, just leave the personalization option blank.

PeaceTarot is an easy how-to booklet that teaches you to do DIY daily meditation style Tarot readings for yourself, even if you don’t have a Tarot deck at hand. The second part has unique card interpretations for the 78 Rider Waite style cards that focus on regaining peace of mind during stressful times.

InkMagic readings are handwritten, and include all the usual parts of any distance Tarot (read about THAT here) I will pull a card just for you, then write the card and its reading in the white space in the booklet, including the sigil element intuitive illustration, crystal and aromatherapy recommendations, and a positive affirmation based on the reading. Limited supply!

Today’s Tarot: Grind


The Five of Wands has long been associated with conflict and challenge – but it is not insurmountable. I don’t know of any Tarot cards that are hopeless. There are “change course”, or “cut it loose and move on” types of  messages, but never an “give up it’s over” kind of message. This may seem close. It isn’t going to be easy. Life seldom is. The message from the Five of Wands isn’t give up. It’s quite the opposite. It is a call to persist. We’ve made it to the point where now we know what to do (stay the heck at home, etc.) Now is the time to do it. And keep doing it. Then do it some more. It’s time to grind.

Yes, things are inside out and upside down. In an ideal world, our future selves will look back, figure out just what went wrong, and try to figure out what we need to do to stay out of this particular sh*tstorm. But how is that going to help here and now that everything has hit the fan and we are right in the middle of it?


Just do it. Fake it until you make it. “Don’t think yourself into a new way of doing, do yourself into a new way of thinking.

On that big, gestalt, general energy, zeitgeist level, it feels to me like there has been another shift in the wind. The past several days have been a pleasant respite. That was the eye of the hurricane. Now we are headed back into it for the second half of the initial storm. There are more waves on the horizon, but we’ll cross that energy bridge when we get to it. 

For now, do what needs done without over thinking it. Persistence will overcome.

It may not be a good time for spirituality. There may not be energy to spare for that. If that is where you mind, heart and energy lies, this card suggests a present moment attention, like a minor arcana echo to the Chariot card. This card suggests that Zen is a good spiritual approach to take in the challenges to come. Think Shaolin Monk. Think Samurai. Whatever level of potato peeling you may be doing, the idea is as Alan Watts said:

“Zen does not confuse spirituality with thinking about God while one is peeling potatoes. Zen spirituality is to just peel the potatoes.”

– Alan Watts


YouChoose Interactive Tarot: Leading Indicators


“There is no such thing as a problem without a gift for you in its hands. You seek problems because you need their gifts.” – Richard Bach

It’s not the no-pentacles thing.

Do you feel it? It isn’t over. The whole pandemic energy is still there, not the buzzing initial panic, but a low key, solid comfortable existential dread. From a place of both logic AND intuition – the switch flipping open the economy folks are insane. It is not time to go whole hog. We need to keep doing what we are doing a few more weeks. Even then there should be limits and cautions and this is nowhere near over until there is a vaccine.  

There is a leading indicator shift in the energy, akin to the resonance of panic and the foreboding ping that came in February and the run up to stay at home orders. This is advance planning. This is a nudge to think about what you are going to do or not do when official restrictions change. Trust me, the work from home freelancer….you don’t HAVE to go out if you don’t want to.

This reading, as a group of three, is about the good things this problem of staying in has brought, and once again this is more for the privileged than for those essential workers in the thick of this. They have bigger fish to fry than the getting and giving of Tarot readings. This is about “This is your chance to appreciate this while you have a chance before this opportunity goes away” This group of cards remind us to take whatever small gifts and good memories from the quarantine with us when it is all, finally and later, over.

Left: Two of Cups. This card, in normal times, is about marriage and other meaningful long term relationships. This is about holding on to long distance friendships that may have been forged online during social distancing. This is about the relationships that were strengthened or stretched to the limit being quarantined together. Think about what relationships have proven themselves to really matter over the past couple of months and think about which ones, if any, have proven themselves to be unnecessary. In short, trim and nurture where needed, cherish the precious from now on.

Center: Knight of Wands. Act on your passions. The rah-rah “toxic positive” vibe was way ahead of this curve. You still l don’t have to achieve or do anything except make it through, day by day. It wasn’t time yet, for many people, to do that spring cleaning or do their equivalent of Shakespeare writing King Lear during the plague. If you have some pet project or dreams to pursue, the energies are turning more toward that. Comfort yourself and those around you, yes. You will need that strength later. But the energies are shifting so it is easier for us to shift from hold-and-survive to once again chasing the dream.

Right: Eight of Swords. We are still trapped. It isn’t time to fully move yet. Now is the time for planning and creative problem solving. The energies may not have started to shift for you. If you have been thinking of these times as prison, now is the time to see them as protection. What do you need to guard that you haven’t seen? Where have you let your guard down….either getting your shields up too late, or dropping them too early?

Want a reading just for you, not from the public youtube / blogaverse cyberspace? You can get a private reading just for you, in a format that suits your taste and style: 

  • Email – typed doc with photo of your unique cards sent as an email attachment – no appointment needed
  • Video – your unique cards with verbal interpretation that you download with a unique (and private) link that comes to your email. (the files for the bigger readings are too large to attach directly) No appointment needed.
  • LIVE phone reading (by appointment only – prepayment required – schedule with the contact form HERE)
  • InkMagick Tarot is old school, and as magic as the name implies. The written word is powerful and tangible. This is a unique keepsake reading rarely offered. Experience a Tarot reading that you can touch even as it touches you.



Taking the Advice the Cards Keep Giving

Now is not the time to press, to strive, to make big decisions – or try to learn to make good youtube content. Now is the time to be mindful. Pay attention to the here and now, even if it is isolated or terrible. But that’s easy for me to say, because right now I’m ok. I forget who said it, but mental and emotional suffering lies between how things are and how we wish them to be.  Now is a time to gather in our energies and make friends with where we are and who we are, no judgements, no goals, no expectations.

YouChoose Interactive Tarot: Plant

Pick a card. Pause the video if you need some time. Restart to seee the reveal, then you can scroll down to get your reading below. OR you can do you own reading. PeaceTarot ebook download can teach you how. (


Left: Ace of Pentacles. “Bloom where you are planted.” The energies are a wind at your back, the near future is an opportune time for productivity and creativity in a very tangible way. Both the muses and the maker’s energies are with you. Be on the lookout for inspiration and opportunity to make or do something tangible.

Middle: Seven of Pentacles “Let the planted seeds grow.” In the 27 years that I’ve been reading cards, I’ve never seen a pattern so repeated, so loud, so clear as the energies have been for the past couple of months of the global pandemic.

Now is not the time for big innovation, change or being overly high-minded, or woo woo spiritual about things. Let the seeds that were sown grow. This is one of those time to leave well enough alone. Sit with what is and what has happened so far. This is very different from the major arcana Hanged Man energy. It isn’t stagnation…this is a needed, necessary quiet. We aren’t stuck, the best thing to DO is nothing, is to wait. Being at peace with that will reap harvest in its time. Finding out that you are not at peace with quiet and your own company is important too. Both are needed now in order to move forward at harvest time.

Right: Queen of Wands “Tend to your garden.” Again this is a clear, repeated message of the times. Take care of yourself and those near to you. Do what needs done. Protect yourself. Do the right thing to protect those around you. The Tarot is on the experts side. Again, just like with the Seven of Pentacles, no is not the time to push or innovate or be overly woo woo spiritual, Tend to the physical. The spiritual will come back in its time. Your endurance is needed. Sleep. Eat. Get outside when you safely can.

Social Distance is my Tarot specialty! I write Tarot as easily as speaking it face to face. A keyboard is a hotline to intutition for me. The connection comes from information, not physical presance. Spirit and energy exists everywhere, so I can get your message and send it anywhere. Order on the home page. Prices reduced through at least the end of April to help out during the pandemic.

YouChoose Interactive Tarot: Own It.

Pause the video if you need more time to pick your card, then restart to see the reveal. Scroll down to see your card reading. Please follow the blog so you don’t miss any of the learn-to-read-Tarot and other “my side of the table” written content that will be coming up over the next few months.

Left: Knight of Pentacles. “SUSTAIN” A knight that drops his shield in a battle doesn’t survive for very long. In this case “back to business” does NOT mean back to the way things were before. It means put on your big kid underwear and keep going, even if you are exhausted to the bone. Last month was alarms and claxons and responding to a real life and death emergency, collectively speaking. This isn’t recovery. This is keep going. Keep your guard up. This card is letting us know this isn’t close to over. We needed a period of mobilization, freak-out, and adjustment, without judgement. Now is the time to be adjusted already and sustain our response. Forget before. It’s time go get to the business of the business at hand. Energies are shifting from an all out sprint to a sustained, marathon endurance pace.

Center: Nine of Wands. Read the Knight of Pentacles, this is basically the same message on a slightly less literal and more mental/emotional level. Energies are shifting, but stay on guard. If you are empathic or otherwise energy sensitive, continue to set strong boundaries. Don’t be a victim. Be responsible. Do the self-care you need to sustain through this middle phase. There is no “back to normal.” Do what you need to do to be in a good head space right here, right now.

Right: The Star. “Thank the things that got you this far” This is also has a bit of a mental/emotional/spiritual spin to it, although it is important to know the physical realm people and resources that have helped you…and the things that can and will help you still. Pay it forward as best as you can both now and later. Less literally, think about the things that got you through the initial response and change and is helping you to sustain as we begin the middle of unknowable duration. What ideas, beliefs, people and practices have gotten you this far? What old beliefs that “should” be your rock and your shelter have crubled to dust under the weight of everything? What beliefs have supported and sustained you? What new shining star guides you when the world seems to spin out from under you? Forget before. What ideas and beliefs have proven their worth under these very real stresses be they old or new?

Buckaroo Bonzai said “No matter where you go, there you are.” Well, here we are. It isn’t like it was, but it is what we have. Now it is time to own what we do with it.