ElfCon 2020

Headed toward prolly one of the chillest holiday seasons in years. I blame it on my daughter growing up and getting all adult and stuff. Making some mala for the shop and am always ready to do distance readings. Want to take a look ahead to 2020? Relax, I have you covered with the “Seasons of the Year” layout which returns today. Forget putting another appointment on a crowded calendar…indulge in a little inexpensive self care no appintment needed with distance readings HERE or (here is a little gift idea for you) order handcrafted mala meditation beads HERE

The Un-selfie Psychic

I hate having my picture taken.

Always have, it seems. One of my favorite photos from when I was about 6 or 7 was the whole family seated against the wall at grandma’s house, looking oh so 1970s. Mom, Dad, and my 2 year old sister had enormous “say cheese!” grins. Mom also had her arm around my waist with me in full sprint position making a break for it, fast exit stage right. I won’t tell you how old the picture below is, but it will have to do because I don’t do selfies. I’m trying to make myself do one of those speech to camera introductions for a TaoCraft YouTube channel, but we’ll cross that bridge later. Much later.

It is only slightly less excruciating to write a bio for a book or what have you. I hadn’t updated mine in ages. I copied and pasted the “Meet Your Reader” page right from the old Modern Oracle page. I mean, ewww, right?

But logic finally won. Updated the old bio this afternoon. It’s below.

As long as I’m introducing Reiki and meditation to TaoCraft Tarot, might as well reintroduce myself to you so you’ll know who is coming to your reading or your party, or is behind the cards for your distance session.

*Deep Breath*

Here goes….nice to meet you

MEET YOUR READER

Read Client Reviews

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My name is Ronda. I read Tarot, write things, and make stuff.

I started out with no intention of reading cards professionally. I have a Bachelor of Science in Medical Science, 13 years clinical experience as a physician assistant in psychiatry and interventional cardiology, a non-accredited Ph.D in Natural Health, Reiki Master-practitioner certification, U.L.C. ordination and am a retired Tai Chi instructor. The original idea was to do Natural Health Consultations. Natural, holistic health is all about mind, body and spirit in balance. There are lots of practitioners out there who can help physical heath. As it turns out, my calling is to help emotions and spirit through the art and entertainment of Tarot.

In the early 90s, when I was working in mainstream medicine, I began reading Tarot and oracle cards for my own spiritual development. That, and the fact I was too cheap to pay overpriced phone bills and have psychic friends to do it for me. Turns out I have a knack for it. After reading for friends and family, my best friend encouraged me to try reading online. In the early 2000s I did readings under the handle “Baihu” on Keen, Advice Trader, and Allexperts. When my Ph.D dissertation expenses came along, I took the next logical step, started to work for myself, and Modern Oracle Tarot was born. The extensive Tarotbytes blog archives are still available if you are interested.

In October of 2018, I brought Reiki and meditation under the same cyber roof as my tarot work, transforming Modern Oracle into the TaoCraft Tarot you see today.

That’s the “I read Tarot” part.

Things I’ve written includes the old “Tarotbytes” blog, the blog at RondaSnow.comModern Oracle: Hello, Peace Tarot, my dissertation Reiki and Relaxation and Bead Mindful, Begin Meditating. PeaceTarot is available in the etsty shop with other titles coming soon.  PeaceTarot and my poetry collection “Triquetra: The Dance of Worlds” are already on amazon.com for Kindle. I have written  articles about Natural Health for Point of Light magazine, and about Tarot for Find Your Psychic e-zine. My poetry has been in magazines and contest anthologies including Kindred Magazine, Nature’s Echoes, Quicksilver Moon, and Sparrowgrass Poetry Forum.

Now for the making stuff…

I make handcrafted meditation beads (mala) for your meditation practice or to go with the meditation lessons offered here. You can find them in TaoCraft T.arot Shop  on Etsy. I also knit and make handmade jewelry as a hobby. Some of those projects are in the shop too.

Now we’ve come to the part where author’s bios put some jazzy 3rd person comment about where I live and and stuff…

Ronda lives in the Pittsburgh suburbs with her musician / concert photographer / computer genius husband, her yarn stash and a deep dislike for doing yard work.

I hope we can work together soon.

 

Was in maker mode this weekend

These have already sold: gratitude

This is new in TaoCraftTarot.shop

These are still there, and would make great Valentine’s day gifts. That accent crystal is amethyst colored, and amethyst is a birthstone for both February and Pisces.

Distance Tarot is always there too, no appointment needed.

It’s going to be another snowy Monday here, so I’m ready to brew up a cup and read Tarot all day, rain, snow, shine or whatever the weather where you are. I hope we can work together soon.

The Niggles: What’s in a Name?

A lot.

Sometimes, a whole lot.

“Re-branding” seems to be a thing lately. “Ghoulish Delights Bath Shop” is becoming “Balefire Apothocary” (fingers crossed she’ll still carry my very most favorite hand cream) and ” Hearts Peace Healing” is becoming “Hygge Lightwork”.  One personal trainer is becoming a Tarot reader, while a musician is becoming a personal trainer and a martial artist is shifting to being a musician and life coach. Of course, Modern Oracle Tarot is now TaoCraft Tarot.

My sense is this is growth, evolution, and expansion is a very good thing for all of us. The new name isn’t just a marketing ploy. There is no ill will or negative feeling about our old names or identities at all. Shedding our old “brand” is like a snake shedding its skin: It’s necessary for growth. We are re-naming, re-imagining, and re-building in order to embrace more things and to become more fully ourselves. I can’t speak for the other folks, of course, but after brief chats on social media, I get the feeling we are all very much on on the same page.

Expansion and deeper authenticity is certainly my aim in abandoned Modern Oracle and building TaoCraft. As I write this, Modern Oracle feels like something that happened ages ago to someone else. Time passes. I’m not the same person who started Modern Oracle. TaoCraft is me, now.

That doesn’t mean I have to abandon EVERY single little thing. “The Niggles” are still here. Those posts are about ideas that camp out in my head, and niggle there until I write about them. Yeah, I know. That sounds more like a brain parasite than creative inspiration. Some ideas are like that.

Since the very beginning of this re-branding process, I’ve felt pushed to talk about TaoCraft as a name. I have no earthly idea why, or even what to say, so I’ll follow that spirit, inspiration, call of the muses, or brain idea-parasite such as the case may be.

Let’s start with the obvious. “TaoCraft” is a made up word, and I’ve stuck a capital in the middle. Why? I like it. As two words, it is a description. As one word it is a NAME. I threw the capital in because 1. it works as a humpback web address and 2. “Craft” is an integral part of the concept with a dollop of double meaning.

Tao, as many of you know, is from Chinese philosophy; Taoist, Taoism, Tao Te Ching. Just to be pedantic, Tao and Dao are the same thing. Tao is Pinyan westernization of the Mandarin word, while Dao is from the Wade-Giles system. The few minutes I studied Mandarin back in the 90s, I was taught using Pinyan, so there you are. Tao it is. Tao is usually translated as “way” as in a “way of life” or a “way of doing things.”

What does Taoism have to do with Tarot? A surprising lot, actually.  “Magical Tarot, Mystical Tao” by Diane Morgan explains it best. It was an enormous influence in the early days of my Tarot career because it connected two great loves. Time and time and time again, Tao and Tarot were philosophies, a way of looking at the world, that I could rely on. I could lean on them in turbulent times without them crumbling to dust and nothing as religion and other philosophies always, always did. When your life puts your beliefs to the test, they shouldn’t fall apart. Taoism and Tarot never did. No matter what I would learn or explore, I always circled back to them and found them reliable, trustworthy. Tao and Tarot belong here in this new mental and spiritual living place. They are very much authentic me. This re-branding is, as is highly valued within Taoism, an exercise in deep authenticity.

Craft is also a bridge. As Tao and Tarot bridge east and west, craft bridges old and new. When I see the word, “arts and crafts” spring to mind. My grandmother taught me to embroidery when I was 6. Embroidery, cross stitch, knitting, beading have been a part of me since then. I like to create and make. That embraces the meditation mala and assorted stuff I make and put in the TaoCraft Tarot shop on Etsy. Craft connects to a fond memory of a cherished Grandmother – a wise woman whom I swear was magic. Which brings me to the new craft. THAT craft. THE craft. Not the movie, although it is one of my favorites. TaoCraft expands my Tarot cyber-world to include, mala, meditation, Reiki, and my own brand of magical craft. It took half a century to even flirt with the notion of associating with magic or witchcraft, but dammit, I’m claiming it now. And I’m defining it on my own terms. This is my own non-diestic, non-ritualistic, natural, energy reading WAY of engaging with a solitary sort of witchCRAFT. I’ve finally found words for what I’ve been doing all along in Laura Zakroff’s excellent book “Sigil Witchery”. A “modern traditional witch” is one who “does what needs doing when it needs done using whatever is at hand.” That. So that.

There you have it. That is what is in THIS name. Welcome to TaoCraft Tarot.

 

 

ElfCon 5 2018: Bring it

This is the most low stress, laid back downright holiday season in years. My daughter is adult now, the Terry’s oranges are already in the cupboard, it’s a jewelry not knitting year for gifts (less time intensive by a loooong shot)

This year, instead of straight up closing for the holidays, I’ve decided to keep distance Tarot and Sending Stones Reiki open. In-person and party sessions are cut back December 15 – Jan 15 but I have lots of time for Distance work, which suits my introverted eggnog loving, cookie baking, knitting, and mala making holiday plans just fine.

My gift to you was easy to make this year too: use YULECRAFT18 at checkout to get 10% off everything in TaoCraft Tarot Shop except e-books.

The holidays are spookily in hand this year. I’m here to help you deal with your holiday stress with Distance Tarot, Distance Reiki, and handmade mala and other surprises for out of the ordinary gift ideas. I’m only at ElfCon 5 so all of you hectic Santa’s Helpers…bring on the readings and the relaxings 🙂

Don’t forget: If you contact me and don’t get a reply of some kind within one business day PLEASE try again. I’m closed Sundays and US holidays so please be a little extra patient during those times.

I’m on Telegram now (@TaoCraftTarot) if you want to text privately.  The phone only answers daytime business hours (eastern usa time zone) IF I’m not with a client. Otherwise, please leave a voicemail. I get voicemail notices all the time, and that is a pretty reliable way to get through. Ditto for email.

Let the ElfCon Days begin!

 

 

 

 

A Door Opens….

Welcome to TaoCraft Tarot

Stop me if I’m over explaining here. I don’t know if it is anxiety from this whole re-branding thing, or just good old fashioned trying to convince myself….but I feel like I owe all of you an explanation. I hope there is an “all of you” to explain TO. It feels a little hollow and echo-y in there at the moment. Let me give you a little tour anyway.

Things here are rustic and real. I’m done trying to make Tarot palatable to the mainstream. Neither the very religious or the very atheist will like this I suspect. But like the Knight of Pentacles Internet meme…my field of fucks has grown barren. If this darker aesthetic, a little snark and humor, and talk of magick and Taoism is offensive to someone, then fine. We are not a good match to work together anyway. Modern Oracle had a tendency to pander to respectability and evangelizing for Tarot. TaoCraft is about deep authenticity, simplicity, and humanity.

Imagine it like this.

Imagine a one room stone cottage at the edge of an evergreen forest. The large storefront window and glass door let in abundant diffuse natural light. To the right as you walk in you see a fireplace with a bright, fragrant, crackling fire. There is a table with two comfy chairs for doing Tarot readings. In the middle, bookshelves line the walls and are filled with the books I will write. There is a display with all sorts of mala meditation beads almost vibrating with the Reiki and good intentions placed in them for their new owners. In the far left corner, a fountain burbles next to a table for Reiki sessions. The table is surrounded with shelves of crystals of every color and kind. Under the floorboards we have the same strong foundation that has been there since the beginning. This foundation is made of strict but transparent business policies that protect us from any suspicious, litigious, potentially harmful people. The sprinkles of salt in the corners and the warding spells in the walls are  the zero spam policy and closed comments that protect us all from the dreaded internet trolls. Anyone can have a say – in an email, or in their own blog, just not the comment thread. This is a safe and sacred space, a place where spirit can speak and kindness can thrive.

The door is open. I hope you visit often.