YouChoose is back from a short summer hiatus with a slight tweek
The three card ‘pathway layout’ and the first three pathway related cards of the 5 and 7 card layouts have already shifted from a time focus (the old past-present-future related position meanings) to a more timeless energy focus.
I’m making the same shift in focus as I read the interactive cards, too.
We all know that the internet is forever. Instead of reading for a particular day or week, if I focus on right-here and right-now instead of a particular place in time, it might make the videos more time-less by focusing on the present moment.
I’m very thankful and glad that some readers have found and like some older posts. Thank you all. If someone comes across this post after the coming week. By focusing on the now takes this reading outside of linear time because now is the only time that there is.
The part where you choose is still the same. Pause the video if you need a moment, then choose a card. Then restart the video (or just let if go if you choose quickly) and listen to the reading. It still comes out a little time referenced, a little focused on ‘today’ but today could be…should be and will be…right for your day, whenever that day may be when you watch the video or read this post.
Part of the reasoning behind the podcast and partial youtube sabbatical was social media was getting a little noisy, energetically speaking. Too much horse puckey even for me.
Which is a good reason for NOT changing the choice / interactive component. Being able to choose your own card, even for a broad blog-post social media kind of reading, cuts through the noise. You know that the message is for you. The randomness surpasses the coincidences if that makes any weird sense. What are the chances of you choosing that video out the bazillions on the internet and choosing that one card of three on any given day? Sure, if you follow the blog and read new posts as they come out that reduces the random chance element, but hopefully it will have meaning or give a little inspiration just the same.
Please enjoy. I hope you like the little change. All comments and feedback are welcome. Happy Fall!
Q: What does the Universe most want me to know right now? What are my next steps on my life’s path?
A: I love this question!
This is the absolute best kind of question for Tarot. I’m so grateful for the anonymous donor that allowed me to share this question with the blog. It’s a perfect example of what Tarot is most meant to do: to guide us along our life path, not make specific predictions.
Whenever I’m doing a reading with someone for the first time, I try to explain about my layout and how it may differ from the classic layout that inspired it. All of the layouts I offer are either updated versions of classic layouts (like this one) or ones that I’ve written from scratch (like the 7 and 5 card “TaoCraft” layouts). I’ve put the layout explanation in the video. If you want that detail, feel free to watch. If you want to just get to the cards, then scroll on.
If you order any email reading with me this is what you would get: photo of your actual, real-world card layout, general pattern, card by card discussion, and psychic summary that can include things like crystal or aromatherapy suggestions. That part is super individualized and works entirely from intuition. Given that, there are no real promises or guidelines about what the summary will include or not include. The three card pathway reading that follows is an example, used here with permission.
Keep in mind that the energy and message of each person’s reading naturally adapts to that individual’s needs. Some people might need a spiritual frying pan to the face while other people need a gentler touch. As such, example readings ONLY show the general format and process. The actual detail and content varies from person to person. YOUR reading will be unique and tailored to YOUR individual needs, just like this reading was given to this person in this way at this time.
The cards today are:
Energy moving away from you: Nine of Cups
Energy around you: Knight of Swords
Energy moving toward you: Knight of Cups
There isn’t much to say about the pattern in a one or three card layout. That comes more into play for the larger layouts. But you do have two knight cards, which is attention getting in a layout this size. Knights are about action, doing. You are being asked, I think, to take an active responsible role in your well being. If you have a habit of thinking of yourself as a victim, the energies now may be helpful to you if you want to change that thought-habit. But that kind of change is work and requires much effort. There is no shame in talking to experts or professionals who know a lot about such things. I’m not an expert. But the action / knights energy of the reading suggest that you do what you know to do to make things better, seek knowledgeable advice when you don’t know what to do.
Two cups cards hint this has to do with emotions more than external or physical circumstances. That is the mind part of mind-body holistic wellness. It also touches the spiritual aspects of mind-body-spirit in balance. Improvement in any one of those areas is going to have benefits in the other areas. Managing stress / emotional health can support physical situations and vice versa. This is speaking of general principle, NOT about any specific impressions or situations.
Energy Moving Away: Nine of Cups
Cups as a suite represent closest relationships, not just romance as some think. It can include any kind of important relationship: friends, family, children. In this case, it doesn’t feel like the energy is moving away from you as much as it is a change. There is a little bit of advice and a little bit of cautioning here. There is a danger of psyching yourself out a little bit, reading things as more negative than they really are. The advice is to be steady and try to see things as they are and not reading things into it that really aren’t there. If you aren’t sure, ask. The nine of cups in particular has to do with close knit family celebrations and traditions. I see this card a LOT during the fall and winter holiday season. There is a much greater sense of comfort and hospitality with other decks than there is with this one. If you get a chance, google Ellen Dugan’s Witches Tarot for this card. Mark Evans’ artwork for the card captures the feel of your card better than this does.
Seasons change. Families change. Celebrations and holidays change, especially as young ones get older. It is easy to become sad or overly nostalgic. On the other hand, what greater joy than seeing children grow into caring, thriving adults? The nine of cups is a happy card. It showing itself in the ‘moving away’ position does not, in your case, mean that the happiness is moving away from you. That part hints at the risk of you isolating yourself from happiness. Instead of seeing change as a loss of old times, try to embrace change in the family as normal and happy and an accomplishment for everyone. This card is reminding you to celebrate the new times even as the old times move away.
Energy Now: Knight of Swords
The knight of swords is a card of action and daring and courage. The message here is DO something. I get the feeling it has to do with self-care. DO something to take care of yourself. DO something…any small thing that will feed your sense of accomplishment. Do something that is just inside your comfort zone. Find something that you enjoy to no end…DO something that you enjoy and that gives you joy. It’s a pop culture, back of a mug silly little platitude, but one I read that we should “do yourself into a new way of thinking, not think yourself into a new way of doing.” I see that as speaking to the mind-body connection and holistic wellness. I get the feeling that this is also nudging you toward some sort of activity for health and wellness. I don’t take health questions and never ever comment on medical or heath conditions…I’ll post more about that policy in the blog in coming days if you like….but what comes to mind here is something gentle like yoga, walking outside, mild stretching…something that encourages mind/body health and stress reduction. I suggest that you find a class, or consult a holistic wellness expert or at the very least look into some sort of meditation perhaps. Mind-body wellness seems to be a big part of this cards energy and advice.
Energy moving toward you: Knight of Cups
In the old days, this card was the dashing and handsome stranger. Another classic meaning is one of messenger. It is the messenger energy that I’m sensing for you. Hold tight. Wandering what is next and wondering what to do is top of mind for you right now, as we saw in your question. I’m sorry I can’t be more specific, but this card is letting you know that the answers are on the way. I don’t have any sense of the details right now. I know this is exactly the kind of vague, evasive, useless nonsense that skeptics use to criticize intuitive readings of any kind. They aren’t wrong. It’s hard to put this card into words, but I think what this is saying is “God helps those who help themselves” in a sense. Knights suggest discovering your own power and ability to act and do. The knight of cups specifically is letting you know that encouragement and emotional support … likely from spiritual sources … is on the horizon. Stand up for yourself now, and that will help the spirit of good news and a feeling of closeness with your spiritual supports come to you as you walk the path ahead.
This isn’t a matter of superficial self-confidence. The energy here is about refocusing on the energy of surviving and turning that into an energy of thriving.
Red colors and crystals support the root chakra that has to do with that sort of energy shift. Red jasper, red spinel, anything ruby red colored comes to mind for you. It is a powerful, fire energy.
I also see a red jar candle, something you can safely use. And I get the fragrance of cloves. Not just some pumpkin spice fall blend, but deep rich cloves, maybe a little cinnamon but not much else. If you like fragranced candles or room scents, maybe try something that is very SPICE scented.
Wearing red might be helpful too.
And there the energy steps back.
I hope you find this helpful…that goes both for the person who so generously allowed this AND for all of the blog followers. Please, lets all send thoughts of love and support to each other. An individual reading is very unique, BUT appreciating Tarot and all that is can do is a COMMUNITY. Anyone with an interest in Tarot can lend their energies to helping each other.
Intention is everything in energy work.
Thank you for reading. Please, if Tarot interests you at all, follow the blog. If you are reading on a laptop, the email sign up is near the top of the right hand column over there ->
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If you would like your own unique Tarot reading by email you can order HERE 24/7 no appointment needed.
Shrek: No! Layers. Onions have layers. Ogres have layers. You get it? We both have layers
from “Shrek” copyright 2001 Dreamworks Pictures, quote via imdb.com
Layers mean complexity. Layers apply to all sorts of things that are actually more complex than they seem at first glance; ogres, onions, cakes and – you guessed it – Tarot.
Reading Tarot for yourself is actually quite simple. In a couple of hours I could teach you to do good DIY readings for yourself. (Related: PeaceTarot ebook)
Reading for other people is another story. High level professional readings are, like onions and ogres, more complex than it seems on the surface. That’s the whole point of them. A professional reading can gives you extra layers of insight and experience that you can’t get alone. Two heads are better than one. Two eyes give depth perception (related post: parallax) The two of us working together gives your reading another layer of understanding.
Sometimes layers talk about authenticity. Sometimes you have to peel back a few layers to get to the real heart of the matter. We’ve talked about authenticity and public Tarot practice before, after my Modern Oracle Tarot work was re-branded to TaoCraft Tarot (related: what’s in a name, Shakespear’s Roses, Spell Your Name)
That’s all well and good, but consider another aspect of layers: growing new ones. Interestingly, actual onions grow on the inside. New layers are added at the core while older outside layers get dry and thin and ultimately fall away. In this, onions give us another useful metaphor.
In the medical field, and no doubt many other professions, continuing education is a condition of licensure and employment. You have to keep learning and keep current if you want to keep working. Whether it is required or not, whether it is career related or not, lifelong learning is a respected mark of excellence. Learning isn’t just formal education. Learning comes from experience and experimentation and the living of life. Artists’ work evolves over time. Any person’s point of view can evolve over time.
And so, the “Modern Oracle” layout is evolving. I’m calling abort on the video / text hybrid format. It was an experiment that failed, and I’ve learned something important from it.
Remember how deeper layers are often perceived as more authentic and how old layers of growing onions turn papery and fall off? It’s time for the 5 and 7 card Modern Oracle layouts to evolve, to become more authentic, to show more of their inner complexity. The video hybrid isn’t the way for that to happen. The names of layout card positions are changing. It’s a tiny detail that you may not even notice from your side of the Tarot table. On my side of the table it is important shift in mindset. This allows me to fully and authentically follow what intuition and spirit shows me.
I wrote the initial layout meanings to create a bridge from old fashioned, predict-the-future, fortune telling layouts to a more modern advice, guidance and empowerment reading. I wrote the Modern Oracle layouts specifically to show the power of your choices over your future. Cards that once were called “past, present and future” in the old style became “lessons from the past, current situation, and moving forward.” Predicting the future evolved into making an action plan.
Now it will go one step further. I in my minds’s eye, I see a reading in terms of dynamic energy flows, not a concrete road through time. As Modern Oracle layouts become TaoCraft layouts, we will let go of time and predictions entirely. If the Modern Oracle layout was like GPS map for your path ahead, the TaoCraft layout is like a GPS traffic update with a weather report.
Card 1, lessons from the past, will become Fading Energies, symbolizing energies that are moving away from you. These are things that need less of your attention.
Card 2, current situation, will become Current Energies, the energies that are strongest, and deal with things that need your attention in this moment.
Card 3, moving forward will become Growing Energies, energies moving toward you, or gaining influence in the path you’ve currently chosen. It still isn’t predictive. It is still intended to guide you, help you prepare for possible conditions ahead. Think of it like a weather report. It doesn’t tell you exactly what will happen to you during your day, but it can give you the chance of rain or sun while it happens.
Card 4 will remain Choices. It is still placed under the current energies card and at the center of the layout because that is still the place of power. Empowering your choices is still the heart of the reading. The choices card will take on a more advisory tone than before. Instead of suggesting how to persist or how change your path, it focuses on whether changing or whether staying the course is the wisest thing to do.
Card 5 is still Alternative Path just like before, showing the most open alternative path you if you decide a change is needed.
Card 6 Helping Energies and card 7 Potential Challenges are the same as always, and speak to exactly what the name implies.
Long story short, if you are dead set on a specific “accurate” prediction, you aren’t going to like the new TaoCraft layouts. If that’s the case, you need the Zombie Catyes/no readings like we did the other day. Even then, you have to realize it isn’t 100%.
If you are ready for next level, dynamic energy readings, I can help. Welcome to TaoCraft Tarot.
Another way to understand reversed (upside down) cards in a Tarot reading.
I don’t know who enjoyed the cartoons more, my daughter or me.
Kids in the early 2000s had way better shows to watch than we did. But then, I’m old and decrepit and had to wait for Saturday to watch them. Still, Spongebob and Jimmy Neutron rocked.
One of the funnier bits in Jimmy Neutron was when Jimmy and Cindy used double negatives to get the teacher to give them permission to leave the classroom. When Carl tried to use some sort of complicated quadruple negative, all he got from Mrs. Fowl was a loud “Sit Down, Carl!”
Sometimes reversed Tarot cards are like Carl’s double negative attempt and they need to sit down.
Energy flows like a river. Tarot can point out where the current flows most freely…and where there are rocks in the way. Sometimes there are whirlpools and eddies and quiet pools. Reversed cards can make things go in circles if you get too tied up in them. There is a general notion that if a card turns over upside down (relative to the person doing the reading) its meaning is also reversed, presumably flipping the card from positive to negative connotations. Sometimes a reversed card is generally felt to be a negative omen, regardless of the specific card or meaning.
If the card points to the dark side of life in the first place?
If the reversed bad card is turned into a good card, why not just throw down a good card in the first place? Isn’t there more to it than that? Doesn’t that rob the reversal of any meaning? So what if it does?
Reversed cards can be difficult for beginner readers, exactly because of these swirls of energy (and questions) and the double negative style of communication. This is why I tend to tell reversed cards to sit down.
Double negative communication and any difficulty with reversed cards begins from a place of absolutes. The root mistake is to think a card has a fixed positive or negative connotation in the first place.
My method for dealing with reversed card is to view it as neutral regardless of orientation on the table. Take today’s card, the Hanged Man as an example. Let’s give it the ‘stagnation’ meaning today. For someone who has been harried and hurried and pushed, a time of being “stuck” might be a gift of enforced rest just when it is most needed. For someone who is rested and ready to move, “stuck” is a source of enormous frustration. To the first person, if the hanged man is read as meaning lots of new starts and forward momentum, which indeed could be negative and stressful for someone already too much on the move. For the second person, reversed hanged man and the connotation of forward movement is good news, not one bit negative in any way. The card and its message is neutral, not matter how it falls on the table or which side of its nature steps forward. The good or bad, positive or negative is assigned in context by the sitter (Sitter or seeker means the person getting the reading. When you read for yourself, reader and sitter are the same person.)
By beginning from a position of neutrality about the base card meaning, allowing the client to make any ‘positive’ or ‘negative’ judgement about how the card’s message applies to them. It makes it easier to read a reversal: take whatever meaning steps forward to you. If it is reversed, that simply means that the idea, life lesson or energy movement is blocked or challenged in some way, like a whirlpool outside of the river’s primary flow.
Or, it may mean nothing other than random chance in a deck that has been used and shuffled.
Let your intuition be your guide. If no intuition steps forward, then default to method. In this case, make the base card neutral in good vs bad, consider all the possible meanings for the card, and take the reversal to mean slowed or challenged energy surrounding whatever the card is addressing.
Class dismissed. You can stop sitting down now, Carl.
Here in the U.S., literally at the exact time as the election results were being announced in favor of President-elect Biden, Trump’s lawyers held an inept and thoroughly mocked press conference at “Four Seasons Total Landscaping” a lovely garden supply place nestled between an adult bookstore and a crematorium. Seriously. You can’t make this stuff up. Internet hilarity has, of course, ensued. As a result I can hardly look at the word “seasons” and keep a straight face. The “Seasons of the Year” layout name had to go. I offered to give a reading to the person who could come up with the best new name for it. Know how many people participated? None. Zero. Nobody.
*sips hot cup of schadenfreude*
I’m over it.
Not the laughing at the fall of the worst administration in U.S. history part. THAT is actually pretty entertaining. I’m over finding some cutesy-pants name for the layout. “Year Ahead” says what it is. Clear, straightforward, it works. I’m also over trying to “market” what I do here. I am a wise, skilled, experienced psychic. I’m here if you need me. I’ve done my part: Made my presence known, put things in order, and put a candle in the window metaphorically speaking. The sign on the cyber-door says open.
Beyond that, I can take a hint. None of the promotions have ever really connected with people. It feels like all the giveaways and special offers come from a place of fear and worry. I like to imagine I had a chat about the whole marketing thing with my fictional, snarky, dgaf alter-ego, Zombie Cat.
We’re both over it.
It’s just not the right vibe for this place. TaoCraft is about authenticity, simplicity, honesty, compassion – all the treasures that a Taoist influence has to offer. All of the layouts are now available all of the time, including Zombie Cat’s yes/no. The prices are as low as I can afford to make them – all of the time. It’s a fearless, solid, steady, and reliable energy. Really good Tarot needs that kind of environment.
Tarot is a respite in an emotional storm. Tarot is a light bulb over your head just when you thought you were all out of ideas. You can’t build those things out of solicitous, cutesy-pants, attention seeking energies.
If you want real, genuine, honest, skilled, experienced…and yes, affordable…Tarot guidance, I’m here for you. Normal pants and all.
Distance Tarot including the Year Ahead and Zombie Cat’s yes/no layout is available for order anytime, no appointment needed on the HOME PAGE
The queen of cups and the four of cups have been showing up a lot lately. Most of the professional Tarot readers I know have had the experience where a message for us will piggyback through the same cards as the message for our clients. Especially if there is a repeating meta-pattern. You’ve seen it. Remember the way Pentacle cards kept turning up and gave a pattern of advice that seemed relevant to the general pandemic zeitgeist in addition to the individual messages for the blog (that you saw) and the individual messages (that you didn’t see)
The same thing happened here. There has been a little tweek to the website and business-y end of TaoCraft that has been niggling at me. It was one of those six of one vs half-dozen of the other kind of things. It was super minor, no hurry stuff, so I just hadn’t yet done a reading for myself (it is, after all, that elfcon 1 time of year and handmade gifts don’t care about pandemics) Then, wrapped up in a bow like a gift from the universe, cards piggybacked my answer in along with all the other messages.
Not only does that give me my personal answer right along with the other information, it reaffirms what I’ve observed and believed alabout Tarot all along: The right message will find you one way or another. It might be through cards that repeat until you get the clue. It might be a sudden epiphany of unrelated dots that suddenly connect. It might be pure synchronicity. But one way or another, your guidance will come. My advice is to, whenever you can, respond to the tap on the shoulder before life has to hit you in the face with a frying pan.
The four of cups is associated with meditation. I tend to fall into the trap of thinking that an answer will come DURING meditation time itself. But that isn’t always the case, I’ve found. Ideas still come at the usual weird times as when I’ve let meditation practice slip. The light bulb still clicks on in the shower or while washing dishes or on a long drive. That spontaneous process seems to happen more easily and with more clarity during days and weeks when meditation was part of the overall mix of life.
Life will bring answers sooner or later, in one form or another. The right message will find its way to you. A relaxed, quiet mindset helps that process flow.
Answers come in their own time and timing. We may not all be able to go sit under a tree and think. But we can all make time to just let our thoughts flow by. In those times without striving or grasping, the way is made for the answer to find us.
Some would say a box of chocolates. Others of us might lean more toward a word that sounds like bitstorm. Chocolate or otherwise, sometimes you just don’t know where it is going to splatter.
Not knowing is part of life, and and it is unnerving as heck. Nobody likes it. Trying to cope with the unknown comes in different forms. We can prepare for it, and make contingency plans as best as you can. It is warm and comfy to wrap yourself in if-then logic. If X happens, then I’ll do Y, but if A happens then I’ll do B, if C happens then have mercy….
I don’t blame people who want predictions. Predictions are uncertain in and of themselves, so they only push life’s uncertainty back a step and hold it at arm’s length until facts and reality sets in. Advice and guidance are more effective. Rather than a prediction that still might or might not materialize, guidance adds a degree of information, a tiny bit of knowing that increases both our comfort levels and our ability to make contingency plans.
Imagine driving on a long road trip, and not quite knowing where you are. But ah-ha! A little sign on the side of the road lets you know that you are on highway I 79 going north. If I keep going straight, I’ll get to Erie, as long as I don’t drive into the lake…or get stuck in a surprise snow squall. So watch for where to turn, stop before you hit water, make sure your cell phone is charged and bring a coat. The sign (Tarot reading) doesn’t predict anything about our road trip, but it tells you the direction you are headed – good news if you are headed north, but if you wanted to go south, you have a choice to make about how to turn things around.
But that’s the practical side. What, other than facing our fear of it, is the value of the unknown? Is there one?
I think the mysterious and unknown is our portal to spirituality.
That is how I define spirituality, in fact. Spirituality is how we, as individuals deal with and engage with the inevitable, inexorable mysteries of existence. It is the diametrical opposite of religion. Religion is external, dogmatically seeking to make mysterious knowable even if it is at the cost of authoritarian, exclusionary, judgmental thinking. Spirituality makes the unknowable – not into the knowable – but into our friend.
It is ok not to know everything or have easy answers to everything. If the journey is more important than the destination, then the contemplation of the mysterious is more important than the comprehension of it.
I make meditation beads. I made one for myself recently. I have no idea how many beads are on it. I just strung however many beads were in that loose package. It’s not a size of bead I typically use, so there was no easy guess how many wound up on the strand. I could have counted them, but I chose not to. I could count them now, but I still choose not to. That mala reminds me of the mysterious parts of life. Because it is unknown, but could be, it symbolizes a connection between the known and unknown, the magick and the mundane, the material and the spiritual.
Not knowing is the bridge between the known and unknowable.
It’s OK to not know everything, even if it is a little frightening.
“I will not fear. Fear is the mind killer. Fear is the little death that leads to total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will allow it to flow around me and through me. When the fear has passed, I will turn my minds eye to the path where the fear has gone and only I will remain.”
Interactive Tarot is easy. Watch the video above, and pick a card. Pause the video if you need more time. Then keep watching to see the reveal. The daily meditation for the card is below.
The free one card digital InkMagick reading by email offer continues on the special offers page (link in the menu)
Animal Wise Tarot by Ted Andrews used with permission
Left: King of Cups. Mr. Andrews associates this card with dragonfly through the eyes. Dragonflies have large compound eyes that are able to detect far greater subtlties of light and color than can human eyes. This guides the dragonfly in navigating its world. In other decks, the King of Cups is also associated with guidance of a different sort. Although the suit of cups is often associated with romance and relationships, in this case it resonates with the alchemy association with the element of water, and in turn with inution. The King of Cups is a mentor, and your cue to look for real-world advice and guidance from someone with more experience. “Get the life hack from someone who knows what they are doing” in other words. BUT there is another thread to this card. Sometime the mentoring is more esoteric. Sometimes this card is a cue that the energies are right to explore spiritual topics like vision quests, spirit guides, guardian angles and so on. Only you and your intiution can tell you. You are your own spirit guide and your own best advisor whether you need to look for practical outer world advice or look inside for your spiritual path. Listen to the cleric within.
Center: Six of Swords, “Dove” Doves are lovely gentle birds, and we are surrounded by them more than you might think. Mourning Doves aren’t afraid of the suburbs or the countryside. Pidgeons are related to doves, and they aren’t afraid of suburbs or cities either one. Heck, I’ve seen those guys take on a bus. Think pidgeon (aka the rock dove.) This is a week to do compassion your own way just like pidgeons do being a dove in their own way. Doctor Who and the “Witches Apprentice” episode comes to mind with its idea of “fierce compassion” Do your spirituality your own way this week. Compassion and contemplation can be done with gusto. The best person to lead that kind of spiritual practice is you. Follow the cleric within.
Right: The Emperor “Eagle” I remember seeing a bald eagle up close at a rehab facility, where the individual could not be returned to the wild because of its injuries. They. Are. Huge. Not a bird to be messed with in a dark alley. Eagles are a good analog for the Emperor card which is about confidence, and utter competance. Here in America, Eagles are associated with freedom, strength, and protection. An innate quality that goes along with those things is the ability to think, and critically evaluate for onself. You are the Emperor of your world within. Trust your own eagle eyes and trust your own ability. This is a good week to learn, and learn confidence in your own ability. You are the emporor of your inner world. Decide for yourself, you are your own chief cleric within.