The Pitfalls of Tarot
There are pitfalls of Tarot, both as a reader and as one who needs a reading.
My tarot online presence comes and goes depending on if I have something to say on a broad platform. In the 1990's and 2000's I could be found online in multiple tarot groups, a few which I either owned or moderated, I had my own websites, and if you read my about Marilyn page, you will get the full picture of my tarot career.
I stepped back at times when I thought I was getting too much exposure and attention. There were multiple reasons for this, through word of mouth people knew me and came to me and an inner circle of individuals knew where to find my services if they needed me. So I had the luxury of lowering my low profile and leading a more private tarot and spiritual life. Another, and more significant reason for dropping out of my online presence, was due to a few individuals who became thoroughly dependent on my services for every aspect of their lives. One man in particular requested readings from me multiple times a day, and after only doing four readings for him, I knew that this poor soul wouldn't open his front door unless I said it was OK.
I told him how I felt. He didn't care, he kept coming back. I told him I would no longer be available to him and I stopped reading for him. Yes, some other reader took him on and undoubtedly made globs of money on him. He was developing an unhealthy attachment to me and I could not take advantage of him.
Some tarot readers live for this kind of attachment. It brings in steady income for sure, but the price is too high. For me the price is self respect and integrity. To each her/his own and whatever lets us sleep at night.
I am an empty nested crone now, and I have the time, resources, and supreme good fortune to live the kind of life I want which includes my desire for revisiting another online presence for myself. (With a new name, I no longer use a pseudonym since I no longer care about being outed.) I have a lot of tarot knowledge in my brain after thirty-nine years as a reader, and I want a place to preserve some of my insights. They say nothing online ever disappears. Perhaps my modest contribution to the tarot world may be preserved in this small way and some day my words will resonate with someone. I will probably eventually gather up my blogs for the content for a book before I abandon this website.
In the past year, I've created a modest Instagram account in order to have a small online presence. As it became more popular I had the confidence to create this website and blog. I also created a fledgling tarot group on facebook which I may let die since it isn't thriving (Tarot Anonymous) and I have even joined a few facebook tarot groups which for the most part, annoy the hell out of me.
I'm very disappointed and unimpressed by most of what I see. People pull cards to determine if they should buy a particular pair of shoes, and then open it for discussion, and actually have other readers chime in about what the cards meant in terms of buying that particular pair of shoes. Seriously?
Damn girl, if you like the shoes and they're comfortable, buy them!
A few months ago I was engaged in an online discussion with another tarot reader about resolving an issue. I have a moral compass and the right thing to do seemed crystal clear. My colleague said he couldn't decide now and had to do a reading about it. I scratched my head and bit my tongue. All I could think was, 'Dude, you need to depend on the cards to tell you what the right thing to do when it comes to hurting or not hurting another human being?'
This kind of trivialization and over dependency on tarot is too much for me. It breaks my heart. The whole point of tarot is to help you navigate life with the purpose of being a fully spiritual being. If after twenty years of reading tarot you still need the cards to buy a banal product or decide not to harm another person, I think you missed the point.
I can't remember the last time I did a big sit down reading for myself. For the most part, I know what I need to do. I can see the cards as they are represented and played out in in my life. I can identify when I am being challenged by the spirit of one card or when I need the lesson of another. Yes, I do daily one card readings for myself, and I also do a one card reading for my Instagram followers as a method for getting the most out of the day. But I am not so crippled that I can't decide on whether or not I should wash the car or renege on a promise I made. After thirty-nine years of reading tarot I think that should be expected. If after all these years I still need to grab my cards multiple times a day, I probably haven't learned anything about or from tarot.
I understand people who don't read tarot themselves and don't have that lifelong benefit wanting a reading once a month or a few times a year for clarification, or even more frequently if they're going through a particularly difficult life experience. I mean heck, that's what I'm here for and it's what I do.
But it's like this:
When I was a teacher I'd tell my students, "My job is to make you not need me."
Instilling a lifelong love of learning is a teacher's true objective.
Tarot works in much the same way. I am the tarot reader, my job is to help you not need me.
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6/30/2016 03:28:56 pm
You are so right about this. Self empowerment is the true purpose of tarot..freedom is the ultimate goal and that includes freedom from the tarot too. And I've often been mad at the commercial nonsense that goes with tarot these days. Good to know there are people like you who genuinely care for the true essence of tarot. Thank you for sharing your valuable insight and perspective here..it's a great gift to tarot lovers of a new generation!
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