Tarot, Diversity and Snobs – oh my!


Was checking the mail for Menage A Tarot this morning….

(shameless plug: the new episode “Test Tubes and Tarot Decks” is now available on the website, iTunes, Stitcher and TuneIn)

One question came in that no doubt will spark conversation, if not an episode…

(I can’t wait to hear what David and Kate have to say about this! I enjoy talking with them like you wouldn’t believe and always learn a ton from their insights)

We’ve talked about how Tarot fits in with culture and society in general (“Out of the Tarot Closet” “Today’s Tarot”). But, the listener asks, what about how we fit in within the Tarot community itself? What do you do if you are “scolded” for shuffling the cards wrong or what have you?

This reminds me the old “Tarotbytes” post about “How Do You Know If A Psychic is Ethical

I know that sounds like a crazy connection, but I think there are common elements to both: Diversity and respect.

Tarot readers are a wildly diverse community. It is kind of stretch to even call us a “community” at all, really. There seem to be some generational threads and traditions that run vertically, teacher to student but not much horizontally, little structure between peers. There are as many ways to read Tarot as there are human beings picking up the cards, each way as good as the next. It’s hard NOT to fit in when things are that colorful and patchwork (and diverse and beautiful).

By that same token, an ethical psychic is honest with themselves AND their potential clients about their own style, their own place within the diversity. That way sitters/learners can find what they need. Just because there is a personality clash doesn’t necessarily mean that a psychic is unethical. Some learners need a flamboyant, mysterious approach while others need a down-to-earth style to help them find their own truth.

To me, Tarot “snobbery” is just absurd. There is no ultimate authority about how to read cards because the cards are just one piece of the intuition and personal growth puzzle. We all have intuition to one degree or another, just like we all have some degree of vision or hearing or touch. The cards are just a tool, a key for unlocking that innate intuition. The process of unlocking intuition is an individual, personal thing. What is utterly right for one person might utterly toxic for another. Part of learning how to do readings is learning how to undergo the intuition-access process for oneself. Saying your way is right while others are wrong is an act of ego, not an act of healing or service or intuition. There are many paths up the mountain of enlightenment – and up the mountain of Tarot reading – all equally valid. It’s all just a matter of finding the path that is right for you.

So how does all that connect with ethical psychics and fitting in with the Tarot community? The individual nature of accessing our intuition (be it with Tarot cards or with another method) is how we get the amazing diversity.

The other important element is respect. I believe an ethical psychic has respect for their own process, for their colleagues’ process, and for their client’s choices. I believe the Tarot community is one of respect, so in turn I approach Tarot readings as a healing art…not unlike spiritual guidance, counseling or energy healing like Reiki. The ethics of Reiki, holistic health and spiritual (not religious or medical) counseling is steeped in respect for diversity. None of these things ask belief of the people it helps…religions do that, not spirituality, not intuition, and not Tarot. Tarot doesn’t ask dogmatic, codified belief and so is able to give respect to many beliefs – and many styles of Tarot practice. If an ethical psychic is one that gives respect to the sitter / learners beliefs, how can we offer any less courtesy to our colleagues? If we respect each other’s beliefs and processes, everyone fits in, everyone has a voice, and a part.

When respect meets diversity, it is easy to ‘fit in’.  When respect and diversity stand together, snobbery is a delusion while ethics, respect, intuition, and spirituality all thrive.


Connect with Menage A Tarot podcast: menageatarot@gmail.com, www.menageatarot.com, or @menageatarot on twitter.

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