30 Day Tarot Challenge Meme (Questions 26-30)

This posting will conclude the 30 Day Tarot Challenge meme, which I completed in 6 days because I’m impatient.

For the first five sets of questions answered, see the following:

Questions 1-5 (Day 1)

Questions 6-10 (Day 2).

Questions 11-15 (Day 3).

Questions 16-20 (Day 4).

Questions 21-25 (Day 5).


26. Have you ever regretted a particular reading, either for yourself or another?

No. I have no regrets for how I have conducted myself in all my past readings because I always give my best, but after the reading, I have on a few occasions regretted reading for that particular person.

27. Do you have a special time and/or place that you use your Tarot?

I like to read in the mornings. I can read anywhere, so long as it’s quiet, secluded, and I’ve got a few comfort crystals around me. I refuse to read at parties, cafes, conventions, or anywhere that people are bustling about.

28. Does anyone you know not agree with your Tarot practices?

Yes. My husband, for starters. Well, it’s not that he’s against it vehemently, but he does roll his eyes and walk away when he sees me dabbling. Also, I don’t openly advertise my tarot practice, so I’m sure if everyone in my life knew of it, there would be much greater backlash against it. Right now, only those I trust or complete strangers know of my tarot work.

29. Do you have a Tarot mentor?

Not really. Yes and no. There have been seasoned tarot practitioners who have taught me particular aspects of the practice, but no mentor per se.

30. Do you practice any other forms of divination? If so, what is it, and do you use them alongside the Tarot as to gain more insight or as something separate entirely?

I Ching. The Four Pillars analysis using Chinese astrology. The Lo Shu square. I like to combine tarot and the I Ching for a fusion practice.

* * * * * * * * * * *

Read the engaging and thought-provoking responses to the challenge from others in the tarot blogosphere:

30 Day Tarot Challenge Meme (Questions 21-25)

MajorArcana_Key_5_The_HierophantDay 5 of the challenge. 5 more questions.

See previous postings:

Questions 1-5 (Day 1)

Questions 6-10 (Day 2).

Questions 11-15 (Day 3).

Questions 16-20 (Day 4).

21. How do you feel when you do readings?

I try to feel the energies surrounding the client. It’s important to be open and empathic during a reading so that I can best serve the seeker.

22. Do you charge money or ask for other types of compensation for your readings/services?

Right now I don’t charge money. I ask for donations, token gifts to my loved ones on my behalf (hehe), or I agree to exchanges. I’ve been known to work for food. Boy do I love them cupcakes, especially the ones with buttercream. One client made me macaroons! ::heart:: I looove French macaroons.

23. What question do you most often ask the deck (or, ask on behalf of another)?

For myself I ask questions such as “how do I” or “what do I need to know about” that pertain to specific creative projects or ventures. That’s it. When I am reading for others, I can offer you statistics. About 51% of the questions clients ask are love related. 15% to 20% are work related. Now see the below bar graph for the frequency of question topics that clients ask me to read for.


24. How accurate do you believe your readings are (or, do they accurately convey messages from spirits/deity)?

Quite unremarkably, it depends. When I’m “in the zone,” I would like to say I am really accurate and can connect deeply to what’s going on in the client’s life. When I’m not in the zone, bleh. I go a-fishing. Or really, I just stop the reading and say, “hey, look, we’ve got to continue this some other time.”

25. What was the most dramatic/meaningful reading you ever did? (Not necessarily the most accurate.)

My answer will sound like a cop-out but it isn’t intended to be. Every reading I have ever done has been meaningful. The free one-card readings I do through FTN are meaningful in the moment. Otherwise, I wouldn’t bother doing them. Every full reading session I have done has been memorable. I can remember specific cards drawn for people who were complete strangers in readings done years ago. Some readings were dramatic because it touched the client to such a degree that tears were shed on sight. Others were meaningful because of how eerily accurate they were.  All readings for myself are meaningful because I don’t even bother consulting the tarot unless it’s something important.

If I had to choose one, I would say the reading I did for an established writer. The writer was struggling with a sophomore novel after the debut book received immense critical acclaim. There was a great deal of pressure to deliver the same success that the first book enjoyed. Writer’s block was setting in hard. The reading I did helped that writer move past the writer’s block and, in the end, published a second book that has been much talked about and praised in literary circles. That was cool.

Subsequent Updates:

Questions 26-30 (Day 6).

30 Day Tarot Challenge Meme (Questions 16-20)

It is now Day 4 of the meme, yet I’m two thirds of my way through the challenge since I’ve decided to tackle the 30 questions in 6 days rather than the full 30 days.

See previous postings:

Questions 1-5 (Day 1)

Questions 6-10 (Day 2).

Questions 11-15 (Day 3).

Now, on to the questions:

16. Do you ever use the Major Arcana without the Minor Arcana or vice versa?

Yes. I might use only the Major Arcana if I am interested in understanding the archetypes at play in a particular matter. If I have a question that is focused in one particular area, such as a work/career question, I may shuffle only the Wands and draw a single Wands card for insight, or if I have a love/relationships question, I will draw a single card from the Cups, etc.


17. Do you do readings using reversals? Why or why not?

Yes. Every detail and nuance matters. When a card appears in reverse, it indicates a different shade of the meaning associated with that particular card from the color it would otherwise take on upright. How a card in reverse interacts with the other cards in a spread landscape is also relevant, very relevant in fact. I can’t imagine myself not reading with reversals, though I do know many amazing professionals who don’t observe them.

18. Do you feel a “connection” to your cards?

Yes. What’s interesting is I have that old ass deck of Marseille I was talking about in Day 1 and a 20-ish year old Rider-Waite. For some time I thought I liked those particular tarot systems because they were more accurate for me than the others, but one day I picked up a brand new deck of the Tarot de Marseille and a brand new Rider-Waite and they just didn’t do it for me. I realized it isn’t the tarot systems that I was connected to; it was those two particular tarot decks that I have handled for so many years. I’ve “connected” to those cards deeply and it had little to do with the tarot systems they represented, but it was that particular deck that worked well in my hands.

19. Do you feel/think the cards “think” or have their own consciousness? What do you believe makes the cards “tick”?

No. The cards are just objects. We make them “tick.” We’re using our inner qi to will the cards into a cohesive pattern that will make sense to us and help us make sense of our lives.

20. Do you read for yourself and/or for others? Why or why not?

Yes, I do read for myself, though less frequently these days. These days I primarily read for others.

Subsequent Updates:

Questions 21-25 (Day 5).

Questions 26-30 (Day 6).

30 Day Tarot Challenge Meme (Questions 11-15)

It is Day 3 of the meme, which should correspond with Days 11 through 15, since each question is supposed to take up a full day of contemplation. Instead, I’m truncating it down to 5 questions per day to finish off the challenge.

See previous postings:

Questions 1-5 (Day 1)

Questions 6-10 (Day 2)

11. What spread do you use most often/prefer and why?

I used to have a strong preference for the Celtic Cross, but really the only reason for that was habit. I knew the spread like the back of my hand and it was comfortable. My practice has evolved and now there is no single spread that I use most often. I listen carefully to the client’s needs and usually custom-tailor a spread for that client.

12. Have you ever created your own spread? If so, how effective is it? (Feel free to show the spread.)

Yes. All the time. If it would serve the client, then I will incorporate the client’s religious beliefs, faiths, traditions, culture, or just his or her specific inquiry needs into the spread that I devise. My spreads are generally based on some sort of cross or sigil. I have found that these tailor-made spreads are astonishingly effective when applied in the most precise way to both the client and the question.

Here is one example of a spread I recently devised, called The Insight Cross:


13. Is there a card that continuously stumps you when it is drawn? Why do you believe this to be so?

Key 18, The Moon often stumps me. When it is the only card drawn, I get the meaning. However, when I need to understand it in the context of other cards, or even in the context of a client’s specific question, it is often difficult for me to explain The Moon as it pertains to our everyday life. Intellectually most of us can understand The Moon, but extrapolating its application is a little more elusive for me.

14. For what purposes do you usually use the Tarot?

These days, only to read for others. I do not read tarot for myself. Instead, I will patron another professional tarot practitioner for a reading. It supports their tarot business and I feel it’s more objective than me reading for myself.

15. How much emphasis do you put on the textbook meanings for cards, and how much stress do you place on the “feeling” you get from cards through their artwork/symbolism, etc. Do you do both, or one or the other?

My analysis begins with the classical meanings for the cards. However, I cannot stress enough how important it is to look at the overall landscape of a spread and see how the cards relate to one another. From there, exercise intuition to truly understand the holistic meaning of the card as it directly pertains to the client’s inquiry. How that can be done artfully and accurately is learned only through practice, practice, and more practice. You need to gain a great deal of experience before you understand the depths of intuitive reading.

Subsequent Updates:

Questions 16-20 (Day 4).

Questions 21-25 (Day 5).

Questions 26-30 (Day 6).

30 Day Tarot Challenge Meme (Questions 6-10)

I’m having fun with an internet meme that’s been circulating among tarot bloggers, and that is the 30 Day Tarot Challenge, though I’m blazing through it in 6 days, 5 questions each day. Perhaps that is defeating the original purpose of the meme, which is to ponder thoughtfully on each inquiry. I’ve adjusted that purpose a bit.

This is Day #2.

See previous postings on the meme:

Questions 1-10 (Day 1)


6. What was the first spread you learned?

The Celtic Cross. For many years, it was the only spread I used. That was the old school way of teaching beginners. Thankfully, tarot tutelage has changed these last few decades and students are now beginning with a more manageable number of cards.

7. What is your favorite card (both in terms of deck’s artwork and divinatory meaning)?

Ace of Cups. Upright, that is.robinwood_aceofcups

8. Which card do you dread pulling the most?

I’ve reached a point where I don’t dread any of the cards, but that comes with acquiring wrinkles and lines on your face, in other words age. After a while, life simply stops unnerving you. Tragedy and comedy will come as they come. You learn to roll with the punches, as they say. However, when reading for people who are not familiar with tarot, I dread pulling the Death card, because I have to be really artful about explaining the card to them and calming them down.

9. What card do you pull the most often? Why do you think that is the case?

Two of Pentacles or Ten of Wands, with seemingly equal frequency. It is the way of our modern world, I suppose. Everyone’s busy. Everyone is overburdened and juggling a bunch of responsibilities at once.

10. What card best represents your personality (or, is most often pulled to represent you in a spread)?

Queen of Swords.

Subsequent Updates:

Questions 11-15 (Day 3).

Questions 16-20 (Day 4).

Questions 21-25 (Day 5).

Questions 26-30 (Day 6).