meta data for this page

Notes & Thoughts


My introduction to Tarot happened one sunny afternoon in 2015, while standing in line at Barnes & Noble. My then-fiancé (now husband) encouraged me to buy the cards, after he saw me playing with the Running Press Tarot Kitplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigRunning Press Tarot Kit

Deck Notes

This is the first tarot deck I ever bought - it was an impulse purchase at my local Barnes & Noble. While we were waiting in the checkout line, I noticed this kit in one of the racks nearby, and my husband suggested I get it, since I mentioned I'd always been curious about tarot, given my upbringing.
at the register. I played around with the kit a few times, but didn't really find it very interesting beyond the initial novelty of something I was taught as a child was necessarily satanic and evil.

I discovered Robert M. Place's Alchemical Tarot (5th Edition)plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAlchemical Tarot (5th Edition)

Deck Notes

This was my first serious Tarot deck. I found it by accident and was very strongly drawn to the artwork and heavily symbolic imagery. The Alchemical Tarot isn't a particularly intuitive deck. I didn't find many of the images to be very intuitive without the context provided by the artist's book. That said, Robert Place does an excellent job of maintaining consistency throughout his artwork's images and symbolism. Similar symbols and images are used thr…
in 2017 by what I can only see as kismet. I came across images of this deck while searching for something online, and I was immediately drawn to the esoteric woodcut style of Robert's artwork. I bought the deck, which comes with a little white book, but I didn't use it seriously until the next year, when I finally bought a copy of his in-depth Tarot book, The Tarot, Magic, Alchemy, Hermeticism, and Neoplatonism.

Robert's detailed breakdown of the evolution of sorcery, magic, and occultism in the west created a foundation for me to start investigating more deeply the various folk beliefs and spiritism of my American and European ancestors, and it's through this research that I've developed my own view of the Tarot and its usefulness in modern life. I definitely recommend Robert's book if you're interested in learning more about Tarot and the history of magic, with less of the ahistorical, metaphysical narrative that's common with many New Age authors and the original author of modern Tarot theory, Arthur E. Waite.

Articles In This Series

  • My Reading Philosophyplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigMy Reading Philosophy

    My approach to Tarot is as rational as Tarot can be. That is to say, I don't view Tarot as a tool for divination, predicting future outcomes, or controlling what any free-willed person does. I've found, pretty consistently, that Tarot readings serve to reinforce important cultural and ethnic archetypes that are innate to white, Western, European-descended civilization
  • Tarot and Channeling Spiritsplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigTarot and Channeling Spirits

    So, this. Tarot brings with it a lot of baggage. A guy named Alec Satin made a name for himself on the Internet for about twenty years as an expert in Tarot reading and interpretation. In 2015, he experienced a significant conversion event and became a devout Lutheran Christian, at which point he not only ceased his own Tarot work;
  • Tarot and the Abrahamic Occultplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigTarot and the Abrahamic Occult

    Tarot enjoyed a resurgence in western interest in the 19th century, during the Romantic era. Romanticism was a pendulum-swinging reaction to the stoic rationalism of the Enlightenment. Remember, it was the Age of Enlightenment that created the framework which has protected the United States from tyranny for nearly 250 years. Romanticism sought to bring back emotion and spiritual awakening. It was in this movement that several Christian factions were created, inclu…
  • Tarot for Self-Improvementplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigTarot for Self-Improvement

    Looking at both the history of the Tarot's major arcana and the use of folktales, imagery, and language to create archetypes through which various elements of the human condition are manifested, I've found that Tarot can be a very useful tool for self-reflection and self-improvement.
  • Tarot Weather Forecastingplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigTarot Weather Forecasting


    This winter (2021), we were rather impatient for the snow to start in earnest, and I started looking for ways to use Tarot with the weather. I found a very interesting blog post from 2013, and tried this spread...but my lack of intuitive reading skill made it very difficult to get anything out of the reading.
  • Using Tarot for Divinationplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigUsing Tarot for Divination

    I was raised an evangelical Christian in the Midwest, surrounded by people who very much believe divination is a serious sin. While I tend to dismiss any argument premised on arbitrary morality, I've come to the conclusion that there is an objective and pragmatic reason to avoid divination - if it doesn't work, it's misleading, and if it does work, it's addicting. I've never used tarot for divination - I've never tried to channel a spirit or connect with some other pl…