On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me…

6 Geese a-Laying

The number six is often a number associated with the Sun; and therefore, health and healing. How does this relate to the cards?

I originally wanted to describe the basis for using your cards to create a healing ceremony, by making an active talisman layout. Then I thought about healing as it relates to cards, and that led me to something else I want to bring to your attention: Why do you practice and study cartomancy? Some possible reasons are:

  • For knowledge; and knowledge is power
  • Fortune-telling to entertain your friends
  • Divination because it is a spiritual calling (whatever that means in practice)
  • It’s a sideline for your magic(k)al persuasion
  • You like collecting cards for the art, and decided you might as well read them
  • They help you to creatively journal your life
  • Self-healing through reading, writing or meditation with cards
  • They unlock your psychic talents
  • They get your conscious mind out of the way for your psychic talents
  • You don’t feel intuitive without a physical prop
  • Healing others through their use
  • You want to carry on a family tradition of card reading

This is a list of reasons that came to my mind; I’m sure there are many more reasons beyond what is here. I started out with the idea that obtaining hidden knowledge would be helpful. A tool to navigate at-times treacherous waters sounded great, and as an added bonus, my cards of choice — the tarot — were an aid for spiritual and philosophical exploration and pursuit of magical practice (originally a la Golden Dawn teachings). Then knowledge became cool in its own right, and the idea of helping people with my knowledge became important. Finally I reached a point where I think that healing is an important goal of reading the cards. Whether it is for me or someone else, a reading can provide unknown information to assist decision making, and shed light on the poorly lit highways of life

This process is a means of healing, in the sense of making whole. If Maria wants to know when her cheatin’ boyfriend will come back to her, that is likely the precise fact she does want to know. But receiving guidance on her life in the process of a reading can help to heal Maria by giving her something to go on: perhaps hope, perhaps courage, perhaps self love. There is likely something that Maria needs to hear, learn or know and hopefully the reading will serve her in that capacity. Whatever the situation really is, we should not judge; but we should provide Maria a message from our tool. Maria has a chance to move towards well-being through this reading.

(I realize that gets into a gray area, because some readers will insist on rephrasing the question to focus on Maria while others think it’s presumptuous to impose our own values on the question. I have discussed this elsewhere on the blog.)

This is how I feel today. I’m sure my feelings on the purpose of working with cards will continue to evolve over time, and I may have a different opinion at this time next year. The point is that it’s important for me to know why I read, so I can direct my energy in that direction when I study, learn and practice the craft of cartomancy. I believe this is important for any card reader.

Do you know why you work with the cards? Feel free to share with us all, in the comments!