5 hours ago
How did you get started with tarot?
I first got into it in 2002, when my younger sister Kath (R.I.P.) showed me this fully-illustrated introductory book on the subject from my dad (R.I.P.) that was just bought a few days before our discovery. I was reading his Interview With An Angel paperback at that time, & I was bored out of my wits. So when I started reading about tarot, I got hooked upon realizing how modern decks can be so visually appealing & how psychology can come into play. I have the blame the ff. cards for my fascination: the Fool from the Tarot of the Witches (1977) & the Page of Wands from the Mythic Tarot (1989). My then boyfriend was sweet enough to provide me with those decks that very year, & I’m glad that my childhood friend + high school classmate = loyal tarot patron decided to get me another copy of my very first deck from the UK in 2005.
But actually, it was my production associate + former college org secretary Em Alberto-Lozada who was very interested in tarot in 1998, when she wrote about the subject for our Technical Writing class, while we were still Liberal Arts students. I was more intrigued with how Ouija boards worked — & other oddities (Charles Berlitz, anyone?) — but no way am I going to ever dabble in such.
So what is your ‘weapon of choice’, so to speak?
Aside from the aforementioned decks, I also have the Osho Zen, Universal (a crisp, streamlined variation of the traditional Rider-Waite) by Roberto di Angelis, Golden Tarot by Kat Black, Sacred Rose, Haindl, Chinese, & Housewives sets. I also have 2 oracle decks: Osho Transformation & Book of Dreams. I’m considering the Victoria-Regina Tarot next. I guess my obsession has to end there when I finally acquire the latter, hehe. Oh, but there’s this fabulous majors-only deck by Lynyrd Narciso which I’ve named the Les Adorables deck in 2004 that I want to own, along with the Tarot of the Magical Forest by Leo Tang, even if I already have the latter's Lo Scarabeo release. Maybe I should want the Fenestra deck from Thailand as well.
I've already let go of my 1st edition Vertigo Tarot deck, but I'm thinking of getting the reprint soon.
Who (& what) are your influences/references?
Definitely Juliet-Sharman Burke & Christine Jette. I also like Mary Katherine Greer, then Rachel Pollack is also noteworthy. Hopefully I can go the annual Tarot Reader’s Studio in New York, & publish my own book. There are many good tarot books out there, but it’s up to the interested to choose & find whatever suits his or her fancy. I also make use of popular inspirational books, like Paulo Coelho’s Warrior of The Light, Leslie Levine’s Ice Cream For Breakfast, Veronique Vienne’s The Art of [Living] series, & uhm, even Greg Behrendt’s He’s Just Not Into You. HAHA. I also quote song lines I like (or just know if relevant, without necessarily liking them).
I'm also piqued by Simon Brown, Stephanie Gailing of PlanetaryApothecary.com, & all these other wonderful astrologers & Tarot readers I keep quoting from Twitter.
Are there certain days & times when you choose to attain auspicious readings,
like what other seers practise?
I can read anytime & anywhere, depending on my mood. But the best days for me to read so far are Mondays, Tuesdays, & Thursdays, or early Sunday mornings (for myself) or lazy Sunday afternoons to evenings (for others). I prefer to read someplace cozy, if not totally quiet. That allows me to concentrate more as well as assure my & my client’s safety & convenience. My preferred mode other than face-to-face is via e-mail. I used to conduct sessions via SMS, but that’s just too painstaking & costly, & even if I can charge slightly higher for this kind of transaction, I'd rather not. Not just yet. I actually hate texting.
What can you say about the Death card? Does it talk about actual death?
Will you be able to read how, when, & where we can possibly die?
Unfortunately, in my own harrowing experience, yes, the Death card can actually predict literal death, but it was too late for me to realize its possibility during the last couple of times I was able to sense it. It is true that Death comes like a thief in the night, & we have no way of knowing exactly when we’ll depart, that is why we should prepare ourselves for it, while savoring Life for what it’s worth.
There are little deaths we go through in our lives, but these are just phases or the beginnings of other important things to happen to us, like puberty, graduations, marriage, employment, & so on. Death, then, in this respect, only describes change — & some people, like yours truly, have a hard time coping with adjustments or the sort, so it’s still a pretty painful archetype to deal with. But I’m trying my best to remain positive about it, & I encourage everyone else to not worry so much.
How do online/remote readings work? Are they as accurate as up-close-&-personal sessions?
They can be very strikingly accurate, & while I was in the process of studying the Tarot during my first few months, reading remotely/online was what I was focusing on. Satisfaction guaranteed. I will have to accept fees first, though, via various electronic channels, before commencing with the readings, & I can deliver my emailed reading within the day. It would take me up to 48 hours at the most to send the reading via email. I will inform my clients if their readings would be delayed, & advise them to wait, if the current circumstances make it rather difficult for me to give them the details outright.
It is my patrons' responsibility to make sure that the email address provided for a reading request will be able to accept all email messages coming from me.
Clients have the opportunity to clarify any part of their readings once their request has been delivered. They are also encouraged to wait between 1-2 weeks and re-read their readings to see if those have more meaning for them. I will provide a follow-up response within the context of the original reading, & usually that will suffice. But if clients have additional questions which require further cards to be drawn or a deeper level of insight to be discussed, they will be advised to request a second reading, & another payment must be sent.
I will store Tarot readings for about a year. Patrons may request a copy of their Tarot reading at any time during this period. Patrons are also entitled to holiday specials (freebies, for example) once they avail regularly &/or have at least 3 referrals within the year.
& yes, I personally draw cards from my deck of choice, & give an elaborate guide to my clients to the intricacies of their readings. I have a right to refuse to read about certain issues, btw, & will only focus on issues that directly concern my clients. But if they insist on only those restricted topics to be covered, then I cannot continue with the reading. Please be advised that I do not offer refunds. I have never issued a refund before, nor have I been asked for one. My time alone to discuss readings with interested parties has value, as I can be making more productive use of that by dealing with clients who are gracious & cooperative & considerate enough to work with me for their own development & uhm, entertainment.
Yes, Tarot readings still are mainly for entertainment purposes, not to be as substitutes for actual professional help.
What else can you assure of interested querents about your profession?
I am only a reader, collector, & interpreter of tarot cards; so please seek medical, legal, & financial advice from the proper authorities. I have people ready & willing to testify for me regarding how satisfactory my readings have been ever since, even if I was just fumbling through the process in the beginning. I keep readings confidential, of course, & I wish to achieve more than just a working relationship with my clients, regardless of age, gender, race, or religion, as long as they are willing to have their cards read. I know what it’s like to have nowhere to turn to when one so desperately needs to be heard, & I want to provide an avenue for it. I think I have that knack, anyway, even when I was as young as 14. As much as I wouldn’t want to read for anyone below 18, sometimes I do take special consideration, especially if the minor is accompanied by a parent, just like what happened to me recently. A teenager’s life can be quite a torture, as yours truly has personally experienced, so yes, I am doubly kind towards youngsters. I’ve even read for someone as young as 7 years old, & she seemed receptive enough to what the cards had to say to her.
I also advise clients to pray & visit their respective churches after a session when the idea is suggested through the cards. Yes, I am still Catholic, though fascinated with Zen, pantheism, & so-called candle as well as color magick.
I value trust & goodwill, so confidentiality is guaranteed. I will not share my clients' information with anyone, unless with their actual permission.
Oh, I also run a small online international tarot community via LiveJournal.
Why charge so much?
As much as I don’t want to involve money into this, I have to charge for my time, patience, paraphernalia (books, decks, Internet, transportation, for starters), & skill. Times are hard, so it pays to be generous with one another. Good compensation = better quality readings = better karma, hehe. Seriously, it’s one way of detaching myself quickly from other people’s energies after a reading for my & my clients’ protection. I think my fee’s minimal compared to other forms of relief, like drugs or self-help books, for instance, & what other readers can offer. All I would ask for was a Mass card + offering & a scented candle in honor of my departed youngest sister, but people would hand me bills instead. My first ever "paid" reading got me a huge box of brazo de mercedes, though, because that was on my birthday, 3 months after I got a hold of the introductory guidebook, but I never really liked that particular kind of cake (haha, WTF). Nevertheless, I'm thankful.
Why identify with the Star? I thought you liked the Queen of Swords best?
I can relate to all female figures in the tarot, yes, but the Queen of Swords was the very first female figure to appear in my very first reading for myself ever, & upon learning more about her, I’ve re-realized who I really am & what I’m forever going through. She’s a female counterpart of the Hermit, only perhaps much younger & sterner. I find her most appealing in the following decks: Tarot of the Witches, Chinese, Shadowscapes, & Mythic.
But you can only identify with certain cards for some time. They have lessons to teach us, & when it is time to move on, we tend to focus on other figures. Thus, the Star emerges. I am so much more hopeful & grateful now that I’m older, & I guess there’s no better time than now to fully express such aspects of myself.
So that’s it?
I believe the Tarot is a good tool for self-help & realization. I am not doing this to amaze anyone of my “powers”. The Tarot cannot predict a fixed & fated future, but can show us the influences at work in our lives at the moment, whether from the past or present events. We all have the power of choice. Think of the Tarot as your own Choose Your Adventure kind of book/game, that whatever you decide upon will help shape your own story. I am here only as a guide — through the cards — NOT your savior. I can’t even save myself just yet, honestly. But I’m working my way towards my own emancipation, & hopefully, so will you. I see myself practising Tarot on a grand scale in the near future. I only wish to share how I found enlightenment through this pursuit, & how the art is so much more sophisticated than what other people might usually think about it. I want to break free from that stereotype. Like other hobbies, this is most definitely worthwhile.