Day Two at RS14….
Well, first….evening of Day 1. I attended a 9:00 p.m. session led by Rachel Pollack, which focused on the Gods and Goddesses revealed through the Tarot. I’m crap after 9:00 p.m. My brain folds up into giggles and bad analogies, which is why my clients don’t get late-evening appointments. But because it’s Rachel, I went and am sooooo glad that I did.
A class with Rachel is more like a relaxed chat over wine and tapas, woven with delicious stories of her time abroad. My favorite was of a visit to Greece (I think???) in which a goat led her and her partner down a darkening, foggy hill to safety before leaping off the path and disappearing. She believes the goat was a living embodiment of Artemis and you know what? I believe her.
The class showed us how to identify the Gods and Goddesses through the symbols of the Tarot. My Girl Brigid didn’t need a whole lot of symbolism to let me know She was there:
Question 1: Who is Present?
Answer 1: Earth Mother/Goddess-Queen. Duh.
Question 2: How do They Help me?
Answer 2: Wheel of Fortune–continually pushing me to do more shit.
Question 3: Ace of Wands, Rev.
Answer 3: Something about inner-flame….but also there’s the thing about the Ace of Wands challenging me not to laugh-spit my coffee out when shows up.
Question 4: How to Activate their Best Energy?
Answer 4: Queen of Swords. Learn to use a sword.
Thank you for a wonderful class, Rachel!
This morning, I had breakfast in bed (translation: eating last night’s fries with the covers up to my chin while watching animal shows with Hilary.) I was late to Heatherleigh Navarre’s class, but when I got there, it was soooo worth leaving the comfort of bed and the view of terminally-ill newfies finding non-shelter homes. Heatherleigh’s question for us was, “How do you know that you know what you know?” It seems to be a theme this weekend–academic view of Tarot symbols versus intuitive views of the cards. The discussion was built around the aversion many Tarot readers have to embracing the word psychic.
Heatherleigh identifies as a psychic who uses Tarot, and clarifies that being psychic is not about being a mind-reader, which is what she says when rude people at parties play “Test The Psychic.” The word “psychic,” she pointed out, comes from the Greek “of the Soul.” She also mentioned situations where she is asked to do a psychic reading without relying on her cards. To that, she said, “If you ask me to do my work without the tools of my trade…it’s like asking me to build a birdhouse without glue or nails. Sure, I might be able to do it, but it’s going to suck and no bird is going to want to live in it.” Heatherleigh then credited her mother with the origin of that fucking perfect statement. Here’s hoping I can make it to Heatherleigh’s Boston Tea Room next year as part of my book tour!
Next, Caitlin Matthews took the stage and pointed out the “Line of Sight” in the Tarot, where you use the cards as telling points. Where are they look at one another? Follow the line of where the characters are looking…which gives a new aura to the cards, eerily beautiful and creepy, both. She pointed out that in the oldest Tarot decks, only five of the cards face forward: The Hanged Man, Justice, The Devil, the Sun, the Moon. These are the cards from which no one is exempt. No one can escape their line of sight. I noticed in our own Tarot of the Boroughs that at least a third of them face forward which means we probably set up a lot of unavoidable omens. Sorry, kittenz.
I suck at afternoons. I just want to nap. But I couldn’t bear to miss Sheilaa Hite’s class which focused on the beauty of intuitive readings and relationship pairings. I picked up a bunch of new things including this gorgeous Diamond Spread with my Tarot of the Boroughs.
The night descended into chaos……as Gina Jean and I demonstrated what it’s like to be an NYC-bar Tarot reader, which is more like being an air traffic controller. I should probably have spent less on decks and books and saved more to buy off the blackmail.