This is Part II of a two-part post. You can read Part I here.
The Second Dark Spread
Fast forward five more years, and Mark and I were doing a six-month special reading, one for each other. I don’t remember now what his was like. But I remember mine. Nearly every single one of the 28 cards was negative, or positive cards in reverse. Nearly all of them were major arcana cards (which usually means drama, big events, upheaval), and the cards included The Tower (more upheaval) and Death.
Mark read his way through all the cards, while I rejected the dark, dramatic theme of the spread, which was promising all sorts of dire events three to six months into the future, and chose instead to use the milder forms of the interpretations. Endings, yes. Possibly chaotic endings, but bringing new beginnings. And I promptly forgot about it, or tried to convince myself I had.
That Christmas, nearly exactly three months later, my brother died on Christmas day, and my father confessed that his cancer had metastasized and he had been given six months.
I didn’t think of the dark spread straight away – it was a horrible, horrible Christmas and New Year, that included among other things, a short separation between Mark and I that drained most of my energy.
But about a year later, when we sat down to do our readings once more, we both recalled the dark spread and realized that it had called the future with almost uncanny accuracy.
Do I believe in the divination ability of the Tarot?
Truth? I’m still making up my mind. Those two dark spreads have shifted me from total atheist unbeliever in anything paranormal to …well, let’s wait and see. I’m rock solid atheist in all other areas of my life. I want to see the proof, the evidence and hard facts at all times, thank you. When it comes to the Tarot, I think of myself as agnostic – still undecided …and wavering.
But you don’t have to use Tarot simply as a fortune telling tool. Tarot readings are a great way of getting insight into what’s on your mind, and revealing issues and problems that you hadn’t noticed or fully focused on in your life. They can offer solutions – often unexpected ones.
They’re also one hell of a writing tool. When my imagination runs dry (or I’m feeling lazy or curious) I will use the Tarot for everything from character building, to plot building, to what-happens-next? questions. Tarot cards can help choose themes, and answer simple yes-no questions.
Not everything they suggest is useful. And I don’t use everything they suggest without question. Often the suggestions they make are stupid, but with a small twist, the stupid goes away and I’m left with a highly creative idea. And sometimes the ideas they offer are so out to lunch, I go back to delving into my own imagination without aid. But that doesn’t happen very often.
Using the cards is a way of short-circuiting the common characters and plot devices that I usually think of first. The cards provide suggestions that aren’t my habitual ideas, which helps me stop repeating myself. After 50+ books, I sometimes forget what I’ve written before, and falling into story ruts is a real danger. The Tarot nudges me away from my habitual ruts.
They’re fun, if you choose not to take them too seriously, but I’m slowly moving beyond that “just fun” stance into more interesting territory. If I had a few months to spare, I would learn them more thoroughly, with a coach and mentor, and go at it as full time as I could, to see where it took me. But I don’t have that time luxury and probably won’t for many years. So for now, I read a little bit, deal spreads here and there, and enjoy the thought-provoking insights they provide.
Have you ever had your future read? How did it go?