Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The Science of it all

I had a reading with a young man recently and I started with my usual question – have you had a tarot reading before and he said over a hundred. Well, that’s a lot of readings!  At the end of the reading he said that one of the reasons he went to so many psychics was that he was studying physics and was interested in the science of psychic phenomena.  So I gave him my blood transfusion example, and I realize that it’s in an old blog so I’m reprinting it here.  This is longer than my usual blog posts, so hang in there!

My prediction for psychic phenomena –

Let’s go back in history for a minute. People always saw blood and had theories about blood, but until much later than you would think
(1900) they did not know about blood groups. The rudimentary tools for blood transfusion were around in the 1700’s and the first human to human transfusion was recorded in 1818.

When doctors first had the technology, they tried blood transfusions from strong animals to sick humans or from strong people to weak.  Unsurprisingly, most humans died, even after a transfusion, though more mysteriously for the doctors at the time, some did not, and in fact got better…  Because the doctors didn’t know about blood groups, they couldn’t make sense of their results. Indeed early transfusions were from animals to humans (and why not, we eat and digest animals, there was no obvious reason why we wouldn’t be able to take their blood directly) but of course most of the humans died, and those transfusions were soon banned throughout Europe.

So my prediction for the years 3010 – so grateful if someone could keep this alive in the internet for that long for me to be vindicated – my prediction is that there will be a strong and solid science for psychic phenomena, and they will have a reasonable explanation as to why sometimes studies worked and sometimes they didn’t.

Perhaps, like blood types, there are psychic groups, and some groups enhance each other and some negate each other and the types of people who become scientists fall more into the group A mental abilities, and the types of people who work on their psychic abilities are group B and Group A and Group B negate each other…

There have been studies on prayer and bacteria. I’m wary of the word prayer and would prefer a study of meditation or focused thoughts and bacteria. However, it has been shown that bacteria that is focused upon by human brains grow better. Yeast seeds focused upon grow better, Yeast seeds with negative thoughts, grew worse than the control group (yeast seeds which were ignored.) We get lost in the idea of prayer but I’m interested in what the human brain is doing here, what signals it is giving out, and how it is impacting on the world.

There are many, repeated studies, showing that meditation (focused thought) has a real, measurable impact on blood pressure, heart attacks, anxiety (which seems like cheating, because that’s a mental issue to begin with, but it has physical symptoms which meditation can allay) What we think about these automatic systems in our body, can affect those normally unconscious processes.

All of which brings me back to Tarot. The theory of Tarot is that while shuffling the cards, the person imbues their energy into them. That energy then affects which card goes where, and then when you read the cards, you see what is going on in that person’s energy.

Doesn’t sound like it makes too much sense, does it? And yet, time and again, I see it. I see people with money worries draw only money cards; people with relationship issues draw cards exactly about their particular relationship. A woman came and saw me and I said, your house card is in disarray and your lover’s card is upside down. And she said, she had just moved, because her husband had an affair and the divorce was just finalized. I promise you that I don’t say that to every person who comes for a reading! Each time the cards fall into a different pattern, and that pattern reveals something true and real about what is going on in that person’s life. I don’t have the science to explain it, but then again, I don’t need it. I can see the reality in front of me.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013


Anthonius Claessins, c. 1538-1613
To give thanks,  we must have gratitude; but gratitude is such a subtle thing – it requires an awareness of what we have, what others don’t, how fortunate our lives are.  My son is studying European history and I said to him that his life today, with its running water, antibiotics and soft clean sheets and clothes, is of a better quality than most nobles were.   

Four Seasons,  by Philip Haas,  New York Botanical Garden
To be alive today, in the West, in America, in New York City, means you can easily access some of the greatest art, thought, humor, food in the world.   But to make any of this meaningful we need to add people.  Thanksgiving is a time to reconnect with friends and family.  For without love, life is hard, even if the bathroom taps are gold…

So I am thankful for living a life better than any Kings five hundred years ago, for the internet which offers endless entertainment, and for my clients, friends and family, who give it all meaning.  

Friday, November 22, 2013

How do the cards know?

Recently a client came to see me, whom I had not seen for several years.  Three years is a long time,  the old cards would no longer be relevant,  but I looked them up anyway (I used to make notes,  I now make a postcard of every reading,  photograph it and give it to you,  so you have a copy of all the cards you drew and so do I.) 

The old cards were all about work, she was at a career junction then.  This time, there were no work cards at all,  and she was ‘a little freaked’ in her own words,  to see the 3 of swords at her core,  and a scattering of swords throughout her reading.  How did the cards know?  she asked me.  Last time they were so sunny and optimistic about work (and accurate, she landed a great job) and now it’s all about heartache and pain, how did they know that? 

I said that’s what the cards do: they reflect your energy, where you are at right now.  People sometimes say to me,  well the cards will say that about anyone, and I say no,  if your love life is great, you draw great love cards,  if your work is awful your cards show that too.  The cards really do shift according to what is going on in your life at this point in time. 

For those worried about her future – she drew the Ace of Cups, the current relationship was no good,  but love is not far away for her!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Finding the relationship lifestyle that works for you

I read this story in the New York Times about people Living Apart Together. 

In my readings I hear about thousands of relationships.  I hear about people who live together happily in a tiny studio apartment, and about people who deliberately bought 2 apartments in the same complex but not on the same floor.  I hear of people who have separate bedrooms and of those who have trouble sleeping when their partner travels. And the upshot is – all of these are equally good if they work for you. 

The couple in the studio is too close for me, but it worked for them for a long time, and even when they moved, it was to a not to a much bigger place.   I particularly liked the woman whose lover taught singing from his home, so he was on the 6th floor and she was on the 8th floor of a different tower in the same complex, so his work did not infringe on her. They’ve been living like that for 12 years and very happy with it.  I often tell new couples that moving into the other person’s space can be tricky, best for both of you to move in together to somewhere new, if/when that time comes.

What I love about New York is that there are always options here.  If the ‘norm’ doesn’t work for you, let yourself explore the possibility of something else.  Don't let anyone else's judgment hamper you.  If it works for you, then it’s working…

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Finding Success in Hardship

There’s a facebook page I love,  called Humans of New York, random shots of New Yorkers and a sentence or two. The sentences are often surprisingly profound. 

"I'm trying to help my kids find their way."
"What's the most difficult part of that?"
"Letting them fail."

by Akvamarinka

Hardships as much as successes make us who were are and some of the qualities we love most about ourselves grow from dreams that didn’t happen and then what we did next… 

One of the commentators said: Though none of us would ever wish it for our children, a little hardship is not a bad thing. Teaches resilience and dispels entitlement.
by Abagail Ekhert
The other reality is that hardship, in one form or another, comes to all of us. If we first find it at 40, it feels much worse than having swum through it at 25.  Hardships, disappointments, small failures help build resilience, determination and self-knowledge.  Too much hardship can break us, that’s true, but the right amount of hardship can make us…  

And I’ll end with the excellent Michael Jordan quote: “I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”
So when hardship comes, remember it comes to all of us and it can be fertile soil indeed!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Talking to my younger/older self

Tarot is about predicting the future, but as we all know, we don’t always listen to the predictions. There was a very funny 30 Rock Episode where Alec Baldwin is visited by his future self, to warn him of outcomes from today and in typical 30 Rock style, zaniness ensues. But would we listen to our older selves? 

The common way to think about this is to go back in time and talk to your younger self, and that’s valuable, what would you say?  But another way to think about it is that a future self comes to you now, today.  What do you think the future self would say to you about things today? 

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Getting confirmations

In June I did a reading for a man who had been abruptly terminated by his company and he was understandably upset.  But the cards were very upbeat, they saw his getting back on his feet, things being as good as they had been before, that he had nothing to worry about.   

He asked about his boss, the owner of the company, and the cards were clear that that man was in a far worse position, that his pain and regret would be worse than my client's.  I said you lost your job, but you will get another one, he’s going to lose more… 

And this week he sent me a clip from the New York Post – the company has just gone bankrupt, the former boss was being sued. My client said to me that he had believed me, but he couldn’t believe how accurate I had been…

Always good when I hear back from clients and get confirmations about their readings, even when it's about difficult things!

Beautiful Pictures by Megan Aroon

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Today's poem

I love poetry,  I think it’s like chocolate truffles – tiny but dense,  rich and carrying far more weight than expected – but unlike truffles,  they are calorie free!

Here’s one I read by Mary Oliver this morning:-
Today I’m flying low and I’m
not saying a word.
I’m letting all the voodoos of ambition sleep.

The world goes on as it must,
the bees in the garden rumbling a little,
the fish leaping,  the gnats getting eaten.
And so forth.

But I’m taking the day off.
Quiet as a feather,
I hardly move though really I’m travelling
a terrific distance.

Stillness. One of the doors
into the temple.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Life and Purpose

I do readings for people in transition, and one transition is retirement.  I meet people who worked hard all their lives, and have saved enough and have their own homes and come to me and say, why am I drawing the 8 of swords,  what’s going on here, why am I not happy?  And my answer them is that everyone needs a purpose. 

We all need a reason to get out of bed.  If you don’t have a purpose, you start to feel lost and hopeless. Especially goal driven people, who worked so hard to create this retirement, they want to feel respected.   

One woman told me flat out that she would not volunteer, would never ‘work for free’. But she is 72 and can’t find anyone to hire her and does not need the money, so won’t take work she feels beneath her.  She’s unhappily trapped.  Her daughter was so grateful when I said, don’t think of it as working for free - think of it as mentoring.  She had made her money in real estate, and there are many young women, starting out in real estate, who could really benefit from an hour a week with her, talking through their problems, getting her help and advice.  She nodded and said that she could see herself doing that, that felt purposeful, respectful.   

Friday, August 30, 2013

The life lessons of So You Think You Can Dance

So You Think You Can Dance is a dance competition where young and lithe dancers compete in all genres of dance,  starting with 20 dancers,  with 10 being the magic cut off (they go on the group tour afterwards) and the top 6 being the lucky memorable ones, culminating in one America’s most popular dancer...

We watch it every week. They are leaping and pirouetting and strutting, their strengths and weaknesses out there for everyone to see and critique. After their dance, soaking with sweat and not yet having caught their breath, the judges talk about the straightness of their lines and how high their shoulders were. 

And at the end of every show, they huddle together like puppies and watch as one of them is sent away.

And the life lesson I learn?  Be willing to risk it all.  They are so brave!  They really try so hard and they are talented, but most importantly they are out there.  They have, as the judges so often like to say, left everything out on the floor. They don’t hold back to protect themselves. Their vulnerability is sometimes hard to see, but their striving is so admirable.  I love watching them, and I do hate to see any of them go.  I know I was not as brave as them when I was their age.  I was too busy protecting myself, unwilling to risk that sort of public judgment/failure. But they haven’t failed.  They are lifting both themselves and their far less agile audience up.  I wish them all the best of luck, but I wish us all their courage.  If you want something, put it all out there, leave nothing on the floor.  You may not get it, but you will know that you truly tried, and you will absolutely learn the right life lessons on the way… 

Thursday, August 15, 2013

What do Tarot readings give you

A good tarot reading shows you how the present is creating your future.  Your actions today are the foundation for tomorrow’s accomplishments or failures.

The Tarot is like a pure clear mirror, showing you where you are putting your energy now, and how that is going to affect the future.  It illuminates what you know, but then shows you how your present is going to impact the next 6 months. 

by John Breitweiser
One of the most common responses I get it is ‘you’re right, you’re right,  I knew this, and now I can see how it’s playing out.’  My most difficult readings are when people don’t want to talk about the present, they just want a different future, and I have the heavy task of telling them that the future will be no different,  if they don’t alter what they are doing now…

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

New Schedule

Sometimes the universe sends you messages –

Ace of Pentacles,  from Steampunk tarot
Lately I have had a spate of requests for shorter/cheaper readings.  I know that the hour gives people enough time to get their questions thoroughly answered, but I also know that $140 can be a bit steep.  So I’ve decided two things –
Firstly my hour long readings are now permanently $120 and won’t be returning to $140 in the near future.

Secondly I will offer a limited amount of half hour readings each week for $70.   Guess we will have to talk faster!  I’ll try this for the rest of August and September and see how the half hour option works...
9 of Pentacles, by Stephanie Pui-Mun Law - Shadowscapes

Friday, August 2, 2013

Queen of Cups

 When you look at the Queen of Cups, the woman entranced with the fantastical cup that she has created, it is a warning from the cards not too get too lost in your own thoughts, to make sure your fantasies match reality. 
 But that can sound a bit judgmental.  I found this amazing mosaic by Irina Charny,  (I just love her work!) and to me it just looked like the Queen of Cups.  Here the Queen is losing herself in her own music,  and that just felt to me like a much more loving way of viewing her.  
 I just have to edit this because I saw this beautiful Queen of Cups by Robert Scott - the artist whose deck I bought through Kickstart a while ago (he's yet to finish it,  but it's definitely going to be worth the wait!)

and this is what he writes about her:
"The Queen of Cups represents the role of water in the context of water; the emotional center of the court cards. She is kind, affectionate and comforting. She is perfectly accepting - receiving others without judgement of any kind, and stands for calm reflection and introspection. She is the queen of the still pond, the surface of which is a mirror. The Queen's own nature is hard to grasp, for when you gaze into her depths, you only see yourself."

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Was he unfaithful?

One question I find the tarot can always accurately answer is ‘ is s/he having an affair’ 

However recently I did a reading where a woman asked,  ‘did he sleep with other people while we were together?’ and she drew 
She felt he could have been a good boyfriend/ but also felt huge anxiety/ she needed to see the situation very clearly, without rose tinted glasses or being overly romantic/ and she was getting lost in her own thoughts.
That is not a clear answer and I was puzzled.  Usually the cards are really specific around this question.

6 of cups
So I asked more about the relationship.  Turned out her big fear was that he would be pressured by his family to have an arranged marriage.
Now I can understand the cards. They indicate that he did not sleep with anyone else while they were together, but he was emotionally unfaithful; he did let his family introduce him to other women.  There was no sex, but he did think about marrying them…   
The second I said that she nodded vigorously, that made complete sense to her.
4 of cups

Those cards, they are so subtle...

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Loving what we want to see

A friend and I were discussing the recent movie version of the Great Gastby,  and I said something like,  Gatsby's tragedy was that he didn't even know Daisy,  he never really saw her.   And it reminded me of this quote from Gone with the Wind...

 “I loved something I made up, something that’s just as dead as Melly is. I made a pretty suit of clothes and fell in love with it. And when Ashley came riding along, so handsome, so different, I put that suit on him and made him wear it whether it fitted him or not. And I wouldn’t see what he really was. I kept on loving the pretty clothes—and not him at all.”
Scarlett in Gone with the Wind

People come and tell me things like this all the time... it's so important to see the person as they truly are,  and not put your own suit on them...

Monday, July 15, 2013

Flirting with New York

Often people come to me, knowing that the old relationship is over, but still entangled with that person, and ask me if they should date other people.  The cards often tell them that they need a break, to give them time to adjust to their new situation - they draw the 4 swords or the hermit.   

But doing nothing is hard: you feel empty, you want some action to fill the void.  So I tell them to go and flirt with New York. This is an amazing city, but it’s also a tough one.  If we don’t take advantage of all the marvelous things that go on here, we are paying the price of living here – huge cost of living, crowds, lack of personal and psychic space – without taking the benefits.  

So I tell them go out with humans (as opposed to dating) old friends, new friends, potential friends, and flirt with New York. Find music, lectures, theatre, and museums.  It doesn’t have to be intellectual, go to new restaurants, comedy shows, and find the best Bloody Mary in the city or the perfect brunch place. Go play tennis,  cycle,  improve your one mile time.   Flirt with the city and that will help let the old feelings go and give space for new relationships to start.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Tarot of Quotes

That Pinterest - aside from me having a new rule of not visiting the site after midnight,  it has given me great pleasure.  There are such a range of Tarot images out there,  that explore and shade the meanings of the cards.

I have discovered some new tarot decks there that I hadn’t seen anywhere else.    Tarot of Quotes is from an English tarot card reader who is creating something really beautiful (it’s still a work in progress) I love that the internet lets me access all these amazing thoughts about tarot,  lets people put their own imagery up -  even if it's only one card,  one new image can just tweak your understanding and let it fall into place. 
After a reading we usually decide which cards were the most important and I recommend that you Google the image,  find a version of the card that speaks to you and then put it up in your office or on your computer, to let it keep guiding you.