Trying to squeeze the answer you want to hear from the cards and/or the practitioner is a big no-no in my books. Asking the same question ad nauseum in new disguises creates dependency and screws around with your mind. Yanking cards from the tarot pack until your hopes or fears are justified sets you up for huge let-downs.
Imagine having a situation in your life that you’d like to discuss with a trusted friend. You visit Trusted Friend (TF), tell hir about your situation, and request advice. TF offers you the best counsel possible based on what you’ve told hir. You go home and stew some more. Next day, you visit TF again, talk about your problem, and s/he gives you similar advice as s/he did in the first chat. You go home. You ruminate again. You pop in to chat with TF yet again. By this time, TF has had it up to the eye teeth with the same old story, so s/he just tells you what you want to hear just so you’ll go away.
Imagine going to a tarot consultant in the same way that you went to TF. Imagine your Inner Teacher getting really fed up with the same old questions without any action being taken on your part. The tarot is going to mirror your wisdomsource’s fed-up-ness and mess with your mind. Not fun. Not helpful. An addiction to needing to know something can be as harmful as an addiction to any chemical substance.
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I used to offer “meet the public” tarot sessions at a bookstore in Toronto. One consultation stands out for me in a not-so-good way. The client and I talked about the cards in the context of hir question. Suddenly, s/he reached for the tarot deck and began to pull cards willy-nilly, tossing them randomly onto the table while barking, “Come on, there’s got to be more!” I calmly retrieved the pack from hir hands and said, “This reading is over.”
A few months ago, a person who had had two consultations about a particular topic called to have a session about the very same thing. This person had done nothing based on our previous explorations nor had anything about hir situation changed. I felt that I had done my part, so I gently and firmly said, “[Name], it seems to me that you’re looking for a particular answer and you haven’t gotten what you’ve wanted to hear. I’ve done what I can and you have all the tarot-based information you need about [name of situation] for now. If you’d like to have a consultation about something else, I’ll be happy to spend time with you over the tarot. If not, you don’t need an appointment at this time.”
Such behaviour is an abdication of responsibility for one’s own life. I won’t participate in such an interaction. My tarot practice is an ethical one. To explore sub-topics of a previously looked-at topic is fine. Drawing cards for fresh questions that emerge from an intitial consultation is perfectly okay. Forcing an issue, playing “tell me what I want to hear”, then getting huffy when a consultant/reader/practitioner won’t go along with it isn’t cool.
By all means, let’s cultivate healthy curiosity, but let’s not encourage quick fixes and hoped-for pat answers. The sacred art of tarot consulting deserves respect and consciousness.
These words from pages 62 – 63 of Oracle of Initiation by Mellissae Lucia sum things up nicely: “Do not ask the same question over and over again in a short period of time hoping for a different answer. That is insulting to your Spirits and may affect their willingness to offer information…Just because you are resistant to the message does not mean they are wrong. You may need to expand to meet the truth of what the cards are showing you.”
Image: The Devil from The Healing Tarot by Jennifer Elizabeth Moore.