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Disa
06-10-2008, 03:11 PM
Hello,

I'm doing some research to help with a character's idea of what a tarot card reader might be. (A character who has never been to a reader)

So, if you are a person who has never been to a tarot card reader, I would love it if you would share what you think of them.

Would you consider going to one?

If so, what is it that you expect them to be able to do.

If not, why wouldn't you?

If you are a person who has been to tarot card readers, can you think back to before you went for your 1st reading and tell how it either met or didn't meet your expectations?


Thanks in advance.

sheadakota
06-10-2008, 03:17 PM
Ok- honestly- I want to g to one, but I don't think I ever would. I can't deny that I think they are all frauds, just actors in it for the money, telling you what they think you want to know- But still...- nope not going to one.

Calla Lily
06-10-2008, 03:39 PM
I went to one when I was a teenager. Very generic reading, but she didn't do the whole Maria Ouspenskaia routine--she dressed like an average, everyday person.

About 17 years ago, I visited a psychic in a last-ditch effort to find about a friend who'd fallen off the face of the earth 3 years earlier. She also dressed like an average, regular person. She opened with a prayer and also used Tarot cards. Alas, she was nice, but the reading was 100% useless and wrong.

So while I think Tarot is fascinating, I haven't encoultered a reader who seemed like they had a gift.

HeronW
06-10-2008, 03:40 PM
Been there, done that and I also do readings.

Some readers use dramatic settings: tapestries or scarves on the walls, statues, prayers & blessings hung up, incense and candles burning, others use an old cardtable set under a tree.

There's hundreds of decks out there for readers--and the use is based on what you conenct to. There's the traditional Ryder Waite & its varieties, Thoth deck, assorted Goddess and Fey decks, etc. I use the Tarot of the Cat People. I've known readers who make their own cards.

The cards are used as a focusing device to connect the reader and the querant. There's assorted layouts, some traditional, some created by the reader--again, what feels right.

As a reader I've been amazed at the accuracy of what I come out with for complete strangers but I trust my intuition, and the Higher Power to let me know what's going on so I can tell the person who asks.

Fortune telling actually happens all the time: weather predictions, the stock market, sports quotes on game scores--card readers tend to get a bad rap for being wrong vs a stockbroker, a weatherman, a bookie, etc. yet people will listen to them and cheerfully lose money without calling the police etc.

PM me if you have more questions.

Siddow
06-10-2008, 03:46 PM
One of my co-workers was a reader when I was pregnant with my first child, and she did readings at my baby shower. She told me that I would need surgery after my son was born, but not to worry, that everything would be fine, and yep, she was right. I was just fine through the entire pregnancy and six weeks after, I was in surgery.

I thought she was full of it until the doc gave me the news.

eveningstar
06-10-2008, 04:10 PM
I've had a handful of tarot readings, some good and some lousy. I also read myself though not professionally, I find it easier to read for people I know. I think the stereotype is still dark room and candles and incense, and a female reader. Though there's usually a pretty good gender balance reader-wise as far as I've seen.

My first reading was years and years ago, done by a friend in a coffee shop. I remember being surprised at the things she was saying (some pretty on-mark, some not so much) just from pictures on cards that seemed (to me, at the time) to be kind of vague.

I think sometimes I'm still a bit surprised at how mundane and everyday tarot reading can be. It's really just a deck of cards and someone who (hopefully) knows and understands their respective meanings.

Unique
06-10-2008, 04:15 PM
Hello,
(A character who has never been to a reader)

So, if you are a person who has never been to a tarot card reader, I would love it if you would share what you think of them.

Would you consider going to one?

If so, what is it that you expect them to be able to do.

If not, why wouldn't you?



Thanks in advance.

I would be scared. That's why I haven't been.

This is why: I was raised a Christian and I still am one. I feel there is just enough there to be correct - just touching the soul energy would be enough to do either good or ill.

This assumes of course, the reader does have connections in spirit. Angels are spirits and I believe other things have spirit as well. Spirit is only energy, but it's also so much more than energy that I feel untrained hands ought not to fool with it.

I'm also aware that religion or spirit is a good way to make money off people that are spiritually aching. When you want something so bad you believe it - does that assist to make it come true? I don't know.

And that's why I don't play with it.

It feels too real to me.

>''<

JimmyB27
06-10-2008, 05:39 PM
Tarot goes into the same superstitious, unproven stuff box as astrology and religion for me.
Come back when you have a successful double blind, peer reviewed trial.

escritora
06-10-2008, 05:46 PM
I asked a question regarding readings a while back and received great responses. Here's the link: http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=90617&highlight=psychic+readings

Mumut
06-10-2008, 05:47 PM
I wouldn't go 'cause I don't like throwing money away on nothing. But I imagine the reader would set up a scene conducive to hypnosis. There would be dim lighting, pictures on the wall of tarot figures. Not much external noise entering the room. Heavy curtains etc and two chairs at opposite sides of a small table. Introduction by a client would be needed, originally

Kathie Freeman
06-10-2008, 08:00 PM
I had a reading done at a Reniasance Fair (yes. I know I'm spelling that wrong) and it was a disappointment. The reader was dresed in street clohtes, which I din't mind, but the reading came out more like what I wished my life was, not the reality.

Kitty Pryde
06-10-2008, 08:11 PM
I wouldn't go to a tarot card reader, because what they do is pretend. That said, if I read a fantasy novel where tarot readings were real, I would enjoy reading it. Or a book structured around the different characters of the tarot deck or whatever, would also be entertaining.

gophergrrrl
06-11-2008, 12:22 AM
I've always known about the card reading, but never had much of an opinion on it; whether it was authentic and connected to the supernatural or just a bunch of random, vague information that nearly anyone could link to nearly anything. Then, when I met the man I've been with for almost five years now, and discovered that he reads, I became more interested in it. I always watched as he read for everyone else, and most of the time, was pretty accurate and quite revealing, so say the people who were in shock as to how he knew these things. I watched it for years, and each time, he'd offer to read mine, but I would decline. Something about it frightened me away. Maybe it was the idea that, being that he was often so accurate, perhaps he would read something for me that I didn't want to know, or something that would scare me. I was afraid to know anything further than what I knew at the very moment. Those were my initial feelings-- pretty much just fear. Fear of taking on the worries of tomorrow, today.

Angelinity
06-11-2008, 12:44 AM
i used to read Tarot at one time. It was fascinating (and fascinating) work -- people who came to me were regular people looking for patterns in a puzzle. from my experience (as a Tarot reader) there are two kinds of people who seek such guidance:

1. Strong characters. They work hard and play hard -- they wager great value based on instinct and have a lot to lose. Such people are vulnerable because they are open.

2. Weak characters. They fear many things, most of all the unknown in themselves. Such people are vulnerable because they are closed.

The inwardly balanced seldom seek guidance from outside. One must feel insecure in one's choices and abilities to cope before they will allow themselves to de 'discovered' via an occult science. It takes either courage or utter surrender to ask for such help.

DamaNegra
06-11-2008, 01:01 AM
I went to a tarot reading. The guy asked me too many questions and told me exactly what I wanted to hear. Fraud.

I used to do readings, and those came out okay, though I stopped doing it because of lack of time.

benbradley
06-11-2008, 02:09 AM
Hello,

I'm doing some research to help with a character's idea of what tarot card reader might be. (A character who has never been to a reader)
While not specific about a tarot card reader, this previous thread on "Psychic readings" may have good info for you, as well as some cantankerous back-and-forth bickering (I'm proud to have been on one side of all that):
http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=90617

So, if you are a person who has never been to a tarot card reader, I would love it if you would share what you think of them.

Would you consider going to one?

If so, what is it that you expect them to be able to do.

If not, why wouldn't you?
I don't feel a need to go to a tarot reader (though I've had plenty of other people attempt to predict what would happen in my life), but I've written a story about a guy who went to a psychic. I posted a link to it in that other thread.

i used to read Tarot at one time. It was fascinating (and fascinating) work -- people who came to me were regular people looking for patterns in a puzzle. from my experience (as a Tarot reader) there are two kinds of people who seek such guidance:

1. Strong characters. They work hard and play hard -- they wager great value based on instinct and have a lot to lose. Such people are vulnerable because they are open.

2. Weak characters. They fear many things, most of all the unknown in themselves. Such people are vulnerable because they are closed.

The inwardly balanced seldom seek guidance from outside.
I'd like to think I'm inwardly balanced. ;)

One must feel insecure in one's choices and abilities to cope before they will allow themselves to de 'discovered' via an occult science. It takes either courage or utter surrender to ask for such help.
What's this occult science? What's the science about it? I could see it called "occult studies" or "occultology." [and so it starts again...]

Disa
06-11-2008, 04:33 AM
Thank you all for your very personal responses.

I had a handle on the skeptics(Nothing wrong with a healthy bit of skepticism to keep you grounded) and, having studied the cards a couple of years myself, I have an idea of the readers point of view, as well.

What I didn't expect to hear, and I'm very greatful to know about, is fear. I really didn't anticipate anyone would have a fear of tarot. This may be something I need to explore further.

I read through the posts you guys linked me to, and though there is some good stuff there on both sides, I'm glad this one didn't turn into a debate.

I really appreciate you all taking the time to voice your opinions. It's really been helpful.

PattiTheWicked
06-11-2008, 06:16 AM
Chances are good that no matter what a person expects a tarot reader to look like, they're going to be wrong at least half the time. I think part of the "show" for some people has to include gimmicks, like dressing in Stevie Nicks' closet, having spooky music and lots of candles in a dark room.

For some of us, though, the point of the reading is not the "show" but the reading itself, and what good it can do for the person who has questions. I don't dress like a gypsy, I typically read cards at my kitchen table with a dog underfoot and coffee brewing, and Nickelodeon on in the next room while my kids wrestle on the floor.

Despite what folks might expect, for some of us, it's a a matter of substance over style.

Libbie
06-11-2008, 07:15 AM
Honestly, I'd never go to one. I don't believe in anything supernatural. That includes tarot readings. My opinion of tarot readers is that at best they're talented cold readers. Cold reading is a skill that doesn't take much refinement in my opinion. Anybody with two brain cells can learn to do it well. I feel that all tarot readers are charlatans, as are psychics, palm readers, and all the rest who claim to have supernatural abilities and take your money to give you to perform a parlor trick--that is, cold reading.

Angelinity
06-11-2008, 07:40 AM
What's this occult science? What's the science about it? I could see it called "occult studies" or "occultology." [and so it starts again...]

how's 'occult discipline' for ya? ;)

Angelinity
06-11-2008, 07:56 AM
Honestly, I'd never go to one. I don't believe in anything supernatural. That includes tarot readings. My opinion of tarot readers is that at best they're talented cold readers. Cold reading is a skill that doesn't take much refinement in my opinion. Anybody with two brain cells can learn to do it well. I feel that all tarot readers are charlatans, as are psychics, palm readers, and all the rest who claim to have supernatural abilities and take your money to give you to perform a parlor trick--that is, cold reading.

there is nothing supernatural about Tarot reading. or palm reading or psychic abilities -- they are all quite natural.

as to the degree of skill, talent and ability... you have all kinds at all levels. certain people will always see more than others for the simple reason that reality is multi layered to the infinite and perception is always skewed by personal limitations, knowledge and experience -- more or less the same way a story will be told a million different ways by a million different writers and will end up being a good read, poor or indifferent; hit the mark or miss it entirely... depending on the writer's tools: skill, insight and her way with words.

benbradley
06-11-2008, 08:39 AM
how's 'occult discipline' for ya? ;)
That's perfect, but I was kind of hoping you would defend the phrase 'occult science' so I could argue with you about it.;)

Angelinity
06-11-2008, 09:18 AM
That's perfect, but I was kind of hoping you would defend the phrase 'occult science' so I could argue with you about it.;)

you wish... :tongue

Mumut
06-11-2008, 10:14 AM
My teachers all said I'd never come to much good. I wonder of they ever set up as tarot card readers?

RoccoMom
06-11-2008, 01:56 PM
i had to learn to read tarot because it figures prominently in my novel, BOUND BY BLOOD. I've always found it fascinating, and a bit spooky.

I had a reading recently and it appears good news is on the way for me. I hope it's accurate.:D

HeronW
06-11-2008, 03:38 PM
Oh there's also: 'Tarot Junkies' rather sad people who need to get readings 2-3x a week because they want the responsibility of their life to be on the cards or the reader.

ideagirl
06-24-2008, 03:08 AM
I've gone to tarot readers and worked as a tarot reader myself. I've actually never come across a fake/fraud tarot reader--the only fakes I've come across have been palm readers, for whatever reason.

As for what people want in a tarot reader, I actually found that people who lack experience in that area--people who don't already have what you might call an abiding interest in and knowledge of the occult--anyway, such people actually do want the whole gypsy outfit and the woo-woo accessories. I set up at an art fair once, and I got almost no business the first day. The second day, I put on the headscarf, long gypsy-style dress, etc., and bingo, I had back-to-back clients all day. Weird.

Zoombie
06-24-2008, 04:32 AM
My aunt has some tarot cards that are based off the periodic table of elements. If you want a rrrreeeeally nerdy t.Reader, then you should have them use those cards.

Williebee
06-24-2008, 05:39 AM
Actually, I'm married to a reader. She reads stones, as well. She's really good. It's often very creepy.

If what she's getting is vague, she says so. If it is specific, she points that out too.


The cards, like the stones, are used as a focal point. A tool for focusing on the person being read.

benbradley
06-24-2008, 06:48 AM
My aunt has some tarot cards that are based off the periodic table of elements. If you want a rrrreeeeally nerdy t.Reader, then you should have them use those cards.
That seems SO incongruous (see my earlier posts), I might have to get a deck of those. It gives me the idea of a deck based on the 1401 instruction set, which is conveniently listed in Wikipedia.

Kalyke
06-24-2008, 07:19 AM
Ok- honestly- I want to g to one, but I don't think I ever would. I can't deny that I think they are all frauds, just actors in it for the money, telling you what they think you want to know- But still...- nope not going to one.

I read the tarot cards. It is what it seems to be. You shuffle them and there are strict meanings and spreads. I don't see how a person could perpetuate a fraud with them. --

And for the original poster. I had a reading given to me for a birthday present years before I learned how to read them myself.

I thought it was really weird, and I was shocked that the woman was accurate in some ways. She was nice and didn't do the Russian Gypsy bit. I think that you have to give some respect to the fact that this is a subculture, and it is really neat to get a glimpse into another person's belief system-- stones, runes, crystals and that whole spiritualist thing. One thing I did learn later is it is not up for interpretation. What the reader tries to do is to place it in the context of what is happening in your life at that moment. Too many people think it is mind reading, but it is just reading cards.

The person who got me that reading was very deep into spiritualism and she brought me to a really spooky camp in upstate New York where I lived then. It was a spiritualist gathering (this was also before I learned to read Tarot). It was the oldest spiritualist camp in North America, and had been visited by Mary Lincoln who believed that Abe Lincoln's ghost followed her around. We watched a medium channel and so forth. It was somewhat like theater-- but I am really open to the idea that this is the same sort of thing that happens all the time in churches. I mean, if you believe in the after life, can't ghosts exist and all that.

Oh, I have the standard Rider-Waite-Smith deck and a cool Peter Brughel set that I can't read-- too hard, but it is beautiful to look at.

blackrose602
06-25-2008, 04:50 AM
I read the tarot cards. It is what it seems to be. You shuffle them and there are strict meanings and spreads. I don't see how a person could perpetuate a fraud with them. --


Oh, I think it's easy to perpetuate a fraud with tarot cards. I don't read myself, on any sort of serious basis, but I'm a member of one of the tarot reader "families" in New Orleans. There are new readers popping up weekly in Jackson Square, most of whom are frauds. They take business from the serious readers, and give the whole thing a bad name.

It's generally untrained teenagers and young adults who have a passing familiarity with tarot but don't understand how to interpret the cards, nor do they care to learn. They just buy a setup and a deck, kick back and tell the tourists what they think they want to hear. Why they don't understand that they'd make more money if they just learned to read the cards, I will never understand. :Shrug:

Libbie
06-25-2008, 07:08 PM
there is nothing supernatural about Tarot reading. or palm reading or psychic abilities -- they are all quite natural.

as to the degree of skill, talent and ability... you have all kinds at all levels. certain people will always see more than others for the simple reason that reality is multi layered to the infinite and perception is always skewed by personal limitations, knowledge and experience -- more or less the same way a story will be told a million different ways by a million different writers and will end up being a good read, poor or indifferent; hit the mark or miss it entirely... depending on the writer's tools: skill, insight and her way with words.

I both agree and disagree. There is nothing supernatural about Tarot; you are right. There is nothing supernatural in this world, period. If it were supernatural--beyond nature--it could not exist. Those who perpetuate hoaxes such as Tarot upon others are cold-reading, which is indeed a natural talent, and a very easy one to develop at that. Some people don't even know they're doing it. They just know that they pick up on others' personalities with ease, and they may ascribe to that talent a supernatural origin because they haven't learned any better. That's how I learned what cold reading was as a teenager. I first thought I was actually psychic, but after a few minutes of open-minded research I came to understand that I just have a natural knack for reading people's personalities and putting on a good show.

I've never touched a Tarot deck in my life, but I have no doubt that I could sit down with any person who believes in the power of the Tarot and give them an extremely convincing reading. While I've never touched a deck and I know that there is no power at all in cards or palms or any other fortune-reading device, I am extremely good at cold reading. Palm reading? I could pull that off, too. I have made people believe I'm psychic before (something I now regret; that was cruel and irresponsible, although it was very entertaining for me.)

I don't want to start a fight with you or anybody else, so I'll leave it at this: The science of physics is the only idea on the nature of reality that has been tested and proven. Physics does not point to a reality that is "multi layered to the infinite," unless you get into quantum physics which even most quantum physicists don't fully understand. Metaphysics continues to fail to achieve theory status, and has done so for hundreds of years. Any person who wishes to write a convincing scene depicting an "average Joe" reacting to a Tarot reading should keep in mind what is truly reality and what is just something people say is reality without having any proof to back it up. How one's character reacts to a cold reading says a lot about the character, and can be a valuable tool for character development.


If any person wishes to gain more insight into the process of cold reading and its pervasive nature within the New Age/Metaphysics industry, you can read the book Why People Believe Weird Things by Michael Shermer. There is also lots of great information on it on James Randi's web site at http://randi.org.

Libbie
06-25-2008, 07:11 PM
Oh there's also: 'Tarot Junkies' rather sad people who need to get readings 2-3x a week because they want the responsibility of their life to be on the cards or the reader.

That is extremely sad and disturbing. Stuff like this is why I always speak up whenever any kind of supernatural topic is mentioned. There are people who are taken advantage of by cold readers. I'm fine with cold reading as a party trick or a little harmless entertainment, but I'm not fine with cold readers taking people's money again and again to give them false hope or false guidance. That, to me, is despicable and that's when you cross the line between harmless entertainer to charlatan.

johnnysannie
06-25-2008, 07:44 PM
There is nothing supernatural in this world, period.


].

I completely disagree but I'll leave it at that and not get into a long, drawn out, battle of wits.

ideagirl
06-30-2008, 01:40 AM
I've never touched a Tarot deck in my life, but I have no doubt that I could sit down with any person who believes in the power of the Tarot and give them an extremely convincing reading. While I've never touched a deck and I know that there is no power at all in cards or palms or any other fortune-reading device, I am extremely good at cold reading.

Assuming you're that good at cold reading, the only people you'd be able to trick that way are people who don't know much, or know nothing, about the tarot themselves. If you told me "this card tells me yada yada," randomly saying what you thought I wanted to hear and attributing it to a given card, I would say, "Wait, that's the Six of Wands" (or whatever), "so I'm not seeing where you're getting that from this card..." Because there are specific meanings. Ditto palmistry, obviously--if you pointed to my index finger and said it showed I would travel a lot, you would instantly reveal yourself to be a fraud, because that's not the part of the hand that shows travel.

On another note, I'm intrigued by the fact that you refer to your "natural knack at reading other people's personalities" as "cold reading" and a way of perpetrating fraud. If you're gifted at reading people's personalities, then what you're doing is not "cold reading" in the fraudulent/James Randi sense. It becomes fraudulent if you lie to the person--that is, if you make stuff up that they want to hear and tell them it's going to happen. But there's nothing fraudulent about it in the first place. If you're genuinely reading someone else's personality, I'm actually curious why you choose not to refer to that with a term such as "intuition," rather than with the judgmental and ethically loaded term "cold reading."


The science of physics is the only idea on the nature of reality that has been tested and proven. Physics does not point to a reality that is "multi layered to the infinite," unless you get into quantum physics which even most quantum physicists don't fully understand.

Um, but most (all) physicists acknowledge that quantum physics is real, and it does indeed point to a reality that is multilayered to the infinite. That's the reality metaphysicians are talking about, too. There's no incompatibility that I know of between real physics (i.e., the whole field, including the incredibly strange and anti-commonsensical field of quantum physics) and metaphysics. The only incompatibility is between everyday reality (which bears little to no resemblance to quantum physics) and metaphysics. I am of the school of thought that the word "supernatural" refers to real phenomena that we don't know how to measure yet, much as we didn't know about radio waves until Marconi. In other words, ESP, etc., do exist; we just haven't figured out how those phenomena work yet.

Skyraven
06-30-2008, 02:11 AM
And to get back to the original question - ie first opinion on tarot readings. My sister took me to a woman she paid to read her cards. I went along with it not believing. I went into a back room (more like a closet) in a botanica (store that sells candles, herbs, and anything else that might influence change in a person's life). The woman had a small table attached to the back wall of the closet and two chairs. She shuffled a set of cards, tapped the four corners of the top card and then gave me a q&a session. She asked me whether or not my son's dad was a Pisces or Leo, and the questions continued in the same way throughout the session. SHe didn't reveal anything shocking or out of the ordinary. Sort of like the Astrology charts in the newspaper. Vague enough that you can't tell each one can be applied to anyone and everyone. Needless to say, I wasted $35.

Stacia Kane
06-30-2008, 02:35 AM
I've read tarot professionally on and off for...thirteen years now. I've done it over the phone, I've done it over the internet, I've done it in person. At no time did I ever "tell people what they wanted to hear"--although I did soften bad news on occasion (not ignore, not hide, but emphasize that things always happen for a reason and life goes on).

A few times I read for people who'd never had a reading and were very frightened. A friend of mine was terrified she might get bad news, or that the reading would tell her she was a bad person(!) She had an idea that it would be like being mind-raped or something, that every nook and cranny of her psyche would be opened and peered into. So yeah, fear is a pretty legitimate reaction to a first reading, as is embarrassment. Not only do a lot of people feel they'll be looked down on or made fun of for getting a reading because so many people think it's crap, but they're embarrassed to be asking the questions they're asking. Some people are ashamed to admit they're worried about a romantic relationship, for example.

But there's also excitement. Reactions really vary depending on what kind of person they are and why they're there. If they're there for a general overview, or to see if a proposed move or change in their life will be good, they're excited and interested. If they're seeking reassurance that a bad situation will work out, they're usually more nervous.



Oh, and yes, the cards have very specific meanings. Those do vary depending on the individual reader--I've always had negative issues with The Empress, for example, although most readers see it as a very positive card, but I usually explain that my interpretation isn't necessarily standard--but in general, tarot does the work itself. There's interpretation and that's important, but the cards mean what they mean.

eveningstar
06-30-2008, 03:23 AM
Just wanted to add my voice to the chorus that tarot cards each have specific meanings and you can't just fake your way through a reading unless your client is rather clueless about the tarot. Each meaning has layers, but the 10 of Swords means something very different than the 2 of Cups.

The tarot is not a hoax. While some readers may indeed be frauds to lump them all as cold readers or pretenders is a gross generalization, and somewhat offensive considering how many people here, myself included, have mentioned that they read the tarot themselves.

Disa
06-30-2008, 03:33 AM
I'm glad to see there's still interest in the thread. It's very interesting to me to see the spectrum of opinions run the gamet from being scared of cards, thinking they are total crap, to belief. I'm not surprised.

I think we got off topic a couple of times, but it was interesting reading nonetheless.

Thank you all for your input. If there are others who still want to answer the questions originally posed, feel free to continue.

Thanks,

D

Gynn
06-30-2008, 07:39 AM
Hello,

I'm doing some research to help with a character's idea of what a tarot card reader might be. (A character who has never been to a reader)

So, if you are a person who has never been to a tarot card reader, I would love it if you would share what you think of them.

Would you consider going to one?

If so, what is it that you expect them to be able to do.

If not, why wouldn't you?

If you are a person who has been to tarot card readers, can you think back to before you went for your 1st reading and tell how it either met or didn't meet your expectations?


Thanks in advance.

My mother has done readings for years now as a full-time job (well, 3-4 a day, 4 or 5 days a week). I can tell you all about her, if you like =)

First, not all Tarot card readers are like Madame Jezebel, who wears a purple robe and lurks in a chamber lit by candles, burning incense and gazing into crystal balls. My mom uses the term "intuitive reader" or something like that.

Second, she actually completely believes that it's real and that she receives images of the future from her spirit guides. No, she isn't crazy, just overtly spiritual and openminded. I'm the complete opposite and won't let her do readings for me because I think it's a lot like horoscopes in that the answers she gets seem to be a bit on the vague side.

That being said, she accurately predicted that I would change jobs and told me when it would happen, even though I had not the slightest inclination to do so (the place I worked at was destroyed in a freak flood and I had to move on). She also said that I'd sell my first book at 34 (2 years from now), so cross your fingers :-o

My mother says that the readings she does are very personal and that she often feels drained after doing a few. Her clients are often in the midst of personal crises (I never ask for details and she wouldn't tell, anyway) and in tears.

The room she works in is well-lit, colorful and adorned with crystals (that have all sorts of powers, supposedly. I have three on my desk right now, lol) and other trinkets. She doesn't wear anything fancy, but I think she may play relaxing music occasionally.

So, I can't give you insight on the people that go to the readers, but I can tell you that my mother believes whole-heartedly (she isn't a scam artist) and is happy, and that's good enough for me, even if I don't believe any of it.

Menyanthana
06-30-2008, 12:10 PM
So, if you are a person who has never been to a tarot card reader, I would love it if you would share what you think of them.


As the first tarot card reader I saw was a gypsy in a PC game, I always imagined them to look like her. Big golden earrings and so on. ;)

However, although the things the gypsy in the PC game said were correct, I think, most tarot card readers just tell people what they want to hear. (Roughly based on the meaning of the cards, I think - to invent everything would be too risky)
The others just read the cards as they learnt to do it - if they can really foretell the future, I cannot judge. Never tried it. ;)

starrykitten
06-30-2008, 09:55 PM
My answer is pretty complicated, but I'll try to stay on topic. Yes, I've had many readings and can also read for others, which usually comes out well, but I decided to stop reading for myself for the most part.

To connect somewhat to the subject of writing about this, anything that furthers your plot or deepens your character would work in this situation. Obviously, you already realize that's important, but it seemed worth pointing out that this plot point should be faithful first to your story and second to other ideas about tarot and such.

When I got readings, it's generally been in the hopes, wan though they may be, that I'll get a really gifted reader who can tell me things that I need to know on some level--things about the future, or what's holding me back in the present, etc. I've actually had that happen a few times. When a reader who'd just met me opened the reading by saying I wasn't making enough time for my writing, I paid attention. ;) I'd have to say I've also done it as a way of getting a sense of closure about interpersonal experiences that I can't get closure on otherwise. Like when someone just disappears or a relationship takes a really sudden turn and communication shuts down, any explanation is better than none, and I can get that.

In the readings I've done for other people, I think those people were really, deep down, just looking for someone to talk to. The readings I gave were good, but I could always tell that the fact that I listened was what was most important. Some of them wanted to hear that their shitty boyfriend would suddenly stop being shitty and I think they hoped I'd tell them that. But this wasn't something I ever did for money. I would just often have my cards with me in coffeehouses and such and people would ask me to read for them.