Paying Attention

I’ve been reading the cards for more and more folks lately and every session has been its own kind of wild, weird and wonderful. Tarot has been a near-daily study and meditation for me for over three years now and while my understanding of it is always evolving, here’s what I currently know: I am not a fortune-teller. And while I do think we’re all “psychic” in our own ways, I’m not a huge fan of that word either. It just feels exclusionary and ego-based.

For me, tarot is a ritualized, hyper-intentional form of paying attention. That’s not to say it isn’t magic, it is, but it’s everyday magic that shows itself when we simply stop everything and become aware of what is all around and within us, waiting to be named.

Tarot is when you’re walking down a busy street and hear the faint call of birdsong and you make the decision to hone in, to listen closer, and are rewarded little by little with more music, all manner of tweets and chatter and coos and buzz, a symphony of birds that had always been there, just below the din of life, waiting to be heard.

Tarot is when you’re stuck on a problem for weeks, finally giving up, only to be struck by the solution moments later in the shower. 

Tarot is when a sentence in the novel you’re reading takes your breath away because those nineteen words just told the story of your life.

Tarot is feeling seen and feeling heard.

Tarot is a random memory of someone you hadn’t thought of in years, a memory that floods your senses and challenges that story you’ve been telling yourself.

Tarot is realizing which stage of the hero’s journey you’re currently living.

Tarot is the goosebumps.

Tarot is noticing the ants crawling across your table and deciding that today you will follow their little pioneer trail as it snakes down and across the pavement and out into the meadow and up and around each blade of grass until it arrives at the big oak tree and then continues still, upwards, tracing the craggy bark maze higher and higher where the limbs grow smaller and the bark-road smoother and you lose them up there, somewhere, in the sun and sky.

*Photos of the Pagan Otherworlds Tarot by Uusi

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