Since I've listed tarot readings as an item in the Swag Fundraiser, it made sense to throw together a quick exploration of Tarot & Oracle cards as a base resource. Down the line I'll do a more thorough exploration into card meanings and things like that, for now I only want to spend a bit of time touching on the basics. This will include the decks I like to use, why I love them and where you can find them, as well as a blurb about various crystals I like to pair up with my readings, and the way I like to go about doing little daily/weekly focus readings for myself. I'll also put a general guide at the bottom for how I go about reading others.
I hope some of you can some use out of this little guide, as this is easily one of my favorite topics!
There are many ways to choose tarot and oracle decks, but it's best to find decks that really speak to you. The decks I love are exactly like this. Because I tend to be a more aesthetic person, and quickly interpret cards on intuition, it's always been important to me to find decks with artwork that really draws me in. Below, I'm going to show you my favorites with a quick glance at the appearance of the cards, the name of the deck/links to where you can find them online (if available), and a little description of why they're useful and for what purposes!
My undisputed favorite set, I use this guy for everything now. Conveniently inexpensive, this deck features a cosmic twist on the typical Angel Oracle Cards. For the most part, I find it impossible to connect to Angel Oracle Cards because the artwork tends to be a bit too cheesy for me. This deck on the other hand called to me immediately, for likely obvious reasons. Great for the highly intuitive, however, this deck also comes with a great accompany guide for anyone new to oracle cards. It doesn't have particularly good spread conceptions beyond 'you can do this, or you can do that', so you sort of need to know how to form those on your own. Beyond that, this is a fantastic deck of 44 cards, same as all traditional oracle sets.
As the name implies, this deck is meant to receive it's messages from the Archangels, and features mantra chants for each separate card which can be helpful in meditation.
This is an insanely pretty deck with the easy to read messages of usual oracle cards. The only downside I find to to this deck would be the breakdown of the cards and guides. I don't tend to use guides, so it's not a huge problem for me, but this deck has 5 different types of cards inside of it: Confirmation Cards, Inquiry Cards, Action Cards, Activation Cards, and Transmission cards. While this would normally be fine, there isn't any actual distinction of these on the cards themselves, so if you intend to try to split them up, it would be a bit difficult. The upside is that it gives awesome spread examples, and a great deal of information to go along with it.
This deck focuses on your own inner connection to the universe, rather than a deck that calls for information from external sources, and is specifically designed to make you and your own intuition the oracle, which I find incredibly refreshing. It's great for connecting with your higher self. They're slightly more expensive than the Angel Oracle deck, but still incredibly affordable.
This was my very first Tarot Deck, and I still absolutely love it. Featuring gorgeous nature oriented artwork, this deck is a classic Tarot deck that includes both the Major and Minor Arcana, making it completely functional. The given meanings of the cards are slightly different from those typically given for the Rider-Waite Tarot decks, though these can still be used, as can personal intuition.
While these are more expensive than the other decks, they come with an AMAZING full size guide book that includes multiple spread orientations, as well as card breakdowns that go so far as to explain the artwork's purpose, the meaning of the cards, reading points, and even how they can apply to people, questions or events. The only real downside to this deck is that it doesn't give any reversal meanings, so you'll need to get a general idea for those from external sources if you wish to use them.
This deck pulls it's meaning from nature itself, versus self or angels.
I connected with this deck very quickly, and was additionally hit with some kizmet the week after purchasing it while in an antique shop in Maryland on vacation with my family when I found a box the seemed meant for it.
The easiest of my decks to use by a huge margin, this one was a Christmas Gift from Takoda Vega last year. It has a twist on the average tarot deck, in that it blends tarot and oracle concepts into one deck, featuring 22 cards of the Major Arcana, 22 "Insight" cards, and 22 Spread cards.
What makes this deck the most user friendly is it's spread cards, which remove the need to know spreads completely. The guidebook for this deck actually includes reversal meanings for the major arcana itself, though using reversals on the insight cards is ultimately unnecessary, so you have to be a bit clever. Additionally, this deck works numerology and horoscopes straight into it's cards, which is another cool feature, as well as brief meanings on the cards themselves that make them easy to use without the guidebook for first timers.
Not surprisingly by looking at the gorgeous hubble images used on the cards, this deck draws it's inspiration from the universal consciousness as a whole. It's great for both quick conversational type readings, as well as incredibly thorough and in depth explorations of issues and people.
As far as oracle decks go, this one is incredibly user friendly, featuring fairly detailed explanations right on the cards that make the accompany guide simply an add on. I found this deck at a psychic convention at A.R.E. while at the beach with Sorwyn. For whatever reason, I knew exactly what I wanted right from the get go, just not which deck would fill the need best, so she got the joy of watching me wander around for the better part of an hour trying to decide between alternate decks before this one called out to me from across the shop.
It features simple but beautiful artwork, drawing it's inspiration from... you guessed it, the animal kingdom. Oddly, there is a Unicorn card, the only mythical animal in the entire deck, though it's paired with a very fitting meaning.
The guide book for this one aims more for intuition, so you're not going to find any spread ideas... but you will find a few pages on preparing the cards and how to work your energy into them, which is certainly helpful, as well as how to connect to a spirit animal. Each card's description also comes with a list of associations for a quick idea of the types of themes it covers.
Given my obvious obsession with crystals, it seems wrong to not give them a tiny little place here in this exploration. I have a lot of crystals that I use specifically with certain decks, others that I like to keep around after readings in alignment with the cards that appear and in meditation based on readings. I'll give you a look into how I like to do readings next, but first, just some really quick ideas of how some crystals can pair with various themes. Keep in mind that crystals are almost always multipurpose, so they can definitely pair with a BUNCH of cards and decks, but for right now... I'm going to focus on certain one's I've come to love based on personal experience, and stick to my Angel deck, since it's my primary go to with easy to read themes to give a jist.
Selenite & Black Tourmaline
These two stones are ones I keep close anytime I'm working with tarot or pendulums thanks to their protective properties.
Black Tourmaline repels and blocks negative psychic energies, while absorbing negative energy from your surroundings, making it a perfect protection during readings.
Selenite, also called 'Liquid Light', is also great for clearing negativity, but more over is able to clear and charge both people, spaces, and other stones. Using these two stones in tandem is much like a closed circuit of protection.
Additionally, Selenite is WONDERFUL in use with Angel input, given it's connection to their frequency and realm.
Fluorite & Tree Agate
These two stones are some of my favorite when it comes to grounding and connection to the Earth.
Above all things, these stones help to calm the mind, clear confusion, and center oneself, making them some of the best for meditation and focus as well as emotional balance.
Along the same line, Narmada Lingam stones are some of the best for balance. These stones are only harvested once a year, from the Narmada River in India. They were formed thanks to some help from a meteorite millions of years ago, making them known for being a stone that balances the energy of the universe with the energy of earth.
Since they represent central balance, and are a combination of both male and female energies, they're perfect for bringing emotional and mental balance in meditation.
I procured the stone entirely by accident, after a day of pulling only Archangel Hanael cards. While I'd ordered an Angelite stone, this came instead. It fit so perfectly with her reputation for bringing harmony and balance, as well as inner strength that it seemed a sign. Since then, I've associated it with her, despite it's main association with the God Shiva.
Howlite & Tiger's Eye
Two of my favorite stones, Howlite and Tiger's eye are both great for working with the third eye, promoting mental clarity, and strengthening intention.
While both are fantastic for other purposes, I find their ability to remove anger and balance emotions work very well with these cards and topics.
As far as intention goes, Howlite can also help with focus and
struggles with procrastination and flightiness, which does a lot when it comes to meditation.
Fluorite, Sunstone, Citrine, Peacock Ore
There are a lot of awesome crystals that can fit this bill, but anytime a reading calls for happiness and compassion, I turn to the bright and sunny crystals.
Sunstone and Citrine in particular work well, especially with Jophiel and Sandalphon. You may have noticed that this deck features orbs of light for each angel.. it's no coincidence that these two Archangels manifest in sunlit colors.
Beyond the yellow stones, Fluorite and Peacock Ore are also magnificent. Peacock Ore itself is known as a stone of happiness, and is even known to help channel happiness into others. Meanwhile, Fluorite's emotional healing properties are cleansing and uplifting, and pairs well with other happiness stones to create positive vibrations.
Chrysocolla, Amazonite, Lapis Lazuli, Citrine
Anytime you're working with communication in any of its forms, whether it be personal interactions, keeping oneself honest, understanding others or public speaking, these stones are god sends.
Each works in its own way, but all of them will help. Either directly in communication, or often time in gaining wisdom/insight, or simply seeing the truth in oneself, these are crucial helpers in the arsenal.
Angelite, Blue Chalcedony, Lapis Lazuli, Peacock Ore, Clear Quartz
When it comes to building trust in yourself, others, or the universe as a whole, blue stones are where it's at.
All of these stones have alternate uses, but they all promote the knowledge that you can believe in yourself and the universe's ability to take care of you.
Clear Quartz as an addition works to amplify the other stones, all the while helping to clear chakras and open you up to your higher consciousness and guides. Blending these, especially in meditation, is a lot like having the universe tuck you in under a nice warm blanket.
Ammonite, Amethyst, Labradorite, Bismuth
For most, when you think tarot, you think psychic. While this really depends on the way you view tarot, if you ARE looking for some super charged psychic stones, these are some of the best, and most well known.
Anytime a reading starts begging for universal connection, or attention to the higher self, these are where I go. While Labradorite and Amethyst help increase specifically psychic abilities, Bismuth will help you along your spiritual journeys.
As a personal favorite, Ammolite is like a cosmic connection steroid. A thin, layered crystal that forms on ammonite fossils, it works especially well with anything involving the Archangel Metatron in my experience.
Angelite, Merlinite, Charoite, Mariposite, Celestobarite
Most of my spiritual work is almost exclusively with the Archangel Raziel, so these tend to be my absolute favorites. Raziel is also known as the Wizard Angel, and has a close affinity with Alchemy. To this effect, Merlinite is a wonderful addition when any of his cards pop up in a reading, as it is the stone of the Alchemists. It should come as no surprise that Angelite is an amazing crystal to pair with Angel work, but as Raziel is also known to work through dreamspaces, I find Mariposite and Celestobarite to be incredibly helpful. Mariposite is often called 'The Stone of the Night', and helps to bring on more vivid dreams.
If you're a lucid dreamer like me, or simply wishing to kickstart your dreaming abilities, Mariposite can help you. I always pair this stone with Celestobarite and often Clear Quartz as an amplifier. Celestobarite works closely with memory, and I find when used in conjunction with Mariposite, makes it much easier to remember dreams for longer upon waking.
Another useful stone when working with spirit and change is Charoite, especially known for its ability to help transmute negativity into positivity, overcome fear and gain confidence. This stone is called "The Stone of Transformation", and it does just that, all while tying into the spirituality and magic of the other stones above. Using this stone to the effect of dreaming makes it easier to access information in the dream state. If you're a lucid dreamer, it will strengthen your ability to control where you go within the dreams. If not, it will simply help bring the knowledge you need into your dreams. Even when you can't remember your dreams, your subconscious takes this information in stride, making use of it during the day where neccessary.
Tarot reading is a highly intuitive art, but the great thing is... there are literally a billion ways one can go about doing it. What really matters is working directly with your energy, and in this respect, I find that creating your own ritual is important. I don't believe in the whole "You have to do it like this or you're wrong" mentality, as I find that incredibly counterproductive, and honestly.. a bit arrogant. We all receive insight in our own ways, and just as no two people are the same, neither are tarot rituals.
Don't get me wrong, there are a set of 'instructions' that are pretty mainstream, and I definitely have a lot of those incorporated into the way I do things, but I don't think anyone should feel limited by these. Do what feels right, because in the end, it's your confidence in yourself and intuition that make this process work for you.
To try to illustrate what I mean, I'm gonna share a breakdown of the type of process I personally like to use for personal readings. I use a few different formats depending on time restraints and which decks I'm using, since each has a different strength. The Oracle decks tend to work really well if you just want a quick guide for a day, where as the tarot decks are better for delving into problems and questions.
Personally, my focus tends to be working with the Archangels and angel oracle cards, and so I have a more consistent 'ritual' for reading with these. The frequency I do these varies from daily to weekly, or just whenever I get the compulsion, so I tend to give it a bit more attention than quick reading with other decks. Ritual differences carry over into spread differences, as you can use classic spreads, or create your own... it's all about intention. Whatever you focus on, if you pile your intention into it, that's what you'll get.
Doing just that, I don't use typical spreads when I do these personal oracle readings. I'm rarely looking for an answer to a question, but rather allowing them to guide me. I prefer to use these readings to give me a look into what I should pay attention to and work on that day, or until the next reading, etc. Often times, I find that when I don't follow through with the suggestions I'm given, they'll simply pop right back up the next time I do a reading. When things seem indecisive or slightly muddied, I tend to break open one of my other oracle decks for some context, as you'll see below. Especially with the 'Work Your Light' deck, if I'm overdoing my readings or not paying attention to what was already suggested, this context card will straight up call me out.
All of that said, let me show my favorite way to do one of these for myself! This is an actual reading from this morning, with images for every step of the way, using 3 Archangel cards for guidance, and one Oracle card for further context.
There are a literal ton of ways to shuffle tarot and oracle cards, and a mess of controversy amongst the most serious tarot readers as to what is and is not acceptable. I don't prescribe to any of that nonsense. Whatever feels right for you, go for it. Just make sure you're using your intention as you do so. These methods range from card player shuffling (which a lot of people will cringe at), to scattering and scrambling them all over a table. It's a seriously wide berth.
For me, I do what agrees with my OCD, and keeps my cards as pristine as possible. When you get a new deck, it can be useful to do some light bending to unstick them some, but as your energy works its way into them, they'll begin to flow more naturally on their own.
I shuffle in stacks for ultimate mix up, dividing my deck first into groups of 4 (a lot like you would deal a game of solitaire, one per pile until they're gone), followed by 3, and then 2. After that, just some simple and light shuffling in my hand and we're good to go.
Once things are all shuffled out, I generally always use the fan method for laying out this deck, where as you'll see, I generally use a hand shuffling method for choosing cards from my other oracle decks.
Just like the shuffle, there's a great deal of superstition over which hand you should draw cards with. While my tendencies happen to fall in line with a lot of these, it's mostly a comfort choice on my part. When working with this deck, I like to keep some clear quartz and angelite in my right hand, but this is simply because I find it easier to navigate my energy with my left hand. When using the fan method, all you need to do is glide your hand in a hover above the line, using your heart and intuition to lead you to the cards. For me, I find there's a subtle change when I hit the right spot. I draw out whichever card my middle finger settles on when I drop my hand. As I mentioned before, I like to select these in groups of 3 for this type of reading.
Once I've got what I need, I restack the rest of the deck, and flip the three that were chosen. Already, you can likely see a pretty clear message starting to pop through, but this is where I find the context card can come in handy to either enforce the intuitive hit, or clarify confusion.
The Context Card
Like I mentioned earlier, I use the simpler method for selecting my context card. Simply holding the deck in my left hand, I use my right to shuffle them until a card pops out. If something falls out, it usually means an especially strong meaning. If it takes forever for one to pop up, it can mean the opposite (though it doesn't necessarily). This round only took a few shuffles.
Breaking Down the Meaning
Now I have a full reading for where my thoughts and focus should rest, and can go ahead and decipher what I'm looking at. It's important to remember when working with this deck and Archangels that you're only receiving suggestions. It's never a "You have to do this this way" type of deal, as we are expected to decide for ourselves what to follow through on.
The reading I've ended up with today is very consistent with what I've been getting a lot lately, which generally tells me that I haven't quite followed through on the advice. Especially when these revolve around balance, it's usually just an indicator that I haven't reached equilibrium yet. But anyhoo, onto the cards!
As I said earlier, most of my work tends to be with Raziel, so his appearance in this reading isn't the slightest bit surprising. I'll post a bit about how I ended up with this guide in a bit about synchronicity on a different page, but because of that, I can almost expect to draw one of Raziel's cards, as they pop up in about 90% of my personal readings. Because these are typically root cards for me, they tend to be what I use as a base for other cards in a reading.
When the Retreat card appears, it's almost always a sign that I'm pushing something too hard, putting too much focus on something, and am just generally too emersed in some situation. Sometimes this applies to the way I art binge, other times that I'm trying to force my meditation practices, and still others as a call to back off of my personal readings for a time. A lot of times, if the same messages continually pop up, I'll start getting cards and synchronicity messages that state a very direct need for me to stop relying on readings and instead follow my intuition, letting my higher self guide me, as I already know what I need. In either situation, This card suggests that I step back and stop focusing on some tiny aspect of what's going on to get some perspective and refresh. Look at the bigger picture, so to speak.
Raphael's Earth Force card has also become a staple in my readings. Depending on what it shows up with, it can be interpreted in different ways. Sometimes this is talking directly about nature. When paired with Raziel's retreat card, it tells me that I need to ground myself before I inevitably spiral out, leaving myself vulnerable to a mess of bad energy. In this case, it doesn't necessarily mean that I need to go spend all of my time outdoors, but the need to remember to live inside the body, and not just the mind. Grounding yourself to the earth itself pulls us out of our own head's, making us conscious of the present moment and the sensations around us, rather than focusing on stress and anxiety. It creates an emotional balance that curbs a ton of physical symptoms that negativity brings about, and has an incredibly calming effect, making it easier to let go of the things that are causing us pain.
Jophiel's Liberation card furthers this message, pushing me to understand that I need to do some serious meditation to recenter myself. Working with this Archangel helps to push through whatever issue Raziel's card is trying to bring my attention to with the knowledge that all it takes is strong intention to be successful. These three cards are telling me that I need to remove whatever stressful emotions I've attached to the situation I've immersed myself too far in by returning to a calm center. At the same time, it lets me know that once I do, I'll have no problem easily accomplishing what I'm attempting, which will in turn allow me to continue with a clear mind, unhindered by any negativity that may be weighing me down. You'll notice that there is some bird imagery on this card, which very much symbolizes the freedom that comes along with this variety of calm.
The context card in this instance is a strong confirmation of the other three cards, while also giving extra meaning to Raphael's card. The need for grounding is very obviously stressed, but also gives me a more specific description of what will help me to reach this balance. When a context card or angel card specifically mentions empaths and highly sensitives, it tells me to focus on the emotional baggage specifically.
Empaths and acutely sensitive people are constantly fighting a battle of balance and boundaries, as the emotions of those around us can both help and hurt. Sure, when everyone around you is happy and positive, it's an exponential pump of joy into our systems. On the contrary, when surrounded by miserable and negative people, the attempts to connect often end up dragging down our vibration, with the negativity sticking to our aura like balloons attaching to static electricity. With the universe constantly seeking out equilibrium, (First law of thermodynamics), it's inevitable that this will have an effect on an empath. Without constantly purging this and returning our vibrations to their heightened state, we'll soon find ourselves suffocating on the negativity.
I like to consider the suggestion to connect with nature in this situation much like a fire in a small room. Eventually, the room will fill with smoke, and the fire will eventually die when it runs out of oxygen. This is what negative energy does to the aura of an empath. On the opposite hand, a fire burning outside will only grow and thrive, because it has ample stores of oxygen, and an endless expanse to release the smoke into. In the same way that nature creates this clear and vibrant environment for a fire, so it does for empaths and highly sensitives. When you're constantly forced to put up strong boundaries to protect yourself from the nagging negativity, or that which has already invaded your space, simply walking outside gives you the opportunity to drop them. It's easier to simply release the baggage, and allow yourself some time without the emotional walls, letting the earth and air take over for a while. For this reason, almost every empath feels more safe and secure when they're outside in the open air. This can also tie back into Jophiel's Liberation card, talking about the emotional freedom that can come from releasing the negative build up.
All in all, this reading suggests that I step back, and stop focusing on emotional weight. Both my own, and that of others. Especially, it lets me know that a new perspective and a clear mind and aura will help me to see that most of this is unnecessary strain that I've put on myself, and that if I release the hold I've let it put on my mind, the freedom that follows will allow me to accomplish my goals with ease. Given the recent string of bad luck I've been having, and the amount of frustration, anger and guilt I've let settle on me, it's easy to understand what is being suggested. This is letting me know that I'm manifesting more negativity into my life by focusing solely on the bad things going on, and that all I need to do is let go.
Now that I've got the offer of Tarot readings for others listed as part of the Swag Fundraiser, I want to do a little blurb on how I go about doing that! There are a few incredibly important things to understand in these situations in order to get the most out of a tarot reading.
For starters, I'm an intuitive, and I am exceptionally good at reading vibrations and energies. I have always had a close connection with the universe and its suggestions on top of this, but have recently become aware that what I originally thought was a connection with a universal spirit guide has actually been an affinity with certain Archangels, so I do get a bit of input on this level... but I'm not psychic. There are hugggge differences between these two things, and getting them confused will only lead to frustration and disappointment. In this same vein, it's important to understand that everyone has free will and the opportunity to make their own decisions. Even when readings from psychics, people expect them to tell them the future, get a great reading, and then make different decisions or don't follow the advice, which is naturally going to lead to a different outcome. Especially the way that I read, this is a big factor.
Back to how I personally do things! If you want a good reading, it's important to have an open mind, and a clear intention/focus. Skepticism rides your vibration, and muddies attempts to do a good tarot reading. It's a lot like trying to read your energy behind a brick wall. It simply doesn't work. Be open to the process, and things will go great. Also, be prepared for advice you may not particularly like, as this happens from time to time. I'm not going to try to avoid what the reading is telling me for the sake of protecting feelings, as that doesn't help you! I'm simply going to tell you what I'm being given. Strong intention is also very important in these readings for the sake of focusing both your energies, as well as my ability to tune into the vein you're looking to explore. Without this, while I can read your general vibration, I can't connect and contextualize it into a reading because I have nothing to connect specifically to.
For instance, say my doppleganger comes to me asking for a reading, without any clear intention for why they want one. (I'm using my doppelganger in the format of, someone exactly like me in every way for the sake of example.) In this situation, I would be able to read their current energy at face value, keeping in mind that people's vibrations are constantly changing based on what's going on in their personal life at any given time... I'd be able to get a general jist of where they're at and how they're feeling in that instant, but lacking a focus or intention that I can tap into, all a reading would do is reiterate that vibration. Tarots beauty is that it gives advice for how to tackle situations, giving new perspectives that would promote well being and progress. Now, if said doppleganger came in with something like "I'm trying to progress on my spiritual path and could use some guidance", "I'm feeling a lot of confusion about how to deal with this work issue or an instable relationship", or even something I tend to go with is along the line of "I'm feeling detached from my purpose and how I should proceed to become stable and content with my life and situation"... then there is a direct intention to apply to the frequencies I'm picking up on, I can connect to WHAT you need, and focus that directly into the cards. When you do this, the cards aren't forced to guess what you're trying to work on, and can give more clear and concise advice that can help you on your path.
As I mentioned here and there on this page, these days I also work very closely with Angelic energies. Each Archangel has a different specialty when it comes to offering aid. They're always willing to help anyone who asks, but on any given day, a different Archangel may be of use to you. When pulling Angelic oracle cards, having context for what you're trying to work on allows them to align you with an Angel that can be of the most service in that particular goal. For instance, if your focus is on spiritual growth, or trying to make sense of reality... Archangel Metatron, or Archangel Raziel would be particularly helpful. If you're say, a writer or an artist going through some sort of block, Archangel Gabriel is going to be more helpful. Maybe you're having confidence issues... then Archangel Hanael would be a great guide. Without that clear intention, it's a lot like walking into a department store and telling the person at the front "I need something". Okay, well what are you looking for so we can send you to the right department, where the proper customer service staff member with the proper knowledge can help you locate said thing? I find that they're incredibly good at pointing you to the proper help, but you have to give some sort of indication. For me, my passion has always been on understanding the universe, the nature of consciousness, and exploring alternate realms like dreams and the akashic records for guidance on my purpose... so as I mentioned, almost every reading and every sign that comes to me channels through Archangel Raziel. It's all about what you hope to achieve.
To this end, if you want a reading, I'll come and chat with you a bit about what your intention is, give myself a few minutes to get a grip on your vibration and energy so that I can connect, and we'll be off to the races!
For now I'm focusing on smaller readings like the one I've shown above as a personal reading, but if anyone is really hankering for some more detailed spiritual work, keep a line open with me and if I have time, I'll see what I can do to help you out further. Simply keep in mind that more detailed readings require more time than the smaller one's, as there is more to dig through and translate, so if I do decide to do any of these, they're probably going to need to cost a bit more to make up for the time.