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Tarot for change with Jessica Dore ✨
The cards aren't magic — the magic is you
An illuminating new episode is out now! ✨
Author Jessica Dore combines the wisdom of ancient storytelling, the mysticism of Tarot, and the teachings of psychology in her book, Tarot for Change: Using the Cards for Self-care, Acceptance, and Growth. A licensed social worker, she writes regular offerings to readers in her newsletter, using the images of the 78 cards of the Tarot deck and the characters she studies in folklore to weave intellectual yet emotionally affecting stories of how we can embrace the archetypes that are ever-present in our own lives — and use Tarot as a tool for change. I talk with Jessica about how she practices Tarot in her own life, how newcomers can build a relationship with the Tarot cards, and what the cards have to say about my life changes in 2022.
Readers of this newsletter likely know that Tarot has been a comforting self-care practice of mine since 2019. I was gifted my first deck (the vibrant, feminist Magic Mondays deck by Grace Duong) by a friend in my time of need. Since then, I’ve used tarot pulls at new and full moons as a tool to journal and find deeper self-connection.
After reading Jessica Dore’s Tarot Offerings for years, I was so excited to welcome her as a podcast guest. She approaches Tarot differently than anyone else I’ve come across; her book reflects on each of the 78 cards in the Tarot deck in tandem with psychological practices that are proven to effect healing and change —such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) — as well as the wisdom of generations of folktales and characters many of us know well.
People often mistake the purpose of Tarot as something used to “tell your future.” For Jessica, and myself, being in relationship with the cards provide a powerful lens for you to reflect on the people (seen as archetypal characters with unique traits in Tarot) in your life, yourself, and the stage of life you find yourself in — as well as where you want to go and who you want to be.
For those interested in starting their own Tarot practice, here’s a peek into what mine looks like. I did this Tarot pull in July as a way to look back on the first six months of 2022 and ground into my hopes for the next half of the year. (You can hear Jessica and I discuss this pull in more detail around minute 33.) Here are the questions I asked the cards, and what I pulled:
Guide: 9 of Pentacles
Me: 2 of Swords
Last six months’ theme: 10 of Swords
What have I achieved this year? 5 of Swords
How have I held myself back this year? Ace of Cups
What does full expansion look like for me? 6 of Wands
What do I need to release? Knight of Pentacles
Next six months’ theme: Justice
Secret hope: Queen of Pentacles
My main takeaway from the cards was to spend the next chapter of my life basking in the changes I had made (especially celebrating my sobriety for almost six months) rather than continuing to push myself to constantly be better. And I did take time to rest, relax, and enjoy the moment for exactly what it was when I traveled Europe in August.
The secret hope I shared is to be at peace with my connection to my own creativity. I’m still working on it. But I’m also getting better at embracing my role in this world as an artist, and finding joy in the creating I’m doing now — rather than always feeling I have to earn credibility as a “real artist.”
Remember: the cards aren’t magic — the magic is you. The next full moon is coming up on December 7, if you’d like to try out a Tarot pull of your own.
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