Embracing the Infinite

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by Frances

There was a recent thread, on a forum, about reading with the Thoth Tarot that got me thinking. The person who posted asked how people negotiate through all the symbols, dignities, kabalistic paths, numerological and astrological correspondences etc. etc. etc to read the Thoth "properly." She asked that only those who actively use these elements and combinations thereof post and not those who read the deck intuitively. I didn't post because while I may know the meanings of the symbols et al., I have always read the Thoth intuitively. I don't understand the prevailing view of trying to turn the infinite into something finite. Why not leave it be and embrace it?

The Thoth is a technical deck with many layers of symbolism. Each color, element, object etc was chosen for a reason. Crowley was very precise and meticulous and he directed every brush stroke of Harris'. But he did it all with a whole picture in mind, with a feeling and with intent. Some cards were redrawn many times before Crowley was satisfied. The cards are tremendously evocative and magickal. I fell in love with the deck at first sight. I opened the box, shuffled and BAM! They set my intuition on fire! The cards were created in such a way that you could look at the same card a hundred times and get an endless number of interpretations. I understand the impulse to dissect and digest each piece but not at the expense of losing your sight or losing sight of the whole picture. The images are quite powerful but not when taken apart. It's like looking at a painting that was creating using pointillism. If you constantly focus on the tiny dots you miss seeing the whole picture.  

The person who posted on the forum is a friend of mine, I told her that I didn't post because she didn't want anyone who reads the Thoth intuitively to respond. She laughed and said but you are psychic, we mere mortals need to rely on the symbols and decans etc. I can't disagree more. I believe anyone can read intuitively and anyone can train their psychic sense. The key is focus. If you focus on the minutia you won't be able to see the patterns that emerge in each throw or the change in colors, or the similarity or contrast in the cards, or elements. You won't be able to read the signs and you will never be able to connect the dots. You need to be open and willing to see, feel, hear, smell, taste and sense the message to find reason in the chaos. You can not choose to control the unknown you must surrender to it thereby embracing it. 

So what is a person who is new to Tarot and Divination or the Thoth to do? Dive in, You'll learn how to swim. Understand that intuition trumps meanings. The best readings I have ever had are with people who trust the divine and listen to their soul. When I teach Tarot or Sortilege, I want people to begin reading immediately, to look at a few cards or cast thrown and feel their way through their first readings, to trust their instincts. This is the most powerful way to learn in my opinion, by doing.  I want them to tap into their subconscious and learn to trust it. They are raw and natural at that stage. They are feeling around in the dark with just their intuition to guide them. PERFECT!

Learning to trust is not easy. The only way I know to do it is to meditate and practice. When you are reading, sit with your cards or throw, silence your self consciousness and allow your soul to speak uncensored. When I was learning how to do this I made sure I would use unfamiliar cards. I especially loved diving into oracles or obscure methods of divination to throw me out of my comfort zone. I got into Sortilege - casting lots - around this time and it really helped me open my psychic pathways and develop trust. With Sortilege you are forced to do this from the beginning. There isn't a set meaning of a cast of sticks, stones or junk. You cup, cast and concentrate and are left to your own insight! Cards are at once different and the same! Learn the meanings and symbols but never lose sight of the whole. 

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