Daily, gritty, spiritual inspiration from bestselling 'high heeled guide' author, Alice Grist.
Today let's start with The Death Card. Cue dark and forboding music playing in your head...
The reason I choose Death to start with is because it is the card that frightens most people off from ever getting involved in the tarot.
So I will start by saying this. Tarot reflect life. They do not cause it. You cause it. You make choices. You have free will. You and all of us have little deaths happening every day. From the last time you had a full on hair cut, to the time your beloved Grandma died. It is all a spectrum of death that is real, that happens each moment, and that can be powerful when we align with it.
I've been reading cards for 28 years. Never once has the Death card predicted an actual death. I am aware of one instance where it is claimed that a woman pulled the death card, and then, a whole year later, she died. This came to me through third party hearsay. And I call a little bit of bullshit on it. Not because it isn't true. Like I said, the cards reflect life, and death is a part of life. But it is bullshit because it is scaremongering. It doesn't show the truth and it doesn't give hope. And Tarot, in my world, always give hope.
Let me say it again. The cards do not make events happen. No slip of paper, no piece of card, no divine ass playing card pack ever made a person die. However. People do die. Get your head around that. It's something we don't often let ourselves think on. So when Death peeks out in a tarot reading we get all angsty and freak. But that's because we are thinking the worst... When in fact, Death, in all it's kaleidescopic meaning, can be a rather wonderful thing.
The Death card, is shot through with amazing and positive vibes. Should we choose to engage with them.
On a very simple level. Death is an ending. It is the rotten parts of life dropping away. It is leaving shitty situations. It is jacking in that job you hate. It is closing the door upon one verison of you and opening to a better, happier version of you.
Death is, nothing to be scared of. Honest it's not.
Here are some more reasons why.
Death is a gift. Check the card out properly. It's not just a skeleton dude wielding a scythe. There is so much more. There is light and dark. There are jewels and blessings and gifts.
Now think on your last big death. Your last big ending. What did it bring? When that job / relationship / friendship ended. Yes it may have been hellish. But what beauty and understanding did it bring to your door? If it hadn't ended, where would you be now? Rotting and groaning under the weight of something that needed to pass you by I imagine!
Death will bring you to your knees. But it has its purpose, its victories. It is a metaphor for every ending you have ever experienced. and yes, occassionally it means that an actual death has occurred. And that too, is a gift. Because within the death of those we know and love, we might find wisdom, truth and become closer to our humanity. The cards didn't cause it, life in its effervescent perverseness did.
Here is one of the biggest lessons of the tarot. We are mortal. We are divinity sitting within human flesh. We can end, much like the mini events of our lives. But with Tarot in our hand we sit closer to spirit. When we convene with the divine, then we know that perhaps death, actual physical death, is just another transition, like all the others.
So that is why I am warm to the death card. Not because it predicts finality and the END. But because it proposes a life beyond each and every death. Be that a life beyond your current circumstance or a life beyond your current skin. When you open to a Dirty & Divine understanding of life, of spirit, of tarot, the death card becomes a beautiful promise rather than a threat...
Dirty & Divine is the new book by Alice B Grist and is published in March 2017 by Womancraft Publishing.
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