How I came to tarot
Having experienced repeated traumas in childhood, I entered adulthood with many unhealthy coping mechanisms and ways of perceiving the world. I have worked very hard to rewire my brain and teach myself how to be a healthy person through professional care and the support of those who love me.
However, I’d been missing something spiritually, and so I was drawn to tarot as a tool to connect to both my own subconscious and the universe.
How I practice tarot
I see and use tarot as a tool for introspection, empowerment, and healing. Benebell Wen, in her book Holistic Tarot: An Integrative Approach to Using Tarot for Personal Growth, describes her approach to tarot as “tarot analytics.” She says:
“Tarot analytics is about using tarot to empower […] Skeptics will say that there is no objective truth to the tarot, only the subjective. We project our personal stories into the card meanings and make that our truth. That is exactly right. And that is exactly how it helps people gain insight into situations that otherwise seemed hopeless – because stress, frustration, and everyday worries clutter the consciousness and obstruct their view of the solution. We reconcile our personal story with the narrative of the cards and through that process begin to see our own situation through new perspectives and from different angles” (2).
This is exactly how I see tarot. As a sort of mirror that helps reflect back to us parts of ourselves that we haven’t been able to see, solutions we’ve been unable to find, and ways of seeing the world that can help us to lead happier, healthier lives.
Why the donkey?
Donkeys are perceived as stubborn, but when they refuse to move it is because they sense danger and are evaluating the situation. Like the donkey, I freeze when I sense danger, but I am not always a good judge of what is dangerous and what is benign. Tarot is one tool I have learned to use to see and to know myself and the world around me. In doing so, I am better able to move freely rather than being frozen in fear unnecessarily.
Also, the word “donkey” can be used colloquially to mean fool, and we’re all on the Fool’s Journey.