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The Dizard Wizard

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  1. Katrinka, mmmm, yes. Thanks for your thoughts. I don't do a great deal of predictive readings, not because I don't believe in it, rather because I respect too much (*cough* fear *cough*) the consequence of the information one can receive. Does it have nothing to do with disinhibition? You could say that the tarot - the mechanics of the system, the social context, the mythic narrative that it establishes, the practice of sitting with the cards, the whole schmozzle - creates a kind of container that allows us to relax the ridgid hold that the pervading rationalist/reductionist paradigm has on our psyche. This, in itself, is a kind of disinhibition - which allows for us to have the experience of connecting with this uncanny, ineffable, thing that is so difficult to define. I'm curious if someone who was raised in a culture where this kind of practice was accepted as a matter of course would think of it as a "disinhibition". I have found there is a kind of 'click' that happens for me, internally, when I'm communicating with the ineffable. I learned how to be in touch with this thing though through using Tarot cards, but eventually I was able to find this connection outside the practice of using the Tarot. Tarot was the "gateway drug", so to speak, for me feeling and benefiting from a connection with That Which Is Unknowable. The experience isn't something that I maintain all the time, it's something that I access in little pockets throughout my day. For me, it's still a kind of disinhibition of my experience of the everyday world, but probably because I'm working against a pervasive rationalist mindset in the culture where I was raised and in which I live. Anyhoo, thanks again for your thoughts, they were definitely helpful.
  2. McFaire: Thanks for your comment. Yes, I agree with you that utility and the paranormal are not the same thing, I was a little general in my above comment and I can see how it would have caused someone to conclude that that's what I was thinking. My comment "Yes. I see no harm in it, but I think its utility is limited." was in reference to AJ-ish/Sharyn's comment "the exercise sounds like newspaper daily astrology readings. Every Scorpio is going to see themselves in whatever is written because we will interpret it for ourselves. "... essentially "the Barnum effect". I think tiny daily horoscopes in newspapers are fun, but their utility is fairly limited as means of negotiating your way through the trials and tribulations of life (depending on your horoscope writer that is... for instance, despite having never met me and not knowing who I am, Rob Brezsny consistently writes his weekly Aquarius horoscope for me personally ). I'm in the midst of writing a little talk explaining to muggles the utility of the Tarot as a psychological exercise, because of the Tarot being a sophisticated system of symbols through which one can come to a deeper knowing of the self, and find a better perspective on one's life's journey. I am writing my talk for a skeptical audience, and when they hear "Tarot cards" they can easily dismiss them as "mystical hoo-hah for starry eyed hippies". So I was hoping to find a quote from a professional reader that had dismissed the idea of the tarot being "paranormal" and what her thoughts were about the exchange between the querent and the reader. Douglas Coupland defines it as a "Situational Disinhibtion: A social contrivance within which one is allowed to become disinhibited, that is, moments of culturally approved disinhibition: when speaking with fortunetellers, to dogs and other pets, to strangers and bartenders in bars, or with Ouija boards.” Personally, I can't deny that there is something mysterious, uncanny, that I often seem to interact with when I use the cards, but that particular insight I will keep to myself and not share with the skeptics
  3. Yes. I see no harm in it, but I think its utility is limited.
  4. Groovy, thanks for the offer. That sounds like it could be an illustration of "the Barnum effect", which is often used as a strike against the Tarot. James Randi and Ray Hymen love doing stuff like that. It was the conclusion to the writer's little experiment that I was most interested in - she elucidated on the idea that there was something, an exchange between reader and querent, that happened during a reading that was most significant. I wanted to see what they (she?) said about it again. Upside, in my cursory googling I found this, which is hella-interesting and taught me the term "the Barnum effect" : https://dspace.library.uvic.ca/bitstream/handle/1828/1553/Tarot%20Cards.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y
  5. Hello, I'm looking for the author/title of a tarot book I once read and I was hoping someone here could help me. In the introduction, the author (a professional Tarot reader) describes having done a kind of scientific test. They had an assistant have 10 different querent ask a question and then shuffle the deck of Tarot cards, and then the assistant wrote down the top cards of the deck (to determine what the reading would be for that querent). Separately, the Tarot reader then wrote out readings for the 10 different tarot spreads, and later presented all of the spreads to the 10 different people. The idea being, if there was something truly paranormal happening, the 10 querent should have been able to pick the reading that was done specifically for them out of the 10 different written readings. Does anyone remember reading this anecdote? If so, from which dang book was it from!? I haven't gotten too esoteric in my Tarot readings, so it's probably one of the more popular books out there. Thanks!
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