Tarot Tip #33: What’s All the Fuss about a Significator Card?

Tarot Tip #33 has been posted on YouTube:

What’s a Significator Card and How Do I Use It?

The use of a Significator is a time-honored Tarot-reading practice that can be confusing to many people.
Check out the video and be confused no more!

And while you’re on YouTube, you can subscribe to this Tarot Tips video series for FREE and be updated every time a new video is posted.


3-27 Tuesday’s Tiny Tarot Class

Tuesday’s Tiny Tarot class has been posted.

Visit the TarotWorks Facebook page for a little stretching exercise for your Tarot brain and a fun little way to brighten your week.

What did YOU notice?

What Time Is It?

I’ve started wearing a watch again. It was a statement of some sort when I took if off about 10 years ago, being fed up with it bossing me around. Even the name of it is a command: “Watch? Watch what? Don’t tell me what to do!”

And, it’s a statement of some sort here in 2012 now that I’ve returned the thing to my wrist.

As soon that sentence was put on the page, I knew I’d have to justify the words. The thoughts took a while to congeal, because although the re-attachment of the timing function onto my body seems like the right thing to do, I hadn’t really articulated why.

But now that it has called out to be defined, I’d say that I’m ready to engage with the world in a new way, on my own terms and in my own sense of time.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the notion of “time” lately, the words ringing in my head that there really is no such thing, that time is a man-made construct invented to order our experience, that time and space are irrelevant to modern thinkers, blah blah blah. And while it all makes sense intuitively, my linear brain still wasn’t satisfied.

An epiphany came when I realized that what we call “time” is not a measurement of time, but a measurement of change. A certain number of spins around the watch or the calendar only matters if something changes; and conversely, things that are “timeless” are seemingly not affected by the forces of change.

This explains a lot! This is why even though my body has 58 sun cycles under its belt I feel, inside myself, that I’m 14. That 14-year old part of me has not changed; it is beyond the bounds of time. Maybe my soul is and always was and always will be tuned to the vibration of a 14-year old. The 96-year old woman I take to lunch twice a week says she’s 40, and I believe her.

As I’m writing these words, the battery-operated clock in my office clicks away loudly, a reminder that soon my daughter will be here to pick up the chicken and that in 3 hours a friend is coming by for dinner. These concepts help us organize our day but we’re really not moving through time, as is so comforting and sometimes agonizing to consider. In essence, we’ve created time to move through.

“Live in the moment.” “Be in the moment.” “Live in the Now.” We’ve all heard these words for many years, and yet most of us do anything but. (Say what you will, we’re very much tied to the watch, the clock and the calendar.) But now it’s clear that the practice of being aware of the present moment not only fosters an appreciation of what IS, it also allows this notion of the artificiality of “time” to emerge.

All of this makes it much easier, almost a pleasure, now, to wear a watch. I shopped around and bought myself something really pretty, something that would be a piece of jewelry, an accessory, and something that reflects my personal taste and esthetics. It is a nice feeling to have it on my sitting lightly on wrist.

It’s not like it’s keeping track of anything real.

Opening Day of Yard Sale Season

For years I’ve been saying to my daughter that we need to have a camera crew accompanying us on our weekly yard sale excursions. Not so much for what we find, but for a view into the subculture that is yard sale folk. I like to call them “my people.”

Many faces are familiar only in the context of this Saturday morning ritual, and to see them at the grocery store or out at a movie is unsettling. Kate and I have little nicknames for some of the regulars, and we wonder if they do the same with us: “Oh good lord, there are those two. Look out for them, we call them the grabby sisters.”

It is a morning-full of entertainment out there, let me tell you. But Oprah has retired and I’ve grown tired of waiting for Nate Berkus to show up on my doorstep with his camera crew, so this year I’m taking the Yard Sale Documentation Project on myself.

My daughter has already rolled her eyes at this idea. “You’re not going to embarrass me, are you?” she pleads. My response to this is that if she wasn’t embarrassed when I drove our Mazda from the driveway onto our back lawn where we drove in circles for 90 seconds or so, then she’s probably safe.

And so it begins. Each weekend that involves the search for goodies at the crack of dawn, I’ll post the results here on the blog. There likely will be pictures of the treasures of the day; there may be tales of woe or the thrills of victory; there could be a photo of a woman mowing her lawn at 8AM whilst sporting a nightgown and hair rollers. (Oh I wish I’d had a camera on that day!)

Today’s was a modest beginning , but for March 24th no one is complaining. Our host commented to another customer that the clerk at city hall (in South Portland Maine you need a procure a $5 permit to have a yard sale or the cops will pay you a visit….and they will come and take you down) said it was the first permit issued for the 2012 season.

Although I was not the earliest bird catching these particular worms, the goods I claimed were worth getting out of bed for. The tally includes these lovely handpainted plaster “thingees” that will hang in the kitchen, a Dirt Devil “Scorpion” model hand vac, a nicely framed old-fashioned print, and in a wonderful twist of irony, a great little unused ball of twine. (See blog post from March 1st of this year.,.. I consider it “a sign.”) Total cost = $7.

For those of you who enjoy the more cerebral columns you might see posted here, don’t worry: the rest of the week will be devoted to such matters. But the Saturdays between April and November are reserved for one of my favorite past times and I’ll be happy to have you come along with me!

A Visitor’s Guide to Getting Metaphysical in Portland Maine

If you live near or are planning to visit the great State of Maine this spring or summer, here are a few tips to enrich your visit to the Pine Tree State and in particular, the fine city of Portland Maine.

Portland is often touted as a “small city with big city appeal,” and we certainly live up to the post-card image of this seaside town. But there’s a lot to do in Portland besides shopping, eating lobster, and looking at lighthouses … not that there’s anything wrong with that.

I’m talking about the unseen treasures that lie beneath the surface, the things that are the reason people come for a visit and end up staying for decades. Once you’ve been here, you’ll have to agree that there is something transcendent about Portland Maine.

But you won’t need Mysterious Madam Zohar reading your mind in order to have an authentic metaphysical experience in Portland. All you need do is put yourself in a position to see the world from a different perspective and allow your mind to surpass everyday reality.

Here are 10 easy ways to access the transcendence of the metaphysical realms without leaving the area and without spending too much money:

  1. Visit the Portland Museum of Art. Being the presence of art allows for a speedy transcendence of everyday reality, and this museum (designed by the firm of I.M. Pei) really packs a wallop.
  2. Take a ride on the Casco Bay Ferry. Take the trip to Peak’s Island, or better yet take the Mail Boat run. You’ll be a different person by the time you arrive back at the dock.
  3. Get your astrological chart done. There’s nothing like looking at your life from a cosmic viewpoint to bring a new perspective. Pick up a free copy of Portland’s Spiritual Renaissance magazine to find an astrologer that suits you.
  4. Get a really good haircut. It’s cheaper than therapy and lots more fun. Amore Styles in the Old Port and Beauty Heals in Falmouth come highly recommended.
  5. See a performance at the Merrill Auditorium. Portland boasts a state-of-the-art facility with the Merrill, and that’s not even counting the one-of-a-kind, massive Kotchmar Organ. Any offering here is sure to bring you to another plane of consciousness.
  6. Take a stroll around Mackworth Island. The walking path itself is meditative, but the beloved pet cemetery and the fairy house village put this place over the top.
  7. Purchase some “real art.” It doesn’t need to cost a small fortune; there are many local artists whose work can be had at reasonable prices. Check out Julie Vohs, Creative Spiral, and Heather Libby for a start. Loving–and owning– art is sublime.
  8. Treat yourself to a great massage. Try Nine Stones on the waterfront’s Commercial Street, the ways to pamper and renew yourself here are endless.
  9. Have your Tarot cards read. Check out TarotWorks, or visit Magick Bridges for a look at life through the archetypes of the Tarot.
  10. Sit on a park bench on the Eastern Promenade. An old-fashioned park and walking path flanked by Casco Bay on one side and magnificent Victorian mansions on the other. Pretty much any time of day, any time of year, it’s pure bliss to watch the world go by from this magical perch.

OK, do you really need any more reasons to be here now?


Tuesday’s Tiny Tarot Class Begins Today

Happy Vernal Equinox to you all! We certainly are enjoying the brighter and warmer days here in the State of Maine.

Today and each Tuesday in the foreseeable future, I’ll post a short little Tarot exercise here on the TarotWorks homepage. These tidbits are intended to stretch your Tarot brain and be a fun way to brighten up your week. That’s my part.

Your part is to share your comments and interpretations about whatever is being discussed so that we all benefit from the different perspectives. There will be no right or wrong answers to the posits presented here, and I encourage feedback from anyone who’s interested in playing along.

Part of the “art of reading Tarot” is to learn how to effectively bring your own personality, your history, your individuality, and your unique perceptions to the table. I hope these weekly exercises will expand your ways of looking at the cards so that your most-authentic interpretations can come through.

The first exercise has been posted on the TarotWorks Facebook homepage. Come on over and play!

TarotWorks Tarot Tip #32

 TarotWorks Tarot Tip #32

What to do when a reading makes no sense? What does a reader do when confronted with a bunch of cards that don’t tell a coherent story?

Rethinking — and perhaps re-defining — the role of the reader can help.

Tune in to see more: click here

Program Note


  Coming on the Vernal Equinox:
Tuesday March 20th

  The first in an ongoing series
“Tuesday’s Tiny Tarot Class”

Interactive, stimulating, and fun new ways to look at Tarot cards.

Get some new perspective ::: Be a better reader

Join us every Tuesday on the TarotWorks Facebook page for the weekly installment of Tuesday’s Tiny Tarot Class.
Here’s the link to the page : TarotWorks Facebook page

Hope to see you there!


I may be suffering from the onset of electronitis.  “The inflammation of my electrons.” Maybe it’s my chronological age, but my head is spinning from all the ways the computer wants my attention.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m exceedingly grateful for the fact that the world-wide web of connections allows me to reach out to, speak with, teach Tarot to, and do readings for people all over the world. I would have had to take up a real job long before now if not for the internet, believe it.

However, each day I am confronted with several “new” ways to pay attention electronically: Join our networking site! Investigate this new software program, you’ll wonder what you did without it! Check out this new way to manage your contacts! Watch our new video series!

It’s all TOO BIG and it’s moving too fast. Geez I sound like an old person.

No wonder it seem like time is flying by …. it is. Used to be we measured time by how much the corn grew that day or how many more weeks it would be before the snow came; or how many more days it would take to receive that package that was coming from St. Louis, or to finish hooking that rug. It takes about 90 days for an edible tomato to manifest itself, and that’s given ideal weather conditions. Human babies have the good sense to take a solid 266 days before making an appearance.

All this might sound like someone gnawing at the hands that feed. … like someone who ate too much at a 5-star restaurant complaining about a belly ache, or how super-models whine about people always taking their picture.

I’m not really complaining, but I am getting clear about needing to set some serious boundaries on how fast I’m willing to run in place to keep up with it all.

And then there’s the “kettle calling the pot black” thing. Here I am writing this blog in hopes of readers and comments and followers and subscribers. Guilty. “Read this, please, but be careful about what else you buy into.” Honestly? I would say to be careful what you buy into, period.

Maybe that’s the right and responsibility of people in the computer, social networking, collaborative consumerism world that is emerging at the lightning-fast speed of electrons: Be discerning. Let it inform you but not conform you. Don’t let it take over your life.

Isn’t that what they said about TV in the 50’s?

The Ides of March: Three of Swords Personified

No one knows where the Tarot came from, who created it, or how old it may be. But if Tarot originated in Roman times (which it didn’t) and if each Tarot card was created in response to a single event (which it wasn’t), then surely the Ides of March would have been the day that the Three of Swords was conceived. Just ask Julius Caesar.

You can’t say the guy didn’t have it coming … you don’t get to be the ruler of a global empire by being a prince among men. And it wasn’t as if he wasn’t warned: a seer had foretold that if he could make it through that day he would likely live to see many more. And yet he continued in his arrogance.

And so, on the 15th of March in 44 bce, true to the form of Three of Swords, his friends in the Roman Senate stabbed him in the back.
Twenty-three times.

We all know how this feels. (Not literally of course, but in the “how could they do that to me?” kind of way that perhaps occurred to Julius as he slumped to the ground.) The cruelty of a word, the shattering of one’s illusions, the unexpected betrayal, the morphing of a friend into a conspirator, the evaporation of trust, the piercing disappointment when we realize that things will not be as we wish them to be. Et tu, Brute?

There are three important things to keep in mind when the Three of Swords appears in a Tarot reading:

  • This is a Sword card, and the Tarot’s swords are about what happens in the mind.  Even though we probably have an emotional reaction when we see it, this is not a feeling-oriented cup card. The Three of Swords is about a shocked awareness, damaged perceptions, and dashed expectations. Sorry, things aren’t going to be working out as planned and that’s why your head is spinning.
  • When the Three of Swords appears, a hidden fault line has broken open. The fly in the ointment has risen to the surface. The fatal flaw has been revealed. Something unpleasant has been sitting underneath and we now must face whatever fact that might be.
  • The Three of Swords is not the final word, but a call to rethink the matter. We are at “3,” not “10.”  Any “10” card indicates  the completion and finality of a matter; a “3” is just the resolution of the first phase, and so there is more work to be done.

None of this makes a Three of Swords experience any easier to take. No one likes to be stabbed in the back. We feel terrible when friends deceive. Words can cut to the bone just as handily as a sharpened blade. And many times we don’t even see it coming.

As with all the cards of the Tarot, the Three of Swords shows us a part of life, an experience which we all will face at one time or another. No one likes to see the Three of Swords appear, but this is not intrinsically a “bad” card,  nor is it something particularly to avoid.

The best we can do is be aware as possible, deal with disappointments when they come, and take some time for recuperation once the Three of Swords has had its say.

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