What’s in a name?
Benebell Wen, author of Holistic Tarot, put together an article for Buzzfeed about an up-and-coming generation of tarot readers. She illustrates a handful of prominent tarot professionals who do not identify as psychic.
Around the beginning of this year, I had the honor of meeting another reader who identifies herself not unlike the women presented in Wen’s article. Theresa Pridemore is the creator of The Portland Tarot.
I keep an ear open to insights from sources like Fiona Benjamin‘s Divination Radio, where she and guests embrace the word psychic and take back its power. I respect such practitioners and anticipate my own feelings reforming over time.
shdwphyre: I feel you! I prefer the label intuitive or empath. Even spiritual advisor … the term psychic comes with a lot of weight — others’ expectations and then some burdens from
seeing the future.
From Portland Tarot creator Theresa Pridemore
At my request that I blog on the topic, Theresa kindly wrote to me on how she felt about the labels we give ourselves as tarot readers. Here’s the entirety of her email, emphases mine:
“I call myself an intuitive, primarily, or rather, intuitive and Tarot reader. People I know also use the term empath, and I will say that I am an empath, but less as a title and more as an alternate description. I feel like calling that out is important, in one way or another… It’s one thing to memorize the meanings on the cards, it’s another to be open on a wavelength that allows you to see more dynamic associations on the cards.
“I’ve had the cards act as conduits for the energy of other people (living or passed) that I could sense very strongly in a reading, for past life information, for energy blocks, and the like. It’s kind of trippy when they happen, it’s never consistent. Some people are just more open than others, and because I am tuned in, I can see more if they are ready for more.
“Anyhow, I also call myself a mystic, but because it feels less grounded than the other terms, I use it less. In my view, it gives the impression that I am starry-eyed… Which of course is magical and fun, but because most of the work I do with people is often grounded in issues with business, work, and life passion, I like people to feel like they are getting an experience that’s both magical and pragmatic.
“I never call myself a psychic because I really don’t have a gift of predicting any future events that stem from specific decisions or actions (though my grandmother did, and my friend does, if given permission to look). I think people assume if you are psychic you can do this, or hear their thoughts. All I can do is read energy and story threads, and give an overall sense of likely outcomes, but not in any specific way. If I used psychic, I think people would expect a level of precision that I can’t deliver.”
Gift vs Scam
“I do think some people are psychic, though. To me, that’s a level up… That’s someone with a more fine-tuned gift. And of course, it also happens to be a term oft-used by charlatans, sadly.”