Tarot for Recovering Pagan Fanatics
A priest and priestess stand facing one another, performing the Great
Rite symbolically by plunging a dagger into a chalice. In the circle
surrounding them, a neophyte covers her smiling mouth, trying to
suppress a giggle.
Divinatory Meaning: Innocence. A new beginning. There was a time when
all of this was good-natured fun and not something you took so seriously.
Reversed Meaning: Difficulty in expressing honest laughter. You're
taking this all too seriously. Get a life.
The magician stands outside his double-parked car in a jammed parking
lot. He wears full ceremonial regalia and has an altar set-up. In his
hand is an open book entitled "Incantations to Aspahaltia to Find
Divinatory Meaning: You need to understand your own resources better.
Don't use a sledgehammer to knock on a door.
Reversed Meaning: You have lost sight that the map is not the territory.
THE HIGH PRIESTESS
A Wiccan priestess stands, arms outstretched, wearing several pounds
worth of pentacles, Celtic jewelry, astrological bracelets and
medallions. She looks ready to tip over.
Divinatory Meaning: You may find yourself with sudden yearnings to join
a Roman Catholic convent or seminary. Even if you're most definitely not
Catholic. Don't scoff. Stranger things have happened.
Reversed Meaning: You are ready to liberate yourself form the shackles
of your old way of life and to put on the shackles of a new way of life.
THE NATURE LOVER
Un the middle of the woods stands a Pagan with her face caked in rouge
and eye shadow and lipstick. She holds up a symbol of - a miniature
Divinatory Meaning: Examine that what you claim is your passion is
something that you're really passionate about.
Reversed Meaning: You are secretly a technocrat.
A Pagan bookstore owner stands behind a counter in a bookstore jam-paked
with books, pentacles, candles, Celtic jewellery, Tarot decks, etc.
Behind him a sign reads "Pagan Emporium Bookstore: Offering Ancient
Wisdom Since 1995."
Divinatory Meaning: Don't just settle for "Question Authority". Question
those who claim to be authority.
Reversed Meaning: Question those authors who tell you to question
authority, but then still want you to buy their books and follow their
GRAND HIGH MUCKETY-MUCK
A solemn High Priest stands before an altar holding an athame. Hanging
on the wall behind him is a certificate that reads, "Certified Wiccan
initiate. Certificate granted by Walt's Wild Warehouse of Wicca."
Divinatory Meaning: Don't get distracted by initiations, titles,
special abilities, etc. Focus instead on what capabilities you really
need to live your life.
Reversed Meaning: You have a insatiable desire to get initiated.
Consider joining either the Fraternal Order of the Hedgehogs or else the
Order of Co-Hedgehogs and get this whole initiation business out of your
A young couple are having a handfasting performed in a grove of oak
trees on a sunny summer afternoon.
Divinatory Meaning: Don't get too cynical. You may be recovering from
fanaticism, but keep in mind that good things can sometimes still happen
Reversed Meaning: All you really need is love. And if you don't want to
follow that advice, well, then, the song by the same name is still cool.
A teenage Goth witch runs down the sidewalk attempting to ride a
battered broomstick. A cleaning lady with a dustpan in one hand chases
after her, hoping to retrieve her stolen broom.
Divinatory Meaning: You need to develop a better relationship with what
occultists begrudgingly refer to as "the Mundane World."
Reversed Meaning: Maybe you really are a boring person after all. Time
to clean up your act.
THE HUNGRY VEGETARIAN
There's a long buffet table at a wedding banquet. Whole roast pig, roast
duck, baked chicken, glazed turkey, and caved ham fill the buffet table.
One teeny tiny carrot resides on the plate of the hungry vegetarian. She
eyes the roast pig, perhaps wondering if it might be made out of tofu
rather than meat.
Divinatory Meaning: Time to change your habits.
Reversed Meaning: Go eat a hot dog on a Friday.
The Hermit wears a dark gray robe and has a dark gray beard. He holds a
gnarled staff in one hand and a blazing lantern in the other hand. He is
doing this however in a crowded movie theatre, and the theatre patrons
scowl at him.
Divinatory Meaning: Don't just trust yourself. Learn what part of
yourself to trust.
Reversed Meaning: It is better to have something you believe in rather
than to just knock down what you don't believe in.
THE WHEEL OF FORTUNE
A Pagan dressed in purple and yellow robes holds a stick of incense in
one hand and a compass in the other hand. He glares at the compass. The
needle point is spinning wildly, so that he can't tell which direction
is east for quarter-calling.
Divinatory Meaning: Don't just find a new direction - create a new
Reversed Meaning: When you think your life is moving somewhere, maybe
you're just going in circles.
A blindfolded man stands facing a full-length mirror.
Divinatory Meaning: You may say that there is nothing of value in
divinatory tools. But divinatory tools are nothing but a means of
looking at yourself. So perhaps you are saying that there is nothing of
value in yourself. A man who swallows a placebo cannot deny his own
Reversed Meaning: You will see through the illusions created by others.
Be on guard against becoming snotty. Be careful that you do not forget
that even illusions have their value. A man who imagines roses in the
clouds can be inspired to become a gardener.
A contortionist has his body twisted in what appears to be an impossible
position. In face, his head appears to be stuck up his own rectum.
Divinatory Meaning: You need to get your head out of your arse.
Reversed Meaning: Even though you think that this doesn't apply to you,
you really need to your head out of your arse.
An occultists's apartment is in flames. His shelves are jammed with
ceremonial daggers, magical talismans and occult books. Out of all of
this wealth of stuff, what will he try to rescue form the flames?
Actually he is reaching for his cat.
Divinatory Meaning: You are about to encounter a situation in your life
where you will make decisions that will show you the limits of occultism.
Occultism is meant to serve life, not the other way around.
Reversed Meaning: Be nice to your cat.
In a candle lit room, a Hermeticist holds a rosy cross in his left hand
a and a pentacle in the right hand. To his left side is a host of symbols
of crosses and grails. To his right side is a host of daggers and
pentacles. Behind him, a window with the shades drawn is open a crack to
reveal a hint of sunlight and the wide open outdoors.
Divinatory Meaning: You need to open yourself up to more than what you
currently allow yourself to experience.
Reversed Meaning: You are a freak. Perhaps you should spend more time in
seclusion so that others do not discover this.
The scene is two booths set up at a psychic fair - each booth manned by
a practitioner. The first booth has a big sign over it, "Pagan
Shamanistic Counselling." The practitioner of this booth glares at the
practitioner of the second booth. The sign over the second booth reads,
"New Age Shamanistic Counseling."
Divinatory Meaning: There are things that you dislike that are more
similar to you than you care to admit.
Reversed Meaning: Stock mark analysts and weather forecasters often give
pretty lousy predictions. Don't expect a fortuneteller to give perfect
predictions, but don't look too harshly upon them either. They are
trying to get you to understand yourself - and while they may be dead
wrong on some of what they say, the need to understand yourself is real.
THE TOWER OF BOOKS
An armchair magician has a den jammed full of occult books. In one
armchair is a huge stack of books almost up to the ceiling. He stands on
a stool trying to add yet another book to the top of the stack, ignorant
of the fact that the tower is bout ready to topple over on him.
Divinatory Meaning: Learn to put your ideas into action.
Reversed Meaning: Clean your room.
In an occult bookstore, a Pagan celebrity sits at a book signing table,
signing copies of her book "Witchcrap for Morons" A few feet away from
the table, a group of Neo-Pagans are scowling and turning their nose up
at the author.
Divinatory Meaning: It is easier for you to condemn what others create
than it is for you to create something that you find value in. But you
really need to learn to trust your own creative projects more.
Reversed Meaning: Quit spending so much time in occult bookstores.
A Pagan painter stands by a moonlit window as he paints a picture of the
crescent moon. The depiction of the moon is very well-crafted, but then
the painter is going back in and adding some crudely designed pentacles
on the moon, lest you forget that this is supposed to be Pagan art.
Behind him, his two dogs bark fiercely.
Divinatory Meaning: If you can let go of your pretentiousness, your
talents can blossom.
Reversed Meaning: Don't forget to feed your dogs.
THE GOLDEN APPLE
Three Pagan women stand wrestling over who gets the Golden Apple. Behind
them, unnoticed, stand a giggling Eris, who holds an entire basket of
Divinatory Meaning: Keep your perspective on what's really important.
Reversed Meaning: In order to allow a god or goddess room into your head,
you must not be too full of yourself.
JUDGMENT BY CONSPIRACY THEORISTS
A fundamentalist minister rallies against a Pagan group. The minister
conjures up images of animal sacrifice. Meanwhile, the Pagan group in
question is sitting around in a committee meeting eating vegan chili and
Divinatory Meaning: You need to get on with your life and worry less
about what other people think.
Reversed Meaning: You need to get on with your life and worry less about
what other people think. On the other hand, this doesn't give you
license to be an arsehole.
THE WORLD IN A PACK OF CARDS
A grungy prisoner in solitary confinement sits in a barren cell. He has
no bed, no fool, no sunlight, just a pack of Tarot cards. A 19th century
occultist once said that a prisoner alone in a prison cell with nothing
but a pack of Tarot cards would acquire all world knowledge. However,
this prisoner could use instead some food and some sunlight and a shower.
Divinatory Meaning: Get a hobby
Reversed Meaning: No, really, get a hobby.
The author of "Tarot for Recovering Pagan Fanatics" wishes to remain anonymous