Many tarot readers have a place where they read and reflect. Over the years, I have seen rooms which people have adapted for their tarot practice and spiritual work. Some readers have rented places away from their home.
I’ve seen beautiful tarot rooms online, with framed images of cards and deity on the wall, table decorations, or powerful and personal objects dotted around to inspire and motivate. Other rooms I have seen have been minimal, allowing the reader to colour their room with Spirit or the energy of their clients.
Not all of us have the luxury of an extra room for tarot practice or study. Even though the majority of my professional readings are set in a reading room a train-ride away (which I share with seven other readers) or in the homes of clients, I have had to adapt an area of my bedroom for tarot in the house where I live (see above). Recently screened off, I have a table and two chairs. The screens act as a divider from the remainder of my room. When I sit at the table alone or with others, they remind me that I have stepped into a different zone. For anyone who does not have a separate space to work from, the lines between work and rest and study and play can become blurred if we let them.
In the past, I have been happy to shuffle the cards here at the computer or fan them out on the bed while watching television. However, in recent times, when work has become busier and I really need time out, I realise that using the table in my bedroom has become very important.
“A sacred space is a place put aside from your normal activity. When you go there, you can be separate from all of the business of your normal day”, says Ellen Speert, an art therapist from California. As Michele Hébert (co-owner of Harmony Ranch in Glen Ellen) states, “All people have a sacred space within themselves … we can easily get lost from this inner space because of the chaos of the outer world … an external sacred space helps you find the sacred space within you.”
For those of us without extra rooms or space for a table, finding a place to link to our work with the cards may seem difficult. In the past, I have had smaller areas to play with. A table-top or box or cloth can manipulate the space it is placed on and can become sacred with intention and care. As an example, I often used the top of my old Buddha coffee table when space was an issue by placing it on my bed. The praying Buddha was a wonderful image to concentrate on or meditate over before getting down to work with the tarot.
This week, as I explore sacred space through my tarot studies, I have made using my table part of my routine. I have forced myself to sit there for study and daily draws each day. The result has actually been very powerful, but not just because of the screened-off area. Although the screens suggest a barrier between my tarot practice and my time away from it, it really is intention which separates the two – it is that shift of perspective which has been important. Tarot takes up a lot of time. It bleeds out of my readings and into my periods of relaxation, my relationships, and sleep. I recognise a need for defining these boundaries. When I step into the tarot zone, I do not answer my phone messages or think about what I am having for my dinner. When I step out of it, the same applies – what goes on in the reading zone stays in the reading zone! This week, I have practiced opening my work within the space with a prayer of intention. I have closed down my sessions with thanks and gratitude.
So, what have I discovered about sacred space this week?
I can see how important this much-neglected space in my room has been and the more I use it, the more powerful it becomes. Asking for help from the subconscious, the collective un-conscious, Spirit, or whatever floats your spiritual boat, is what really builds the walls of your sacred space though. It is about leaving your daily baggage and ego at the door and allowing our self to open up to new ideas, thoughts and messages. The more that I work in my external tarot space, I am finding it easier to construct this spiritual place within the reading room I work at away from home, outside in nature, or in someone else’s home. Therefore, sacred space is a place we build within our mind and heart, as well as in the physical landscape. This week, it has helped to focus my tarot readings and my study with the cards.
As above, so below. The place we create in our heart and mind is transferred to the one we use on Earth – and vise versa.
Do you have a sacred space? I’d love to hear your feelings about it.
Photos are of my own reading spaces at home