In the age of COVID-19 and TikTok, we’re all discovering new things.
One hashtag that has persisted in relevance throughout all of quarantine to this point is #WitchTok, filled with educational videos on how to begin a witch practice, audios at soothing frequencies, and, of course, tarot readings.
Tarot is a pack of cards that are used to offer practitioners and patrons guidance and answers to sometimes unanswerable questions. Like anything spiritual, there have always been some who are all too willing to cast doubt upon the legitimacy of tarot. However, people have been using tarot for divination practices since the 18th century and the rise of Tarot TikTok has only expanded the love for the practice.
We spoke with Chakura Kineard, a spiritual artist and tarot reader, about her tarot practice and how you can log off TikTok and start your own.
How did you personally get into tarot?
My best friend’s parents are Intuitive Mediums. He and his family bought me my first deck, which was The Druid Craft Tarot Deck by Philip Carr-Gomm. His parents knew this was the path I was meant to be on and they gently encouraged my studies of the esoteric.
How would you encourage someone who is interested in reading tarot to get started?
If you’re at all interested in Tarot… buy a deck! You don’t have to wait till someone buys you your first. Also, so many talented people are performing the ritual of tarot reading for free on social media. Start by watching Tarot Readers on youtube.
Do you recommend reading your own tarot? If so, how should one go about that?
Absolutely read for yourself. In the beginning, it helps to get a book: Mary K. Greer and Skye Alexander are some of my favorite authors. Just start asking the deck questions. As you pull cards, journal your questions and the meaning of the cards that come up to you give answers. You’ll be surprised by how much writing down the meaning of the cards gives clarity.
To you, what is the most important lesson tarot and reading tarot can teach us?
Tarot and its depiction of the hero’s journey is a story we can all relate to. We’ve seen this story told in every way from movies to folklores, to history, and eventually, we will all go through the tarot journey cycle. We will fall in love (VI- The Lovers), we have dreams and wishes (XVII -The Star Card), and we all struggle with excess and the shadow sides of life (XV- The Devil). You are the characters, life is the story.
There are a number of people who are taken advantage of by individuals pretending to be psychic or well versed in tarot but were actually scams, myself included. How do you recommend protecting oneself from these individuals? What marks a legitimate reader or psychic, in your opinion?
This can be a tricky thing. The answer is so individualized but ultimately you should listen to yourself and your intuition. Easier said than done…so I also look out for certain things:
Does this intuitive put themselves on a pedestal… spiritually is about sharing and connecting. I heal you and you heal me… that way we’ll build community. Anyone looking to be the “all-knowing” and not share what they know is for sure shady. Look for someone who wants to develop relationships, not revenue.
The most helpful thing I can suggest is honoring the mind, body, soul connection. Is this logically a sound thing? Is my body feeling good about it and is my soul giving me a resounding yes? If you still feel unsure, ask your guides for help and clarity.
What would you want to say to someone who is hesitant about trusting tarot?
Tarot is a tool used by many from different backgrounds and walks of life. That’s amazing but you should follow your own path and do what’s best for you.
Do you know any fun facts about the history of tarot and tarot reading?
Carl Jung, the father of analytic psychology was a big believer in the benefits of having a tarot practice. I think this just further illustrates that mental health and spiritual/metaphysical work can complement each other in a holistic healing paradigm.
What’s your favorite card and/or deck?
My favorite card for sure is The World card–but my favorite deck? It’s hard to pick a favorite—they’re ALL my babies! Here is my top list:
– Rider-Waite Smith is a classic
– The New Orleans Voodoo Tarot by Martini & Glassman is my way of celebrating black girl magic!
– Thoth Tarot deck by Aleister Crowley is all rock n roll, baby!