Short Sip Tarot: Chains

TaoCraft Short Sip is Tarot for your day in the time it takes to sip from your coffee. Today’s card is the Devil from the major arcana

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Today’s card is The Devil, from the major arcana.

This card can be intimidating. It outright scares people, especially if you look at the card through the misconception of predicting the future or the drama of paranormal fiction. This card doesn’t involve hellfire, brimstone, a red Minotaur-looking guy, two dudes in an impala or a guest appearance by Crawley and the Chattering Sisters of St. Beryl. The Devil card is way worse than the Hollywood version. It is a reminder that there really are bad things that happen and that there really are bad people in this world. Psychopaths, sociopaths, murderers, terrorists, con artists, thieves, sweet pickles and super slowed down song covers actually do exist. There is real evil in this world and taking normal, reasonable precautions are always warranted. The Devil card reminds us to stay heads up, eyes open, aware of your surroundings and to use your best street smarts. It is a call to shore up your energies and boundaries and take basic precautions; change your password, lock your doors and for crying out loud wear your mask and wash your hands.

Yesterday, we were talking about pop culture references in Tarot readings and how helpful they can be. Today, the pop culture references are the whole ballgame.

I felt nudged to pick up the Heart of Stars deck again today. In it, Thom Pham portrays the Devil as Jabba the Hutt with Princess Liea as his prisoner in place of the Baphomet image and two chained figures in the classic Devil card artwork. That narrative from the movie Return of the Jedi is key to the message. To really make sure I was paying attention to the right thing, I got the song “Free Your Mind” from the early ’90s by En Vogue followed by a flash of The Matrix.

The literal lyric “free your mind” is the essence of it.

The Devil reminds us of the bad things that can and do happen to everyone in life to one extent or another. Leia used the actual chains that imprisoned her to free herself at the most literal and essential level in addition to the help she received from the others. The intuitive reference to the Matrix movie emphasizes the role that mind and perception plays in today’s idea.

Things happen to everyone. Sometimes they happen by chance, other times they happen because of the carelessness or maliciousness of others.

The physical and mental / emotional realm needs first attention. Today’s message isn’t talking about post-traumatic stress syndrome or other very real, very serious mental health challenge. If the Devil plays a role here it is to acknowledge the very real Devil that many people have to face.

Freeing yourself from the Devils chains doesn’t mean just stopping your thoughts or your feelings. The act of not letting the past live in your head very often consists of the act of reaching out for help. That help very much exists. You are not alone. Leia took matters into her own hands, but she also had help from Luke, Han and Chewbacca. So of course, secure your physical and mental safety first and foremost, getting the help you need.

The message today is also about not making the petty into the psychopathic. It is about not letting your past re-victimize you when your physical and mental safety is otherwise secure. It is about taking opportunities to free your mind from prior conditioning. It is like Nine of Swords energy only on the major arcana level. Today, it is about not letting old issues live in your head rent free in a big way over a really long time. Seeking the help you need and not giving up until you get it is the same as Leia using her own chains to free herself.

If you are safe and well today, I’m glad. If that is the case, the Devil card may be asking you to check for old assumptions. What things have a hold on your thinking that have been otherwise resolved? What devils are perched on your shoulder an need brushing away. Breaking old, ingrained, preconditioned thought-habits is the thing that breaks the chains and sets your mind free.

Tarot, Cyberpunk Style

Cyberpunk is probably my favorite book and movie genre, despite the fact I am currently on a huge Dune kick. I’m re-reading the whole enchilada, both the original series and all of the Brian Herbert & Kevin Anderson books. So far, I’m only up to “Sisterhood” but if you want to dive into the deep end before the new Dune movie hits theaters in December, check out the book list in the authors suggested order on Tor Forge. Perfect timing for the coming (pumpkin) spice season.

Being gen X, I am also a huge William Gibson fan. The idea of working all online feels like native territory, perhaps more than my actual native state. Distance Tarot comes as easy as breathing (especially the email written ones.) As much as I love the energy of a conversation and electricity of interaction that can only come from a live reading, part of my brain is putting on sunglasses, swallowing the red pill and donning my old duster at the prospect of working 100% online.

I’ve been watching the local covid case numbers. I’ve read about the weird blood clots they’ve been seeing with the virus (I have a genetic blot clot thing to begin with, so that part caught my attention big time) Much as I hate to admit it, face to face readings are just too big of a medical risk. Even though we may be “open” and “green” I’m putting in-person readings and party readings on hold until further notice. Further notice meaning until I have a trustworthy vaccine in my arm. I’m shifting the time that otherwise would have been set aside for individual and party sessions to phone readings and creating extra, upgraded blog content.

I’m pleased to announce the new subscription TaoCraft Tarot extended blog. The basic blog won’t change, and it will remain FREE to follow and read. It will still contain one “Today’s Tarot” card reading each week, the basic version of the weekly “YouChoose Interactive Tarot” Reiki, Meditation and all of the behind the scenes, how-to, “my side of the table” content that it has now.

I’ll be adding extra subscription-only content to the blog during the rest of 2020, perhaps permanently. Subscriptions are only $5 per month and gives you access to Digital mini InkMagic readings by email (1 per subscription per month) at no extra charge. These readings alone are a $5 value if purchased separately in the TaoCraft Tarot Shop. In addition, subscribers will be able to access extra “Today’s Tarot” blog posts each week, the expanded version of the “YouChoose Interactive” weekly Tarot Readings, and subscriber only special offers and giveaways. To subscribe, please visit the Subscriber Benefits page and follow the prompts to access the members only portion of the page.

This is a new feature, and I’m learning how it works right along with you. If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact me. I appreciate your patience while I’m on one of life’s little learning curves.

Thank you all so much! I appreciate each and every one of you, no matter which subscription you choose!

Best Wishes to everyone,


Today’s Tarot 23 April 2019

When I saw #Neo from #TheMatrix was #Magician, I knew #heartofstarstarot by Thom Pham was a deck for me. The Matrix ‘s #cookie #baking #Oracle was a big part of the inspiration for my first #Tarot #blog and website, #ModernOracle. I love the part where Neo wakes up and says with a note of awe in his voice “I know kung fu” It always motivates me to practice and reminds me of those rare moments when something your sifu taught finally clicks and for half a second you feel like you might know some tiny molecule of sompin’ sompin’

Knowing means you gotta DO. DOing means in time you’ll know. They are connected, and they are both balanced with a sense of BEing without need of activity, without intellectual judgements.

Heart of Stars Tarot Copyright Thom Pham. Used with permission.