Your Tarot Diary: What would Bridget Jones say? Top Tips to Learn Tarot (Part 2)
I’d been walking around mulling over writing something about keeping your Tarot diary and then, with perfect timing, the latest Bridget Jones book was all over the press in pre-launch. How could I resist that moment of synchronicity?
Aside from Helen Fielding’s witty writing, it was the authentic nature that struck a chord and endeared most of us to the character she created. Complete with flaws and hapless ways, Bridget Jones felt realistic enough to be one of us, someone we could relate to. Your diary doesn’t have to resemble a best-selling novel, but by relating the cards to real-life situations it’s the authentic connections that bring the Tarot to life for you.
I receive very different responses to the recommendation of keeping a Tarot diary, as covered in both books. Some people see it as a task or don’t know what to write, whilst others find it a source of great fun. The difference, I suppose, in being how we approach it. But it doesn’t have to be all serious and ‘dry’ words, and there’s no reason why we can’t have some fun along the way too!
If you’ve been stuck, or not sure how to approach keeping your Tarot diary, then here are a few thoughts that may help:
The Book of Life
When we view Tarot as a subject to be learned it can feel like a chore but if we consider it like a mirror we see the world as a reflection. Tarot isn’t a separate entity within itself, to be compartmentalised and put back into the box, the trick is to integrate the symbols and messages into real-life situations happening around us. As old as the Tarot may be, the archetypes are still relevant because they’re universal and timeless. When we read the Tarot for others we’re unfolding a relevant story of their life in modern-day terms. Your Tarot deck is really a book of life.
Think in Tarot-speak
Working with students on Keywords for the cards I find the ones that stick and cause the most, “Aha!” moments are familiar sayings and clichés, such as, the Monday morning feeling (Four of Cups) blast from the past (Six of Cups), or the child in a sweet shop (Seven of Cups) etc. Once we take a real situation and apply it to a card it makes more sense than just words in the book, so whatever you’re experiencing ask yourself, if this were a Tarot card which one would it be? Are you having a Ten of Wands day, a Two of Pentacles moment, or sipping champagne with the Three of Cups? In certain ways, learning Tarot is like learning a new language, so be patient with yourself, but when as you begin to think in Tarot-speak you start to see life through a different lens.
The Power of Observation
If you enjoy people watching you’ll see the Tarot spring to life in front of you; all useful snippets that can help fill the section on experiences that remind you of a card. When you walk past the couple in the supermarket exchanging clipped comments in a stand off over the breakfast cereal, the mother juggling the baby, tantrum toddler, and wayward shopping trolley, or the young couple so wrapped up in each other that they seem to have forgotten they’re in a public place. Even routine trips and mundane occurrences can take on a different hue and provide an endless supply of diary material.
The Tarot diary becomes your own book, infused with real-life situations and experiences that make the cards feel authentic; something you can personally relate to.
Just imagine what Bridget Jones’s Tarot Diary would say: One chaotic female (Queen of Wands) an aloof lawyer (King of Swords) a Christmas party (Three of Cups) a charismatic but opportunist King of Wands, a romantic relationship, or two (The Lovers). Alcohol units: cigarettes: calories consumed… (The Devil).
For Josephine Ellershaw the Tarot has been a constant life companion on a personal journey that spans almost four decades. Alongside her business background she has many years experience providing readings, healing, and metaphysical guidance to an international clientele. She's the author of the international bestseller Easy Tarot: Learn to Read the Cards Once and For All, and Easy Tarot Reading: The Process Revealed in Ten True Readings, published by Llewellyn. She lives in North Yorkshire, England, with her family and large menagerie of pets... READ MORE
Photograph credit: Ronald Grant. Renée Zellweger in Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason