Tarot readings during the holidays

For many people and cultures, fall and winter herald the holiday season, and while it's a time of togetherness and celebration, it can also bring challenges with family tensions, boundaries, budgeting, and burnout. I pulled out five tarot cards and asked, "What do we need to know this holiday season?" The message was to create your own traditions and be true to yourself.

What are tarot cards?

Tarot cards come from the Roma, a diaspora ethnic group who immigrated to Europe from India around the 15th century. When they arrived, they were discriminated against and persecuted, a situation that continues to this day. The Romans turned to their traditional fortune-telling practices—such as cartomancy, palmistry, and tea leaf reading—as a survival trade.

Tarot was most likely originally created as a playing card in 15th-century Italy, inspired by early card games in Asia, North Africa, and the Middle East. The Roma were the first to use tarot cards as a divination tool.

How I read tarot cards

My maternal grandmother, who was Roman, began teaching me her family’s tarot cards, palm readings, and tea leaf fortune-telling when I was four years old. I share Roma history and practices through my work to celebrate my culture and raise awareness of the current human rights crisis.

The five cards I created represent Manifestation (the energy you have right now), Situation (what’s around you at this moment), Obstacles (struggles you face), Actions (What to do), and Lessons (What) you will learn this month. thing).

2023 Holiday Tarot Readings

Incarnation: The Fool

The Fool marks a new beginning. It encourages you to move forward with an open heart and mind. The holidays evoke a lot of nostalgia and bring to mind old, unloved patterns. The Fool recommends that you prepare to approach this time with a new attitude, ushering in happiness and peace. Think about your intentions: Do you want to spend time with your family or chosen family? Would you rather venture out alone or staycation? Trust that you can make this season work for you.

Scene: Demon

The devil reminds me of a villain in a fairy tale who appears at a crossroads and derails the hero. This card represents our fears, self-sabotage, martyrdom, ego, and bad habits, but none of these things can truly affect us unless we allow them to. The holidays can tempt us to overindulge in bad habits or spending, make us feel guilty for crossing boundaries with family, or tempt us to compare our lives to the perfect pictures we see around us. If these demons pop up in your path, be kind to yourself. You need self-compassion to banish them. They have no power here!

Obstacle: Hierophant

As a barrier, the Hierophant represents structure and tradition. While you may know exactly how to deal with your inner demons in your daily life, old holiday traditions may add extra stress and make you feel like you can't respect yourself. It's time to make your own traditions. That's the magic of choosing a family, come in late, leave early, opt out or have your own party. It includes bringing food that suits your dietary needs, staying sane, maintaining boundaries, and giving homemade gifts. Protect your happiness by focusing on your needs. You can't make everyone happy, and you don't have to. Make your own rules.

Action: Six of Wands

The Six of Wands is the victory card. What does winning really look like this season for you? Family dynamics can be complicated enough without the stress of the holidays, and you can only control your own behavior, so have a game plan. Map out how to achieve success and do your best to stick with it. Come up with an escape route if necessary. No matter what, celebrate all your wins. In this season of love, don’t forget to be kind to yourself.

Course: Moon

The Moon is a card that represents deep reflection and introspection, as well as spiritual growth. It invites you to be curious about your emotions and listen to what they are telling you. This time of year brings about both sadness and joy. Let your feelings flow. Do good things that truly reflect your values. This can be a healing moment.

How to take advantage of tarot lessons this holiday season

The holidays are imperfect in many ways. While you can't change the world, you can decide how you want to fit into it.

If you feel stressed, write down your worries and the emotions associated with each worry. You might be surprised at how you feel—guilt might manifest as anxiety, sadness might manifest as avoidance. This awareness will help you solve problems more effectively.

It might feel good to actually participate in the aspects of the season that you enjoy. For example, you can support LANDBACK, an organization dedicated to reclaiming Aboriginal lands, languages, cultures, and more, or donate to another Aboriginal-run organization, such as the National Aboriginal Women's Resource Center.

The holidays are imperfect in many ways. While you can't change the world, you can decide how you want to fit into it.

If you would rather spend your winter festivities with friends than family, please respect that wish. If you love your family but need strict ground rules, express them as lovingly as possible.

If you're buying a gift, consider buying from a small business. Support Roma artists by shopping with my Romania Business Directory. If you don't have a gift budget this year, let people know you're showing them love, maybe with a heartfelt conversation or a thoughtful text message.

If you're looking for a fun way to relieve stress, listen to one of my favorite podcasts, O Verda Darano (The Wagon of Fear) , produced by Roman horror media company Dead Scared Entertainment. In season one, hosts Pierce and Raquel Horvath retell classic horror stories from literature, while seasons two and three feature interviews with Roma people about their experiences with the paranormal.

Support good people doing good things, and don’t forget to take some time for yourself too.