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Tarot Cards

Card Readings, Oracles and the Art of Intuition

By Nixa De Bellis | March 1, 2023

Cartomancy or Tarot (from the original word tarocchi, revealing its 15c. Italian roots) have long been used in divination. A deck acts as a supportive ally to inner shadow work, revealing parts of us we may not have felt comfortable exploring on our own or were not yet aware of. According to Wikipedia, “French occultists claimed that tarot cards had esoteric links to ancient Egypt, the Kabbalah, Indic Tantra, or the I Ching, and these claims have been frequently repeated by authors on card divination. However, scholarly research has demonstrated that tarot cards were invented in northern Italy in the mid-15th century and confirmed that there is no historical evidence of any significant use of tarot cards for divination until the late 18th century.” Whatever the truth of its origin, working with a deck can be illuminating and fun. In addition to classical tarot, more recently medicine cards and SoulCollage decks have been added to the ritualist’s repertoire of tools to spur insights, communicate with the subconscious and spirit realms, and help sort out the workings of the body and mind. 

People also often visit tarot readers, who, by gift and practice, can be savvy at expressing the card’s messages and help to provide guidance. We have many talented and beloved readers in the Hudson Valley to turn to for inspiration and counsel who bring the future into clearer focus. We have listed some of them below, as well as shared some great decks that can be purchased in one of the many local occult or book shops.

In tarot, “spreads” are ways of laying out the cards in a pattern that carries one through a process of time or an organization of the questions one has for the cards. Most decks come with a guidebook illustrating how to make a spread and do a reading. Another way to use the cards is to choose a single card for the day is to ask a question for its voice on matters. Singular pulls or spreads show us our own insight and where to focus. Practice grows our capacity to read our cards by uncovering and honing our intuitive skills.

Which deck is for you? You may choose to purchase nine decks by different artists/healers, stick with just one that you are deeply connected with, or perhaps you will choose to create and work with SoulCollage® cards you have made yourself. There is no “correct” path or tool; your choice will be just as creative as how you will come to read the cards. Once you have worked with a number of oracle decks, you will eventually recognize the particular one(s) that you align with and can “read” more easily. Delight in your budding intuition and confidence. The deck(s) that become your special deck(s) usually do so by appealing to your senses: the size of the cards in your hands, the shine or the matte finish to touch and slide the cards over one another, the box design or cloth wrapping, the imagery and the colors the artist provides, the little booklet’s voice, and most importantly, your inspired readings received from these allies in self-understanding and growth.

Work Your Light Oracle Cards

Nixa’s Personal Favorites and her “Why”

> The Morgan Greer Tarot – My easiest to read classical tarot deck. The colors make the messages of healing from the images speak so clearly for me and I knew it upon our first meeting at a friend’s house. The back of each card has white stars on a pretty blue background. Love at first sight! Get your tarot deck HERE

> The Wild Unknown Tarot – The etched drawings in this series of four oracle decks are gorgeous and I love the way the creatrix, Kim Krans, uses titles like ‘daughter of wands’ and ‘son of swords’, and the way animals replace human forms of classical decks in a new language for a new paradigm. Get your Tarot Deck HERE

> Osho Zen Tarot – One of my favorites because the booklet has guidance on various subjects from Bhagwan Shri Rajneesh himself, as gleaned by devoted students based on recordings of his talks. The deck is an opportunity to reflect deeply, thanks to insights from a great tantric mind of the past.

> Work Your Light Oracle Cards – Visionary Rebecca Campbell and artist Danielle Noel collaborate to make the most gorgeous pink and silvery cards about soul and Source. Comes with a guidebook for attuning, activating and embracing the work you came here to do.

> My SoulCollage® Deck – This handmade deck has become my most profound deck of all because every collaged card emerged from within me alone and is absolutely original. In making the collages, one works initially without words, preparing selected images from magazine cut-outs. We allow the images to speak uniquely and intuitively, and to guide us. The creative process then moves into an aspect that is voiced and scribed, and eventually to subsequent spreads and readings, as well as journaling. The system has an organization of ‘suits’ or groupings of cards that become a family of energies to aid inner awareness and communication with and between the powerful images. I encourage you to explore this potent medium of self-discovery.


Best Places to buy oracle decks and book readings in the Hudson Valley

Everyday Magic and Intentional Goods | 69 Tinker Street Woodstock

Mirabai Books | 23 Mill Hill Road Woodstock

Awareness Shop | 180 Main Street New Paltz

Dreaming Goddess Shop | 44 Raymond Ave Poughkeepsie

Crystal Connection | 116 Sullivan Street Wurtsboro

Ritualist | 72 Main Street New Paltz, NY


In addition to the cards themselves, you could make your own oracle accoutrements or purchase at any of these metaphysical shops things like Tarot Deck bags, Tarot Card easels, Tarot Reading journals and all sorts of altar items for making your set and setting ceremonial, integrative and transformative, intuitively.

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Curious to find out more about SoulCollage® and/or take a class with Nixa? Build your own deck of self-collaged cards monthly with a group of creative, curious humans at Everyday Magic Intentional Goods and Healing in Woodstock! SoulCollage® is a process created for inspiring intuition from image and imagination. It’s easy, so fun, and often mind-blowing.

> The next card-making studio is on March 31st 6:30-9 PM
Please visit to register and join the community! 


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