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Street Tarot

Updated: Apr 20, 2023

“Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Sailor, Doctor, Lawyer, Merchant, Chief” is a nursery rhyme familiar to many North Americans. Children believe it refers to different livihoods. Hippies and millennials may understand it as the career path of one individual trying to find themselves. Life changing transformations happen. A long-standing job is terminated. A snap judgment is made to follow one’s dream. Transitions can occur side ways through a shift in focus. An otherwise minor aspect of your everyday work world now becomes paramount.

The human instinct is to resist change. It can feel like free falling, with no solid footing to build upon. Hope may turn to despair. We can adopt unconscious strategies, such as self-sabotage, which lowers our self-esteem and makes change a painful experience. Sometimes we feel stuck and not know what is the next step to take.

A method out of this dilemma is to pay attention to the coincidences, the unexpected in one’s life. It involves using the signs and symbols found in everyday occurrences. I call this process “Street Tarot” and coined the term in an article I wrote in 2016 forThe Mentor, a newsletter published by the Michigan Bar Association.

Street Tarot is a personal system that relies on noticing the meaningful coincidences occurring in our life. At times, they can appear in a symbolic form. A common example is spotting your favorite number. Awareness of more consequential happenstances is paramount to growth.

Carl Jung wrote about the notion of synchronicity or the principle of events connected through the phenomenon of meaningful coincidences. These happenings can tie together our inner world and outer reality in a dynamic way. The key here is to trust yourself. Recognizing these personal symbols and then following the small voice of your intuition can be the greatest guide out of despair and confusion.

A relevant example of Street Tarot arose on a day when I was feeling insecure and unsure of myself. Randomly flipping through a book, I landed on a page, and read the affirmation contained therein. A few hours later when asked if I ever thought of becoming a lawyer, my response was “never”. As the word left my lips, my intuition kicked in to remind me of the earlier saying. I understood it as an inner message. So, instead of dismissing the idea of going back to school to get a law degree, I knew it was the right thing to do. That decision transformed my life. The inner pull or strong urge to do something profoundly different is referred to as a ‘calling’. There is a sense you have no other choice but to heed its directives.

Of course, there is real world, everyday tasks that must be accomplished. In order to become a lawyer, I first had to take the LSAT, and submit applications to law school. Once admitted, the school of my choice offered a joint law degree program between Canada and the US. I focused my studies on areas I knew nothing about: the world of contracts, money, income taxes, and international business transactions.

Life always flows. To enhance personal growth trust your intuitive powers and be open to receive. In your discernments, be ruthlessly honest with yourself. It can also get brutal out there. So stay open and be observant. Trust your intuition. By the way, “Anthropology student, hand bookbinder, paper restorer, tarot reader and teacher, martial arts trainer, federal criminal appeals attorney, and trustee”. This is my personal rhyme. What is yours?

Street Tarot
Street Tarot

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