Using Divination as a Ritual Focus

"A tarot reading is always a reading of possibilities.
In this sense the cards are signs on a road.
Once you have the lay of the land, so to speak, 
you have a better idea of what is ahead. 
It is up to you to choose how to proceed." Ellen Dugan
     Whether the cards reach their conclusions through divination or psychological interpretation, the Tarot and Oracle cards represent archetypes, images of recurring  elements or patterns in life. Familiar concepts such as mother, father, birth, death, success, isolation, etc. A tarot deck will take these ideas and weave them into a set of imagery around a central theme.

(One of my previous spreads.)
Lenormand Oracle Deck
by Lo Scarabeo, a reproduction of
deck from 1918 Carl Schneider & Co AG
from Altenburg, Germany.
Lenormand Museum
     Lately I've been having a series of cryptically difficult dreams, in response to some hard life decisions that I've got going on. So today I turned to my favorite deck to get a better feel on it. That deck being the Lenormand Oracle. I've had it for some years now and it is the deck I always take out when I have a real problem. I find the simplicity of the images, and lack of a handy booklet for interpretation, opens me up to more intuitive explanations. 

     There I sat, and the whole mess of it just was laid out before me. One of those spreads that surprises by just how right it is. But what then? Put it away and move on? No, I thought, this I can deal with right now. In particular some of my problems had an outside source, and the images to represent those problems were already conveniently placed before me. In my mind I could see a clear picture of how it all made sense, I had a handle on it and I wasn't about to let that slip.

     Lots of spells use a focus when you are affecting another, for good or ill, an image of them. Poppets or pictures, sigils of their relationship to you, etc, charged with your intent towards them and then punctuated by some sort of climax. Like a ritual where you funnel your grief, anger, etc, into an appropriate image and then stab through that image into the earth, releasing your torment through its destruction.

     For me it was this: someone was making a very good effort to manipulate me, in life and so in my dreams it reflected this. The cards helped me to see who it was, something so right in front of me that I had completely missed it. I gathered up supplies, a candle that had already been dressed and a long black string. I held the impression of that person that the cards had shown me in my mind, and over my spread I knotted the cord by nine. Sealing them out and binding their ill will intent towards me. Afterward I wore the cord as a talisman, to remind me.

Looking at the ritual action objectively, what I take away from all of that is a feeling of impulse and imperfection. There are a great many spells and rituals, instructions for great power, to be found all over the internet. I think Ritual is whatever you need it to be. Let magic be fluid and when it comes in a rush, ride the current, don't fight. It doesn't all have to be so complicated, it just has to feel right and in that moment, it works.

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