Gratitude Tarot

Katey Flowers says that Gratitarot is a sweet and simple little exercise which she learnt from Carrie Mallon several years ago. In this video she talks about how she found herself returning to it lately to help her emotionally cope in these tricky times.

There are many tips for keeping gratitude journals online. An article by Jason Marsh points out that over recent decades, psychologists have not only identified the great social, psychological and physical health benefits that come from giving thanks; they’ve zeroed in on some concrete practices that help us reap those benefits.

Marsh points out that perhaps the most popular practice is to keep a “gratitude journal.” He says that many studies have traced a range of impressive benefits to the simple act of writing down the things for which we’re grateful—benefits including better sleep, fewer symptoms of illness, and more happiness among adults and kids alike.

Today I drew the 3 of Stones from the Wildwood Tarot. I am grateful to my parents, who did not always enjoy every advantage but made sure we had the opportunities they never had.

I cannot deny that I have found it challenging to maintain gratitude journals, mainly because it can be challenging to sit and think about what I am grateful for. Given that I have always told participants in my writing classes that it is not particularly helpful to think when facing a blank page, this is not surprising.

My ancestors came to Australia during colonisation but for some reason Native American culture has always resonated for me. Today I give thanks for their rich culture and the sharing that takes place in the Tarot Community.

So you can imagine my delight when I stumbled upon the concept of #gratitarot while trawling videos in the Tarot Tubers Community.

I am now drawing a card each day, allowing the imagery to trigger something I am grateful for and then taking a photo and posting on Instagram @tarotmidwife

I must say that I am finding that this ritual practice has proven to be comforting.

Try it! An alternative to a Tarot deck is any glossy magazine or coffee table book. Try some Bibliomancy by randomly opening a page and using an image to trigger a gratitude journal entry. If you apply a stream of consciousness technique you may find yourself writing quite a bit.

I am grateful for all the resources I have collected over a forty-five year period that support my belief that  participants in my writing classes need to be real. I always reassure them that cannot really make any ‘misteaks’.

Another option is to dig into ‘A Life of One’s Own’ and follow Marion Milner’s lead.

In 1926, more than a decade before a team of Harvard psychologists commenced history’s longest and most revelatory study of human happiness and half a century before the humanistic philosopher Erich Fromm penned his classic on the art of living, the British psychoanalyst and writer Marion Milner (February 1, 1900–May 29, 1998) undertook a seven-year experiment in living, aimed at unpeeling the existential rind of all we chronically mistake for fulfillment — prestige, pleasure, popularity — to reveal the succulent, pulsating core of what makes for genuine happiness. Along her journey of “doubts, delays, and expeditions on false trails,” which she chronicled in a diary with a field scientist’s rigor of observation, Milner ultimately discovered that we are beings profoundly different from what we imagine ourselves to be — that the things we pursue most frantically are the least likely to give us lasting joy and contentment, but there are other, truer things that we can train ourselves to attend to in the elusive pursuit of happiness. (Source: Brain Pickings)

Of course you may also feel inclined to dip into the craft box, make Gratitude Postcards and either send them to people or randomly leave them in neighbourhood letter boxes.

An Appointment to Write

The Morgan Tarot is a brilliant graphics-based, pocket sized essay on the 1970’s blending of Eastern and Western mystical traditions. It is more in tune with modern sensibilities than a traditional Tarot deck, but fully capable of delivering the same oblique gestalt, the same intensity of insight, the same connection with a larger tradition. Vastly superior to any other modern cue-card level tool (such as an angel deck or an affirmation-a-day deck) this deck provides both belly-laughs and thoughtful interior review. I consider it one of the crown-jewels of any Tarot deck collection. If I could have only three decks, this would be one of them.
Source: Amazon Review by C. Olmstead

When I make an appointment to write in a local cafe I always have a deck of cards with me. The deck used here is the Morgan Tarot which is actually more like an Oracle deck than a tarot deck. It is eclectic and humorous and reads really well.