The Power of the Querent

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Sometimes a positive outcome is as simple as turning cards.
Sometimes a positive outcome is as simple as turning cards.

My teenage daughter, (who was thrilled to be included in my first blog post and who loves it when we explore the Tarot), taught me a valuable lesson about the power of the querent. The querent is the name often used in Tarot that is given to the person asking a question. After a particularly challenging reading, she asked me what she could do to make the outlook better. Of course, as any parent would, I began to struggle with the already blurred line of objectivity and responded very generally. 

My words went something like: “You have the power to do anything with the cards you see,” expecting my words to prompt her into realizing that she was in control of the outcome of the reading. She instead focused on the immediate and tangible nature of the cards in front of her. Her unexpected response was, “You mean, I could just turn them over?” and, with a sly smile, proceeded to turn over four cards for which she had expressed concern. The symbolism of this one simple action was significant and, I noticed her ‘lighten’ immediately. She seemed less anxious. She asked me to keep the spread out on the floor so she could be reminded of the power that lived within her.  I immediately observed that the major life changes that were occurring for her seemed less cumbersome and, more importantly, she was showing herself as much better equipped to deal with them.

            Tarot is empowering, but that power does not make the Tarot a deterministic medium.  That power instead highlights Tarot’s role as a guide. The querent is still the master. Simple acts such as turning cards over, moving cards around, selecting specific cards or placing meaningful cards throughout the home or work space, place the power exactly where it belongs, in the hands of the person asking the questions. After all, isn’t that where the answers are truly found?

This post was originally written and posted here in December 2008.


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    Cerise Avatar

    The answers to the hardest questions and troubles are often the easiest, yet last to be spotted.
    Your daughter definitely showed her high levels of wisdom through her decision. The symbolism of her simply flipping the cards over definitely shows her laid back, problem solving manner. If only all of life’s dilemmas and uncertainties could be ‘turned around’ as easily.
    “You have the power to do anything with the cards you see” is some of the best advice I have heard lately. Life is what you make of it.
    I see a lot of symbolism in the Tarot’s role as a guide, as you mentioned, and your role as a guide to your children; more than I could express into words.
    I look forward to more entries in your blog !


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