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Romancing the Tarot: How to Use Tarot to Find True Love, Spice Up Your Sex Life, or Let Go of a Bad Relationship - Phyllis Vega

Review by Michele Jackson

  Anyone who reads cards will quickly discover that a large percentage of the questions asked, especially when reading for others, concern matters of the heart. This book, by Phyllis Vega (Power Tarot) is almost entirely devoted to the topic of relationships.

  The introduction talks about different types of relationships and how the tarot can be used to provide insight into relationship issues. Chapter One – Synchronicity, Symbols and Tarot Divination briefly explains the author’s theory on how tarot works. The author chooses to avoid tarot history by saying that the origins and original uses of the cards are unknown.  Chapter Two – Tarot Basics explains the structure of a tarot deck and describes the Major and Minor Arcana, suits, court cards and pips. Chapter Three – Getting Started provides information on choosing a deck, storing and caring for your deck, clearing, shuffling, and several other basic topics. Chapter Four – Tarot and Personal Empowerment explains that we control our destinies, vice the cards, and explains how to work with spreads in an active, vice passive, manner.

 Chapter Five – The Greater Mysteries: Major Arcana, provides card meanings for each of the Majors. A key word for the card is given at the beginning of each section. The meanings begin with general information about the card. This is followed by several specialized explanations:

These categories are followed by a section of key words and phrases for the card. These tailored meanings are this book’s best feature. The author does not skimp in her explanations for each section. Nor does she use the same words over and over, varied slightly to fit the category. This book provides advice on how to interpret each card in terms of the category and suggests appropriate actions. The meanings reminded me of advice you would get from a friend. To provide meanings of this type, the author has to rely on her own experience with the cards.  Experienced readers may find that they have a different take, but I think most readers will find something useful in these meanings. Less experienced card readers who have not built up a store of experience-based meanings will find themselves referring to this book often.

  Chapter Six – The People in Your Life: Court Cards begins with some advice on reading court cards. This is followed by information on using court cards as significators. Each card is then described in the same manner as the Major Arcana. Chapter Seven – The Other Mysteries: Pip Cards provides information on suits and numbers. Again, the meanings are in the same format as the Majors and Court Cards. This book does not skimp on the Minors, as many tarot books are wont to do. The discussions of the Minors are as robust as those provided for the Majors and Court Cards. An excerpt is provided below.

  Chapter Eight – Romantic Patterns: The Spreads briefly discusses spreads. The spreads themselves seem to be in Chapter Nine. This section provides 50 spreads designed for relationship questions. They range from three to 12 cards. Specific spreads are provided for the most commonly asked questions. For example:

  A few of the spreads are standards that have been adapted for relationships. An example is the Celtic Cross for Lovers, described as a couples-only version of the Celtic Cross.

  Chapter Ten – Putting it All Together provides four sample readings as interpreted by the author. She does not shy away from the more difficult issues, choosing to interpret spreads that answer the questions, “Should I leave my husband for another man?” and “Will my husband leave me for a younger woman?”  While these questions may make one uncomfortable, I will wager that most people who have done a significant number of readings for the public have been asked these questions before. 

  I recommend this book for anyone who reads for others, and for those who read for themselves about relationship questions. While you may not agree with all of the author’s takes on individual cards, I feel confident that most people will find this book useful, even if only for the large number of relationship spreads it provides.

          Romancing the Tarot
          Author: Phyllis Vega
          Publisher: Simon and Shuster
ISBN#: 0684864053


  Like all of the tens, this one denotes completion, and signifies a conclusion or summing up of what has gone before. With the Swords Ten, the ending is an extremely messy one. You feel as if you have been stabbed in the back. The worst part is that the betrayal comes from someone you trusted. Despite the fact that this ten is sometimes seen as a card of ruin, defeat and disaster, it isn’t about physical death. Its appearance indicates the dramatic end of a cycle or period in your life. A job or a relationship you were counting on ends, and everything looks black.

  Expectations: As with the Eight and Nine of Swords, your predicament is not nearly as bad as it seemed. You have been deeply hurt by the treachery of someone whose loyalty you took for granted. However, if you had been thinking clearly from the beginning, you would have realized that this ending was inevitable. Whatever the circumstances of the breakup, you’ve outgrown that particular job or relationship. You may even experience a feeling of relief now that you are no longer in the grip of what had become an untenable situation. The worst is behind you. Clear away the debris, then pick up the pieces and prepare to move on.

  Emotional Potential: In her book Motherpeace, Vicki Noble writes that this card “represents the letting go of some idea to which the ego has been attached.” When this happens to you, you may feel as if your life is over. Actually the future looks grim because some portion of your life as you’ve known it is ending. However along with this death comes a rebirth, and ultimately, you’ll recover from this calamity. New opportunities will arise that will change your life for the better. Meanwhile, accept defeat, acknowledge your mistakes, and ask yourself what you learned from the experience.

  Sexual Potential: Your most intimate relationship has soured. You will find that you are giving much more than you are getting, and you are having great difficulty keeping up the pretense that nothing is wrong. The appearance of this card often correlates with the discovery of an extra marital affair, or the revelation of some other relationship-shattering deception. Unless you are a candidate for martyrdom, you’ve reached the saturation point. Although you may be reluctant to abandon the union, your partner’s selfishness and utter disregard for your feelings leave you little choice. The sooner you accept the fact that it is over, the easier it will be to get on with your life.

  Material Potential: This ten warns of the disloyalty or betrayal of someone you’ve trusted. Watch your back if you draw this card in answer to a question about work, business deals, legal matters or economics. Disputes and disagreements with bosses, partners, associates, or coworkers can lead to future hardships stemming from financial setbacks, demotion, or dismissal from your current position.

  Spiritual Potential: On a spiritual level, death is always followed by rebirth. Prepare for the impending transition by releasing the past and its painful memories.

  Challenges: Having experienced real problems, perhaps even tragedy, you are quite exhausted. Still you must resist the temptation to turn your life into a melodrama, by adopting a victim mentality. Stop asking, “Why me?” and concentrate instead on doing whatever it takes to get yourself back on track.

  Outcome: You were tested and you survived. There really isn’t much left for you to fear. No matter how awful you feel, you realize that matters can get no worse. The painful struggles that brought you to the point of crises are over, and you won’t have to suffer anymore. It is the end of an illusion, but the beginning of something real.

  Key Words and Phrases: betrayal, unhappy endings, treachery, misfortune, being stabbed in the back, loss, the final and dramatic resolution of a situation, the end of thing on which you had been counting.

Read a review of Phyllis Vega's Power Tarot.

 If you are interested in purchasing this book, click here.

This review is Copyright © 2000 by Michele Jackson
Page copyright 2000 Diane Wilkes