SF BATS Report: Fangirl Moment

Benbelle Wen Reading.jpeg

I attended a session by Dianne Wilkes that was about “Enhancing and Enriching Your Tarot Readings.” A glib and energetic person, Dianne had come up for the idea of the session after a dream where she gave Hilary Clinton a tarot reading. While that might not sound like the most academic approach to a session, it turned out that hidden in her dream were two techniques that are incredibly useful for making readings richer, fuller, and more choice centered for the client. I won’t detail Ms. Wilkes techniques (get yourself to BATS if you want to info like that – such great sessions!) it rang true for me. It reminded me of what I do in my Seven Ways to See a Card series.

So I was feeling pretty smug. “I do that already.” I told myself. “Her idea of advanced is my normal.” What’s that phrase? Pride cometh before a fall? Yeah, that ‘s the one. I learned a huge lesson in this session.

You see, this wasn’t a lecture. Ms. Wilkes, like any good teacher, wanted to give us an energetic exercise to practice all we had learned. So we had to pair up and try it out face to face with an actual, other human. Gulp. This is not something I do a lot. And who is seated next to me? It’s Benebel Wen. The woman who wrote one of my favorite books on tarot. (Holistic Tarot. It’s a tome and an investment, but so well done.) A real reader. A professional. Double gulp.

She was so nice. And if she could tell that I was having a fangirl moment she didn’t let on. She read for me first, putting the techniques into practice well. My question was on a meeting with my boss’s boss that I have coming up. I wanted to know how to approach this woman in the meeting – Should I stand my ground? Go in ready for rapid fire questions? Should I go in soft and submissive? I was really impressed with how quickly Ms. Wen selected a spread, explained the logic of the spread to me, and read the cards. She was relaxed, articulate, and professional. I had my answer quickly, and it was clear. She’d even been able to put the techniques from the session into practice. I remember thinking “So this is what a tarot professional is like. This is the difference in her readings and mine. I have a lot to learn.”

My reading for her was less graceful, but surprisingly accurate! It felt good to work face to face with an actual, other human. But it was also scary. Clearly, I have some work to do.

I took a picture of the cards she used. It’s a deck with gold-leaf and you can see that she had put the astrological correspondences on the cards by hand. In particular, I wanted to remember that 4 of Wands. It showed up here, and throughout the weekend. I learned from Benebel that it’s not uncommon for there to be two women on the card, working in harmony on a garland or something, instead of a couple about to be married. The card can mean a wedding celebration or a party, but it can also mean domestic harmony between relatives, or in my case – a good meeting! The card came up so often over the weekend of SF BATS that  I’ve added another definition to my repertoire – networking.

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