‘My life changed and my business took off after a tarot card reading’

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Stars such as Anya Taylor-Joy, Kim Kardashian and Lana Del Ray are big fans of the mystic art of tarot.

And now people from all walks of life have turned to it, with an estimated 350,000 Brits using the 78 cards or astrology services once or twice a month.

Originally used as playing cards from at least the mid 15th century people began to assign specific meanings to each tarot card by the 18th century.

They even offered suggestions as to how they could be laid out for divine purposes.

Peaky Blinders star Anya, 26, recently revealed that she has used them for seven years, carrying the cards in her handbag wherever she goes. She added: “It’s so fun, and you can always pull them out at a party.”







The Death card represents an ending
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The Lovers card means a decision made about romance
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Swanky London department store Selfridges now has in-house readers Psychic Sisters.

Founder Jayne Wallace’s clients include Kim Kardashian, Tracey Emin and Kate Hudson.

Singer Lana has also used tarot imagery in her music videos.

Here, we speak to three tarot fans about the part it plays in their lives and reveal some of the meanings behind the cards…

Wild Card: Let the Tarot Tell Your Story by Jen Cownie and Fiona Lensvelt is out now, £14.99.







Anya Taylor-Joy reading tarot cards
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Help in a time of turbulence

By day Jen Cownie, 35, works at an advertising agency. But by night, she has a second job as a reader alongside pal Fiona Lensvelt.

The London-based friends have just released their first book Wild Card, a guide for beginners and those looking to refresh their skills.

“Tarot is really having a moment right now,” says Jen, left inset. “In times of turbulence, these kinds of things flourish. After lockdown, people are using it to reflect on experiences that they are having and the challenges they are facing.”







Jen Cownie and Fiona Lensvelt have been card readers since 2016
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Jen and Fiona have been readers since 2016, when they took a course at occult bookshop Treadwell’s. Two years later, they started their own stage show, Litwitchure, where they interviewed celebrities on stage while giving them a reading.

They claim tarot can be for everyone. Jen says: “To become proficient you have to memorize the meanings behind all 78 cards. Neither of us are clairvoyants. On our course, nobody was there because they thought they were psychic – they were just fascinated by it. Also, the cards are about guidance, it doesn’t mean certain things are definitely going to happen.”

My life changed after a reading

Yolandi Boshoff got her first pack of cards in 2014 after being introduced to them by friends and since then she has bought 46 more, which she keeps in a cupboard at home.

“They cost about £20 per deck, so I’ve spent almost £1,000 on them,” says Yolandi, who is 45 and lives in Sidmouth, Devon.

Three years ago, Yolandi was even inspired to make a major life change by moving to Britain with her husband Rob, 57, and son Ben, 13 for a new life in Britain.

She was also advised to take her spiritual coaching business, Divine Soul, online – a big help during the pandemic.

“Tarot showed Rob had some anxiety around staying in South Africa,” says Yolandi. “He isn’t interested in the cards, so when I first told him we had to move, he laughed. But then he said it made sense. And my business has taken off because I listened to the cards.

“I am a firm believer in following the advice that I get from my readings. Something great might just come from your decision to follow your cards, as it did in my case.”







Yolandi Boshoff got her first pack of cards in 2014
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Alexia Rock has read cards for thousands of people
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People opened up to the power

Over the past 10 years, Alexia Rock has read cards for thousands of people, from multi-millionaires to students.

The 48-year-old, who lives near London, uses an Angel Tarot pack for her readings. “It has the same number of cards as a traditional deck, and has cards that relate to bigger events that happen in your life and other ones that deal with daily events.

“The difference is in the tone of the cards. The imagery is much more softer and mystical than a typical deck.”

Alexia says that tarot previously had a bit of a bad reputation but she has noticed that a lot more people have recently contacted her for readings.

She adds: “I have had a real mix of people come to me for advice on things such as starting a relationship or what to do next when they finish college.

“There has been a real opening up to the power of tarot and the spiritual community has become much more accepted.

“The magic of tarot isn’t in the cards but in the person reading them – and everyone can tap into their intuitive abilities to do it.”

What do they actually mean?

The cards of the tarot are split up into the Major and Minor Arcana, these are all said to have their own individual special meaning.

Major Arcana, such as Death, represents universal human experiences such as falling in love or making a big change such as moving away. Meanwhile, Minor Arcana is supposed to represent the energy, emotions, and activities of our daily lives.







The Sun card is said to portend good fortune and joy
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The Hanged Man is said to reflect a need to postpone a certain action or decision
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The Sun card is said to portend good fortune and joy, indicating that the Universe is coming together, agreeing with your path.

Death doesn’t mean you’re about to die. Instead, it represents an ending. The Fool represents new beginnings and potential.

The Hanged Man is said to reflect a need to postpone a certain action or decision so you have more time to think about it.

Unsurprisingly, The Lovers card means a decision made about romance and The High Priestess means listening to your gut.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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