Clear Lines of Communication
Today that person will be Regina, a colleague and friend who – like Anya herself – combines a critical, intellectual approach to life with an open mind about its mysteries. She has eschewed the rigid beliefs of her parents, strict Southern Baptists, and the overall impression she gives is one of immense practicality and humor.
At the same time, she believes she has had prophetic dreams, and tells about an occasion when she and her then-boyfriend Jason spent an evening attempting psychic communication, each guessing the cards the other drew out of a pack with surprising success. "It was just one of those nights, you know? The lines of communication between us were just -- really clear," she smiles.
Regina doesn't discount rational explanations for these things -- subtle physical cues, for example -- but neither is she willing to write off the possibility that there are mystical aspects to human experiences. She’s had a Tarot reading done once before, and says it shed light on important issues during a pivotal moment in her life. "It was an assurance that I was doing the right thing by planning to leave Tennessee and that I shouldn't worry about losing Jason… I always like the romantic notion that someone told me the dark-haired man in my life would be The One if he went with me to New England -- and he did!”
I recall Anya's complex constellation of reasons for why someone chooses the cards they do: on the one hand, it's random, she says. Pure chance. On the other, "I think I unconsciously know where every card is, even though they're shuffled -- and maybe I give off signals that influence the person." And is there a third factor? Do people, in fact, pick cards because in some sense they're “meant to?” "Maybe," Anya grins. "Yeah, I think so."
Bathed in soft light, Anya glides the shuffled deck into a long arc in front of Regina, who has recently married Jason. Today she is 8 months pregnant -- ruddily, beautifully so. This fact has an effect on every aspect of her life at the moment, from the kinds of food she’s supposed to be eating (she was diagnosed with gestational diabetes last month and has to watch her sugar) to plans for how she wants her career to progress. So it’s not surprising that we’ve all got the baby on our minds as she hovers slender fingers over the cards.
Regina makes slow and deliberate picks, leaving them face down on the table. Anya sweeps together the rest of the deck and arranges a simple spread from the chosen seven cards: alternating rows of one and two cards each, forming a diamond shape on the smooth wood. It’s a spread, she explains, that is used to get a “general overview of your life as a whole. If you want, we can do a more specific reading later on.”