A widespread practice in the Tarot community continues to puzzle me: the adoption of “magickal names.”
Go to any Tarot convention, and you’ll meet Master This and Lady That, Madame Star Whistle and Sister Flower Spirit. Others forego titles and choose one-word crunchy-sounding “Cher”-type monkiers, like CrystalShower and SummerGull.
I confess the whole business of making up a magical name just fails to appeal to me. When I read for clients, I’m Mark McElroy. When I release Tarot books, they come from Mark McElroy. Maybe that’s less memorable than GalaxyStomper or PondDaddy … but that’s my name, and I’m sticking to it.
I’m told some folks adopt these names because they don’t want clients looking them up at home. That’s cool. Others tell me that going by Lady WindHammer or Brother GrassTickle makes them feel more mystical; putting on the name is like putting on a robe. Others are given their name by the spiritual workgroup they attend.
One or two folks have been honest enough to tell me they just thought they needed something that sounded cooler than “John Wilson.” Who wants a Tarot reading from John Wilson? John Wilson doesn’t sound like someone with psychic or intuitive abilities. John Wilson sounds like a guy who would know how to grease an axle.
If someone wants to call himself LightTwinkle FancyPants, I’m fine with that. It’s an option.
Part of why I’m involved with Tarot, though, is to make it clear to everyone that Tarot can be used by anyone … even by folks with bland, Scotch-Irish names like mine.