As a tarot reader, you are in a very privileged position. People trust you to offer them guidance, and often book readings when they are in a troubled or vulnerable position and are seeking help. It’s very easy for someone with an unethical agenda to take advantage of a tarot client, but it’s also easy to unintentionally do or say something which is not in your client’s best interests. Here are some tips on how to be an ethical tarot reader, whether you’re just reading for friends and family or for a wider audience.
1. Have a Statement of Ethics
This doesn’t have to be fancy, but it should cover your basic standards. Mention whether you are willing to read for children or for people under the age of 18; mention that you do not provide medical, legal or financial advice; mention your policy for reading for/about third parties who are not present, and mention any topics which you are not prepared to give guidance on, such as death – you’d be surprised how many people want to know from a tarot reader when they are going to die! Print out your statement of tarot ethics, and give it to each client before your reading.
2. Stick to It!
Having set out your principles, don’t make exceptions to them. In particular, do not offer advice on financial, legal or medical matters unless you are fully qualified to do so, and do encourage clients to seek relevant professional advice promptly where you feel they are in need of it.
3. Confidentiality Matters
Clients trust you with sensitive information, which you should never reveal to anyone else, even in a casual conversation, unless you are compelled to do so by law. It’s also important that you have a policy on how you will store and handle client information – for instance, get a client’s opt-in before you use their contact details for marketing purposes.
4. Honesty Matters
Clients trust you to give an honest interpretation of the tarot cards, and that includes honesty over more disappointing or negative readings. It’s not your place to sugar coat what the cards say, but it is your job to present that honest information to the client kindly and with compassion, and to seek guidance from the cards as to how they can best handle or mitigate a negative situation.
5. You are Not an Oracle!
It’s very flattering to be asked your personal advice, but don’t give it. Stick to what you can see in the cards. Remind the client that your personal opinion as to what they should or should not do is not what they are paying for, and not what matters.
6. Don’t Encourage Dependence
Have a policy about how frequently you will read for someone, and stick to it. Do not encourage people to come back for endless follow up readings, but do encourage them to develop their own intuition and higher senses more, so that they do not have to rely on you or any other reader or psychic.
Psychic and divination readings of any kind can be ethical minefields, but if you always keep in mind your client’s highest good, then you won’t go far wrong – and having written policies really does help you stick to your guns.