A Spiritual Counselor's Thoughts on Love


By Peggy Firth, CTM
As Tarot readers, we often assume the role of spiritual counselors for the lovelorn, who wonder why their once blissful romance has turned sour. As readers and as counselors, we should be aware of the many physical, emotional, and mental stresses, both good and bad, that appear when couples unite and desire to form long term relationships. We should also remember our ethical boundaries and non-judgment in providing comfort, clarity, and proactive measures.

Have you ever watched old movies and wondered how women survived within such limited expectations? Do you have regrets about your own past? Such introspection is important to monitor and balance your own attitudes and philosophy of life. Have you noticed that on "good days" your readings may be brighter or more positive? As wise readers, we often cull from our own experiences, beliefs, and training.  It is important to be aware of personal bias and to be tolerant of choices that are not our own.

As Valentine's Day rolls around, many of our Tarot clients are scrambling to find the key to a blissful relationship, and in our spiritual and intuitive counseling, we should keep in mind the scientific realities of human affection.  Romantic love, a physical, mental, and emotional condition, is temporarily heightened by the amphetamine-like chemical phenylethlamine, which is released in the presence of a new partner.  Phenylethlamine functions as an aphrodisiac, explaining the superhuman feelings that overcome a lover at the start of a new relationship.  A person may experience a sustained high for weeks, months, or even longer. Anthropologists tell us that women are especially affected, and may remain in this state for up to four years. 

It eventually dissipates, and once it's gone, couples are faced with the difficult challenge of maintaining a relationship with their own brain chemistry. This can create quite a struggle for many couples. Some individuals constantly seek the ‘love high,’ believing it to be a natural love experience.  These people require a steady stream of partners in order to maintain that feeling. 

Counselors often wonder why engaged couples put so much thought into their wedding planning, but leave relationship planning until after the ceremony.  Perhaps it is because Cinderella stories often end with the marriage, and the "fantasy" of married life after the newlywed stage goes largely unexplored in the pre-marital imagination.  I find that women, especially, often fail to realize how unprepared and immature they may be when they unite with their loved one. 

Exploring some of these areas during a reading can reveal new avenues for fulfilling desires, and can also illuminate goals that may be lurking in the unconscious mind of the querent.  Offering love advice is a delicate, tricky business.  Remember, do not tell a querent what to do, only gently suggest and explore alternatives.  Successful readings leave the querent empowered.

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Tarot Reflections is published by the American Tarot Association - Copyright (C) 2008 

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