A New Path

A New Path

I was sixteen the first time I saw a deck of Tarot cards. I had heard of them, and been intrigued by the concept. But my knowledge of the spiritual realm was strictly superstitious. I’d been taught that Tarot belonged in the occult category: highly suspect and deliciously naughty, but not something to be taken seriously.

Various circumstances led me to view the world with different eyes.

No one taught me the history of Tarot, or worked with me to gain an understanding of the cards. My first deck was gifted to me with little instruction. I tried to learn them for a while, but over time, put them aside, then finally gave them away when the culture I lived in deemed them dangerous.

Fast forward twenty-five years to the recent past. Various circumstances led me to view the world with different eyes. As a human, I became more open to ways of understanding the world that weren’t easily reconciled with Evangelical beliefs. As a writer of fantasy and science fiction, I began to research mythologies and magic.

Then one day, over lunch with friends, I heard about a place called Cassadaga, billed as the psychic capital of Florida. Not only does it sit on a ley line, but it was founded by people specifically intent on connecting with the spiritual realm. I was intrigued.

Not surprisingly, my next fantasy story was set in Cassadaga, giving me the perfect excuse for a research trip to the little town. Since one of the scenes in the story includes a Tarot reading, of course I had to have my cards read.

By the end of the trip, I was more than intrigued. A new Tarot deck, along with a book on how to read the cards, sat in the passenger seat, and I spent the ride home with the psychic’s words revolving in my brain. Several of her predictions and comments turned out to be correct. Others remained unprovable or ephemeral, but the positive experience led me to explore the cards for myself.

Researching the history and nature of the Tarot…

As I researched the history and nature of Tarot, I found that most of what I had been taught was skewed by a world view whose agenda I was only beginning to apprehend. The cards aren’t powered by evil. Nor are they, as it is commonly understood, a method of fortune telling. Instead, they are a medium for conversing with the Divine. That conversation can lead the seeker to making better decisions, and therefore building a better future. But mostly, the cards offer a path to understanding, both of the Divine and of myself.

Tarot has not been the only change in my belief system. There are questions and objections to the beliefs of Evangelical Christianity surfacing now that I buried for decades. Tarot has simply been one way of seeing that has recently opened up to me, helping provide a path to change that I didn’t know existed.

It is unsettling, and often painful, to find that so much of what I believed for so long is less true than I had been taught.  But it is also fascinating and wonderful that a new connection to the Divine is possible.

So, here I go. Stepping out onto a new path, one card at a time.


Balancing Paranormal

Are you like me, when it comes to finding a good paranormal story?

Nothing warms my heart – or chills my cockles – more. Especially if it includes romance. Make that romance frustrated, suppressed, and kind of skewed, and I’m hooked.

What if you woke up one day and found a wild paranormal romance unfolding in front of you?

In 1999, I had an NDE. At least, “Near-Death-Experience” is the best description I’ve found so far. I often try to invent a word that expresses what happened to me… maybe someday I’ll nail it.

This experience happened while I was asleep… or at least in an altered state, lying in bed, thinking I was asleep. A Being made of white light approached me. All I could see were hands: glowing, insubstantial, inexplicable.

The hands touched mine, and everything exploded into brilliant white light. He swept me out of my body and off on an adventure so overwhelming I can’t recall details. Showed me the universe – how vast and multilayered it is. When he returned me to my body, I drifted back into it, re-filling and warming it, resonating with ecstasy from the journey.

When I woke, I wanted more. I had to find that Being. Who was he?

Like a story with a great hook, I couldn’t put it down. And each chapter brings new adventures.

My journey since 1999 has been about teetering in balance. Trying to find ways to live with the memories of that journey, and searching for that Being, while also paying the bills.

After almost twenty years of living amidst alternate realities, two approaches help me find some of that elusive balance.

First, I’ve realized I must play along… figure out how to make things work in this plane. Follow its rules. I can’t muster the power to make up my own rules, and I know checking out of this place won’t help me find my dream-buddies. I’m making lemonade with the lemons, you might say.

Second, I find solace in writing. It’s a way to take the reins more and live through these experiences. I’ve begun crafting stories to share with others, each offering glimpses of what I’ve seen.

These strategies for living my story make it less frightening for others, and more tangible for me. Paranormal becomes okay.

When I view my life as a story I’m writing, I’m a character striving towards a goal: to reunite with my brilliant Light-Friend. Conflicts and tension crop up daily. The more time passes, the higher the stakes get. Obstructions thread through my plot, like villains that just won’t die.

But the more I write more about my life, the more sense it makes. The more I share, the more I connect with others. And best of all, I find I’m not alone.

Each of us writes our own story. I know, you’ve heard that before. But when we take an author’s – or reader’s – view, we can step back, away from the craziness or boredom, and notice how it weaves together.

What will my heroine do next?

That’s my plan for tomorrow.

About the Author:

Writing and creating images have been Leslee Hare’s most passionate creative outlets since childhood.
Leslee draws upon her experiences as a Buddhist, a teacher of kids’ Dharma classes, an Architect, a Writer, an Illustrator, and a participant on the Autism Spectrum to share her insights and view of the world.
You can see more of her work on the web here.
These days, Leslee lives in Pine Lake, Georgia, with Lucas the Game Designer, Sylvie the Cat, and as many flowers as will fit.


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Gaia's Rebellion
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