Psychic Therapy: A Metaphysical Afternoon at the Spirit Fair
9:08 AM EDT on July 26, 2021
One time, when I was a child, I was looking through a book about unexplained phenomena, as I often did and still do. I came across an old woodcut of Satan leading a pack of fortune tellers to Hell. While that wasn’t necessarily the scary thing, what was terrifying was the idea that they had all their heads on backward, a sign that they’re unrepentant sinners for leading Christ’s followers down the path to the unholy and infernal...
All these years later, that image has managed to stick with me. It’s probably the main reason why I have never been to a psychic or fortune-teller, instead cautiously reading about them at a safe distance, laughing at them and the folks they duly bilked. But, still, the curiosity has always remained, always tempting me.
Last Saturday, a friend called me, asking if I felt like going to the Midwest City Spirit Fair with them, located at the Sheraton Hotel, 5750 Will Rogers Road. After a brutal intake of my supernatural fears, I agreed and off we went, the lobby looking much like that of a comic book convention, so much so I had to double-check the signage as we paid our $7 entry fee.
While the typical fears abounded within me—a fear of fouling God, the fact I may attract a ghost or, even worse, be completely dowsed in patchouli essential oils—those fears were put completely to rest when I saw an old friend from high school and his wife, selling scented crystal-infused candles that smelled undoubtedly enticing.
After a nice conversation with them—my humble apologies for not returning to say goodbye—as I looked at all the raven-haired women in loose frocks hawking their items and the jiggly men in wizard’s hats buying them, I came to a table filled with tarot cards of all sorts, from the laughably silly to the horrifically scary.
While I didn’t but any—nor crystals, soaps or medallions for, I’m guessing, protection—next to them, however, were a row of children’s books that I’m sure a Baptist preacher would denounce, light-hearted tomes on yoga, ESP and other variations of psychic phenomena. Man, I thought, that times sure have changed, my main reading being the Time-Life Mysteries of the Unexplained series.
Momentarily feeling the fear leave my body, I decided to visit a fortune teller—my apologies if that’s an unlikable term these days—and have my future read via the mystical tarot cards. Sure, many of the soothsayers there were somewhat clownish, resembling something from a bad movie about the end of the world. I came across one card reader, however, clad in a simple black shirt and a wholly appealing smile that made me feel more than comfortable.
Her name was Cheri, I believe, and after a bit of preliminary otherworldly chit-chat, she closed her eyes and drew my first tarot card, placing it on the table: the Devil. “Oh no….” I whispered softly to myself as I imagined malevolent demons swimming above me, desperately wanting my refried soul.
Sensing my apprehension, she let me know that the card is more symbolic, but I, instead, started telling her my life story—my entire life story—like she was more of a psychic bartender that sold tarot cards instead of tequila shots. As she pulled more cards, she laughed, saying that I only needed four to know who I was and what lied ahead. She explained it to me and I nervously joked, a mixture of nervous apprehension and futile cool.
I got up from the table, looking into her smiling eyes as I said thank you. I know that it’s a shortened future I have left, but she gave me the startling confidence to know that I still have more work to do on this Earth—good, I hope—which, in the end, is all I truly wanted to know.
I just pray I don’t wake up in the morning with my head on backwards. That would kind of suck.
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