"Lorca's Duende" One of my graduate school professors, twenty years ago,  introduced the idea of Duende to me. And you know what? I can’t remember now which poet it was  — Jorie Graham? Jane Miller?

And last week as I was blogging here, it occurred to me to include Duende on my shopping list for what goes into a good Tarot recipe/reading 🙂

What is Duende? According to that storehouse of informatics, Wikipedia, “Duende loosely means having soul, a heightened state of emotion, expression, authenticity, often connected with flamenco.” It was Lorca who developed the “aesthetics of Duende.” Are you liking this so far? Connecting Tarot to the dance? 

But Aliza, you may say, you want us to bring unbridled FEELING into our readings? Don’t our FEELINGS get in the way? Well, yes and no.

Think of it this way.

First, research this term on your own. You won’t regret it. But more specifically, you need flow to read Tarot. In astrological terms, using myself as an example, you must shut down some of your Virgo Mind and open up your Pisces Heart. While keeping a structure, form. You need the information to move up and down your body and out of your mouth. Whether you do a more strict reading of the card images or engage your intuition, or both. It’s the opposite of constipation. What you don’t want is to fact check your information as you give a reading. That’s where Duende comes in.

Think of Duende, in the context of Tarot, as body knowledge, knowledge that comes from the kishkas, in response to the querent, and dare I say it’s even at a more interesting and raw level than your Higher Self –– see, it’s not coming from your Third Eye. It’s coming from, well, your bowels, your spleen, your guts, your pelvis. Also, flow begins to begin when you honestly relate to your own life experience and that you are able to do this in the moment of reading Tarot. Do you become fused with the querent? In a sense. The way dancers become the dance. And not looking away but honoring the dark. Honoring the dark in the dark land. And maybe none of us ever achieve this. But we can try. If we dare!!

Yes, I am free-associating here and piling on the metaphors, and that’s what I want you to do. Not just in your Tarot, but in your life. Live from Duende. Read from Duende. You may not be a poet, but there is poetry in your life. I guarantee it.

Aliza’s Rule Number Ten for Tarot Reading:
Tarot is a collaborative art. It’s not that the reader is teacher and the querent is student. We switch. Every nanosecond we switch as in the fastest flamenco footstep.

Dear Readers, do you dance? 

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