OMTimes Interviews Tori about How the Chakra Wisdom Cards Work
Tori Hartman – Chakra Wisdom Oracle
Tori Hartman is a world-renowned author, spiritual teacher, and intuitive soul. Born and raised in the free-thinking atmosphere of New York’s Greenwich Village in the 1960s, Tori has been aware of her psychic abilities since the age of eight. After a near-death experience about 25 years ago, Tori began having a series of encounters with angels that revealed the profound fables that were to become the basis of the Chakra Wisdom Oracle Cards and Chakra Wisdom Oracle Toolkit.
Tori has been featured in several highly-acclaimed publications such as the New York Times and the Los Angeles Business Journal. She has also worked with celebrities including Jeff Lewis whom she helped launch his hit TV show, Flipping Out, on Bravo Network USA.
Her latest book, Chakra Wisdom Oracle: How To Read The Cards For Yourself and Others, has just released.
An Interview with Tori Hartman on the Chakra Wisdom Oracle Card Book
OMTimes: I understand your new book, Chakra Wisdom Oracle: How to Read the Cards for Yourself and Others, is soon to be published by Watkins. And it is a step-by-step guide to help readers gain a profound understanding of the Chakra Wisdom Oracle Cards?
Tori Hartman:I would say that the idea is to use the reading techniques and concepts to master your own intuition. I don’t think we ever learn cards. I think we learn the techniques that are necessary to read cards, and then the entire realm of card reading opens to us.
When I was learning to read Tarot, 25 years ago now, I studied with some great teachers, who all told me to look at the cards and tell them what the pictures meant, rather than the other way around. My single biggest frustration is when people email me and ask what a card means. The “meaning” is in the book, yet if it were that easy then wouldn’t everyone just “get” it? Learning to intuitively read cards is like learning a new language.
I’m oddly surprised when I go to a foreign country and can’t simply speak the language. As I can use intuitive reading skills, I always think I can speak any language with ease. Apparently, this is not the case. The last time I was in France, I told a gentleman in a bookstore that I wanted to “smoke him”. Languages are trickier to master than you think. So, my new book is about learning the tools and skills that will open the language of your intuition to you.
The Fables of the Chakra Wisdom Oracle Can Bring Healing
OMTimes: Why did you write this new book?
Tori Hartman:There is a short and long answer to this. The short answer is that it’s always frustrated me that so many cool decks didn’t give more than a small leaflet or booklet from which to learn the deck; I always wanted more. Because of this, I wanted to give the person picking up my deck every opportunity to learn more, to heal their wounds and their origin issues.
Tori Hartman:Through working with the fables and cards, I found my purpose, and healed old family wounds. I originally self-published my deck because publishers told me it didn’t make sense. After spending my life savings getting it produced, I then found out that if I sold it on Amazon, they would charge me more than I paid to make it so I’d lose money on every sale. I was lost. Then, with my last bit of money, I put up a free shuffler online to give it away; my last-ditch effort to get the information out into the world. And it worked! Slowly they came; people started ordering the deck and soon, I had sold nearly ten thousand copies off my own website.
Then, after waking up one day, I felt like London was the place to go. My friends, Monty Farber and Amy Zerner, suggested speaking to a friend of theirs who had been at Harper-Collins, and he later became my agent. It was an exciting time. After that, I found Watkins. The moment I met my publisher, I loved her. I knew I had found my home. I went from broke and back, not just to publish a card deck, but to shepherd the Chakra Wisdom Oracle teachings out into the world.
Powerful Memories and the Origin of Special Gifts
OMTimes: Can you describe how you realized that you had psychic abilities?
Tori Hartman:My mother did astrology as a hobby, and from the time that I was very little, I was aware of my gift. But it was hard to tell folks that my first memory was when I was still in diapers, and after crawling on the rug, I took off flying around the room before landing back safely on the carpet. To this day, that is a powerful memory for me. Immediately after that experience, I remember wishing I could go back and fly again; a feeling that I’ve felt my whole life.
I return to that feeling every time I work with a client whose life opens to new adventures from the Chakra Wisdom Oracle.
My mother, who died of alcoholism, wholly supported my intuitive abilities. She validated my experiences again and again. Once, when I was eight years old and we were broke, I told my dad not to worry about money because he had just been given a check for $308. No such check existed so he was baffled, until later that day when a check arrived for exactly that amount. My mother kept saying I had a gift but it took a while for my father to believe me. Finally, he did.
OMTimes: Was there a special encounter in your life that made you more aware of your abilities, or encouraged you to share them with others?
Tori Hartman: Not really. Honestly, I’m more selfish than that. I always had an intention to do other things: write, act, create, etc. There was no way that I wanted to hang out a shingle that flashed, “Psychic Adviser” for the rest of my life. I would say that I’m the least likely person to do this type of work. And yet, I do. And I love it.
I decided to pursue the chakras after I suffered a near-death experience almost 20 years ago. After it happened, I was visited by a spirit who told me a collection of stories. And it was these stories that drove my fascination with the chakras and their power to transform and heal lives.
With the Chakra Wisdom Oracle Cards, I’ve gained several spiritual tools to add to my tool belt which bring me back into center. For some of us, life has been about using just one or two tools because that’s all we have on our belt. But for me, Chakra Wisdom Oracle is about embodying multiple tools to face life head on, to just jump straight in and say, ‘bring it’!
Third Book on the Chakra Wisdom Oracle
Tori Hartman: When Watkins published the cards, we had to cut the fables out. They were reduced instead to legends in the card booklet. But after publication, the publisher spoke with one of my practitioners and asked her how she learned the cards, to which she replied: “It’s easy. I just studied the fables.” Hence, the Chakra Wisdom Oracle Toolkit was born. While it is independent of the cards, it is the only place where the full fable that inspired each card lives. When you read the fable, it fills in many of the blanks for people. It especially helps those who find the simple divination in the card book isn’t enough.
The fables have always been incredibly important to me. Two years ago, I sold my home and recording studio in Los Angeles and moved to Asheville, NC. I needed to make a drastic change and it was vital for my health to leave the west coast. At one point, I was homeless, driving cross-country in a rented car with my two dogs to a rented apartment in North Carolina. But I knew it was the only way for me to break my patterns and my addictions and completely reinvent my life. The lessons from the Original Fables did that for me.
OMTimes: How does the new book, How to Read the Cards for Yourself and Others, tie into this?
Tori Hartman: In this book, I teach the techniques to read the cards as a professional would. I also go into the difference between your intuition and your brain, and what to do to get the message directly from your intuition, using buzzwords and autopilot.
Insightful Example from the Chakra Wisdom Oracle
OMTimes: What are Buzzwords or Autopilot?
Tori Hartman: Let me give you an example: I was teaching and a participant said that she was abandoned by her mother. We all know ‘abandoned’ is the buzzword here, right? That’s because we all know what abandonment means. I asked her to elaborate on how she knew that her mother had abandoned her. After a bit of ‘you know what I means,’ she finally relented and told the story of coming home each day to find that her mother wouldn’t even turn to look at her. Instead, she would simply tell her to take a snack off the table and leave the room.
She also mentioned that her father worked nights, was rarely around, and was a violent man. Then I asked her if it had occurred to her that perhaps her mother wouldn’t look directly at her, not because she didn’t want to, but because she didn’t want to reveal her bruised face? Shocked, my student then remembered her mother always being purple underneath her makeup.
My student’s entire life shifted in that one moment. She had framed her experience as abandonment but it never was. We then changed the buzzword from ‘abandoned’ to ‘protected.’ Can you imagine how differently you would approach your life if you saw yourself as being safe and protected versus abandoned? It’s a completely different mindset.
In my new book, I detail my own techniques to know the difference between your brain and your intuition, to learn about how cards represent buzzwords. This helps to discover the different aspects of a chakra while you uncover your real personal truth.
OMTimes: How did you develop your intuition?
Tori Hartman: I learned early on that my brain was not going to be a good barometer of how to survive. My parents often fought and I walked in on them engaged in a full-on fist fight. I gasped and they stopped, calmly looked at me, and told me to go back to bed and that everything was okay. It was because of this that I had to learn to trust what I didn’t see, not what I was told, because that was more trustworthy. I believe that our greatest wounds will become the gift we are here to give others.
Unique Appeal of Chakra Wisdom Oracle Cards
OMTimes: How do your oracle cards differ from others?
Tori Hartman: Oracle cards are like people – completely individual. We can look at a deck and see how deep it goes to address our consciousness at the time. Decks themselves are prophets of their era, oracle or otherwise. Doreen Virtue, for example, brought out her “positive” Angel Cards at a time when people were afraid of their shadow side. I remember someone asking me at a party years ago if I could use her deck to do readings for guests, instead of using Tarot, because her deck didn’t ‘frighten’ people. At that time, people wanted to see their light, or divinity, not their darker side.
What makes Chakra Wisdom Oracle Cards unique is the idea that there are no good or bad cards. It speaks to where we are now.
OMTimes: How important is the understanding of the chakras to develop intuition?
Tori Hartman: They are everything! They are our internal map that holds our wisdom. It is why some people can simply pick up a chakra wisdom card and by just reading what is in the booklet, they tell how spot-on their reading is. Our answers are within, and the Chakra Wisdom Oracle reflects our inner wisdom. When you really know the chakras, it’s deep work. But the cards are only as powerful as the person using them.
OMTimes: What is spirituality for you?
Tori Hartman: You are spirituality. It is our consciousness as a society; we all create it together.
OMTimes: Do you have a message for your readers?
Tori Hartman: Yes! “You” are the magic that makes these cards, these fables and the readings come to life. Thank you, thank you, thank you. I am, forever humbled.
See article on OMTimes Magazine here.