Awakenings

As some of you may know, after being on a long journey of exploration through all of the world’s religions and belief systems, I have chosen to return to my point of surrender, at the feet of the cross of Jesus Christ. This is an action some (definitely all traditional Christians) would equate with leaving all occult practices and a belief in reincarnation behind. However, I’m fortunate to be connected with kindred spirits on various social media platforms and one of them took a particular interest in this plot twist. He has given me permission to share the questions he emailed me that triggered today’s blog post.

The reason I’m choosing to share this correspondence in blog format is simply because the Holy Spirit guided me to do so. I know there are many out there who struggle with reconciling their mystical nature with faith in Christ, and I want you to know you’re not alone. Please remember, the King himself never excluded you from his Kingdom. Be weary of those who seek to bar your way or ban you from following Him. Be weary of those who seek to make you a stumbling block. You may or may not be fortunate enough to find a group or congregation to worship with, but you need never forsake your faith in Him because others don’t understand your gifts or nature.

Strengthen your faith by prayer, reading, contemplation, visualisation of the gospels and praising God in song and dance. ‘Test all things and keep that which is good.’ Trust the Holy Spirit go keep guiding you, as promised by the Son of God.

I’m curious, if I may inquire as to your present journey- though I’m not familiar with your journey hardly at all…

To really understand my present journey, you have to understand my past.
My journey began in a secular home with two non-neurotypical parents who would have both been labeled mystics with surrender, proper nurturing and spiritual direction. I was christened at 6 months (as a nod to tradition), taught to pray a children’s prayer and ‘Our Father’ a few years later but was left to my own devices after that and we never attended church as a family.

My mother left when I was three and got involved with the Russian Orthodox Church in Stockholm for a while after that. I wish I knew more about her journey but she wasn’t around much and she has bad dementia now.

My father and mother had a turbulent relationship before mother left and I remember scenes of domestic violence, as well as trying to go between and separate my parents during a fight when I would have been about two years old.

The physical and verbal abuse my mother suffered was transferred mainly to me, rather than my younger sister after mother left. I am grateful for having been able to take the brunt of the abuse and act as a shield for my sister. It was hard to know what would trigger the beatings but I had a warning sign. Before dad hit me, his eyes would turn almost black.

Because of the abuse, our home represented fear more than safety to me – just the kind of environment favoured by evil entities. I was constantly afraid of going to bed at night because the demons would gather at my bedside night after night. I would pray the two prayers I had been taught frequently and at times rather fervently since it seemed to help against the powers of darkness.

Something or someone was definitely watching over me… When I was six years old, I had an out-of-body experience. I was lifted out of my body by a benevolent force that shielded me from the evil around me. I saw the very fabric of the universe, with the sounds and colours that we are limited from seeing here on earth. I heard angelic choirs singing and I didn’t want to leave…

My main solace during my childhood years was books and when I was ten years old, I came across a book by Wayne W. Dyer called ‘Your erroneous zones.’ This book helped me tremendously and, for a couple of years, before puberty set in, things seemed almost OK. I was coping. I was even able to sleep with the light off!

Then, at age 12, the violence escalated and I was punched so badly by my father in the chest, as I was lying in my bed, that I didn’t think I would live. I remember looking out of the window, seeing the moon and thinking ‘this is the last thing I see before I die…’ And often I thought he would try to kill me in my sleep. All my life, I’ve had problems sleeping because of this trauma and I still suffer from chronic chest pain – costochondritis, which I believe is related to this incidence.

But I lived, and I lived hating my life most of the time (though I imagine that this is not unique for a 15-year-old to feel this way). I was ripe for the picking. Any alternative belief system would have done but I was particularly interested in Christianity after watching ‘Jesus of Nazareth’ with Robert Powell that year. Yet the first vicar who was ever in charge of the care of my soul during confirmation training failed to see this. He brushed over my questions and it was very clear that his own faith was very thin. Scrape away one layer and it would be gone. For example, he explained away the miracle of the feeding of the multitudes with five fish and two loaves of bread as a good-will thing that happened because people started sharing what little they had when Jesus and the disciples encouraged them.

Then, less than two years later, I was finally given a chance to throw myself on the cross of Jesus. I was staying with an American, Bible-believing family during my high school exchange year. I felt safe with them. They went to a Baptist church three times a week and invited me to come with them. I loved it. Everyone was so warm and welcoming and it only took a couple of weeks after they introduced me to their teachings before I agreed to accept Jesus Christ as my saviour. I was baptised only days later. (And yes, I’m aware the Bible says there is one baptism. I guess I’ll leave it to God to decide which of the two I had he prefers…)

After that I was active in the Church for just over a decade… although it wasn’t smooth sailing and along the way, I moved from the Evangelical Church to the Catholic Church until the day came when I felt I had to leave organised religion behind. This happened during a difficult time and the thought of leaving the only ‘family’ I had ever known was causing me anguish, though I felt I had no choice as I wasn’t really welcome any more after I started owning the spiritual gifts I was born with and realised how the Church had messed up the canonization of the Bible.

I was asking uncomfortable questions and realised that I was a theological mismatch everywhere. Too hardcore in my faith for some, too ‘woo’ or too liberal for others. Not to mention the more superficial things I was being judged for. Oh, and I wanted a divorce (I had married way too young) and I had made my mind up that I really had to just leave the Church for all of the above reasons… But in my heart I knew I couldn’t leave Jesus. I didn’t want to. One night, during this difficult period, he appeared to me in a dream vision. He was seated on rock throne, above a waterfall. He didn’t speak. I was lifted up (sort of floating through the air) until I was at eye level with the Lord, and I remember his brown eyes looking deep into my heart and soul. I knew I would always still be his somehow and woke up with peace in my heart.

I’ll be 47 in only a few days. I was 17 when I surrendered my life to Christ and 27 when I started trying to claw parts of it back. It took me 20 years to figure out that I would be better off by surrendering all of it. That said, I don’t regret my journey of exploration and the knowledge I have gained of God’s glory shining through in other belief systems.

It seems that you’re having a spiritual awakening toward Christ, and that this is basically affecting you in multiple ways. How did you come to this place, if I may ask, and how does that impact your tarot reading?

In short, how I came to this place of a second awakening was through messing my life up in a big way and realising that I could try and try and try in my own power but I could never even achieve a smidge of what I could achieve if I chose to abide in him. Working deeply with my Tarot year card for 2016, Death (ego mortification) certainly helped, as did choosing to attend church during lent (combined with fasting and reading of the Scriptures).

Toward the of the year, there was pivotal ‘event.’ On the surface my life wasn’t bad as judged by the standards of the world. My home life was finally peaceful and I had a job I loved… But I knew my soul was at peril. I was still filled with pride and had not been faithful in the small things… because how can you when you do not abide in him and rely fully on his grace? So I was tested in a big way and nearly fell from grace completely. The details of this are not as important as the lesson I learned. Nobody but my ego was seriously harmed. Suffice it to say that it opened my eyes to how utterly foolish I had been and how much damage I had done inadvertently along the way, simply by relying on my own power and gifts that weren’t completely surrendered.

Re-dedicating my life and surrendering my work completely to Christ, I realised very soon that I had to purge my practices of false teachings that I had implemented one by one to prop up my ego. Many of them were things I had learned from New Age literature. Unfortunately, much of the Tarot stuff connects us with a ‘spiritual’ community steeped in the false ‘Law of Attraction’ teachings. LOA, Tarot, crystals, angels etc… It’s all lumped together, and it’s easy to find yourself on that slippery slope where you start using the Tarot to help your clients prop up their egos… Because what the ‘New Age gospel’ teaches us is how to maximise our sense of entitlement to attract more stuff into our lives because based on an ethos of ‘you’re worth it’ (Many New Age ads actually use wording similar to the l’Oreal ads!). There isn’t a smidge of surrender or grace in these teachings.

A friend of mine recently commented on how ‘Quite a few in the New Age community are working with dark entities and don’t know it it seems.’ and then asking ‘Seriously, how some can get vicious and turn on ya like a rabid dog it is quite confusing because aren’t they all about non-judgement love light and peace?’ It’s obviously because these people who think they are calling on beings of ‘light’ to help with their ‘lightwork’ are actually attracting darker entities that they turn on you and snarl like ‘rabid dogs.’

I’m not saying that all New Agers are demon-possessed or that the whole movement is intentionally evil. I’m saying that the Church actually helped give birth to the New Age movement by silencing mystics and people with spiritual gifts. The Church needs to repent and invite back those who were ostracized, just as those of us who turned our backs on the Church need to repent.

It is, of course, entirely possible to continue to read the Tarot cards under a paradigm of grace. We must do it prayerfully, just as we do everything else, and carefully formulate the right questions to ask. When we interpret the cards, we must stay on the ‘straight and narrow.’ This is not a problem if we ask the Holy Spirit to guide us.

On a practical level, I find that I have become more of a purist and have started purging my deck collection of smarmy, entitled New Age decks. I prefer the Ancient Tarot of Marseille decks, the RWS and my own Frideborg Tarot, which uses modern symbols found in the world around us that I feel connect me with the ancient archetypes.

When people ask me for Angel Readings these days, I find I need to tell them that they probably won’t get what they expect if they have been reading or listening to New Age teachers. I recently sent the following reply to one such request:

The focus of the 15 minute session is to answer your question. While I use cards with angels on them – it is essentially the same as a Tarot reading, which is to say I won’t go into detail about the cards or particular angels but rather seek to help you gain clarity. Also, to be clear, I don’t subscribe to the New Age view that the angels are here to serve our desires – they are servants of God and when they do help us, it is to help us lead lives that are holy and fully aligned with God’s will. If you are used to hearing New Age teachers speak about angels, please understand that I’m not in that genre of Angel Card readers. However, unless you ask directly about spiritual direction, none of this matters since your question is about work.

Luckily, she came back and told me I was exactly the type of reader she was looking for!

What do you relate to tarot cards now with your renewed faith?

This is a work in progress and some things may not change at all, I have always seen The Fool as representing the kind of innocence we see in someone who is filled with the Holy Spirit (a holy fool) at one end of the spectrum of possible interpretations, the Hanged Man as representing Christ’s sacrifice (this is expressed in the Frideborg Tarot imagery) and the Ace of Cups as the Holy Grail.

But I want to learn more about the history of the Middle Ages in general to understand the mindset that created the symbolic images of the Marseille Tarot. It is clear that the cards were created with a Christian ethos by people who were Spirit-filled. The Major Arcana represents the Virtues and the journey from innocence back to innocence. So part of the work before me now includes studying the works of people like Hildegard von Bingen and Julian of Norwich.

My faith in Christ never went away but it was at times overshadowed and yes, I was at times blinded by the glittery New Age teachings. More isn’t better. I don’t need crystals or other paraphernalia to express my faith any more. I don’t need any spirit guides other than my own Guardian Angel, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. I want to keep things pure and simple because that way I’m better able to provide guidance for others that is pure and from Spirit.

This doesn’t mean that I will be beating my clients over the head with the Christian message. Rather, I hope that, as a now devoted ‘Follower of the Way,’ his teachings and the Holy Spirit will infuse the guidance I provide with the love of God in subtle ways. People don’t come to Tarot readers for spiritual direction (or they rarely do) – they come for help with ‘uncomplicating’ their lives, making smart decisions and moving forward.

Love and Blessings,

Lisa Frideborg

 

 

 

Comments 34

  1. Thank you sharing your story Lisa and for sharing with us why and where you are following your heart. I appreciate your authentic desire to help others and your courage in following (your) path.

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  2. It is very brave to share a story of mistreatment and not to use it as an excuse to fail in your life. Recognizing your flaws it also is. I agree with you that the tarot isn’t compatible with been a Christian. My experience with you as a tarot reader is it that you’re quiet sincere and you don’t sell dreams.

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  3. Lisa, i think we have been friends for ten years almost. something i value very much. you share your soul and that is so precious to me because i feel it is one of the reasons we are here. one of the important things of being human. your depth and presence serves us all. much love and blessings, suzanne

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      Thank you, San – likewise, I appreciate your sincerity and am honoured to have you in my life even though we live opposite sides of the pond! Thank you so much for your kind words… they warm my heart and make me smile 🙂 <3

  4. Dear Lisa,

    Thank you for sharing your journey and your faith with us. I’ve been contemplating for years how to integrate the spiritual things (e.g. Tarot reading, Astrology, etc.) with Christianity, however I have not found the way to do it yet. I like Christianity and I believe in Jesus, however the Christian friends whom I know believe that Tarot reading, Astrology, and even yoga can be demonic. Your sharing and advice on how to view all these and how to integrate them will help me tremendously.

    Thanks,
    Meng Yew

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  5. Dear Lisa!

    I’ve always admired you since your website had the title “Love Dove Tarot”.

    The decision you have made shows us How inspiring it is because you have choosen the Most Important Path in our lives: our Dear and Beloved God. He is the Cause, the Source, the Reason and the Meaning of our lives. We must be Devoted to Him in Thoughts, Feelings and Actions. With Him we have all and without Him life has no Meaning.
    Reading the story of your life we can see that His Light and the Light of His Son Jesus always Shinned in your life, as you have never lost your Faith.
    As you are definitely a sensitive person, full of experience in tarot readings and most of all, following An. Illuminated Path, you may work Now as a Light shining and showing the Blessed Way for people. Luck of us!
    God Bless you! (and He IS surely Blessing you!)
    Janete Akemi

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      Thank you, Janete, for your kind words, support and inspiration to keep going with my work. I truly appreciate it and I appreciate you staying with me all this way. Love and Blessings, Lisa

  6. Lisa- I applaud you for being true to yourself, your faith and your clients and readers. I just discovered your site in late November and your renewed and pure direction makes me trust your guidance even more. I went to Catholic school on a scholarship and had a strong faith which got me through a very difficult childhood as well. I am so sorry for what you went through and greatly admire the person you have become. I have wandered away from my faith in the past few years after going through a difficult divorce. I’m feeling stronger now and safer and am grateful I found the strength to get out for myself and my daughters. Thank you for sharing your openness and gifts with the world. You inspire me. Love and blessings to you.

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      Thank you, Seanna. It makes me glad to hear you are healing and feeling stronger. What doesn’t kill us does make us stronger, yes? Love and blessings in return.

  7. Thank you, Lisa. I love that you have found a spiritual home that seems to suit you best. I observed over the past five years in particular, your journey through emphasizing different themes in the Tarot seemingly in search of that home. I am so happy that you have (re)found your Christian home after seeing it from more narrow perspectives before. Makes me think of Pope Francis and how he has re-expanded the beneficial role of his church in the world. Christianity can be a very big spiritual room if its organizations are willing to be flexible and to see the loving essence of Jesus’ message.

    On the flip side, yes, the New Age movement, like all spiritual movements, has dark sides as well as light ones. It is always up to us to discern what messages are free from alternative “dark” agendas.

    I’m so glad that you also see how Christian the history of the Tarot symbolism really is (although it is also built from universal human archetypes that span belief systems). I used to find myself pushing back against traditional Marseille symbolism because of the dualistic and patriarchal Christian elements (the Devil, Pope, etc.), but it’s really just one of many facets that the symbolism can take. Just like with religious beliefs, one set of Tarot symbolism will resonate with some and not with others. I have come to appreciate the Christian symbolism in the Tarot more as time has gone by.

    Although I am not a Christian in any kind of exclusivist sense (I am a universalist who believes in a totally loving, nonjudgmental intelligence/God), I am always happy to see people find their true and genuine spiritual path. I can see that this is home for you, and I am very happy to see you finding it.

    I look forward to seeing you apply your own spiritual intelligence to interpreting the Tarot from your Christian perspective. 🙂

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      Thank you for your kind and thoughtful comments, Joanne. I believe in love and mercy over judgement – that is the God Jesus shows us, a God who loved the world so much, he sent his/her son to die for us… Judgement exists or we wouldn’t have the choice of being nonjudgmental. I believe it is not my place to judge; I could not possibly know the mind of God or judge on God’s behalf. Like, you I’m not exclusivist. I’m interiorist theologically. If it tickles your fancy, you can read more about it here: https://www.dropbox.com/s/o2n95xsrfwu14mn/Interiorism_-_The_Christian_Faith_in_Dialogue_with_Other_Religions.pdf?dl=0
      Blessings, Lisa

  8. Lisa, you are truly a blessing and such an example of trust and belief. I am honored to be able to get your welcome newsletters and read the blog. Going through all you had, just gives me more inspiration to head on and overcome what looks impossible at times. Thank you and much love.

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  9. I use my Tarot cards like a phone to Heaven. I don’t think past, present, future. I ask that these three cards be used to give me a better understanding of what is needed for me to know at this time. To give me the right direction to head in or to warn me of things to be on the lookout for that are trying to distract me from my path or knock me completely off it.

    It does say in the Bible not to use divination, but considering the age he told the people this, I don’ think that applies to this generation. We have come far in our knowledge and understanding of what is right and what is wrong. Of learning to see things so as not to be deceived by dark force energy as we would of been so susceptible to in the past mind set.

    As long as you state firmly that you are only using these cards as a way to get the knowledge you seek for you highest and best good to stay on your path, He will understand that we are only trying to get closer to Him and reopen the door to when we could talk to Him in person.

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  10. I’m sad you had such a hard upbringing and so glad you at least had your sister to help you through. I think sometimes we get so caught up in one set of of beliefs being right that we can keep our eyes shut to people who might be able to help us. It was really brave of you to share your journey. Good luck with your new direction.

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  11. Thanks for sharing your with us, I feel a deeper emotional connection to you now after reading this. It is interesting to observe how the New Age movement does put a lot of emphasis on the material world. Thank you for the reminder to surrender to Christ. That is what is really important, our relationship with God.
    I am not and never will call myself Christain. I don’t think you have to be to have a relationship with God, Jesus, or the Holy Spirit. Thank you for sharing Lisa, your thoughts are helping to stretch my mind in new direction I never thought possible.

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      Thank you, Shelby. I’m so pleased you feel more connected – that’s making me smile. It was worth writing this article if it helped just one person gain a new perspective. I’m happy this happened for you. Thank God.

  12. I appreciate you sharing so openly here Lisa. As a spiritual woman finding my way, I appreciate many perspectives and beliefs. I like hearing yours as you find your way.

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  13. thank you Lisa for sharing your path.
    I found it very interesting.
    happy for you that simplicity and faith are your guidelines.
    may you be blessed

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  14. You are amazing Lisa!! My heart bleeds for the little child living in all that violence, specially here in the land “in the middle”(landet lagom) and nobody saw or did something to help you and your sister.
    So happy that your life today have changed to a life in love and happiness because you are so worth it <3.
    I will keep reading and looking forward to learn your "new" way to work with Tarot.

    Big Hugs and I'm so proud of you, sharing your darker time in your life like this can't be easy.
    Jess

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      Thank you, Jess. You’re right… writing it was relatively easy… but deciding to actually share it wasn’t. I don’t want people to think that I am my story. I shared only to exemplify how a childhood experience of the unseen world can help shape a mystic… and that it isn’t always all about angels or beautiful visions of the Blessed Mother 🙂 It was harsh but I’m truly grateful for every aspect of it and most of all for the grace of forgiveness which is healing our family bloodline. Big hugs right back atcha! Lisa

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