What’s in the cards for Sonoma County
It’s time for Sonoma County residents to speak out, stand up and take notice of leaders who don’t seem to hear.
That’s the underlying message for the new year from Kristine Gorman, who did a recent tarot card reading focused on the county’s prospects for 2015 from her light-filled Agua Caliente studio, Tarot Art & Tattoo Gallery.
Using the Golden Tarot deck she primarily calls upon for personal readings, Gorman drew cards and conveyed their messages as they relate to the issues and opportunities for the larger Sonoma County audience.
In all tarot readings, the cards represent various concepts along life’s journey and usually are used as a guide to personal insight rather than predicting the future or suggesting specific actions.
“I’m just a conduit,” Gorman said, using the symbolism found in tarot cards to help people become “awake or aware” within their lives.
The Emperor, for example, traditionally represents power and masculine strength, but this time it came out of the deck upside down, a sign Gorman construed to mean that the county’s leadership is out of balance.
It was followed by the Knight of Coins, which she interpreted as a warning that someone in power may lose his or her job as a result.
The Page of Coins came next, representing youth or students. Gorman interpreted that as the sign of a generation gap, a disruption in trust and communication within families.
“The folks in power have a seat, and that means they have a voice,” she said. “Everybody else is trying to have a voice, but the people in strength are not putting their hands down to the victims. It surprises me that this lack of communication is also generational.”
Gorman sees “crossed wires” between county departments and little communication between fathers and sons. Without improvement, she said, “it’s difficult to get anything done.”
In her professional capacity, Gorman works with a wide range of clients and concerns. Though readings typically are personal, she was willing to “see what comes up” when asked by The Press Democrat for a broader countywide reading.
She drew more cards in response to individual questions, including a few that revealed an emphasis on food and where it comes from, perhaps a movement or people finding ways to better feed themselves and those in need.
She also saw a prominent female stepping up to make a difference, “an Elizabeth Warren type of person,” and a dominant upstart in 2015 fueled “by somebody real motivated,” Gorman said, “maybe not somebody who has a lot of clout but with thoughtful, mindful decisions.”
The cards also suggested a development or big project but perhaps with significant delays.
“Water comes up a lot, especially about where there’s breaking ground,” she said. “There’s something about breaking ground where water is, that’s key.”
Repeatedly, Gorman was drawn to the theme of Sonoma County residents who feel silenced.
“There’s just a majority of folks who are invisible. It creates a lot of stress,” she said. “I do see some focus on decisions, though.”
Throughout Gorman’s 30-minute reading, she emphasized the need for communication, both within families and in the wider community. Crime rates, homelessness, quality of life and housing issues could improve with generations coming together, listening and working as one, she said.
“There’s no balance in there for sure, but it does feel like it’s a time for action,” she said.
Gorman, 42, works under the name Visionary Woman but isn’t comfortable with labels like “mystic,” “psychic” or “clairvoyant.” She has long been empathetic and felt a sense of knowing things, “but not until I had tarot cards in hand did I know it was a gift.”
She said she recognized her intuitive abilities in her late 20s and began studying the tarot, attending workshops and finding a mentor in widely regarded tarot authority Rachel Pollack.
Gorman has been reading tarot cards for 15 years, but the mother, artist and East Coast transplant “didn’t hang up a sign” until moving west nearly eight years ago.
In addition to doing readings at the studio she shares with her husband, tattoo artist Shotsie Gorman, she does readings during Sonoma’s Tuesday night farmers market and hosts the call-in Visionary Woman radio show from 4-5 p.m. Mondays on KSVY 91.3 FM radio, receiving calls at 933-9133.
She also visits conventions and festivals, including the upcoming 24th annual Tattoo and Blues from Feb. 27 through March 1 at the Flamingo Resort in Santa Rosa.
People of all ages, genders and backgrounds approach Gorman for readings, including those “at the best times in life and at the worst times in life,” she said. Family dynamics often come into play, and guilt (even unfounded) is frequently revealed within the cards.
For them - and for the county as a whole - Gorman said she is hopeful the new year will bring a voice to those feeling defeated and unheard. Her reading shows the potential for greater communication and steps toward progress and healing, she said.
“People with strength need to be driven by a sense of justice,” Gorman said. “There needs to be a respect for life. It’s just that simple.”
Tarot Art & Tattoo Gallery, 17977 Highway 12, Sonoma, 938-3000, ?facebook.com/sonomatat?gallery.