The Great Turning: Climate Change

Between November 19th and December 20th, 2018, I will be offering free readings for feedback or testimonial. Fancy a reading on this topic? Email

The Great Turning: Tarot for coping and responding to climate change

For those of us alive on Earth right now, climate change is the most inescapable reality of our time. It is inconceivable in its scope, terrifying in its implications. While there are many people still in denial about the existence of climate change or its causes, many are carrying constant dread with them. How do we respond?

A tarot reading about climate change isn’t going to make climate change go away. It’s not going to change or sugar coat the realities facing us. It’s not going to give you false hope. But this reading will help you respond to climate change in a meaningful way from a place of spiritual depth.

I truly understood the reality of climate change for the first time in January of 2016. I had intellectually understood it for a long time, but the facts and statistics did not make their way into my heart, which was closed off and defended against the grief and terror they promised. Then one evening I was at a talk by a climate scientist and the words he said were finally able to enter into my heart: “Even if we stop all carbon emissions tomorrow, the oceans will continue to warm for the next thousand years.” I had been presented with catastrophic projections and statistics like this one before, but this one entered me fully.

Since then, I have been coming to understand that we are here to hospice the Earth, to remember our connection to and deep love for her, to uplift each other and the Indigenous peoples who have always acted as her guardians. I have also realized that one of my purposes on this Earth at this time is to help people cope emotionally and psychologically with climate change–cope in a way that doesn’t create false hope, but gives people strength to take action out of love in the face of despair.

Perhaps you have severe anxiety. Perhaps you are numbed and paralyzed. Perhaps you are engaging in frantic activism that never seems to make a difference. Perhaps you are filled with rage at political leaders who are choosing this moment to make things worse. Perhaps you are in a deep well of grief. Whatever is going on for you, let’s meet it where it is.

Hope means more than, “It will turn out alright.” We can have hope even in the midst of despair. This is not an oxymoron. If we lean into our despair and connect with the love and gratitude behind it, we can create our own hope and take action.

This reading is informed by the work of Joanna Macy and the many teachers of the Work That Reconnects, as well as my experience leading ecological Buddhist services and retreats. “The Great Turning” is a term that I have borrowed from her work, which she has in turn borrowed from the work of others. It refers, not to climate change itself, but to the great shift in human action and consciousness underway in response to climate change, nuclear dangers, social oppression, and other problems created by human beings. During 2019, I will be completing a Work That Reconnects facilitator training, after which I may offer Work That Reconnects mentorship with tarot and other spiritual practices.

Between November 19th and December 20th, 2018, I will be offering free readings for feedback or testimonial. Fancy a reading on this topic? Email