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Oracle with Leah Arnold-Smeets


Dayna Schmidt-Johnson
Hi, everyone, my name is Dayna Schmidt-Johnson. I'm the Writual Society Community Manager and today we're talking about the cards, but not just any cards, we are talking about Oracle cards. As tarot continues to just grow and there's more and more decks out there, there has also been a rise in a lot of unconventional decks and they're often ending up being called Oracle cards. So, here to talk more about Oracle cards is Tarot reader and owner of the WooWoo Realm, Leah Arnold-Smeets. Welcome, Leah!

Leah Arnold-Smeets
Hello, hello!

Dayna Schmidt-Johnson
We're so glad to have you here today. I just want to start by putting some definition around this concept of Tarot versus Oracle. What is the difference?

Leah Arnold-Smeets
You know, when I first started getting into this, this woo-woo side and tarot, I didn't know the difference either. I thought all were just evil, right? I've been told oh my god, these are, everything's evil, scary, the devil. I'm like, okay, here we go.

I want to start out by saying oracle cards are, are literally like affirmation cards. They are whatever the creator wants to put on a card and the message for that person in that particular energy. That's what it is.

There's no kind of rhyme or reason to oracle decks, whereas with tarot decks, there's a traditional structure, you know, the Major Arcana, Minor Arcana, and then you have the suits and numerology,

With oracle cards, they're nice, they're simple, they are what they are intended to be and created for. So, in a nutshell, oracle cards are kind of like that grandma that comes, 'oh, come here, I'll make it all better.' You need a little pat on your head, a pat on the back, whatever you need. I'm here.

Tarot's like that sassy auntie, that's like, 'I'm going to tell you what you need to hear, not what you want to hear.' And so there's a difference in that regard. Tarot can also be soft as well. But oracle cards are beautiful in the fact that they are exactly what the creator intended them to be.

And so there's, I mean, trying to pinpoint what Oracle is, it's up in the air, because some of them are based off of angels, some of them are based off of color. Some of them are based off of whatever art the creator does at that particular time in place. Or they could be simply affirmation cards.

So oracle decks are, I mean, there's just a whole gamut and all in between, as well. So yeah, it's kind of hard to explain it. But tarot is a tarot deck, right? And then Oracle takes on the life of its own.

Dayna Schmidt-Johnson
I love that connection of, 'it's what the creator intended it to be,' it just makes it so much more accessible, I think. You know, you will probably be drawn to one deck over another for that reason, or the creator themselves and want to buy all of their Oracle type of decks that makes a lot of sense. And what they are hoping that you get out of it, is what Oracle ends up being.

So then what is the benefits of using Oracle?

Leah Arnold-Smeets
Oracle, like I said, it has its own energy. And so when you have an Oracle deck that you really resonate with, that could be because, you know, the artists creator, or the imagery and aesthetic, you vibe with that. And if you're called towards it, there's really no benefit, other than what you are expecting to get out of it, what the intention is for the message.

So for instance, if I just need a, an affirmation for the day, if I need something to just hype me up, kind of get me in that vibe of okay, let's do this. In the energy of that, then I'll get a deck that an Oracle deck that speaks to that energy by want something a little deeper, a little bit more woo-woo, a little bit more like give me a Pleiadian kind of message, get it from the cosmos. I'll go to the particular deck for that purpose.

So it just depends on what the purpose is that you're wanting it to serve. That's why I have 120 decks and counting. But it all depends on what you need from it and oracle decks.

I love that you can get one for this particular purpose, you can get one for that particular purpose. And there are ones where it's for women, there's one where it's for men, there's one that's for a career and job and so it just really depends on what you're looking for.

So I don't really see it like a con so much I think there's all pros in what you want and benefits into what you use Oracle or a tarot deck for. Oracle's just easier to segue into because there's no, like I said, structure system, memorization, right? There's no memorization with these cards because they all, typically, all oracle decks come with a guidebook or if it doesn't come with a guidebook that tells you what each card means, it's pretty self explanatory.

Like I keep going back to like if it's an affirmation or something or a word or self care card. And so that's the benefit I would say, of using an Oracle deck versus like a tarot deck. Because there's no like, barriers to entry of having to memorize anything. Oracle decks are what they are, you get what you pay for. It's it's very cut-and-dry. And it's it's very simple to use. There's very little learning curve there.

Dayna Schmidt-Johnson
So then in that same way that these kind of have their own capabilities aside from Tarot, should we be using them the way we use Tarot? Like, like with a three card spread or Celtic Cross spread? Or is there something else we should be doing with Oracle cards?

Leah Arnold-Smeets
I mean, a little bit of all in between. I mean, it's it's really up to you. I actually posted recently about how my followers on Instagram can use my Tarot spreads, I always called them Tarot spreads just because I intend them to be used with Tarot. That's when I'm conjuring them up and compiling them.

But I did a post and I said, 'Hey, if you don't do tarot, you don't feel comfortable with tarot, swap in some oracle cards.' I mean, that's absolutely okay. It's interchangeable. And so oracle cards will...let me back up. I really believe that whatever, as long as the intent is there, and you're open to receiving the messages, I truly believe you can use a tarot deck, you can use Oracle deck. I mean, you can use playing cards, as long as you associate them with some sort of message or energy. And yeah, they're totally interchangeable in my world. I'll say that. Yes.

Dayna Schmidt-Johnson
Terrific. That makes I think it a lot more accessible for those of us who have come into it from the Tarot world, right? What do I do with these cards? Yes, exactly. Treat them like the other ones. If that works for you.

So when we're out in the world, when maybe we're looking to add a new Oracle deck, I know so many of these just magically come to us. But if we're looking for something, is there anything we should be looking for specifically, when shopping for an Oracle deck?

Leah Arnold-Smeets
So right away, I always get back in touch with why do I need need, right? I use that very loosely. What's the intent of the card? Or the cards, the deck? Whatever it may be?

Where are you at in your life? Where are you at in your healing journey? What healing or medicine are you looking for? What has piqued your interest, right?

And so, above all, that after you've kind of parsed through that a little bit and get into the feel of like, okay, I have a direction, at least of where I'm going, I want this for my personal healing journey.

Then you kind of what I do go on Amazon, Google, or I go to a spiritual metaphysical shop, and I kind of just peruse the shelves. And then after that, what calls me? Like, what am I called towards? What's kind of like, ooh, that's pretty and shiny and glittery. Or wow, that's going to give me the messages I need to hear right now, kind of like put some fire under my you know what, and so it completely depends on where you're at, in your own personal journey and what you're called towards, because I truly believe and I'll say it again, each tarot deck, each Oracle deck, each crystal, whatever you're working with in this, like woo-woo space, it has an energy.

And depending on where you're at, in your journey, that Oracle deck can speak to you differently than it speaks to me and where I'm at in my healing journey or spiritual journey or just career life, whatever it may be.

So before kids, I'm not going to get an Oracle deck that's for mothers, maybe, you know, but now that I'm a mother, absolutely. So see what resonates, see what calls you and don't be afraid to be like, I got this oracle deck. I don't know why or tarot deck, and it's gonna sit on my shelf because I was meant to buy it, but I don't know why. It'll call you when it needs to. So trust that intuitive nudge. And really, the simplest answer to your question is, trust your intuition. Trust your intuition. 

Dayna Schmidt-Johnson
Well, I think that's just the simplest answer for life.

Leah Arnold-Smeets
Trust your intuition. Trust yourself.

Dayna Schmidt-Johnson
If only we always could. That's what we're here to work on.

Leah Arnold-Smeets

Dayna Schmidt-Johnson
Leah, tell us a little bit more about your own Oracle and Tarot journey, you kind of came to this world from a more conventional side of things.

Leah Arnold-Smeets
Very. So I actually come from the tech world, from the business side of the tech world, I owned an immersive technology company, I was the COO, my business partner and I ran that. And then it was kind of like our journeys were at the same point in time where we just felt like this isn't for us anymore. There has to be something more, something deeper.

And it was just so exhausting, you know, working for the man, even though we owned our own company. And so we made the decision to kind of take a step back, and explore and then the pandemic hit. So that was good timing.

And so we explored our different avenues, you know, or different avenues for ourselves and our passions and what lights us up. And for me, it was healing. And so I really dove into my Tarot practice, really dove into oracle cards, because I'll be honest, I didn't even know those really existed. And that's what they were called.

Oracle sounds like this crazy spiritual, like, oh, my God, Voodoo, you know, kind of thing. And so same with Tarot. And so when I saw that oracle cards are basically like little affirmations on some level and self care and little messages of like, you can do it. I was like, Oh, this isn't so scary. Maybe I should explore more things for myself instead of listening to the masses.

And so one thing led to another, I started an Instagram, it was just supposed to be me posting about my tarot and Oracle journey. Because it really just put into perspective, that what I was feeling over here, and that journey was really, like a call for me to explore myself a little bit more. What do I like, what healing is available to me, I always was called to be a healer. And then I through the cards, it kind of affirmed that.

And so it all just was these, it was like a little breadcrumb trail that I was following and the cards were helping me explore that. Both tarot and Oracle. And so that's how I'm like when I needed to be put in my place. I went to Tarot, when I needed it a little softer and a little bit more caring and nurturing and coddling, I went to Oracle. And so they were used hand in hand to progress me along this, this spiritual path.

And I opened up the Instagram that I was like, someone was like, 'Have you ever thought of doing readings for people?' And I was like, uh, never. And then I opened up a website. And then I started doing readings for people. And then I started coaching and then I'm here with you doing workshops and, and it's crazy how it just took on a life of its own. But I do believe the segue and the breadcrumb, like the stepping stones were tarot and Oracle.

Dayna Schmidt-Johnson
What a cool story and just the the natural flow of it for you. 

Leah Arnold-Smeets
Yes, beautiful, organic, so organic and beautiful. And followed my intuition. Trust it because it went like this. I mean, trust me, Dark Night of the Soul shadow work, all of that got stuck and all that, and then kind of came out and was like, whoa, all those things that I went through, and the cards helped me realize this. It wasn't in vain. I get to share my story. I get to relate to people when I do readings, and all that trauma and all that.

The cards helped me put it in perspective in a way that was digestible, that was feasible for healing, right? It made it tangible in a sense. And so it gave me hope and restored faith that you know, I am the healer and I can then be a mirror for others. So the cards were mirrors for me and my healing, and trauma and whatnot, and then an awakening I should say, so that I could then do the same for others and it was beautiful, absolutely beautiful.

Dayna Schmidt-Johnson
Well, we cannot wait to learn more from you and hear more about your journey when you are our guest teacher in the Writual Society in September. Now, I'm curious, do people need to have an Oracle deck in order to participate?

Leah Arnold-Smeets
I'm going to say no, but it's highly recommended and encouraged. Like when I started out with oracle decks, I didn't know which one to buy. I didn't know where to go, start, what do I do? It's overwhelming. I went online and found a free Oracle deck that I could print out myself. And it was like, I think it was based on plants and herbs, because I was really into gardening then. So I was like, oh, all of these plants and herbs have a spirit, you know, an energy. And so I started there.

And then I started, I dipped my toe in the water, got my feet wet, and then felt more comfortable when, of course, the algorithm and Big Brother listening, things were suggested to me, it was like, that Oracle deck is beautiful. And oh my gosh, that creator. And so once that door opens, it'll open wide open. And my answer to your question is no, but highly recommended.

Because in the workshop, I'm planning on doing some spreads, some test readings, you know, some practicum. And so I would love for the attendees to have decks with them, so that they can practice in themselves and see the beauty and the art and just the the capability of having tangible evidence of your healing and your messages in front of you. 

Dayna Schmidt-Johnson
So perfect. So whether you have a deck or not come and join us in September. Leah, in the meantime, where can people find you?

Leah Arnold-Smeets
So on Instagram, I'm @woowoorealm, you can find me on my website, if you want to book a reading or coaching. I also do candle magic. So And I also have a newsletter to keep them up to date of what I'm doing and whatnot in special discounts. So that's kind of how you connect with me. And I spend most of my time on in that realm. 

Dayna Schmidt-Johnson
Perfect. We will track you down and follow, follow, follow. And then we will see you in September in the Writual Society! Everyone be sure to join us for All About Oracle in September. We'll see you then Leah. Thanks so much.

Leah Arnold-Smeets
Thank you and I can't wait see you all soon. Bye.

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