Ghost Month advice from Instagram tarot readers + healers

Growing up in the Philippines means you grew up somehow superstitious. We believe sleeping with our hair wet makes us insane, tabi-tabi po is key to keep the nearby dwende calm, and jumping during New Year’s can make us taller. If I didn’t grow up here, maybe I’d dismiss these completely. But coincidental stories from our friends and family prove these that they just might be on to something with these arcane beliefs.”

So as a semi-superstitious person, I knew I had to prepare for August’s Ghost Month.

“Don’t try to make a spectacle out of Ghost Month practices. Let’s be respectful to other cultures, beliefs, and also to the ghosts.”

Mercury in retrograde is something I’m aware of. But Ghost Month? Call me Cher, ‘cause I’m clueless. From what I learned from Google, it stems from Taoist and Buddhist beliefs where restless spirits roam the living world to wreak havoc. So for Taoists, Buddhists, and New Age folk alike, ghosts make August a month of drama and generally, bad luck.

Read more: Why we’re obsessed with astrology and the occult

Great, now we’re all aware of what the Ghost Month is. But what do we need to keep these ghosts chill? What are the basic dos and don’ts?

With young astrologers and tarot readers going public on Instagram, I decided this is the perfect time to know more about them and also to ask for their advice. Here are their thoughts on Ghost Month and how we can survive it.

Don’t be too salty to your kinfolk

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SYNCHRONICITY // I am a huge believer in divine timing and synchronicity. For weeks Spirit has sent images on my Instagram feed of Big Sur and I felt that’s where my Tribe and I should spend the day to rejuvenate ourselves from the spiritual healing work we do in our hometown. The location was so beautiful and quiet, about not your typical overcrowded Californian beach. Spirit wanted us to be there. Spirit wanted us to perform our baptism in those waters. The pilgrimaged itself was very Santeria-based. The Orishas made themselves known for every step on our way to the location. Oshún made herself known by sending us oranges at the crossroads and butterflies and bees flying around us. The first offering was made at the entrance for Elegguá. He shown himself to us as a small child waiting for his 3 pennies, sweet fruits and candies before we took further steps. The second offering was made to my mother Oshún at the river. We offered her 5 pennies, oranges, and delicious honey to her flowing river. Next we walked for a mile down to the beach. The road was filled with angelica flowers and other botanicals. Angelica are symbols of healing, blessings, protection in herbal magic. We approached the beach and it was beautiful. We set up sacred space and dressed in all white. We made our offerings of 7 pennies and a watermelon to Yemayá, then proceeded with the baptism ceremony that my tribe sister performed. I spent more time in the ocean by myself. I felt her crashing waves cleanse me of everything I was carrying that aren’t mine. Surprisingly Pacific Ocean waters didn’t felt freezing at all! I sang her waters “Kai kai kai Yemaya Olodo, Kai kai kai Assessu Olodo!” Renew I felt. We spent most of our remaining time in the beach in meditation, healing, and laughter. The journey ended with Elegguá as he shown himself as an older man with a cigar in his mouth. I’m forever grateful for my tribe, the Orishas, and this experience that Spirit lead us to. Follow the signs that Spirit shows you because it’s always leading you on the right path. Ancestors, guides, angels, and deities will make themselves known. Leave offerings of gratitude for every major step on your journey.

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Here’s some advice from Stockholm, California’s resident spiritual healer, Sean Agcaoili (@holisticalchemy). He might not be a Taoist or a Buddhist, but he believes this month is a time to elevate souls, especially our ancestors who didn’t live a good life on Earth. That’s why he wants us to not only remember our dead loved ones, but also to forgive our living relatives and friends.

“Give your ancestors love, and they will find peace. Forgive and love your friends and family, so we can clarify anything that may hold us back when we die, so we can be at peace in the afterlife,” he tells us. That’s the tea folks, keep your calm and maybe don’t do callout threads this month.

Respect Ghost Month practices

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Today's Reading: Seven of Cups . So I asked my deck to give a message to those of you following this account, and as a result, I learned a lot more about all of you. ❤ . This card tells me that you're big dreamers, with creativity that's sky-high and a great sense of humor. 😊 . Today's message for yourselves is: dream it, then do it! It's fun to dream, but if you want those dreams to be your reality, then it's time to werk werk werk! You can do it, so long as you put your effort into it. If some confusion or uncertainties come up, just know that that's part of the process – let your creativity see you through, and don't forget to always laugh, even in tough times. . Let me know if this message resonates with you! 💌✨ . Deck: Legend of the Arthurian Tarot

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Mic (@_tahrot) made an Instagram account to help people learn, heal, and grow through tarot card readings. “I’ve been both a healer and teacher by profession, and I’m now translating those experiences and desires into my tarot readings.”

Be mindful of the offerings given to them, and don’t try to make a spectacle out of Ghost Month practices. Let’s be respectful to other cultures, beliefs, and also to the ghosts,” Mic reminds everybody. Whether you believe this practice or not, let this be a reminder that this month is a part of Taoism and Buddhism. It’s not merely superstition—it’s a religious practice. 

Avoid…. maybe everything

Since 2016, Master Dylan (@divineoracle.ph) has been doing tarot readings. That’s why when I asked what Ghost Month advice he has for us, he didn’t give us just one. He gave us a literal list. “Since the ghosts are roaming around the streets and the energy is at its lowest vibration, businesses and our emotional imbalances may be affected,” he warns us about this month.

“Listen to your body and your energy levels, and protect your energy accordingly.”

He also warned us to be extra cautious while driving, watch over our young siblings, and to postpone medical procedures if we can. His list also includes swimming, new activities or dangerous sports, talking about spirits and ghosts, getting married, repairs and construction, starting a business or signing a contract, killing insects, emotional instability, and air or sea travel.

Yikes! Looks like August will be a hell of a month. On combating the bad vibes, he tells us to wear amulets and charms if we can. Clutch on your crystals tightly and anting-antings, y’all!

Keep your chill at bay

Ria (@tarotadviceph) is a freelance illustrator by day and a tarot card reader on the side. “I’ve been a self-taught tarot reader since January 2019, a hobby I acquired since I often had readings done by others before,” she tells us. Unlike other astrologers and tarot readers on this list, she sees Ghost Month more as a rest period, rather than a cursed month.

“It’s believed in Chinese culture that it’s bad luck to make any risky moves in businesses or lifestyle during this month. Also, spirits are a bit more active at this time,” she informs us. “So try to not let stress or bad vibes get the best of you this month! It could attract spirits, especially negative beings. This is a good month to take a break and reflect.”

Self-care is key to Ghost Month

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Mid-week message: The Chariot + Justice. The goal for our hobbies and passions is for them to be sustainably integrated in our lives; that is, for us to wake up and do them as part of our natural flow, not because they feel like a chore. It's always exciting to start something new, but ask yourself how you can start doing the thing in the simplest way, with the only "strain" being actually getting up to do it. Also, ask how much energy you can realistically put into the thing in the beginning, all your commitments considered. No one is stopping you from running a full marathon, but maybe it's not the best introduction to running. Even though we feel like we want to, there's no need to put in 100% at the beginning when you can only put in 5%. You have your own pace and natural rhythm that you can honor. What's important is that you decide to do it, and then you begin. . That's a nice message to start this page as well 🌻

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Since this is believed to be a resting period, Leni (@tarotbyleni), a self-employed fashion designer/tarot cared reader believes this is a perfect time to practice self-care more. “For me, it’s just a time where things from all fronts naturally tend to slow down, so it’s a time to take a break and slow down as well,” she says.

She wants us to consider listening to our body more and to be mindful of our energy. “Keep it chill, and try not to worry if things seem to lose momentum. Listen to your body and your energy levels, and protect your energy accordingly.” If you’re considering taking a break, Ghost Month is the time to finally do it. 

Art by Renz Mart Reyes

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