I was born in Canada. My mom emigrated here from Germany, and my dad from China. My Chinese name is Ho Yi-Sung, which he once translated as “Why not? Elegant pine.”
I’ve been working as a professional writer and editor for around 25 years, and I’ve published around 15 books. Visit oliverho.ca for information about that side of my life.
A few years ago, I started studying and practicing tarot and other methods of fortune-telling. It’s interesting to me. I expect to continue learning and practicing for the rest of my life.
I took classes with Camelia Elias and Enrique Enriquez, so in terms of specific tarot influences, they affect my readings the most. I believe my other influences come from studies and practice in writing, Taoism, zen, poetry and martial arts (mostly fencing, which I trained and competed in for more than 30 years).
I try to take a no-nonsense approach, and I don’t follow any particular belief system. I support your right to believe in anything you choose, just so long as that belief doesn’t cause harm to anyone.
I wrote a short essay in the book, 21+1: The Fortune-Teller’s Rules, which describes my current thoughts and approaches for tarot readings.
In general, I see the cards as “projection holders,” a term I read in Jung and Tarot: An Archetypal Journey by Sallie Nichols. I tend to read according to form and function, and I try to make as few references as possible to outside sources. I try to look for meanings and make interpretations based solely (or at least mostly) on the cards. This includes exploring how the visual elements relate to one another, and what they could mean in the context of a question.
When I read cards, I project meaning onto them, and I try to direct my projection according to a particular question and context (usually the circumstances around the person asking the question). I try to be transparent about how I’m interpreting the cards, and try to collaborate with the other person. I attempt to answer questions clearly and directly, and to emphasize practicality and choice. In an ideal situation, we work with one another to interpret the cards and answer a question in a way that’s meaningful for you.
My readings aim for balance, choice, clarity and concision. As much as I strive for grounded and plain language interpretations, I also look for opportunities to provide alternate interpretations, find interesting metaphors and make poetic statements. I use my own system, which has been influenced by various existing systems and traditions, and which strives for internal consistency and logic. Here are my disclaimers and ethics.
In this blog, I’m aiming to post at least one reading per week. I do private readings via email and occasionally in-person. Use the contact page on this site to get in touch.