8 Ways to Spot a Psychic Fraud

One thing that blows me up like a Supernova–and makes honest readers across the universe cringe–is the scam artist, the bullshit Tarot Reader (or psychic, or astrologer, or whatever). Because so much of what we do isn’t easy to quantify, because people seek readings in times of stress or uncertainty, the fields draw plenty of neer-do-wells looking to cash in on somebody else’s pain. That is some ugly karma, right there.

So to everyone who consults readers, psychics and other spiritual advisers, please know the signs of being taken for a ride so you can hop off!

Do not trust a reader who…

  • Promises  100%, TOTAL ACCURACY/ PERFECT TIMELINES!!! Readers are HUMAN beings, period. Nobody is perfect. You and everyone else you know has FREE WILL. The future is always in motion and we each have options about how we live it. That’s the point of consulting spirit, you know?
  • Tells you how glow-in-the-dark-HOLY-SPECIAL-GIFTED YOU ARE!!! Flattery gives  a buzz, and I’m sure you’re totally awesome and super-spiritual, really! Your aura may shine into the next state for all I know. But too much is too much. It’s sort of like the smarmy guy in the bar. You know he says, “You have the most beautiful eyes I’ve ever seen!” to all the chicks, but you kind of want to believe he really means it this time…He doesn’t.
  • Tells you what a WONDERFUL/INSTANT/FATED CONNECTION they feel with you!!! This is a variation of the glow-in-the-dark-holy-special ruse.
  • Has “VERY IMPORTANT/TIME-SENSITIVE NEWS” just for YOU!!! Doesn’t matter about what. Whether it’s lotto numbers or impending doom dangled as bait, the objective is getting the hook into you!
  • Diagnoses a CURSE, BAD KARMA/A DEMON/MALEFIC ENTITIES/HOLES IN YOUR AURA/BLOCKED CHAKRAS/GENERIC METAPHYSICAL ILL…that the reader happens to specialize in clearing!!! (For a hefty fee.) Just to be clear: I actually BELIEVE in magic, spirits, charkas, the whole shebang. And people can, indeed, have problems as a result of energetic imbalances. But if you’ve purchased a reading, you’ve ALREADY paid for assistance. This reader isn’t a professional selling spiritual services; this is a con artist selling fear. Run!
  • Aggressively PURSUES YOU FOR MORE READINGS!!! I’m not talking about signing up to an email list to get notice of reading specials. I’m talking about getting hounded with requests for setting up appointments. Ethical readers look to empower YOU to direct your own life more succesfully. Con artists look to foster dependency.
  • Tells you to KEEP YOUR READING SECRET!!! Your reading belongs to YOU. Whom and what you share from your reading is your business. If you’re being told not to share, there is a reason and the reason isn’t going to be about protecting your interests.
  • Says they are the ONLY ONE WHO CAN HELP!!! Spiritual gifts are by grace. We ALL have psychic and intuitive potential. Good readers develop skills through study and hard work, and deserve to earn from their services if they choose. But by no means does ANY reader possess something no one else can access. Anyone who claims otherwise is either very confused or very dishonest–neither especially desirable traits in a spiritual counselor.

Sometimes people confuse a reader’s ability to get hits–accurate information–as proof the reader is “genuine.” Unfortunately, that’s not going to protect you. Some frauds are masters of cold reading, making it seem like they know all about you when they don’t, while others may actually be able to access psychic information–anyone can learn–but use that information unethically. Free will is always a factor. Not everyone is getting their info directly from your guardian angels and guides, man.

The very best way to protect yourself from psychic frauds (and a whole lot more) is really very simple: TAKE RESPONSIBILITY for your own life. Trust your inner voice and walk away as soon as you feel uncomfortable! Never, ever, ever give away your power–to someone calling themselves a psychic, a minister, a medium, a friend, a spouse or your mother. Never, ever, ever rely on someone else to make your decisions, live your life, or call the shots for you. That’s your job. Readers can be a huge help for those seeking clarity, insight, perspective and assistance in making informed choices. But a reader who is willing to make your decisions is not a reader who has your best interests at heart.

Be smart. Even if you’re given solid insight from a reader, always look for your own confirmation, always do a gut-check, and never accept as truth anything that doesn’t ring true for you. Keep your power intact and readings can be a powerful tool!

Do you have any to add?

About the Author: Dixie Vogel is a Tarot Reader and Spiritual Counselor who focuses on empowering her clients to regain control of their own lives. This article, 8 Ways to Spot a Psychic Fraud, was originally published on Dixie’s website, A Fool’s Journey.

This article is presented as a public service under a Creative Commons Attribution License. Reprints of this article are permissible as long as the “About the Author” credit and links to the original content remain intact. Please feel free to share it. Thank you!

Negative Predictions in Readings

This is a psychic readers’ rant: I can say 200 helpful, positive and optimistic things in a reading. But if I have ONE iffy, even remotely negative thing to say, guess which one reverberates loudest? Guess which one people unfailingly zero in on, over and over again?

I am SO not doing this gig to trump up y’all’s anxiety, man. But I also give you exactly what I get. That’s the deal I made with my invisible friends who help me.

“Give me what I’m supposed to share, give me what’s in the highest and best good for this person to know at this juncture.”

Usually they will give me what I ask or related, sometimes something else if it’s especially important. Sometimes, that’s exactly what you want to hear but other times, it’s not.

Now, it is completely and utterly more pleasant to be able to tell you what you want to hear. And most of the time, I know exactly what that is. (Side effect of being psychic.)  But I don’t hold out on y’all because I don’t want to deliver bad news!  I don’t pick and choose what I give you, or spin it down three notches to take the punch out of it. I don’t want to be in the position of making those calls myself, with my everyday Muggle version of wisdom and sunshine-and-roses biases.

Every life has ups and downs. Some lives have a lot more of one or the other. Regardless of what cycle you’re in, if you call upon me to be the messenger, I’ll do my best to deliver the message with integrity.

I’m not a sugar-coating reader. I’m an OPTIMISTIC reader sure, but there is a big difference. If I’m feeling heavy, difficult and hard-to-navigate vibes, that’s exactly what I convey (along with genuine sorrow over the fact).  The validation of hearing the truth is a lot more powerful than any phoney-baloney “It’s all grand starting tomorrow, ain’t it?” BS when it doesn’t ring true.

I do find profound  reason for optimism in life, and in the amazing human spirit! Y’all inspire me and educate me and lift me up with your strength, perseverance and ingenuity, even under difficult circumstance. But sometimes, you all can also drive me crazy. Har! That happens when people hear only one side of the story. It can be just the positive bits, but far more often, it’s what’s perceived as negative. Big picture, it may not actually be negative but either way, the outcome is the same.

Thing is, besides truth, I also look for the exit doors. I actively seek out ways to short-circuit strife, make painful periods easier, quicker  and more constructive for you. There is no reason to suffer without cause! Surgery can hurt but it should ultimately become healing, you know? Healing! That’s what I’m looking to help with.

So don’t come to me if  you “don’t want to hear anything bad.” Also, don’t come to me if you are only ready to hear the bad! Please take what I have to say with exactly the weight I give it, and more importantly compare it to what your intuition tells you. I am good at what I do for sure, but human as the next pink-haired psychic chick. 

Just don’t pile on a ton of fears on top, decide I’m “being nice” and turn it into doomsday. Fears are not the same as intuition. Fears block intuition. Fears create cages; intuition creates doors.

I am here to serve. Take advantage of what I’m trying to provide: tools for living better, truer, and more in tune with your own spirit. Compare what I offer to what your inner voice has been telling you, and you’ll have a powerful means of moving forward in your life.

Do you tend to get worked up over specific predictions in readings?

Dream Interpretation with Tarot?

Both Tarot and Dreams reveal symbolic, inner landscapes

Working with the cards and working with dreams share great similarity–understanding metaphor and allegory, noting and interpreting the little details that jump out unbidden, and a solid connection to the ethereal are your greatest allies. Both dreamwork and Tarot are powerful avenues to insight and hidden truth.

Comfort with wordplay, thinking outside the box, and an solid eye for symbolism make your work much easier, with either Tarot or  dreams. Work in one realm enhances the other. So bear that in mind when you’re looking to grow your skills in either arena.

That being the case, I’m exceptionally comfortable working in the language of dreams. As I’m sometimes asked for dream interpretation in the course of Tarot consultation (and have had great feedback), I’m officially adding dream interpretation to the services offered.

Recurring or psychic dreams–often especially vivid and striking–are great candidates for dream interpretation.

Expect a 3-5 card spread (or a few more as required to get to the meaning), a full explanation of everything I get for psychically for you,  and of course my famous “take-home message” card to put it all in perspective. Dream Readings are currently priced $25.

I’m looking forward to helping you decode the mysteries of your unconscious! Request a Dream Reading.

Do you do dreamwork?

06/01/12: Why I Don’t Judge…


“I feel no judgment coming from you.” That’s a comment I get frequently from clients, and they’re absolutely right. I may not agree with particular choices, and I absolutely will cringe if I see a person suffering because of their choices, but I will NOT judge an individual’s worth based on those choices. There’s good reason.

Judgment is ruled by Pluto. Coming right between the Sun and The World, it calls for an accounting, when the score is tallied and the bill is due. Inverted, t’s not a question that we, personally need to judge.

I am well acquainted with judgment, mostly because I grew up immersed! From the outside world, I felt judged for my family’s separatist, apocalyptic religious beliefs. From my family, I felt judged for my decision to abandon said religious beliefs. At times, I’ve judged myself as lacking for my inability to reconcile the two. So it’s a concept with which I’m intimately familiar, many years on a first-name basis.

Here’s the thing: while I advise my clients, give them whatever insight and feedback I can yank out of the ether and personal experience, I do NOT make another’s decisions for them.

I paid very dearly to be in charge of my own life, losing relationships with people I love in the process. My experience has left me to see self-determination as SACRED, a responsibility more than a right.

I don’t need anybody else’s Karma, man! I’ve got my hands full with my own. And I have no idea what path someone else is on, or why they are the way they are. Maybe it’s their lessons. Maybe they volunteered to come down here and be a massive ass to serve as a teacher. (God knows I’ve learned a lot from that crowd. Haven’t you?) Maybe it’s leading up to something bigger.

I don’t need judgment. I don’t need to project my own right or wrong on anyone else. If I don’t like someone’s behavior, energy, or choices, if I find it bothersome or upsetting or disruptive, I extract it from my life to the fullest of my capacity.

Sure, I may speak out about values I hold dear, or try to counter ugliness and cruelty with kindness and love when the opportunity presents. I will detach in a New York minute from anyone or anything that creates unnecessary pain and drama in my life. That’s my right! But I do not need to condemn the person behaving that way anymore. It’s not my right and not my responsibility. I have faith, ALL energy goes exactly where it needs to go. My job is to direct my own for the greatest good.

How do you feel about judging others?

Shadowscapes Tarot
by Stephanie Pui-Mun Law

Schedule a Tarot consultation with Dixie.

What about Tarot Rituals?

I use rituals  for preparing for a reading. They vary depending on opportunity and mood, but I do some form for any reading. I like to take a couple minutes and clear my mind. Take slow, deep breaths and center. I rub my hands with some of my “Psychic Oil” I made under the full moon in Pisces (and recharged under the full moon in Scorpio). I light incense or put essential oil in a burner. I hold a quartz crystal and say a prayer.

And then I start reading.

This sounds like a lot of trouble, but it’s not, really. I like all that stuff; that’s part of why it’s helpful.

I drew a card for insight into improving your readings, and we got the Two of Swords—you have decisions to make, after all. Two’s indicate a need to balance; this card is associated with Moon in Libra. Effectively reading for others requires you to keep emotional (moon) balance (Libra), keeping your own energy tidy. Rituals are one way to help do that.

By relaxing, creating a pleasant atmosphere and clearing your mind, you put yourself in a state primed to receive intuitive insight. You’re calm and centered. That’s when your radar’s best. You’re focused and present, ready to give full attention to the reading at hand.

And the symbolism is helpful. Crystals and physical objects pick up the vibrations when you use them. You’re creating a shortcut to get to the right frame of mind. By focusing on the energy you want to create, you increase your awareness and experience of it.  It’s a basic form of magic work.

In order for rituals to be effective, though, they have to resonate with you, being consistent with your intent in the reading.  There’s energy contained in the act of consideration, creation and execution. The more personally meaningful to you, the more energy. You can copy someone else’s ideas if it resonates, but most of the time altering to fit in with your frame of reference and belief system makes the ritual or symbol more powerful.

Do you use rituals in your Tarot or astrology work?

Helping Your Reader: Breathe

Readings = energetic fraternization. It’s you, your reader, and the universal ether-net all mixing it up. Auric dance party! So…it’s not just about the reader. The energy YOU bring to the table is pivotal for quality of reading you will get.

Now, I know many times, people come for readings when they are worried, upset, confused or just bothered. Strong emotion is often part of it, and I totally get this. I’m fine with it. But realize that once you’ve secured yourself a reading, it’s time to step back a bit.

The number one, most important, most helpful thing you can do to help your reader is to BREATHE! Clear your head. GROUND.  Relax. Release. Step back. Stop freaking out. Take care of yourself, be kind to your body and your mind. Let go. Trust that all will be as it needs to be, and you’ll find the guidance you need to make the best decisions possible.

Yes, this really does help!

See, if it’s WWIII in your head, if sirens are blaring, if it’s an emotional disaster zone in there, it’s a LOT harder to hear anything above that din. It’s difficult to sort out what images are present in the situation versus what is generated in a fearful  imagination on overdrive. Like psychic static. (Not to mention, there’s an emotional “contact buzz” factor. I generally plug in to the questioner’s emotional state surrounding the question. So be kind to your reader by being kind to yourself.)

Breathe. It clears your mind and calms your heart.

Breathe. It grounds, bringing you to the present, out of past regrets or future fears.


Do you find this true of readings, too?