Instructor spotlight: an interview with MJ Bzdak on Tarot + embodiment

Today we interview a local Portland witch and instructor, MJ Bzdak on Tarot and embodiment! As MJ leads monthly gathering with Seagrape, we've loved diving into this subject so much we wanted to share. Read below to get to know MJ a little more and don't forget to scope the upcoming Tarot series below!


MONTHLY SERIES, held on the 3rd Sunday of every month. Click on each of the following workshops in the series for details or to register:

  • MJ, why is the practice of embodiment important? 
Because our bodies are wise. They are an amalgamation of experiences; ours, our ancestors and the collective’s. To connect with our bodies is to connect with more than ourselves because we are purely tuning in to the depth that we hold within, and how much we are connected to everything around us: what has come before, what is now, & what is shaping. 
Because our bodies are our homes. They carry us, and literally sustain us. They hold so much information and intuitive knowing. In embodiment practices, we have the opportunity to call on that power, grounding it, and deepening our relationship with it. 
Because there are so many opportunities to cut ourselves off from connection from our bodies from societal conditioning (we are regarded as machines meant to not pay attention to our needs/knowings/pacing under capitalism; parts of us are literally not ok under cis white supremacist patriarchal constructs). Let us act to shift that story. In order to embody & imagine a new world, we can no longer abandon ourselves. 
  • How does it relate to the wisdom of the tarot? 
The tarot speaks a lot to the journey. And to the knowing that we all have within us what we desire. Tarot recognizes that shit is hard; being in a body is hard, and doesn’t demonize it, but uses it as a tool for self reflection & transformation. As a mirror to reflect back the agency we have in our choices. Do we choose to look at this painful thing that we do, or that has been done to us, or do we look away? What are the tools that would support us in our process? It’s about honoring the process as being where so much of the juiciness of life resides. Engaging with the tarot in an embodied way opens up vast landscapes of personal knowledge & reflection. 
  • As an instructor, why do you feel passionate about imparting this knowledge?
I get excited, & feel deeply honored, to create & hold a container for folx to explore their relationship with the tarot cards, using their bodies as a ballast. It’s hard to create space for yourself to walk into a card. To ask it what guidance it has for you. To be open to receiving that guidance. To get playful and open. Our brains don’t want to believe this is possible. We are taught that this is not possible. In community, we can stretch into this reality, inviting in our unique experiences & relationships with the symbols that the tarot holds. 
  • In what aspects are we able to incorporate divination further in our physical lives?
Any way that you can invite your body into your divination practice, do it. Everyone’s practice & needs are different. The more you are able to connect with your individual needs, the more you can meet them, the more you can connect outside of yourself in alignment.  
Take that pause and be curious about what is happening in your body. Eventually you’ll create a lexicon for what these experiences mean. And if your body is telling you something--listen. Build that trust. Listen and respond. I can’t emphasize that enough. 
Continually ask yourself: What works for you? What parts of you are engaged when you are working with your tarot cards (or any other divination practice)? What would it feel like to check in with your body as you begin your practice, or begin your day, before even leaving your bed, asking what it might want to bring or what it needs or listening to what information it might have for you? 
  • Do you currently have a favorite tarot card?  
Currently I’m geeking out on the 6 of cups! I’m calling this in big time for Leo season: openness, gift, and play. Through simple pleasures & wonder. I love the feel and energy of this card. It’s the moving on from the dissolution and loss of the 5 of cups into the integration of the 6. I’m currently using Cristy C. Road’s Next World Tarot deck & love her explanation of the card: “the 6 of Cups is healing from trauma through accessing youthful joy that you may or may not know or remember…(it) wants you to define your sense of home…” 
I am a Hermit card through & through and often sit with and reside in the depth of shadow work and liminal space. I know the process of going in. My playful nature only peeks out when I feel safe and have space to open up into expansiveness. This is where all of my creative energy comes from. It’s hard to bring into my daily life! I call on this card to nurture my relationship to my curious little, anchoring my past with my present & future selves. To find what home means to me and nurture/move towards that space.

Want to dive even deeper with magical practices and an amazing community? We invite you to join our private Seagrape Babes online network! Engage with a gorgeous community of magical beings, get early access to spells and videos, and enjoy exclusive access to bonus monthly material. All participants will have one week of free engagement when signing up. To learn more click here.

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