Name: Bakara Wintner
What do you do? I am a tarot card reader and healer.
What does that mean exactly?
"The best description I’ve ever heard of what I do is a kind of cosmic mapmaker. A person will come with a question, or an area of life they want to look at, and the cards lay out the highest possible course of action and outcome that is available to them at that time."
The tarot is a deck of 78 cards and within those cards the human experience is captured though the images and archetypes. When a client comes for a reading, the cards they pull will reflect the experience they are having in that moment. From there, we can delve deeper into that experience and outline courses of action that will serve their highest and best interests.
What are you passionate about?
Interesting question. I guess I’m passionate about a lot of things, which I believe healers have to be in order to truly be of service to others. I’m passionate about making this world a more peaceful and less destructive place. I’m passionate about animal rights and showing mercy to those weaker than us. I’m passionate about the fact that everyone has within them a divine spark that makes them powerful, creative, and impactful beyond what we are taught to believe is possible. I’m passionate that magic is real and spreading that truth to as many people as possible as a form of empowerment. I’m passionate about sacred space, as I believe people are less likely to do their work in a chaotic or toxic environment. I’m passionate about people doing their best, whatever that means for them in any given moment.
"Because to live a life without passion is to essentially be dead."
Do you have a mantra?
It’s interesting, the first two years of building my business was nonstop movement, and it was such a blessing. I felt so met and seen in everything that I did, whether it was offering individual readings, events, teaching classes, putting out merchandise, or giving interviews, there was a natural momentum to it all that felt very reassuring and rewarding. I think I needed that, because I was so afraid that when I started reading tarot it would somehow collapse in on itself. I simply believed it impossible that someone could do something that they loved so much and make a living doing it. So I said yes, to everything. It got to a point where I had overwhelmed and overcommitted myself at the expense of my own self care and time. Now, I have more trust in what has been created. So my mantra lately has been Netflix & chill. I’m working on some pretty major projects this year, but I want it all to have a calm, settled, chill energy to it. Not the most high-minded mantra, but it’s been working.
Favorite health routine, habit or go-to:
The idea that has helped me the most is that the universe is rigged in our favor.
"If we take a risk, or move towards something that is aligned with our highest and best interests, chances are we will see success. If we are trying to do our life’s work, and fulfill our intended contribution to this world, there is a distinct ease and flow to life."
So whenever I am faced with a major choice, or risk, I cannot help but think that it will probably work out. Even if I seemingly have no idea what I’m doing. After taking that first big risk -- for me, it was quitting my job to read tarot full-time -- and seeing it work out the rest seem easier and more intuitive to say yes to.
What one or few thing(s) have most improved your quality of life? I don’t think there is anything a walk in the woods cannot fix. My go-to when I feel overwhelmed or uncertain is to get into nature. We’ve recently moved out of Brooklyn to Durham, North Carolina. So access to the woods is more readily available here. To be in the presence of old trees, wild animals, and undisrupted land completely changes my energy. I rarely make a major decision without a trip to the woods first.
What matters most to you these days?
Lately, it is my home. We bought a house when we moved, and I’ve poured my heart and soul into making it perfect. I grew up in a very chaotic and violent home, so there is deep healing in cultivating a space that is sacred and light and beautiful and peaceful.
What have you learned recently that you’d like to apply to your life?
I don’t know if I’ve learned this recently, but what I’m constantly trying to do is listen to my body more. I spend so much time in my head, and the mind has the power to override the body if we let it. I’m working on dropping the energy from my head down into my body and listening to its impulses more.
What do you know that you wish more people did as well?
"I wish more people were aware of how much they matter. How deeply their choices impact the lives of others. That if they play it small in life, they are not just hurting themselves by doing so. Each person has the potential to create positive change and forward movement in the world, and when they say yes to that, other people will be better for it as well."
What do you wish you knew more about?
So many things. I’m very interested in Native American healing practices, as well as Voodoo and Santeria. However, these forms of magic are deeply connected to culture, and I have always felt like you need permission, or an invitation, to study them. So I am not in any rush, but if and when a door opens to any of them I will pursue it.