She turned over the first card, and said to her customer, "You've lost your faith." The lady sitting across the table nodded, and began to pour out her story of false accusations, treachery and abuse at a local church on the South Shore of the Boston area. She was an evangelical Christian, and most evangelical Christians would not consider going ot a Tarot Reader at a Psychic Faire, but here she was pouring out her story to a Witch.
The Witch brought her to the Confessional Booth we were operating. The Psychic Reader knew we could help her. We did.
The Young man stood in line with his friends for a Dream Interpretation. He was dressed in the regalia of the season - full length black cape, and large chains with amulets around his neck. His long hair cascaded into the hood of the cape. He leaned upon a tall wooden staff.
We talked about what he believed, and he discovered I was a Christian. He was a Neo-Pagan of the eclectic variety, but then again most Neo-Pagans are these days. They draw their sources of practice and belief from any number of places which interest them. He and his friends were visiting Salem for the days coming up to Halloween. He believed that the unseen realm of spirits, gods and goddesses was benign, which meant that any spiritual experience must by necessity be beneficial. I'm not so sure he came to his conclusions, because he philosophically considered the consequences of his beliefs, or if he simply trusted his spiritual experiences, and thereby came to the conclusion that everything must be nice in that place he couldn't see.
"Do you do these dream interpretations also?" he asked as we were talking.
I was monitoring the line this time, as others were interpreting dreams inside the tents. "I do."
And we were off.
He began to share his dream. He and his friends were at Red Rocks, a natural amphitheater in Colorado. Over the hills behind him black helicopters appeared. Realizing that these helicopters were not friendly, he and his friends began to run. Some of his friends were wounded by the helicopter fire, and some even were killed. He and one other girl escaped into a cave, and hid out until it was safe.
As he finished his dream I responded with one simple sentence. "The unseen realm is not benign, it is often malignant."
His eyes opened wide. His silence lasted a moment, and then he said, "Wow, you're right."
We talked for 20 minutes longer about lies, deception, and oppression coming from spiritual beings. We talked about both lies and truth coming from beyond, and the necessity of listening to the right voices. These concepts were new to him. He had been convinced that the other side was all good.
I could have tried to convince through Bible verses that his philosophy was messed up. In our discussion before he asked if I interpreted dreams, I could have gone preachy on him. But this young man rejected the voice of scripture as a true guide for his life.
His dreams on the other hand - he believed his dreams, and he walked away with a world view a touch more biblical than he previously possessed. He took away a few Bible references which backed up this new philosophy as well.
"Can I get in touch with you if I ever return to Salem?" he asked.
"You bet. You're always welcome to hang out with us."