Tarot Card Readings – Find out what your future has in store for you
Wondering what your future has in store for you? A tarot card reading will help you discover the good and bad in your life to come
Tarot reading is the practice of using a special pack of playing cards to help us make better decisions about the future. It is an ancient practice going back centuries and forms an important part in the folklore of many countries around the world. It is a fascinating and useful exercise but is often misunderstood and dismissed as an occult and superstitious activity. Here we cut through the misconceptions and explain exactly what tarot reading is and how it can benefit your life.
What are Tarot Cards?
They are playing cards dating back to the 14th century and were used for playing card games in Italy and France, though they are believed to have originated earlier in Egypt. A pack of tarot cards consists of 74 pictured cards and like cards today, have 4 suits. Unlike conventional playing cards, however, tarot cards feature pictograms which represent and idea or an archetypal character.
The Cards and the Archana
There is no standard tarot deck and they vary from epoch to epoch and from country to county. The most commonly used deck in the USA, however, is the Rider-Waite deck, introduced in 1909. It has 4 suits, but features 4 minor “Archana” instead of the standard hearts, spades, clubs and diamonds. The different minor Archana take pictorial form and represent (typically minor) issues encountered in daily life. A tarot deck also features major Archana, which represent wider concepts and ideas that underpin the shorter term minor Archana. The relationship between the major and minor Archana and their respective concepts is of great significance in tarot reading.
There are far too many cards to list the full range of meanings so we list just a few here. For a greater understanding on all the Archana meanings, please click here
Death: Ending; Transition; Elimination; Inexorable forces
The Fool: Beginning; Spontaneity; Faith; Apparent folly
The High Priestess: Inaction; Unconscious awareness; Potential; Mystery
The Lovers: Relationship; Sexuality; Personal beliefs; Values
The Magician: Action; Conscious awareness; Concentration; Power
How are the Cards Used?
There are various interpretations based on which cards appear and in what order. For example, if a major Archana appears and is followed by the same minor Archana card, that concept or issue is becoming less significant in your life. Positioning of the cards on the table is important and are commonly placed in a Celtic cross shape, starting at one card then moving on to the next with the sequence of the cards providing insight into your situation.
How are Tarot Cards used?
A better way to answer this question is to first explain how they are not used. The popular idea of tarot reading involves a gypsy women turning over cards on a table to reveal future events to the person involved. Predictions are given and presented as future events that will definitely happen, and they usually feature some sort of vague and ominous warning, if not outright doom. This perception is created by Hollywood movies and has little in common with how tarot readings are usually conducted.
A tarot reading is not to predict the future, but to connect the individual concerned with his or her inner self and gain a greater understanding of life both now and how it will develop in the future. This means connecting the conscience with the sub-conscience and encouraging the individual to consider all the elements affecting your life. Instead of making predictions, Tarot is used to provide clarity in regard to personal events and issues, and to encourage the individual to consider parts of their personality that are being neglected. It allows us to deal with troubling issues by providing objectivity. Tarot readers don’t pretend that it is a mystic art, but they maintain it is a useful vehicle to achieve self-empowerment and a better life.
Open readings involve the individual asking for advice on a general topic or idea, rather than a specific issue. It could be do with work, love or health. These open readings often coincide with the individual entering a new chapter in their life which is often accompanied by confusion, uncertainty and trepidation. Open readings are deigned to give clarity to these situations and to make changes easier to manage.
The form of tarot reading is “question reading” where you seek to address a specific issue or question in your life. It is an area that you want to improve or a problem you wish to resolve. The idea behind this kind of reading is to help you address the issue yourself by providing clarity of thought. You put your question to the tarot reader who will reveal cards to provide insight on your question.
Tips for Question Readings
- It is important to approach this kind of tarot reading with an open mind because if you have preconceived ideas about it and are only looking those to be reinforced by the reading, you are wasting your time.
- It is important to be unbiased. Do not frame the question so as to “beg the question” or make it a leading question. Be neutral in your question and ask it in a way that an outsider observer would see it. For example if you are having problems with a parent who is overly demanding, do not ask “how can I get my mother to leave me alone?” but instead ask “how can I achieve a better relationship with my mother that maintains my independence but also respects her needs?”
- Be positive about your question instead of being negative. If you want something to happen that hasn’t happened yet, like love or the job you want, then ask how to make it happen rather than asking why it hasn’t
Tarot is dismissed by many as of the occult or a pointless exercise in predicting the future. Such a position indicates little knowledge of its real purpose, which is to help us recognize what is happening in our lives and see things that are happening to us but we don’t understand. Tarot is a way of using symbols to relate to the real world and make connections to what is real, with results that are practical in real life. Such divination techniques are supported by mainstream psychologists like Carl Jung, who considered similar techniques (he didn’t study tarot but other divinations) to be a guide in recognizing seemingly unrelated events as, in fact, related. Whether we believe this psychological principle to be true or not, tarot is undoubtedly an effective way of considering ideas previously closed to you – and in that there is practical value in applying this to daily life both in the long and short term.