For those of you not lucky enough to have been immersed in the beauty and magic of the Tarot since you can remember, here is a brief introduction to this powerful tool for spiritual growth and transformation.
The Tarot is a deck of 78 cards used for divination. By divination, I mean a way of accessing your inner divine, of revealing to your conscious mind the aspects of your subconscious and unconscious self that have not been made fully evident yet. We are complex and multilayered beings, and the Tarot is just one mechanism to seek alignment amongst all aspects of ourselves. I prefer the definition of divination that says it is “to be inspired by a god” than the one that claims it is “to foresee, to foretell, to predict, to prophesy”… although very often the Tarot predicts with uncanny accuracy what is yet to come – because a part of you already knew and allowed it to reveal its knowledge through the cards.
Back to the cards: there are 78 of them, 22 in the major arcana and the rest in the minor arcana which is divided in 4 elements: pentacles, swords, wands, and cups. These cards are like individual letters that together form words, and then sentences and paragraphs, with their meaning shifting depending on how they are relating to each other.
It’s called “reading” the Tarot for a reason, the Tarot is an ancient (OK, maybe like 700 years, but that’s ancient enough) tool, and the entire 78 card “alphabet” represent some of the major and deepest symbols of human experience.
- Cups: water, emotions, the west, relationships, connections, love.
- Wands: fire, passion, the south, energy, enthusiasm, inspiration.
- Pentacles: earth, work, the north, material plane, finances, money.
- Swords: air, thoughts, the east, intellect, ideas, plans.
Each of these suits have cards numbered 1 to 10, each with a meaning that could have books written about (and many have been, by all means study this amazing tool), and 4 Court Cards: Princess or Page, Prince or Knight, King, and Queen.
And, the major arcana has 22 cards that are a metaphorical journey through life, touching on the main big fat issues for humanity represented symbolically: love, fear, power, risk-taking, courage, fertility, spirituality, wholeness, temptation, addiction, balance, change, transformation, adventure, introspection, patience, wisdom, Mystery, beauty, abundance, action, determination, tradition, authority, surrender, justice, joy, kindness, hope, faith…you get the idea. All the Big Ones.
The querent comes to the tarot with an issue, question, or concern, the reader uses whatever systems suits them to “randomize” the choosing of the cards, perfectly aware that nothing is random and there are no accidents. Then, the “randomly” chosen cards are placed in a pattern out of many to choose from, or made up by the reader according to their own internal guidance system and intuition for divination.
At this point the reader begins, well, reading – that is, interpreting each individual card for its own meaning, in relationship to each other, and also to the their spot on the spread, and the querent’s mouth drops open because they can’t believe how accurately the interpretation of the cards fits their current situation or how precisely the reader is verbalizing their feelings, when in reality they just showed up with a willingness to learn and grow and be helped and that is exactly what happened in the session.
It is really a nifty little witchy tool, if you’re curious by all means hit me up for a reading at https://brujaschool.com/tarot/
See you soon!