As well as giving insight into the future, a good tarot reading can help us prepare for ups and downs by shining a light on any obstacles in our path. While those stumbling blocks may be external, the greatest source of resistance often comes from within. This is where the symbolic language of the Tarot can help the most, by speaking to our hidden motivations and our fears. By shining a light on our subconscious, we dissolve its power over us.
In the words of the renowned psychotherapist Carl Jung, “Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate.”
Tarot brings our fears and beliefs into the light, where they lose their power. The potential for healing comes about thanks to the symbolism in the cards, which makes it possible for us to recognize our personal circumstances in the reading. The laws of intent and vibration also ensure that we pull the right cards for the situation at hand. The only requirement is for the tarot reader to trust his or her connection with the cards and set the intention to channel accurate information. The first few cards in a reading often speak to the current situation (or to the recent past), confirming the validity of the reading. This is true whether we read for ourselves or for someone else, though the relevance is more apparent when we read for someone else without knowing their circumstances, leaving no room for personal bias.
Learning to Read Tarot for Yourself
Booking a session with a professional Tarot reader can provide much needed guidance, but learning to read the cards may be a sounder investment. While learning the meanings for 78 cards can be daunting at first, the effort will certainly pay out, and we can enjoy it as well!
We can learn the language of tarot by laying the cards out sequentially. Looking at the Minor Arcana, the four suits speak to different spheres of life. For example, a predominance of Pentacles in a reading indicates practical concerns, including financial stability, comfort and support. The suit of Wands is full of fire, speaking to our passion, ambition and inspiration or lack thereof. Emotionally charged situations are highlighted by the suit of Cups, whereas the suit of Swords reflects our ability to use logic, reason and objectivity to our advantage. For example, the Eight of Swords depicts a young woman standing by herself in a clearing, her arms behind her back and a blindfold over her eyes. She appears to be fenced in by a circle of swords, and it’s likely she feels lost or trapped. The reader isn’t blindfolded however, and he sees no threat on the horizon – if she removed her blindfold she could just walk away. This image, however frightening it seems to be, can free us from our own mental prisons.
While it is useful to learn the traditional meanings of the cards, as described in countless books, Tarot can be even more transformative if we create our own story arc for each of the four suits: pentacles, cups, wands and swords. This makes it possible for us to follow the hero’s journey through the world of emotions (cups) or intellect (swords), for example, developing a unique understanding of the cards. This approach was taken by Juliet Sharman-Burke and Liz Green, who draw on Greek mythology in The Mythic Tarot deck. The Major Arcana’s archetypes are illustrated with Greek gods and goddesses, bringing their energy to life with memorable personalities. For example, the sun god Apollo features in the Sun card; his bright energy encourages us to join him in the warm rays where our life can only flourish.
Each of the four suits are also adapted from Greek mythology. The Suit of Cups brings to life a romance between Eros, the Greek god of love, and a human woman. The Ace of Cups brings a rush of excitement as love enters her life. Two and Three of Cups signal the early stages when they are still living a whirlwind romance, followed by reality checks as they get to know each other on a deeper level and friction ensues. We are able to view the cards as an evolution of their relationship through the initial rush of energy, breakups, reconciliation and finally a commitment based on truth. This makes story arc makes it easier for us to relate to cards when they come up in readings; impersonal mirrors that shows us our own mistakes. If we allow ourselves to feel compassion for the cast of characters, that feeling will be extended to ourselves, giving us a chance to heal and release any limiting patterns.
Choosing Your Own Deck
The Rider Waite Tarot deck may be the most popular these days, and its structure has influenced so many of the ones we find in shops. It's four suit cards and the archetypes of the Major Arcana have been adapted creatively by dozens of authors, keeping the same basic themes. Choose the one you feel drawn to, especially where images and the cast of characters are concerned. Let the story come to life in your hands and turn to the booklet only after you have begun to familiarize yourself with the cards.
Can anyone learn to channel healing and shift their life in a new direction? Absolutely! This startling discovery led Regina Chouza to become an Accredited Healer, blogger and teacher. Her first book A Personal Guide to Self-Healing, Cancer & Love is available on Amazon. Join her weekly newsletter for insights on self-healing and spirituality here: https://gem.godaddy.com/signups/192890/join
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