by Tracy Moore
While there is a lot of information out there about the history of the cards, this article isn't about that. It is simply my opinion and my experience with the Tarot. First I would like to deal with where the information in a Tarot reading comes from. It is a combination of Universal intelligence/energy, paired with our own intuition. For some of you that might sound a little vague, so I'll try to explain. It is my belief that there is a universal energy to which all things are connected, everything from trees to rocks to animals to people. I do not see it as a thing or a person, but as collective consciousness and knowledge which is available to tap into. To try to pin down exactly what this means is murky water. For thousands of years humans have been trying to put a label or face on it, and it has caused so much turbulence in our world. Maybe someday we will fully know all the details, but until then I choose to simply accept it as something which just is.
Do I believe in deities? Yes, but I do not believe that the information in a reading comes from a deity. Do I believe that we can see into the past and future with the Tarot? Technically yes, because the information does spring from collective consciousness along with our own intuition (which is basically us tapping into the collective consciousness). Do I believe that we can speak to the dead with the Tarot? No. I do believe that we can ask a question about a deceased loved one, but not actually talk to them. It isn't like a Ouija board.
For divination, the images and the meanings behind them are a way to look into the issues in our lives. The cards can help us to see how things from our past may be affecting our present and even have ramifications into our future. Then we can take those issues and work on them to bring our lives into a more harmonious balance. It's important to remember that we always have choice and free will. A Tarot reading should never be presented as an absolute. The reading is a heads up into what is around the corner, and allows us to prepare for it and decide how we wish to proceed. It isn't telling us how things have to be. Here is an example:
Let's say that your reading indicates that you will have angry words with someone which may result in the end of the relationship. Does that mean that it HAS to happen? No, it does not. It means that the situation will present itself, but here is where your ability to choose comes in. Do you engage in an argument or find another way to deal with the situation? Is this relationship a healthy one which you should be holding onto in the first place?
Spiritual exploration is another aspect of Tarot which ties back to the same concept of Universal energy. When we examine the cards, we have an opportunity to see areas in which we need to do some work in order to grow as spiritual beings. We can look at problematic themes as ways in which we need to change our thinking or reactions. Time for another example:
You've been feeling as though everything in your life is going wrong; emotionally, physically, financially, and you want to know if it will improve. The reading indicates a lot of turmoil. Do you to take this to mean that you are just doomed to misery or do you look for a way to change things? Look at what energy you are projecting out into the universe and why. Look at the type of people you are surrounding yourself with. A lack of anything often starts with a lack of genuine love and respect for ourselves, which leads to projection of negative energy. This must be taken care of before we can expect to see changes. It is true that we attract what we project, and this too is a choice. No one said it would be easy.
Okay, now that I've explained how I think that the Tarot works, I would like to walk you through how I do a reading. For at least a few moments, I still myself and internally ask that the cards show me what needs to be known. Then, I shuffle the cards with a question or purpose in mind and keep shuffling until I feel a tingle in my fingers. After I have selected the cards I look at the images on them and see what pops to mind or if I get a feeling about it. Then, I look at the standardized meaning for the card and combine it all into a complete picture for the issue at hand.
Tarot is an individual thing in many ways, and a person needs to spend time finding out which way works best for them. Some people shuffle a certain number of times. Others spread the cards out in front of them, move them around, and push them into a pile. There are as many ways to do this as there are people.
My biggest piece of advice to anyone on the receiving end of a reading is that if the person doing the reading for you tries to make it seem as though you have no choice in the matter, run the other way. Also, if the person tells you that there is something that they can do to ensure that things are going to be okay for you (for a fee, of course), run the other way. With all things spiritual, it should be about enlightenment and growth. Not fear or control.
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