Different Uses for Tarot
When most people who have no firsthand experience think of Tarot, they seem to think that all it can do is predict the future. When you know nothing about something, all you know is what you see in the media. And the media has been notorious at portraying it in a negative light and not as the beautiful, amazing thing that it is. Usually in movies it tends to be portrayed in a negative way, The reader pulls a card and Yikes, it's the Death card, eerie music plays and don't you know someone promptly dies on cue shortly afterwards.
It's no wonder that Tarot sometimes has such a bad reputation, as it is so often portrayed so negatively. And why I run into so many people too utterly scared to have a reading. People who think that if they do the cards will predict something awful that they will then somehow be unable to avoid. And that is my main purpose in writing this column every month to try to dispel some of this and show the true beauty that is Tarot.
There are a number of untrue things here:
- The Death card does NOT actually mean actual death in Tarot. This may come as a surprise to many but it is nevertheless the truth. In fact, there really ARE no negative cards, Tarot cards are designed to help us, to encourage us, to guide us, to help us live our best lives. The actual meaning of the Death card is pretty positive in reality. It is a useful card and shows a useful process in your life. The Death card, for me, would be talking about a situation like you unexpectedly lose your job. And as you start looking you suddenly first a new one with twice as much pay, that you love three times as much. All the card really means is an ending that needs to take place to clear the field for something better that is coming. It means something better for you is coming, but first you have to lose something to be open to it. But it's always a good thing as what is coming is better and had you not let go of where you were you could not arrive at the place to receive it,.
- When you do use the cards to predict the future, and that IS one of their many potential uses, the future that they do predict can be changed. Pretty well nothing the cards predict is unavoidable. If something in a reading shows you in a place in the future where you do not want to be, you can always (at any time) change paths and move towards a different future. The cards do not force anything to happen in the future. They do not set the future into one set path. The cards ONLY show one potential future among many, the one you are currently moving towards at the time the reading was done. The future is very flexible, We can always change paths at any time we choose, to head towards any future we want. In fact Tarot cards are an excellent tool to help us literally change the future--one of my very favourite uses for them.
- Tarot cards have many many other uses than to just predict the future. They have many uses both for the reader and for the querent (person whom the reading is being done for). The cards are almost limitless in what they can do.
Tarot can do so so much more than talk about the future. It can certainly talk about the past and the present as well. Readings on the past can be quite healing. If you are having trouble understanding something or letting something go, the cards can give you what you need to do that. Readings on the present are also very helpful and answer anything you need to know, from why you are unconsciously sabotaging your diet and how to stop doing it, to how you to gain the most pleasure in the moment...and anything in between. Readings can and should be healing, enlightening, or empowering.
My personal favourite kinds of questions to ask the cards, when I read for myself. are the questions on the meaning of life. The questions like: "Which life path can I choose to follow would bring me the most joy and fulfillment?",. "What is the nature of my connection to the world around me?", "How does destiny work?"....personally I love asking those.
Besides all this, Tarot cards have many other uses than just doing readings. They can in fact not only predict the future you are heading towards now, but they can also be used to literally create the future you want. A much more helpful way of using them, in my eyes. ( more about that in next month's Tarot Demystified) But the cards CAN very much tell you not only what you can accomplish, but how to accomplish it and how to be the best you can be and reach new heights. How many tools in life can do that?
Besides all the potential benefits to the querents, and there ARE many of those. Tarot is a very useful tool for the reader as well. The act of learning to read Tarot cards teaches us a lot about life and how it works that it would be hard to learn any other way. Eg about the nature of how the future works, as readers we see it in action all the time.
Tarot is also an excellent tool, one of the best I know of, it develop and improve our intuition. Intuition is a normal part of every one of us. But in most it is underdeveloped as it is not currently as valued by society as it used to be at different points in the past. They say, and I believe it to be true from my personal experience, that intuition is like a muscle. It grows and strengthens the more you use it. Tarot is a tool that lets you exercise it and the more you read the cards the more it develops. And that spreads into all areas of your life and creates beauty in that way.
Contrary to popular belief,. you do NOT have to be psychic to be a good Tarot reader. You do not have to be born that way, with some kind of psychic gift. That is another popular Tarot misconception. But yes, working with Tarot will develop that intuitive side of you more and more. It grows with use and becomes more and more dependable and useful to you in your everyday life. All the same, reading the cards is a skill that anyone can learn, and in my opinion . one that would bring benefits to anyone who puts in the work to learn it.
Tarot cards can also be used to learn to understand yourself and your path better. There are a number of methods for that. Also, there are many kinds of meditations a reader can work with to help open things up inside. (More about Tarot meditations also in next month's newsletter).
So really the uses for Tarot are only limited by the imagination. It's a tool that CAN answer anything you ask. And that knowledge is power. There are no negative Tarot cards and no even the meaning of the Death card is not about actual death. And the future,. as shown by the cards is not set it stone, The cards do not cause anything to happen, and you can choose to change the future as it is shown in the cards if you like. In fact the cards are the best tool I know of to change the future. And Tarot can and should be a tool to free you to find your highest joy and to be the best you you can be.
All that being said,. and after having talked about how the media can tend to portray Tarot in a negative/scary and inaccurate light, I have recently read two novels that mention Tarot and do not paint it in a negative light.
if you happen to be a Tarot reader, these may interest you, so I will add them in for you here (they are of course available on Kindle too, which is where I read them).
- This one was recommended to me by a fellow Tarot reader on a Tarot bulletin board I use often. Even the book's name is Tarot-related, it's called: The Five of Cups, by Wendy Mewes. In it the main character does readings and the sky does not fall in and things are tine. :-)
- This one I adore! It's Book 1 of 3. Very fairytale-like. Full of magic. It's I guess what you would call a supernatural romance novel, a genre which I am finding I tend to enjoy lately. in it the beings in the card images are faeries who were imprisoned within the images. By the end of the book the heroine frees them and they come back to life to live their normal lives. By book 2, you start to get to know them as the unique individuals they are. Something about the idea of getting to know the characters of my Tarot deck and having them come to life so that I can talk with them in reality, ....just attracts me to that book. Well written too, I tend to love that author's work, personally. And that book is called: The Magic Knot, by Helen Scott Taylor. If you ever read it. Oh by the way, Parts 2 and 3, in that order are called: The Phoenix Charm and The Ruby Kiss. (the last one I found quite funny in parts)
Coming next month: Setting and working on your goals, using Tarot