Your A to Z of Complementary Health & Healing

Understanding The Tarot

Historically, some believe that the Tarot was first used in medieval Europe, when it was brought over from India by the gypsies. Others believe that it originated in Ancient Egypt.   

More and more people visit psychics and tarot readers to get insight into a number of life questions.  We often wonder what the future holds or have reached a crossroads in life where we want to know what the consequences of a particular decision would be.  Most people think of the Tarot as a fortunetelling tool, but they can also assist in guiding us on the best possible course of action for resolving problems and making positive change. 

The Tarot can offer advice on a number of questions which include:

• How to attain greater prosperity and success
• How to improve a relationship 
• Career choices
• What would be the best course of action to improve health and wellness
• Finding love in the near future

There is more to the Tarot reading than asking a question, dealing the cards and then looking up the answer in a book.   The Tarot can be used a tool for using the intuitive capacity that is within all of us. 

Working with the Cards

A classical Tarot pack consists of 78 cards, 22 Major Arcana cards and 56 Minor Arcana cards.  The Major Arcana is a set of trump cards which are decorated with pictures that represent man’s journey through life, showing the setbacks and opportunities that he encounters along the way.  The Minor Arcana are very similar to an ordinary pack of playing cards and indicate the challenges of daily life. 

There are 4 suits in the Minor Arcana.  These are Cups (affairs of the heart), Wands (career or work issues), Pentacles (material affairs) and Swords (intellectual affairs).  

The rituals that surround the use of the Tarot differ from person to person, but legend has it that the cards will not work unless they are kept wrapped in a piece of silk. This prevents them from being contaminated by outside psychic forces.    Intuition plays a large role when choosing a deck.  There are a number of decks to choose from and it is important to find a deck that one can relate or respond to.   The Rider-Waite is most commonly used by those beginners who embark on the journey of understanding the Tarot. 

When preparing for a reading, it is important to create an atmosphere that allows the reader and querant to remain focused.  Candles and incense can be burned to clear the surrounding energies.    It may be beneficial for the reader to prepare themselves beforehand so that their mind is clear from everyday concerns and worries.  A short meditation can help the reader to become focused, centred and relaxed before a reading. 

Handling the Cards

The reader should shuffle the cards thoroughly before the reading.   The cards are then handed to the querant for shuffling.  Whilst the querant is shuffling the cards they can think of their question or keep an open mind to get the guidance that they require. 

Once the querant has shuffled the cards, they are required to cut the deck into three with their left hand and then reassemble the pack in a different order. When the cards have been handed back, the reader can lay out the cards in the Tarot Spread or Layout of their choice.   Cards that fall out during the shuffling process should be noted, as the message may be important to the querant. 

There are a number of spreads that can be used in a reading.  The simplest is the one card reading that can be used for day to day messages.  A three card reading can be very informative for advice on the past, present and future.    The most common spread used is the Celtic Cross, but once accustomed to the cards, the reader can begin to invent their own spreads to suite the readings that they do.  The Celtic Cross gives an excellent overview of the querant’s situation and covers current circumstances, obstacles, past influences, future influences, the querant’s hopes and fears and the best possible outcome. 

Like any form of divination, the querant’s best interest and feelings should always be borne in mind during a tarot reading,  and a high level of professionalism and integrity should be upheld by the reader at all times.  

For a personal reading or to learn more about the Tarot, please contact Yvonne de Bruin on (011) 791-3995 or yvonne@spiritualworld.co.za or  visit www.spiritualworld.co.za