Tarot, like anything in the occult or spiritual realm, is rife with bullshit.
Myths, fears and lies abound from the very beginnings of the tarot history. It’s unfortunate that lots of these ignore the expansive, energetic capabilites of divination itself.
Let’s lose that paranoia by going through some of the most popular tarot myths.
Don’t even think of buying your own deck! *slaps cards out of your hand*
Of course the gift of a new deck is wonderful! But how will you know you’ll LOVE the deck, sight unseen? Even well researched purchases can turn out to be duds.
There are probably thousands of tarot and oracle decks available now. You can have loads of fun browsing through the different kinds. How better to find your new life-long learning tool than to pick it yourself?
You must keep your deck under your pillow/wrapped in black silk/x y z
If it makes you feel good, then ok. Don’t get all hung up on missing your only chance to “connect” with your cards if you don’t do a specific ritual as soon as you get them. The connection starts with you- through practice, meditation and being centered when reading.
What you store your tarot deck in is a practical matter. You want to keep the cards together and clean. Boxes tend to fall apart after a while, so a nice bag or tarot wrap will do the trick. There are many kinds of bags, cases and wraps available.
If you believe colors to have power, black may provide an extra layer of spiritual protection for your cards.
I keep most of my decks shelved out in the open. But I just like seeing exactly which deck is which.
Tarot is ancient.
If by ancient you mean 15th century, then ok.
The first documented tarot packs were recorded between 1430 and 1450 in Milan, Ferrara and Bologna when additional trump cards with allegorical illustrations were added to the common four-suit pack. These new decks were called carte da trionfi, triumph cards, and the additional cards known simply as trionfi, which became “trumps” in English. These cards are documented in a written statement in the court records in Florence, in 1440. The oldest surviving tarot cards are from fifteen decks painted in the mid 15th century for the Visconti-Sforza family, the rulers of Milan. During the 16th-century, a new game played with a standard deck but sharing the same name (triomphe) was quickly becoming popular. This coincided with the older game being renamed tarocchi.
Tarot is magick and readers fart rainbows.
Well…..yes and no. Not the farting rainbows part. Tarot CAN be used in spellwork to good effect. But tarot is really given too much power by those who consume the media. I’m talking about those who do not study it. Don’t get me started on The Tarot Reading Gypsy stereotype.
Let’s knock this thinking down a few pegs. Tarot cards are playing cards. Paper and ink. They were made to amuse the Italian court. Somewhere down the line, like any other kind of playing card, they began being used for divination.
There is nothing mystical about them. Nor tarot readers. We are simply using natural gifts. Some people are better than others. Some people use clairvoyance, some clairsentience. Some read well-worn keywords they’ve scribbled on their cards. There are several other means by which information comes through to us.
That may be the only somewhat “out there” part about tarot reading. We can use all our tangible senses as well as our psychic ones. Yet there are different explanations on the mechanics of this. And when spirits start showing up, well, ok, that might be seen as mystical. It hasn’t happened for me yet, but that’s the realm of mediums you’re getting into.
Tarot cards are evil.
No. They are playing cards repurposed for divination. They originated in very Catholic Italy. Actually performing divination can help people, and can be done with a Bible (bibliomancy). Knowledge is power.
The Death card is bad!
Once you realize the infinite meanings each card has, this isn’t a thing anymore. Each card has the potential to tell you about “good” and “bad”. Death, as part of the major arcana, symbolized major themes and story arcs in a person’s life. It most often comes up when something is about to end- jobs, relationships, etc.
What do you mean the querent doesn’t need to be in the room?
They don’t. You’re opening yourself up to the energy of the person’s life and choices up to that point. These will develop and culminate into even more infinite possibilities.
Reading online will open up your reader pool a thousand fold. You may find yourself reading for only a username or avatar!
Getting a reading is scary.
That depends more on where and with who you’re getting a reading from. Fake gypsies pushing $5000 magick candles to work on that curse of yours is “theatrical scary”. The rest of us are pretty normal, down to earth card slingers who just want to help.
Some people (adults, children are always very eager and open!) will exclaim they don’t want to know the future. That’s fine. They won’t get a reading from you. If someone says this and is still waiting for you to draw the cards, this is where you can take some time to educate them.
Making wildly accurate predictions isn’t something to be scared of, is it? Forewarned is forearmed. Personally, I’ve never given someone a reading that was even remotely scary. You’ll likely find the majory of your readings to be either something the client is aware of already or the likely progression of current trends.
Even predictions from left field are grounded in reality. People, jobs and meetings the client has no idea about right now will come up in their readings. They need to sit tight until they start to happen. It’s pretty cool when you begin to make that connection. But again, the things you tell people tend to be everyday, normal sort of things.
So that’s my .02 on the deal. I try to normalize where I can. Hope you’ve found this helpful in clearing up some misconceptions. Don’t think tarot and divination aren’t an amazing, tight-rope walk through the dimensions. On the contrary.
Just don’t get hung up on the little things. Tarot is a wonderful tool and of course your personal preferences will shape everything from the deck you use to the readings you do.