The true Tarot is symbolism; it speaks no other language and offers no other signs.
Arthur E. Waite
Tarot cards have a long and disputed history. Some say they originated in Italy in the 1400’s as playing cards, others claim they were developed as a secret language to carry on the teachings of a persecuted people.
No matter what their history, tarot cards are, today, recognized around the world as one of the most popular tools of divination.
The most common tarot decks consist of 78 cards, all bearing symbols which hold sacred meanings to the person reading the cards, and passed down in a specific arangement called a ‘layout’ through the akashic records.
The 78 card deck consists of 2 main divisions called the major and minor arcana. The minor arcana is further divided into the pips and the court cards. In general, the major archana represents the spritual journey of our lives, while the minor arcana represents our everday lives, concerne with the physical and material worlds. The court cards often represent people in our lives.
One of the main assumptions about the tarot is that is a tool of “fortune telling.” In fact, most legitimate readers use them a tool of self-insight and self-discovery. The cards tell a story: a story of life that we can all relate to. By interpreting the symbols & colors on the cards, we can understand what the universe is trying to tell us about our life, what to look for and how to move towards the things we want in life, since we all have free will. If you find a reader who “tells” you what will happen, or claims to be “99% accurate” – be wary. The real purpose of the cards is to help you navigate your own path using your own decisions.
There are 4 suits to the cards, each representing a natural element:
- Pentacles: Earth: Represents physical/material world, finances, home and stability
- Swords: Air: Represents intellect, thought processes, education
- Cups: Water: Represents emotions and relationships
- Wands: Fire: Represents spiritual awakening, initiative, creativity
Numerologically, each suit goes from 1 – 10, plus the court cards. As we move through each one of the suits we begin a new jouney in our life.
Once we have moved through the minor arcana, we move onto the journey of the major arcana, which tells a story of spirital enlightenment, starting with the innocent Fool, ready to step off into the unknown, and ending with the World, a woman of worldly knowledge, who has seen and learned a great deal and is ready to begin a new journey, again arriving back at the position of the Fool.
Like anything else, tarot cards can be used wisely, or abused by lack of knowledge of their true power. Use them properly for their intended purpose and you will find new avenues open to your subconscious you thought never existed.