If you grew up religious like me, you may have heard that tarot cards are evil or completely made up and just used to scam people. Even after deconstructing from my faith and becoming more spiritually minded, I was still hesitant to pick up a deck and dive in. Until I remembered an important lesson the Universe has hit me over the head with time and time again "we are the ones to assign meaning and give power to anything!". After all, it is just a deck a cards so I began my research cautiously.
But after learning more about the rich history, symbolism, and meaning behind the cards, I couldn't put them down! I began reading books, watching YouTube videos, and pulling cards for myself before eventually getting certified so I could read them professionally for my clients! In today's blog, you'll find some of that research as well as a few common myths busted and my personal approach to reading the tarot cards. So grab a cozy drink, put on a little vibey music, and let's talk about tarot!
The History of Tarot:
Like most belief systems and practices, the origin of tarot is a bit shrouded in mystery. These cards were first reported in the 1400's in Italy during the Renaissance, but could date back even further. Records definitely show though that they existed as far back as the 15th century, although back then it was just a game. Eventually it traveled to France where it became a bit more mystical. Taking inspiration from Egyptian symbolism, alchemy, and different spiritual archetypes, the tarot deck became more of the divination tool we know it as today.
Overtime new cards were added to further explain the story of the deck which is an allegory for the spiritual journey all humans embark on. Eventually in 1909, the Rider Waite Smith deck was created which is the most widely used one today. It is based on the instructions that A. E. Waite gave to Pamela Colman Smith to illustrate the cards. Both of them members of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn and considered mystics at the time. This version of the deck is incredibly detailed and their pictures combine astrology, the elements, color, numerology, and soo many other schools of thought that you could study them for years and still find new hidden interpretations!
As with any spiritual tool and much of life, it is the person that assigns meaning so interpretation of each card depends on the reader. (and this is why it is so important to find a legit tarot reader, but more on that in a minute!) But typically each major arcana, which has 22 cards, depicts the big spiritual life lessons we must learn during our journey on earth and different archetypes we can embody. While the minor arcana, with 56 cards, gets into finer details, reveals patterns and traits to work on, and focuses on smaller lessons we learn in the day to today.
Throughout history humans were always searching for deeper truths and connection to the divine which is how tarot reading came to be so popular! There is so much more to say about these 78 cards, but like I said this is a brief history. If you are interested in learning more, you can watch this short video below or the tons of other Youtube videos on the history of tarot:
Although that history lesson though may have brought up even more questions like, "how can these cards someone made up predict the future?", "is this witchcraft or dangerous to do?", "how can you tell a legit reader from a con artist?".
Trust me, I thought all the same things as well when I started learning about tarot so let's dive into some of the misconceptions and myths out there so you can decide if it is something you want to learn more about or possibly get a reading!
Tarot can predict the future: while some tarot readers will tell you that these cards can reveal what will happen to you next week or even year, I don't believe that to be true. The thing is YOU actively manifest your future with every thought, feeling, and action you are taking today. It is unknown and up to you! The cards simply reveal different paths (or as some would say, "timelines") you could take, but they are not final say in your destiny. The cards may also reveal certain traits you need to embody more or patterns that aren't serving you which is why I love to use them for introspection and self healing. If you keep reading, I share more about my approach to reading the tarot below! But to answer the question you're probably wondering - no, tarot can't tell you when you will die or what the winning lottery numbers are.
Tarot is witchcraft/evil/ungodly: Well anything can be witchcraft really. That feather you picked up on a walk might just be pretty to you, but to someone else it is a sign of from the Universe. What is an old family recipe to one person may be a potion to another. It is ALL about intention! And I think it is time to put down the pitch forks and stopped fearing witchcraft because we all do things in our every day life that would be considered magick if we put that energy behind it.
Sure, some may have bad intentions and one could use anything for evil. But at the end of the day, it is just a deck of cards that we assign meaning to with our energy. These cards are not inherently evil and I promise shuffling the deck won't bring on a whole seance scene from The Haunted Mansion. But as always, protect your energy and be careful who you open it up to.
As for if it is ungodly, my personal opinion (after going to Christian school for my entire education and also being a tarot reader & spiritual life coach) is God doesn't care. If anything God is chill with witchcraft. I mean Jesus had some miracles using the elements and his energy like healing the blind man by putting mud on this eyes sooooo...do with that Bible story what you want, but to me anything that connects you more to the divine and yourself isn't a bad thing.
Tarot readers are con artists: Sadly, there are a lot out there who are scamming people especially with the rise of social media and give legitimate readers a bad rep. But there are people, like me, who actually study the symbolism of the deck, spend time developing their intuition, and provide a lot of insight during readings! To make sure you are getting one of those tarot readers, and not a con artist, there's a few simple things to consider.
Did the person reach out to you or did you seek them out? I get messages daily from scammers pretending to be tarot readers saying my "energy is bright" or my "ancestors have a message for me". (btw, thank you I know it is 💁🏼♀️ and also I can just talk to my guides myself). These people are usually trying to talk you into a reading with these compliments and will just block you once you pay their fee.
Lastly, do some research before booking anything - Do they have a website? How long have they been a tarot reader? Do they have reviews? Are they certified? (not required to be legit, but it definitely helps!) Always ask questions first and if it feels sketchy, trust your intuition and run!
So now that we busted a few misconceptions about tarot and you know how to find a legitimate reader, here is my personal approach to tarot and what to expect if you book a reading with me!
As with all my coaching and courses, I have a love based approached meaning there is zero judgment from me and you will find nothing, but support! My goal always is to create a safe environment for my clients to heal, learn, and grow. But sometimes that means a bit of tough love too and the tarot deck sure knows how to do that! The cards are honest af so get ready for some real talk and to face your own sh*t.
That being said though, there are no bad cards. As with everything in life there is a light and a shadow side. Throughout the reading, I will explain both sides to you and help you see which to focus on in your own life. Because all cards have a light and shadow side, I personally don't read reversals as some tarot readers do. This is just a personal preference since I always to look at both aspects of each card and ask you questions to see which is resonating more with your situation right now.
Lastly, if you are curious, I am certified in Tarot Reading through the Psychic Healing Academy which is over 10 hours of study in addition to the countless readings I have provided to clients and for free over on my Instagram stories. Here's what some of those people have to say about working with me:
What to Expect in a Tarot Reading with Me:
Before our reading begins, I will consult my spirit team to guide us through the 30 minute call and reveal through the deck whatever needs to come up! Most people usually know what area of their life they want to focus on during a reading such a love or career, but we can also just do a general life reading and see what comes up! (side note: I do not do health readings since it feels like an ethical line that is not to be crossed for me. Thank you for understanding)
Once we hop on video chat and have a bit of small talk, I will clear the deck, shuffle, and fan all the cards out in front of me. I'll float my hand over them and ask you to tell me "when" to pick a card. To start we will pull 4 cards and I will explain all the symbolism, their meaning, and how they apply to your life.
As I mentioned above, the cards do not predict the future so that isn't our focus during a reading. Instead we will consult the deck to show us different paths for you to take, traits to embody, or unhelpful patterns to release. I treat you just like a 1:1 Spiritual Life Coaching client so anything that I think will help you learn and integrate the lessons from the tarot, I will share with you! I also provide a week of text support after your call for any questions or help you may need in this process of applying it to your life.
During the call, you can ask as many questions as you want and we will pull as many cards after the initial 4 that we can in those 30 minutes. I will also send a brief description and summary of your cards so you can remember what they are. But I also recommend bringing a notebook and having a quiet place for this so you can get the most of your reading. It may also be helpful to have a list of questions to ask the deck such as "how can I better prepare for _________", "what advice do you have about __________", "what do I need to release to move forward?", etc. You can also use this time to ask me any other questions you may have or you can book a Pick My Brain session for that!
If this sounds like something you would like to explore more and see what the cards have to share with you, click here to book a reading with me and use code "tarotwithtara" for $11 off your first reading!
PSA: I will never, ever, ever reach out to you to book a reading. If you receive a DM on Instagram or any other app from a page that looks like mine pretending to be me, please report them for impersonation and block! Don't get scammed y'all.
Thanks for reading this quick blog on tarot! I would love to hear your experience either learning about them for yourself or getting your first reading. And as always if you have any questions, comment them below!
See you next month for another high vibe blog!