The origin of the Tarot is a mystery. It is believed to be used in ancient Egypt and was popularized in Italy in the 15th century as a card game. Later in the 18th and 19th centuries, some scholars of the occult science recognized that the images on the cards were more powerful than a simple game would suggest. They revealed the true use of the Tarot by connecting the cards to Egyptian mysteries, Hermetic philosophy, the Kabbalah, alchemy, and other mystical systems.
HOW TAROT CARDS ARE USED?
The Tarot is most commonly viewed as a tool for divination. A traditional Tarot reading involves a seeker - someone who is looking for answers to personal questions, and a reader - someone who knows how to interpret the cards. After the seeker has shuffled and cut the deck, the reader lays out the chosen cards in a pattern called a spread. Each position in the spread has a meaning, and each card has a meaning as well. The reader combines these two meanings to shed light on the seeker's question.
HOW TAROT CARDS WORK?
The answer lies with the subconscious of the seeker. The divine awareness that resides within each of us, but outside our conscious experience and control helps in picking up the appropriate cards. This can be further explained by example of dreams - several times many of us may have experienced strange dreams which have prophetic qualities. These dreams are generated by our own subconscious mind to give us hints, warnings or messages. We also experience communication from our subconscious mind as intuition and hunches in waking life. Several techniques have been developed for the purpose of utilizing the power of the subconscious mind. some of these are psychotherapy, dream interpretation, visualization and meditation. The tarot is another such tool.
THE TAROT DECK AND ITS STRUCTURE
The Tarot pack is made up of 78 cards divided in to two sections, the Major and Minor Arcana. The Major Arcana consists of 22 cards and are most important as they are given extra weight and importance in a reading. Each of these cards symbolizes some universal theme or aspect of human experience. Each card in the major Arcana has a name and number. Some names convey a card's meaning directly, such as Strength, Justice and Temperance. Other cards are individuals who personify a particular approach to life, such as the Magician or the Hermit. There are also cards with astronomical names, such as the Star, Sun and Moon. They represent the elusive forces associated with these heavenly bodies.
The Minor Arcana consists 56 cards, subdivided into four suits of Wands, Cups, Swords and Coins, each having 14 cards and are numbered Ace through to 10 of each suit, plus four court cards — The Page, The Knight, The Queen and The King. The Minor Arcana brings universal themes as symbolized by Major Arcana card, down into the practical arena to show how they operate in daily events. The Minor Arcana cards represent the activities, emotions, events, people, behavior, ideas and concerns that make up our everyday lives.
For description and significance for each Tarot Card please visit pages below.
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