Are Tarot Cards Bad?

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Tarot Cards have been around in the modern form since about 1400 and there have been no documented cases of harm or loss of faith by anyone who has gazed upon them or had a reading. No, Tarot cards will not make you lose your soul or put you in contact with Demons or help you do black magic spells. (The world government would look a little different if dark magic cartomancers were calling the shots don’t you think?) .  If nothing else they would dress a little more lavishly, there would definitely be more scarves. All kidding aside, if you are of the Muslim faith there are images of sentient beings clearly depicted on the cards and it is my understanding that in the muslim tradition an illustrator who tries to draw a sentient being is competing with the glory of the masterpiece of the creator. I personally don’t think that Tarot illustrators think that loftily of themselves.  We might just have to agree to disagree and call it a cultural point of difference. That being said most of my Muslim friends watch movies and look at their phones and take tons of selfies so that is a point of faith modern life may extend a bit of flexibility to. No disrespect at all to muslim influenced art, it is amazing. Western art just went a different way in Florence at the time of the Renaissance.  Which is about the time that Tarot cards started circulating. There are some cautions to be made to the person who is new to the art and one should definitely not hand over personal power to someone who claims to have all the answers to your worries based on some playing cards spread on a table. But in general, if you are curious and think the images are compelling and want to know more about this amazing art form that has traveled through so many countries and seen so much history you can take a peek at a modern Tarot deck and not get your soul scalded. Actually many of the themes represented in the tarot cards make reference to christian themes and originated at a time when most of the news was carried from town to town by word of mouth. The cards could well have been a short hand communication device for stories passed down.  Especially stories of the church.  Much like the stained glass windows we would later see in the great cathedrals of Europe. Some of the Cards in the Rider Waite deck refer to the changes that were sweeping across Europe along with the Black Death.  The pope features prominently in several cards. Surely culture was changing so fast the cards were a great aid to the storytellers before the majority of the populace could read. The tarot cards were probably a great way to communicate a lot of information quickly by summarizing complex subjects concisely. It is the complex nature of the cards that make them so compelling.  They allow us to see patterns and search for subtitles all at the same time.

Are Tarot Cards just for fortuneteller’s?

No, tarot cards have been used and recommended by some very intelligent people over the years and not just for fortune telling. It is said that Philip K Dick used Tarot cards to help him make creative choices in his writing and would pull a tarot card to gain insight into a character or plot twist he was working on. The foundational psychologist and famed student of Dr. Freud, Dr. Carl Jung spoke of tarot cards as a way to become aware of synchronicities in your life or as a way to tap into the collective unconscious. Even if you never learned the meanings or tried to discern your fortune from them they are an amazing way to get exposed to many different kinds of art.

How Can a Tarot Card reading be good for me?

Moderation in all things.  Remember to take all readers with a grain of salt.  Just relax and enjoy the images and see where they take your imagination. Instead of asking the cards or the reader for an outcome ask for an insight.
  • If you are facing a decision pull a spread and ask the cards what you need to know to be better prepared for the changes in your life.
  • Ask how you can be a better friend or lover
  • Ask what you can do to change your character to attract more wealth.
Take your time, look over the images and see what you can glean from the art.  You may take away a fresh perspective that makes all the difference. Opening your mind to a fresh perspective is never bad and that is all the Tarot cards are offering.

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