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How To Read the Tarot

Intro to Tarot -- A Brief History

by Sakura Blossom

Tarot Cards are a tool for divination, and have been used for years. They are probably the most common form of divination reading with other popular methods being pendulums, runes and coffee/tea grounds readings but are by no means limited to just these! These methods have been portrayed in various forms through popular media, some of which include Harry Potter and Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Tarot originally started out as a playing card game in the mid-15th century in early Europe and that is why they have four suits like regular playing cards. These four suits are what we know well today:

Tarot is now, of course, used mainly for the sole purpose of the divination we've come to see today and it's also not religion-specific. Tarot card reading (as well as Oracle reading which is a bit different than tarot) is used by a lot of different people who have different beliefs. I've seen Christians using them to connect with their arch-angels and I have a personal friend who is Jewish and uses them as well. This is a common misconception that I felt should be shared!

So how do you start?

First you need to find your deck! Selection of a deck can take awhile, as it is recommended that you select a deck that greatly calls to you. If you've ever heard anyone talking about feeling a "connection" with their deck, this is what they're speaking of! When I first started looking for my own, I looked at quite a few decks but just didn't feel interested in buying them. It wasn't until I visited my first spiritual store that I found the deck that was meant for me. I felt a very strong pull towards it and I loved how beautiful the art was on it. It's okay if you don't find one right away, because it's better to wait for the one you truly feel a bond with so that your work with the cards will be even better!

Some ways to know if a deck is right for you are:

Once you've selected your deck, it's time to use them!

Now, some people like to charge their cards in the moonlight or by other methods, which brings us to an important topic. There are many different beliefs as to how tarot cards work and the energy surrounding them, so I will be sharing the main ones that I have encountered myself (but they are not limited to these):

Having shared these, it's very important to note that there is no right or wrong way to read tarot. As with any kind of spiritual practice, there is no definite rule as to how you should do something because it's all relative to you and your personal beliefs.

How to Conduct a Reading and Interpret the Cards

As mentioned above, there is no right or wrong way to perform a reading or to use Tarot cards. Some methods that might work for others, may not work for you. I can only do three card readings, as trying for anything higher usually doesn't work out well and results in random cards being thrown in while I have a friend who cannot do any less than four cards or she faces the same problem as me.

Also, like it was stated before, there is no right or wrong way to do read the cards either. Some people like to use the literal definitions of the cards which are usually shared in books or sometimes even sent along with the particular deck that you have. Others don't like to take the literal meaning and choose to go based off the pictures and intuitive impressions they get themselves.

To find methods that work for you, I highly suggest looking into different spreads and finding those that might appeal to you! You could try doing single card readings or the three card reading which usually takes the form of Past, Present and Future, or any other kind of card layout you find that seems of interest to you! I also highly recommend studying your deck and getting to know the images and the feelings you get from certain cards. Keep track of what feels right and what doesn't, and this will help lead you to success!

You can also practice on yourself and anyone else who may be willing to help you out such as friends and family!

If you'd like to look at different types of spreads you could try, look here: Tarot Card Spreads.

Some important points to keep in mind:

I hope this guide helps you to get started and gives you some information on the basics of Tarot Divination. Enjoy your practicing!

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