Practical Guidelines to Working With the Tarot – Part 1 – Fundamental Understandings

The tarot Deck is comprised of 22 major arcana and 56 minor arcana. The original 22 cards depict the main paths of life which are commonly reflected in most major religions while the remaining 56 cards offer finer, more detailed aspect descriptions of the 22 main cards.

The word ‘Arcana’ means secret and refers to the hidden spiritual truths, laws and characteristics that we each hold and create every day of our lives.

The original tarot was not designed to predict the future or to do ‘fortune telling’ and still today this is not its greatest possibility. Working with the tarot gives us a precise method of understanding what we are all about. What our strengths and weaknesses are, what are challenges and obstacles are, and also, because we are always working in communion with the universe, what our greatest possibility is in the current moment and what actions and thoughts will be universally supported at any given time. The tarot when used responsibly and with the proper intention can provide us with deep personal insight that we can use to live easier and more productively.

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The key to using the tarot with accuracy is in understanding what its primary purpose is. There are 3 main aspects that are of significance on a journey of personal growth that the tarot can satisfy.

i) To gain understanding of a current psychological profile of self and or others

ii) To reveal position in the Game of Life, relevant patterns and what the projected course of future holds if continuing on current path.

iii) To allow recognition of your complexity in order to develop to your fullest potential

But as with all things there are certain baseline understandings that will help you develop a grounded expectation

i) All is not known.

Recognize that while there are things that are already manifest and set to happen there is much more that is unknown and still in the works so to speak. Consciousness builds reality. What you do today will go a long way to determining your outcome.

ii) Life is not pre-ordained.

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Each soul is drawn to a life for it’s greatest potential for providing specific teachings and lessons based on existing lineage and heritage of already existing relatives. A great part of each souls growth is how they utilize their own right to choose and express their free will. Each person will and must create their individual reality in every moment. Nothing is cast in stone.

iii) Nothing is final or absolute.

Everyone has the capacity to hold varying degrees of all the archetypal energies, presenting in different degrees at different times. What you don’t show today you may show tomorrow. Remember the cards reflect a picture of a path not an end. Everything is subject to change based in choice.

iv) Do not judge what you see in the cards. Think in terms of learning, growth and possibilities. Nothing is good, bad, right, wrong, light or dark. Everything just IS. Everything holds equal potential for growth and is uniquely individual.


by Andrea Thiel Connell