My Take on Tarot Cards

I’ve been reading tarot cards (the H.P. Lovecraft and Celtic Wisdom decks) for about the last 10 years. I do this wherever I’m hanging out at the time, because my living spaces are usually covered with old computer junk. So, I get a lot of people jumping in, usually with some preconceived assumptions about why and what I’m doing. And, of course, when I try to explain their eyes glaze over.

So, let’s start with a couple of axioms, first that fortune telling, via any number of methods, has been part of the human condition since shortly after the discovery of masturbation. Therefore, it must be doing something that people want or we wouldn’t keep doing it. Second, fortune telling can’t really predict future events or corporations and governments would have scrying departments and the ones with the best woo woo would be on top of the heap. This doesn’t seem apparent to me. But perhaps I simply haven’t been told

So, what benefit does come from these exercises? My thinking is that a fortune telling system such as tarot cards is a form of psychological analysis that allows us to sort out our thinking and in fact gain some insight into what is happening in our worlds. Let’s take a look at what a tarot deck is and how it’s used.

A tarot deck is a set of images and text each of which describe an aspect of perceived reality. When they are randomly arranged and laid out they become something very close to a finite state map, which is computerese for a snapshot of the universe at a  given point in time. The reader then goes through the card layout in a fixed sequence and relates the associated meaning of each card to and aspect of whatever is being considered. For example, the layout I commonly use is one that provides a daily situation report, going through the beginning, past, challenge, assistance available, overtone, undercurrent and internal mind set in that order. Now, this is where I tend to lose people.

When you go though each card, it’s text and image describes a certain scenario with a number of variables that the reader chooses among. This may or may not relate to a current real world event, but it makes the celebrant review, analyze the actual events and compare them to what the reader says. At the end of this process, using my example, the celebrant has gone through the events of their day and compared them to another set, something that may well give them a valuable insight into or clarification of their situation.

Well, works for me. What do *you* think?

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