For reasons that are a bit inexplicable to me, I have suddenly decided that it would be interesting and helpful to learn how to read the Tarot. I already have more than a passing familiarity with some elements of the occult and am a certified Reiki practitioner, so I’m not just a meat and potatoes scientific type.
However… what I’m trying to ascertain is how to get started. The concept behind the Tarot is fascinating, and our playing cards have all evolved from Tarot and other divination cards, so even at the level of playing a mean game of cribbage, learning the Tarot will be helpful. 🙂
The two books I’m considering are Learning the Tarot: A Tarot Book for Beginners and Tarot As a Way of Life: A Jungian Approach to the Tarot. The latter is appealing because the author explores Tarot as a way of understanding and working with Jungian archetypes, rather than imparting a canned interpretation of specific cards and their meanings, but it’s also supposed to be somewhat dry.
The former book, Learning the Tarot, has terrific reviews at Amazon (in fact, both of these seem to be held in high esteem in Tarot circles, according to some random googling) and is more about the history and traditional method of doing Tarot readings, which would probably also be useful.
So… it might come down to which one the local Borders / Barnes & Noble has in stock, and that’ll determine my starting point. Since I’m travelling all day tomorrow and Wednesday, it’s the perfect time to immerse myself in something new.
And then… and then it’s time to pick a Tarot deck to work with. Just as there are lots of different styles of playing cards, there are lots of different Tarot decks, ranging from the traditional Waite (also known as the Universal Waite, which sounds more like some sort of joke you’d hear on the BBC, if you ask me) to more unusual decks like Lord of the Rings and Arthurian Legends. Tarot Moon offers a glimpse of many beautiful decks.
Most beginners seem to stick with some variant of a Waite deck so that’s what I’ll do too, I expect. Fortunately, I’m pretty sure we already have a Waite deck laying around in our house, so I should be able to get started without too much expenditure.
Updates as I progress. And if you want a reading, well, give me a month or two and perhaps I can start practicing with my friends… 🙂