Tarot readings can be an interesting way to connect our intuition to our environment by using a psychic tool. Originally, tarot cards were invented as a game by combining two different decks in the mid-1400s. Now, tarot cards are a tool for awakening psychic abilities and connecting to intuition. There are many different superstitions about tarot readings like a reader’s deck should be a gift or it should be stolen. Whether you believe in these nuances or not, tarot is a powerful tool for self-inquiry.
Before you decide to take up tarot reading you may want to familiarize yourself with the history, traditions, and rituals around tarot. It might be challenging, though, since there are so many different lineages that leverage the power of tarot. Modern readers are cultivating their own relationship with their deck by integrating self-proclaimed ritual, ceremony, and prayer. Some readers enjoy bringing in the elements and incorporating earth in the form of crystals, water, fire, air, and ether. Ultimately, there is no wrong way to go about working with a tarot deck.
From a yogic perspective, tarot reading is an excellent way to inquire as to what is arising in your field of awareness. We’re often aware of the surface emotions, thoughts, feelings, and sensations; but tarot helps us to go deeper by presenting us with a card and asking us to look at our attachments to our perception of the card. It’s all about interpretation, and the more you practice a projection-free way of life the easier it gets to use tarot as a tool for Svadhyaya.
In the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, we learn that the Niyamas are spiritual rituals or observances that we can integrate into our lives to be more receptive to Self Realization. One of the Yamas in Svadhyaya, or self-study. Another Niyama is Tapas. Tapas is the determination and the dedication one has to the practice. When you couple Tapas and Svadyaya together you can achieve states of clarity where truth becomes clear apart from perception and the story that is attached to perception. This allows for a deeper understanding of motivation, cause and effect, and ultimately the application of compassion for the human conditions that keep us bound in samskara, or habitual patterning.
When we can pause to reflect on our material before we react, when we can leverage metacognition to identify our attachments, then we can see intuition’s bright light shining in the fog. When this occurs we are ready to dive into the mystic tools like tarot, astrology, and other forms of psychic reading and mediumship.
Establishing A Practice
As you cultivate an established practice of self-study and objectivity where you are sniffing out your attachments and letting go of them to free yourself up for personal growth you become more open to psychic energy. Your intuition develops and begins to become more acute. This is the perfect time to start working with tarot cards.
At first, you may want to draw only once a week. This is a great strategy because it allows you to really sit with the experience and reflect on what the cards had to share with you. When you first begin to draw spreads, you may want to draw a four-card spread where you draw a card with a universal message, a card with a message about your inner work, a card with a message about your life’s work, and a card about your heritage. This simple spread can be very informative.
As you establish your practice you will want to remember that the cards can’t be taken literally. You don’t want to take the cards at face value; each card is bringing a message of metaphor into your life. The death card is not about your death or even the death of something you’re attached to, it’s just about new beginnings, opportunities, changes, and growth. Our perception of death clouds our ability to see the possibilities unless we’re coming clean and projection-free to our practice.
The more you practice the more you will find ways to read any spreads that work especially well for you. You might even develop strategic tactics for setting your intention before you draw your spread. As with anything, the more experience you have the more insight you will receive.
Once you’ve established your practice and you are starting to branch out with the types of spreads you work with and the intentions you set, you may want to begin to incorporate ritual into your tarot reading. Rituals can be anything you want them to be. Essentially, you want to create a sacred rite around your experience where you are amplifying your intention.
You may want to start working with incantations. An incantation is an intention and an affirmation together stated in the present tense. You may know incantations as a spell, and that is technically true. Incantations work by joining the power of intention and the power of affirmation together in one action. You may chant it, speak it, pray it, write it, or think it and then follow it with a reading ritual to initiate it into being.
The more comfortable you get with your intuitive and psychic abilities, and the more you read tarot, the more you will want to share your knowledge with others. You may want to create workshops or classes, or you may want to donate your time during concerts, festivals, or at yoga studios. Teaching and sharing the practice with others will bring the entire experience full circle.
Traditional Tarot Teaching
Traditionally, mystic teaching, including psychic teaching and intuitive manifestation, is taught by the mother. In the United States, we’ve been conditioned to believe that these things are bad or wrong, but they are actually part of our indigenous heritage. If you look at the Indigenous Americans, Eastern Europeans, the Middle Easterners, the Northerners, and the tribes of Africa and South America all practice some form of mystic arts. America is just starting to tap into its true indigenous roots in terms of its people learning about their true heritage and adopting practices from their lineage. The general population is relaxing the puritan perspective and opening to the possibilities of true spiritual freedom. As we explore these teachings and tools, it’s important to continue to focus on maintaining our authenticity rather than buying it propaganda that society wants us to buy into. In other words, if tarot, incantations, chanting, mudra, transcendental meditation, or any other mystic practice speaks to you then by all means please embrace it. Pure Awareness does not punish; Universal Consciousness, Christ Consciousness only holds space for the unfolding of experience. Embrace what helps you to connect to inner knowing in a more authentic and holistic way.