Tarot

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Tarot

Post by gillyflower on Fri Jan 15, 2010 8:47 pm

I honestly don't know where to put this. So, if you do or don't use a tarot deck, why would that be? Does it have a role in your religion? How do you use it? What spreads are your favorites? Do you use reversals? How did you learn to use them? Why? What do you use them for now? Do you read for others? Under what circumstances will you read the cards? What are your favorite decks and why?

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Re: Tarot

Post by Gorm_Sionnach on Fri Jan 15, 2010 10:25 pm

I do not use a tarot deck because (initially) divination was not something I was remotely interested in, as I conflated it with predictions about the future (which to be fair is why many do use tarot, or other forms of divination). I do not use them now because well they certainly do not meld into the GRP framework. I do utilize some forms of divination as a means of UPG, but generally those which are attested to (such as augury).

There are many who also use Ogham divination, one of the "founders" of CR, Erynn Rowan Laurie, actually has a highly regarded book on Ogham divination which differs from the more common Tree Ogham model. I suppose were I to incorporate more aspects of divination into my day to day activities, I'd go for ones which were more culturally appropriate, so to speak.

Outside of that, I have no issues with tarot, many a pagan I know utilizes them, many of the decks are ascetically beautiful, so I do appreciate them from such a perspective.

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Re: Tarot

Post by DotNotInOz on Sat Jan 16, 2010 5:08 am

Gorm_Sionnach wrote:I do not use a tarot deck because (initially) divination was not something I was remotely interested in, as I conflated it with predictions about the future (which to be fair is why many do use tarot, or other forms of divination).

If you'll forgive a slight correction, I would say that use of divination to predict the future is not an indicator of seriousness about using divination within the context of a magickal practice. Furthermore, I regard such use as a perversion. (And I'm not really correcting you, Gorm, so much as saying this for others who may happen onto this thread not knowing a great deal about tarot beyond the popular image of it.)

Both dedicated amateur and professional tarot readers do not regard the tarot as capable of predicting the future in any sense in which that phrase is understood.

In fact, I begin a reading by reminding the questioner that the cards merely suggest what may happen based upon the questioner's state of mind at the time of reading. They do not and cannot tell us what will happen; there are too many variables resulting from the choices people make every moment of their lives.

The cards' primary use is to enlighten the questioner about hir own thought processes and motives relative to the question asked.
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Re: Tarot

Post by DotNotInOz on Sat Jan 16, 2010 5:33 am

gillyflower wrote:So, if you do or don't use a tarot deck, why would that be?


I suppose most would say it has a role in what passes for my religion, although I consider ceremonial magick more of a meditative practice than a religion. There are elements of religion about it but more along the lines of personal insights rather than any pronouncements about the workings of the cosmos or human relationships to deities. In fact, as I practice it, there's some question as to whether or not the deities involved are anything but metaphors.

Does it have a role in your religion?

Very much so, if you call what I do a religion, and I expect that many would.

How do you use it?

Largely for insights into my own thinking but also as preparation for some ritual work. I mostly use individual cards for meditation on their symbols and occasionally do readings for myself when I'm troubled and don't know what course of action to take.

What spreads are your favorites?

The standard Celtic Cross is what I use generally but largely because I'm most familiar with it. Couldn't even tell you the names of others I've used. I have a book of spreads and occasionally flip through it to try out others, but that's more along the lines of experimenting to see if another is satisfying.

Do you use reversals? How did you learn to use them? Why? What do you use them for now?

Very much so. I've rarely done a reading for myself or others where the meanings of the reversed cards were not crucial to understanding the overall reading.

LOL...I'm entirely self-taught, using various books, so that's how I learned to use them. Along with experimenting and finding that sometimes a reading makes more sense by turning all the reversed cards upright, other times it's more precise reading the reversals in context.

I don't pick and choose which reversals to turn and which not, though. It's either all or none. Otherwise, I think I'd be too tempted to tinker with the reading by turning those which would give a more acceptable meaning.

Do you read for others? Under what circumstances will you read the cards?

I do occasionally but only for people I know who I feel will take the reading seriously and are not merely seeking a cheap thrill.

What are your favorite decks and why?

Thoth Deck, without a doubt, because its artwork is so beautifully executed and complex. Also, its symbols can be understood on so many levels. It's like a great work of art or literature. Every time I go back and meditate on a specific card, I see things that I didn't see before.

I generally use the Sacred Rose deck by Johanna Sherman for everyday readings largely because it was the one I happened onto years ago as a New Ager and began using regularly. It still has that "comfy old clothes" feeling and has brightly colored images that remind me of stained glass.

I have never been able to use the so-called "beginner's deck," the Rider-Waite. Something about it is very off-putting for me.
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Re: Tarot

Post by gillyflower on Sat Jan 16, 2010 8:38 am

Oh my, the Rider-Waite is the one I return to again and again after using one of the pretty or unusual decks I have. Maybe it is because I have had it 40+ years and it feels like an old friend, a more comfortable fit. The cards a bit worn and it is well broken in.

I first got a deck way back in college - yay for Hippie wannabees! - and then dropped it until oh, twenty years ago. I read a lot of books about it but it really didn't click with me until I created my own deck, drawing the pictures that seemed to fit each one and writing out what I thought they meant. This was before there were blank cards available (and internet shopping) so I put them on index cards. It took a long time and I'm not that talented so they aren't great looking! But still, it was a voyage that reaped rewards.

I've never been much of a fortune teller type person so I don't use it to foretell the future. It was hardest of all to learn to read the cards for myself because it is a temptation to read them much more harshly for me than it is for someone else. That was a big hurdle to overcome. I very occasionally read for other people, both in person and over the internet or phone and haven't done it for awhile. I go through spells where I don't read them for a long time, too, and keep a journal of my readings. I recommend that.

I use a Celtic Cross and reversals. I tried it without for a while but it gave me a limited vocabulary so I expanded it again to include reversals, which are rarely IMO the "bad" cards some people think they are. I only ask one question which is "What do you want me to know?" or a variation on that. I look upon it, as I have said before, as a conversation with my gods. If they can affect things in the physical world, as I believe they can, then they can affect the cards. They tell me about things I need to know, or things that they think it will benefit me to know and give me insights into why I am doing what I am, and what I need to change or expect or take care of.

The most powerful card, IMO, is the card that tells you why you are asking the question. Over the years, I've found that insight to be very important to me personally.

Tarot doesn't have a role in my religion although a lot of people in my religion use tarot or some kind of divining tool.

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Re: Tarot

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Sat Jan 16, 2010 9:11 am

Oh! I do! I do!

I have the Russian Tarot of St. Petersburg and the Mideival Cat Tarot. The cat tarot is a lot easier to read but the Russian tarot was my first deck.

I use the Celtic Cross spread and don't use reversals. It's my understanding reversals are a new thing, and my readings make perfect sense to me since I established the no reversals rule.

I do read for others on occasion but mostly for myself. I also do use mine more to see the potential future outcome of a path, to help me determine which is the best route to take. That's been a big help in a lot of ways, not only to show an outcome but to show me what's going on in my thoughts as well.

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Re: Tarot

Post by gillyflower on Sat Jan 16, 2010 9:36 am

TED, how are you doing? Good to see you again!

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Re: Tarot

Post by DotNotInOz on Sat Jan 16, 2010 10:29 am

gillyflower wrote:Oh my, the Rider-Waite is the one I return to again and again after using one of the pretty or unusual decks I have. Maybe it is because I have had it 40+ years and it feels like an old friend, a more comfortable fit. The cards a bit worn and it is well broken in.

Curious, isn't it, how one person's favorite is another's NO WAY deck?

I think for me it's largely the colors on the R-W. A good many of the cards have that lemon yellow background, and yellow is not my favorite color by a longshot. I also don't like the pattern on the backs of the cards.

The deck otherwise is more than adequate as a good many satisfied users attest. I simply don't like its looks.

So, how have you gone about picking a deck?

I'd honestly have to say that a deck usually lets me know it's the one for me, my Thoth deck purchase story being the most dramatic of those.

When I worked at Borders and was asked by a customer how to choose a deck, I'd usuallly tell them that if they weren't drawn to a particular one merely by the appearance of the box art, then hold each possible choice in their dominant hand for a few moments. Direct contact with the deck (as much as was allowed in the store) would tell them which one was right. Sometimes, people would say that a given box actually seemed to feel warm to the touch or made their hand tingle.
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Re: Tarot

Post by gillyflower on Sat Jan 16, 2010 10:12 pm

I look for pretty decks, and that is such a individual thing.

Does anyone have any favorite cards or cards you hate to see in your spreads? Have you had any unusual spreads or readings?

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Re: Tarot

Post by john5180 on Sun Jan 17, 2010 10:09 am

I don't read them, but I do like to have readings done for me. And I do so for the main reason Dot spoke of.... not religious, although I believe the information comes from the spirit realm, but for guidance, and yes, often times grounding of my emotions. Being read by tarot, tossing runes, even having tea leaves or dregs of coffee in one's cup is spiritual to me only in the sense that the ancestors are pointing out a road map I can follow, and the pit falls and stumbling blocks I may encounter.

The reason I don't read is two fold.... Firstly (and this may be a contributing factor to the second) is that I don't really understand it...... spiritually that is. The second reason is that I still have a long way to go spiritually before I feel that I'm ready to venture in that direction. To me it isn't a game; and neither is playing with the Ouija Board. Hell, when I read my horoscope I am so unattuned and scattered in my thinking that more often than not I need Willowcreek to interpret them. I would never try to read someone else. I would be afraid of giving a misleading read, and cause havoc.
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Re: Tarot

Post by gillyflower on Sun Jan 17, 2010 10:30 am

It is interesting that you bring that up, about reading for other people. At first, I was eager to read for other people, then some things happened, and now I'm reluctant to read for other people. It wasn't bad things necessarily. It is just that I think I looked upon it as a game and then realized that the things that were in the cards were actually happening.

The only way I can do it, is make it clear that these are not my interpretations. I am an odd sort of reader! I have an old ratty book and show people it comes straight out of there. I refuse (most of the time) to make the connection to what is happening in their lives. They usually don't have a problem doing that themselves.

I don't look upon it as religious per se, as in a religious ritual. It is a way to have a conversation with my gods or whomever is communing with me at the time.

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Re: Tarot

Post by john5180 on Sun Jan 17, 2010 10:39 am

gillyflower wrote:I don't look upon it as religious per se, as in a religious ritual. It is a way to have a conversation with my gods or whomever is communing with me at the time.

I know in my belief, the Druids read runes, and more than likely had tarot of some sort.... there is the Celtic cross (my favorite) which is used to give readings. Ritual? I agree that this isn't probably the case. Communing with the gods? Yes, I can wrap my head around that, for it is the ancestors passing information down for us.

When I think of the Druid, I think of someone who was so spiritually atuned that they were spiritual conduits between earth and the ancestors. I'm no where near being in that league, and likely never will be.
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Re: Tarot

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Sun Jan 17, 2010 12:47 pm

gillyflower wrote:TED, how are you doing? Good to see you again!

Thanks Gilly. Great and not so great. Hope you are. Laid off at job #2, which is stressful since I really need money, but catching up on the years of rest I never got.

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Re: Tarot

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Sun Jan 17, 2010 12:55 pm

gillyflower wrote:I look for pretty decks, and that is such a individual thing.

Does anyone have any favorite cards or cards you hate to see in your spreads? Have you had any unusual spreads or readings?

I looked through probably 100 different decks online before I decided on the mideival cat deck. It took me forever. Many appeal to me aesthetically but it has to feel like a real connection.

The Russian Tarot is often known as the prettiest deck around, and it was my first because it was so beautiful I had to take it home from the store. It comes with a 200-page book that explains the intricate detailed symbolism in the hand-paintings on each card.




I love so many of the cards. I feel very connected to the Hermit, who generally symbolizes me. I also love Temperance. There really aren't any cards I dislike because it all depends on where they fall into the spread... I have no problem seeing tragedy in the past. Wink Also, I'm generally nonattached to my readings so I don't get distraught when I see a lot of tragic cards in the future, which I often do.

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Re: Tarot

Post by gillyflower on Sun Jan 17, 2010 8:26 pm

What do you read for Temperance, TED?

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Re: Tarot

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Mon Jan 18, 2010 9:24 am

I still use guidebooks to get synonyms for the card meanings, to be sure I don't overlook a potential interpretation. Generally though, I see Temperance as balance, harmony, and equality.

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Re: Tarot

Post by gillyflower on Mon Jan 18, 2010 9:49 am

I use books too. I see it as balance and also good people and management skills. It is also a reminded to me to use patience. Smile

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