For centuries, tarot cards have been used as a tool for reflection and self-discovery. Many believe that the tarot holds the secrets of the universe within its 78 rarely-seen cards, speaking in a mystical language that can help uncover the mysteries of life. But to decipher and properly interpret the hidden language of the cards, one must first understand the meaning and symbolism behind each individual card.
The Major Arcana
The Major Arcana consists of 22 cards and is often considered the most important part of the tarot deck. It represents the deep spiritual journey and awakening of the individual, symbolizing the unfolding of the soul. Each card has its own distinct symbolism, meaning and interpretations which are amalgamated from a variety of traditions, including Christianity, Buddhism and Ancient Egyptian beliefs.
The Suit of Wands
The suit of Wands represents the power of transformation and drive for success. It can be interpreted as one’s inner creative energy and courage, as well as the pursuit of ambition and personal goals. Generally, Wands cards are related to communication, wisdom and personal strength.
The Suit of Swords
The suit of Swords borrows its symbols and themes from air and represents the element of mental clarity and intellectual prowess. It is a journey for the mindful individual and represents action taken with reason and thought. The cards of Swords can represent mental challenges, conflict, determination and difficulty.
The Suit of Cups
The suit of Cups is strongly linked to the element of water and represents the emotional aspects of life. These cards can carry hopeful and uplifting messages of unexpected change, deep connection and unrequited love. They also represent intuition, empathy and a capacity to understand the emotions of others.
The Suit of Pentacles
The suit of Pentacles is associated with Earth and reflects the material aspects of life. This suit represents physical actions needed to accomplish goals, as well as the foundations of security and stability. The cards often signify learning, personal development and spiritual growth.
Putting It Together
Understanding the tarot is a journey of inner exploration, and the true meaning of the cards is best left to each individual’s interpretation. By delving into the symbols and elements of each card, one can begin to gain insight into the language of tarot and its powerful ability to help unlock the mysteries of life.
What are the different types of tarot cards?
1. Major Arcana cards: These are also known as the Trump cards and consist of 22 cards with archetypal images representing certain energy and themes. Examples are The Fool, The Empress and The Tower.
2. Minor Arcana cards: These are similar to traditional playing cards and consist of 56 cards divided into four suits that represent personality traits and energies. Examples are Swords (action and intellect), Cups (emotion and relationships), Pentacles (material world and money) and Wands (spirit, creativity and career).
3. Court cards: These are also known as Personality cards and represent specific people in your life or an aspect of your own personality. Examples are King, Queen, Knight and Page.
4. Special cards: These are cards that have a unique message or meaning separate from the other cards. Examples are The Hermit, The Lovers, The Hanged Man and Death. Through exploration, research and practice, tarot readers can come to understand the true meanings of the cards and become better equipped to interpret them accurately. The tarot cards can offer deeper insight into the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead, providing an invaluable tool for spiritual and psycological growth. With a great deal of patience and dedication, anyone can develop an understanding of the tarot and its incredible power to help someone access hidden knowledge and potential.
What are the meanings of each type of tarot card?
The Major Arcana are a set of 22 cards in the Tarot deck which represent aspects of the spiritual journey. They represent significant life events, characters, or symbols. The cards can represent the journey of the soul, from innocence to experience, and are sometimes interpreted as a guide to moral and spiritual growth.
The Minor Arcana are a set of 56 cards in the Tarot deck which represent aspects of everyday life. They consist of four suits: Pentacles, Wands, Cups, and Swords. Each suit has four court cards (Page, Knight, Queen, and King) and ten numbered cards. The Minor Arcana can represent minor influences and events from everyday life, and are used to explore more specific aspects of a reading.