- River Plumb
"Why Tarot?" Pt. 1 My History With the Cards
Updated: Oct 25, 2020
Even though the practice of Tarot has been around for centuries in various forms, from table games to psychotherapy, these cards are still widely misunderstood. The true origin of the cards is lost in the murkiness of time. Fraudulent fortune tellers and horror movies don’t help to diffuse the air of ignorance that surrounds this sophisticated tool. Today, I want to share with you my long relationship with the practice of Tarot, as well as how and why I use the cards for my own personal development and as a coaching tool for others.
Cards: Smith-Waite Tarot Centennial Edition Deck by U.S. Games Systems, Inc.
I was twelve. My world was in disarray. I was struggling with my sexuality and my spirituality, two things which now strongly shape my experience as a individual. I wanted a craft, a mystery that I could learn to unfold. Tarot was the perfect fit. At that time, I had no idea the power of transformation that I held in my hands. I would give readings to my friends and pretend to understand the mysteries of the Universe. I never had the patience to really take the time to learn all 78 cards and their reversals. I was disenchanted with all the books I had found on Tarot. Each author had a different style and I wanted a clear cut path. I decided to follow the advice of an exercise I found in a library book and simply looked at each card and described what I saw. Over time, I began to uncover the layers of meanings for myself. My interest in Tarot flickered on and off as I oscillated between intuitive breakthroughs and frustration. Fast forward to high school. My interest in Tarot became rekindled when my friend’s mom asked for a reading. Numerous readings for her family and friends followed, and I soon realized I had a special inclination towards reading and understanding the symbolism in the cards. I continued giving small readings here and there in college, when I was invited to read at a masquerade ball in the city. I was underage, but they snuck me in to read for the drunken partygoers. That cold, rainy Halloween night was the turning point, a call to dive deeper into the cards. For the last 3 years, I have consciously devoted my free time to the study and practice of Tarot. I now have a large library of Tarot books and an even larger collection of decks. I have made major life decisions, and crafted my business and my life with the cards as tools helping me get out of my own way and see situations with more clarity.
Stay tuned for part two when I discuss my current relationship with Tarot and how I use it as a tool to connect to my intuition and read for myself and others.