There is so much to learn about Tarot
Many people would love to learn tarot but it is difficult to know where to start. There is so much history to it, so much to interpret from it, so many decks to choose from, and there are many different approaches to reading the tarot. The best way to approach it is gently, because you don’t need to know absolutely everything about every aspect of it.
On different pages on this website you will find information on tarot, such as Tarot Card Meanings, Spreads, About Tarot Cards, Tarot Reading, about the Deck We Use, not to mention buying your first deck……..
This page is to give you some starting blocks so you can choose how to approach it by reading up on the things that interest you most.
The History of Tarot
Its history is lengthy (from C1400) and the true origins of the Tarot has not been proven, to date, but it is clear they started as set of cards for playing games and developed from there. If you want to find out, there is a wealth of information out there on the World Wide Web. A look at Wikipedia might be a good place to start – but I would check out some other sources too. Excellent books are available on the history of tarot as well as many other aspects of it, such as those by Cynthia Giles (I bought a used one for next to nothing – its condition was fine!), Rachel Pollack and Mary K Greer – all have excellent reputations. You can read as little or as much as you wish depending on what it is about tarot that interests you.
Do I need Qualifications to read Tarot cards?
You don’t need any qualifications. But to read the cards really well you will need to practice – which isn’t an endurance test. Reading Tarot can be a great hobby and you will be surprised at the interest and amazement that doing a tarot reading for a friend can produce – even on a very basic level. The more you do – the more you get out of it. You can read the cards on a leisure/personal basis or you can take it much further and perhaps make a little business out of it, depending on the quality of your reading skills.
How do people choose their Tarot decks?
That is purely a matter of choice – it is what appeals to you. There is a forum on a very good website called Aeclectic.net where all aspects of tarot is discussed including decks – our deck is reviewed on there too. We have put some information on the decks we have worked with in the past here, although we use our own deck, The Tarot House Deck, now.
How do people set up their tarot reading area?
This is purely a personal choice, yet again, and there is absolutely no right or wrong way to set up an area to do a reading.
If you consider that it takes some time and concentration to do a reading then it is obvious that you will need to be comfortable. Traditional tarot cards are quite a large size – about the size of an iphone, so putting the cards out in a spread can take up space. A dining or kitchen table is as good as any other place (so long as you can get quiet time to read the cards) and a comfy chair helps relax the reader and it is all about having a relaxed and focused attitude.
Getting privacy is the most important thing; being disturbed during your train of thought in a reading can be frustrating, so finding a little space in a bedroom or study area would be ideal.
Then it is all about the ambience and what will help you be relaxed but focused; if you are lucky enough to have a permanent place to read, you can set up a lovely little area which is always ready to sit down in and read the tarot. Here are some suggestions of what readers may use to enhance the tarot reading experience:
Many people will use specifically made tarot cloths to lay the cards on but any decent size square of a nice material will suffice too.
It is generally accepted that tarot cards can pick up energies from other people, so it makes sense to keep your deck safe in a tarot bag or tarot box if you don’t want other people picking them up and handling them. It is also good for keeping all the cards together safely – if a card or two goes missing you are unlikely to be getting absolutely true readings. Our tarot deck comes with a tarot bag included in the price, which is worth considering!
There are hundreds of crystals to choose from and many can help focus your thoughts, but they are not absolutely necessary during a reading, though even just one or two small crystals might help get you into the zone – my favourites are rose quartz and clear quartz. I also like the odd Tiger’s eye – but that is just me.
Well, again, you might want beautiful candles in a full sized candelabra or a few little tea lights set in appropriate holders. Candle flames have a calming effect and they can help us connect to energies that may assist us – such as angels and spirit guides, if you like to ask for their help.
Incense sticks create an other worldly feel whilst reading, but many can kick out a lot of smoke and not so much aroma. We find the Nag Champa incense sticks delightful in terms of smell and less smoke. You will also need an incense stick holder so you don’t set your house on fire!
This is purely your choice – a representation or two of whoever or whatever inspires you would enhance your reading area, so that might be pictures of family, flowers, pets or angels, religious icons and/or ornaments of fairies, dragons, skulls, unicorns or whatever sparks your intuition (There’s always your birthday and Christmas list to add to 🙂 ).
These can be useful to catch any excess energy floating around. Getting deep into a reading can be draining, and connecting with other peoples’ energies needs a place to drain, if you like. There is something very comforting in a beautiful dreamcatcher, too, because they are so beautiful to look at.
Many people use a journal or workbook to jot down key things to be remembered – perhaps about certain cards, or combinations of cards, that strike a chord. Journals are also good places to note names and tips/hints from the internet that crop up during interaction on Social Networking pages, and the like, that may come in useful.
We hope this page has shown you that, although the layers seem impenetrable whilst looking at all that is Tarot, it is really quite simple. Just start with what sparks your interest……a tarot deck maybe? Then read around and research, at leisure, as you grow with your deck. You will soon be asked to do tarot readings from family and friends, and who knows where that will lead?