So I’ve decided that it is high time for me to really commit myself to this whole tarot thing. It’s been floating around in my mind for so long now, but I’ve always put off a more precise and thought out study of the cards for the much more ‘safe’ option of reading about them on blogs, and the occasional reading when I’m feeling really adventurous. No more trepidation. No more procrastination! Today’s the day I step out of my comfort zone. I said to myself Adam, stop being so scared of putting yourself out there. If you really want to be good at this, you have to try hard. And with that I signed up to The Alternative Tarot Course, created by Beth Maiden at Little Red Tarot 😊. It’s a beautifully designed course where you can discover and develop your own, personal approach to tarot through a series of 8 chapters. Even though I’ve only just had a quick flick through I would definitely suggest you check it out in my link above 😃.
So here we go, Exercise 1 – What is Tarot?
I first came across tarot when…
I truthfully can’t remember the first time I came across the tarot! My childhood was full of all things fantasy, magic, and other worldly so it’s likely that there were many times I would have either seen or read about a tarot reader/reading. I was always happier when immersed in those worlds and somewhere deep inside I’ve always known that at some point in my life’s journey I would take up the tarot.
The reason I want to learn tarot is…
There’s always been a whisper in my ear telling me to read the cards. There have been many instances in my life where I have really wanted to go get a reading, or purchase a deck of cards and teach myself how to read, but there has always been something that held me back. Up until this year that is. My life had changed quite a bit over the previous year, so much so that I was feeling a real lack of stability and there was a weird pervasive feeling in the air. I was really starting to feel disconnected from myself and from those around me. And then one day that whisper came back and I jumped on it!
I want to learn tarot so as to understand myself better, to understand what it is deep down that motivates me and who I truly am. I want to start looking deeper into life’s lessons, and begin to live a life that means something. And of course, as I progress I would love to use the tarot to help others to understand their lives in a deeper, more open way 😊.
Here’s how I feel about learning tarot in three words:
Intrigued, Excited, Enlivened
Tarot’s main purpose (for me) is…
True, deep understanding. Opening up to a side of existence that we as a people have slowly stepped away from as a result of developments in other areas. I no longer want to only look at the surface of things. I feel that having gone through my teen developmental years in the age of social media has made it somewhat natural to be more concerned with what is displayed rather than what is deep underneath the facade. And I no longer want this to be the case. My main goal now is to start truly looking at what is going on, and taking away real meaning from my encounters. So I guess to answer the question tarot’s main purpose for me would be to open up my mind and soul to what is really occurring underneath what my eyes may be seeing.
Separate from this I feel that tarot has helped me to understand my emotional self a little more, which is a good thing because my emotions can easily get the better of me. So to add to the above purpose, I feel that tarot can be a tool to help me through life’s tough spots and stop me from falling into a downward emotional spiral by looking at a situation under a different light.
Here are some things I don’t believe about tarot:
I don’t believe that:
tarot is the work of the devil, for I don’t believe in a rigid dichotomy between good and evil;
tarot can predict the future, for where’s the fun if we don’t have an impact upon what is to be;
it is purely luck that brings the cards out. I believe that the deck has its own energies, and when they are combined with the reader/querents personal energies the cards that are needed at that time are the ones that show themselves.
I think the most important qualities for a tarot reader are:
A willingness to be open to all possibilities.
A compassionate and caring side, as well as the strength to follow the cards suggestions when they may be less then favourable.
An ability to take guidance as simply that, and not get bogged down in a ‘it must go this way’ mentality.
And an ability to sit with and work through hard hitting truths.
In learning tarot, I hope to…
Open my world to more ways of living and a higher understanding of how I affect the world around me. I want to be able to look at situations I’m in in a more well rounded way and at some stage I hope to open other people’s eyes to the hidden realms that tarot can bring forth.
I think my main challenges will be…
I think I have two main challenges.
I quite often take up a hobby, or interest with so much energy and enthusiasm at the start, but this tends to fizzle out as time passes and it generally gets put into the ‘old interests’ cupboard’. I recently found out through an incredibly interesting column called Astro DIY on Little Red Tarot that my birth chart is quite high in cardinal signs but low in fixed signs. This fits me incredibly well for I am often wanting to start new projects (Cardinal) but quite often lack the staying power to see them through (Fixed) ☹️.
My second challenge would be an issue of self-worth. Quite often I’ll find myself stuck in a self-deprecating cycle where I will tell myself that I am not good enough and berate myself for even thinking of pursuing something. And this doesn’t change whether I am doing something I’ve been doing for years or whether I’m trying to start something new.
But I will try to overcome them by…
Perseverance is the main answer to challenge number one. I know that I really do want to become a good tarot reader, so I just need to persevere and stick it out.
As for challenge number two, this is going to take something much bigger. I’ve been trying to work on this problem for some time, and at this stage I haven’t truly overcome it, but I’m hoping that if I persevere and learn more about tarot and how it can help in hard situations such as this, that maybe my answer to this challenge will be found within the tarot itself.
Any further thoughts:
Now I have to admit something to you guys. I generally dislike doing these sought of questionnaires. And having it be the first Exercise in the course I was a little worried. But it was actually really helpful to just sit down and think about why I really want to do this!
So, so far so good. I’m excited to see where I am taken next by The Alternative Tarot Course 😃.
Until next time, live well x