Tarot Card Use In The U.S Essay, Research Paper
Dial 1-800-99-Tarot, look familiar? From Kenny Kingston and his group of psychics to Dionne Warwicks psychic friends, we have all seen or heard of the infamous psychic hotlines. Palm readers, to Psychic Advisors, to Tarot readers, they are taking the country by storm. At this point in time, the majority of the urban population have either consulted a psychic advisor, or know of someone who has. The question is, why? . Why has this section of astrology reached this level of popularity in the United States?
To answer the question, many aspects and sections of astrology and fortune telling must be examined. Fortune Telling is the practice of predicting the future through psychic means, such as the interpretation of signs and/or communication with supernatural forces. Many people use astrology as a method of fortune telling. Other methods include palmistry, the practice of interpreting the lines in hands; cartomancy, the prediction of the future using special cards such as Tarot cards: and necromancy, in which people predict the future through communication with the
spirits of the deceased. Some methods of fortune telling involve clairvoyance, the ability to perceive events or objects beyond the range of the senses. Although fortune telling has little support in science, it remains popular in many countries, including the United States.
People have practiced various forms of fortune telling for thousands of years. It became a widespread practice in many ancient societies, particularly among rulers, who often sought advice from fortune tellers. In ancient China, for example, emperors had court astrologers and special diviners who predicted the future using a set of sticks called the I Ching, which are used in a way
similar to Tarot cards.
Tarot is the name given to the oldest playing cards still in common use, both for card games and as the basis of a branch of the fortune telling art. The tarot was brought from the east to Italy in the 14th century by gypsies or returning crusaders. The origin of the cards is obscure, and theories that the tarot is based on the Hebrew alphabet or on Egyptian or Hindu mythology have not been conclusively proved.
The Tarot deck consists of 78 cards, which are divided into two distinct groups. The Minor, or lesser , Arcana, the precursor of the modern deck, is made up of 56 cards divided into four suits. The suit corresponds with the modern clubs suit; cups with hearts; swords with spades; and pentacles (or sometimes coins in certain decks) with diamonds. Each suit has 14 cards, with
numbered cards from ace to ten and four unnumbered face cards: king, queen, knight, and knave. (the four knight cards have been eliminated in the modern deck.)
The Major, or Greater, Arcana consists of 22 cards, each bearing a title and a picture. The symbolism of the Major Arcana has fascinated writers and psychologists, who assume that such pictures as the Hanged Man, the Wheel of Fortune, Judgment, and the Moon are medieval allegorical representations of virtues and vices, and life-and-death dealing forces.Twenty-one of the cards are numbered, the Twenty-second card is the Fool. The Fool is analogous to the modern joker.
In fortune telling, either the full pack or the Major Arcana alone is used, never the Minor Arcana alone. The relationship of one card to another, as laid out in a number of different configurations, is as important as the significance of each individual card.
Today, increasing numbers of people use tarot cards as a tool for self exploration and personal growth. When local high school student Julie Casner was asked why she decided to get a tarot card reading, and how she felt afterwards, she replied I initially set out to get a reading because of curiosity, but was amazed afterwards, its like she read my mind. She told me things about myself, that I had previously forgotten . She was later asked if she felt comfortable in the situation and if she had planned to return for another card reading, to that the reply was: I felt extremely comfortable, the surroundings were rather eerie, like that of a movie, but other than that, its was fine. I would definitely go back again, its an experience I d like to share with my friends as well, I learned more about myself which I didn t know existed until the reading. I recommend that everyone gets at least one Tarot card reading in their lifetime, its definitely something worth trying .
While everyone has their own reasons for seeing a Tarot card reader, their answers to the question , how did it make you feel afterwards? , are generally the same. Out of the 15 people asked this question, 10 of them gave the general response I feel more enlightened and/or It set me in the right direction . While two others claimed it had absolutely no effect in their life style, and would not consider seeing another tarot card reader. As for the other two (a brother and sister group) were rather speechless and only had the vague comment It was cool .
Esmerelda, as she prefers to be called, is currently practicing the art of Tarot in the city of Laguna Hills, California, off of Raymond and El Toro Road. Her fees are $78.00 for one tarot reading. A rather costly reading, but from experience, is definitely worth a try. The money is placed on the table, and from there the readee is instructed to shuffle the cards three times or
until comfortable, the cards are then cut and placed aside. The first card is placed on the table, the reader then concentrates on the card in such a way, it appears the reader is attempting to levitate the card using telekinesis. The meaning of the card is then told to the readee , and incorporated into the readee s life, to see where the problem or solution can be fit. Afterwards, 2 other cards are placed on top of the first card and the same thing is applied. The reader then takes the remaining cards that are drawn and lays them down in a circular manner around the first 3 cards . When asked why she chose the circular method as opposed to other methods,her response was simple, tradition .
How does the Tarot card reader herself view the art of fortune telling and what she does? Here it is, straight from the horses mouth If someone had told me several years ago that I would be using tarot cards today, I would not have believed them. Having been raised in a tradition that taught that such things were “evil,” I tried to stay as far away from them as I could.
Even after I learned to open my mind and not live in fear, I still didn t have much interest in them. I just didn t believe that a deck of cards could predict the future or see into the psychic. Actually I STILL don’t. Yet I use them occasionally for myself, and frequently to assist others. I am sure many of you are now wondering why? Well the reason is because the “magic” ….themiracles…are in the person, both the reader and the person receiving the reading. The cards themselves are just pieces of paper. But when spirit is involved…they guide the hands to shuffle and lay the cards, and
to sense what each card’s message is. It is true that each card has a “standard” meaning, however there can be different aspects to the meaning according to the situation at hand. Also a card can take on a totally different meaning at times,and it is the reader’s ability to sense when that is the
situation that makes it magical.
It is also my opinion that NO READING…even with the power of the psyche, can predict the future. Why? Because the future is not set in stone. Situations, energies, etc. can all be strongly pushing things in a certain direction, but it CAN be changed. This is part of the value of a reading to me. To help you see the obstacles, AND the choices in a situation. Now about the deck itself. Tarot decks are divided into two sections, the Major Arcana, which consist of the first 22 cards. Each card represents a major step in the path of life; things that we all face at one time or another during our journey. These cards have a strong emphasis in a reading. Drawing a Major card should be looked at with extra attention. The minor arcana are the 4 suits, and represent day to day lessons, situations, etc.
In conclusion, its quite obvious that tarot card use and other forms of astrology have become intensely popular, from the Internet, to TV, to street corners, it seems like they re everywhere you go. The question still remains, why? . We live in a stressful time period, full of uncertainty, court cases, domestic disputes, employment troubles, problems with our loves lives,
and a number of other cases. In such a time, the population starts looking for answers and ways to solve their problems. While many of the problems are not as easily solvable as one wishes, he/she is lead astray with no direction and unanswerable questions, this is where the Tarot card reader steps in. While not exactly being the most scientific and accurate answer, it feeds on the hope and
hunger for answers and direction of the person seeking the Tarot card reading. Then again,there s still no logical explanation to just plain out curiosity.