Starting on your Tarot journey can be pretty overwhelming at first! There seem to be so many cards, so many meanings, and so many different ways of interpreting them. However, once you get started you will soon discover the joy of the Tarot and the amazing things that the cards can do for you.
What Is Tarot?
Tarot cards are a deck of cards that are used in fortune-telling and the revealing of the unconscious self. Tarot has been around for centuries, with the first Tarot decks dating back to fifteenth-century Italy.
A standard Tarot deck has 78 cards that are made up of major arcana cards and minor arcana cards. There are 22 major arcana cards and 56 minor arcana cards. The minor cards are normally made up of four suits; cups, pentacles, swords, and wands. Each suite has four court cards; the page, the knight, the king, and the queen. In a Tarot reading, major arcana cards refer to bigger life events, whereas minor cards usually refer to daily or weekly changes.
It is important to note that, while this the standard Tarot deck, there are so many variations of Tarot out there! Some decks will have a different number of cards, and some will have different names of the suits. When learning Tarot, it is advisable to use a standard deck before branching out to the more whacky and out-there decks. However, Tarot is very personal so choose the deck that is right for you! When the decks or cards have different names, they do usually have the same meanings and themes as the standard card.
When reading and learning the Tarot deck, take notice of the imagery and symbolism on the cards. This can give you insight into the meanings behind the cards. When connecting with a new card, since its energy and think about what part of the card you are drawn to. This allows you to develop your knowledge.
A Note on Reversed Cards: Upside-down cards in reading have a different meaning than the regular upright reading. This meaning is included in this guide, but don’t panic! If you are new to a Tarot reading, you may want to ignore the reverse card meanings right now. Furthermore, the meanings are, for the majority, pretty easy to work out. They simply are the reversal of what the upright card means or amplifying its message!
The Tarot Deck: Individual Card Meanings
The Tarot deck consists of five different sections and a total of 78 cards.
- Major Arcana
- Suit of Cups
- Suit of Pentacles
- Suit of Swords
- Suit of Wands
Each card has a so-called ‘negative’ and ‘positive’ association. These are not necessarily bad or good- as there are no such distinctions in the tarot. If a card is drawn in the reverse position, it doesn’t necessarily signify a dark omen, just a slightly different message.
In the guide below, I have offered some suggestions for the keywords associated with both the upright and the reverse. When you go through each card, it can be helpful to have a pen and paper handy to jot down extra keywords that jump to mind for you.
The Major Arcana
When starting with Tarot, it is a good idea to learn the major arcana first before opening up your practice to the minor cards. Practicing spreads with these 22 cards will allow you to develop your relationship and understanding with these cards.
0 – The Fool
- Key Word – Beginnings
The first card of the deck is the Fool and represents a new chapter of your life, full of adventures and exciting ambitions. There is an element of youth in this card. It suggests that you need to see the world through fresh eyes and to be open to new ideas.
This card also signifies risks. It suggests that you may need to leap of faith at some point, but with the right attitude, it will pay off!
- Reversed Meaning – Irresponsibility
Turning over a reversed Fool card suggests that you are making decisions without thinking about them. It represents a recklessness to you that may get you in danger.
1 – The Magician
- Key Word – Creation
This card is all about action and having the power to create your own destiny. The Magician is an exciting and positive power, suggesting that now is the time to focus on you, your skills and talents, and any opportunities that may be around.
- Reversed Meaning – Manipulation
The reversed Magician represents a trickster who might be manipulating you. Be wary.
2 – The High Priestess
- Key Word – Intuition
The High Priestess represents inner wisdom and personal power. She is guiding your psychic powers, allowing you to manifest and grow.
- Reversed Meaning – Repression, Doubt
A reversed High Priestess card suggests that you are not fully accepting and connecting with your inner wisdom. There is doubt and repression, and an element of misguidedness.
3 – The Empress
- Key Word – Nurturing
The Empress reflects femininity and fertility. Connect with your feminine side and embrace nurturing and care. Abundance is heading your way. Projects and finance will flourish soon, with strong creative energy flowing.
- Reversed Meaning – Dependence
There are issues in your home life that desperately need your attention! Perhaps someone is too dependant on you and there is an imbalance in your relationship.
4 – The Emperor
- Key Word – Leadership
The Emperor brings strong masculine energy. He suggests that you, or somebody in your life, have control and power, bringing forth security and balance.
- Reversed Meaning – Domination
A reversed Emperor suggests that you may be power-hungry and too controlling in your life.
5 – The Hierophant
- Key Word – Spiritual Wisdom
The Hierophant reflects spiritual growth and power. Now is the time to learn and be mentored!
- Reversed Meaning – Poor Leadership
If you receive a reversed Hierophant in your reading, this suggests that you must take control of your spiritual path yourself, disregarding leadership and teaching that you may be following.
6 – The Lovers
- Key Word – Choices
The Lovers are bringing you a choice. This decision may be a difficult one, so think carefully. The right decision will create wonderful things for you!
- Reversed Meaning – Conflicts
A reversed Lovers shows that there is an imbalance in your relationships. Dishonesty and conflict are occurring and it needs your attention.
7 – The Chariot
- Key Word – Determination
The Chariot suggests that you are traveling in a new direction and with your energy and power, you will succeed in whatever you do.
- Reversed Meaning – Lack of Control
A reversed Chariot reflects a lack of direction and control. If you get this card in a reading, now is the time to focus on your path and to discover what you truly need to do.
8 – Strength
- Key Word – Courage
Strength reflects your own personal power and your ability to overcome obstacles in life. If you get this card in a reading, it may be a sign that soon you need to connect with your strength and courage.
- Reversed Meaning – Weakness
When reversed, Strength reflects a weakness within you. You are holding yourself back and need to recognize the power within!
9 – The Hermit
Key Word – Introspection
When the Hermit is drawn, now is the time to seek knowledge from within. Take time to reflect, to be alone with your thoughts, and to use your wisdom to grow.
- Reversed Meaning – Loneliness
A reversed Hermit reflects loneliness. You feel unsupported by your friends and family and need to reach out for help.
10 – The Wheel of Fortune
- Key Word – Fate
Things are changing in your life and luck is on your way! This card reflects the cosmic wheel of fate and the powers of the universe.
- Reversed Meaning – Bad Luck
When the Wheel is reversed, it suggests that your challenges are not in the past. However, soon the Wheel of Fortune will turn and you will get a good energy that you need.
11 – Justice
- Key Word – Balance
The Justice calls for honesty and tells you that any unfairness in your life will soon be addressed. Balance and harmony are coming your way.
- Reversed Meaning – Unfairness
Now is the time to examine your own actions. Are you being fair to those around you? Are people being unfair to you? Relationships, career, and home life can all soon become a problem if there is inequality and imbalance within these aspects of your life.
12 – The Hanged Man
- Key Words- Transition
The Hanged Man asks for a new perspective. It calls you to find new ways of looking at the world to get the ball rolling! However, this card does highlight the importance of waiting and meditating on your situation. Things will soon become clearer.
- Reversed Meaning – Rigidity
When the Hanged Man is reversed, it is warning you about your expectations and your outlook on life. Are you too set in your ways to see the wonders of the world?
13 – Death
- Key Word – Transformation
The Death Tarot signifies the end of one life and the beginning of another. Transformation and growth are on the horizon for you and a new way of living will soon appear.
- Reversed Meaning – Anxiety
A reversed Death card suggests that you are hesitant to change. You are reluctant to let go, but you need to grow.
14 – Temperance
- Key Word – Balance
Temperance calls for you to be calm and collected right now. It is important to manifest harmony and balance in order to be your best possible self.
- Reversed Meaning – Moderation
A reversed Temperance card is often seen as a warning. Check-in on yourself and address any imbalance that might be in your life.
15 – The Devil
- Key Word – Temptation
The Devil often reflects the Devil within. It asks you to change destructive behavior and to face greed, temptation, and enslavement.
- Reversed Meaning – Freedom
The message of a reversed Devil card is hopeful and suggests that you are breaking free from the things that are holding you back.
16 – The Tower
- Key Word – Paradigm Shift
The Tower represents sudden change. There is confusion and conflict, and beliefs are questioned. Only you will be able to work out the answers.
- Reversed Meaning – Fear of Change
A reversed Tower hints at the reluctance within. You are fearful and hesitant of change and are not facing up to your situation.
17 – The Star
- Key Word – Inspiration
This wonderful card reflects hope and newness. You are the star, and you have the power to express yourself and be who you really are.
- Reversed Meaning – Giving Up
In the reversed position, the Star suggests anxiousness and a loss of faith. Now is the time to look within yourself and work on your self-esteem. You are a bright star!
18 – The Moon
- Key Word – Illusion
This Moon is often seen as a warning. Something is not as it seems at first, and you must be cautious of those around you. You may not be experiencing the truth.
- Reversed Meaning – Avoidance
If you pull a reversed Moon, you are avoiding seeing the truth. Situations and events are pushed to the back of your mind, and this is affecting your happiness.
19 – The Sun
- Key Word – Success
Now is the time to bask in the sun! You have a lot of success on the horizon, and you have earned it. It is a card full of bright energy and growth.
- Reversed Meaning – Negativity
A reversed sun suggests that you are not seeing the goodness in life. There is so much wonder on offer, and the Tarot is reminding you of this!
20 – Judgement
- Key Word – Resolution
The Judgement Card is asking you to come to a conclusion about your past or current self. Now is the time to let go, to resolve things, and to turn yourself to the future.
- Reversed Meaning – Stuck
When reversed, this card suggests that you are lacking a resolution to a situation. You need to break free, learn from the past, and move on.
21 – The World
- Key Word – Completion
The final card of the major arcana is the World card and this card represents completion and triumph. Success is on your way!
- Reversed Meaning – Blockage
A reversed World card means that you need to complete a chapter of your life, but you are unable to. You are blocked. What is causing this blockage?
The Suit of Cups
The Suit of Cups is governed by Water. It deals with relationships, connections, and emotions, guiding us through any issues or problems we have in life.
Ace of Cups
- Key Word – Love
The Ace of Cups reflects a new beginning in regards to love. There is passion and growth on the horizon!
- Reversed Meaning – Neglect
A reversed Ace of Cups suggests that there is neglect and blockage in your love life. You are not allowing things to grow.
Two of Cups
- Key Word – Harmony
The Two of Cups represents harmony and peace in your emotional relationships. There is an understanding between you and your partner, and stability is underpinning your relationship.
- Reversed Meaning – Stress
A reversed Two of Cups suggests relationship stress and asks you to turn to your inner wisdom to understand your partner more.
Three of Cups
- Key Word – Celebration
Now is the time for a party! The Three of Cups brings carefree energy and a very positive vibe.
- Reversed Meaning – Indulgence
A reversed Three of Cups suggests that you may be at risk of over-indulging in your celebrating. Take time out to reconnect with your body and mind.
Four of Cups
- Key Word – Boredom
Pulling a Four of Cups in reading reflects boredom in your emotional life. You may be unsatisfied in your relationship and the Tarot is telling you that you must address this.
- Reversed Meaning – Introspection
A reversed Four of Cups suggests that a time of introspection is needed for you to understand what you really need from your relationships.
Five of Cups
- Key Word – Regret
The Five of Cups is the card of regret and loss. Perhaps things haven’t gone the way that you have wanted. But, now is the time to move on and refocus your attention.
- Reversed Meaning – Recovery
A reversed Five of Cups has a positive meaning as it tells you that you are overcoming personal setbacks and are now making the moves in the right direction.
Six of Cups
- Key Word – Innocence
The Six of Cups calls you to connect with your inner child. Recall happy childhood memories. Can you learn from them? Is anything from your childhood relevant right now?
- Reversed Meaning – Living In The Past
When the Six of Cups is reversed, the Tarot is warning you that living in the past can be harmful. It is time to move on.
Seven of Cups
- Key Word – Opportunities
The Seven of Cups brings you new and exciting opportunities. Be alert, though, and make your choices wisely.
- Reversed Meaning – Deception
A reversed Seven of Cups comes with a warning. There are choices to make, but be wary. Some options may not be as all they seem.
Eight of Cups
- Key Words – Departure
It may feel as if something is missing right now. Is it time to walk away from something that is not right?
- Reversed Meaning – Inner Wisdom
A reversed Eight of Cups reflects a decision to walk away but wants you to know that only you can make this choice. Listen to your inner wisdom.
Nine of Cups
- Key Word – Happiness
The Nine of Cups suggests that happiness is on your way! A wish will come true, and you just have to sit back and enjoy it.
- Reversed Meaning – Narcissism
A reversed Nine of Cups asks you to check yourself. Are you being too materialistic right now? Is narcissism plaguing you?
Ten of Cups
- Key Word – Prosperity
The Ten of Cups is a really positive card and shows the benefits of love. Security and happiness are on your way and don’t forget to thank the universe for your peace.
- Reversed Meaning – A Family Issue
Happiness is so near, but something is blocking it. Now is the time to address any issues within your relationships.
Page of Cups
- Key Meaning – Love News
The page is a messenger and is bringing you news about your emotional life. Creativity is flowing and there is a youthfulness to your energy.
- Reversed Meaning – Immaturity
A reversed Page of Cups reflects an emotional immaturity. Is this you, or someone else in your life?
Knight of Cups
- Key Word – Romance
This card is probably the most romantic card of the deck, suggesting that new love, new friends, or a new way of living, is on the horizon. Keep your mind and heart open!
- Reversed Meaning – Disappointment
A reversed Knight of Cups is not a great sign and suggests that the romantic ideal that you are chasing is not real. Heartbreak and unrequited love might soon be a reality for you.
Queen of Cups
- Key Word – Sensitivity
The Queen of Cups reflects a sensitive and nurturing woman. There is loving energy and a great deal of warmth.
- Reversed Meaning – Insecurity
A reversed Queen of Cups suggests insecurity in your relationships.
King of Cups
- Key Word – Wisdom
Now is the time to listen to the advice in regards to matters of the heart. The King of Cups is a sensitive and thoughtful man and one to follow.
- Reversed Meaning – Instability
There is somebody in your life that you need to be wary of. They are emotionally unstable and ultimately unhelpful to your happiness.
Suit of Pentacles
The suit of pentacles is governed by the element of earth and reflects material goods, money, and property.
Ace of Pentacles
- Key Word – Prosperity
The Ace of Pentacles predicts you getting what you really wish for. It suggests contentment and happiness in your life.
- Reversed Meaning – Materialism
A reversed Ace of Pentacles is asking you to reflect on your motives and attitudes towards money and gain. Are you too materialistic and neglecting the other important things in your life?
Two of Pentacles
- Key Word – Balance
Now is the time for moderation and balance regarding your money. Be ready and organized for whatever comes next!
- Reversed Meaning – Imbalance
A reversed Two of Pentacles comes with a warning. It is a reminder to not be irresponsible with your money and to make sure you are organized with your finances.
Three of Pentacles
- Key Word – Collaboration
Working with others is the key to success right now, with different points of view all coming together to make something wonderful.
- Reversed Meaning – Disharmony
When reversed, this card suggests that your team is not working together correctly. Perhaps certain people are not pulling their weight.
Four of Pentacles
- Key Word – Security
If you have had financial difficulties in the past, this card suggests that soon there will be stability. Make sure you are being careful with your money and everything will fall into place.
- Reversed Meaning – Greed
When reversed, the Four of Pentacles reflects a greedy and materialistic person. Could this be you?
Five of Pentacles
- Key Word – Struggles
Unfortunately, this card suggests that financial struggles are coming your way. But, you will get the support you need. You just need to ask for it.
- Reversed Meaning – Recovery
If you have suffered financially recently, a reversed Five of Pentacles is telling you that now is the time for recovery and growth. However, never let go of the values that you have learned through hardship.
Six of Pentacles
- Key Word – Generosity
The Six of Pentacles implifies that flow of money is coming your way through the generosity of others. Remember to be thankful!
- Reversed Meaning – Dependency
Are you financially dependent on someone or are they dependent on you? Whatever the situation, it needs to be resolved as neither of you is growing right now.
Seven of Pentacles
- Key Word – Hard Work
You may be feeling tired right now, but this card is telling you that your goals are in sight. You just have to put in the work, and everything will fall into place.
- Reversed Meaning – Procrastination
Are you disheartened in your career and don’t enjoy the work? The Tarot knows and is asking you to take a look and work out what you really want.
Eight of Pentacles
- Key Word – Achievement
The Eight of Pentacles suggests that money is coming your way thanks to your hard work! Your ambition and talents are giving you everything you need.
- Reversed Meaning – Overwork
Are you feeling trapped and overworked right now? Your job might be harming your spirit, and you need to change this!
Nine of Pentacles
- Key Word – Comfort
This is a time of financial security. Be proud of your achievements!
- Reversed Meaning – Vanity
When reversed, the Nine of Pentacles is calling your ego out. Pride is important, but too much pride can be harmful.
- Key Word – Inheritance
A loving relationship will bring you material wealth and a foundation built on love will bring you happiness.
- Reversed Meaning – Family Feuds
Is there an issue in your family life that is harming your wellbeing? Conflict over money and property can cause long-lasting resentment when not addressed.
Page of Pentacles
- Key Word – Manifestation
A new career or job goal is coming your way, and now is the time to grow! Follow your dreams and stick to your goals.
- Reversed Meaning – Entitlement
When reversed, the Page of Pentacles reflects an entitled and workshy person. Could this be you?
Knight of Pentacles
- Key Word – Consistency
The Knight of Pentacles is applauding you for your planning and patience. You are a strong and diligent person, and your attitude will allow you to flourish.
- Reversed Meaning – Complacency
Can you be stubborn and lazy sometimes? Because it might soon become a problem for you! Remember, strength and willingness goes a long way in the world.
Queen of Pentacles
- Key Word – Mindful
When the Queen of Pentacles shows up in a reading, you should be proud of your financial management. You are thoughtful with money, and this gives you and your loved one’s stability.
- Reversed Meaning – Neglect
When reversed, the Queen of Pentacles suggests that you need to be more mindful with your money. You are neglecting savings and this will soon become an issue if not addressed.
King of Pentacles
- Key Word – Abundance
Money and stability are coming your way. Enjoy!
- Reversed Meaning – Greed
If the reversed King of Pentacles appears in a reading, you must take a good look at your attitude towards money. Greed is harmful to you and those around you.
Suit of Swords
The Suit of Swords governs the intellect, your beliefs and attitudes, and how you make decisions. It is ruled by the element of air and assists us in how we act.
Ace of Swords
- Key Word – Success
The Ace of Swords suggests that you are making sound decisions right now and because of this, you will soon find success. You think clearly and act with confidence and honesty.
- Reversed Meaning – Destruction
When reversed, the Ace of Swords suggests that you are making very unhelpful decisions. It calls for you to examine your life and the way you act.
- Key Word – Stalemate
There is a difficult decision to be made right now, and you don’t know what to do. Loyalties are conflicted and you may be ignoring the truth. Take your time to think.
- Reversed Meaning – Deception
The Tarot is calling you to look deep within and listen to your intuition. You are being deceived by someone.
Three of Swords
- Key Word – Pain
If pulled in a reading, this card is reflecting your sorrow. Things are clear, and the truth hurts. But remember, it is now time to grow.
- Reversed Meaning – Self-Doubt
When reversed, the Three of Swords is asking you to examine how you treat yourself. Are you negative and self-critical? Does this lead to self-sabotage?
Four of Swords
- Key Word – Rejuvenation
The Four of Swords is telling you that you need to rest. Take time out for yourself and recover from the recent chaos and stress that you have endured.
- Reversed Meaning – Breaking Point
When reversed, the meaning of the Four of Swords is amplified. You are at breaking point and you must take care of yourself!
Five of Swords
- Key Word – Conflict
There is a battle brewing. You may win, you may lose, but remember; time heals all pain.
- Reversed Meaning – Compromise
When reversed, the Five of Swords is questioning the conflict that you are enduring. Does it matter? Is it time to let go?
Six of Swords
- Key Word – Moving Forward
This card is telling you that you are moving on from conflict and stress and that it is the best thing to do. You are entering a phase of peace and happiness.
- Reversed Meaning – Stuck
A reversed Six of Swords is telling you that you are ready to move on, but you are finding it hard. Only you know what you need to do to get the healing you deserve.
Seven of Swords
- Key Word – Betrayal
A card with a warning, Seven of Swords is telling you that you need to be very aware of those around you right now. Protect yourself and your belongings.
- Reversed Meaning – Giving Up
When reversed, this card is calling you out on your attitude! Do you give up too easily? Are you the dishonest person in your life?
Eight of Swords
- Key Word – Helpless
The Eight of Swords reflects a feeling of being trapped. However, you can release yourself and soon you will be free.
- Reversed Meaning – Take Control
The reversed meaning of the Eight of Swords is much like the upright meaning, however, it is emphasizing your attitude towards your situation. You need to take control and stop being so self-sabotaging!
- Key Word – Anxiety
Your worries and stressors are having a huge impact on your life right now, and you need to deal with them. It is time to focus on yourself and what you need to do to be happy.
- Reversed Meaning – Turmoil
When reversed, the meaning of the card is amplified. You are going through great pain right now, but things can only get better.
Ten of Swords
- Key Word – Loss
The Ten of Swords reflects painful endings. However, with every ending, there is a new beginning. Things are hurting right now, but soon you will get clarity.
- Reversed Meaning – Perseverance
A reversed Ten of Swords is showing you that you can cope, even though you don’t feel like it right now. You have the power and spirit to overcome anything.
Page of Swords
- Key Word – New Ideas
Action thought, and communication is on your side right now. Ambitions come closer with a new way of looking at things.
- Reversed Meaning – Defensive
When reversed, the Page of Swords suggests that you are hiding your true self, goals, and thoughts. This is holding you back.
Knight of Swords
- Key Word – Bravery
You are driven and determined to get to where you want to be. Things might seem chaotic to others, but you know that you are on the right track.
- Reversed Meaning – Restlessness
When reversed, the Knight of Swords reflects a restless and frustrated person. You know where you want to be, but something is holding you back.
Queen of Swords
- Key Word – Independence
The Queen of Swords is a strong woman, encouraging and supportive. These qualities exist in you. Embrace your independence.
- Reversed Meaning – Carelessness
Can you be careless with your words and actions? Or has somebody been careless to you? Remember to think before you speak.
King of Swords
- Key Word – Logic
You are an ambitious person, with a lot to give the world. Now is the time to listen to your head and think logically about your decisions.
- Reversed Meaning – Irrational
When the King of Swords is reversed, it is asking you to take time out to assess your behavior. You may be thinking or acting irrationally and this is causing issues in your life.
Suit of Wands
The Suit of Wands is governed by the element of fire and shows us our desires. These cards reflect our inspiration, creativity, and spirituality.
Ace of Wands
- Key Word – Passion
New ideas, passion, and inspiration are in abundance right now! The Ace of Wands indicates a fresh start is happening, and good things are coming your way.
- Reversed Meaning – Delays
There are delays to plans right now, and projects might be abandoned. This can be difficult for you, but soon things will start to move again!
Two of Wands
- Key Word – Plans
The Two of Wands suggests that now is the time to make plans and move forward in your life. A partnership and working with others can make things even better!
- Reversed Meaning – Confusion
When reversed, the Two of Wands reflects confusion and indecisiveness. It asks you to examine your goals in life and the journey that you need to take to achieve them.
Three of Wands
- Key Word – Action
Now is the time for action! Adventures await and you will be busy with thriving projects and friendships.
- Reversed Meaning – Comfort Zone
When reversed, the Three of Wands is asking you to step out of your comfort zone. There are delays to your plans and you need to work out what is causing them.
Four of Wands
- Key Word – Celebration
The Four of Wands suggests that you are going to soon be rewarded for your hard work. Happiness is around the corner, with a strong sense of place and home.
- Reversed Meaning – Feeling Unheard
Do you feel ignored in your family home? There is disharmony in your life, but you need to speak up! Communication is key.
Five of Wands
- Key Word – Competition
You are surrounded by strong opinions and characters and may feel a bit overwhelmed! However, a bit of friendly competition is good and soon you will find your voice and place amongst everyone else.
- Reversed Meaning – Internal Conflict
When reversed, the competition that the Five of Wands represents is within yourself. There is conflict and upset, and you are unsure of your own character.
Six of Wands
- Key Word – Victory
The Six of Wands is letting you know that you deserve the success that is on your way! Take pride in your accomplishments and bask in your own glory.
- Reversed Meaning – Failure
When reversed, this card reflects delayed accomplishments and suggests things aren’t really going to plan. But, hold tight and stay on the right track! Soon, things will start to look up.
Seven of Wands
- Key Word – Courage
There are challenges in your way right now, but with your courage and conviction, you will get through these hard times.
- Reversed Meaning – Exhaustion
You are carrying a lot of burdens right now and it seems to be overwhelming you. Make sure you are looking after yourself and putting yourself first when needed.
Eight of Wands
- Key Word – Movement
The Eight of Wands brings change and progress. It reflects a time of communication and growth.
- Reversed Meaning – Delay
The progress right now is slow and there may be restrictions in your way. But, keep going and you will get to your destination.
Nine of Wands
- Key Word – Strength
This card is all about strength and stamina. You have struggled and had to deal with numerous difficulties. But, the Tarot reflects your amazing perseverance.
- Reversed Meaning – Stubbornness
When reversed, the Nine of Wands is asking you to look within yourself and bring forth the strength that you know you have.
Ten of Wands
- Key Word – Burdens
The Ten of Wands appears when you are struggling. You are carrying a lot on your shoulders right now, and your responsibilities are overwhelming. Look after yourself, and everything else will fall into place.
- Reversed Meaning – Release
Some of the burdens that you carry are not needed. You must reflect on your life and what is necessary and what is not.
Page of Wands
- Key Word – Good News
The Page of Wands suggests that good news is on your way. Be open with the universe and communicate with those around you.
- Reversed Meaning – Bad Intentions
It is important to be wary of those around you right now. A charming loudmouth may appear to have good intentions, but this is not the case.
- Key Word – Energy
There is a huge spark of energy in your life, with events and progress speeding up. Be bold and courageous.
- Reversed Meaning – Creative Block
You may be feeling stuck right now creativity and career-wise. However, this will soon change and the action will begin.
- Key Word – Creativity
Now is the time to be creative! Ideas are growing and a fire within is burning.
- Reversed Meaning – Control
Do you feel controlled by other people? Perhaps your creativity is not flourishing as it should? A reversed Queen of Wands is telling you to check in on your creative spirit and to do exactly what you need to do.
King of Wands
- Key Word – Leadership
The King of Wands reflects a leader. You have the ability to inspire others and have a clear vision.
- Reversed Meaning – Restriction
When reversed, the King of Wands is still a leader. However, there are restrictions on what he can do. It is time to work out what these restrictions are and what you can do about them.
How Does the Tarot Work?
Now that you have the generalized keywords, you can begin to get a sense of the card. These keywords are not set in stone. I encourage you to jot down a couple that might spring to mind for you.
The cards’ images are the keys, and they help you to project your own story onto it. There are millions of potential stories, but you choose a specific one. The question is why? Why that specific story out of a possible million? The answer, once again, directs us towards the subconscious.
It is part of human nature to project unconscious thoughts, fears, and other material onto the immediate environment. It is natural to perceive life through a lens of our own creation, but it typically is created by the inner state, influenced by experiences.
So, the question should shift from “what is Tarot able to do?” to: what can we do with the tarot?
The answer can be found when we consider the subconscious layers of the mind. We all have a deep vault of memory within us and a hyper-connected level of awareness. But, our conscious mind is not always connected to it as it seems separate from our everyday experiences.
We have yet to grasp the entirety of our subconscious minds. We can, however, set out as intrepid explorers throughout its landscape. Tarot can be a tool as you learn to explore your unconscious. The same can be said for meditation, psychotherapy, visualization, dream interpretation, etc.
Where Does Tarot Come From?
The tarot is shrouded with mysterious origins. What we do know is the tarot seems to have its roots in 15th century Italy where they were used as a popular card game. Society’s wealthy would commission artists to design beautiful decks. The Visconti-Sforza deck can be traced back to around 1450 and is one of the earliest decks as well well as the most complete deck.
But it was in the 18th and 19th centuries that the tarot’s significance was realized. Influence students of the occult began to notice the similarities between elements of the card’s images and designs with great significance. These students believed the “true” history could be connected to Hermetic Philosophy, Kabbalah, alchemy, Egyptian mysteries, and other mystical origins.
Students continued studying these significant connections and the tarot was introduced into secret societies like the Golden Dawn, where mystical practices were used to uncover their meaning and significance.
The Tarot has always had its roots in the occult, however, if we turn our attention to more modern societies, perspectives, and cultures, we see how it has been adapted to include a wide range of perspectives.
What is the Tarot?
The tarot can be considered a tool for divination. But it’s not all about gazing into the future. More than foreseeing events, tarot can be useful for understanding yourself and your life’s journey.
With traditional tarot, you have a seeker and a reader. The seeker is the person looking for answers or guidance, while the reader can interpret the cards.
How to Read the Tarot?
The seeker will shuffle and cut the deck of cards. The reader lays the cards out in the selected spread or pattern. Each card within the spread will have a specific position, and this position is significant and will sway the card’s meaning. The reader then combines the position meaning with the individual card meaning, along with potential combinations of cards, and this will ultimately shed light on the seeker’s question.
While it may sound slightly daunting, it is quite a simple process. To begin with, it’s essential to understand the meaning of each card. From there, you can begin to understand the position significance in the spread.
The cards all have intriguing images, and they become a tool for our projection and subconscious. The keywords and meanings listed above are collective components, but the point is to understand how you relate to them. The ‘trick’ of the tarot is to merge the collective with the personal. Each card is seen in your own way. The way you perceive them shows a glimpse into your inner awareness, giving readers the ability to see parts of your inner life. Don’t get too hung up on the collective keywords listed above, just allow them to be the keys to open the doors to your own perception of them.
In the articles that follow, you’ll get to glimpse further into the tarot as card placements in the different spreads offer even more guidance and meaning.
Hopefully, this guide has helped you on your Tarot journey and taught you a lot about the magic of the Tarot. But what are some FAQs about Tarot Card Meanings?
Question: Can Tarot Tell the Future?
Answer: Some people believe that Tarot cards can tell the future. This can be the case, but a lot of people practice the cards to connect with the subconscious. Tarot allows you to understand yourself and your relationship with the universe. However, it is up to you and how you practice the Tarot.
Question: What Is The Difference Between Major Arcana Cards and Minor Arcana Cards?
Answer: The 22 major arcana cards often refer to big life events, whereas the 56 minor arcana cards show day-to-day changes and events.
Question: Do I Have To Be Gifted My First Tarot Deck?
Answer: No! This is an old tradition and many modern people who practice Tarot agree that you can buy your first Tarot deck to get started.
Question: How Do I Shuffle Tarot Cards?
Answer: How you shuffle the cards is up to you, as long as you connect your energy with the deck.
Question: What If The Meaning of the Cards Doesn’t Make Sense?
Answer: If you read a card for yourself or someone else and you don’t seem to understand the meaning, try looking at the card from a new angle. You may also wish to pull further cards out to understand what the Tarot is telling you.
Question: Can I Read My Own Cards?
Answer: Yes, and you should! Doing daily card exercises or readings for yourself can really help you connect with the cards and learn their different meanings.
Question: Is the Tarot magic?
Answer: No, the tarot is not sorcery, nor is it a tool for ‘sorcery.’ The tarot is simply a deck of cards that uses creativity and suggests a method to bring out your subconscious. Think of Mr. Freud and his thoughts on psychoanalysis, except, more creative.
Question: Can a beginner use the tarot?
Answer: The tarot can be used by anyone. The tarot doesn’t give you any special powers. What it does do, is perhaps lead you to believe that you (or the person reading them for you) has some sort of otherworldly power. The cards use subtle yet effective symbolism to help you and the reader draw connections in your life and your subconscious.
Question: Are tarot cards random?
Answer: This is a tricky one to answer. To get a proper understanding of this, we need to understand what ‘random’ truly entails. The point of tarot, or the understanding, is that we assume we choose the cards which we are meant to see. Our common sense and logical minds will tell us that the cards are chance, and therefore devoid of any special meaning. However, if an act is truly random, then it is the result of a chance interaction of mechanical forces.
There is a set of possible outcomes (or cards to choose), but the one result occurs. To define this as random, we would have to admit no particular reason for this. Additionally, the definition of ‘random’ implies the following two key points:
• The result happened become of mechanical forces
• The result has no meaning
However, the tarot and the act of choosing cards are not solely mechanical. Conscious actions brought me to study the tarot. I consciously chose to do a tarot reading, and you consciously chose to read this article. And when you do a reading, you consciously select the cards. Sure, you did not see the images, but by definition, the cards you choose cannot be random.
Discover The True Meaning of Your Life With Tarot Cards
Tarot is an amazing tool that allows us to understand our true place in the world and what we need to do to succeed. Hopefully, this guide to Tarot card meanings has helped you begin your Tarot journey, allowing you to uncover secrets about your future and your subconsciousness.
Good luck and have fun with the Tarot!