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Using pattern to interpret Tarot

Updated: Jun 13, 2018

In teaching Tarot, I encourage my students to use their intuition to read the cards, noticing their initial feeling on turning over a card, and any motion, color or other pattern that jumps out at them. We also play with the full deck right from the get-go. I find this develops familiarity with and appreciation of all the cards quickly, and immediately dispels the fear of making a mistake in a reading; there just isn't time to worry about it!

This is a spread a student pulled last night and her interpretation was brilliant. Beyond the messages of the individual cards, there is a message that can be seen when we take them all in at once. There is a large object at the top of each cards which breaks up into smaller pieces toward the bottom. No matter how daunting or big an obstacle or idea seems, as we fall down through it, it becomes manageable; we have a safety net, a cradle and a soft landing. Someone or something will be there to catch us and to help us.

My additional note to her is that since these cards are all reversed, this is an inner process. The "someone" is the querent herself. She has the wisdom and the tools.

I have been a student of Tarot for at least 15 years now and a teacher of Tarot for five. In the beginning, I went strictly by the book, interpretations carefully developed by studying the meanings of the cards as explained by Angeles Arrien, who is wonderful. Over the years I have branched out to other authors and I'm finally ready to tackle Crowley himself. I use his deck; I should know what he has to say about it!. I do find that his message is old school, the very thing he railed against. He got the download of information that forms the foundation of his work in 1904, more than a hundred years ago. There are still many places in the world where repressive religions, sexual taboos, and gender inequality are business as usual. In my world, however, the life-force energy that Crowley and Lady Freida Harris detail with such juiciness, flows with kindness, integrity and authenticity. I find these qualities are the essence of Crowley's Thoth Tarot.

I encourage anyone who is a student of Tarot to listen to their intuition when doing a reading. It's surprising what will come through! And combined with the mind's library of studied Tarot images, symbols and meanings, the result will be amazing.

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