This is a great question, and an important one. You are receiving insight and advice, and as helpful as it may be, or as “spot on” as you think it is, it’s important to know where this advice is coming from. I know quite a few people I would be hesitant to take advice from, so why would I take advice from an invisible source? Who is sitting behind the Tarot help desk?
There are some well-researched ideas, especially among psychoanalysts. Psychoanalysts, such as Carl Jung, who used Tarot in his practice, believe that the Tarot works in a similar manner as a Rorschach ink blot test. The mind sees what it wants to. This disappoints a lot of people, especially those who are really into woo-woo, the paranormal, and the more esoteric among us.
However, the ability for the mind to find answers in a Tarot card, or an inkblot, or a symbol, omen, tea leaves, or just out of thin air is AMAZING! Living beings are magical all by themselves. Your brain wants to help you, it wants you to live your best life. The brain speaks most effectively using symbols, and Tarot cards are full of symbols, making it an excellent tool for this.
Language is very limited when it comes to communicating. Not only are you limited in who you can communicate with, but you are also limited by the number of words in your language. Symbols bypass the language barrier. They show whole ideas and concepts in quickly absorbed pictures.
Some people believe that your higher self is responsible for finding meaning in the cards. Or your spirit-guides, angels, deceased loved ones or the Universe or collective consciousness in general. All of these are valid beliefs. All of these are human constructions for what is actually out there, but that are constructions made of high vibration and good intent and should result in insightful readings. I’m certainly not saying that those things don’t exist, I believe they do, but as human beings we only have a very limited understanding of what these sources actually are.
Now, to play the devil’s advocate, literally, how do we know it’s not the devil (if you believe in that), or a demon, or a negative entity who is feeding you answers? If you believe in helpful entities, you have to also believe in their counterpart after-all. Or if you put all the woo-woo stuff aside, and want to think as a psychoanalyst, how do you know that there isn’t a part of your subconscious that is trying to sabotage your efforts by giving you bad advice?
In my experience, as long as your question to the Tarot follows these rules, you’re probably okay;
1. The intent of your question is for the highest, greatest good. This means you aren’t asking about something that can harm another, give you an unfair advantage or is unethical. Example of a good question: “What do I need to know in order to become a better partner for my spouse?” Example of a bad question: “How do I make so and so fall in love with me?” In the first question, you are wondering how to improve yourself in order to make life better for another. In the second question you are attempting to bend somebody to your will. Your first question is being asked in a higher vibration (good intent) and will attract a higher vibrational answer. The second question is being asked at a lower vibration (selfish intent) and will receive a lower vibrational answer.
2. The answer you receive, whether you like it or not, resonates with you. This means it makes sense to you, and you know in your heart the advice is good. Your intuition is a well-tuned BS meter if you learn to listen to it!
Also, keep in mind, the Tarot, or any divinatory tool, cannot predict the future. It can only shed light on possible outcomes if you continue the path you are currently taking. This means as soon as you do a reading, you are already affecting your future by adding options for yourself. You are not fated for a particular destiny. You have the power to alter your future.
I want you to read that paragraph one more time, because I think it’s important and lays the foundation for a great relationship with the Tarot. So, to repeat in bold, italics, underlined, enlarged, and a more striking font:
“The Tarot, or any divinatory tool, cannot predict the future. It can only shed light on possible outcomes if you continue the path you are currently taking. This means as soon as you do a reading, you are already affecting your future by adding options for yourself. You are not fated for a particular destiny. You have the power to alter your future.”
These are all beliefs I’ve formed after twenty years of working with the Tarot in my daily life, doing readings for myself and others. They’re my opinions and my experiences and work very well for my journey. You may have some other ideas, and I would love to hear them! Also, if you would like me to answer a question of yours concerning the Tarot in a future blog post, please send it to me!
-Jason, Tarot by Jason