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Where Does Tarot Come From?

How Do the Cards Work?

Tarot cards date back to the 1500s. Their origin is often debated and remains a mystery. It is rumoured that Leonardo Da Vinci introduced the tarot cards to Italian high society, where they were used as a parlor game for years before they were taken up for the purposes of fortune telling.

Occultism had a renaissance in the early 20th century, at which point the popularity of the tarot increased, and 22 cards were added to the deck to enhance its utility as a method for mediumship (illustrated by Pamela Coleman Smith and popularized by Arthur Edward Waite). More recently, in the 1970s, tarot was revived through the surrealist movement. Notably, Salvador Dali was so fascinated by the practice that he produced his own tarot deck.

The language of the cards operates through archetypal imagery, mythological symbolism, astrology and numerology. The energy we put in to a spread is reflected in the cards that turn up, and we may resonate with certain symbols and imagery based on our current emotional disposition and personal situation.

My perspective on how the tarot cards work is always evolving. I believe the cards show us exactly what we need to see, when we need to see it. The tarot cards are effective as a medium for the unconscious mind because they re-frame our current experiences, and it is in the interpretive space between the story presented in the cards and our own story that new understandings can emerge. In this way, we can gain new perspectives, organize our thinking and use this clarity to navigate the challenges in our lives.


What can I expect in a reading?
Does tarot predict the future?

As a tarot card reader and critical theorist, I use tarot as a reflection tool that facilitates introspection to inform decision-making and self-development. I believe that the cards allow us to access the magic within ourselves through our intuition. The cards are not magic, and they cannot solve all of your problems. They simply reflect back to you what you are experiencing, offering new angles to consider.


It is important to feel empowered through the use of tarot - you are not fate's puppet. When we know ourselves, work to heighten our emotional awareness and feel empowered, we make better decisions and take better care of ourselves and our communities.

A tarot reading will not hold back - it will tell you where your current circumstances, attitudes and actions are taking you. Any future position in a tarot spread will reveal the possibilities ahead, but the outcome you choose to pursue is your responsibility.

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