There have been tarot card myths for about as long as they have been around. A lot of people believe you need to be a psychic to use them or that they have some sort of magical powers. We are going to bust some of those common tarot myths today. If you are new to tarot reading, understanding what is true and what’s not will make your experience using the cards more enjoyable.

Tarot Card Myth 1: Tarot Cards Are Tools of the Occult

In the past, Tarot cards have been though of tools of the occult, which can spark fear or skepticism who aren’t familiar with them. Let’s bust this myth

Are Tarot cards really part of Occult Practices?

This is a big, fat no. People think that tarot cards are part of the occult, but in reality Hollywood has shaped part of this myth. Movies portray tarot in a scary way. In reality, tarot cards are used for something very different.

Beginnings and Changes over time

The history of tarot cards goes back centuries, starting as a card game in Renaissance Europe before changing into a tool for divination and self-reflection. Since the cards have been around for about 600 years, there have been a lot of changes in how they are used. The images and symbols in tarot decks have roots in art, psychology, and spirituality.

How do we Use Tarot Cards Now?

Today we use the cards as a way to understand ourselves better and grow as a person. They are a reflection of the current energy we are feeling. I first started using tarot cards to help understand why I do certain things. They have helped me grow a lot.

Tarot Card Myth 2: Tarot Readings Can Predict the Future

False! Tarot can’t predict the future. What they can do is help you figure out what different paths you can take in any given situation. We all have free will, which means we control our lives.

Why is this False?

Tarot cards aren’t definitive. As I said, we have free will, so at any moment we can change what we will do next. There is no one way to read the cards like they show in the movies and TV shows. We have all seen the movies where people reading tarot cards are “shown” that something terrible will happen, and then of course, the terrible thing happens. This simply isn’t the way tarot cards are read.

A mysterious scene showing a woman doing a tarot reading with tarot cards and a crystal ball on the table. The woman is in a softly lit room

So What are Tarot Readings?

Tarot readings help us with getting insights int current situations and the different paths we can take. We use the symbols, meanings, and archetypes to help guide us in figuring out our thought process. They help us understand what we are thinking and ask us to think about what will happen when we make choices.

Embracing Self-Awareness and Empowerment

Instead of using tarot cards to predict what will happen, we are better off thinking of them as tools for self growth and to improve confidence in ourselves. When we pause to read the messages the cards give us, we get different perspectives, find out things we didn’t realize about ourselves, and help us make decisions. We should be looking inward to make decisions, not rely on the cards to tell us what to do.


Tarot Card Myth 3: You Need to Be a Psychic to Read Tarot Cards

Nope, not true. We do not have to be psychic in order to read tarot cards. I am not a psychic, instead I rely on my intuition to help guide me when I am reading the cards. As a matter of fact, if someone has this belief, it can actually stop them from growing as a person. Beginners especially will feel like they don’t know enough and will lead to them not using the cards. We don’t need special powers, we have everything we need within ourselves.

Tarot Reading Relies on Interpretation, Not Psychic Powers

Reading tarot cards is more about understanding the symbolism and connecting with your intuition rather than relying on psychic gifts. The images and symbols on tarot cards help to tap into your subconscious mind and inner wisdom. Spending time learning what the cards mean and practicing how they read the cards will be far more helpful to someone becoming good at reading tarot spreads.

Everyone Can Learn Tarot with Dedication and Practice

Anyone can learn to read tarot cards with enough practice. You must be willing to be patient with yourself. It takes a while to understand all the symbolism in the cards. You will get better at reading the cards by using your tarot cards often, better if it is every day. As you build your relationship with your cards, you will learn to trust yourself and the cards when reading them.

A light and airy scene with a mystical feel, depicting a friendly tarot reader's table. The table is adorned with colorful tarot cards spread out,

Tarot card Myth 4: Tarot Cards Are Evil or Satanic

Tarot cards are not evil or satanic. This line of thinking often scares newcomers to the tarot world. There is no reason to be afraid of the cards!

Challenging Misconceptions

The cards are an inanimate object. They can’t move, or spread themselves out. They can’t act evil or like Satan. It is the meaning that we give to the cards that make some think that they are evil.

The Major Arcana cards represent human themes. Using the symbols and images on the cards helps us understand what is going on in our world. They really are like a mirror, reflecting back to us what we are feeling and thinking.

Symbolism and Personal Growth

Each tarot card many layers of meanings that give us guidance and insight into different parts of life. The symbols are like metaphors, helping us to connect with our subconscious and bring out things we didn’t realize about ourselves. This will lead to self growth and help us make good choices.

Understanding that the tarot cards are not evil or satanic leaves us with the ability to have an open mind and use them as part of our journey.

Tarot card Myth 5: Tarot Readings Are Always Accurate

Definitely not. There are several reasons why this is true. There are a lot of factors that go into reading the cards and that can affect the outcome of the reading. As we have talked about, free will rules over a tarot reading.

Factors Affecting Accuracy

There are several reasons why your tarot reading may not t accurate.

  • level of readers experience using the cards
  • how familiar someone is with their deck
  • how good the question is
  • what the persons state of mind is
  • how well they know the symbols on the cards
  • the environment where the reading is taking place
  • do the cards resonate with the situation?

Importance of Open-mindedness

Having an open mind will affect the accuracy of the reading as well. You need to be willing to see the message the cards are trying to give you. When you have an open mind, you are able to read the cards better because you rely on your intuition more. Reading the cards is a collaborative effort between the reader and the person receiving the reading. A lot of the times you will be both the reader and the receiver.

Tealight on a Himalayan Salt Candle Holder Photo by KATRIN BOLOVTSOVA

Joining my Facebook group is another resource to learn more about tarot and manifesting.

Tarot card Myth 6: You Can’t Read for Yourself with Tarot Cards

You absolutely can read cards for yourself. As a matter of fact that is how most tarot readers begin. As a beginner, there is a lot you have to learn before you can do readings for others.

Debunking the Myth

Reading tarot cards for yourself can be eye opening. It will give you insight into yoursef if you let it. Some people thing that personal biases will mess up the reading, I suggest that the cards will challenge those biases. When you do a self reading, you are opening and exploring your own thoughts and emotions.

Benefits of Self-Readings

Assorted Tarot Cards On Table Photo by Alina Vilchenko

  1. Personal Growth: Engaging in self-readings can help you gain a deeper understanding of yourself and your life circumstances. It allows you to reflect on your experiences and make empowered decisions moving forward.
  2. Self-Awareness: By interpreting tarot cards for yourself, you can enhance your self-awareness and emotional intelligence. This practice encourages introspection and mindfulness, leading to personal development and growth.
  3. Learn the Cards: For me, reading for myself has allowed me to learn the cards a lot quicker. If you don’t read for yourself, how are you going to familiarize yourself with your deck and the symbols on the cards.

Tips for Effective Self-Readings

When doing tarot readings for yourself, think about the following tips:

  • Set Intentions: Before shuffling the cards, set clear intentions for your reading. Focus on a specific question or area of your life that you seek guidance on. Don’t ask “What is my new job going to be?” Instead ask “What skills do I need to grow for my next job?” The cards likely don’t know what your next job will be, but they will help you understand how to improve for the next job.
  • Trust Your Intuition: Listen to your inner voice and trust your intuition when reading the cards. Your intuition will give you valuable insights beyond the literal meanings of the cards.
  • Journal Your Readings: Keep a tarot journal to track your readings, interpretations, and the outcomes. Reflecting on past readings can help you track patterns and progress in your personal journey.

Use the practice of self-readings as a powerful tool for self-discovery and empowerment. Trust in your intuition and the cards to guide you on your path of personal growth and self-awareness.

Close-up Photography of Tarot Cards Photo by Enzo Abramo

If I had waited for someone to give me my first deck of tarot cards I would still be waiting!!

Breaking the Myth

Tarot doesn’t have any rules, and that includes the fact that you can, in fact, buy your own first deck. Yes, someone gifting you your first deck is kind and thoughtful, it holds no bearing on how a reading will go. The power of the card lies in your ability to have an open mind, connect with your deck, and the intentions you set.

Tarot Card Myth 7: Someone needs to gift you your first deck

When you are looking for your first deck, pick one one that resonates with you visually and intuitively. I purchased my first tarot deck when I was ready to do so, and I conncected to it as soon as I saw it. I have a Celtic heritage, so when I saw the DruidCraft deck in the store, I thought it was just waiting for me to buy it!

Remember that it’s your energy and intuition that will make a connection with the deck. A Woman Engaged in Fortune Telling Photo by Mikhail Nilov

Frequently Asked Questions

Can tarot readings harm me or my loved ones?

If you treat your tarot cards like you would treat a friend, your deck will not hurt anyone. However, the attitude you or your loved ones have towards tarot readings will affect the outcome of a reading.

Is it true that tarot cards can become ‘attached’ to people?

No, cards don’t have free will, so they can’t become attached to people. Your connection to your cards may be strong because you have developed a relationship though.

Do I need to be spiritual or religious to use tarot cards?

Anyone can use tarot cards, regardless of their beliefs. I have found that I have become more spiritual as I learn about tarot more.

Can tarot readings reveal information about other people’s lives?

Tarot cards are really for people who are looking for help or insights into personal situations. Using tarot cards to look into someone else’s life isn’t ethical. When doing a reading for yourself or someone else, you need to respect other people’s privacy. How would you feel if someone was asking questions about you in a reading and you didn’t know about it?

Is there a ‘correct’ way to interpret tarot cards?

Reading the cards is a personal and intuitive process. There is no right or wrong way to read a card. It depends on your background knowledge, the images, and how you interpret the cards.

What’s next?

I hope you understand some of the myths now. Tarot cards are not just for psychics, you can buy your own deck, and they are not evil.

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