Interested in learning how to read tarot cards?
Begin by buying a tarot deck. Pick anything you like and feel drawn to. My first deck was The Goddess Tarot by Kris Waldherr (it was the only one I used for well over a year, which helped me to get very familiar with those images). Just make sure you choose a deck that depicts a scene on every card (these are commonly based on the Rider-Waite system). Don’t choose an oracle deck—although these are also wonderful systems of their own, they are unique and are not as universal as tarot.
Once you’ve chosen a deck, and given yourself some time to flip through the images, begin by choosing one card each day. See what you notice in the card, then look up the card’s interpretation. Every deck comes with a small book of basic interpretations; you can also choose a tarot book you like and use that. Multiple interpretations never hurt. And then see what comes up during the day, and how it might relate to that card. At the end of the day, see what you can learn and how you can improve your interpreting skills. You might also keep a journal to record your observations and deepen your understanding.
That’s it! You can go much, much deeper, of course, but this is a good way to get acquainted with the system.
More questions about how to get started? Leave them below! I’m also planning a Tarot 101 tele-course for early 2015—stay tuned!
Some tarot books I recommend:
Tarot for Life: Reading the Cards for Everyday Guidance and Growth by Paul Quinn
Tarot Wisdom: Spiritual Teachings and Deeper Meanings by Rachel Pollack
Seventy-Eight Degrees of Wisdom: A Book of Tarot, also by Rachel Pollack (this one is more in-depth, but it’s a true classic).
Ready to go deeper? Try The Tarot: History, Symbolism, and Divination by Robert M. Place. This is a fascinating exploration of the history of tarot, as well as a unique system of reading the cards.
A few of my favorite decks:
Vanessa Tarot by Lynyrd Narciso (my current go-to deck) is whimsical and full of pop-culture references.
The Halloween Tarot by Kipling West uses pumpkins, ghosts, imps and bats—playful and fun for any time of year.
The Original Rider Waite Tarot Pack is a good choice (this is the deck used by most tarot books).
The Morgan Greer Tarot Deck is wonderful for its simple, clear imagery, especially if you feel overwhelmed by too many symbols.
I also recommend Janet Boyer’s website—she writes in-depth, thorough reviews of many popular tarot decks and always includes pictures of several cards.