Free Will

January 26, 2010 § Leave a comment

Okay, it’s time to get the ball rolling. And whilst I, the Tarot Doctor, wait patiently (ahem) for someone to consult me, I’m going to talk about free will. Because that’s an issue that always crops up somewhere along the line when you’re learning to read Tarot.

There’s a commonly held misconception that consulting Tarot cards cancels out free will. That is, if you do a Tarot reading asking for advice, you are no longer in control of your destiny.

This is nonsense. Why should asking Tarot cards for advice be any different from asking, say, a friend, or a teacher, or some random stranger on the street? If you’re at the point where you’re asking anyone for advice it’s safe to say you’re having difficulty making a decision yourself. Ergo, any external input can only be a good thing. It helps to spark your brain and gets you out of your same-old same-old thinking patterns.

However, I understand that it is generally more challenging to contemplate resting your fate in the hands of 78 pieces of cardboard (which, for starters, don’t have hands) than in the lovely friendly familiar hands of a friend. The important thing to remember is that you’re not.

When you do a Tarot reading, the idea is not to say “tell me what to do”. The idea is to say “hey, I’m stuck, give me a hand here”, which is a whole ‘nother kettle of fish. You draw a card (or more – often one is best in these situations) and then you ponder it. Your brain looks for ways in which the image on the card relates to your problem. Brains (being intelligent creatures) love making connections. Yours will invariably start firing out lots of different potential interpretations. Take everything your brain throws at you. Jot down some words and phrases if they pop into your head. Something there will prove useful, I promise.

It’s not about which interpretation is “correct” or about what the card is telling you to do; that way lies madness. It’s about what your brain does with what you see. The answer you seek comes from you – not from Tarot cards or the Universe or the big floating bodiless thing in the sky. And that means the question of whether Tarot undermines free will is a non-starter.

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