The Minor Arcana

I wrote about the Major Arcana in my last post. Today I will address the Minor Arcana.

The Minor Arcana consists of 56 cards, divided into four suits, derived from the older Latin playing card suits most commonly named Wands or Batons, Cups, Swords, and Coins or Pentacles, although there are a wide variety of different names and suit symbols used. 

The deck is related to the deck of 52 playing cards used in most modern card games.

The four suits are associated with the four elements, fire, water, air, and earth.

Wands = Fire
Cups = Water
Swords = Air
Coins or Pentacles = Earth

The Major Arcana

The Major Arcana are a suit of twenty-two cards in the tarot deck, distinguished from the four standard suits collectively known as the Minor Arcana. The word Arcana is derived from a Latin word meaning "secret" or "hidden."

Each card in the Major Arcana depicts a scene, mostly featuring a person or several people, with many symbolic elements. In many decks these are numbered and named, though not all decks have both, and some have only a picture. The earliest decks bore unnamed and unnumbered pictures and the order of cards was not standardized.

The images on the Major Arcana are often very heavy with symbolism, with far more to the illustration than a mere depiction of the card title. The Major Arcana are usually regarded as relating to matters of higher purpose or deep significance, as opposed to the Minor Arcana which relate to the everyday world and matters of immediate significance.

Contemporary Tarot decks are numbered as follows:
 
0              The Fool
1              The Magician
2              The High Priestess
3              The Empress
4              The Emperor
5              The Hierophant
6              The Lovers
7              The Chariot
8 or 11     Justice
9              The Hermit
10            Wheel of Fortune
11 or 8     Strength / Fortitude
12            The Hanged Man
13            Death
14            Temperance
15            The Devil
16            The Tower
17            The Star
18            The Moon
19            The Sun
20            Judgment
21            The World

How Does Tarot Work?

Tarot works with a series of images and symbols, interpreted by the tarot reader. In every tarot reading there is the reader (in this case, me) and the querent. The querent is the customer or the person seeking answers.

Many people believe that it works based on Jungian archetypes and the collective unconscious. Because we all share the same "mind" I am able to intuitively read the images and present the querent with answers that resonate.

Other people believe that the cards are selected and arranged by supernatural forces acting through the reader, and the these supernatural forces also guide the reading.

I believe most tarot readings are a combination of both. There are readings where I feel a strong connecting to the querent and am simply able to intuit the answers they are seeking. Other times I feel a strong push or pull coming from outside forces. Sometimes these forces are coming from my world or my life, and sometimes they are coming from the querent. Some people arrive at their reading surrounded by very strong supernatural energy. I'll bet many people don't know that they go through life followed around by supernatural beings.

Supernatural beings exist for a variety of reasons. They exist as protectors and guides, they exist simply because they choose to and are curious about us, and sometimes they even exist for nefarious reasons.

What is Tarot?

The Tarot deck consists of 78 cards divided into two types, major and minor arcana. I will address each of these in future posts. It is believed that Tarot first entered Europe in the late 14th century, probably from Egypt, with suits very similar to the tarot suits of Swords, Staves, Cups and Coins (also known as disks, and pentacles) The first documentary evidence is a ban on their use in 1367, Bern, Switzerland. Wide use of playing cards in Europe can, with some certainty, be traced from 1377 to the present day. Divination using playing cards is in evidence as early as 1540.

About Saranna

 For the past twenty years I have worked as a psychic and intuitive for various law enforcement agencies around the country. I have helped find hundreds of people and solve dozens of cases. I still maintain contacts with a few of these agencies, and when they need to bring out the big guns, they hire me. I have traveled all over the world.

I also do motivational speaking, life-coaching, tarot readings, and supernatural consulting. I started this blog as a way to provide information about my services, as well as to bring openness and acceptance to the world of the occult.