Updated: Dec 5, 2021
Welcome to our weekly tarot card posting!
Here we will uncover the meaning behind each tarot card and the numerous ways to interpret them: past, present, future, upright, etc.
Whether you plan to read solely for yourself or for clients, this Tarot 101 Series will better familiarize you with the meanings of tarot cards. From numerology to the use of different colors and symbolic objects, we will delve into each card and uncover the messages.
I will be using the original Rider-Waite Tarot deck as reference, however you can use almost any other deck as they follow the same theme/message. We will begin with the major arcana and work our way into the minor arcana. The major arcana consists of 22 cards, each one showing a level of ascension in your spiritual journey. The remaining 56 cards comprise the minor arcana, which reflects earthbound, everyday matters.
In the minor arcana we have the suit of cups representing our emotions; pentacles representing people, places and things; swords representing our thoughts and communication; and lastly, wands representing our actions. We will further clarify the suits when we begin the minor arcana. Getting back to the major arcana, this week we start with The Fool.
Card of the week: The Fool
(Sagittarius, Pisces, Aries)
The Fool is the very first card in the major arcana, and as we continue you’ll see that’s not by coincidence. The original depiction of The Fool was a jester/carnival entertainer who was linked to Dionysus, the Greek god of theatre, wine, and religious events (Alexander and Shannon 59). This is why The Fool card comes first; this is the beginning of your spiritual journey. In some other decks, he is shown as dejected and sorrowful, almost as if to depict the repercussions of having such a jovial outlook towards life.
It wasn’t until 1909 when Smith created the Rider-Waite tarot deck, in which The Fool appears optimistic and happy in a non-joking manner. In many decks he is standing on a cliff, arms extended, and head looking up towards the sky in a hopeful manner. His head is so high in the clouds he can’t see the cliff or the raging, high waters behind him. Or maybe he can and simply chooses optimism in the midst of adversity. When this card is pulled you must ask yourself which side of faith you are on. Are you being hopeful or doubtful?
Past: If this card comes upright in the past position, it suggests you have recently embarked on a new adventure. This could be a new job, changing your major, moving to a different state, or new love. The effects of this new venture will begin to play out in your life very soon. This card can also symbolize someone who has started on their spiritual journey and has been healing past situations. In many decks, an animal accompanies The Fool, attempting to warn him of the dangers surrounding him. This symbolizes one’s instincts and how we must always listen for guidance.
Present: During this time you are being called to take action and go after what you are seeking! Why are you hesitant and nervous? The bright sun in the corner of this card encourages you to have faith in the unknown, and trust that you are prepared for whatever is to come. The universe is shining on you; are you going to step into the light, and claim what is rightfully yours?
In other decks, The Fool is renamed as The Traveller. This can represent physical travel or the soul of a traveller, someone who is never satisfied with where they are and must always be on the go. The sun in this card also represents clarity and contentment; your guides are asking that you find a healthy balance between being adventurous and being unfulfilled. If you are unfulfilled, what are some expectations you must release?
This is a very powerful card to pull for the present, almost like a get out of jail free card. You are being given a green light regarding your situation. Don’t allow this opportunity to pass you by.
Future: The future might require you to do things alone, or go ghost. You could have been highly influenced by others in the past, and soon you will have to branch out on your own and leave the nest. This could also represent new opportunities about to fall upon you, ones you could only have dreamed of. In many decks, The Fool holds a flower, which could symbolize love but also vitality. So if you have been low on energy and unable to commit to new adventures, expect a huge boost!
Continue to embody the energy of The Fool; keep your head high and thoughts hopeful. Now is not the time to start doubting the work you have been putting in and forgetting all the lessons you have learned. Don’t begin to overthink; if you find that you are, practice mantras that welcome opportunities with grace and excitement. Also, if you have a pet, you need to interact with them more. Most likely they are your familiar, a spiritual guide tasked with assisting and protecting you.
*Disclaimer: Reading tarot cards in reverse is totally up to the reader. There are many who choose not to. There is no right way to do it; go with your intuition. For some readers, a reversal means that the energy of that card cannot manifest into reality due to a block. So if you are someone who chooses to not read reversed cards, you may skip this part; however if you are that reader, keep reading!
Remember to always be authentic with your spiritual practices.*
If The Fool comes out reversed in your reading there might be a reality check that you’ve had, are currently having, or will have in the future. You might want to run off and start anew but there are still cycles that need to be completed. This card in the reverse could also represent being in a self-imposed prison and needing to free yourself.
In order for TRUE beginnings to happen we must first end our cycles. You are being asked not to jump the gun and land yourself in an even worse situation. The Fool also speaks to our childlike innocence; where are you being blindly optimistic in this situation?
The Fool card in an advice position warns that you might be acting in fear and doubt. It is in your best interest to have a more positive regard for your situation. It is ok to not know what the future holds for you but that does not mean you give up, or worse, return to something you have already completed. There is a reason why we cannot see what is behind The Fool; it is because it does not matter. The lessons you learned from the past are within you, therefore the past can truly be the past.
You’re also being guided to look for areas in your life where you might be a little naive. Take this card as a wake-up call to trust yourself and your path more. Take that leap and allow the rest to fall into place. Simply put, do not stand in your own way!
However, if this card is reversed in the advice position, take a pause. At this time you are being too hasty and need to work on an actual plan to receive the outcome that is for your higher good.
Alexander, Skye, and Mary Shannon. The Only Tarot Book You'll Ever Need. 2019 ed., vol. 1, New York, Adams Media, 2019. 1 vols.
-Symone Smith, @aquaacunt