a tarot deck is at least loosely based on the 78-card structure of 56 minor cards and 22 major cards. what? breaking it down, yo!
in most tarot decks there are a total of 78 cards. some decks are mischievous and add things or subtracts things. but a proper tarot deck, one used for teaching and learning the tarot has 78 cards.
22 of those are called the major arcana (side note arcana=secret or mystery). these cards have names like the high priestess, the star, death, temperance. these cards are based on universal archetypes and are arranged 0 through 21. the story here starts with the fool in 0 and follows as the fool encounters the teaching of each archetype from earthly skills in cards 1-7, through believe systems cards 8-14, through workings of the universe in cards 15-21.
don't worry you aren't supposed to understand yet. just trust that the stories get bigger and deeper as you get higher up in the numbers.
the minor arcana is broken up into 4 suites: they are pentacles, wands, cups and swords.
each suite takes on a different aspect of human living and tells a story of personal growth and evolution from the Ace (seed) through the King (mastery)
pentacles tell us about our relationships to our bodies, the land, our food, our work, our home and our community/family. in pentacles we learn patience and growing and receiving and all about manifestation. we learn about being alive and human and what that means and how we function here on earth.
wands tell us about or creativity, our passion, our purpose, and our work. it shows us where we are rushing about doing nothing but lighting fires and where to light the fires to get better results. wands show us our stuckness in regards to creativity and ways we can tap into our passion to make humanity greater.
cups dive into our emotional body. the show us where longing is, where flow stops everything stops and how to stop and smell the flowers instead of all this rushing about. cups ask us to open and be vulnerable and in that vulnerability amazing things can be nourished. cups ask us to receive and to take care of self first so all others can be cared for.
finally swords are about communication and ego. the swords ask us to harness our personal truth and most of the suite shows us how when we loose our truth horrible things happen. swords is a challenging progression of continuously forgetting who we are and what we believe and a continuous reminder that although our ego is designed to keep us safe it is very rarely right about anything and this causes struggle.
want more? discover tarot class here on October 23 from 10-3pm, see events page for details. gonna be making this a regular things bi-monthly so no worries if you miss out.
also starting in January is learn tarot in your inbox a 6 week class to introduce you to the tarot and allow you to use the tarot in your daily life for answers.