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A Beginner's Look Into the Major Arcana of the Tarot Card Deck

Published
13 Jul
2020

Every tarot deck is made up of 2 parts. 

One is the Minor Arcana (56 cards), and the other is the Major Arcana (22 cards). Each Major Arcana card represents something on its own.

Here's a quick overview of the major takeaways from each of these 22 cards.

The Meanings Behind the 22 Major Arcana Cards

These cards tell a story through their archetypes who represent stages within the human journey. While reading tarot cards, remember that there are "upright" or positive implications, and a "reversed" or negative implications. Upright and reversed may not always be negative or positive. A qualified Tarot card reader will be able to tell the card's meaning. 

Let's take a look at each one individually.

The Fool

The fool is a free spirit. On the reverse, it also symbolizes naivety and carelessness. 

Takeaway: willingly embrace new beginnings.

The Magician

This symbolizes willpower, solutions, manifestation, and creativity. It also indicates deception, trickery, and mischief.

Takeaway: you can overcome obstacles and beat the odds with a bit of creativity.

The High Priestess

This represents awareness, intuition, and connectivity. From the reversed perspective, there is a lack of groundedness, paired with repression.

Takeaway: follow your instincts.

The Empress

A symbol of maternity, fertility, warmth, and beauty. There is a tendency to be overbearing.

Takeaway: connect with nature and find the power to be gentle.

The Emperor

The upright view shows power, leadership, and authority. The reverse represents rigidity. 

Takeaway: you are in control of your own life.

The Hierophant

The Hierophant symbolizes morality, traditionalism, custom, spirituality, and guidance. It also sparks subversiveness. 

Takeaway: explore a spiritual perspective.

The Lovers

This represents union and affection. It also symbolizes the loss of individuality, one-sidedness, or lack of harmony. 

Takeaway: nurture your relationships; give them the attention they need.

The Chariot

The chariot is a symbol of direction, purpose, and drive. The reversed reflects a lack of control. 

Takeaway: do not put limitations on yourself.

Strength

This signifies fortitude and courage. It comes with feelings of insecurity and underestimating yourself. 

Takeaway: you are strong enough.

The Hermit

The hermit represents introspection and contemplation. The reverse indicates loneliness and a loss of direction. 

Takeaway: find comfort in solitude.

Wheel of Fortune

This represents the temporary nature of the good and the bad. It indicates a desperate need for control. 

Takeaway: embrace experiences and the lessons they bring.

Justice

This symbolizes a cause-effect, karmic existence. The reverse indicates unfairness and dishonesty.

Takeaway: you reap what you sow.

The Hanged Man

This represents sacrifice. On the flip side, it symbolizes unnecessary martyrdom and fear.

Takeaway: small sacrifices contribute to bigger pleasures.

Death

This indicates new beginnings and changes. It also comes with the fear of these changes.

Takeaway: embrace change.

Temperance

Temperance represents moderation, balance, and patience. The reverse is extremism and excess.

Takeaway: do not force things; go with the flow.

The Devil

The devil symbolizes addiction and superficiality. However, it also indicates freedom. 

Takeaway: your freedom is in your own hands.

The Tower

This represents upheaval and destruction. It comes with the fear of suffering. 

Takeaway: things fall apart to make way for better things.

The Star

The star embodies hope and rejuvenation. The reverse: discouragement and anxiety. 

Takeaway: have faith in the universe.

The Moon

The moon symbolizes intuition and subconscious thoughts. It also reflects confusion, misinterpretation, and apprehensiveness.

Takeaway: do not believe everything you feel.

The Sun

This represents joy and optimism. The reverse of this is sadness.

Takeaway: you're on the right path; express gratitude and continue.

Judgment

This symbolizes a reckoning or crossroads. Self-doubt may accompany this decision.

Takeaway: it's never too late to change.

The World

This represents self-fulfillment. The reverse is a lack of closure.

Takeaway: you're exactly where you need to be.

Ensuring Accuracy in Tarot Card Readings

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