The Major Arcana Tarot Cards
As an interpreter, the Tarot card meanings aren’t always straight forward in a reading. Even when we are reading the cards for our own personal enlightenment, we know the cards are a reflection of our lives, but often what we see in a spread, is not as simple as identifying “happy” or “sad” circumstances in our lives. If it were that easy, we would all be devoted to the Tarot for guidance. That is why learning Tarot card meanings is essential to our full development, and we begin our learning journey with the Major Arcana. It is much more than merely placing a bet on the outcomes of your future.
The 22 cards of the Major Arcana (meaning, "Greater Secrets") are also known as the Trumps or Triumphs. In the first decks, only the Major Arcana were illustrated or illuminated with symbolic images. These are the cards containing strong archetypal symbols and meanings. Some of the Major Arcana represent archetypal figures, for example the Emperor, while others represent qualities, for example, the Hermit, and others, like the Chariot and Death Card speak to rites of passage in a person's life, those transformative events and circumstances, that set us off in new directions, on new paths.
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The archetypes of the Major Arcana are energetic imprints that exist in our psyches. Because of the numerology and imagery of the Major Arcana, it is not difficult to understand the key meanings of the Major Arcana, even for the beginner. And since each card is numbered, a basic understanding of numerology will enhance your understanding of the cards. Viewing the cards of the Major Arcana triggers reactions from deep within our subconscious. Even without a deep understanding of the meaning of these cards, you will find that you naturally come to the correct interpretation of the cards, simply by allowing yourself to react to them… still, it must be understood that to discover the subtler, deeper meanings would require years of study.The Major Arcana are the forces that operate in our lives. In a typical reading, the forces depicted by the cards of the Major Arcana are explained and even modified by the cards around them. When we receive a majority of Major Arcana in a reading, we know that great forces are at work, and the querant may not be able to control the outcomes.