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The Four Aces of RWS

Learn Tarot – Introduction

On the many Facebook groups and forums you’ll regularly see people recommending the study of each individual card, using a mix of artwork interpretation and other references, over many, many months.  With 78 cards this is a considerable challenge;  if others learnt the hard way then you should too!  Right?

Wrong!  Let us show you not only the easy way – but the best way to learn the underlying associations.

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Tarot and Our Furry Friends: Exploring the Mystical Connection Between Pets and The Cards

Have you ever caught your furry companion gazing into the distance, and wondered what profound thoughts are whirling through their mind? While our pets’ thoughts might be simpler than ours, they are no less significant. They, too, experience a rich tapestry of wants, needs, and feelings, communicating in their unique, often non-verbal ways. Interestingly, the universal language of Tarot offers a bridge to understanding these silent conversations, providing insights into the inner lives of our beloved pets.

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Exploring the Alexandrian Rose Ankh in Tarot

The Alexandrian Rose Ankh stands as a profound symbol within the Alexandrian tradition of Wicca, intertwining concepts of life, magic, and mystery. Conceived by Alex and Maxine Sanders, founders of the Alexandrian strain of modern witchcraft, this emblem represents a fusion of ancient symbols: the Ankh, the rose, and the lily. The Ankh, a traditional symbol of life, meshes with the rose, representing the magician and the mysteries, while the lily’s leaves peek out slightly, hinting at the concealed knowledge yet to be unveiled.

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Exploring Sexuality and Gender Dynamics in Tarot and British Traditional Witchcraft: A Modern Perspective

Exploring Sexuality and Gender Dynamics in Tarot and British Traditional Witchcraft: A Modern Perspective

In both Tarot and British Traditional Witchcraft (BTW), traditional male and female roles have been long established, based on perceived energies of the sexes, intertwined with god/goddess and sun/moon energies. However, as society’s understanding of gender and sexuality evolves, questions arise about how these paths can adapt or maintain tradition in the face of changing views on gender identity.

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The Role of Tarot in Traditional British Witchcraft

The roots of modern Wicca and its connection to historical witchcraft demonstrate a deep engagement with various forms of magic, symbolism, and Pagan religious practices. The emergence of modern Wicca is credited to figures like Gerald Gardner, who, inspired by existing traditions and possibly connected to older covens, developed Wicca into the structured form we recognise today. This included influences from ceremonial magic, the Kabbalah, and indeed, the symbolic systems like those found in the Tarot​​.

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The Best Tarot Podcasts – 2024 Edition

As we navigate the complexities of modern life, the wisdom of the tarot offers guidance, reflection, and a deeper understanding of our personal journeys. In this digital age, podcasts have emerged as a valuable resource for learning, entertainment, and connection, making the ancient practice of tarot more accessible than ever before.

In the “Best Tarot Podcasts – 2024 Edition,” we dive into the vibrant world of tarot podcasts that have captivated listeners worldwide. Whether you are a seasoned tarot reader or new to the cards, this curated list promises to enhance your understanding, intuition, and love for tarot. From insightful discussions to mystical storytelling, each podcast offers a unique perspective on tarot reading, spiritual growth, and metaphysical exploration.

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The Purpose of a Tarot Atmosphere

When learning how to read tarot, it is important to have the right mindset. You should be focused and relaxed, and building a good tarot atmosphere during your reading can help you achieve the mindset necessary to get the most out of your reading. This means choosing to include things like candles, incense, and dim lights in your atmosphere if you find it helpful. All of these things can serve as a reminder to your brain and subconscious that you are getting ready to do something important.

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tarot cards

Buying your first deck – Which deck should you chose?

One of the most glorious things about tarot, is the huge number of beautiful decks available and the wonderful artists that create them. If you’re not careful, you could spend an awful lot of money collecting all the ones you love best!

However, when you’ve just decided to learn tarot and your browsing for your first deck, the choice can seem truly overwhelming. It’s not unusual for people get analysis paralysis and put off buying a deck because they just don’t know which to choose. For some people, this means they never buy one at all.
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Learn Tarot – The Hermetic Qabalah (Tree of Life)

This is a difficult topic to cover as the terminology used can be unfamiliar and discouraging to newcomers. However, here I try to present this in an accessible form. If like me you struggle with the terminology, ignore the unfamiliar names and instead view the tree, numbers, associations and card positions. This will enable anyone to start drawing on the Hermetic Qabalah to deepen their understanding of Tarot.

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The Best Tarot Podcasts

Podcasts are incredibly popular nowadays. The ability to be heard has never been so accessible; anyone can become podcast star with little more than a mobile phone and an internet connection.

As a podcaster this accessibility is very welcome. However, as a listener it can be difficult to know where to begin and a challenge to find the gems amongst the sea of mediocrity.

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To Cleanse or Not to Cleanse

A question commonly asked online:-

“My tarot cards are no longer working.  I’ve been told I need to cleanse them – how do I do this?”

Answers typically range from smudging, to bathing in moonlight, covering in salt, covering in crystals, tapping (typically 3 times), ‘resetting’ (placing the cards back in original order) and even burying in the garden for several days.

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Tarot and the Planets

When Arthur Waite and Pamela Coleman-Smith designed the Rider-Waite-Smith (RWS) deck, between them they managed to include symbology from pretty much every esoteric system available. Therefore it should come as no surprise that astrology and the planets play a large part in the design of the RWS deck.

If you’ve been reading the other posts on this page, you should know by now that the minor arcana cards represent the astrological elements of air (Swords), Earth (Pentacles), fire (Wands) and water (Cups). The major arcana also has specific cards for each astrological sign and therefore, that signs ruling planet as well.

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Learn Tarot – Example Reading

I considered constructing a spread with chosen cards to demonstrate how a reading may work in practice.  However, I then had a question of my own and the resultant cards seem so perfect I thought it a great opportunity to not only perform a simple reading but relate the cards to the querent/question.

Ready?  First some personal background…

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Learn Tarot – Reversals

Reading reversals (when cards are drawn from the deck inverted) can be traced back as far as the earliest days of Tarot’s use as a divinatory system.  The earliest reference to reversals I can find is from Antoine Court de Gebelin in 1781.  Antoine’s writings formed the basis of Eliphas Levi’s system, later adopted with modification by the Golden Dawn which ultimately led to Waite’s re-interpretation with Pamela Coleman-Smith (the RWS deck).

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Learn Tarot – The Numbers (Revisited)

In a previous article we listed the basic number associations of the minor arcana.

To keep things simple we used the traditional RWS associations as reference.  It’s important to note that this is not the only system in use and it can be useful to cross reference the RWS and Tarot De Marseilles in order to gain further insight.   Additionally, the associated card from the major arcana is also worthy of study in reference to the minors.

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What the F*** is a Thoth Deck?

I have to admit to being a bit conflicted about writing this post. On the one hand, the idea was immensely exciting and I was really looking forward to writing this piece. On the other hand, I knew that I would only be able to scratch the surface of what is a very deep and convoluted rabbit hole. The more I read, the less I know, the less I know, the more there is to research and the bigger and windier the road becomes. Therefore, this is designed as an introduction to what I have learned so far. There are undoubtedly many people who know much more about this that I do and I’m sure as time goes on, there will be other posts from this blogging collective around the subject and the key concepts behind the creation of the tarot.
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My Experience of Learning Tarot

It’s funny how different people come to tarot. For some people it’s been something their family has always done, others are simply drawn to it, but for people like me who grew up in very ‘no nonsense’ households where anything esoteric was poo-pooed, it is something odd and mysterious that requires a ‘happening’ to be brought into your life.

Tarot was something I was aware of but never paid much attention to. After all, it was just a load of nonsense and woo wasn’t it? Just a bunch of generalisations that could be applied to any situation, a bit like cold reading. Until I learned that my good friend, Steve, reads the cards.

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From Round the Cauldron’s Blog

‘Round the Cauldron Everyday life as a modern witch!

  • keep track of your books 📚 FREE Notion template!
    by Megan Black on February 16, 2024 at 5:02 pm

    One of my goals for 2024 is to read more books. I created a Notion template to help me track my books and hit my goal! Today, I want to share this Notion template with you FOR FREE! Get my Personal Library Template ✨ → https://heyyyitsmegan.notion.site/My-Personal-Library-Template-d793f5ff4be645448b6885d1c6028566 Try Audible Plus: https://amzn.to/49xFWw9 Kindle Unlimited: https://www.amazon.com/kindle-dbs/hz/subscribe/ku »» SUPPORT

  • Mindful Mornings: Embracing the Power of Slow Starts
    by Megan Black on February 9, 2024 at 1:54 pm

    If you’re anything like me, you probably feel like you never have enough time in the day. It gets away from you, the seconds, minutes, and hours slipping from your grasp like sand through your fingers. It isn’t a good way to feel. Life seems to pass us by and there’s nothing we can do

  • Imbolg in a New Home
    by Megan Black on February 7, 2024 at 1:22 am

    Imbolg was a little different for me this year. Since we moved to a whole new state in the middle of December, things haven’t really been set up the way I want because they can’t be. We still have so much work to do to this house – honestly, more work than it might be

  • Healing Your Inner Child Tarot Spread
    by Megan Black on January 1, 2024 at 6:31 pm

    My word for 2024 is Heal, and one of the aspects of healing for me is inner child work. I am a product of both my environment and my genetics. As a child, I went through a lot of things that a child shouldn’t have to go through. I was witness to some things that,

  • Book Review: Ancient Wisdom, Modern Hope
    by Megan Black on October 23, 2023 at 2:27 pm

    In this book, the author explores monasticism as it pertains to modern pagan spirituality. As someone that likes structure in my own pagan practice, the idea of monasticism has always been intriguing to me. For those that don’t know, monasticism is also known as monkhood. This way of life is a devotion to the Gods, usually giving up some form of worldly possession or way of life in order to live in service to the Gods the individual is devoted to.

From the Unified Esoteric Tarot

Esoteric and Divinatory Tarot by Attila Kárpáthy

  • Tutoring
    by Admin on January 7, 2024 at 4:45 am

    I will start by quoting (again) Gurdjieff, one of my teachers. “This is almost all that can be said in general about the ‘stairway’ and about the ‘way,’ because there are different ways. We have spoken of this before. And,…Read more Tutoring ›

  • Yearly reading with chart
    by Admin on December 4, 2023 at 6:33 am

    This is that time of the year. It is time to get your Yearly Tarot spread with 16 cards plus a yearly diagram for only 99.99 USD. They are delivered as PDFs with pictures and detailed explanations. I offer a…Read more Yearly reading with chart ›

  • December’s report
    by Admin on December 3, 2023 at 8:38 am

    2023 was a challenging calendar year. And although the challenging period isn’t over yet, the end of the year might be somewhat lighter. At least we should take one step back and look at things calmer. December starts at the…Read more December’s report ›

  • Let there be light (Yehi ohr)
    by Admin on November 22, 2023 at 9:27 am

    St. Augustine of Hippo noted that “numbers are the Universal language offered by the deity to humans as confirmation of the truth.” Mathematics is considered the language of G_d(s) and, therefore, the language of creation. According to the Jewish mystical…Read more Let there be light (Yehi ohr) ›

From Theresa’s Tarot Lady Blog

The Tarot Lady The tarot cards tell a story...but you write the ending.

  • The Hit List – We were all beginners once
    by Theresa Reed on February 24, 2024 at 2:25 pm

    Many years ago, I was attending a yoga conference. A lithe woman in skimpy attire broke out into a handstand in the middle of the room for no discernible reason. It was impressive, for sure, but also…odd. I observed other folks maneuvering into complicated contortions, too. It felt like a spontaneous Circe de Soleil presentation. The post The Hit List – We were all beginners once appeared first on The Tarot Lady.

  • Stars Crossed – How to Get Along with Aquarius
    by Theresa Reed on February 23, 2024 at 2:03 pm

    The Stars Crossed series focuses on astrological compatibility. While it’s way more complicated than just your Sun sign, we’re starting off with the Sun because it is an important part of your astrology profile. After all, it’s your core personality.  This month, we look at Aquarius. Keep in mind this will be general info. As The post Stars Crossed – How to Get Along with Aquarius appeared first on The Tarot Lady.

  • Full Moon in Virgo 2024 – and Tarot Readings for Each Zodiac Sign
    by Theresa Reed on February 19, 2024 at 2:18 pm

    The Full Moon in Virgo 2024 shows up on February 24th at 7:30 AM ET. It’s the best lunation for a full-on declutter. Sort through your belongings. What needs to go? Are there places for everything or are you knee-deep in too many things? Purge, donate, and clear space. Once that is done, a deep The post Full Moon in Virgo 2024 – and Tarot Readings for Each Zodiac Sign appeared first on The Tarot Lady.

  • The Hit List – Is it Mercury retrograde already?
    by Theresa Reed on February 17, 2024 at 1:42 pm

    “Is it Mercury retrograde already?”  It sure felt like that this past week. I double-checked the calendar. Nope. Mercury is on good behavior at the moment, so the tech gremlins cannot be blamed on the planets.  “Am I technology cursed?” That was my second thought. I’d like to think I’m savvy, but the recent spate The post The Hit List – Is it Mercury retrograde already? appeared first on The Tarot Lady.

From Beth’s Little Red Tarot Blog

Little Red Tarot Alternative approaches to tarot, ritual, magic & more

  • #Decklust | Witchy wonderfulness for deep winter
    by Beth on December 1, 2023 at 5:00 pm

    Free Palestine, Free Palestine, Free Palestine. The post #Decklust | Witchy wonderfulness for deep winter appeared first on Little Red Tarot by Beth

  • Goodbye, beloved Hele!
    by Hele on December 1, 2023 at 11:21 am

    "Each week I would connect with so many of you through email or your orders – such small ways, but still, you have influenced, inspired, humbled and honed me. No word of a lie." The post Goodbye, beloved Hele! appeared first on Little Red Tarot by Hele

  • #Decklust | New decks for autumn, & Many Moons planners
    by Beth on October 2, 2023 at 7:11 am

    The darkness stretchs out its arms and claims a little more of each passing day. Flocks of geese call out as they return to the river Dyfi for the cold season. Death and decay are in the air. The post #Decklust | New decks for autumn, & Many Moons planners appeared first on Little Red Tarot by Beth

  • #Decklust | Tarot for misty mornings, lunar planners, textural collage
    by Beth on September 5, 2023 at 4:01 pm

    September rolls in on misty mornings that give way to warm, bright days and evenings with a faint nip in the air. The Ancestral Healing Tarot is on its way, along with this year's Dreaming the World to Come. The post #Decklust | Tarot for misty mornings, lunar planners, textural collage appeared first on Little Red Tarot by Beth

From Sharon Day’s Blog

Stories by Sharon Day on Medium Stories by Sharon Day on Medium

  • Alexandrian Witchcraft: Vouching & Validity of Initiation — Reference vs. Recommendation
    by Sharon Day on July 21, 2023 at 4:48 pm

    Alexandrian Witchcraft: Vouching & Validity of Initiation — Reference vs. RecommendationWithin the esoteric strands of Alexandrian Witchcraft, the practice of vouching serves as a confirmation of an Initiate’s journey into the sacred realm. It is a declaration, a stamp of authenticity that states: Yes, I can confirm that this person has been initiated into the Craft.Nevertheless, this fundamental process is often misconstrued, leading to a convolution that the witchcraft community […]

  • How do you take your Wicca?
    by Sharon Day on October 24, 2018 at 10:34 am

    Either White or Dark, but please — with only one ‘Blessed Be’!We were in a London Black Cab on the way to Floris, the oldest bespoke perfumery in England when I was reading out a terse text exchange between a Priest and myself about goodness knows what but it seemed important at the time.Blessed Be, [snark] Blessed Be x;Blessed Be, [swipe] BBx;Blessed Be, [zing] Blessed Be xArgh, stop with the Blessed Be’s Sharon, what is all this Blessed Be, Blessed Be? my exasperated teacher […]

  • ‘I am, I am’ — or ‘was’. Death and Initiation via Winding Stairs & Contrasting Squares.
    by Sharon Day on October 9, 2018 at 7:19 pm

    ‘I am, I am’ — or ‘was’. Death and Initiation via Winding Stairs & Contrasting Squares.Perfect Love, Trust, and Ritual — just Perfect.Jeremy Storey ©2015‘I didn’t enjoy that one bit, that’s why I wanted to take my initiation alone, this was a disaster, we were all fighting with each other to respond, so in the end I just shut up’ lamented the Snowflake part way through the Rite.A smile curled at the corners of my mouth as I listened to her declare for about […]

  • The River Runs Through It; The Waters of Life Revive It — Alexandrian Witchcraft.
    by Sharon Day on August 30, 2018 at 10:30 am

    Beginning in New Orleans in ‘17; to Glastonbury; to Sintra, Portugal; to London; & by ’18 – to the Big Apple and back again.“The current of the river swept silently over them all — young and old, rich and poor, good and evil, the current going its own way, knowing only its own crystal self .”— Richard Bach, ‘Illusions’The Hudson River, NYC; Credit: Ryan LavenderThe Hudson River, Hell’s Kitchen, NYC – July ‘18The previous night’s thunderstorms had finally […]

  • Alexandrian Witchcraft & Wiccan Vouching: Ring of Truth or Ring of Fire?
    by Sharon Day on March 7, 2018 at 4:27 pm

    She was the third High Priesthood Finn to join us for an afternoon meeting to verify her lineage — in other words, to obtain a ‘vouch’ for the integrity of her initiatory status. Not, however, before Maxine extolled her utter disdain for this ‘vouching business’, as she often calls it.Indeed, I lose track of the times Maxine’s said ‘Alex and I could tell within five minutes if someone was initiated’; or, as another elder she likes to quote said ‘they smell right.’Back […]

From Maxine Sanders’ Blog

Stories by Maxine Sanders on Medium Stories by Maxine Sanders on Medium

  • Music in Alexandrian Witchcraft
    by Maxine Sanders on November 25, 2022 at 9:44 am

    ‘My first experience of circle music of sorts was at cakes and wine after my initiation; the wine was flowing, and the singing of the Witches became progressively, if not less joyously, out of tune.It was 1964 when the Manchester covenstead became the proud owners of a grand music cabinet, highly polished with sliding doors; impressively, it could stack ten records at a time.Sandy Shaw, Anthony Newley and Cilla Black would be playing at full blast as we regularly practised different scrying […]

  • Alexandrian Witchcraft: Battling the Scourge of Historical Inaccuracy — Fact by Fact . . .
    by Maxine Sanders on April 27, 2019 at 9:20 pm

    Alexandrian Witchcraft: Battling the Scourge of Historical Inaccuracy — Fact by Fact . . .‘Freedom of Fire’, Credit: Kanakcharyulu VelpuriRecently there have been a number of mistakes regarding the contents of the Alexandrian Book of Shadows and how certain Alexandrian practices came into being. I hope they are genuine mistakes as we all know how easy it is to change Occult history, which is a detriment to the pure workings of many a Tradition.I have been a practising Priestess in […]

  • The Joys of an Alexandrian Witch.
    by Maxine Sanders on January 14, 2018 at 7:36 pm

    In the sixties, Alex and I believed our work and joy as witches meant nothing and no one is too high or low including lords and beggars, the sick, the daft, demonic/angelic and the peculiar.We were mocked and derided by the then Witchcraft elite; of course, we took no notice and continued in the freedom of what was to become known as ‘The Alexandrian Tradition of Witchcraft.’For the past fifty-three years, all manner of humanity has passed over the threshold to my home. They are greeted […]

  • The Temple Pilgrimage to the Alexandrian Grand Sabbat
    by Maxine Sanders on December 18, 2017 at 1:00 pm

    Credit: Whitehorse StudioAn ‘Alexandrian Grand Sabbat’ was recently announced giving rise to questions about what a Grand Sabbat is. Conjectures and inaccurate responses abounded, ranging from ‘new agey fluffiness’ to heavy-duty partying with consequent hangovers to dressing-to-impress.Alexandrian priesthood as I have known it has always desired to experience the power of ritual and pure intent; and their quest for knowledge and fulfillment would not accord with the cursory presumptions […]

  • The Heartbreak of the Teacher
    by Maxine Sanders on October 10, 2017 at 4:06 pm

    Credit: Michael HemmingWhen the exceptional student comes along, there is an awakening within the teacher’s heart, a rejoicing that is incomparable. A flood of joyful anticipation flows through one’s being and then when the time is right, the work begins…First the groundwork: I, the teacher have feet of clay, my knowledge is limited; I am the student too.My intention is to enable the student to embrace a state of being that will eventually and worthily attract an advanced teacher that […]