In my view, tarot cards are a great help because they make feelings, emotions, thoughts and concepts visible, almost tangible. Being able to analyse - to look at with your own eyes - an invisible, mental or emotional matter makes it much easier to comprehend. But how well does tarot work with everyday guidance or with more physical matters?
I've always been sporty - maybe due to my energetic fire sign nature - but in particular over the holiday period it's so very easy to overindulgence: there's chocolate, wine, heavy meals, cheese... and less time and interest for exercise. So I asked myself: how could tarot help with crafting a healthier, fitter life - or getting back on track with your momentarily slipped healthy life?
This theme is also a great opportunity to discuss the different methods for interpreting cards.
Cards can be read in as many ways as there are readers, but the most used and useful methods in my opinion are: the book meanings, the cues from pictures, and your own personal interpretations.
The book meanings are where it all starts. All cards have meanings, set by their creator and the tradition the specific deck relies on. Learning the book meanings is pretty much the same as learning words of a new language from a dictionary. It might feel like hard work, but eventually the words and meanings will stick; and nobody would expect to learn a new language without ever having to check the dictionary or ask from a native speaker, wouldn't they?
The visual cues in the image is where you start using your own intuition mixed with the book meaning, which is depicted by the image. This step is like learning the language on the go, partly relying on the dictionary, partly trying to figure from the speech. What is happening in the card? Who is in it? What is the person/people doing? What do they feel, think, plan, experience? How does that fit into your question? What is the connection of this specific picture and your life or question? What objects are present? What colours come up and how they make you feel? Is there something missing - say, you asked about an emotional question but won't get any cups = feelings?
Your personal, unique meanings are what wrap things up. This is like learning a slang or being able to create word plays in a new language. These interpretations can be based on your own understanding or intuition on what the image means, no matter what the book says. Your take might be a different angle or an additional meaning only you know through experience: the card has come to mean something specific for you, or you see the picture differently than the books.
I think that every reading is a combination of these three traits, but I've noticed through experience that when discussing physical matters (such as: where is the item I lost, how does such and such person/object look) the image often has a more literal meaning, whereas for the mental/emotional/spiritual plane the visual cues are more symbolic.
Healthier, fitter me - spread
4 - 5
1 - 2 - 3
1. What would be the best goal for me in search of healthier/fitter life?
2. How can I best achieve this goal?
3. What new activity or exercise I should try?
4. How to best achieve/maintain my ideal weight?
5. What will motivate me with my weight/fitness goal?
6. The best advice for me to be healthier?
And here's an example reading.
1. Goal - ACE OF WANDS. The goal should be to feel more energised, enthusiastic and inspired, get an energy boost out of exercising and healthy eating, which then radiates to all areas of my life.
2. How to - MAGICIAN. Trust your own skills, willpower and talents. Explore and have fun with creating the life you like; the new, fitter, healthier me. It's all within your reach, it's a matter of turning intention into action, not just dreaming or mulling it over in your head.
3. New thing to try - 2 WANDS. There are options available, it's up to you to decide which one feels the most energising and exciting. It could also be about literal wands, such as skiing (ski poles) or Scandinavian walking: power walking with ski poles. Hiking with hiking poles could also work!
For some reason I get gymnastics from this picture, in particular parallel bars, so maybe it's time to revive my childhood hobby! It could also be about balance and finding the ability to focus, so yoga would work perfectly - I already do yoga but it's more of a physical exercise than a mind-training method for me, whereas yoga could enable crystal-clear focus, staying in the zone.
4. Ideal weight - HIGH PRIESTESS. Listen to your body and learn to know it's secrets better. I think I should be more mindful about how I'm not always hungry when I want to eat: it can be about boredom, frustration, for reward, just to finish the plate because I took too much... The Priestess is a reminder to be more mindful about how, why and what I eat. Also, the Priestess holds a pomegranate and there are more at the background, so it's quite a clear prompt to eat more fruit and veggies to keep it fresh and light.
5. Motivation - 7 CUPS. Dreams, wishes and aspirations. Well, obviously many of my clothes will fit better and look nicer if I keep myself fit, and I've had this dream of once in my life having visible abs! Not necessarily a six-pack, but at least a fit-looking midriff. I'm short so any excess weigh shows quickly, and it tends to pack around me as a spare tyre if I'm not careful.
6. Best advice - 4 SWORDS. Rest more, take power naps, ensure good quality sleep, take breaks, withdraw from the daily hassle. I haven't slept enough for some time now, just because I feel so energised by many recent life changes (one of them is this blog) so I often wake up ridiculously early because I feel I have so many things to do. I need to remember to take time to rest and recover, too. Meditation and quiet contemplation, letting my mind rest, is essential here.
Happy searching for your healthier and fitter version!
|Listen to your body and eat more fresh produce, reminds the High Priestess.|