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Anyone Like Tarot Cards? I just got a couple of new decks. Been doing readings for 54 years. Pretty good at it.

Beamieupscottie 4 Mar 28

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I think tarot, like all other forms of divination, is a great big pile of steaming woo. They are quite pretty, however.

Jnei Level 8 Mar 29, 2018

There is no scientific evidence that anything can be fortold by anyone using funny cards. There is however, a lot of scientific evidence that some people can convice the gullable of anything. "There is a sucker born every minute."---P.T. Barnum.


Yay occult nonsense


I like tarot cards boiled al dente and layered with thin slices of velveeta, topped with unread tea leaves in the microwave for about two minutes. It saves a lot of time shopping for strawberry fertilizer.

Sounds chewy


OK, big shameful admission from me. When I was young, eons ago, I used to do Tarot Card readings and people thought I was pretty good. Oh, the shame of it now. It's all intuition and guesswork, and a bit of a show, but it's amazing how you can fool yourself into thinking it's "reading" people's futures. Still got my old pack of traditional TCs. It's a reminder how mystical things can get you in.


yes I used to do it all the time, my favourite are the motherpeace deck of round cards and I somethime s jumble all my decks together so that there might be the element of getting 6 cards the same - I work intuitively often asking my client if they want to pick a card from the pack to try to get extra meaning and taking their suggestions into account - I don't believe there is any whooh in it any higher power in the mix just the magic of two people coming together to be creative and possibly problem solving . I never charge.


by Noah Lugeons

As many of you know, I spent a number of years drowning in spiritual woo before finally admitting to myself that it was all bullshit. And when I look back on those years it occurs to me that my conversion to reason probably would have happened a lot sooner if it wasn’t for those damned Tarot Cards.

I got my first set at the ripe and impressionable age of 14 from a friend. He’d bought them a year or two earlier along with a little book on how to read them. He never used them and I was fascinated so he told me to keep them.

It’s important to note that I never read a book about cold reading. I never read a book along the lines of “How to Trick People into Thinking You’re Psychic” or “How to Bullshit Your Way Through a Tarot Reading”. I read books that claimed that Tarot cards were magical incarnations of universal symbology that would act as a window to the spirit world. By and large the books would just give you horoscope-style platitudes you could associate with each card and left it to the reader to figure out cold-reading on their own.

And as it turns out, that’s not hard to do. In fact, it’s so easy that one can reasonably learn cold-reading without ever realizing that they were doing it. This is certainly facilitated by the fact that virtually everyone I ever had the occasion to read Tarot for really, really wanted them to be magical. They were always quite accommodating in my unconscious desire to trick them. And even when I walked away from a reading saying “well, I guess the magic just wasn’t there this time”, my querent was quick to dissuade me by telling me how amazing the experience was. And instead of responding with an incredulous “really?” I’d smile and nod and tell myself that I must have been wrong.

Of course, the subject of the reading wasn’t the only one desperate to be fooled. I wanted to wield magical powers at least as much as the people I was reading them for so I was willing to seize on just about any shred of dubious evidence that confirmed that. It was a mutual feedback loop of horseshit and it kept me satisfied for a decade.

To be perfectly honest, I kept reading the cards long after I’d admitted to myself that they were nonsense and I did so with the paper-thin justification that I was still giving good advice. Somehow I decided that misleading people about the very nature of the universe was okay as long as it came with a generically positive message.

I can’t pinpoint when that stopped being enough for me, but it was at least a decade ago. And while I haven’t had occasion to use them in ten years the memories and the beautiful artwork of my favorite deck has made them impossible to part with.

So fast-forward to about a month ago. I was listening to Cognitive Dissonance and Cecil was talking about having never been to a psychic. He said he’d love to have the experience to draw on, but he’d be damned if he was ever going to financially support those charlatans. So I sent along a message letting him know that I’d be happy to give him a Tarot reading over Skype sometime if he was serious about it.

Well, after a bit of back and forth, he invited me on his show to give a simultaneous reading to both him and his co-host. We’ll be recording it this Thursday, so over the last few days I’ve knocked the dust off of my old cards, brushed up on a few of the zodiacal associations and did a few practice readings. And much like rewatching a film I loved as a child, I was overwhelmed the entire time by just how mind-numbingly stupid the whole practice is. How could I ever have enjoyed this? How could I ever have bought into this? And how could I have ever fooled anyone else in to buying it?

I suppose that it’s possible I’m just not as sharp with them as I once was. Maybe I’ve just lost the magic. And, far more likely, maybe I was embarrassingly stupid ten years ago. Whichever is the case, I have to admit that I’m happy about it. After all, the worst thing I could be when doing a Tarot reading on a skeptical show is convincing.

No word yet on when the episode will be available, but as soon as I’ve got a link in hand I’ll be posting it here, Facebook and Twitter.


Not me, but I also learned them as a teen in the 70 BUT I was also a Randi Fan, so I also knew about cold reading and never put stock in them.
To me this is just magical thinking.

I hear the train a coming WOOO WOOOOOOOOOOO


I like the cards, ie the pretty pictures on some of the decks.

I just did a quick reading for you Rugglesby. It seems you're going on a trip.... and you are in for a big windfall.. no wait, it's actually a big bill... sorry. 🙂

@David1955 bummer. But you are close, my dog is at my feet, she just let go with big wind.


Tarot card is a tool to help you understand and intrepret what is out there.
A guide only - like when you are trekking a trek first time you use maps to guide you, but trekking the same trek umpteen times you know the way without the map but you will also know the surronding habitat,the do and don'ts and the animals in the surrounding that to look for and when to weary of Imagine now some city slickers turn up and try trekking and ask you for your help like the tarot card you use your skills and show them the path and tell them about the surroundings and more they would think your are the best trekker they have ever found - youstart to see a trend as you furthr experience down the route

Rosh Level 7 Mar 29, 2018

I co-created a deck in the 80s that recently came back into print (just so you know it's not BS, do a search for my first and last name with tarot, and you'll see it... no advertising intended). When I was reading over the book to see what I'd written in those long-ago days, I think there must have been something of the "mysticism is nonsense" in me, because I hedged a lot about not taking it seriously in my commentary.


Woo, religion and pit bulls are meant to be cues that indicate “You are now entering the <100 IQ club”.


Always enjoyed tarot cards. They may feel like woo, but not as much as other woo like psychics and such. I have a couple of decks with different pictures. I am not at all good at reading them any longer - that's in the wayback machine.

They have in my 54 years of doing readings, always been helpful, informative and accurate. They never predict misfortune or death but may urge watchfulness, caution or taking advantage of new opportunities and challenges.


Mine have sat unused for over 20 years...i did some cold readings at a party (against my better judgement, but heavily urged into it) and "caught" a severe depression from one of the subjects, who, it turned out, had every right to be severely depressed. Took a week to shake, even knowing it was not mine. Done! Beware!

Don't let fear affect your ability to do readings. Nothing negative comes from a reading other than what the reader brings in themselves and no - you should NEVER do a reading if you are not comfortable doing it. Shuffle the cards a couple of times - look at them and "Feel" what they are telling you. Don't do a reading if you are in any way feeling negative or afraid. It will affect your interpretation in a less than helpful fashion.

@Beamieupscottie on this one, because it was at the home of a friend, i felt comfy....turns out 2 of the guests were a grown guy and his mom...from her I caught the "depression", as she was the paroler for the convicted child-molester son, a lifetime sentence for Her! His were the weirdest cards I have ever read, hers were the saddest most hopeless. I will never read for strangers again, and I do not need/ want to know stuff my friends are hiding, so....DONE!

@AnneWimsey You must do what your conscience says. I sure don't think readings should be done by persons who fear the cards or what they might tell. Defeats the entire purpose of a reading. Peace.


I have a deck that mostly stays in the box. If I am really stuck I will get them out and try to decide what the real problem is, flip the cards, figure out what the cards are suppose to be saying, gather them up and put them back on the shelf. Cant say they have ever helped but they are pretty and the reading is interesting.... so they distract me for a while mostly.

You can get from them what you put into them. I have had my deck of Rider Waite patterned cards for 54 years. They have always been a positive influence.


No not interested


I collect decks because I like the artwork. Novice at readings though.


I don't put much faith in it but like the lottery, I'm always down for the game.

There can be information and insight gleaned from doing readings but you get out what you put in.


Even in light of the fact that it is an irrational endeavor?

I go with whatever works! the mind is an amazing organ and companionship is a very big part of the 'reading process' never doubt that because you are being creative and not 'scientifc' that there is no impact - or realness. When I am reading I never tell people what will happen I tell them the significance of the card and its placement and let them tell me what they make of it - I am a trained person centred counsellor and trained person centred creative expressive therapist as well as a trainer in person centred counselling and Transactional Analysis

@jacpod -- Please explain how one becomes a "person centered creative expressive therapist" and what credential is awarded for the study. Does one need to publish things in peer reviewed publications to establish ones reputation in the field? What is the theory upon which this practice is based and where might I find it?

@evidentialist One goes to train in California with Carl Rogers' daughter Natalie Rogers - Unfortunately she died recently but plenty are carrying on her work .

Her father came up with the ideals of Person Centred Therapy when he was a psychologist but nothing he did seem to have an effect. He decided to listen to his patients rather than lecture them and they seemed to recover quicker . So he adopted an active listening and intuiting approach one that his daughter carried into an expressive art therapy movement .

One then goes to study at a college which has banks of video equipment so that students can counsel each other ,film themselves and play back to watch intensely what happened and why and when -

One then goes to an interview to become a lecturer in person centred therapy if one has the skills one passes the interview and becomes a Lecturer in Further Education . One may then start up a Person Centred Creative Expressive Therapy Institute course of ones own , in ones own country and what it takes to make this all happen is

                    warmth/prizing, congruence/genuiness,  and empathy.

Look up Carl Rogers and the film Gloria

No but I have those credentials by the barrowload not going to list them all here

@jacpod -- Thank you. I dug out information on the therapy technique and its history of which I was confused regarding its origin. The technique itself I was cognizant of, but had no concept as to how it fit into the overall scheme of psychology. I am now much more informed.

The other question is, how does Tarot figure into this? Are we talking about the various games or tarotology? If the latter, I don't see how it would be useful in therapy.

@evidentialist No I just sometimes do this kind of tarot reading for people if they ask or are interested; and its another way of being person- centred to see what they are making of the images rather than me 'telling' them , ('being the expert' -)

So they may have a love or a fear of an image and we can talk about that and the meanings are always in their gift not mine so it becomes their unfolding story. I have never done a reading in this way that hasn't ended in an 'aha!' moment of some kind because it was their story and they were always going to be heading towards some sort of completion. Whihc is why they came , to find a way in or out of something - I don't think the cards are magic they are certainly highly symbolic showing ways of being -but if believing in the cards helps someone to get where they need to go because of how they interpret the images - I wouldn't argue wth it . there are always new insights to be had throughout life.

Tarot s a time honored means of divination. I have always helped the people for whom I have done readings and amazed them as well but you get out of the readings what you put into them.

@Beamieupscottie -- That is Tarotology. There are also several games, some of them rather complicated.


They can be fun.


It has been proven that one can sense colors and color patterns with their hands. As you shuffle in communion with the Universe asking for guidance from positive forces - not God necessarily, the cards are sensed especially unconsciously and you place them in the order needed to answer the question. I have never been wrong and convinced a lot of skeptics.


I don't. They don't work.


Im curious to know if youre able to explain how tarot cards work?

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