Wednesday, September 22, 2010
But the idea of believing in or not believing in tarot seems novel to me. It's like asking if one believes in symbolism or art or history. Does one believe in deriving personal meaning from a painting, a poem, a piece of music? It's not something one believes or doesn't, it's something one either does or not. I know there are people who view art but do not personalize the experience. They see it either as appealing or not but don't necessarily apply any significance to their own lives or thought process. But if you asked them, "Do you believe in art?" I am quite certain they would look at you puzzled and ask, "What do you mean? Do I believe in that painting over there? Of course I do, it exists. Just like this chair I am sitting in or the vase of flowers on that table." That is how I view tarot. It just is. It doesn't require a belief to exist, but one can either derive meaning from the cards or not.
Oh, I get it now! I know what you don't believe in. You don't believe in the woo-woo, the psychic predictive fortune-telling, destiny revealing practice of reading tarot. Well, that's ok. Lots of tarot readers don't either. Instead, I would ask if you believe in gaining insight and help with sorting out the confusion of making a decision where no one "right" way is clearly revealed? Do you believe in plumbing the depths of mind and soul to unearth revelations and create new paths for your self to trod? Because tarot can assist with that, too. When you say you don't "believe" in "that stuff" are you, like so many, lumping tarot in with all the charlatans, snake oil salesmen, frauds and thieves that dupe naive people out of their hard-earned money? Or are you simply saying that in order for a reading to have any significance to you, you would first have to believe in the tarot's ability to be relevant to your life? Because if it is the latter, you have a point.
To tarot or not to tarot may be the question, but it's not whether to believe or not in tarot. It's not a religion, it's not a faith. It is more closely aligned with art than science. It is a practice, a discipline, an exercise. It is not, however, a belief. At least, I don't believe so.
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