The Major Arcana
Today’s focus will be the major arcana – one of two parts (the other being the minor arcana) that make up the tarot deck.
There are 22 cards within the major arcana and, as mentioned in my previous post, these cards are symbols of the collective knowledge of human experience. They are archetypes. For those unclear on what that is - according to Jungian psychology an archetype is a thought or image that exists in all individual psyches based on the collective unconscious ideas that we have inherited, such as The Warrior, the Hero, the damsel in distress etc.
Back to the cards. Each card is given a name and a number. Now these names sometimes change depending on whose deck you’re working with, but more often than not they stick with the same ones. In a reading you will give the major arcana more weight than you would the other cards, they are the soul lessons you need to work on or pay attention to.
The idea that the cards of the major arcana form a unit is not a new one, one of the more popular views is that the cards show the journey of inner growth with each card a representation of the various phases and experiences one must go through to attain wholeness.
Cards of the Major Arcana:
0 – The Fool (Innocence, new path, leap of faith)
1 – The Magician (Self control, taking charge, teaching skills)
2 – The High Priestess (Intuition, spirituality, letting go)
3 – The Empress (Abundance, fertility, home)
4 – The Emperor (Father figure, stability, discipline, leadership)
5 – The Hierophant (High education, religion, higher self, advice)
6 – The Lovers (love, compatibility, emotional success, choices)
7 – The Chariot (Control, balance, Triumph)
8 – Strength (Inner strength, courage, self discipline)
9 – The Hermit (Cautious, time out, letting go, learning from the past)
10 – Wheel of Fortune (Luck changing, turn for the better, gambling)
11 – Justice (Legal system, truth, control, injustice)
12 – The Hanged Man (Self sacrifice, holding back, seeing things from a different perspective)
13 – Death (a new start, changes, transformation)
14 – Temperance (moderation, spiritual growth, words of wisdom)
15 – The Devil (Slave to something, abuse, jealousy, greed)
16 – The Tower (wake up call, taking a fall, ruin and renewal)
17 – The Star (Goals, guidance, daydreaming)
18 – The Moon (Intuition, something hidden, something to overcome)
19 – The Sun (Happiness, positive, success)
20 – Judgment (Decisions, results of choices, problems to overcome)
21 – The World (Successful completion, karma, travel, growth of the soul)