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The Death Tarot Card and More: How to Read

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Dipping your toes into tarot serves as a fun and exciting activity. Many people find it peaceful and calming to shuffle the cards and use their intuition to choose a few. However, the peace and calm often ends for beginning readers when they pull the Death tarot card!

But the truth is, this card isn’t as scary as it seems. Let’s get into some of the more common meanings of the Death card.

What the Death Tarot Card Means

First, we feel the need to point out that the Death Tarot card isn’t scary for one simple reason. Science doesn’t support tarot as reliable. So, no matter which cards you draw, there isn’t any guarantee that something will happen in your life.

In fact, the only surefire way that tarot can impact your life is if you make decisions based on it. As a result, every responsible tarot reader or psychic will tell you to only act on the messages you receive in readings if it makes sense for you to do so. Following the advice you receive in tarot card readings without thinking it through might lead you to make unwise decisions.

That being said, a lot of people consider the Death card as a representation of positive things in their lives. While there isn’t ever just one way to read tarot, the Death card commonly signifies a type of rebirth. This rebirth might take the form of the person reinventing an aspect of their life for the better. Also, it may symbolize the closing of a chapter and the beginning of a new one.

So, when you draw the Death card, think about the things you want to change in your life. Maybe you want to get more in shape, move to a new place, go to therapy, or start a new career. Remember, only make the changes that seem healthy for you to make.

The Death Card Reversed

Just when you thought you’d mastered the Death tarot card, here comes a plot twist! There’s a second way the Death card appears, and for some readers, it changes the meaning.

Sometimes, when you’re doing a reading, you’ll pull the Death card out in reverse. Some readers choose to turn the card around and read it the regular way. However, others keep it in the reverse and glean an entirely different meaning from it.

For many tarot readers, a reversed card indicates that the card’s upright meaning is blocked. So, a person who pulls the Death card in reverse might read the card to mean that a change is needed, but something is keeping the reader from changing.

Other Significant Cards in the Tarot Deck

Tarot Deck Borderless Vintage Tarot cards with Guidebook image 1

A normal tarot deck contains 78 cards, all with different meanings. Two categories of tarot cards exist in each deck: the major arcana and the minor arcana.

Think of the major arcana as the most significant cards in the deck. These 22 cards tell a story that starts with the Fool, a naive but optimistic character setting out on an adventure, and ends with The World, a wise and all-encompassing card.

If you’re looking to buy a tarot deck, Etsy has many options.

Major Arcana Breakdown

Here is the breakdown of all the major arcana cards:

  • The Fool: Bright and optimistic, the Fool card indicates the start of a new journey.
  • The Magician: A perfect manifestation card, the Magician indicates that you’re ready to bring something into being.
  • The High Priestess: Access your inner intuition and higher self.
  • The Empress: This feminine, mothering card often reflects a soft, yet confident and commanding energy. It may indicate a pregnancy.
  • The Emperor: As the Empress’s counterpart, the Emperor serves as a strong masculine energy.
  • The Hierophant: This card refers to deep learning and wisdom.
  • The Lovers: Romantic and sensual, the Lovers may refer to true love. It may also indicate a deep professional partnership or friendship.
  • The Chariot: Quick-moving, the Chariot indicates speeding in a specific direction, usually toward a goal.
  • Strength: When the going gets tough, the Strength card comes in to reflect humanity’s ability to persevere.
  • The Hermit: Sometimes, we need to retreat to access our inner wisdom. That’s exactly what the Hermit wants us to do.
  • The Wheel: Nothing lasts forever, and the Wheel indicates that by referring to the changing of life’s seasons.
  • Justice: All actions have consequences, some good and some bad. With the Justice card, what you sow is what you reap.
  • The Hanged Man: This upside-down man demonstrates taking a pause. It may also indicate being stuck.
  • Death: We’ve already gone into it!
  • Temperance: Everyone needs balance, and this card is there to remind you to take it!
  • The Devil: We all have vices, but it’s important to keep them in moderation. Do not be led astray by your temptations.
  • The Tower: The great reorganizing. Everything that is not in alignment with who you want to be must go.
  • The Star: You have great potential within you. Access it and let it shine bright.
  • The Moon: Your intuition runs deep, and you might need to push past the surface to access it. But deep down, you know what to do.
  • The Sun: Brilliant and radiant, you shine. This card indicates a life filled with happiness.
  • Judgment: Everyone goes through times of great awakening and transformation, and this card reflects when those times happen.
  • The World: You have been through a transformation and now have everything you need to know at your fingertips.

The Minor Arcana Breakdown

Barnes & Noble

Too many minor arcana cards exist for us to break them all down. However, we can tell you about the four general suits they fall into.

First, there’s the suit of wands. Passionate and fiery, wands talk about all the things that get us charged up, from relationships to personal goals.

Then, come the cups, represented by the element of water. These cards speak of deep emotions, platonic and romantic love, and inner knowing.

Next, the swords show up, and they represent air. Most of the time, the swords speak about our thoughts and intellect.

Finally, the pentacles round out the deck. In these cards, you’ll find references to stability, finances, and staying grounded.

If you want to learn more about reading tarot, we recommend grabbing a book from Barnes & Noble and sitting down with it as you pull cards.

Getting in Touch with Yourself

Even though there’s nothing scientific that backs up tarot, many people find it a helpful tool to use as they try to become more aware of themselves and how they’re feeling. If you want to go on an even deeper dive into your inner psyche, we recommend using this guide to help you find a therapist.

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