How does a tarot card reading work? Is it Authentic or is it a Parlor Trick?

Tarot Card Readings, how does it work? Is it authentic? Or is it a simple parlor trick that is just fun and games? The truth is, if you are open and comfortable, that will help guidance on how you can have more intentional control over what you create moving forward. You can use almost much anything at hand to tap into your deeper knowing. For some of us tarot is a particularly potent tool for doing this. For others.. .it is a fun parlor game.

I thought about writing this blog post because of my cousin. I get a phone call from her out of the blue one day “I am spiritual. I am psychic.  I can now read tarot cards! Let me do you reading!” (She is in her mid 40s..). I asked her when she started reading Tarot Cards and she said “oh about a week ago! I am now an expert!” I humored her and let her do my reading. She told me that my boyfriend will propose to me in the next week and he loves me and there was another creeping into my life..

I used to do Tarot Card Readings for fun during my high school and college years. I thought it was fun and I made a bit of extra cash for vending machines. Although I never asked for money, people gave me a few quarters for a ‘thank you’. I always appreciated it. I do believe readings work if you believe in them. It is all how you interpret the cards.


First, let’s talk A bit About the History Of Tarot…

17th Century tarot cards by Giuseppe Maria Mitelli

17th Century tarot cards by Giuseppe Maria Mitelli

The Tarot Cards was  first created around the mid-14th century in Europe, tarot cards were not intended for divination purposes but rather for playing various card games. It wasn’t until the late 18th century that tarot cards became a trend to be used for divination purposes.

Tarot Cards can be used for important life areas such as:

  • Divination
  • Spirit Communication
  • Deity Communication
  • Spellwork
  • Business Ventures
  • Love
  • Mental Obstacles
  • Help make decisions based on possible outcomes and problems
  • To better identify and understand people or situations

Choosing the Deck:

  • Choosing a tarot deck for the first time can be somewhat overwhelming. There are thousands of decks out there, with varying art styles and card sizes.  (I like the ones that comes with a guidebook)
  • if the deck doesn’t come with a guidebook, I would suggest you get one. It will help you understand the meanings 🙂


  • Cleanse your deck before you use it for the first time – this helps get rid of any lingering energy that may be left by anyone else who touched it before you obtained it. 
  • Be sure to draw a card a day for personal readings, and record your findings in a tarot journal (just like a diary; or a dream journal)
  • Practice readings with your friends or family. This will help you understand card meanings and learn to read intuitively.

Some Tarot Cards that I love to use (if you are new to Tarot Cards and want to know what kinds to get, here are a few I love)

How does it work?

Just shuffle the cards and you draw some face-up, and then you look at the pictures, interpret them as a story, and apply them to your life. How they actually work? That is the mystery! As you shuffle the cards, clear your mind, take deep breaths and think about the question you want to know the answer to as you shuffle them. 

As you shuffle, and you are not consciously focused on the shuffling, the subconscious is sort of “doing the work,” and arranging the cards to be drawn. And the more “automatic” this process is, the better, for the reasons mentioned above.

Authenticity depends on the practitioner, and there are many different types of practitioners. Some claim to possess psychic abilities or be mediums, some don’t. Majority of Tarot Card readers will walk the fine line between the rational aspects of the practice and the mysterious aspects. The middle path, I find, is ideal for ethical and authentic practice. Why? Because it is very human—no superpowers, here! Just practice! And have fun with it!

Common Myths about Tarot:

  • You must receive your tarot deck as a gift
  • You must keep your tarot deck in a [black] silk bag
  • You have to be a witch to read tarot
  • You must be psychic to read tarot
  • You shouldn’t read tarot while you’re pregnant
  • Don’t let others touch or look at your tarot cards
  • Tarot cards are evil
  • Tarot cards are “the Devil’s work”
  • You can’t read tarot for yourself
  • The Death card means you or a loved one are going to die
  • Reversed cards are always bad

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