How Many Major Arcana Are There in Tarot?

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How Many Major Arcana Are There in Tarot?

When it comes to tarot card reading, the deck is composed of two main types of cards: the major arcana and the minor arcana. While the minor arcana consists of 56 cards divided into four suits, the major arcana holds significant importance as it represents profound and life-altering experiences. In this blog post, we will delve into the realm of the major arcana and explore the question—how many major arcana are there in tarot?

The Origin of Tarot

Before we delve into the number of major arcana cards, let’s touch upon the origin of tarot. Tarot cards were initially created in the 15th century in Europe, primarily in Italy and France. They were originally used for playing card games, but over the years, their mystical and symbolic qualities have made them popular for divination purposes.

Understanding the Major Arcana

The major arcana in a tarot deck comprises 22 cards, numbered from 0 to 21. Each card holds specific symbolism and represents different archetypal energies, spiritual lessons, and life stages. These cards have a more profound impact on a tarot reading and can indicate significant life events, insights, and transformations.

The Fool’s Journey

One popular interpretation of the major arcana cards is known as “The Fool’s Journey.” This concept suggests that the cards, when arranged in a specific order, tell the story of the Fool as he embarks on a transformative journey through life. Each card represents a different step or stage of the Fool’s progress, from innocence to enlightenment.

Numbering and Names of the Major Arcana

Now, let’s dive into the 22 major arcana cards and their individual names:

Number Name
0 The Fool
1 The Magician
2 The High Priestess
3 The Empress
4 The Emperor
5 The Hierophant
6 The Lovers
7 The Chariot
8 Strength
9 The Hermit
10 Wheel of Fortune
11 Justice
12 The Hanged Man
13 Death
14 Temperance
15 The Devil
16 The Tower
17 The Star
18 The Moon
19 The Sun
20 Judgment
21 The World

The Significance of the Major Arcana

Each major arcana card has its own unique meaning and symbolism. However, the specific interpretation of each card may vary slightly depending on the tarot deck and the reader’s intuition. Here is a brief overview of the major arcana cards and their general significance:

  • The Fool: Represents new beginnings, innocence, and spontaneity.
  • The Magician: Signifies manifestation, willpower, and untapped potential.
  • The High Priestess: Symbolizes intuition, hidden knowledge, and the subconscious mind.
  • The Empress: Represents fertility, abundance, and maternal instincts.
  • The Emperor: Denotes authority, structure, and stability.
  • The Hierophant: Signifies tradition, spirituality, and religious beliefs.
  • The Lovers: Symbolizes love, partnerships, and inner harmony.
  • The Chariot: Represents willpower, triumph, and overcoming obstacles.
  • Strength: Denotes courage, inner strength, and resilience.
  • The Hermit: Signifies introspection, solitude, and seeking inner guidance.

Continuing with the remainder of the major arcana:

  • Wheel of Fortune: Represents cycles, fate, and destiny.
  • Justice: Symbolizes fairness, truth, and karmic balance.
  • The Hanged Man: Signifies surrender, letting go, and gaining a new perspective.
  • Death: Denotes transformation, endings, and the start of something new.
  • Temperance: Represents balance, harmony, and moderation.
  • The Devil: Symbolizes temptation, materialism, and unhealthy attachments.
  • The Tower: Signifies sudden upheaval, destruction, and revelation.
  • The Star: Represents hope, inspiration, and spiritual guidance.
  • The Moon: Denotes intuition, uncertainty, and hidden emotions.
  • The Sun: Symbolizes joy, happiness, and vitality.
  • Judgment: Signifies self-reflection, rebirth, and awakening.
  • The World: Represents completion, fulfillment, and the end of a cycle.

In Conclusion

The major arcana holds immense significance in tarot card readings, offering profound insights into one’s life journey and transformational experiences. Understanding the 22 major arcana cards, their meanings, and their order within the deck can provide a solid foundation for anyone interested in exploring tarot more deeply. These cards serve as gateways to self-discovery, personal growth, and spiritual enlightenment.

Remember, while the major arcana provide guidance and reveal important themes, the interpretation should always be done in conjunction with the querent’s personal circumstances, emotional state, and the influence of the surrounding cards. Tarot is a powerful tool that can help uncover hidden truths, navigate life’s challenges, and tap into one’s intuitive wisdom.

Whether you are a tarot enthusiast, spiritual seeker, or simply curious about the mystical world of divination, the major arcana offers a fascinating lens through which to explore the depths of the human experience.

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How Many Major Arcana Are There in Tarot?