camelia elias, carolus zoya

On May 25 we celebrate World Tarot Day. The way people celebrate is by making gifts in the form of free readings – which of course, make a lot more sense than the computer generated ones – discounted tarot related merchandise, or some other form of honoring the beautiful tools for divination that make our lives so much more interesting than without them.

I made a contribution too, in the form of a competition. I asked people on infamous Facebook to formulate a question. The one who would pose the strangest question in the comment box (both on my Facebook wall and on my Facebook page dedicated to Taroflexions) would win my pledge to write a post about it on Taroflexions. I gave people a short guideline as follows: ‘Don’t pose absurd questions for the sake of being absurd. That’s not funny. The question has to be posed in earnest, however, strange, crazy, or indeed, absurd.’ I then gave an example from my daily repertoire:

Question: My girlfriend is not a romantic, and I would really like to give her flowers. Would bringing her a cabbage instead impress her?

camelia elias, carolus zoya

Answer: Yes, don’t bring her a tulip. Bring her a Brussel sprout that she can pin to her chest, thinking it’s the best camelia ever. That will do it.

Fortunately 10 people wanted to play and celebrate with me – some posing questions long after the celebration day itself – and I got some strange questions indeed. But the one I liked the best was the one formulated by my friend and fellow cartomancer, James Wells:

‘How do my tarot decks know that I love them?’

So here is a short reading for this very relevant question, which I’m quite certain most cartomancers can relate to. For this reading I’ve used the classical French Cross layout with a slight modification so it addresses the question precisely.

camelia elias, carolus zoya

A straightforward answer would be this:

Insofar as James adopts the position of knowing in his work with the cards that what goes around comes around (Wheel of Fortune), the cards allow him to take any direction that he sees fit (The Fool), yet in accordance with the aim of seeking the truth (Justice) in order to illuminate some issue that most of us want clarity about (The Star).

If we add the numerical value of the 4 cards on the table (10+0+8+17=35, 3+5=8), we notice that Justice insists on sitting in the center, doubling its own presence in the spread.

So, the cards know that you, James, love them, simply because you take their truth seriously. The cards also know that you love them because you trust them, as you trust a good guiding star. The cards know that you love them because you are neutral in your approach to them, yet while putting your shoulder to the wheel, you are ready to go unexpected places.

Good luck to you, my friend. Your pursuit in cartomancy is the right one. Why else read the cards, if not to arrive at the truth? Lord only knows how much lies we are all fed – especially from the public sphere – so using the cards to fix our blind spots with is indeed a most noble endeavor and worth our while.

Thank you for your question, and for honoring the World Tarot Day with me.

Thank you also to the other players. I’ve enjoyed all your questions.


Note on the cards: Carolus Zoya Marseille Tarot, ca. 1790, facsimile of the original in the collection of K. Frank Jensen.

3 thoughts on “WORLD TAROT DAY

  1. Walter B. says:

    Hi Camelia –

    found the spread answering the ‘odd question’ quite fascinating.

    I would interpret this Cross as follows:

    Justice – the spirit of the Tarot – offers the reader two perfectly equal paths:
    the Left Hand path is the way of fatalism, the Right Hand path is the way of the (Taoist) fool.
    The first one is more passive, accepting, very much concerned about achieving ataraxia.
    The second path is more active, following one’s innate inclinations with ease and determination, no matter what the world thinks.

    Done correctly, both approaches lead to the stars (since it is mostly a matter of inborn inclination which way to go)…


  2. Antonio says:

    Hello Camelia, I really like your blog and I’m looking forward to acquiring your book on Marseilles Tarot. None the lees there is something I can see in your blog and in many Marseilles readers that I’m concerned about, this is that minor arcana are not often included in readings. I consider this hampering, as we break down the deck and reduce it to only 22 cards. Defending the use of only the 22 Major Arcana when reading the Marseilles Tarot, is really enhancing the use of Rider decks. In fact, if the reason why only Major Arcana are read is because they are easier, then we might as well read a deck like Symbolon with 78 universal archtypes, I guess. I believe this is a shame as the Marseilles Tarot may end up being reduced to only 22 cards, a very reduced deck.

    Congratulations for your blog, and I would really like to know your opinion about this issue.
    Best wishes.

    1. Camelia Elias says:

      Hi Antonio, Thanks for your kind words. As a matter of fact I always use the full deck in my readings with the Marseille, and I have many examples of such readings on the blog. Happy hunting. My book is also pretty comprehensive about it too, so I hope you will enjoy it when you get it. Good luck.

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