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Many people rely on tarot cards orastrology to give them insight into their lives. They may be seekinganswers to questions about their future or their love life. However,some may question which method – tarot or astrology – provides themost accurate information.
Which is more accurate: tarot orastrology? Tarot reading provides more personalized, specificinformation for the person seeking a reader’s advice. Thus, it canbe seen as more accurate than astrology, which gives a moregeneralized personality profile. However, both tarot and astrologyrely on the intuition of the person giving the information.
When faced with a time of crisis or concern about what the future may hold, the ancient arts of tarot reading or astrology can provide some comfort. This is where the comparison ends, however, for both forms of “fortune-telling” are quite different in their history, tools, and outcome.
Differences BetweenTarot and Astrology
Both tarot and astrology readings relyon a “reader” – a person who has probably studied the art ofastrology or tarot and provides a “reading” to someone seekingtheir counsel. For both, the reader plays an integral role – andboth tarot and astrology readers rely on intuitions, or stronghunches about peoples’ behavior and actions, that they use whenproviding a reading.
Tarot readings are very personal, inthat a tarot reading utilizes cards that are then revealed to theperson seeking advice. Each reading will be unique based on:
- Cards that are drawn
- Question being answered
- The intuition of the tarot card reader
The message a person receives in atarot reading can be very accurate and personal to their situationand the question they have about their life. A situation can beaddressed, and the person receiving the reading may feel they havebeen given information that can help them make a change in theirlife.
Astrology claims to use a more“scientific” approach that is general in nature. Astrologistsstudy charts of the stars, as well as planets in our solar systems inorder to make a forecast – or prediction – about a person’s life.
Astrologists rely on cycles andpatterns in the universe and connect them to human behavior. Thesepatterns may tell about a person’s:
- Natural strengths
- Areas of their life where they may be prone to difficulty
Although still relying on the reader’sskill and experience, astrology readings tend to apply to manysituations.
What is Tarot?
Tarot is one of the oldest forms of psychic reading, some say dating back as far as the 14th century. Tarot, as we recognize it today, began in the 17th century. At this time, some believed playing cards could hold magical properties. People began using them for mystical and fortune-telling purposes. The origin of the famous designs that became associated with tarot cards is unknown.
Tarot Card Readings
Tarot reading involves the use of adeck of cards, each one with a vivid and symbolic image. Each decktypically contains 78 cards. They are used by psychics and peoplewho claim to be spiritual mediums. Psychics are people who seem tohave a natural ability to predict what will happen in the future, orwhat people are thinking. Spiritual mediums are said to be able toreceive messages that are passed to them from the spirit world.
Whether being used by a psychic orspiritual medium, the person doing the reading tends to rely onintuition – being able to accurately judge a person’s character inorder to make predictions about them.
Typically, a person seeks a tarot cardreading when they have a question about their life. They will meetwith the reader and ask their question, such as, “will I find lovethis year?” or “are my finances going to improve?” The readerthen lays out the cards in a particular way, using the symbols andintuition to guide the answer.
Each of the78 cards features a picture that is tied to a symbolic message. These images help stimulate the imagination of the tarot reader. Thedeck has two main parts:
- Major Arcana – consists of 22 cards that represent the larger themes in life, such as the journey towards love
- Minor Arcana – contains 56 cards that represent the daily ups and downs of life, and the decisions we make
The 22 cards of the Major Arcana arethe most recognizable of the tarot deck. They are:
- #0 The Fool – this card represents the open, willing energy of someone who is young and starting out in life. It encourages the person seeking counsel to embrace the future, without worry.
- #1 The Magician – this card appearing in a tarot reading tells the seeker that they are ready to move forward and have everything they need to meet their goals.
- #2 The High Priestess – this card represents awareness and urges you to follow your instincts.
- #3 The Empress – a feminine card representing compassion, beauty, and love.
- #4 The Emperor – structure, authority, and leadership are what this card stands for.
- #5 The Hierophant – considered a messenger from the heavens bringing spirituality and guidance.
- #6 The Lovers – represents the close relationships in life and the consequences of making a choice.
- #7 The Chariot – this card is connected to ambition and determination.
- # 8 Strength – the card does not refer to physical strength, but inner strength and courage.
- #9 The Hermit – reminds the individual to be very still and listen to the messages the world is giving them.
- #10 Wheel of Fortune – this card reminds you that nothing is forever, and to enjoy the moment.
- #11 Justice – represents karma or the idea that one should be careful in how they treat others or face the consequences of their actions.
- #12 The Hanged Man – a card that says you may need to let go of something in order to make a change that will benefit you in the long run.
- #13 Death – thank goodness this card does not represent your physical death, but rather of cycles: endings and beginnings of relationships, fears or circumstances that will lead to better things.
- #14 Temperance – the “go with the flow” card that encourages moderation, peace, and patience.
- #15 The Devil – a disturbing card, to say the least, it represents the feeling you may have of powerlessness. However, it’s appearance actually means you are being trapped by your own unwillingness to do something about your situation.
- #16 The Tower – this card is the most dreaded one to receive, as it represents destruction. Something in your life must be destroyed but will be replaced by something even stronger.
- #17 The Star – represents hope, renewal and having faith in the future.
- #18 The Moon – this card represents internal worries and anxiety, which can hold us back.
- #19 The Sun – seen as a happy, joyful card, it is a positive sign that you are surrounded by good people and situations.
- #20 Judgment – a serious card that urges you to think about where you are, and where you want to go.
- #21 The World – the last card of the Major Arcana, it stands for success and completion.
Besides hiring a psychic or spiritualmedium to read the cards for you, many people purchase a deck oftarot cards and do personal readings themselves. People who do sobelieve they can receive spiritual advice and answers to problems andquestions they have.
When using the cards alone, it is donein much the same way as going to a tarot card reader. The personposes a question and then lays a certain number of cards out, usuallyin a simpler-looking layout than a professional would use. They maybe seeking answers to questions such as:
Personal tarot readings can also be done online. The success of the cards is seen to rely on the beliefs people hold in them. In other words, if you believe, then the supernatural force of the cards will guide the layout and give you answers. Of course, not everyone believes this, and many think tarot cards hold no magical properties whatsoever.
What is Astrology?
Astrology as a science applies toastrological charts and mathematics combined with ancient beliefs. Some study it for years in order to accurately read the charts andinterpret the results. Humans have long searched for answers abouttheir life and the world around them. Astrology uses the positionsof the stars and planets of our solar system to predict future eventsand the behaviors of people based on their star sign.
A combination of stress and uncertainty about the future is an ailment for which astrology can seem like the perfect balm. –The Atlantic
There are 12 star signs, also known aszodiac signs, and everyone is born into one of them. This is whatmost people know about astrology. 7th house astrology represents. Each zodiac sign represents theposition of the constellations on the day someone was born. Thismeans that many people have the same star sign, yet the descriptionsfor each sign are quite general.
Each star sign has a personality profile associated with it. Knowing your profile, astrologers believe, can help you keep an eye on your actions and be aware of how you might respond in certain situations. Much information about zodiac signs can be found here.
Here are the signs, their birthdayspan, and a brief description of the characteristics for each:
- Aries – March 21-April 19. Represented by a ram; bold and ambitious
- Taurus – April 20 – May 20. The bull; they enjoy calm, relaxing environments
- Gemini – May 21 – June 20. A set of twins is the representation; busy and productive
- Cancer – June 21 – July 22. The crab; highly intuitive
- Leo – July 23 – August 22. A lion; theatrical and passionate
- Virgo – August 23 – September 22. Represented by the goddess of agriculture; logical and practical
- Libra – September 23 – October 22. Represented by scales; seeks harmony and balance
- Scorpio – October 23 – November 21. A scorpion; passion and power are its trademark
- Sagittarius – November 22 – December 21. The archer, always seeking knowledge
- Capricorn – December 22 – January 19. A goat; can navigate physical and emotional issues
- Aquarius – January 20 – February 18. The mystical healer, a humanitarian
- Pisces – February 19 – March 20. Two fish; caught in fantasy and reality
Astrology readings, also known ashoroscopes, are popular in magazines and online blogs. However, theytend to be quite general and apply to many situations. This makespeople skeptical of their accuracy and usefulness.
An astrology reading begins with thebirthday of a person. This can also include the exact time and evenlocation. Next, the astrologist figures out what star sign theplanets are in. They use mathematical models and scientificknowledge of the planets to determine this. Each planet has its owncharacteristics, just like star signs.
Once that information is gathered,astrologists use this to make a complex prediction about a person’slife and prospects. However, many people think these predictions areso broad that they are not very reliable.
Different Types of Astrology
Within astrology, there aredifferent methods and philosophies. The main form of astrologypracticed is based on a person’s birthday. But there are otherforms as well.
- Natal Astrology – the branch we have been discussing, which makes predictions and suggestions based on the day someone was born.
- Mundane Astrology – this type of astrology uses the position of the planets to make predictions about the world and humanity in general – war, economies, and national affairs.
- Interrogatory Astrology – the practice of using the science of astrology to make specific predictions about a person’s objectives or events within their life.
Astrology in OtherCultures
Western astrology, which most of us arefamiliar with, is based on a person’s birthday and the position ofthe stars, planets, and constellations on that day. However, it isnot the only type of astrology that is practiced. Hindu astrologyand Chinese astrology also have a large following in other parts ofthe world.
Based on the literature we have asevidence; it seems Hindu astrology branched off from what we callWestern astrology over 2000 years ago. Today, many modern Hinduspractice astrology. For example, newborn babies are often namedbased on the astrological charts of the Hindus. Decisions are madeabout:
These decisions are all planned byfirst consulting the astrological calendar.
Hindu astrology is very similar toWestern astrology, in that they use 12 signs. The major differenceis that the way of measuring the movement of planets and stars isdone differently. Many Hindus believe that planets and otherheavenly bodies influence the lives of people on Earth, often via aphenomenon that you may have heard of – karma.
The traditional use of astrology inChina is quite different from Western astrology. Some terms,however, may be familiar – such as the concepts of yin and yang(opposites creating harmony and balance).
Chinese astrology was first only usedto predict political moves and plan major events and decisions. Unlike Western astrology, there are no zodiac signs. Instead, thesky is divided into twelve animal signs that represent twelvedifferent types of personality. Many people are familiar with theirChinese zodiac sign. Mine is the dragon! The Chinese zodiac isbased on cycles of years – 12 years to be exact – and lunar months.
Other Types ofFortunetelling
Humanshave sought answers to important questions in their lives in multipleways. Fortunetelling has taken many forms besides tarot reading andastrology. Two other popular methods include palm reading and dreamanalysis.
Also known as palmistry, the practiceof evaluating a person’s future by reading the palm of their handhas been around for thousands of years. The modern practiceoriginated in the 1830s in Great Britain. Palm readers today usevarious lines to analyze their size and where they intersect. Theyalso examine other characteristics of the hand, such as
- Hand Shape
- Skin patters
- Skin texture and color
- The flexibility of the hand
In apalm reading, the reader looks at the person’s dominant hand andexamines it based on palmistry charts they have studied. Thesecharts are tied to a person’s:
- Love life
- Financial situation
- Other major events
Thepalm reader can then make a prediction, based on what they see.
Anotherway people try to find out what will happen in their future is byhaving someone analyze their dreams. This method has also beenaround for thousands of years. It has even been mentioned in the OldTestament. Dreams that predict the future, or precognitive dreams,are a topic of debate among psychologists and psychics alike.
Therehave been many famous instances of dreams predicting the future – andthen proving to be true. The most famous is when Abraham Lincoln hada dream about a funeral at the White House. He told his wife aboutthe dream, but neither of them took it to heart. Two weeks later hewas assassinated. It is easy to see why this story helped supportthe notion that dreams can predict the future.