Tarot as Inspiration for Ritual


For Seekers – Practices for Soul & Spirit – Tarot

I use Tarot in my own ritual and meditations so a posting on the card as an inspiration for spiritual / contemplative practice usually works it way into the week.This week I’ve been exploring the 4 of Fire from the Gaian Tarot.

Like so many of the cards in the Gaian Tarot, the guide to practice is right there in the image.  A woman stands tall under the full moon in a circle of candles.  She knows her own power and communes with the power of the Greater Than that guides her.  She herself is dressed in bright orange representing her own inner fire emerging.  Just looking at the image my spine grows taller!

I’ve spent a few mornings sitting in contemplation with the card, studying its details.  I love the circle of candles.  There are 4 tall or pillar candles and 4 sets of 3 smaller candles. I began to think of them as each representing some aspect of the divine or prayer intention.  The larger pillar candles represent spirit guides or faces of the divine.  The smaller candles represent our own prayers and supplications.  And, as you can imagine, I began to think about replacing the candles with Tarot cards to create a ritual for myself.

I’ll share my process that you may want to replicate, but let this just be a template for inspiring your own 4 of Fire ritual.

 Step One:  Prepare yourself to be in ritual space / to be open to the Greater Than (by whatever name you call This).  I actually was in the process of doing my morning meditations using Caitlin Matthew’s Celtic Devotional.

 Step Two:  Set your intention for the whole of the ritual.  I set an intention to move forward in my work to be of service to the healing of people and the planet.

 Step Three:  Identify your pillars.  I decided to use just the Major Arcana cards from the Gaian Tarot.  I separated them out and then consciously choose 4 Majors by looking at them face up.  I put them out in the 4 corners around me.

 Step Four:  Identify your prayer and supplication cards.  As elemental energies inspire me (and fit so wonderfully with the elementally named suits of the Gaian Tarot), I divided the Minor Arcana into its 4 suits of numbered and people cards.  I then consciously choose from each suit a card to represent a gratitude (something that I already had in my life and wanted to acknowledge); a challenge (either an on-going struggle or something anticipated), and a final one to represent a vision of me fully living out the intention.

 Step Five:  Let the acknowledgements, prayers, and supplications flow.  I started by acknowledging the energies of the Major Arcana cards as guides to be with me in the process.  I then moved through each element looking at the images to guide the words of my heart in offering gratitude, requesting help, and naming the vision.

 Step Six:  Close the ritual with gratitude for what you have received and final acknowledgements.

You may also want to write down / document your layout.  I work with The Sacred Journey:  Daily Journal for Your Soul and there are lots of pages with circular images so I wrote my cards down in different color pens to have as something to go back to … when I need some more spine tingling ritual.

I hope this might inspire your own ritual life or be of support to your deep intentions.  Feel free to ask questions and I’d love to know how it goes.  Be well!

Leave a Comment

August 3, 2011, 9:56 pm auntiecarol69

i found your writing, especially your descriptive writing of the Gaian Tarot Four of Fire very detailed, descriptive and quite lovely. The ritual was well written with its easy to understand step by step instructions. I am unfamiliar with the Gaian Tarot. I know some Tarot experts believe fire corresponds to swords and others link the element to wands. I am knowing I am happy I discovered your mellow and encouraging Tarot site.
BTW I believe 240 word limit on Facebook is too limiting.
Deck I use is the Quest one. I like its details and equally so its artwork. IOW it speaks to me.

August 3, 2011, 11:23 pm Carolyn

So glad you have come by my site and found its postings descriptive and helpful. Yes, there can be a difference of opinion about the fire correspondence, but in the Gaian Tarot all the suits are labeled directly as the elements so that is clear. It is a wonderful deck and you can see all the images on http://www.gaiantarot.com. I do not know the Quest deck, but will have to check it out. Each deck has gifts to offer!

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