Secrets of Tarot Numerology:  Lesson 4

By Gary Meister, CTM

A person can spend a lifetime studying the Tarot, and still never know all there is to know.  But – you don’t have to spend a lifetime before you can start doing meaningful Tarot card readings for yourself and your friends and relatives.  You don’t even have to memorize all the meanings in the Little White Book (LWB) that comes with each new deck of Tarot cards.  All you really need to know to get started is one meaning for each card and know it well.  This series of articles will show you an easy way to do that, with Numerology.  

But, this series isn’t only for beginners.  I didn’t learn this system until I had received two Tarot Master Certificates from two different sources, and after nearly 30 years of Tarot study.  And, along with some other systems, I use it to this day.  So – if you are a newcomer to Tarot, this might make your learning curve a little faster.  If you’re a veteran reader, this could be a new technique to add to your arsenal.

A Short Review:  In the past three lessons we have looked at the Tables of Numbers and Elements.  Hopefully, you have memorized them.  

We saw The Fool, #0, as infinite potential, a situation where absolutely anything can happen.  

Number One symbolizes making the decision and taking action on the situation, or a beginning of something new.   What?  Take a look at the Element of the suit and see. 

Number Two is bringing cooperation into the picture, utilizing a combination of talents to make the effort more powerful.  What are we cooperating about?  What Element is the card?  If you have the Elemental Table memorized, it’s easy!

Now... the action has begun and cooperation is taking place.  Looking at the deeper meanings, the action is being created by the positive and negative polarities of the Universe.  And that brings us to Number Three.

Number Three:  This is the creation itself, the expansion of the original idea into concrete form.  Before we can actually create something, we need the creative thought to build upon.  We expand upon the idea and it begins to form the reality.  We take action, we cooperate with the Universe, we utilize our creative thinking, and things become real in our life experience.

In a reading, a Three tells us that it is time for us (or the client) to utilize the creative principles we all have available to us.  As Tarot readers, we don’t tell the future, but Tarot is great at suggesting what we may want to do next.  Three means either use your creativity or expand upon what you have been doing.  What does it refer to?  What is the Element of the card you have drawn?  There’s your answer...

Now... once we have gone into our creative imagination, we need to think things out, to reason, to use our rational mind to make it practical.  That is where the Number Four come in.

Number Four symbolizes reason and practicality.  On a universal level, the creative process can be more or less automatic in its early stages.  The beginning thought (#1) gives birth to a cooperation between your individual spirit and the Universal Spirit and creation is begun (#3).  But, without reason, without turning the creation into something practical (#4), the first three steps just keep happening, over and over, and never become a fully realized reality.

We need to take a close look at what we are doing and plan the creation out rationally.

In a reading, the Number Four, in any suit, calls the client’s attention (or yours if you are reading for yourself) to the need for rational thought, the need for reason, at this point in the project, whatever the project might be.  

For instance: the Four of Cups (Water = love and relationships) could be telling you to take a closer look at your relationship and reason out whether or not you are doing the right thing by it.  Is what you are doing good for the relationship?  If not, reason out what you can do to change it for the better.

The Four of Wands (Fire = imagination, creativity, and, sometimes, intuition) may mean that you need to take a look at how you are imagining your follow-through to see if you are being realistic in your plans.  How does that answer fit into the reading you are doing?  How does it feel to you?  You’re the reader.

Which brings us to Number Five.  In every life, indeed in the life of every creation of any kind, change is inevitable.  Five is the number of change.  The Universe changes as a matter of course and keeps itself balanced through it all.  There must be change!  Without it, nothing could ever happen.  So…change is fine with the Universe.  It is part of the process.  In fact, the only constant that exists is change.

Unfortunately, we humans tend to fight change with everything in us!  We want new things; we want to accomplish our dreams; we want to grow.  But, we want to do it without changing anything!  We want to stay with the familiar, the comfortable.  So – often, change brings about conflict in our life, even crisis!  And it is all within our mind.  We have the power to take part in changes comfortably.  After all, we are an integral part of the very Universe that balances things constantly.

In a reading, the Number Five can often show that the client (or we) skipped past #4 and things are just out of control, depending upon the element of the card drawn.  Or, it can be reminding us to accept the changes in our life.  We might as well; they are going to happen whether we like it or not.  We may as well get used to going with the flow.  Then change won’t be crisis for us!

I’m going to repeat the tables of elements and numbers again, in case you haven’t memorized them yet.  If you have a printer, print them out.  They will make good reference while you work on the memorization.

Table Of Elements:  

Major Arcana = Spirit = spiritual growth

Pentacles = Earth = finances, money, material things

Swords = Air = thoughts, ideas, attitudes

Wands = Fire = imagination, creativity, intuition

Water = Cups = love, relationships, the emotions

Table Of Numbers:

0.        Infinite potential

1.         Action, Beginnings

2.         Cooperation, Coming Together

3.         Creativity, Expansion

4.         Reason, Practicality

5.         Changes, sometimes crises

6.         Peace, Harmony

7.         Success, Learning From One’s Mistakes

8.         Success Through Hard Work

9.         End Of A Cycle Of Life

10.       Completion, Perfection, Endings Leading To New Beginnings.

So – at this point, we have dealt with the meanings of 25 cards, or half of the first 50 we’re dealing with.  At this point, I want you to lay out your 5 fours and 5 fives and think about their meanings.  Try them out in imaginary readings to see how each of them can be best used.

Of course, if you’ve memorized the tables, you already know all fifty of these cards.  At least, in a simplified way...

Another reminder – be sure you have your Tarot notebook and keep it up to date.  I am assuming you already have your chosen deck of Tarot cards to work with.

Next time, we’ll look at the numbers Six and Seven, maybe even Eight, if space permits.  Have fun with your Tarot study.  It can really be life altering.  It was for me!  And, stop by to visit my website.  You might enjoy it.

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Tarot Reflections is published by the American Tarot Association - Copyright (C) 2008 

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