The Tarot's original author is unknown. It is also uncertain as to exactly where and when the Tarot came into existence, but some believe that it originated in Ancient Egypt about 3,500 years ago and was brought to Europe by the Rom, or Gypsies, as they travelled to Europe from India.
The actual word Tarot is made up of the two Egyptian words, 'Tar' meaning 'royal' and 'ot' meaning 'road' – the Royal Road (Destiny or Spiritual Pathway). The oracle's first appearance in Europe seems to have been in the late fourteenth century, most likely in Italy.
The increasing religious intolerance of the early Christians, and their attempts to suppress esoteric knowledge, wisdom and sacred truths from humanity, in order to instil and enforce their own 'Man's Law', forced the philosophers of the day to encrypt the esoteric secrets into the Tarot cards to keep the ancient wisdom, mysteries and truths hidden and safe from manipulation and persecution.
The Tarot was devised using the principles of the Cabala (the Tree of Life – Yggdrasil is displayed prominently within the deck) and the Runes, Astrology, the Elements and Numerology and many other oracles of old. The Tarot also incorporates and co-relates to the I Ching, colour and its vibration and influence, and the Chakras. Symbolism plays an intricate part and is synonymous amongst all the oracles.
The Tarot consists of a deck of seventy eight (78) cards in total. This is made up of 22 Major Arcana cards numbered from 0 to 21 and the Minor Arcana of 56 cards.
The Major Arcana is composed of twenty-two cards, which is the number of letters in the Hebrew alphabet, the number of the Runic Pathways in the Tree of Life trestleboard, and is a Master number in the science of Numerology.
The ten numbered cards in each suit of the Minor Arcana, correspond with the ten sephiram in the Trestleboard of the Toth.
The Major Arcana has direct relevance to the Hebrew Cabala because not only does the number of cards correspond to the number of letters in the Hebrew alphabet, but many of the cards suggest symbolism for Yggdrasil, the Tree of Life, that forms the basis of much of the Kabbalistic wisdom.
The Major Arcana depicts the different stages of life we must go through until our 'soul journey 'is complete. Throughout the nature of our existence on this planet as humans, we will encounter several beginnings and endings throughout our lifetime, that are represented by the archetypes portrayed on the cards.
The Major Arcana depicts matters relating to the soul, spirit or destiny of our lives that often indicate Karmic lessons and themes that we must experience in this lifetime. They point out issues that are occurring within our psyche, rather than external, everyday events, as depicted in the Minor Arcana.
The number of cards in the Major Arcana, 22, is also a Master Number in the science of Numerology.
The Minor Arcana consists of the remaining 56 cards, and depict the more ordinary details that form a meaningful pattern in our lives. They portray the day-to-day events in our daily lives. These events are not cataclysmic or life-changing situations, but rather the daily routines of family, home, work and survival.
The 56 cards of the Minor Arcana are divided into four sets of fourteen cards; each suit consisting of 10 numbered cards and 4 Court cards. The suits, Cups, Pentacles, Swords and Wands, co-relate to the four basic elements of life:
Water - Cups; Earth – Swords;
Air – Pentacles; and Water - Wands
NUMEROLOGY - The Vibration and Energy of Numbers
ANGEL NUMBERS - Repeating Number Sequences
ANGELS ARCHANGELS and ASCENDED MASTERS