Convoluted by pompous sanctimony, the Tarot is largely perceived as a joke and a tool of seedy con artists. So-called practitioners of "white" magic go well out of their way to convince everybody that they are the good guys. A lot of people still think that "psychics" like Miss Cleo are what tarot cards are all about.
To make matters worse, many of the people who do believe that the cards contain great secrets see the Tarot in just as negative a light. Rooted in the Occult, Tarot cards are assumed to contain evil spirits and the like. Shrouded in mystery, the word "Occult" in its simplest definition only means "hidden" - in other words: cloaked knowledge. The cards themselves can be extremely powerful in that they do contain symbols. Taken for what they are worth, symbols have a life of their own in the realm of spirituality. And again, the word "Spirituality" inspires awe when in reality, the things in life that we do not fully understand are the same things that are thought of as being spiritual in nature. Tarot cards, in their purpose of bringing unconscious wisdom to the surface, can be utterly terrifying to those who do not wish to know about what may lie behind the veil.
In addition to countless psychics who offer sage advice at doctorate prices, the internet is also home to an ever-growing list of websites offering free tarot reading. Unfortunately most of these sites nothing for the public reputation of the Tarot except make it worse. Too many websites treat tarot reading more like a popularity contest than as a method of divination.
A few occult artists who see Tarot in a different light have congregated online, understanding aspects of the Tarot beyond even the "psychics," presenting the Tarot not as a smokescreen, but as a visual tool used to gain profound insight into the lesser-known aspects of existence. Occultists understand deeper aspects of the Tarot from experience before making their own decks, while by far the majority of Tarot artists approach the cards from the other direction.
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