In 1894 just north of New Orleans a mysterious female gave me 8 tarot cards then ran away. The cards are The Fool, The Magician, The Lovers, Wheel of Fortune, Death, The Devil, The Star, and The Sun. I never could figure out if she liked me or hated me. I still carry those cards to this day.

Old soldiers know that for the lucky wounds heal, scars remain, and it is best to move on. Grudges only lead to unnecessary battles. Sigmund Freud has had an outsized influence on how you “You Moderns” think. When facing difficulties I prefer planning for the future to psychoanalysis.

I find the Tarot, like life, is not a destination but a guide. It has helped me know when to make minor changes on my passage, or when to start a new. The Tarot makes a great graduation gift. I hope the Major Arcana descriptions below help you on your journey.

21 The World 190315.jpg

True happiness is giving back to the world, sharing what is learned or gained. Signifies cosmic consciousness. On the timeline it represents an ending to a cycle of life, and the pause before the next big cycle beginning with the fool.

Upright: Achievement, realization, journey

Reversed: Seeking personal closure, short-cuts, delays

20 Judgement 190315.jpg

The Sleeping Dead waken from their crypts. Snow-covered mountains shows a winter theme. Signifies the four Cardinal Virtues: fortitude, justice, temperance, and prudence. On the timeline it represents a rite of passage.

Upright: Judgement, rebirth, inner calling, forgiveness

Reversed: Self-doubt, inner critic, ignoring the call

19 Sun 190315.jpg

Some believe this is the best card in Tarot, representing good things and positive outcomes to current struggles. Signifies the happiness only achieved after a long journey. On the timeline it represents accomplishment.

Upright: Confident, fun, warmth, success, energy

Reversed: Inner child, manic depression, overly optimistic

18 The Moon 190315.jpg

A dog howls at the moon at night. Signifies imagination. On the timeline it represents the search for intellectual light in a dark world filled with unknown mysteries.

Upright: Fantasy, fright, anxiety, subconscious, intuition

Reversed: Peacefulness, repressed emotion, inner confusion

17 The Star 190315.jpg

One large star represents core essences, and seven smaller stars represent the centers of spiritual power in the human body. Signifies intuition, insight, and listening to your inner voice. On the timeline it represents the passage of the subconscious to the conscious.

Upright: Hope, faith, renewal

Reversed: Anguish, despair, withdrawal

16 Tower 190315.jpg

A tower, possibly a tower of burning knowledge, the prospect of a rise or a fall, and also the possibility of a lightning strike of revelation. Signifies danger, crisis, sudden change, destruction, higher learning, and liberation. On the timeline it represents abrupt change.

Upright: Swift change, upheaval, chaos, revelation, awakening

Reversed: Stagnation, fear of change, avoidance

15 The Devil 190315.jpg

Playing on a half alter, the devil only knows half the story. His tune often leads the naive down a dark path. Signifies being seduced by the material world and physical pleasures; lust for and an obsession with money and power. On the timeline it represents discretion in personal and business matters.

Upright: Shadows, attachment, addiction, sexuality

Reversed: Limiting beliefs, exploring dark thoughts, detachment

14 Temperance 190315.jpg

Liquid is poured from one glass to another showing the dilution of wine with water. A crowned lady stands on one foot, showing good balance and mastery. Can apply to liquor, food, criticism of others, and much more. Signifies the Cardinal Virtue, temperance. On the timeline it represents attainment and understanding.

Upright: Balance, moderation, patience, purpose

Reversed: Imbalance, excess, craving, self-healing, re-alignment

13 Death 190315.jpg

Also known as “The Card with No Name”. The reaper watches over a jungle of death to the left, and a field of rebirth to the right. Life is a jungle that royalty and scientists cannot control. Signifies an increased level of self-awareness. On the timeline it represents a change in thinking, from an old way to a new.

Upright: Endings, transformation, transition, self-awareness

Reversed: Resistance to change, regression, inner purging

The hanged man may be a traitor, or one who suspends himself in order to gain knowledge. Viewed inverted the hanged man is standing on one foot in perfect balance. Signifies the never ending struggle for balance and enlightenment. On the timeline it represents a sense of duty, bureaucracy, and suffering.

Upright: Pause, surrender, organization, new outlooks

Reversed: Resistance, stalling, red-tape, indecision

11 Strength 190315.jpg

The woman is calm and gentle, yet dominant over the lion. Signifies the Cardinal Virtue, fortitude. Also signifies enlightenment and spiritual powers over animal passions and earthly cravings. On the timeline it represents a control of earthly situations, staying level headed when confronted with pain or danger.

Upright: Courage, persuasion, influence, compassion

Reversed: Self-doubt, low energy, raw emotion

10 Wheel of Fortune 190315.jpg

Old decks and new view this as making a decision in a spiraling world of choices. Signifies that no matter how hard we try to see the future, some decisions are blind. On the timeline it represents an element of change in a person’s life.

Upright: Karma, destiny, a turning point

Reversed: Bad luck, resistance to change, dead ends

09 The Hermit 190315.jpg

Wastelands take many forms. The hermit can also waste away, or guide the unknowing. Signifies wasting away or the lamp of truth. On the timeline it represents losing your direction or navigating narrow paths.

Upright: Introspection, soul-searching, inner guidance

Reversed: Isolation, loneliness, withdrawal

08 Justice 190315.jpg

A judge is necessary to deliver justice, and it is typically impossible to deliver justice in a world of many opinions. Signifies the elusive balanced decision. On the timeline it represents reason and a verdict.

Upright: Fairness, truth, the law

Reversed: Unfairness, unaccountable, dishonest

07 The Chariot 190315.jpg

Celestial influences are used to inspire aggression, even though the seventh day should be a day of rest. Signifies controlling both positive and negative influences to work together. Could also signify that the best defense is a good offense. On the timeline it represents action.

Upright: Willpower, success, action

Reversed: Helplessness, opposition, lack of direction.

06 The Lovers 190315.jpg

Decisions about existing relationships, temptations of the heart, and a choice of potential partners is difficult. Signifies an irreversible choice. On the timeline it represents a change in lifestyle.

Upright: Harmony, relationships, alignment

Reversed: Self-love, disagreement, misalignment

05 The Hierophant 190315.jpg

The true pontiff connects the deity and humanity. The dance forms a bridge between heaven and hell. The sword and staff signify obedience and disobedience. On the timeline it represents spiritual and religious understanding.

Upright: Spiritual wisdom, religious beliefs, tradition

Reversed: Personal beliefs, freedom, challenging the status quo

Mars is symbolized by the ram throne. Sitting atop a stark, barren mountain, is a sign of sterile regulation, and unyielding power. Signifies the top of the secular hierarchy, the ultimate male ego. On the timeline it represents leadership.

Upright: Authority, establishment, structure

Reversed: Excessive control, lack of discipline, inflexibility

03 The Empress 190315.jpg

Embodies growth and fertility in the natural world. Her scepter signifies power over life, her starry crown signifies mastery over the seasons, and her thrown signifies dominion over the environment. On the timeline it represents springtime and development.

Upright: Femininity, nature, nurturing, abundance

Reversed: Creative block, dependence on others

Mysticism with a feminine understanding of life and death. The black and white signifies control of the positive and the negative, the light and the dark. On the timeline it represents the subconscious battle between forgiveness and spite.

Upright: Sacred knowledge, divine feminine, the subconscious mind, empathy

Reversed: Secrets, disconnected, withdrawal, malice

01 The Magician 190315.jpg

A master of the occult and a master of information the infinity represents the universe, like data, is never ending. The knives on the table behind him, like facts and figures, can be juggled, but must be handled with great care. Signifies bridging the gap between heaven and earth, between confusion and understanding. On the timeline it represents guidance to unlock hidden potential and talents.

Upright: Guidance, insight, potential, inspired action

Reversed: Bewilderment, over simplification, untapped talents, poor planning

The fellow in the card looks like me, Ozmioz, as a young lad.

Naive and clueless, intoxicated by bright lights and new opportunities, and approaching a precipice of no return, the inexperienced must learn quickly. The journey of life is filled with mysteries, and the path of life unknown. Signifies a fresh start and innocence. On the timeline it represents a new beginning.

Upright: Beginnings, spontaneity, a free spirit

Reversed: Hesitation, gullibility, recklessness, risk-taking