Say It With Tarot

Everything you want to know about Tarot--especially for contemplation, self-empowerment, personal growth and creativity--from Tarot expert, author and deck co-creator Janet Boyer.

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Should Tarot Be in the Hands of the Masses? Part 1

In this episode of my Naked Tarot Podcast, I discusses a recent YouTube video from some punk who thinks that Tarot should NOT be accessible to the masses--because they'll "degrade" the cards, water down the meanings and "turn it into shit". 

Although the Rider-Waite-Smith Tarot and Thoth decks are replete with esoteric symbolism (Western Hermeticism, especially), the 78 cards--the underlying structure or "bones" of a Tarot deck--aren't shackled to those two traditions.

Symbols have been with us as long as we could make hand gestures or draw.

From myriad cultures and times, symbols are woven into the fabric of pop culture--songs, poems, fairy tales, paintings, comic books and movies. They are shortcuts to broader and deeper themes that can increase understanding, expand consciousness and facilitate communication.

Before the dawn of the internet, occult (i.e. secret) knowledge was protected by the few--the "special". Some argued that esoteric knowledge isn't for "just anyone". 

Interestingly, the Catholic church thought the same thing--not only resisting the translation of the Bible to make it accessible to the masses, but also burning possessors of the Good Book at the stake.

Why? Knowledge is power. Those in control want to retain power. They can't do this when "the masses" are awake and can access deeper, liberating truths for thsemselves

That's why.

A small but vocal contingent in social media act like Tarot fascists, going so far to say that the cards need to be under "the Tarot community's control". (One of the ludicrous assessments I address in my latest podcast). 

Listen in to my take on this controversy here.

Tomorrow, join Dax Carlisle and I live for Part 2 of this discussion on the Tarot Insider Show.

-- Janet



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Janet Boyer is the author of Back in Time Tarot (Hampton Roads), Tarot in Reverse (Schiffer Publishing) and Naked Tarot: Sassy, Stripped-Down Advice (Dodona Books). She's the co-creator (with her husband, artist Ron Boyer) of the Snowland Deck and Coffee Tarot, and authored both companion books to those decks. A Renaissance Soul, she is also an award-winning cook, mixed media artist, jewelry artisan and journal maker. Next to creating, her favorite thing to do is spend time with her beloved husband, son and 5 cats at her rural home in Pennsylvania. Visit her at


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