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Tarot Offers Optimism During Uncertain Times

Victor Moussa
Tarot art often take themes from the Chrisitan church and incoporates them into the cards.

Tarot cards have an interesting reputation. Their link to the occult can make them see taboo or sacrilegious. Some people connect them to hustlers or crooks, looking to make a quick buck. But those who believe in it, often see the cards as a way to reconnect with their feelings and aspirations.

Now as many of us stay locked inside our homes for an unknown amount of time, our collective future can feel more uncertain than it once did. Tarot practitioner Laurence Ross, believes these cards can provide a window into the possible and direction when we feel most directionless.

“I think that there’s an element of optimism and hope that underpin astrology and tarot that make navigating both the day-to-day and the longer-term plans a bit more in your control,” says Ross. “[Fortune telling] is not so much what’s going to happen, but I think astrology and tarot can allow the person who is getting a reading or reading their chart to think of the opportunities that seem closed off but aren’t really.”

Ross is the guest curator for an exhibit at Woodland Pattern Book Center, about historical and regional interpretations of the tarot. As you might have guessed, Woodland Pattern is closed because of the pandemic. But they’re currently working on a way to allow patrons to virtually interact with the center, including the tarot exhibit.

“I wanted to put together an exhibition that explored regional representations of tarot imagery, in other words, artists taking where they live or their own cultural backgrounds and using the traditional tarot imagery as a lens,” says Ross.         

Joy is a WUWM host and producer for Lake Effect.