Blouch: The basics of tarot, astrology and the Ouija board

Cat Blouch

Editor’s Note: All opinion section content reflects the views of the individual author only and does not represent a stance taken by The Collegian or its editorial board.

As elusive as the system of faith through which methods of divination originate is, the various methods of divination have a mysterious history. With Halloween around the corner, many people are becoming more in tune with their more intuitive selves and turning to mediums to uncover subconscious truths. 

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With the rise in popularity of such techniques, curiosity peaks; why do people believe in divination, what are the different methods and which one is best for you? Should you be considering dabbling in such practices? 

“All of the aforementioned instruments may be used to help answer questions and understand yourself on a deeper level should you walk into these practices with an open mind.”

The original iteration of the tarot cards can be traced back to the late 14th century, when artists in Europe created the first tarot cards, which were used originally as playing cards.

It wasn’t until about the late 16th century that divination with playing cards became popular, but it was simpler. Specific meanings were associated with each card in the 18th century. 

In spiritual practice, tarot cards can answer simple inquiries or more complex questions, such as predictions of a timeline for the year ahead or the nature of a person.

Tarot is used in practice because of its versatility in addition to its attention to detail. It can be applied to virtually any situation, and it allows for “clarifying cards,” which the user can continue to draw to further help them understand a reading. 

If you are curious about trying tarot cards, you can get free tarot readings online or buy a deck of your own. The Rider-Waite edition is the most popular tarot card deck used for divination in the United States, if you’re a sucker for tradition.  

I would recommend the Modern Witch Tarot Deck, as it has a simple design, nice vibrant colors and a fun, modern twist to the age-old practice. 

Astrology is another practice that has deep historical roots. While many believe it to be a method of categorizing people into 12 different personalities, this style of divination is  more complex. 

We often associate astrology with horoscopes, but that is just one piece of the puzzle. Based on the exact time and location of birth, an entire birth chart is developed — including your planet, sign and house. 

For example, my sun sign, which is traditionally the sign that is most recognizable, is in Leo, my moon sign is in Scorpio and my rising sign is in Capricorn. 

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Additionally, each sign has a corresponding “house” that it is associated with based on your birth chart, which adds even more complexity when analyzing certain aspects of an individual. 

Often the greatest misconception about astrology is that it is vague and typecasts people into basic categories based on stereotypes. In actuality, it is very precise; every birth chart is different because nobody else was born at the exact same time in the exact same place as anyone else. 

This is a popular mode of divination for that very reason. It helps individuals seek a deeper understanding of their true characteristics — those we display to others and subconscious habits. 

Another method of divination is the Ouija board. While there is much controversy surrounding its legitimacy, let me be clear: Whether or not you believe it is a legitimate instrument that allows one to connect with those who have passed, it is most certainly not a game. 

Many hold a belief in a deep, sinister character of the Ouija board as a tool that not only lets you connect with positive spirits but also spirits with bad intentions. 

The Ouija board works by acting as a medium between two planes of existence. It is a tool for channeling the energy of spirits into the board itself. If you’ve done your research and decide to use the Ouija board, here are some general rules of practice:

  • Choose one speaker to lead the session. 
  • Do not use the board alone. 
  • End every session. Make sure the planchette hovers over goodbye before members of the party take their hands off.
  • Do not use the board in your house. 

The ouija board is used as a tool of divination, as it allows for more specific questions, often with very deliberate answers. It is typically more versatile with the questions it allows for, though compared to the tarot, it focuses more on specific questions without painting a long-term picture. 

Whatever divination practice you decide to use, the most important thing to remember is that these are tools of people’s belief systems, and thus, you should garner respect accordingly. Keep in mind that none of these mediums are toys. 

That being said, all of the aforementioned instruments may be used to help answer questions and understand yourself on a deeper level should you walk into these practices with an open mind. 

Cat Blouch can be reached at letters@collegian.com or on Twitter @BlouchCat.