There are many schools of thought on
this subject, and like most things within the Tarot, there is no
right or wrong way to do something, just what feels right for you.
The customs about acquiring and keeping
your Tarot cards are numerous and to a greater extent, really are a
very personal thing. For instance, one superstition is that your
first deck should be a gift from someone; my first deck was a present
from a boyfriend way back in the 1970’s.
When a new deck is obtained, it is
worth spending time getting to know the cards and their meanings, of
course, but also to imbue your energy into them. Familiarise yourself
with the deck by shuffling them every day and carry them around with
you if possible. You can even sleep with them by your bed. It is best
(at this stage) not to let anyone else touch the cards until you are
ready to do readings. Remember they are your cards and are special to
Traditionally, cards are kept wrapped
in black or purple silk in a wooden box to preserve them from hostile
vibrations. I keep the decks I use most for readings wrapped in
purple silk and then placed into velvet bags. This is a much easier
way to transport them (especially as I often take 2 or 3 decks to any
psychic fairs I’m working at) as a velvet bag is much lighter than
a wooden box! My old original Rider Waite Smith deck still lives in a
beautiful wooden box, though.
I also keep several crystals with my
cards: clear quartz, rose quartz, citrine, and amethyst; large raw
chunks which I place around the deck when not in use. This is
personal to me, of course, but you might want to keep a small tumbled
crystal or two in your bag or box with the cards. I also place my
crystals around the deck in between readings at psychic fairs.
Another superstition is about letting
the person you are reading for touch the cards or not. Again, this
would be a very personal choice and basically there are three options
you might like to consider.
1) To not let the Querent (person you
are reading for) touch the cards at all, with you shuffling and
laying the cards.
2) To just let the Querent place their
hands (or just their left hand) on the deck, then you shuffle and lay
3) To let the Querent shuffle the cards
before you lay the cards.
I personally use the last option with
my face-to-face readings, but if I am doing an absent reading, I
shuffle and then let my pendulum choose the cards. (In view of the
current advice about cleansing our hands, I am now asking that all
face-to-face clients use some hand sanitiser first before touching
the cards, and I also cleanse mine, of course. At the end of the day,
I now also wipe each card over; a bit time consuming, but worth it.)
After a reading I always ‘cleanse’
my cards of any negativity. At psychic fairs where you don’t always
get much time between readings, I shuffle the cards quickly, ‘knock’
the pile of cards with my fingers and then pick them up and ‘blow’
the energies away. This can be done very quickly!
At the end of the day when I get home,
I cleanse the cards properly by passing them through sage smoke. I
then put all the Majors together and all four suits together, wrap
them in the silk and put them back in their bag. I then place them in
the middle of a circle made by my four large crystal chunks to rest
and recharge till they are next needed.
Over the years, you will of course
develop your own rituals for looking after your cards, and it really
is a personal thing and whatever feels and works best for you.