7 Tarot Card Myths and Misconceptions Debunked

Photo of author

By Anna Marikar

Are you afraid to read tarot cards? Well, you’re not alone. Many people don’t trust their intuition, and they’re not sure what to expect when they consult a tarot card reader. There are a lot of tarot card myths floating around, and let’s get in to some of them!

You’ve probably heard a few of the common misconceptions and myths around this ancient tool, whether you’re a card reader or not. But have you ever stopped to question if they’re all actually true? Read on to find out!

tarot card myths debunked

There are many stories circulating about tarot card reading, and many myths surrounding the concept of Tarot. 

Here, we will clear up some of the most common misconceptions regarding tarot card reading so if you want to learn more, here is a great place to start! 

A Brief History of Tarot

The origins of the tarot are shrouded in mystery, and it wasn’t until the 15th or 16th century that tarot cards began to be used for fortune telling. 

The cards are used to answer questions about yourself, your relationships, your career, or anything else you may be unsure of. It is not as simple as “Tarot cards predict the future” – Instead, Tarot cards use ancient symbolism from various cultures to tell a story which can help guide you in making decisions. 

Tarot cards help many people with their spiritual journey and transformations.

tarot cards

Tarot Myth 1 – The death card means that you will die

One of the most common tarot myths is that pulling the death card means that you will die and this is absolutely not true and it is not so simple as pulling ‘bad cards’ or ‘good cards’

Check our guide on the  meanings of all 78 Tarot cards guide for a brief over view of the meanings of each card, but we are here to reassure you that the death card can actually have a lot of positive meanings.

The ‘death’ tarot card rarely represents someone actually dying. This card is more symbollic and usually means that something is coming to an end. It could be a relationship, or even a hobby, or a career path.

The death card may indicate that you need to get ready to accept the loss of something you may cherish, but on the more positive side his card can also indicate a new beginning, and that you need to change direction in life.

This is sometimes strongly needed and the death of one thing forces you to look for something else which may be better suited for your needs or desires.

Changes are inevitable, although it can be scary but letting go of one thing can bring us something new. 

Tarot Myth 2- Tarot cards are evil

are tarot cards evil?

Reading tarot cards is a sacred spiritual skill and shouldn’t be considered evil. Just like a witch may be considered evil by some, but is actually not! Sometimes people judge what they do not understand, and don’t want to accept something that is different.

If you’re worried about personal religious beliefs and using tarot, it’s important to know that the cards aren’t evil and that tarot cannot attract the devil ‘demons’ or evil spirits.

It takes skill and knowledge to understand tarot cards and it’s important to focus on what the reading has shown you rather than the cards themselves. 

Tarot cards or divination cards are not capable of bringing bad energy, only people do that. So if you’re scared to use tarot cards, maybe you want to dig into why. That said – everyone should respect their own comfort zone, and tarot may not appeal to everyone.

Tarot cards aren’t meant to be a 100% accurate guide, they are guidance and a tool for you to explore your own issues.

Tarot Myth 3 – You must memorize all of the cards before reading

do you have to memorise all of the tarot meanings before reading?

It’s not necessary to memorize all of the tarot cards of major arcana and minor arcana, and all of their meanings before getting started with tarot reading. It can be a good way to learn, but it’s not necessary, and you will continue learning as you go.

Memorizing all of the tarot readings will make the process of performing readings a lot easier and faster. However, tarot card meanings change over time and with each individual reader, and you also need to use some intuition and develop skills as you go.

The specific meanings of the tarot cards are interdependent on one another. This means that if you know how a certain card relates to another, or which tarot card is opposite or similar to another, then it will become a lot easier to make sense of the current situation when reading for someone.

Lots of tarot decks come with a book or a guide that has their specific card meanings, so you can always use these for reference. There’s also useful information on each card and its meaning online. Check out our own guide to tarot meanings, amongst others.

Tarot Myth 4 – Tarot cards are used only for predicting the future

Tarot cards themselves will not be able to predict your future, and the accuracy of the results can depend more on the person doing the reading.

The person who is doing your tarot reading must have the ability to use their energy towards the cards and their meanings in order to view or guide you to your future. 

The cards are simply a tool to use in order to try and interpret and understand a future or present situation and as with any tool, if you do not know how to use it correctly then you have a strong chance of getting poor results.

The cards can be used in many ways and for different reasons. Tarot can be used as a tool to guide you spiritually, and bring clarity on your present situations, not just to attempt to predict your future.

Tarot Myth 5 – You should never read your own cards

It may not be the easiest to learn the proper way to read tarot for yourself, but you can still do this if you would like, and it is not dangerous.

This does require skill and the ability to not be biased. You need to rely on using energy instead of your personal emotions. Once you learn to do this you can successfully read your own tarot cards without a guide.

You can read tarot cards for yourself as long as you are precise and you are able decipher the meanings of your own cards.

Tarot cards contain intrinsic messages and profound meanings that do not necessarily have to be interpreted by someone else. Sometimes, a message or interpretation may resonate with you and your personal situation and if that helps you then it is all positive.

Tarot Myth 6 – You can’t buy your own tarot deck

Tarot is a spiritual practice that involves understanding yourself and the energy that you can harness and give off.

Many people think you need to wait to be gifted a tarot deck, but picking out your first tarot deck can sometimes be even more helpful than being gifted a deck.

It’s important that you feel like you connect with the cards that you will be using, and choosing your own deck is a simple way to make sure that you choose a deck that resonates with you and your energy. 

The tarot deck that you choose will have its own special meanings, imagery, symbols, and symbolism. All of these are things that help you in creating a stronger connection with your cards and bring out the best use in each of them. 

So there is no reason why you should not treat yourself to that tarot deck you had your eye on!

Or, if you simply can’t wait then print your own tarot deck using our free printable tarot cards.

Tarot Myth 7 – You shouldn’t buy used decks

This is not necessarily true. If you’re going to buy tarot cards decks that have been used already by other people, the most important thing you should do is cleanse them.

All objects can contain and hold energy, but tarot cards even more so! It’s important to cleanse any negative energy from the previous owners that could be on the cards before you use them, especially if you don’t know who this previous owner was.

So, to avoid picking up on any leftover negative energy, the user of a deck needs to cleanse them before they are used. A simple way to cleanse your tarot cards is to use selenite and sage to cleanse our decks but there are several other effective ways of cleansing your cards.

Debunking tarot card myths

Tarot is a fascinating form of divination, and there are a lot of misconceptions surrounding it. We hope this brief debunking helped to give you a better understanding on the idea of tarot.

There are some who speak out against it, who don’t understand tarot. Many of these various myths are spread by people who don’t understand the practice and those that want to scare others away from it.

The tarot has not only been around for centuries, but it continues to be used today by those who have learned how to use the power of the cards. Many people use tarot cards to let the energy guide them through their spiritual journey. As you learn more, you will start to use your positive energy to guide others along their journey.

Tarot Resources

Get yourself stocked up with a tarot guide book, card deck, and tarot aids.

Affilliate Links

Tarot Card Deck and Book

Tarot Card Journal

Tarot for Change – Using the Cards for Self-Care, Acceptance, and Growth

Tarot Card Coloring Pages

We hope you enjoyed this post on common tarot myths, please go ahead and share with friends.

Website | + posts

Anna is a Wales-based writer and graduate from SOAS University of London.
As the voice behind On Your Journey, she empowers women to embrace holistic well-being and spiritual growth through her expert insights into wellness and symbolism.
When she isn't writing thought-provoking articles, you'll find her busy crafting and raising her 4 children.

4 thoughts on “7 Tarot Card Myths and Misconceptions Debunked”

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.