Newsletter of The Tarot School
ISSN: 1529-0565 
Vol. 3 #12 / December 1, 2011

 In this Issue:
- Welcome
- Tarot Tip: What Do Those Tools Mean?
- Tarot Card Showcase: Eight of Pentacles
- Upcoming Events
- Best Practices: A Tarot Reader's Toolbox
- Reader Feedback
- Featured Tarot Blog: It's On The Cards

Welcome to a new issue of Tarot Tips!
And a special welcome to our new readers.
When you go through the RWS deck, you will find that
many of the figures are holding, grasping or leaning on
something. The most referenced are the swords, wands,
cups and pentacles. Keeping in mind that the symbolism
on Waite's deck has Masonic and occult influences,
these tools have deeper esoteric significance.

This issue will call attention to other tool imagery
found in the deck. Some tools are of a more practical
use, such as the hammer shown on the Showcase card, the
Eight of Pentacles, while others indicate the role or
position of a tarot character.

The 'Best Practices' column has suggestions for a
Tarot Reader's Toolbox.  From altar supplies to
office supplies, a reader should be prepared. We also
received some feedback about the November issue to
share. Thanks to our lovely subscribers for your

And one more thing...
The holidays can be stressful, so make sure to set aside
some "me time" for yourself. Cozy up with a good
tarot book, play with your favorite decks, and plan
to feed your soul with some classes and a trip to the
2012 Readers Studio in the months ahead. In the
meantime, we wish you a very joyous holiday season!
Yours in the celebration of tarot,
Ruth Ann, Wald & Gina

Tarot Tips is here to help you with the practical side
of your Tarot journey. In order to take the greatest
advantage of this newsletter, please send us your
questions regarding any aspect of your tarot study
or practice and we'll do our best to answer them
in an upcoming issue.

Spread the experience of tarot - share this newsletter
with other Tarot Enthusiasts!

Tarot Tip
The largest detail on a specific card often grabs our
attention. More often than not, we start rattling off
what a card means, never being attentive to the smaller,
less well known details in the card, such as the lantern
held by the Hermit, or the bell around the neck of the
figure on crutches in the Five of Pentacles.

Try this reading for yourself or for another querent:

Shuffle the deck and choose 1 to 5 cards and lay them
out in a spread of your choice.
Without doing the usual interpretations of the cards,
choose one tool or object in the card that either has
never caught your attention before, or that you know
nothing about.
Proceed to do the reading based on the object you
have chosen. List all the possible meanings, messages
or significance of the tool that you can think of.
Do this for each card.
The tool /object will have a lot to tell you.
Here are a few interpretations of tools found in the
Rider-Waite-Smith deck:

Scales - Impartiality. Equilibrium. Weighing the pros
and cons. Measuring value.

Apron - The apron is the working apron of the ancient
stonemasons. Innocence. Purity. Distinction. Changes.

Scepter - Wielding creative power and authority.
Royal or spiritual power. Virility and fertility.

Lantern - Search for truth and virtue.

Chains - Connection to something. Servitude. Bonds.
Self-limitation. Association with a person or group.

Crutches - Dependence. Prop. Tau cross. Assistance to
those less fortunate.

Bell - Messages. Stay alert. Awareness. Warning.
Protection. Inner guidance.

Vase/Urn - Receptivity. Vessel. Storage. Containment.

Pole - Personal and divine power. Intention and focus.
Hoe - Agitation. Cultivation. Harvest.

Hammer - Symbol of masculine strength. Tool of divine
skill. Creative vigor. Creative intelligence. Productivity.

Setting Maul - Used to align and set stones.
Placement. Finalized. In Masonic lore, it was the final
weapon used to kill Hiram Abiff and is symbolic of a
violent blow. Patience and guidance.

Keys - Access, freedom and liberation. Keeping
secrets. Protection. Entry. Crossed keys represent
papal authority.


Tarot Card Showcase

In this section we will feature tidbits on a specific tarot card. 
While there are many systems and decks to choose from in 
the world of tarot, here we use the Universal Waite Tarot 
images and symbols.
Copyright 1992 U.S Games.

Astrological Attribution: Sun in Virgo
Qabalistic Attribution: Hod in Assiah
Esoteric Title: Lord of Prudence
The Eight of Pentacles shows a man crafting a pentacle.
The results of his precision detailing are seen on the
pentacles that have been finished and are displayed on
a panel next to him.

Waite's design demonstrates the theme of skill,
productivity and detailed work. The figure concentrates
on perfecting a certain technique, making each pentacle
more beautiful than the previous one. The goal is high
quality and perfection.

Traditionally, this card is associated with work and
industriousness. The Sun in Virgo aspect makes this a
card of hard work, the ability to work with many
details, and a flair for putting talents to the best
possible use.

Learning, school, training and continuing education may
be under consideration when this card appears in a
reading. This card indicates working to improve the
physical world.

In a reading this card can indicate a trophy, plaque or
award. Internal and external development may be also be
a major theme.

Positive Keywords: Technical skill, employment,
craftsmanship, apprenticeship, training, progress,
improvement, maintenance, productivity, and

Negative Keywords: Lacking, lazy, unreliable, cheap, of
poor quality, forgetful, overworked, under paid, lost
wages, untrained, and problems with work.

Tarot Affirmation: Prudence is demonstrated through my
ability to know how to do the right thing at the right time.

Upcoming Events:


Card Study Complete is a course that aligns itself as
closely as possible with the energy of the seasons.
With  this series we take a look at the Minor Arcana in
the form of the Suit of Pentacles, usually associated
with the upcoming season of Winter.

In these four classes, you'll find out that the Suit of
Pentacles is magnificent. It's a whole world all by
itself, and one quarter of all there is. And if you
don't already know it, you'll also begin to realize
that the Minor Arcana cards are anything but minor.

Pentacles is the suit of the body, symbol of earth, of
what is complete and solid and real, the gift of freedom
and connection to every individual person and thing.

This series will be full to overflowing with information,
with new perspectives, and with exploration. If you
treasure the useful, the provocative and the enjoyable,
join us!

11/17     The Symbol of the Pentacle
12/01      Ace - 5 of Pentacles
12/08      6 - 10 of Pentacles
12/15      The Court of Pentacles

4 Thursdays: November 17, December 1, 8 and 15.
(You can still join us and we'll send you the first class
recording right away!)
9-11 pm Eastern time 
Tuition: $80 for the series -- includes .mp3 recordings! 
Earns 8 Degree credits 
You'll receive the mp3 recordings even if you can't attend
the classes.

  • Sunday, January 29
  • Free Readers Studio Teleconference
    Open to all -- Join us for an informal get-together
    which is often surprising and always fun!
    1:00-2:30 pm Eastern time
    Sign up and get the call-in details at:

  • April 27-29, 2012
  • The Readers Studio
    LaGuardia Marriott Hotel
    East Elmhurst, New York
    Speakers include: James Wanless, James Wells,
    Shawn Nacol, Nancy Antenucci, Marcia McCord,
    Jude Alexander, Mary K. Greer,  Barbara Moore,
    Thalassa, James Ricklef, Courtney Weber, Frances Ktenas,
    Paris Finley, Chanah Liora Wizenberg, Ciro Marchetti,
    Sheilaa Hite and Mike Hernandez.

    Best Practices for Professional Readers

    I am a big believer in having the right tool for the
    job. I am often away from my home office and am a
    stickler about having supplies for my "portable"
    tarot office. These are the things I consider tools of
    the trade for a professional tarot reader:

    1.    Props. These would be items such as decorative
           candle holders, statues, etc.

    2.    Battery operated tea lights or candles. Make sure
           they are working and have fresh batteries.

    3.    A small flashlight or another light source.

    4.    Extra decks.

    5.    Crystals or crystal balls.

    6.    Altar or table clothes. Scarves.

    7.    Box of tissues.

    8.    Sign-up sheets or notebook and pens.

    9.    Timer. This is on most phones.

    10.  Voice Recorder. Make a CD or email readings to
           your client.

    There are some really great technology tools that are
    great for readers as well, such as:

  • Card Reader Apps - Allows you to accept payments
  •    on your phone or iPad.
  • Voice Recording or Phone Recording Apps
  • Business Card Readers and Scanners
  • Mobile Scanning Apps
  • Hour and Scheduling Apps

    I would suggest researching what would meet your needs
    best. There are so many tools for professional and
    business owners it will be easy to find the right
    solution for you.
    Questions arise when developing or transitioning
    to professional Tarot Reading status to earn
    income. These can range from "How can I make
    money with Tarot?" and "How do I get started?"
    to more complex technical and business questions.
    You may already be up and running and have
    questions about how to enhance or ramp up your
    business. We would love to hear from you. Send any
    questions, or interest in a future class on the
    Business of Tarot, to


    Join our international event as hundreds of tarot

    readers, teachers, authors and artists gather for three

    extraordinary days of tarot study and play.

    The 2011 Readers Studio ...the place to be for tarot! Click Here!

    April 27 - 29, 2012
    LaGuardia Marriott Hotel, New York

    for all the details!

    We received a couple of interesting emails in response to
    "Dealing with Naysayers and Non-Believers," the featured
    Tarot Tip in last month's issue. If you missed it, you can
    read it in the archives at 
    Marty of Dream Work Counseling wrote:

    I read your article on Tarot naysayers with great
    interest and agree with what you said.  In my own
    research I have found historical references to the ban
    on Tarot cards in Italy by the early churchmen in the
    13th & 14th centuries. As you know, this narrow view
    has plagued Tarotists since that time.

    What most people don't realize is that the ban on the
    Tarot was due to its association to gambling, not
    fortunetelling.  Card games were the gambling activity
    of the day at that time, and the church authorities
    wanted their "flock" in church and not playing card
    games. The result is that they became labeled (by the
    church authorities) as "tools of the devil."

    The interesting thing is that Tarot was not actually
    used as a divination tool until much later, in England.


    Robert Moyer had this to say:

    This is a wonderful and timely Newsletter.  We, our
    group at the PA Ren/Faire, had some interesting
    repercussions during one of the school days. It seems
    that two of the "chaperones" were very concerned about
    the "Tarot Readers" presence at the Ren/Faire.  (I'm
    sure that it seems obvious that the "chaperones" were
    from a Christian Academy in the area. I was so proud
    of the way the management of the Ren/Faire handled the
    The Mistress of the Merchants simply replied that
    "Tarot was apart of the Middle Ages and Elizabethan
    Times. Queen Elizabeth had advisors who studied the
    stars and the cards. So, it has every right to be here,
    as does the Bible or the Koran. My suggestion is to
    walk away from the temptation."

    I've shared this newsletter with my Readers and other
    friends. Thank you for the forum and the ability to share.
    Ed: And thank you both for sharing your insight
    and experience!

    Featured Tarot Blog
    We thought this blog was really cool. Dave Thornton
    shares his unique ideas, and brings a broader view to
    interpreting tarot. Check out the interesting card
    combinations and how Dave interprets certain 
    card pairings.

    Join our 3,645+ fans and join the fun!
    You never know what we'll say next...


    Do you have a question or comment on anything tarot?
    Suggestions for future topics?
    For information on tarot classes, courses,
    events and more, go to

    Copyright 2011 The Tarot School - All Rights Reserved
    Directors: Ruth Ann and Wald Amberstone