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Learn the secrets of tarot reading: How to memorise tarot cards

Tarot Cards from the Mythic Tarot Deck
Tarot Cards from the Mythic Tarot Deck

Imagine being able to give a tarot reading without having to look up your little tarot guidebook.  Stop looking and feeling like a complete tarot rookie with this guide to help you memorise the tarot cards!

Remembering the meaning for 78 cards sure is an intimidating task.  But it is entirely possible and I’m about to show you how to get started.

The 1st secret – It’s all in the deck

There are literally hundreds of tarot decks to choose from.  Some will look bland while other tarot decks will be wonderfully illustrated and sweep you off your feet with their beauty.  It’s cards from this last category that you should use to make remembering the cards and their stories easy.

The 2nd secret – Learn the major arcana first

The tarot deck is made up of two categories.  The major arcana and the minor arcana.  Cards from the major arcana are cards like Temperance, Justice and The Fool etc.  While cards from the minor arcana are cards like Five of Cups, Ace of Swords and Knight of Pentacles.

Pick out all the cards from the major arcana and learn these first.  They play an important role in tarot readings so by learning these first, you will be able to deliver meaning for a vital piece of the reading from memory.

The 3rd secret – My 7-step memorization technique

  1. Pick out 3 of the major arcana cards and study them individually.
  2. Look up your mini tarot guide and read what it has to say.
  3. Now think of an experience or time in your life that relates to this card.
  4. Think about how you felt about it.
  5. What advice would you give to someone in this same situation?
  6. What would make the situation worse?
  7. Look at the card again and you will have a full appreciation for the story behind this card and what it really means.

Now when the card appears in a reading you will not only know the story it tells but the emotions that go with it and how best to move forward.

This 7 step process is all you need to start remembering every tarot card.

The 4th secret – Learn the suits

Coins / Pentacles – What we have: Money, possessions, materials

Cups – What we feel: love, anger, happiness, sadness

Wands – What we do: actions, reasons, motivations

Swords – What we think: ideas, dreams, thoughts

Final piece of advice for remembering tarot cards

Use and trust your intuition.

Take it slowly. Don’t try to remember them all in a single night.  If you rush it, the lines will blur between each card and you’ll be back to looking up the meaning in your little tarot guidebook.


Tarot Deck & Guidebook Giveaway

Has this article helped you remember the cards?

Place a comment below and you’ll go into the draw to win these beautifully illustrated cards and guidebook by Juliet Sharman-Burke.  Entries close midnight May 18th, 2012 AEST.  Winner announced on FaceBook the following day.


  1. Rebecka

    Very nice to read, great tips! I have been wanting to learn tarot-reading for a very long time, but it all seemed/seems like a lot to keep in mind, soo it’s much appreciated to see something like this. 🙂

  2. Jessica

    I’ve tried so long to remember the tarot cards, countless notebooks with everything I’ve read about them, perhaps I was overcomplicating it, these tips are fab 😀

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