The tarot is a means of communication with the world. It allows readers to interpret signs from their surroundings, gather information, and use this information to make inferences about a…
The tarot is a means of communication with the world. It allows readers to interpret signs from their surroundings, gather information, and use this information to make inferences about a posed question. Its origins can be found in mid-15th century Europe as playing cards with four suits commonly used for gambling. Several hundred years later during the 18th century, it began to be used as a tool for divination; the Major Arcana, a set of 22 trump cards representing various archetypes, evolved as a supplement to a new tarot that has become associated with mysticism. The tarot’s foundation is based on archetypes that build society. It can serve as a visual lens to understand the experiences, thoughts, and actions of a person posing a question, allowing the reader to offer a solution by understanding and interpreting the specific visual language of a deck.
Hinduism is one of the oldest religions in the world and one of the most practiced today. It is full of fantastical myths and heroic legends, as well as undercurrents of feminism contrasted with misogyny and patriarchy. Hindu myths are contradictory as stories have evolved over time and have been retold with millions of differing perspectives.
In my thesis, I portrayed the 22 archetypes of the Major Arcana of the tarot through the lens of Hindu mythology as well as the broader pan-Indian culture. I include ancient stories and references to modern social issues. I visually communicated the connections between characters of Hindu mythology and the archetypes of the tarot with 22 watercolor paintings. This project was an opportunity to explore both the tarot through Hinduism, vice-versa. It allowed for the development of a deeper connection with spirituality and religion, along with a greater understanding of visual communication.