The Fool is the first card in the tarot deck, marked by the number zero. I have two decks, the classic Rider-Waite Tarot* and the Shadowscapes Tarot*, the second which was gifted to me by my beautiful friend Gabrielle.
The Fool is, for all intents and purposes, a carefree, unencumbered individual beginning his journey through the Major Arcana.
We don’t actually know whether he is at the start of his journey, we make this assumption because he looks happy, his clothes are clean, his sack is full and he seems to have an air of adventure and excitement in his expression.
Rider-Waite’s The Fool
We see more than the Fool himself does. We see, on the Rider-Waite card, his proximity to the edge of a fatal cliff. We see his companion, a little white dog, barking furiously at the Fool’s foolish behaviour, trying to warn him that forging forward without a plan will hurl him over the cliff.
Open your eyes! he barks. Watch your step!
Shadowscapes‘ The Fool
The representation of the Fool’s foolishness is depicted slightly differently here. This time it’s a woman who is acting foolishly, perched up on a statue of some kind (I’m sure there’s all sorts of symbolism there…). But instead of a little dog, some doves are frantically trying to keep her from falling by carrying ribbon to retain her.
*You can purchase these decks from Amazon by clicking the links above. Please note the links are unique to me as an Amazon Associate which means if you purchase them through my links I will earn a small commission.
Seems the Fool has many lessons to learn as he begins, and continues his trip.
What does it mean when the Fool card appears in a reading?
Obviously, as I sit here in my middle-aged, middle-class existence, I am not at the beginning of my life. I seem to be smack in the middle of it.
But that’s the beauty of the tarot cards – they will guide you through your life’s events at any given moment. People often look to the tarot for answers to questions they instinctively know already exist within them. The cards’ illustrations, rich with symbolism and imagery, serve as a guide to help you uncover those messages.
How to read the Fool card
The Fool card appears at a time when you might feel a need to begin something new. It could be a project, a role or responsibility, a cycle of some sort or even a fresh outlook or perspective.
It’s designed to give that that proverbial kick in the butt to begin something you may have put off: a healthier lifestyle, an exercise regime, enrolling in a course, looking for a different job, starting a family, moving house, leave a toxic relationship…
Look at it this way:
Say you want to drop white carbs from your diet. You shuffle your cards while you stuff your face with a delicious pastry when suddenly the Fool appears upright in your hand. In this case, consider the Fool a message that now is as good a time as any to start. As you finish the last of your pastry, tell yourself:
This was a delicious pastry. From today until next Tuesday, I will not eat pastry or any food containing white flour or sugar.
(I have done this and mostly succeeded. The trick is to start small, take baby steps: make it through a day or a week, or all weekdays, then reassess.)
Or, you could take the Fool’s message as a sign from the universe that today is exactly the right day to begin a job search, a new project, a side hustle, heck, write the first word for a book you always wanted to publish.
The possibilities of beginning new cycles are endless.
But be alert to the Fool’s foolishness. Watch out for the cliff. Heed to warnings or cautions around you. Pay attention, maybe plan a little, before you take leaps of faith. Open your eyes to learn the lessons you will encounter along the way.
But most importantly, begin your journey.
If Not Now, When? Tomorrow never comes.Claudette – Writer of Words etc
Here’s the youtube clip in my Tarot Snippet playlist if you’d like to see me in person and hear my voice. The clip is less than 2 minutes long. 😉
*Please note the links are unique to me as an Amazon Associate which means if you purchase them through my link I will earn a small commission.