I&#39m confused...


This is only my second post and I would like to let you all know that I tend to be just a little long winded. I don't know how to make things short and simple.

I just bought myself the Sacred Circle tarot deck and book set. I am finding out that it was a bad choice to learn with. But its the right deck for me. That ever-elusive "perfect deck" I found on my first purchase. It's an inner feeling I get when I work with it.

I have decided the best way for me to learn is one card each day. Today for instance I'm working on card #5. Each day after I read what the book has to say about the card I go to Thirteen's Basic Tarot threads and read what all of you have to say about each card.

Now my problem... When I read about card #1 in the book I understood the meaning. Then I came on here and read what Thirteen had to say. All of you made it much clearer even though the discription of how the card looked was way off. So I thought to myself, "no problem... Thirteen is using a RW deck, she stated that at the beginning, and I have a completely different deck." My book also says that they have changed some of the names. My #1 card is not called the Magician, but The High Priest. Even with these differences the meaning the book gave me seemed to go along with the meaning from Thirteen's thread.

Then this morning I get to card #5. My deck calls this card The Druid. And I was like "Wow." This card looks just like Thirteen discribed The Magician. And as I read I realize that my #1 card, the High Priest, looks just like ALL OF YOU are discribing The Heirophant. And Thirteen even refers to this card as The High Priest, which is what my #1 card is called!!!

So now I'm confused!!! Which card is which?!?! Is my High Priest (card #1) the Magician or the Heirophant??? Is my Druid (card #5) the Heirophant or the Magician???

Learning things like this can be slow going for me, one step at a time. So this will have to be worked out before I can continue on. I'm also a very visual person so these two cards are now just really confusing me. I'm also high-strung... so if I sound like I'm panicing I am.

Thank you for any help you can give me. Sorry for babbling...

Dianne :)



When you're working with Tarot decks that have renumbered or renamed some cards, its important to learn with a reference book that's designed for that deck.

If not, you're going to run into the confusion that you're now experiencing. Thirteen's educational posts are top notch, but they may not necessarily coincide with the correspondences present in Sacred Circle.

For that reason, stay with the book that came with the deck. When you acquire a new deck, then take a look at other reference books.



i'm glad you are willing to share your confusion w/ us. we want to turn ppl on to tarot not lose ppl due to anxiety and confusion. first, i want to assure you that when i compare my laerning against the sacred circle i get confused, too and i consider myself an experienced tarot reader. imho, the sacred circle is a great deck but i wouldn't want to learn on it. there's just not enough standard correlations between it and the rider waite smith deck to avoid being confused.

i'd recommend you get a copy of the rider waite smith or one of the clones like the universal or mary hanson roberts or robin wood to use with thirteen's posts. i believe that learning the sacred circle separately will help you. you might be able to apply what you learn from the rws to the sacred circle one day but don't overwhelm yourself by trying to do that now when you are so fresh learning. i have to learn sacred circle as a different tarot system than what i learned on. there are correlations but not enough consistency to keep it from being confusing--not all tarot systems are created the same. SC is more of a theme deck and lives in a world of it's own making if that makes any sense. you can learn the basics from rws and use it's structure to learn other tarot systems.

the rws doesn't attract many but imo it's the best tool to get a sound general tarot education. to me rws is what a kindergartener would start with. read widely and explore symbolism if it interests you. practice doing readings using the book. someone in high school might go with the SC if there is enough progress and comfort with the basics. so don't worry. i think what you are feeling is totally normal under the circumstances. however, if you want to learn with the sacred circle, i wouldn't further confuse myself by looking places outside the SC for understanding that particular tarot. being a beginner is tough enough w/o anything else making it more complex! hang in there! you can do it!


Hey Dianne,

I'm really glad you're liking the tarot basics posts. Tarot Basics was made to clarify, not confuse, so do whatever you need to do to keep things simple--whether that means sticking with just the SC book (which I'd do if the SC so resonates with you that it's likely to be your only or single most important deck) or getting a cheap, little RW deck (which I would absolutely do if you see yourself as a reader likely to switch between decks) or, easiest of all, ignoring the numbers ;)

The numbers are artifical at best and of use for: (1) remembering the cards, (2) seeing a story or journey in them, (3) for more obscure and esoteric things like Qabbala. There's certainly been plenty of disagreements on numbering before now, most famously the 100 year old (at least!) on-going, long-term debate as to which card is #8 and which is #11, Justice or Strength. And the earliest tarot decks have no numbers.

Point is, the numbering makes no difference at all when it comes to readings. I almost never consider the numbers of the cards in a reading outside of maybe The Fool and The World, as they are alpha and omega.

So, easiest thing to do, switch Druid and High Priest. Ignore the numbers and focus on the meaning instead. That's what counts. If you get a card and it doesn't match the "Tarot basics" meaning, keep reading through TB till you find the one it corresponds to. As I recall, this is only a problem with some of the Major Arcana, not the minor. Watch out especially for the middle cards--like 11-15. I think that's where things get sticky with that deck. Otherwise, you should be fine. And yes, by the by, I would consider the Druid the Magician and the High Priest the Heirophant if I was going for an RW correlation.



While I Love the Look of the Sacred Circle Tarot Deck , they really have changed the majors quite a bit. The one thing that always bothered me was how majors #14, 15 , and 16 are just totally different cards from the traditional RW. I never noticed until now that #1 The magician , and #5 the hierophant Do seem to be switched in this deck also! The one Looks like the other. The book description makes it even more difficult , IMO , to tell which is "The hierophant' and which is The magician. I think the authors just decided to "be creative" and come up with a new major arcana!


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