Question: What is your balance between Tarot as a body of textbook knowledge and Tarot’s artwork and images as conveyors of meaning?
I personally distinguish between the time of study and the time of application, whether I am practicing for myself or others. Study involves engaging my intelligence and then reflecting to invite intuition and assimilation. Practice is when I am in a receptive state and I minimize how much language I generate so that mental activity doesn’t interrupt the feelings and overall understanding of the spread in the moment. The stimulus during practice could just as well be the images of the cards as it could be an intuitive application of knowledge.
The stimulus during practice could also be something beyond analytic understanding. That’s o.k. with me as long as it is harmonious with my own energies during practice. When I realized that possibility about practice, I also sought to establish spiritual boundaries.
I do read some authors who have written on the Thoth Tarot deck, and in doing so, I have learned vocabulary and concepts that have permanently altered my inner dialog. I am also aware that some Tarot practitioners study the cards in solitude purely by teachings from spirits. Either way, the quest for the enrichment of one’s spiritual knowledge bears fruit.