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Shadow Selves and Their Origin in Tarot

Shadow selves are a recurring idea that you see represented throughout tarot. Your shadow self is a part of you that can be picked up on in a reading that you might not show outwardly. It is made up of all of your hidden desires and personality traits that you hide from others. It is certainly a side of you you’d never want to be uncovered by others. Some people refer to their shadow self as the person they are when they’re angry, but it is so much deeper than that. It is not only your angry side. You might be a very religious man who goes to church and everyone sees as a pillar of the community. However, your desires revolve around sexual exploits and exploration. A common misconception is that your shadow self is inherently an evil part of yourself, which isn’t always true. Another example is a woman who marries a man that wants children. However, her shadow self doesn’t want children. She longs to travel and experience life free from obligation. Who you are outside of societal pressures might be a more accurate definition.

Often times, during a tarot reading, you will receive a reading geared towards your shadow self. You will need to be very comfortable with the person you’re exploring with whether you’re doing the reading or requesting the reading. There is a certain level of trust required to be able to accurately read tarot and trust a tarot reading with personal information about yourself that can further inform your reading. Be aware if you’re delving into a tarot reading and see hints of a shadow self (cards in reverse, cards that don’t seem to represent anyone in particular, cards that the person you’re reading for may not want to discuss), sometimes these can be very touchy subjects.

If you find yourself comfortable enough in tarot, you can even dive into shadow work, which is a whole new level of therapeutic tarot reading.

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