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Can Buddhists Use Tarot Cards: Key Beliefs Explained

In the diverse world of spiritual practices, questions often arise about the compatibility of different belief systems and tools. One such question is whether Buddhists can use tarot cards.

This article delves into the intersection of Buddhism, a philosophy and spiritual practice rooted in the teachings of Siddhartha Gautama, and the use of tarot cards, a tool often associated with divination and self-reflection.

Lets talk about:
๐ŸŒ• Understanding the Core of Buddhism
๐ŸŒ” The Nature of Tarot Cards
๐ŸŒ“ Is Tarot Forbidden In Buddhism
๐ŸŒ’ The Compatibility of Buddhism and Tarot
๐ŸŒ‘ Integrating Tarot Within a Buddhist Practice

Understanding the Core of Buddhism

Buddhism, at its heart, is a path of enlightenment that emphasizes understanding the nature of reality, reducing suffering, and achieving Nirvana. Central to Buddhism are the concepts of mindfulness, ethical conduct, and the development of wisdom and compassion. It’s a practice that encourages self-awareness and introspection.

The Nature of Tarot Cards

Tarot cards are a set of symbolic images used for introspection, guidance, and, in some practices, divination. They serve as a mirror to the subconscious, helping users to tap into their intuition and consider different perspectives on their life situations. Tarot readings are often about personal interpretation and reflection.

Can Buddhist Use Tarot Cards?

Buddhists can use tarot cards if they view them as tools for mindfulness and self-reflection, aligning with their personal interpretation of Buddhist teachings, while ensuring they avoid superstition and attachment to specific outcomes.

However, there are a few other things to consider below…

Philosophical Overlap

  • Mindfulness and Self-Reflection: Both Buddhism and tarot emphasize introspection and self-awareness. Tarot readings can encourage a deep examination of one’s thoughts, feelings, and actions, aligning well with the Buddhist practice of mindfulness.
  • Ethical Considerations: Buddhismโ€™s focus on ethical living and compassion can inform how one approaches tarot readings, using them as a tool for positive personal growth and understanding, rather than fortune-telling or predicting the future.

Potential Conflicts

  • Superstition and Attachment: Some Buddhists might view tarot as conflicting with the teachings on avoiding superstition and attachment to particular outcomes or beliefs. Buddhism teaches the impermanence of all things and warns against clinging to specific ideas or desires, which can sometimes be a challenge when engaging with tarot.

Is Tarot Forbidden In Buddhism

In Buddhism, there isn’t a universal stance that explicitly forbids the use of tarot cards. Buddhism, known for its diverse schools of thought and practices, generally does not have a centralized authority that enforces strict dogmas or rules applicable to all practitioners.

The acceptance of practices like tarot reading can vary among different Buddhist communities and individuals.

Buddhism emphasizes understanding the nature of reality, mindfulness, ethical living, and the reduction of suffering. It encourages adherents to avoid attachment and superstition, focusing instead on personal growth, compassion, and enlightenment. Whether tarot is acceptable within a Buddhist practice largely depends on how it is used and interpreted:

Integrating Tarot Within a Buddhist Practice

Mindful Approach

  • For Buddhists interested in tarot, using the cards with a focus on mindfulness and self-exploration can be a harmonious integration. This involves approaching tarot readings as a tool for gaining insight into current life challenges, emotional states, or mental patterns, rather than seeking definitive answers or predictions about the future.

Ethical and Compassionate Use

  • Using tarot ethically means focusing on personal growth, understanding, and developing compassion. Itโ€™s about using the insights gained from the cards to foster kindness and empathy towards oneself and others, in line with Buddhist teachings.

Respect for Individual Beliefs

  • It’s important to acknowledge and respect the diversity within Buddhist beliefs and practices. Individual Buddhists may have different views on the compatibility of tarot with their spiritual path, and these views should be respected.


In conclusion, Buddhists can use tarot cards if they find them compatible with their spiritual practice and personal beliefs.

The key is to approach tarot with mindfulness, using it as a tool for introspection and self-awareness, and aligning its use with the core Buddhist principles of compassion, ethical conduct, and the pursuit of wisdom.

As with any spiritual practice, the integration of tarot into one’s journey is a personal choice and can be a meaningful complement to Buddhist teachings for those who choose to explore it.