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Author Topic: Is it "unlucky" to buy your own deck?  (Read 1610 times)

Bear-craft

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Is it "unlucky" to buy your own deck?
« on: November 18, 2013, 08:22:13 pm »
A while back, someone told me that traditionally, people do not buy their own tarot cards; they receive them from somebody else. This was the first time I'd heard of this. He sort of implied that buying your own cards is "unlucky". While I'm not too concerned, since I got my first (and only) deck from my mom when I was 13, I was wondering if other folks had heard of this tradition and how many people actually follow it.

Valentine

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Re: Is it "unlucky" to buy your own deck?
« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2013, 08:29:09 pm »
Quote from: Bear-craft;129829
A while back, someone told me that traditionally, people do not buy their own tarot cards; they receive them from somebody else. This was the first time I'd heard of this. He sort of implied that buying your own cards is "unlucky". While I'm not too concerned, since I got my first (and only) deck from my mom when I was 13, I was wondering if other folks had heard of this tradition and how many people actually follow it.

 
It's a belief some people have.  It's not one that I subscribe to, and I've never had any problems with the deck I bought myself.  I wouldn't get too worried about it.

As far as I can see, holding to such a belief might make sense in terms of ensuring that a person doing divination is in connection with other supportive people of the sort who might make a gift of an oracle deck, and maybe has gotten training from a person; buying your own deck runs more risk of practicing divination without training and guidance, which would lead to ill fortune, I suppose.  In that case, the risk can be mitigated by just making sure to connect with people who know more than you do and have your back.
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Faemon

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Re: Is it "unlucky" to buy your own deck?
« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2013, 11:57:00 pm »
Quote from: Bear-craft;129829
A while back, someone told me that traditionally, people do not buy their own tarot cards; they receive them from somebody else.


...Which tradition is this?

I mean, I think that implies that everyone is a part of that very tradition. That would make sense if there were hierarchies and elders to judge when someone lower down the rung is "ready".

Otherwise, someone solitary or even closeted could wait for ever for the Universe to decide that they're ready and get a tarot deck in their hands. But then why wouldn't "ooh that's the deck for me here's $20" be part of that mechanism?

I bought my deck for myself, and we get along splendidly.
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Olivia

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Re: Is it "unlucky" to buy your own deck?
« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2013, 12:06:40 am »
Quote from: Bear-craft;129829
A while back, someone told me that traditionally, people do not buy their own tarot cards; they receive them from somebody else. This was the first time I'd heard of this. He sort of implied that buying your own cards is "unlucky". While I'm not too concerned, since I got my first (and only) deck from my mom when I was 13, I was wondering if other folks had heard of this tradition and how many people actually follow it.

 
I've never heard that before. I've always bought my own tarot cards.

Breeze

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Re: Is it "unlucky" to buy your own deck?
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2013, 12:15:43 am »
Quote from: Bear-craft;129829
A while back, someone told me that traditionally, people do not buy their own tarot cards; they receive them from somebody else. This was the first time I'd heard of this. He sort of implied that buying your own cards is "unlucky". While I'm not too concerned, since I got my first (and only) deck from my mom when I was 13, I was wondering if other folks had heard of this tradition and how many people actually follow it.


I remember reading this somewhere a really long time ago (can't remember the title, but I am almost certain it was a Llewellyn book).  When I wanted to get my first deck, I was a complete noob and took everything that I read as gospel (I was 12).  I gave my friend some money and asked him to buy me a deck so that it was a "gift" lol.  Ironically that's the only deck I've ever had trouble reading with.  Like everyone else, I bought the rest of mine myself and haven't had one problem.

Bear-craft

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Re: Is it "unlucky" to buy your own deck?
« Reply #5 on: November 19, 2013, 12:41:14 am »
Quote from: Breeze;129872
I gave my friend some money and asked him to buy me a deck so that it was a "gift" lol.  Ironically that's the only deck I've ever had trouble reading with.  Like everyone else, I bought the rest of mine myself and haven't had one problem.

 
Hah! I love that. (I mean, I don't love that you've had trouble with the deck, but... you get the idea!)

RandallS

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Re: Is it "unlucky" to buy your own deck?
« Reply #6 on: November 19, 2013, 08:16:52 am »
Quote from: Bear-craft;129829
A while back, someone told me that traditionally, people do not buy their own tarot cards; they receive them from somebody else. This was the first time I'd heard of this. He sort of implied that buying your own cards is "unlucky".

Some people believe this. (some people also believe this about knives) I never have. I've bought most of my own tarot decks (and knives) and can see that it has influenced my luck at all.
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Kylara

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Re: Is it "unlucky" to buy your own deck?
« Reply #7 on: November 19, 2013, 08:25:24 am »
Quote from: Bear-craft;129829
A while back, someone told me that traditionally, people do not buy their own tarot cards; they receive them from somebody else. This was the first time I'd heard of this. He sort of implied that buying your own cards is "unlucky". While I'm not too concerned, since I got my first (and only) deck from my mom when I was 13, I was wondering if other folks had heard of this tradition and how many people actually follow it.

 
When I was first learning (pushing 20 years ago now), this was an often quoted thing that appeared in a lot of 101 type books.  I bought my first deck, and was gifted one right after.  I like them both, but used the one I bought way more (the gifted one is one of those oversized decks, so cumbersome for reading, great for meditation).

I always thought this 'rule' was kind of like the 'don't read the cards for yourself'.  It is easy to read what you want to read, especially when you know all the particulars about a situation.  It is also easy to pick a deck because you think you should like it, even though it might not be the best deck for you.

However I think it is also not always a given that a gifted deck will work well for you, especially depending on how well the gifter knows you and how good they are at gifting (do they really pick what they think you would like, or do they pick something they would like that really isn't your thing at all).  

If I see a deck I really like, I don't have a problem buying it.  I also like to tell hubby which decks I want (like books, it is hard for him to get the wrong one, as he knows that they are pretty specific, so as long as I tell him which ones I like, he can get them or not get them as a gift)
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Scales

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Re: Is it "unlucky" to buy your own deck?
« Reply #8 on: November 19, 2013, 01:55:43 pm »
Quote from: Bear-craft;129829
{OP}

 
I read this just after being given my crystal ball, and the giver, a friend who grew up pagan, told me that it goes for all divination tools. All my tarot cards have been gifts, but though I have three sets, I connect with none and don't do tarot, so I never thought about it before then.

I wouldn't worry about it, though, it's not something that is possible for everyone and, like me, you might not get a deck you're drawn to even if there are people to gift it.

I also agree with Kylara
Quote from: Kylara
I always thought this 'rule' was kind of like the 'don't read the cards for yourself'. It is easy to read what you want to read, especially when you know all the particulars about a situation. It is also easy to pick a deck because you think you should like it, even though it might not be the best deck for you.

However I think it is also not always a given that a gifted deck will work well for you, especially depending on how well the gifter knows you and how good they are at gifting (do they really pick what they think you would like, or do they pick something they would like that really isn't your thing at all).

missgraceless

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Re: Is it "unlucky" to buy your own deck?
« Reply #9 on: November 19, 2013, 02:57:38 pm »
Quote from: Bear-craft;129829
A while back, someone told me that traditionally, people do not buy their own tarot cards; they receive them from somebody else. This was the first time I'd heard of this. He sort of implied that buying your own cards is "unlucky". While I'm not too concerned, since I got my first (and only) deck from my mom when I was 13, I was wondering if other folks had heard of this tradition and how many people actually follow it.

 
I bought my tarot deck from Borders when it was still open. I don't use them often, but we connect quite nicely. More often than not, if I'm doing a "this or that" spread, it'll give me the same answer multiple times, no matter how much I may not like said answer. "The cards don't lie" definitely applies to my deck.
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stephyjh

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Is it "unlucky" to buy your own deck?
« Reply #10 on: November 19, 2013, 03:00:25 pm »
Quote from: missgraceless;129925
I bought my tarot deck from Borders when it was still open. I don't use them often, but we connect quite nicely. More often than not, if I'm doing a "this or that" spread, it'll give me the same answer multiple times, no matter how much I may not like said answer. "The cards don't lie" definitely applies to my deck.

I got a couple of decks in their going out of business sale. Got some good deals, but didn't end up connecting. But I've found that whether I connect has nothing to do with who buys.
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Laveth

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Re: Is it "unlucky" to buy your own deck?
« Reply #11 on: November 19, 2013, 08:23:55 pm »
Quote from: Bear-craft;129829
A while back, someone told me that traditionally, people do not buy their own tarot cards; they receive them from somebody else. This was the first time I'd heard of this. He sort of implied that buying your own cards is "unlucky". While I'm not too concerned, since I got my first (and only) deck from my mom when I was 13, I was wondering if other folks had heard of this tradition and how many people actually follow it.

 
I've read something similar, numerous times from numerous sources (not particularly scholarly resources, for the record). But the actual bit I read was that someone starting out with Tarot traditionally steals or is gifted their first deck. Not every deck they ever own.

The logic behind that generally being the idea that the cards stolen or gifted would have already been "broken in" and already have a developed sense of their own identity and energy flow. Basically, easier to learn from because they're veteran and experienced cards.

It's a neat "tradition" but it's not one that I place a lot of weight in. I don't advocate stealing in the slightest (actually it rather p*sses me off when I see it). I've also never had any problems connecting with a deck that I have bought myself.

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Re: Is it "unlucky" to buy your own deck?
« Reply #12 on: November 20, 2013, 01:02:13 am »
Quote from: Laveth;129961
But the actual bit I read was that someone starting out with Tarot traditionally steals or is gifted their first deck. Not every deck they ever own.

 
[Bolding changed to focus on a different bit.]

That, honestly, sounds like someone was romanticizing about 'gypsy' stereotypes - the very stereotypes that are used as justification for the oppression of the Romani people, so romanticizing them is a particularly nasty exercise of privilege.

A more general reply: I didn't run into this idea until the very early '90s (which fits with what Kylara said), and by that time I'd been studying tarot for 20 years or close to it. I eventually got so exasperated with its pervasiveness, and curious, that I started a thread on TC, on what's now the archive board, asking about it, to see if I could pin down where it had come from. I didn't manage that (I think I've picked up more clues to it in this thread already!), but it was a really good convo on the subject.

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Bear-craft

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Re: Is it "unlucky" to buy your own deck?
« Reply #13 on: November 20, 2013, 02:47:15 am »
Quote from: SunflowerP;130006

A more general reply: I didn't run into this idea until the very early '90s (which fits with what Kylara said), and by that time I'd been studying tarot for 20 years or close to it. I eventually got so exasperated with its pervasiveness, and curious, that I started a thread on TC, on what's now the archive board, asking about it, to see if I could pin down where it had come from. I didn't manage that (I think I've picked up more clues to it in this thread already!), but it was a really good convo on the subject.

Sunflower

 
Ohh, thanks! I'll check it out.

Laveth

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Re: Is it "unlucky" to buy your own deck?
« Reply #14 on: November 21, 2013, 03:54:12 pm »
Quote from: SunflowerP;130006
[Bolding changed to focus on a different bit.]

That, honestly, sounds like someone was romanticizing about 'gypsy' stereotypes - the very stereotypes that are used as justification for the oppression of the Romani people, so romanticizing them is a particularly nasty exercise of privilege.

A more general reply: I didn't run into this idea until the very early '90s (which fits with what Kylara said), and by that time I'd been studying tarot for 20 years or close to it. I eventually got so exasperated with its pervasiveness, and curious, that I started a thread on TC, on what's now the archive board, asking about it, to see if I could pin down where it had come from. I didn't manage that (I think I've picked up more clues to it in this thread already!), but it was a really good convo on the subject.

Sunflower

 
It could well be a romanticized idea. Like I said, not exactly scholarly resources. :) Going to investigate the other thread now... hehe

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