Step One for Mystics
You have this gorgeous new tarot deck, and you are eager to get divinin'! It will be tempting to start assigning literal, one-to-one meanings to each card, but don't worry, there will be a time for that. Why don't you enjoy this beautiful work of art first?
In order to learn the meanings of the cards, I suggest keeping a small journal (it can be minimal). Each day, take a card and meditate on it. Don't try to see literal meaning in the imagery (unless it is particularly powerful); rather, focus on your emotional, visceral response. As you allow yourself to embrace fully whatever intuition is stimulated by that card, allow some vocabulary to pop up. What words naturally arise while you are absorbed in the card? Write down these words in your journal, with a separate entry for each card.
I think you will get the most out of this exercise if you do no more than eight cards a day, but hey, if you can do more, go ahead and get down with your bad self.
Ultimately, you will choose one one or two keywords that you associate with each card; you decide whether or not they lean towards the prescribed meaning from the book, or your own initial intuition!
Check back again for Step One for folks who are excited about the structures and systems of tarot (our Geeks!)