More than just a Book of Shadows or Diary
A Tarot Journal is a book used to record your growth as a tarot reader. In essence it is where you will keep your readings and information about the cards.
This differs from a regular journal in that a tarot journal is designated for tarot only. This does not mean, however that you cannot incorporate your tarot journaling with your daily journal if you wish.
It also differs from a Book of Shadows (a witch's journal of spells, information, and recipes) in that the tarot journal only has tarot information in it and not information about other parts of your magickal practice. This can also get muddied if/when your magickal practice involves Kabbalah, numerology, astrology, and other occult information that is used in the tarot. I still recommend keeping the tarot journal separate from your BOS or, at least, in a separate part of your larger BOS - in its own section with its own easily accessable information. I found that keeping my BOS and tarot journal in the same place made the book too big for easy access and ease of use. Keeping them separate also meant that I didn't have the distraction of other areas of my practice and life tapping me on the shoulder and reminding me of things like how I need to stock up on my silver and red candles and to record this new astrological chart I found (welcome to the daily workings of my mind, everyone).
Over the last few years I've been asked how I keep all the information I read about tarot or if I record my tarot readings. When I mention my journal, this raises a lot of questions and intrigue so I thought I would share a little about tarot journaling with you all. At the end there are some resources from other tarot and journaling experts.
Why is it Important to Keep a Tarot Journal?
- learning their own personal connection with the cards
- making it easy to look back on previous readings and seeing how you've grown
- keeping lessons and information on the cards in one place
- recording your emotions and meditations on the cards in a private diary.
I've learned that you never stop learning
What Information Should go in Your Tarot Journal?
How you keep your journal is entirely up to you! You can keep a tarot journal in which you only record your daily tarot draws or the readings you get from a professional once a month or so. You can also keep a larger notebook filled with information about each card, spread, history, and all other aspects of tarot - more like a scholastic notebook.
My own journal goes back and forth between dry information that I've recorded from various resources (with note on where it came from so I can look back on it if need be) and juicy, heart-felt journaling on meditations, readings that I need to process, and my own spiritual growth.
Just as what information that goes in your journal is deeply personal, so is how you keep your journal.
I recommend that you write daily or weekly in your journal just as I recommend that you draw a card daily or get a reading at a regularly scheduled date so you can track your development. This will also keep you from forgetting to journal for months on end (yep, been there, done that. It's not a good feeling).
That all being said, don't make this a daunting task for yourself. If having a huge tome with every scrap of information you've learned about tarot intimidates you or keeping a daily dairy of card draws sounds tedious - please feel free to do what feels right for you!
I could kick myself for all the ideas I've had over the years like new spreads and meditations that I never wrote down and couldn't remember later.
For daily readings, I like to make a little 1 page collage or drawing about how I feel or what energies I get from the card(s) then I go on with the information to write in, any meditations, and later come back with any insights of synchronicities that occurred that day.
For example, in the tarot journal entry I did on The Moon after drawing it for the day I did a collage of tissue paper, construction paper, an image of luna moth wings, and info about the card and my feelings regarding it. I later that day noted that I had drawn this just as the Waxing Moon entered Cancer - a big time moon energy day and one that really synchronizes with the reading. So I not only wrote my feelings and some general info about the reading but also some info about the astrological phase of the moon and its connection with this tarot card.
15 Exercises for Your Tarot Journal From Little Red Tarot
The Four Queens Tarot Journaling Advice and Prompts
as well as a video of Tips for Journaling and Automatic Writing
OwlMoon's Tarot Journal Video
Tarot and Lunar Journal with Journeys of the Psyche
Poe Moonstone on her BOS/Tarot Journal I wanted to share this video because she is new-ish and I love her down-to-earth perspective on journaling and what not.
Tarot Journaling by Blair Mirth
Feeling Artsy or need some ideas to get those creative juices flowing? Check out these videos on journaling and art journaling:
15 Minute Art Journaling Ideas from JennieBellie
12 Things You Gotta Have for Art Journaling by Barb Owen (this vid is over an hour long, just a heads up, but super descriptive)
Artventure Journaling Rhomny's Realm is a great Youtube channel for witchy things and journaling so check out her other videos. This one is about tools to take out and about to journal away from home.