In honour of Doctor Who day on November 23, I’m launching a new series here: Doctor Who quotes that express or align with common interpretations of the cards of the major arcana: #22DoctorWhoTarotQuotes. Each week we’ll explore a major arcana card by pairing it with a quote from Doctor Who that plays on the essence of it.
How does one come up with such a project? I was thoroughly enjoying myself recently, reading through a list of the best quotes from Doctor Who, and musing about how they cover the great panoply of human experience. A bell (but not a cloister bell) rang somewhere deep in my subconscious as I thought about the other thing I love that covers the great panoply of human experience – tarot cards! I started reading the quotes more carefully, and realized that I could easily find quotes that matched the essence of each of the cards in the major arcana. I’ll admit that some fit better than others, but some fit so well they made me grin with delight.
We start, as any journey should, with card 0, The Fool. Of course, the Doctor themselves is the Fool, the hero on a quest, an adventurer exploring the universe. The Fool, perhaps not coincidentally my favourite card in the deck, is about making the leap and trusting the universe to catch you. When things go really wrong, the Doctor will be to save the human race yet again. Also, the Fool is unpredictable because they live outside of convention. They are the cosmic egg, the beginning, where the adventure starts. And so of course we start this adventure with the Fool.
It was Matt Smith’s Eleventh Doctor, one of the more overtly positive incarnations of the Doctor, who said, “I am and always will be the optimist. The hoper of far-flung hopes and the dreamer of improbable dreams.” I can’t think of a more Fool-ish set of sentiments than optimism, hope, and improbable dreams. What do you think of this quote as an interpretation of, or a riff off of, the Fool? Does it work for you? Why or why not?
Join me over the next 22 weeks as I merge the wisdom of two of my very favourite things: Doctor Who and tarot cards, in #22DoctorWhoTarotQuotes.