A Pi Day Note . . .


Yes—that’s Pi spelled out in Tarot: 3.14159.

More precisely, it’s Empress [coin] Magician Emperor Magician Hierophant Hermit, in a recolored version of Claude Burdel’s 1751 Marseilles-type deck.

Since Pi (an irrational number) has now been calculated to more than 31 trillion digits, I could go on with this for a really long time. But actually, only a dozen or so digits are needed for most purposes.

In addition to being the ratio of the circumference of any circle and the diameter of that circle, Pi turns up in a whole array of important mathematical and scientific calculations. So it is indisputably one of the most fundamental things we “know” about the universe.

And it really does have a Tarot connection, of sorts.

Although here in America we celebrate Pi Day on March 14 (3.14), in many other parts of the world, Pi Day is July 22. That’s because in writing out dates we put the month before the day, while others put the day before the month—making their Pi Day 22/7.

Magically enough, 22 divided by 7 is a slightly more precise approximation of Pi than 3.14.

And of course the number 22 turns up in other interesting places as well. Beyond the fact (coincidental or otherwise) that the Tarot trumps and the letters of the Hebrew alphabet both count 22, there’s also the fascinating reality that a complete solar magnetic cycle of our Sun is 22 years, composed of two 11-year periods.

I’ve been intrigued by the numbers 22 and 11 ever since I first became involved with Tarot. More about that someday—but in order to keep the promise of brevity, I’ll just end by saying that if the Pi trumps shown above appeared together in a spread, I would notice how The Empress presides over a string of powerful men . . . .

As always, thanks for reading. And happy Pi Day!