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Tarot Spreads


I'm going to try to make these descriptions informative for those of you who have been reading for a while, and also easy for the novice to understand. Please feel free to send me suggestions as to how to improve my presentation.
Let me begin by saying that when I read for someone who has never had a card reading before, I like to let them know what the cards can and can't do. To that end, I like to tell them that going to a Tarot Reader is like seeing a cosmic version of Dear Abby. That the cards don't TELL you what to do...rather they offer ADVICE on how best to proceed in a given situation.
One of the big questions that comes up when doing a Tarot spread is 'should I use a significator'. Right now some of you reading this are saying what the heck is that... Well the 'Significator' ia a card that represents the questioner. There are varied schools of thought on using this card and how to pick it as well. I personally don't use a significator, I like to have all the cards in the deck for their input in the reading. But that's me. I know a lot of people who fall on both sides of the fence with this and some who are happy sitting in the middle. Yep, they use it sometimes and not others. The variations on picking a significator can run from using the card that corresponds to the questioners Astrological sign, to having the person cut the deck, to looking at the cards and picking one that calls out to the questioner. So, if you want to use this option it is entirely up to you.

The Single Card

is actually a very useful Tarot tool for meditations, simple questions and daily practice. I usually pull a single card for myself daily to get a view of how my day will go and to get advice or inspiration. Yes you can read for yourself. The only problem you will usually find reading for your self is your own opinions. You may find yourself reading only the good parts of a card or spread or conversely reading to harshly so as to not give yourself false hopes. My best advice here is to look into your heart when you read and know that you are being true to yourself.

Single Card

You can also pull a single card to meditate on, sleep on, or just to contemplate. I often do single card pulls for individuals in groups, or at parties just to give people an idea of what Tarot can tell them.

The Three Card Spread

is good for short readings and to answer yes and no questions. You can use the number of upright and reversed cards as an indication of yes- upright, or no - reversed. the more cards in one or the other position indicates if it is yes or no.

3 Card Spread

OK, now you're about to ask if the cards are mostly up or mostly reversed. Well if 2 of the 3 are upright it is or can be interpreted as probably yes, and for 2 of the 3 to be reversed means probably no.
This spread can also be read for a quick question with one card giving information on the past, present and immediate future.

The Celtic Cross Spread

has got to be one of the most used and best known of the card spreads. This is like the standard card spread. I think just about every deck out there has a sheet with how to use this spread. Even though I was tempted to leave it out I decided to put it on the page so you could compare it to the Double Celtic Cross which appears just below.

The Celtic Cross

In this spread card #1 represents the Questioner in his or her present situation.
Card 2 Where you are at this point in time. Also this can be the reason you came to the cards for advice
Cards 3 Foundation of the situation, hopes and fears.
Cards 4 The recent past and how it affected you.
Cards 5 How others influence you and how they may work against you.
Cards 6 The not to distant future. Covers what may have an effect on your life.
Cards 7 represents the mental attitudes of the questioner and how things can affect destiny.
Cards 8 How the questioner is relats to the people in his or her life.
Cards 9 How the existing envrionment is affecting the questioner and his or her view of things.
Cards 10 a possible outcome or result from the information in the overall reading.

My favorite card spread to use for general readings as well as to answer many types of questions is a

Double Celtic Cross

spread which is pictured here


Double Celtic Cross

You can see that it has 21 cards as opposed to the 10 of a regular Celtic Cross Spread. The primary cards, 2-10 are 'supported' by the cards to their left which give the reader further information about the situation, event or what have you described by the primary card. I like this spread because it includes a timing and advice card, those being cards 20 & 21, and because of the support cards. Sometimes that little bit of extra information can be a big help.
As with the regular Celtic Cross card #1 represents the Questioner in his or her present situation.
Card 2 & 11 provide more information about the present situation. (Card 2 is read first followed by #11.)
Cards 3 & 12 foundation upon which this situation is based.
Cards 4 & 13 are things from the past which caused or had an effect on this situarion.
Cards 5 & 14 indicate how those around the questioner feel about him or her, or how they see the questioner in relation to themselves.
Cards 6 & 15 give you a peak at what lies in store for the questioner in the not to distant future. This is based on the reading at present and may change if you make any decisions based on the reading. Cards 7 & 16 represents the mental attitudes of the questioner and how they feel about their destiny.
Cards 8 & 17 show how the questioner is relating to the people in his or her life.
Cards 9 & 18 deal with desires and fears as the questioner knows them.
Cards 10 & 19 give a possible outcome or result from the information in the overall reading. Card 20 can give you a time-frame for the period the reading covers based on any of several different means of determining the time related to the cards.
And finally Card 21 which provides the questioner with advice as to how they might want to proceed after hearing the information the other cards have offered.

Next is a

Circle of the Year

spread pictured here

Circle of the year

This spread can be thrown to run from January through December as shown or it can be used Astrologically.
This one is fairly straight-forward and easy to read. Also you don't have to start with January you can use it for the year starting with what ever month you decide on. I also have pulled additional cards from the deck to get more information on a particular card in this or any reading.

I'm going to finish up with a spread I like to use when someone has a problem and is seeking guidance.I put it at the end because it's a little more complicated than some of the other spreads, not in that it uses a lot of cards but that it does require a little bit more knowledge of the cards to read as a stand alone being as how it was designed to go with a particular book. This spread is called not surprisingly...

The Spiritual Guidance Spread

Spiritual Guidance

This spread can be used with any deck and you can read your own versions of the card descriptions but you may just want to buy the book this one came from. I'm going to put the the spread descriptions up first then I'll tell you what the book is.
Spiritual Guidance
1 What concerns you most: what question you are asking
focus: the main focus of this card
desire: what needs this card would fulfill
2 The force or motivation behind this desire
focus: the main focus of the card
3 The underlying problem
anxiety: things about this reading that cause you to be upset
disappointment: things happening right now that can let you down
4 What you need to understand but may be unaware of
Direction: how best to proceed
shadowy: The spiritual effects of this card
everyday: the practical effects of this card
5 What you need to do to come to terms with the problem
best course of action: the advice or insight this card has to offer
6 The best way to use this advice
best course of action: the advice or insight this card has to offer
7 Guidance for the future
Direction,
shadowy: spiritual effects of the card
8 Ultimate achievement
focus: the main focus of this card
outcome: the probable results of acting upon this reading
This spread comes from the book 'Tarot Made Easy' by Nancy Garen. I recomend this book to beginers and seasoned readers alike as a refrence tool which can be used with just about any deck and card spread.
I hope these spreads give you a litte insight into the world of Tarot. There are many more spreads, likt the Horse-shoe, The Category spread, Court Card Spread, Lovers spreads... and on and on. I will be happy to answer any questions you have, if I can. You can EMail me at. Fraka

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fraka@ix.netcom.com on: Wednesday July 23, 1997