I’ve been working on a post to fully describe my personal spread that I use for tarot readings, but it isn’t quite finished. I’ve decided to put the cart before the horse and post this reading for a good friend, and when I finish the post on my tarot spread, I will insert a link.
The tarot deck I used is The Mystic Faerie deck.
Most of the information for the reading was from my own knowledge of tarot, the Mystic Faerie Tarot book by Barbara Moore; Reading the Tarot by Leo Louis Martello; and Tarot Made Easy by Nancy Garen (one of my all-time favorite tarot books).
If I were sitting in a room with X, assuming I didn’t hurt her with an overenthusiastic hug, I would have had her hold the cards for a bit while thinking of her question. This may sound a bit “cheesy” to non-tarot readers, but I have seen those 78 cards give remarkably accurate readings, so even tho I might not understand exactly how it works, I know it does. The cards need to feel her vibrations, to get her imprint, not mine. (This is why people “clean” or “cleanse” their deck. When I read cards in clubs on the Lower East Side of New York, I used one deck — and used another for myself and people I knew.)
I would have X shuffle then cut the cards with her non-dominant hand. (Your “dominant” hand is the one you write with. If X is right handed, I’d have her cut with her left hand.) Then I would deal the first 27 (twenty-seven) cards off the top of the deck, in order, placing the top card on the bottom of the new pile, the second card on top of that, and so on. I’d lay the remaining cards to the side, or back in their bag. (When reading for people I don’t know, I would keep them in a separate bag until I could cleanse them. I’ve known X for decades, and I know she is an amazing person without any negativity — although if she had some, I would understand! — so while I wouldn’t mind putting the rest of the cards in their usual bag, I would still cleansebthem so they would have my question in mind and no last words for her reading.
Unfortunately, X and I do not live close enough, so I spent more time with the cards, imagining her surrounded by a peaceful white light, and concentrating on her question. To put it simply, her body has turned on her but her genius, her brain and emotions, are fully aware of what is happening. She’d like to know if there is an end in sight, and if she can go back to the work was doing.
As I said, I’ve used my own spread which utilizes 27 cards in three rows of three.
From left to right is: Past (A); Present (B); Future (C).
From top to bottom is: the Outer World, which includes work / school (1); Inner (2); and Personal which includes family / close friends / romantic relationships (3).
I’ll be posting the cards in order, with their basic meanings, below. Then I will write out how I read the cards, as I don’t read them in order. It’s hard to describe (and draw pictures of, hence why I haven’t posted the blog about my spread yet), but after looking at all of the cards, I start in the middle (B2), at the Querent / the Questioner / the person having the reading done.
Then I go back to B1, the Past.
Depending on the reading and the Question, I either go up to A1 then A2, or I go down to B1 then B2.
A3 then C3, or vice-versa, followed by the Outcome (B3).
You may be wondering why I would deal 27 cards into 9 piles of 3, only to turn up the top card. This isn’t exactly true: sometimes a card can be confusing. It doesn’t seem to fit, even when included in the overall reading. With my spread there are not one, but two cards to help clear up the confusion. I’ll have the person I’m reading for choose which of the two should be flipped first, but as s/he had dealt the cards, it is usually the second card that answers the question. However, I usually flip both if there is some confusion.
My friends question had to do mostly with health, but also about her career. Illness has forced this once brilliant [fill in her career] to spend life in agonising pain. While her mind is still able, her physical body is not.
Here are the cards, with photo and basic meaning, in the order I read them. I have removed identifying information at her request:
I couldn’t get a good picture of the entire spread, so here are the individual cards (i’ll fix the size of the photos; I just wanted this done) :
The Priestess or, more commonly, The High Priestess, indicates subconscious knowledge, intuition, seeing both sides of the story (and possibly choosing one). Help will come when you need it.
The Court Cards — what would be Jack, Queen, King, are, in the Tarot: Page (a young child); Knight (one in their mid-teens to early 20’s); Queen (a mature woman); and King (a mature man). Therefore, the Queen is thought to represent someone. As she is in the Past position, but not in the family row, I’d say this refers to a female teacher who may have made an impact on you — maybe helped lead you to your career field. Or she can be a boss who made you work harder to achieve your goals. The Pentacles do represent money, career, etc,
The Hermit wants you to collect everything you know and spend time with it, deciding what is possible and what is not, deciding what you can do and discarding the rest. The Hermit is someone who lives alone in his thoughts, so there is also a warning not to close yourself off from others.
The Emperor indicates you will achieve most but not all of your desires. The Emperor indicates a very strong male or masculine person. It also represents Aries (which is why I love him — I’m an Aries!).
* C2 4 of Cups
The Four (4) of Cups indicates your desire for a job or a legitimate source of income. Try to take your mind off of the problems at hand. Though you will be left emotionally “wanting”, this is the only way and, when you least expect it, an opportunity will appear.
* C3 Knave (Page) of Swords
The Page (Knave) or Swords is often thought to represent a young man, but can also refer to unexpected developments. In Tarot Made Easy, the Outcome is said to be, “you will find what was sought after, successful conclusions or agreements will be reached, and all will end well.” As this is in the future position for close relationships, it is very auspicious.
* A3 4 of Pentacles
The 4 of Pentacles means it is time to sit down and come up with a success plan. The fact that it is in the future position, and the position of work and outside projects, indicates that this is a plan that, if well-thought out, has a good chance of succeeding.
Finally, the 3 of Swords. Swords are the last stages of effort before the final result. The focus is on disappointment and loss followed by rebuilding and renewing.
The High Priestess represents you: able to see both sides of anything, the good and the bad, but so much more.
The Hanged Fae in your past indicates some sort of sacrifice; I’m assuming that it is referring to giving up your career due to your health.
The Queen of Pentacles in the Past would indicate a female or feminine role model. Had she been in the bottom (C) row, I would’ve thought it represented your mother. As the Pentacles are often thought to be the suit related to money and material items, I would think this is a possible past teacher or boss or mentor.
The Hermit is one of my favorite cards. Since this indicates the Present, I’d say he’s referring to you cutting ties from your career due to your health. The Hermit is warming you not to cut yourself off from others. While you do need time to think and figure out what is (physically) possible, going iit alone is not your best option. Due to it’s placement, in the Present, it is telling you that you need to make those decisions and then share them.
The Emperor is in the Past position, but someone close to you. I’m going with your father on this one. Even if he gave you all of his attention, it wouldn’t have been enough as you put him up on a high pestal and nobody, not even your father, could’ve met your high expectations.
I know you feel like you’ve been sitting around, but you have to take care of you first. The Four of Cups in the Present position indicates that your time will come when you least expect it.
The Page of Swords is a very good card in your situation. I know how lonely it can be when your body has turned on you; when you learn not to make plans because you will most likely have to cancel them. But this card indicates someone who will be understanding of your situation and, knowing what an amazing find you are, is willing to wait and work around your health.
Swords do indicate struggle, obstacles, and hardship, but you have the inner strength to overcome this.
Additionally, the majority of your cards are Major Arcana or Pentacles. The Major Arcana indicate the big life events; the things to “pay attention to”. Pentacles represent finances, security — the original meaning had to do with “working the land” as Pentacles represent the Earth.
The 4 of Pentacles fits in nicely with your final card, the Three of Swords. The first card indicates sitting down (or lying down) and coming up with a plan. It doesn’t have to be all logical, as long as some of it is. For example, I have this fantasy of showing up on your doorstep with bags filled with your favorite fruits and juices and then us getting Mani / pedi’s together. Aw for how realistic that is, well… We’ll see. The Three of Swords give credence to your disappointment at the state of your health. It is a horrible thing to have one’s body turn on them while leaving the mind intact. So it is with you. You have very right to be bitter and angry, but you’re not. I’d say take some time to mull over the unfairness of the situation and then, with your plan in hand (metaphorically speaking, of course), get to work. Baby steps, as they say. Start a notebook (paper or on your phone or computer), and begin writing notes for your professional field. All fields have publications; this can be how you make your mark. That’s just one idea, tho, there are millions and you need to decide what works for you.
Lo siento mucho for how long this has taken. When I show up on your doorstep with cool, wet towels for your for head, I will bring this deck and do a reading in person. It goes much faster!
Let me know you read this & I’ll take it down or answer more specific questions. I still have all 27 set aside.