shorter Spreads and
Example Readings

There are many different tarot spreads, which vary by topic or focus and by the number of cards used. We choose a spread based on how the information it provides fits the issue or question we have. 

One-Card Spreads

One-card spreadscan be used when we want a quick idea about an issue or situation. Pulling one card can help us realize another aspect of our issue we may not have seen before, or give us a focus for our day.

 

Here’s an example: I’m in a stalemate with my partner about how to spend our COVID stimulus check; I want to spend it and he wants to save it.

 

I pull the 10 of Ability card, reversed:

  • Suit: Ability = embodiment, the physical world, the skills we develop

  • Number: 10 = excess (the energy is uncontrolled)

  • Image: a figure having a tantrum; reversed = immature energy is opening toward maturity

  • Keyword: Maturity

  • Meaning: endurance and stability; concerned with the long-term; being with others without dependency; taking part in traditions with those we love

 

The story of this reading might be that the best decision at this time would be saving the check – this will allow us to have a sense of financial stability.

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Three-Card Spreads

Short three-card spreads provide a snapshot of an issue. Past/present/future; mind/body/spirit; situation/obstacle/advice -- you can choose the position meanings that best fit your issue. Three-card spreads are good to start with if you're a more inexperienced tarot user. The cards can be laid out like this:

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Here’s an example of a three-card spread where I’m wondering whether I should look for a new career:

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  • Card #1 = 10 of Vitality

    • ​​Position Signficance: the past

    • Suit of Vitality = creativity and spirit

    • Number: 10 = excess (the energy is uncontrolled)

    • Image: a figure looking at a tiny figure through a magnifying glass

    • Keyword: Perfectionism

    • Card Meaning: burdened and overextended; feeling trapped; no time to relax; editing or rehearsing ourselves; refusing to say "no;" too much energy used to make things perfect

    • too much energy used to make things perfect

    • Possible story: For awhile now (card #1 position: the past) I have been having struggles (card #1 meaning, burdened and overextended) and difficulty with my energy level (Suit of Vitality, number 10) in my current job...

  • Card #2 = 5 of Inquiry reversed

    • ​Position Significance: the present

    • Suit of Inquiry = thinking and reason

    • Number: 5 = with effort (struggling to express the energy)

    • Image: a figure pointing at another figure who's drawing back; reversed = blaming energy is opening toward making amends 

    • Reversed Keyword: Amends

    • Reversed Card Meaning: beginning to move past defeat; reconciling; wanting the fighting to be over; letting it go; feeling sorrow after a failure; reconciliation

    • Possible story: ...and even though it might be challenging (Suit of Inquiry, number 5)looking for a new career right now (card #2 position: the present) might help me decide to move on (card #2 meaning, beginning to move past defeat)...

  • Card #3 = Affinity Feeler

    • ​Position Significance: the future

    • Suit of Affinity = emotions and connection

    • Feeler = inward-focused; inner knowing; nurturing energy

    • Image: a figure hugging a large heart to itself

    • Keyword: Empathy

    • Card Meaning: feeling compassion for ourselves and others we relate to; emotional authenticity; intuitive and sensitive; emotionally secure

    • Possible story: ...toward a future profession (card #3 position: the future) where I can feel (Suit of Affinity, Feeler) more emotionally secure and satisfied (card #3 meaning, emotional authenticity).

 

Summary: "For awhile now, I have been having struggles and difficulty with my energy level in my current job; and even though it might be challenging, looking for a new career right now might help me decide to move on toward a future profession where I can feel more emotionally secure and satisfied."