How would you read this?
August 25, 2018 9:24 PM   Subscribe

Sometimes I start to think I'm seeing the same story in every tarot reading I do for myself, focusing on the same details and threads of narrative. Tarot-reader friends, how would you interpret this spread with regard to one's life and relationships? I'm happy to answer any follow-up questions that might add context. Cards inside.

I did a 7-card horseshoe spread:
1. past/what brought us to this point
2. the present
3. the future/what is yet to be
4. best course of action/best way to proceed
5. others in the situation
6. obstacles and fears
7. outcome
The cards:
1. Page of Pentacles
2. The Empress Reversed
3. The Fool Reversed
4. Six of Swords
5. Five of Pentacles Reversed
6. The Star Reversed
7. Four of Cups Reversed
Note: When I do tarot readings now, I often put iTunes on shuffle and keep track of the songs that come up for each, as sometimes it adds subtle layers of meaning to the reading. This is the reading with its soundtrack:
1. Page of Pentacles (Spanish Gold, "One Track Mind," and Phil Vassar, "Ultimate Love")
2. The Empress Reversed (Mitch Ryder & The Detroit Wheels, "Sock It to Me Baby")
3. The Fool Reversed (The Kinks, "Mr. Pleasant," and Morris Day, "Circle of Love")
4. Six of Swords (Terri Clark, "Something You Should've Said")
5. Five of Pentacles Reversed (Jo Dee Messina, "Nothing I Can Do")
6. The Star Reversed (Martina McBride, "Wearing White")
7. Four of Cups Reversed (The Refreshments, "Mekong")
Thanks in advance for the read and gut check!
posted by limeonaire to Religion & Philosophy (9 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
Well, it would help to know what question you had in mind when you laid out this spread?

Also, asking the same question or having the same feeling when laying a spread of tarot cards only serves to confuse the answer. The more you ask, the more confused the results. I have a hard time relating to Tarot cards as more than reflections of what I want to see, but it does help to just lay out one spread and reflect upon that, rather than confuse the question in your mind with several sets of readings.
posted by Armed Only With Hubris at 10:01 PM on August 25, 2018 [1 favorite]


Ah, good question. I think the general question I had in mind was what might happen next with regard to my life goals, marriage, and travel, and what should I be thinking about or doing next? I've been recovering from a broken ankle all summer and I was only just recently able to travel again, my father died last month, and it feels like I've been dealing with a lot of rockiness and difficulty on a lot of fronts for a while, to say the least, so yeah, that's kind of the background!
posted by limeonaire at 10:10 PM on August 25, 2018


And for sure, I try not to read multiple times in a row ever. I usually let at least a week or two—and sometimes up to a month—elapse between readings, and try to treat them as incremental guideposts, points at which I can step back, look at the narrative and the trajectory of things, and think and plan. But yeah, there is an overall narrative arc, it seems like, to a lot of my recent readings (which I've been tracking in my profile), so I'm curious whether I'm the only one who's seeing things in a certain light or if anyone might read them the way I am.
posted by limeonaire at 10:15 PM on August 25, 2018


I think your question was too broad. That makes it also confusing. I believe it’s also good to be really quiet and listening to your inner voice to find understanding and the music, would for me, perhaps also confuse things more.
posted by catspajammies at 10:29 PM on August 25, 2018 [2 favorites]


I hope this doesn’t offend anyone to say but I personally use tarot as a mini game to identify patterns in my life through messy, random data. For me, adding music to that mix would add too much random data to work with and so I prefer quiet, to keep it simpler. IMHO, coming up with similar interpretations given all those data points suggests to me that IS your inner voice coming through. Saying, “yep, nope still seeing it this way.”
posted by iamkimiam at 12:49 AM on August 26, 2018 [11 favorites]


In general, a friend likes to take the reverse cards to “shake them and see what shakes loose” in the picture. I love that so much. Hope it helps.

I see the last two cards as saying this is a good time to purge, empty out. Turns out you are grieving, plus you also just came through an experience that forced you to slow down and gave you time and space to take a look at things, so that all tracks. It’s time to grieve, reorganize and/or let go of things, attitudes, emotions, and finally relationships that no longer serve you. It’s a great opportunity, you are supported in this (self)work.

Here is a random tarot card interpretation from the internet that is not too terribly disimilar from my quick take. I agree with this interpretation that you could miss opportunity if you don’t do the work of grieving, letting go, and reorganizing that I suggested. I mean, that’s why we clean out our closets and psyche, right? To make everything tidy and to make way for new things. Anyway, here’s that internet interpretation...

“The Four of Cups reversed suggests that there is a good possibility that an offer will come your way but you must work hard to go out and get it. It is sitting right under your nose, so make sure you snap it up before you miss out! You may also be too focused on your own issues that you completely miss this opportunity or are unaware that it even exists. Keep your eyes and heart open to new possibilities, and release some of the focus on yourself to allow new opportunities to appear.
The Four of Cups reversed also reflects a time when you may be reluctant to open your heart to someone or to express your true feelings, instead withdrawing and isolating yourself from the other person. Be mindful of how this may be impacting those who are close to you and be considerate of their needs as well as your own.
On a more positive note, if you have been going through a period of stagnation, boredom or apathy, you will begin to feel restless with this state of being, and will want to break free from this rut. Put aside any negative thoughts or sulky behaviour. Embrace the opportunities that are already being offered to you. Reconnect with others and let them know how much you appreciate them.”
posted by jbenben at 7:54 AM on August 26, 2018 [2 favorites]


Just want to add that I’m not suggesting that you ditch relationships, rather, it’s a GREAT time to reorganize how you feel about other people in your life + refine any dynamics to be more mutually satisfying. Especially when a parent passes, the everyone relates to each ither tends to reorganize naturally without that person around anymore, this is A Thing. Similarly, the ways you relate to yourself will change, too.

I hope this helps.
posted by jbenben at 8:02 AM on August 26, 2018 [1 favorite]


I do a lot of personal spreads and when I get majority reversed cards like this, I see it as a big "ask again later" flag from the deck. Something's off with the question, either it's too broad as some suggest or maybe there are obstacles in your way that you aren't able to see or haven't fully acknowledged yet. I pulled the 4 of cups reversed a lot around a time when I'd assumed a powerless posture without recognizing what I had available to me, for example.

Another way I shake more meaning out of a spread is to look at astrological ties to the cards. Three of those cards (the Fool, the 6 of swords, and the Star) are associated with Air. The Empress specifically relates to Venus, or how you get what you want. The Fool is also related to Uranus, or disruption.

Air is what you're reading, texting, saying, hearing, thinking, watching — everything communication-related, also the internet! The fact that you have a reading playlist tells me you're tapped into some of that energy already.

There are no Fire cards in this spread; Fire cards are what you want if you want things to start happening. Instead you have a lot of active thinking and listening; predominant Air can begin to feel scattered. What seems unstable (5 of pentacles) about your situation right now? See if acknowledging that — speaking to the current reality and any related pain, spelling out (or writing down) what you want to change — helps to get that 6 of swords boat moving in a positive direction.
posted by saramour at 11:30 AM on August 26, 2018 [4 favorites]


Obviously/OF COURSE, you have your own wisdom and knowledge about what works best for you. For myself, I have a strong desire to simplify and streamline this process—the music is an added layer of complexity, and the reverse cards also seem unnecessarily complex.

If this were myself, I would narrow down my question, then read in silence + not sweat the reversals. Take everything as it comes. What does it bring up for you? What’s your instinct? Go with first impressions and don’t overthink it too much. Tarot is (IME) most useful as a mirror for your own mind, and you want that mirror to be uncluttered with procedural picky points. Again, if this were my reading, I would draw the cards in silence and not fuss with reversals. Tarot isn’t about technicality.
posted by witchen at 9:36 PM on August 26, 2018


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