Popularity of Tarot
New Age products seem to be gaining in popularity with every year that passes and tarot cards are no exception. Per this Specialty Retail article, consumers spend almost $230 billion per year on New Age products.
There are many unique varieties of tarot decks available today that either advertise a particular theme or contain unique art work. The standard tarot deck has 78 cards; 22 major arcana and 56 minor arcana. The 22 major arcana start at 0 for the Fool and end at 21 for the World. The minor arcana have 4 suits; pentacles, swords, wands and cups. The numbering of these are 1 – 10. The minor arcana also include a King, Queen, Knight and Page for each suit.
The best tarot deck to buy is a deck that has unique pictures on “all” the cards not just the major arcana. Some cheaper decks will display story-like pictures for the major arcana but for the minor arcana, they only show simple pictures of 10 cups, 9 wands, 8 swords etc. Without story-like pictures for each of these, it is harder to learn what the minor arcana cards mean. The picture below of 3 minor arcana cards is from a classic popular deck called Ryder Waite.
It is a challenge for new tarot card users to learn the meanings of 78 cards particularly because a single card has different meanings depending on the category such as; business, family, love or health. It takes a lot of time to learn how to apply the meanings to your individual questions.
4 Simple Tarot Card Spreads
This article is to suggest 4 simple spreads a new user can do that does not require memorizing all the possible card meanings.
1. Yes or No – Ask a question that only requires a yes or no answer.
Shuffle the deck making sure that the way you shuffle is allowing cards to be reversed and not maintaining them in all in an upight position. Cut the cards into three piles. Pass your hand over the three piles slowly and see which pile seems warm or energetic. Pick that pile up first and put the other two piles beneath that one.
Lay down the top 5 cards carefully and then turn each over left to right so you are not changing their upright or reversed position. Count how many cards are now upright and how many are reversed (pictures upside-down). If more cards are upright than reversed the answer is yes, if more cards are reversed (upside-down) the answer is no.
If you need to add a quick follow up question to your base question, ask your follow up question and turn over the very next card without reshuffling. Reversed is no, upright is yes.
2. Measure Time Needed – You can easily ask questions where the answer is number of months, number of weeks or number of days. An example is: How many months until I get a job offer?
In this simple tarot card spread, shuffle the cards and cut in half. Pick up the bottom half. Start turning over cards one by one. If a card is reversed, skip it. Otherwise, every time you turn over an upright major arcana, look at the top for the number 0 – 21. Minor arcana are also obvious numbers 1- 10. For court cards, King = 1, Queen = 2, Knight = 3 and Page = 4. Add up the numbers you get from the upright cards and stop accumulating the count when the next card is reversed.
3. Measuring Progress to a Goal – How close am I to achieving my goal or finishing a particular project?
In this simple tarot card spread, first shuffle only the Major Arcana. spread them out face down like a fan and pick one that you feel drawn to. Turn it over and read the number on the top which represents how far along you are where 0 is at the very beginning and 21 is at the end of your journey.
4. General Direction for Focusing – Shuffle only the minor arcana (the suit cards). Ask what needs to be done to solve a particular problem or what you need to concentrate on this month.
Turn over 7 cards and determine which suit is most prevalent among the cards you turned over.
If you got mostly Swords that means that to solve your current problem you need to apply thought, analysis, or perhaps get further education or training.
If you got mostly Wands, that means action is needed, so the time is now to take action about the problem. Also, you need to be more productive with your time and apply more effort to your goals.
Getting more Cups means to listen to your feelings on this subject. You are being told to follow your heart and do what will make you feel the best in this situation or do what will make your partner or associates feel best.
Getting more Pentacles means to consider finances. You need to invest in something to get a solution. That could be anything from buying tools, new clothes, buying a new house, getting a higher paying job, or it could also mean putting more money in the bank or investing your money in a better way. It means you need to consider the financial aspects of your current situation and what will provide financial security.