You may have used an oracle deck or heard of tarot cards, but did you realize you could perform a reading with a standard deck of playing cards for a friend or yourself? Anyone is welcome to try this method of divination, known as cartomancy.
In This Article...
Can you use a tarot deck to play cards?
With the exception of Minchiate, an extinct game that required 97 cards, a full Tarot deck, such as one for French Tarot, contains the full 78-card complement and can be used to play any game in the family. However, the Austrian-Hungarian Tarock and Italian Tarocco decks are smaller subsets (of 63, 54, 40, or even 36 cards) that are solely appropriate for regional games. The Latin suits of Cups, Coins, Clubs, and Swords are common in Italy and Spain, and the French suits of Hearts, Diamonds, Clubs, and Spades are used in France, Quebec, West Germany, and the majority of the English-speaking world. Regional tarot decks frequently include culture-specific suits. For example, the German suits of Hearts, Bells, Acorns, and Leaves are used throughout most of Germanic Europe. This pattern is still present in non-Tarot decks, such as those used in the German card game Skat (played with a deck of similar-value cards as in the French piquet deck used for Belote; players in most of western Germany use French suits while players in Bavaria and eastern Germany use German suits).
What does a deck of cards represent?
Each of the four major pillars of the Middle Ages’ economy is supposed to be symbolized by one of the card game’s suits: Hearts stood for the Church, Spades for the military, Clubs for agriculture, and Diamonds for the merchant class.
Infuse the cards with your energy
Spend some time with your tarot deck to imbue it with your energy before you begin plucking cards. The creator of Soul Cards, Kristine Fredheim, advises giving them a good shuffle while imagining or stating your name and birthdate. You might also think about sleeping with your cards under your pillow if you want to get really close to them.
What should you do initially while using a Tarot deck?
What to Do First:
- Get out your tarot deck.
- The cards are in your hand.
- “Knock or tap the pile of cards numerous times while holding them in your palm to disseminate your energy throughout the deck.
- Shuffle the cards completely.
- The cards are divided into three heaps, which are subsequently reassembled into one pile.
After a breakup
Draw one card for each of the following inquiries if you’ve recently broken up with someone and want to know more about the reason or determine whether you’ll get back together:
- How energetic is the partnership right now?
- What caused the divide in the first place?
- What do they really think of me right now?
- What do they intend for me right now?
- What kind of relationship will this be in the future?
- Which action is ideal for me to take right now?
When job searching
You can use this spread to explore what kind of career guidance the tarot can offer if you’re feeling uncertain about your career path or thinking about a new employment. Draw one card once more for each query.
- How active am I in my career right now?
- What challenge must I overcome?
- What is my calling in life?
- How can I follow this calling more closely?
- What should I do to prepare for the upcoming month?
When deciding between two options
This spread can highlight the benefits and drawbacks of each option, guiding you toward the best decision if you’re using tarot to pick between two possibilities (two job offers, two apartments, perhaps a love triangle???). Getting the deal Per card, ask one question.
- What is the fundamental cause of this fork in the road?
- What is the likely result of choosing option A?
- What is the most likely result for option B?
- What more should I take into account that was overlooked?
- What’s the best thing I can do right now?
When something is off with a friend
If you’re concerned about the state of a friendship or feel like something is wrong but are unable to pinpoint the cause, you might be interested in seeing what conclusions and solutions this spread offers. Ask one question per card, once more, I repeat.
- What makes this friendship so crucial?
- What led to this sudden change in tone, and why?
- What has changed, in my friend’s opinion?
- What can I do to make this matter more urgent?
- What is the future of this friendship?
- What should I do at this moment?
How should I maintain my Tarot deck?
While rearranging the cards in the tarot deck is a good approach to purify and clear their energy, there are some circumstances in which you might wish to perform a more specialized ritual. If you’re just getting started with tarot, cleaning your deck can be an excellent place to start.
You might want to clean your tarot deck for a variety of reasons, including:
- beginning with a fresh deck
- readings for other people
- You think you need to recharge.
- Your card readings seem a touch “odd” or “disconnected”
- Your deck hasn’t been used recently.
- Your deck has been handled by others
- You think you’ve been utilizing your deck a lot. A LOT, especially for books with strong emotional content
Why should you cleanse or clear your tarot deck?
Tarot deck cleansing helps keep the energy flowing between you and your deck. Consider it as a little spiritual hygiene to maintain a strong and clear connection. It’s not necessary, but if you have any of the aforementioned symptoms, try a few of the energetic cleansing techniques listed below and note which ones seem to work the best for you.
How often should you cleanse your tarot deck?
This is another way of stating USE YOUR INTUITION: there are no hard and fast laws. Don’t stress if you don’t believe it is necessary for your deck. Alternately, if you like to cleanse them once per week or once per month, that’s great. If it feels appropriate to you, you can even place your favorite crystal on the balcony each night.
If you frequently place crystals on your deck and store it on an altar while not in use, you might not feel the need to cleanse it frequently because this quick ritual will likely be sufficient to keep your deck feeling nice.
There are numerous ways to cleanse your cards, just as there are numerous reasons why you might desire to do so.
Different ways to cleanse your tarot deck
Use holy smoke. Light a dried rosemary, lavender, cedar, sage, or palo santo cleansing wand until it begins to smoke. Hold the smoke a safe distance below the deck while holding the burning herbs in one hand and the deck in the other so that the smoke drifts upward onto the cards. Turn the deck so that the smoke covers it from all angles. Next, safely put your deck to the ground and put out the fire.
On the deck, set a selenite stone (or a black tourmaline or a transparent quartz). It works well to leave it like way for an hour, but I prefer to leave it overnight.
Set them on display during a new moon. The New Moon is energy of a blank slate; you can purify the deck by setting it on a window sill on a new moon night. At this moment, you can also make a brand-new intention for your deck.
Place the cards in a salty dish. A strong and stabilizing cleaner is salt. My preferred choice for a thorough cleansing is this. Allow it to sit anywhere from one to eight hours in a dry area.
Unorderly shuffle. Spread the cards out on the ground, then shuffle them around like a child playing in dirt. This method’s freedom and randomization serve as an excellent reset.
the shuffle and sort. Set up the deck in rows of seven cards across, commencing with the Major Arcana numbers 0 to 22. (see photo above). Next, arrange the cards, Ace through King, one for each suit, as follows: Swords, Pentacles, Cups, and Wands. View the deck in this configuration, then mix everything up (like the chaotic!) and shuffle it thoroughly.
Who invented the tarot?
The first tarot decks were created in Italy in the 1430s by adding a fifth suit of 21 specially designed cards called trionfi (“triumphs”) and an odd card called il matto to an already existing four-suited pack (“the fool).