Preparation and procedure for a Tarot reading Print
Tarot Articles - Tarot articles
One of the most important steps in the procedure of reading the Tarot is the preparation you need to make before you sit down to read the cards. Unfortunately this step is neglected by many aspiring readers but it should never be ommited or overlooked.  

Practically speaking, you may wonder about the space or room or table or colour of cloth you need to use. There are many styles of decoration for your space: you can choose something simple or more dramatic, it's a matter of taste. You may gather some personal objects that are filled with your energy, like crystals, jewels etc. Some flowers, candles or burning incense are also a good idea. As for the cloth, you may want to go classic with this and choose a piece of light blue or purple silk to lay your cards on. All of these are personal choices and absolutely optional. What you basically really need is an empty surface and silence. 

What is really important and necessary is your mental preparation for reading the cards. Sit down calmly and relax. Close your eyes and take some deep breaths. Try to get rid of all thoughts and troubles. It is very important to remember that when you're too anxious or worried or sad, you can't read the cards right. The Tarot cards will function as a mirror and only show you the worst of your fears. Try to lift your spirit off all problems for a while. Disconnect the telephone and turn of the television. Try to empty your mind.

After you have relaxed and emptied your head, you can start focusing on your question. Try to avoid very definite or yes-or-no questions like "Will I get the job?". A question like "How did the job interview go?" can prove a lot more useful. The cards will answer with a yes or no anyway. Allow them to give you any information available. It is up to you to say your question out loud, write it on a piece of paper or simple ask it inside your head. 


After you have posed your question, you can start shuffling the cards. At this point you need to decide whether you'll be using reversed cards or not. If your answers is positive, the best way to shuffle your cards is clockwise. If not, make sure you shuufle in a way that all cards remain dignified. While shuffling, keep repeating your question. When you feel you're ready, you can cut the deck and start pulling your cards. 

I won't give any advice about how to cut the deck because I never cut mine. I simply pull cards out of the pile with no specific order but most people cut in three and then pull the cards one after the other. Feel free to experiment and find the best method for you. When ready, start pulling your cards and placing them in the correct positions according to the spread you're perfomring. 

When all the cards are set on the table, the first thing you should do is look at the general, big picture of the spread. Every reading has its own energy and you should look for it before you start analysing the cards seperately. Are there any Major Arcana cards? In which positions? Are there any reversed cards? In which positions? Is there a predominant suit? Did you get large numbers or small ones? Is there any group of cards forming (for example three Fives)? All of these things are trying to attract your attention. 

After the initial understanding, you can start analysing the cards. Allow each card to communicate with you. Read the whole meaning in the Interpretations section and not just the keywords. A different line may attact your attention every time. You also need to associate the card with its position. A positive card in a negative position will always indicate problems. Lastly, the cards must always be interpreted according to the question posed. For example, the Two of Cups in a business matter is a well-meant and positive partnership and not an affair in the office, unless you have other strong indications.

After you have finished your reading, stay with the cards for a while. No matter what answer you got, there's no need to panick or party. The cards are a tool to live a better life. Try to benefit from what they show you, instead of crying over your fate or quitting hard work. You make your own destiny. The cards can only show you how. In addition, don't ask the cards the same questions again and again. Show some respect. Allow their answers to grow inside your head and make a journal entry if necessary. Even if the answer is not clear now, it will come with time. 

After finishing your reading, it is advisable that you store your deck away from any indiscreet people. You can wrap it in a silk cloth or keep it in a box. Your Tarot deck is your personal treasure. It doesn't have to be a secret but it needs careful and respectful handling.