Favorite Tarot Spreads
In this thread, feel free to tell us about your favorite Tarot Spread or ask questions about the ones I've listed here.
I've begun the discussion with a bunch of spreads that I like.
First is a post I wrote of 43 Short Spreads for Reading Any Situation. It is the one of the most popular posts on this website other than the Predidtion Page. Since originally posting this list of spread, over 5 million people have viewed it. The spreads are a combination of spreads I found including one old classic, spreads I wrote, and spreads my students wrote when I asked them to make up spreads for themselves as an exercise. If you forget where it is, you can always find it in the menu at the top of each page under ARTICLES then it pulls down to Tarot.
Second, no discussion of Tarot spreads is complete without the Celtic Cross (go here to read a short article I wrote about it) - an eleven card spread that I do for every reading I give. It's classic and is probably the most used spread in the Tarot.
Of the list of 43 short spreads shown in the link, these are my favorites (by number):
- 42. Yes-No Oracle for answering a Yes-No question. You can read more about it here in a post I wrote.
- 6. Relationship Spread for getting insight about you in a particular relationship.
- 11. The Blind Side for getting some insight about yourself you can't see.
- 31. Do This, Don't Do That Spread for some quick advice.
43 Short Tarot Spreads for Reading Any Situation
Unless otherwise indicated, lay the cards horizontally from left to right. An asterisk means it's one of my favorites.
RELATIONSHIPS WITH OTHERS
- RELATIONSHIP SPREAD* This applies to any kind of relationship.
- On the left side, throw three cards that represent you.
- On the right side, throw three cards that represent your friend.
- The card in the middle is the advice card as to how you can come together and understand how to have a better relationship.
2. FUTURE LOVE
- My future true love
- Will the attraction be instant or a gradual awakening?
- What will this person be like physically?
- What will this person be like emotionally?
- When/where/how will I meet this person?
3. NEW RELATIONSHIP
- What I bring to the relationship.
- What the other person brings to the relationship.
- Nature of the relationship for me
- Challenges to the relationship for me.
- How the relationship will progress.
FINDING THE RIGHT MATE
- What I need to know about myself in partnership
- What I am looking for in a partner.
- Environmental factors.
- Obstacles within myself to finding the right partner
- What will help me find a new partner
RELATIONSHIP SPREAD (for a specific loved one)
- General situation between you and your object of desire.
- How he/she feels about you.
- How you feel about him/her.
- Obstacles to a relationship with this person.
- Outcome/Advice (answer to “Is this person for me?
- GROWING TO RELATIONSHIP
Lay out six cards in an upward diagonal from left to right.
Card 1: Where I am right now in my love journey.
Cards 2-5: Lessons I need to learn or steps I need to take to attain love.
Card 6: Outcome.
- LOVED ONE ON THE OTHER SIDE
- How is my loved one doing?
- Anything my loved one wants to say to me.
- What’s it like on the other side?
- How can I best support you?
- YOUR CHILD
- What my child came into life to learn.
- Where my child is now.
- What graces my child.
- What my child needs from me.
- Where the child is headed over the next ___ (state time frame).
- YOUR PET
- What my pet is feeling.
- What my pet is trying to tell me?
- What my pet most wants from me.
- What I can do to help my pet?
- My pet’s general health.
- PERSON WE DON’T LIKE SPREAD
- What is it I don’t like about this person?
- What is it that this person triggers within me that I have been avoiding?
- How might this person be a teacher for me?
- What obstacles are there to my learning?
- What do I need in order to grow from this relationship?
SPREADS ABOUT YOUR PURPOSE, LESSONS, SPIRITUAL DEVELOPMENT
- BLIND SIDE SPREAD *
- This is your outside appearance; what you know and others can see.
- This is the unknown; what you’re not aware of, no one can see, but what is ruling.
- This is the hidden; what you know but won’t show others.
- This is the blind spot; what you can’t see but what others see in you.
- DHARMA SPREAD (SPIRITUAL LIFE LESSONS)
- What is my lesson right now?
- How can I grow spiritually at this time?
- How else can I grow spiritually at this time?
- What’s my biggest challenge at this time?
- Where am I headed?
- MANDALA SPREAD
- Overview of myself
- Ambitions, goals
- Dependencies, faulty beliefs
- THE WORLD BEYOND
- What is it like on the other side?
- What does the other side have to teach me?
- Why do we come here?
- Anything else to know about the other side.
- INNER PEACE SPREAD
1: Quality within me that leads me to inner peace.
2: Obstacle within me to attaining inner peace.
3: If there is any one thing I should be doing to achieve inner peace?
4: Something in my environment that helps or blocks me.
- SELF DISCOVERY SPREAD
- Who have I been?
- Who am I?
- Who am I becoming?
- SIX STEPS TO FULFILLMENT
Lay out six cards in an upward diagonal from left to right.
Card 1: Where I am right now in my journey to fulfillment.
Card 2-5: Lessons I need to learn to reach fulfillment.
Card 6: Outcome.
- PATH TO HAPPINESS
- What do I need most right now to be happy?
- What am I focusing on instead?
- What quality in myself should I develop more?
- Where am I headed in the short-term?
- Where am I headed in the long-term?
- MY PURPOSE
- What is the purpose that I was brought here to fulfill?
- What obstacles do I need to get over?
- 3 Lessons (lay out 3 cards) I need to learn along the way.
- Who or what can help me attain my goal?
- What can I give to the world?
- TREASURE WITHIN ME
- How do other people perceive me?
- What is my shining self?
- What is my inner most passion?
- What is hidden within me that is waiting to be discovered?
- MY PURPOSE THIS LIFETIME
- What did you come into this world for this lifetime?
- What did you come into your specific family for?
- What is the specific emotion that’s been most difficult for you to learn to use to your advantage this time?
- What is your biggest challenge this time around?
- What will be your greatest gift this time?
- What is your greatest lesson this time?
CAREER, MONEY, HEALTH
- CAREER SPREAD (FINDING MY LIFE’S WORK)
- What I am good at doing.
- What I enjoy doing.
- My calling.
- Biggest challenge within myself
- Issues in my environment I should know about.
- Anything else I should understand about finding my right work
- The next best step to bring me to my true work.
- Someone who will help me along the way.
- My current financial situation.
- What is the lesson here for me regarding money?
- Who or what project will bring in more money?
- HEALTH SPREAD
1: What is the overall state of my health?
2: What is the overall state of my mind?
3: What is the overall state of my body?
4: What is the overall state of my spirit?
5: How do I integrate these parts of myself?
- CHAKRA SPREAD Tells condition of your body’s energy centers
1: Root chakra – physical, including sexual, health
2: Hara – center of your being, digestion, overall life force
3: Solar Plexus – strength of will
4: Heart chakra – your love
5: Throat Chakra – communication center
6: Intellect Chakra – intellectual center
7: Crown Chakra – spiritual center
- MY FOCUS AT THIS TIME IN MY LIFE
1: The issue that’s upper most in my mind.
2: Something more to know about it.
3: Obstacle to my focus.
4: What to do about it?
- EMPOWERMENT SPREAD
- This is my power?
- How it is best used.
- What inhibits this power within me?
- How can I bring it out more?
- MY ESSENCE
- Soul card
- Personality or external card
- Crossing card or challenge
SPREADS ABOUT A SPECIFIC SITUATION & WHAT TO DO
| 29. EVENT SPREAD|
1. What does this event have in store for me?
2. What do I need to watch out for?
3. What can I do about it?
30. ADVICE SPREAD
|31. DO THIS-DON’T DO THAT-SPREAD *|
1. Do This
2. Don’t Do This
32. UNDERSTANDING SELF IN ANY SITUATION
1. My inner self regarding a situation
2. My outer self regarding a situation
3. What I need to confront.
4. What’s helping me?
- PROBLEM SOLVING SPREAD
- Nature of the problem
- What led up to the current problem
- Current attitude/actions that preserve the status quo
- Secondary gains from staying in the situation
- Necessary changes in attitude/actions
- STALEMATE SPREAD
- The overall conflict/situation
- How they really feel about you
- How you really feel about them
- Common Grounds (what the 2 of you have in common and can use to help the situation)
- ADVERSITY SPREAD
- Describe the situation I find myself in.
- What do I fear?
- What’s the lesson in it for me?
- How might I end out benefiting from this situation?
- Obstacles within me to my growth
- Outcome at this time.
- PROBLEM SOVING SPREAD
- Who? Who is involved in the situation?
- What? What does the situation involve?
- Why? Why did the event(s) take place?
- When? When did the events take place?
- Where? Where did the events take place
- How? How did this event/situation come about?
SPREADS ABOUT THE FUTURE
- FUTURE DIRECTION
- What do I need to progress?
- Is there a positive help to be asked for?
- Is there a venue to pursue?
- PAST, PRESENT, FUTURE
- THE NEXT DECADE OF MY LIFE
- What am I finishing now and leaving?
- Who are my guides for this next journey?
- What traits can I work on to achieve a more successful outcome?
- What will be my new learn strengths?
- WHAT’S AHEAD OF ME?
- What you need to leave behind, to release.
- What you must confront.
- What you need to know.
- What you attain.
- PAST LIFE SPREAD
- Show me a past life.
- What was my purpose in that life?
- What what my profession or avocation in that life?
- What other family members were in that life?
- Were there other people from this life in that life?
- What lessons did I learn?
- Did I fulfill my purpose?
- YES-NO ORACLE * To read more about this spread, go here.
- Write your yes-no question down.
- Remove the Wheel of Fortune from the deck and place it before you face up.
- Shuffle the rest of the deck, with your mind on the problem. Spread the cards in a fan, face down. With your left hand, draw seven cards at random. Put them face down on top of the Wheel. Set the remaining deck aside.
- Turn the Wheel of Fortune face down like the other seven cards. Shuffle these eight cards until you no longer know where the Wheel is.
- Deal the eight cards in a square consisting of four positions, so that there are two cards in each position:
- Top Left: The 1st position (cards 1 & 5) signifies – YES.
- Top Right: The 2nd position (cards 2 & 6) signifies – SOON.
- Bottom Left: The 3rd position (cards 3 & 7) signifies – DELAY.
- Bottom Right: The 4th position (cards 4 & 8) signifies – NO.
- WHO AM I? (Or WHO ARE YOU or WHO IS S(HE)?
Use just the 16 court cards from the deck. Shuffle while asking the question, who am I? Pull cards randomly from the deck to answer each question:
- This is my inner most self.
- This is my personality or outward self.
- This is how others see me.
- This is a challenging aspect of myself (an aspect that is troubling).
- This is aspect of myself I wish to develop further.
- This is the person I am becoming
Thanks Jeanne for all the wonderful Ideas!
I am always looking for spreads that suit my questions best, and will most certainly check out the links!
The spread that I am sharing is one of my favourites and more or less my most used. It Is an 11 Card spread, and best used for a detailed reading. I had created the spread to gather as much information as possible . May be of use to somebody:
2 3 4
6 7 8
1.) QUESTION/ Inquiries or Needs being Addressed
2.) SITUATION/ What is Happening In and Around
3.) EXPLANATION/ Reason of the Situation, Why and How
4.) OUTCOME/ Prediction Based on Your Current Course of Action
5.) INTERCHANGEABLE/ What You Can Presently Change to Alter Your Outcome
6.) CONSTANT/ What You Can Not Change about your Outcome
7.) SUBCONSCIOUS/ What This Means on a Deeper Level
8.) PRESENT/ What is Occurring or What to Expect , Now - 7 Days
9.) FUTURE/ What is Occurring or What to Expect , 1 - 3 Months
10.) MESSAGE/ Messages Passed forth from Spirit or Guide
11.) SUMMARY/ What to Remember in Particular About All this Information Moving forth
Hope you guys like it and find it use able, I know its helps me break things down.
Sometimes I also will pull an extra card for a number to join them together if you feel you need more insight.
Great thread Jeanne, thanks for posting it:) As I've only been getting to learn tarot again recently I've not delved into more complex spreads yet. My favourite to use at the moment is just a 3 card spread, without any assignment of past/present/future, or similar - I literally draw 3 cards and use those meanings together. It might sound strange and a bit simple but it seems to be working great for me.
Blue, I'm glad you brought up the usefulness of just throwing down some cards with no questions attached to them.
I do that a lot. I've given entire readings after throwing down just one card. Sometimes I'm so stimulated by the energy of the person or the issue I'm reading that just one card can trigger a world of insight. And that's all the cards are for anyway -- to stimulate and expand your mind from the usual thinking.
That said, a good spread can help me when my mind is not able to find the questions to ask. So a good spread can trigger insights I might not get from free-thinking a card.
Spreads are nothing more than questions, and sometimes the insights we get when using the cards are only as good as the questions we ask.
A good spread lays out an issue so you cover it well. An open ended card with no questions enables us to let spirit speak without limiting the issue. So I need both methods.