Tarot Clarification Cards Address Relationship Issue

You can almost always glean additional and helpful information from a Tarot spread by pulling clarification cards. While there are many ways to select clarification cards, below I will outline my preferred method.

First, let’s take a look at a simple 7 card Overview Spread* that reads fairly straightforwardly. Later, we’ll add the clarification cards.

 

Tarot spread, overview spread, card positions, livingwithcards.com
The Overview Spread – card positions

Card 1: Significator or Theme Card (Represents the Querent or describes an important aspect about the topic under consideration)

Cards 2 & 6: The Recent Past / Current Influences

Card 3: What is Above You (Describes what’s weighing on the Querent’s mind at the time of the reading)

Cards 4 & 7: Near Future/ What Happens Next

Card 5: What is Below You (Describes what the Querent dreads, doesn’t want to think about or wants to avoid)

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The template above shows how to lay out the spread once you’re done shuffling the cards in your usual manner while thinking about the topic you’d like the cards to discuss. You can preselect Card 1 if you like (for example, choose the King or Queen who normally represents you, or choose VI-The Lovers for a relationship overview), or let the deck choose for you. I usually let the deck pick the Significator or Theme Card, but please do whatever feels comfortable to you. You’ll still get a valid reading.

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In the following example, the Querent (person asking the question) was a single female who found herself unexpectedly pregnant. She wanted to know if marriage (which she and the man had discussed as an option) was a good idea. I drew the following cards:

Overview tarot spread Universal Waite tarot deck
Overview Spread – Universal Waite Tarot Deck

Universal Waite Tarot Deck

Card 1 – Significator or Theme Card: III-The Empress

Cards 2 & 6 – The Recent Past / Current Influences: 10 of Wands + 2 of Wands

Card 3 – What is Above You (What’s Weighing on Your Mind at the Time of the Reading): 8 of Swords

Cards 4 & 7 – Near Future/ What Happens Next: 3 of Pentacles + 4 of Swords

Card 5: What is Below You (What You Are Avoiding, Dreading or Don’t Want to Think About): 7 of Wands

 

Since the Querent was indeed pregnant, III-Empress as the Significator or Theme Card was certainly appropriate. I quickly noted, however, a lack of cards in the spread suggesting marriage and/or happiness.

10 of Wands and 2 of Wands in the Recent Past position (Cards 2 + 6) suggested feelings of overwhelm and off-centeredness. 8 of Swords in the Above position (Card 3) suggested a sense of entrapment, awkwardly countered by the independent, go-it-alone vibe presented by 7 of Wands in the Below “Don’t Want to Think About It” position (Card 5).

I noted that the Wands cards, which in general can indicate hope and inspiration, were in the Recent Past and Below positions (Cards 2, 6 and 5) while cards from the suit of Swords (indicating fear and worry) showed up in the Above position (Card 3) and as the last card of the Near Future (Card 7).

The child itself did not seem to factor in (no Pages), and once again I’ll mention the lack of cards indicating love, marriage, cooperation and/or happiness.

The Overview Spread confirmed the Querent’s sense of feeling conflicted. With 3 of Pentacles and 4 of Swords in the Near Future position (Cards 4 + 7), it seemed likely that any potential growth of the relationship between her and the baby’s father would come to a halt. Perhaps they would agree to take a break from each other. This interpretation seemed to be supported by 7 of Wands in the “Don’t Want to Think About It” Below position (Card 5) which speaks to what one is avoiding, dreading or not wanting to consider. I got the sense the querent didn’t want to admit to herself (let alone the baby’s father) that she would prefer to remain independent.

Before I went any further, I wanted to see the clarification cards, knowing they would either support or refute my intuitions.

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How I Use Numerology to Calculate Tarot Clarification Cards

Each Major Arcana card has its own value, 0 – 22.

Each Minor Arcana card 1 – 10 has its own value.

In my system, Kings = 11, Queens = 12, Knights =13 and Pages = 14. Some readers do the reverse. Either way it’s up to you, just be consistent.

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In this reading there were no court cards so the math was easy enough. I added up the numerical values of the cards in the layout and reduced the total to a number equaling 22 or below. Here, the cards added up to 37, which equals 3 + 7 = 10 = X-Wheel of Fortune.

The next step was to find X-Wheel of Fortune in the remaining deck and pull it out, along with the card before and the card after, giving me a three-card clarification:

Tarot clarification cards VII-Chariot, X-Wheel of Fortune, 5 of Pentacles
Tarot Clarification Cards

 

VII-The Chariot continued with the theme of independence and wanting to do one’s own thing while 5 of Pentacles suggested hardship and more restriction. X-Wheel of Fortune in the middle suggested to me the course had not yet been set. While I felt the fate of this relationship was in the querent’s hands (Chariot), that didn’t guarantee the change would be positive (especially with 5 of Pentacles following the Wheel). “Sleeping on it” (4 of Swords) was not bad advice. She owed it to herself to carefully consider her options and desires in light of what would ultimately prove best for all parties.

Blessings,

Mary Hawkins

*I learned the Overview Spread from The Art of Cartomancy website by Kapherus, which is now back online, I’m happy to say 🙂

2 thoughts on “Tarot Clarification Cards Address Relationship Issue”

    1. Hello Kristen,

      I’m delighted to hear you found my tarot clarification card technique useful. Thanks so much for letting me know! Over the years I’ve found it consistently provides rich, additional insights to tarot card readings, which is why I almost always use it. I’d love to hear how it works for you 🙂

      Blessings,
      Mary Hawkins

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