When you get a new deck of tarot cards, it can be exciting. Naturally, you’ll want to use your new cards and start by cleansing and preparing them for use. The next thing you’ll likely want to do is try them out, which means practicing a few different spreads to help you get started.
It’s usually best to stick with easy spreads when you’re starting off with a new deck, but keep in mind that there are dozens of them to choose from. You can stick with familiar spreads or create some new ones on your own; in either case, it’s good to do some practicing with your new tarot cards, and that’s what this article is about.
What Are The Best Tarot Card Spreads for a New Deck? Some popular tarot card spreads for new decks include 1-card, 3-card, and 5-card spreads, as well as cross formations, rectangle formations, yes-or-no formations, Celtic cross formation, and many others. The spreads below are just some of the spreads that are easy to do and therefore perfect for “initiating” a new deck of tarot cards.
Why Does the Spread Matter?
In tarot readings, everything you do is important, including not only the spreads but also the effort you put forth to “ground” the client, also known as the querent. With your deck of 78 cards, ask the querent to shuffle and cut the deck, and recommend that they think about their question or their intentions while doing so.
In addition, some spreads are easier when trying to accommodate certain questions and concerns, but all it takes is a little practice to know which spread is best for which client.
Below are some simple spreads that you can do when you have a brand-new deck of tarot cards and you want to initiate them and get them ready for use.
The Interview Spread
To conduct efficient readings, you have to bond with your new tarot cards. You have to get to know each and every card in the deck, and this is especially important if you’re a beginning tarot card reader. One of the best ways to do this is to “interview” each and every card and ask them questions, then listen intuitively for their reply. Most people stick with a basic spread when doing these interviews; most commonly, the spread is made up of six cards and you’ll be interviewing six cards at a time.
You can make it easy on yourself and create two rows of three cards, six cards in a long row, or even a circle consisting of six cards. In fact, you can spread out the six cards however you wish, even creating a spread you made up yourself! For each card, you’ll ask a total of six questions, which usually include:
- What is your most significant characteristic?
- What are your strengths?
- What are your weaknesses?
- What important information would you like to teach me?
- How can we best learn from and work with each other?
- What outcome might we expect from our relationship?
These questions, of course, are merely suggestions. If you feel like it is more important to ask different questions because they will help you get to know your cards even better, then you should use those questions instead. The process is very personalized, and the main thing you want is to feel comfortable with your tarot cards and feel like they are providing you with the answers you need to bring you even closer to these cards.
If you want to jot down some notes for each card, go ahead and do so. This helps you remember the “answers” you received from the cards each time you asked a question, and you can refer back to the notes anytime you like.
The 1-Card Tarot Spread
Sometimes, the KISS (keep it simple stupid) method is the best one to follow, and this certain applies when reading tarot cards. You can start by thinking up questions that cannot be answered with a “yes” or “no,” and pulling just one card keeps things uncomplicated. Before you pull a card, think up questions such as:
- How can I … ?
- What can I do about … ?
- Where can I find … ?
- How should I … ?
Indeed, you can ask all sorts of questions, but don’t forget to cleanse the deck before you get started. When you shuffle, take your time and don’t stop until you sense that it’s time to stop and spread out the cards to get your answers. Most importantly, you’ll want to consult two things: the official guidebook that came with your deck, and your intuition.
The 3-Card Tarot Spread
The 3-card spread is popular with beginners because of its simplicity and with experienced readers because it allows for deep insight without overwhelming the querent. Here are some suggestions for the 3-card tarot spread:
- Past/present/future spreads
- Situation/obstacle/advice or outcome spreads
- Mind/body/spirit tarot spreads
Naturally, the first word in the title will be answered by card #1 in the spread, and so on. These spreads are relatively easy to learn and can be adapted to numerous situations, not just the three listed above. Whatever situation you adapt it to, this spread provides you with some easy answers to some complex questions, making it a very valuable spread in the end.
The 5-Card Tarot Spread
If the question the querent wants to ask is “why,” the 5-card tarot spread is a good one. Here are some spreads that help you make the most out of those five cards:
- Cross formation. Place three cards in a row, one card on top of the middle card and another on the bottom of the middle card.
- Rectangle formation. This one is good for exploring a theme and its variations. Make a triangle with the four cards and place the fifth card in the very center. The center card is the theme card and it is usually pulled last.
Spreads for a Focused Question
There are two main tarot card spreads you can use when a focused question is involved, and they are:
- Yes or no spread. This is a very simple spread that can be manipulated several different ways. You’ll pull just one card that represents your answer.
- Celtic cross spread. This one involves 10 cards and, therefore, isn’t recommended for beginners. It involves creating a large cross, then a column of four additional cards.
Remember that with new decks, you’ll naturally want to use them quickly, so keep your spreads as simple as possible so you can initiate your deck, get used to its nuances, and prepare to use it to help yourself and others.
There are also 1, 3, and 5-card spreads for specific situations, such as love, mental healing, making decisions, and so much more. The better you know your deck of cards, the easier it will be to decide which spread is right for you. Remember, you can always create spreads from scratch that make you feel more comfortable with your cards, especially if none of the traditional spreads are doing a good job “speaking” to you and helping you become familiar with the cards.
Improving your intuitive ability starts with being as comfortable as possible with your tarot cards. When you get a new deck, you can do this by practising some familiar spreads and coming up with a few new ones of your own.
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