Single Card Tarot Exercise

I discovered this exercise in a book by Barbara Moore and its a great tool to learn the many ways of interpreting a single tarot card.

deck

To start, come up with a list of questions to ask the tarot,  5  or 6 is a good number, but if you can think of more, fantastic. The list doesn’t have to be questions you actually have, we aren’t doing a reading, just an exercise to get to know the cards better, so they can be questions anyone might ask. This was the list I used (feel free to use these if you like.):

  • What can I do to improve my chances of getting a job soon?
  • What will be most helpful for me to do in order to find love?
  • How can I discover my highest spiritual path?
  • How can I overcome what is currently blocking me?
  • What can I do to improve my relationship?

written questionNote: You may notice that I framed my questions in a way that focuses on receiving advice and taking action, rather than predicting an outcome. I find that it is much more helpful and empowering to ask for guidance so that you can go into the world and manifest the outcome that you want, rather than just asking for an arbitrary outcome that you have no influence on. I believe that its a good idea, even in exercises, to practice forming questions this way.

Back to the exercise…

Once you have your list of questions shuffle your cards however you like. If you want, ask the tarot to provide you with the card that will be the best teacher as you go through the exercise. This will give you the opportunity to state your intention, another part of tarot work which I believe is very important. Once you have shuffled thoroughly select a card in whichever manner you prefer. Use that card to answer each of the questions you have listed. Notice how the meaning of the card changes based on the type of question you are answering. Notice whether the card changes from positive to negative, or negative to positive with the different questions. Which answers come easy? Which are harder to figure out? Are there any that you can’t figure out at all? What methods help the answer come more easily (deep breathing? having a dialogue with the card? closing your eyes and visualizing the card? meditating on the card etc.)

IMG_20131114_144632 When I did this exercise I  got the Five of Pentacles. Apparently the tarot felt like it would be most helpful to give me a challenge, because using this card was quite challenging. This is what my answers looked like:

  • What can I do to improve my chances of getting a job soon?
    It appears that you may not have many resources of your own, so it could be beneficial to ask for help. If you aren’t good at writing a resume find an online resume tutor. Check with your local employment office for workshops or classes on resume writing and interviewing strategies.
  • What will be most helpful for me to do in order to find love?
    Work on your growth as a charitable, compassionate person. Consider volunteering, doing service for those in need, soup kitchens, charity organizing. Its a great way to strengthen positive qualities in yourself and to meet people.
  • How can I discover my highest spiritual path?
    Be humble and accept people where they are in their life circumstances and on their life’s path.
  • How can I overcome what is currently blocking me?
    You may be stuck in a loop of poverty thinking, or feelings of deficiency. Trust yourself and that what you have to offer is valuable.
  • What can I do to improve my relationship?
    It looks like financial situations may be forcing both of you to focus so much on the day-to-day logistics of life, perhaps working extra hours, or picking up a second job, that you are missing out on eachother. Consider where your relationship is lacking and see if you can dedicate some time to working on those areas together.

You can repeat this exercise with as many cards as you like, the  whole deck if you feel motivated, though that may take a couple days worth of practice. If there is a particular question that you just can’t answer with a given card, come back to it later with fresh eyes, but do come back to it.

I hope everyone found the exercise helpful. Feel free to comment and let me know what you thought.

12 thoughts on “Single Card Tarot Exercise

  1. Wow this is such a good exercise! I sometimes have problems to identify different aspects (like love, health and job/career issues) with the same card – if you have a specific question.. this can really help you to deepen your tarot knowledge in a personal way 😉 I asked the same questions and got the high priestess and I really think it´s THE ANSWER 😀 – a lot about trusting and listening to inner guidance and opening to Higher Spirit .

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    • Hi Marta,
      I’m so glad you liked the exercise. I am always excited when the High Priestess shows up, I agree, she is all about listening to your inner guidance and she also makes me think of wisdom, the mysteries of the universe and limitless spiritual potential.

      Like

  2. This is exactly what I need right now, as I’m a beginner tarot card reader. Practice and exercises such as these will definitely help me pin-point what it is I need to work on more. Thank you so much for sharing this exercise!

    Like

  3. Nice article! Had to check it out after the mention on Kate’s blog. I really like d your interpretations of the Five of Pentacles in the various situations- all insightful and refreshing, but still very true of that card. Thanks for the example. 🙂

    Like

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