When I first discovered the Tarot – a million years ago – I was intrigued because I was led to believe that it was a fortune-telling tool that would help me navigate my life with more ease.
There were times when I just wanted the Tarot to tell me what to do. Should I change my college major – yes or no? Should I go out with that weird but intriguing guy – yes or no? My relationship with the Tarot was shallow and inexperienced and not particularly fruitful. Eventually, I stopped picking up my deck.
Fast forward twenty-five years and a LOT of life experience later – When called to the tarot this time it was from a much different perspective and with a great deal more wisdom.
Growth in How the Tarot is Used
Then, it was with a different intention. Although admittedly, there are times when I still feel it would be so much easier to just do what someone else told me to do than to figure things out for myself. I now realize that the only way to truly learn what we need to learn is to look inside and work with what’s there.
So, what does all this have to do with yes and no questions in the tarot? Yes and no questions are not only very difficult to answer accurately with the tarot, but the responses also we get from the typical one card, yes or no reading is incomplete. There is no logic behind the answer – no lesson to be learned.
Let’s look at these two issues separately. First – yes and no questions are difficult to answer accurately with the tarot because we humans have free will that prevents us from being 100% sure anything will happen. In a sense, it’s like the butterfly effect. I could do a reading for you today that is factual today – at the moment of the reading and pretty much only a short time after the reading. By tomorrow, all bets are off. This is because at any point anyone involved in the situation around your reading could do something to change the trajectory of the outcome in the course of simply living their daily life.
The Real Gift of the Tarot
The second point is that the real gift of the tarot is the way it can be used to help us look inside – see what’s there – and figure out what to do with it. Rather than a crutch to make our decisions for us, the Tarot functions as a sounding board and a reflection pool. When we begin to use the tarot to look inside, we begin to reap the benefits of that relationship.
We’re going to be talking a lot more about this as we move forward. It’s a very large part of the reason for the podcast – to learn to use the tarot as a tool for reflection and growth.
However – you may still find yourself stuck on occasion when you’ve done the work to figure something out and can’t quite get there – or maybe you’re trying to decide on something superficial – which restaurant to go to or how to cut your hair next time you’re at the salon. These are great times to use a quick yes or no spread and here is how to do it.
Doing a Yes / No Tarot Reading
- Focus, center, visualize
- Write down the question
- Choose a signifier card to represent yourself
- Put that card back into the deck and shuffle the cards while considering your question.
- When satisfied with your shuffle, cut and restack the cards
- Begin to flip over the cards
- Stop when you flip open your signifier
- THE NEXT CARD IS THE CARD YOU WILL READ TO ANSWER YOUR QUESTION
- Use what you know about that card to draw your conclusions.
- Consider the suit – is the focus on ideas, actions, emotions, or things?
- Consider the number – remember your numerology
- Does the symbolism shed any light?
- What do you see in the card aside from the traditional meaining?
- What does your gut say?
- Is this traditionally what I would consider a positive card for the outcome I want?
Don’t Bank on the Answers to Y/N Questions
Just remember, yes and no questions are crazy tricky, and take your responses with a grain of salt. If someone else asks you to do a reading for them that asks a yes or no question, my suggestion is to see if they can re-phrase the question to something more open-ended. If they insist on the yes or no reading, I would make the limitations clear to them.
If you love yes and no readings and feel like you’re getting results, by all means, more power to you. Likewise, if you’re fairly psychic and want to use the cards as a confirmation, of course, do so. Ultimately, the Tarot is your tool and you will learn to use it your way. Then, you can decide for yourself if yes and no readings are for you.