Can a sceptic use Tarot cards for introspection? Of course! (You knew I was going to say that, didn’t you?)
Many people use journals to reflect on themselves, their actions, thoughts, beliefs and motives. Others may want to examine their role in a particular situation. One of the problems is: where to start?
The difference is that whereas the diviner assumes the cards hold the truth, which must be considered, the sceptic reflects on what the cards “reveal” when card position and card meaning are combined.
The diviner starts with an external source of truth or inspiration, while the sceptic works purely from within.
Note that for those who use the cards for divination, the technique described in this post offers a different—but useful—way to approach the cards.
The sceptic way
To a sceptic, reading the cards means delving into the cards to find what is true about the situation; this blog contains several examples of reading for introspection that do not involve magical means.*
In contrast, with the technique described in this post, you seek the truth by applying one meaning to the cards, then decide how much you agree or disagree with the result.
How it works
You can use any spread for this exercise, but don’t include spread positions such as “outcome” or “advice.” You want to reflect on a situation and its various aspects, not predict a probable future or receive advice. You can, however, include a “probable outcome” card if you want to reflect on the possible consequences of the situation. An advice card can be added later if you wish to consider the next step.
Shuffle and draw the cards as usual, and lay them out.
Once you have the cards on the table, you need to decide on a fixed meaning (one keyword or phrase) for each. You can use a keyword traditionally assigned to the card, a keyword used by a particular author or deck, or make up your own.
Now put card and spread position together, and ask yourself: “In this situation, is it true?” Your answer might be one of the following:
- Yes, it is true.
- No, this is not true at all.
- True, but what is also true, is …
- True, but why is this true?
- Somewhat true, but it more like this …
- True, but I would like to change this.
- Not true, but I like certain aspects.
- I wish! Why? Why isn’t it true? How can I make it true?
- True (or not true), but it reminds me of …
Using your answer as inspiration, start the reflection or self-exploration exercise.