Sunday, October 7, 2007

Lesson 4a -- The Post-It Spread

Questioners a.k.a. Querents rarely have very clear questions for the tarot. An example of this is the woman who came to me recently worried about her son because he had suddenly become very religious and fearful of God and what would happen to his and her soul. She couldn't figure out where it was coming from and wanted to know what the tarot had to say. How do I ask the tarot THAT? That's where the Post-Its come in. Using one Post-It note for each question, I wrote the following on several sheets.

What does he fear?
Who might be influencing his thinking on this subject right now?
What does Mom need to consider about this situation right now?

I spread the Post-Its out on the table and considered them as I shuffled, trusting the Universe to spit out the right cards for the right Post-Its. I drew four cards, one for each Post-It. For me, "Oracle" is sort of a wild card, giving Source the option of sending me a message it knows I'll get.

Once I drew all the cards and considered them, I had the option of drawing more cards for each original card that I drew. These extra cards are often called Clarification Cards. If I don't understand what Source is trying to tell me on a particular question or aspect, then I draw a clarification card on top of that card. If that doesn't help, I know that I'm probably asking the wrong question.

Ultimately I ended up drawing about eleven cards on this issue because the cards that came up opened doors to more questions that helped us narrow down the issue and gave Mom some ideas on how to help her son. Having the Post-Its helped me keep track of what we were asking and what the cards represented.

Post-Its let you create a spread on the fly without having to remember what position represents what. You can lay them out very artistically, if you like. They help you narrow down the question like you'd narrow down a Google search.

Spreads are very personal and there is no right way to do a spread. Some look very fancy, others are quite plain. The Celtic Cross is very popular because it's so aesthetically pleasing and has a long history. I only use it when I'm working with someone who seems to need a big, pretty, fancy spread. Otherwise I prefer the more practical (for me) Post-It spread. Sometimes I rely on a simple three card spread, often ascribing the different meanings to the different positions:

Examples of what meanings I might use are:

1. Past, 2. Present, 3. Future. or
1. The heart of the matter, 2. what is desired, 3. what is suggested (by Source). or
1. What I want, 2. What I need, 3. What Source suggests I consider.

Sometimes no matter what spread you use, Source will have its own ideas about things. Pay attention, if the cards aren't making any sense it could be because the question that was asked is not the question Source cares to answer or it could be that you are asking the wrong question. When seemingly inappropriate cards come up, pay attention to them and see what message or story they may be trying to impart. Do they make you want to ask the Querent questions unrelated to the issue they are asking about? Then do! It's often the case that the Querent doesn't know or doesn't want you to know what they're really searching for. Be mindful of this and listen to your intuition as you view the cards you draw. If all else fails, ask the tarot what the Questioner is really concerned about or, ask the tarot what the Questioner should be asking.