Is something holding you back from giving tarot card readings? Do you have some unanswered questions that you’re just not sure about and don’t know who to go to get real answers from?
There’s something about tarot that seems a little more intimidating than oracle cards. It feels like you really need to “know” the cards in order to move forward, and you might be afraid that you’ll do something wrong in a reading. I know, because I have the same feelings about jumping into tarot!
This week, I’m rolling out our first guest blog post with tarot goddess Brit Charmichael. She’s going to be answering all of your tarot questions so you feel confident about doing readings for yourself and others. Enjoy!
Psychics. Tarot. Crystals. Intuition. Spirit Guides.
Four years ago, it was all new to me, but my curiosity kept pulling me in the woo woo direction.
Fast forward, I haven’t skipped a personal daily tarot reading yet and now I’m communicating with past loved ones (including my biological father). We can dive into that another time.
Because tarot is such a taboo topic, I thought diving deep into the questions I get asked ALLLL the time would help to debunk some of the funk we hold around the tool of tarot.
I always like to point out tarot is just another tool of divination helping us connect to the unseen world of energy and vibration. The cards reflect back to us the matching vibration of what we’re feeling so we can see more objectively and clearly into our inner world. The cards help us to look deeper within and uncover our Truth. No matter what religious background you come from, this tool will help you to make that deeper, Divine connection you crave with yourself.
Let’s dive into the most frequent questions I get asked about the tool of tarot…
How can a person be objective to the reading if they are not “trained” to be objective?
Just like learning any skill, you must practice. Sleeping with the cards under your pillow to receive intuitive guidance will help you to receive clear messages from the cards. This allows your subconscious to show you symbols that represent the energy behind each card. Journaling the meanings of each card and sticking to the traditional meaning will also help you to stay objective until you build confidence on trusting your intuition of what each card represents for you.
How do you learn to interpret the cards besides the booklet that it comes with?
I always get cracked up when I say “Sleep with your cards” because it sounds like you’re in an intimate relationship, but it’s SOO true! Sleep with one card under your pillow each night to allow your subconscious mind to create symbols and meanings for the cards. Your tarot cards are like personal love notes from your soul and will help to guide you along your spiritual path of awakening. You MUST begin to trust your soul’s intuitive guidance that comes through when reading the card. Let’s say you pulled the Magician card – instead of reaching for the booklet to find the answers, look over the card. Visualize it in your imagination. Allow the words, feelings, and visions you have about this card to arise from within. Trust your first feeling. Over time you will develop confidence in being able to trust your inner knowing.
When doing a tarot reading – do you do it alone or with someone?
You can read for yourself or another person. You can also read for an entire group of people. The most important thing when reading is to set the intention of who is receiving the message before beginning.
How do you do a reading for yourself?
When doing a reading for yourself, you want to make sure you’re in a safe, sacred place where you feel comfortable opening up your heart space to receive guidance. There are MANY different spreads you can choose from depending on what guidance you’re seeking. My favorite personal reading is simply pulling one card while asking your guides/Higher Self “What is my Divine daily message today?”
How do you do a reading for someone else?
When doing a reading for someone else, you want to make sure you two are both in agreement on what question is being asked from the reader. The reader will then set an intention to receive guidance through the cards and their own intuition to be delivered on behalf of the reader.
What tarot deck do you recommend for beginners?
I get asked this almost everyday. I recommend something you will USE! Find a deck that makes your heart flutter. Let your soul/intuition guide you to the deck that suits your spirit. Anything from Doreen Virtue is highly recommended. Her decks are filled with positive and uplifting messages and she has something for everyone.
Where do I start?
You can buy your deck at a local crystal shop, bookstore, or even order on Amazon. When you receive your deck, unwrap the deck and light some dried sage or incense to clear away the energy. This helps you to claim the deck as your own. After cleansing the deck, you can begin to sleep with one card a night under your pillow to begin creating a connection with your intuition.
What is your favorite deck?
My current favorite decks are the Archangel Power Tarot and the Butterflies for Life Changes from Doreen Virtue.
How do I shuffle?
Some cards are much larger than other decks, so you can shuffle in whatever way feels right for you. You can slice the deck, spread the cards faced down across the floor and choose, or the traditional Vegas-style shuffle. Any will work. Just mix ‘em up!
How do you care for your decks?
Just like crystals, you want to cleanse and protect their energy. Saging the cards as soon as you receive them is important to clear away any other energy that has been left with the cards. Occasional saging is good if you feel like your connection to the cards is weak. I also recommend NOT letting others touch your cards as they will leave their energy behind.
Should you use the reverse meanings of cards?
If you’re feeling completely blocked and the card comes out upside down, my advice is to trust your gut if you feel the reverse meaning has a message for you. Sometimes I pull a card that’s upside down and the reverse meaning doesn’t apply, then I just go with the actual meaning of the card. I’m not a big fan of looking up the reverse meanings and I always have my cards oriented in the upright position so I typically don’t draw cards that are reversed.
What to do if you get a scary or “bad” reading for yourself or someone else?
Accept it. The cards are reflecting your energy so if something “bad” comes up – see how it applies to your life. Don’t hide from the truth and don’t over analyze the card. I find that sometimes we project our own illusions and fears on to the meaning of the cards which can create confusion when reading for yourself or someone else. I honestly don’t believe there are any “bad” cards in tarot. The “death” card gets such a bad wrap, but the meanings aren’t always literal. It could represent a metaphorical death such as the end of a cycle, job, relationship, or chapter in your life’s story, but not an actual death.
Where did tarot originate from?
Sometime around the 14th century, the tarot likely originated with Mamluk game cards brought to Western Europe from Turkey. By the 1500s, the Italian aristocracy was enjoying a game known as “tarocchi appropriati,” in which players were dealt random cards and used thematic associations with these cards to write poetic verses about one another—somewhat like the popular childhood game “MASH.”
Even the earliest known tarot decks weren’t designed with mysticism in mind; they were actually meant for playing a game similar to modern-day bridge. Wealthy families in Italy commissioned expensive, artist-made decks known as “carte da trionfi” or “cards of triumph.” These cards were marked with suits of cups, swords, coins, and polo sticks (eventually changed to staves or wands), and courts consisting of a king and two male underlings. Tarot cards later incorporated queens, trumps (the wild cards unique to tarot), and the Fool to this system, for a complete deck that usually totaled 78 cards. Today, the suit cards are commonly called the Minor Arcana, while trump cards are known as the Major Arcana.
Is there evidence to support the spiritual practice?
After spending time with your cards, your analytical brain won’t need PROOF that these cards can be used in your spiritual practice, because you will intuitively KNOW the messages coming through are always aligned with your best in mind. The cards are traced by some occult writers to ancient Egypt or the Kabbalah but there is no documented evidence of such origins or of the usage of tarot for divination before the 18th century.
What is the main purpose/intention behind using tarot?
Tarot acts as a tool that helps reflect your current energy and provides intuitive guidance for the clarity you’re seeking. You can use the tool to connect to your Higher Self/spirit guides.
How do you know what kind of energy you bring if you are doing the reading? Does negative energy effect your reading?
I wouldn’t recommend a reading when your emotions are running wild. You want to come from a place of peacefulness when conducting your reading. Wait until the initial emotional surge passes before doing a reading on that particular subject.
How do you keep positive energy around your cards?
Do not let others handle your tarot/oracle cards because they can leave traces of their energy on the cards. Try burning dried sage and letting the smoke clear away the energy of the cards if you feel they’ve picked up some funk.
Do you start with asking your guides to show you the cards?
I always say a little prayer before I begin asking my Higher Self to come forward to share the divine guidance I most need in that moment.
What happens if I draw the same card multiple times in a row?
Pay attention! The Universe is sending a CLEAR message by showing you again.
I hope by uncovering some of the untold truths about tarot that you’re able to let go of any hangups you have and make a deep and lasting connection with your spirit and guides.
Join my Facebook page here for a free weekly reading. If you’re looking to dive in deeper and would like a private 1:1 reading where we can uncover limiting blocks, discover your soul purpose, connect with past loved ones and spirit guides or even dig into past lives – you can book with me by heading over to brittneycarmichael.com/tarot.
About Brittney Carmichael
Brittney Carmichael is the founder of Shine School, an online course to help women return to radical self-love and SHINE from the inside, spiritual teacher, motivational speaker, psychic medium, beauty guru, master hairstylist with over a decade experience, and self-love & biz mentor. She is known for her spiritual truth-tellin’ style and her ability to make women beautiful – inside & out. Brit teaches women how to SHINE from the inside by breaking free of negative beliefs, letting go of limiting labels, and tapping into creative power so that they can start living the life of their dreams.