December 19th, 2006

Cool Mai

How to Ask Tarot Questions – Part 2


Or "who do you wish not to read for"… This "who" question is the roadblock for many readers. People sometimes feel that they cannot read for themselves or those that they have close knowledge about. Objectivity is key to developing an accurate sense of intuition and applying it to the tarot. An indicator of accurate intuition is a lack of emotion. Impressions are clear and completely unemotional. When you read for yourself or somebody with an energy connection to you, the accuracy of intuition can be compromised because of interference of emotions and desires of "what should be". Detachment is essential to accomplish an accurate evaluation. Nothing causes more interference than the need to be "right" or to prove that you can do an intuitive evaluation. Detach from worries about the message or the messenger. Detach from the person’s fears or your own. Detach, detach, detach. Accurate information will flow when detachment is a practiced part of tarot reading. With practice you will be able to read for anybody, including yourself.


You can ask anything when consultation of the card. You can ask why, what, how , when, and where about any issue, decision, or aspect of your inner or external life – past, present, and/or future. Your questions may be specific or general. The tarot can respond to whether you should, can, will, or are.

The "what" of the question is perhaps the most important part of the question. There are some general rules that I follow and bend when necessary. Below are six steps to doing the "what".

1. Ask one question at a time
2. Define a time frame
3. Establish who the question if for
4. Formulate the question
5. Apply personal ethics to the question
6. Pick a spread that matches the question

These guidelines are given more detail below:

1. Ask one question at a time

Several questions asked will lead to several questions answered. The answers can and will show up in the same spread, and it is up to the reader to sort them out. An analogy is asking two questions to a group and having the two answers scribbled on a blackboard at the same time. The words overlap and may obstruct each other. This can be very confusing.

2. Define a time frame

The lack of a timeframe opens the answer up to occurring at potentially any time. A person may ask "will I find a new job?" If a time frame of "in the near future" is not stated, the job shown in the reading maybe years in the future.

3. Establish who the question is for

This is the cousin to the several question rule. If the person or persons are not clearly defined for the question, multiple answers may overlap. For example, a person asks "what will happen in the relationship?" The answer to this question may show the impact of the relationship on the person, their spouse, their children, the grandparents, the family dog, and so on. A more specific question of "what will happen to me in the relationship?" will yield more direct answers.

4. Formulate the question

More often than not people ask about love, money and health. The tarot can answer these questions and many more. Most questions are easily formulated by following the guidelines of asking one question, choosing the person for whom the question applies, and the time frame. Establish these guides to the question and you will find that the question forms itself.

5. Apply personal ethics to the question

This is an area of divination that is not often explored. An effective, but not ethically directed, tarot reading can be the equivalent of a psychic peeping tom. I have no set rules to offer here. However, I do advise the reader to be comfortable with the question being asked. Stop a reading if the querent wishes to know something that is not ethical for you.

6. Pick a spread that matches the question

Picking the right spread for a question can be a matter of experience, but there are some guidelines I can share. Questions are structured in the tarot through a spread, or layout. This is a symbolic pattern of positions, each with a given meaning. A card-symbol is selected for each of these positions and interpreted in relation to the assigned meaning of the position.

Individual spreads lend themselves to different questions. Below is a chart with suggest spreads for different readings:

Quick Answer -- 1 or 3 cards
"Probable Outcome" -- Celtic Cross
"What is going on" -- Zodiac/Wheel
Choices -- Choice or English
Frylock Side

Society and Awareness

Several months ago I posted a series of articles about living with awareness. Each had a different topic. A recent blog I posted sparked a discussion about Society. Below are my previous thoughts on Society and Awareness.

Being unaware is to be mechanical and programmed by society. People tend to go through life with fixed ideas that can be manipulated like robots with buttons. When you are in awareness you observe the buttons and turn them off. While you are in awareness dislikes may not go away, but the automatic reactions do. You are a slave to these things when we are not aware of them.

People across the world have crazy notions based on their society and tribal norms. Each culture has its norms that are outside of the global understanding. Are individuals to blame? No. They are operating on a cultural or private prejudice. An ideology is a prejudice also. No reality fits into an ideology. Life is beyond it. We all look for the meaning of life, but life has no formulas or set meanings. Meaning can only be found when we look beyond meaning.

Adoration is the product of ideology. Religion thrives on adoration. Beware (be aware) of religion. Doubt is the product of reality. Doubt is the product of awareness. If adoration is equated with love, and adoration with the highest forms of ideology, those that you consider terrorists are the most loving people you know. When we see someone as a terrorist we can say "They are attached to a selfish idea that is destructive." This is very insightful. Now consider what was said before:

I am an ass, you are an ass

You and I are all terrorists in our own selfishness born out of survival and the need to feel good. Terrorists have something else in common. They have approval, appreciation, and attention in their society. Appreciation and attention are an addictive drug given to us when we are very young. As a sideline into child psychology consider that a healthy child is interested in things. An unhealthy child is interested in persons. Interest in people and groups of people (family, tribe) is a sign of attachment. Interest in things is a sign that attachment does not grip us and you are free to explore the world. Nonattachment to the society and tribe is part of awareness.

Society will not like you exploring the role of attachment. Society uses it to control you. Society will be very unhappy. Turn back now while you can!
Shaman - Horse

Selfishness and Self-Image

A recent blog caused a dialog about the nature of mankind. Are we another animal or are we more? A common touchstone was the selfishness of man. In a previous article I listed the following guidelines for dealing with the selfishness of others.

Expect the worst – you are dealing with selfish people
Remember people are as bad as you

If we remember this you will:

Never be disillusioned
Never disappointed
Never "let down"
Never feel rejected

Congratulations, you are becoming aware now. Where does this leave the aware person? You can now:

Expect yourself and others to be selfish
See your own self-interest - refined or course.

Here is an important memory device if you are feeling stressed out by the actions of others and you forget the rules of selfishness:

I am an ass, you are an ass, so where’s the problem?
I post this to show that I am not a "everything is light and love" type guy. These rules were stated in an article about people thinking they are doing good, being generous, and yet they are being selfish. This is the "positive" side of selfishness. There are others sides. My recent blog responses showcased the "negative" side of selfishness. This brought some thoughts to my mind. In psychology there is the theory of projection. In projection, those things that we like the least about ourselves become those things that we take issue in others. The person who is a gossip also notices others who gossip. The person who is vain cannot help but notice those who are also vain. Our experience, good bad or ugly, directs our observations. NOTE: This is true for the good and bad (positive and challenged?) aspects of ourselves.

A question... if the selfishness of man can be seen in a good or bad light, what does this say about those who see man as merely an animal, victim to the selfish physical and emotional needs? While this may be a "realistic" stance, does too much of a focus on this side of man inform the individual of where they own self-image is? Is there not something more to aspire to? Can we rise to any "spiritual" state while we focus on the shortcomings of our life situations? Food for thought...