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At the last meeting of the Tampa Bay Area Tarot Meetup, we talked about tarot spreads. Here are the discussion topics we covered.
You can use these topics and discussion questions, as we did, to discover new tarot techniques and new ways of working with the cards.

Tarot reading techniques include positional spreads, non-positional spreads, custom spreads and dialogues. Spreads can be used for prediction or contemplation. Spreads that include positions for “future” and “outcome” are predictive. However, if you interpret a future position as advice to prepare you for the future, you can use a predictive spread in a contemplative way. Some spreads are designed to be contemplative rather than predictive. Even in a contemplative spread, cards can sometimes be interpreted to include predictive information.

One-Card Spreads: A “One-Card Spread” is simply one card pulled to answer a specific question.

What sorts of questions are appropriate for one-card pulls?

Two-Card Spreads: Two-card spreads are terrific for short readings and certain specific questions. You can also perform a two-card spread within the context of a larger reader. Some great two-card spreads include “Help/Hinder”, “Why You’re In Each Other’s’ Lives”, “Best Case, Worst Case”, “Either/Or”.

What two-card spreads do you use?

Three-Card Spreads: Three-card spreads are traditionally well loved. Some great three-card spreads include “Body Mind Spirit”, “Past, Present, Future”, Relationship, “Morning, Afternoon, Evening”.

What three-card spreads do you use?

General Spreads: A general spread is large enough to give you a basic overall impression of your client. A general spread may include a timeline (past, present, future), or may involve the astrological houses. A general spread is often best performed without an opening question.

What is your go-to general spread?

Specific and Custom Spreads: Some spreads are designed to answer specific types of questions, such as a “self-esteem spread” or a “career path” spread. , Some spreads are designed to be performed as part of a special event, holiday, ceremony or celebration. A spread can be designed for one-time use to handle a particular set of circumstances.

What sort of custom spreads have you designed? What might you try next?

Non-Positional Spreads: Some readers always use a specific number of cards, and may have certain values assigned to each position in terms of the way the cards are read. For instance, a reader may always lay out four cards and read them as a sentence, or lay out a pyramid of nine cards with the top card being the outcome, or lay out five cards with the middle card being the most important.

What are the differences between reading with a positional spread and a non-positional spread?

Tarot Dialogue: You can simply have a conversation with the cards by asking questions and pulling cards in answer. This is a very free-form technique, unique to each reader.

How does tarot dialogue work for you?