If you’ve ever heard tarot readers talk about “interviewing a tarot deck” and wondered what it means to interview your tarot cards, read on and we’ll cover the ins and outs of this important step in getting to know a new tarot deck:
What does it mean to “interview tarot cards”?
While it might seem counterintuitive that two seemingly-identical tarot decks from the same publisher would be identical, the reality is that no two tarot decks are the same. Every deck of tarot cards has its own unique personality and quirks. Even two matching tarot decks from the same tarot artist can perform in surprisingly different (and consistently different) ways.
Some tarot decks are very deep and thought provoking. Others can feel sassy or even snarky at times.
Some tarot decks are very deep and thought provoking. Others can feel sassy or even snarky at times. Many decks can have a romantic vibe to them. Still others can behave superficially, or seem too “dark” or sometimes even depressing.
In some cases, a new tarot deck may seem to have its own “mission”, to reveal very specific truths to the reader — sometimes about very specific subjects.
In some cases, a new tarot deck may seem to have its own “mission”, to reveal very specific truths to the reader — sometimes about very specific subjects. Other decks may feel more “general purpose” — capable of answering a wide variety of questions. Some tarot card decks lean towards love, romance and dating. Others lean towards personal insight, while still others may seem “obsessed” with work, family-disputes, politics or interpersonal dynamics.
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These unique “personality” traits can be difficult to pinpoint at first, and in many cases the only way to truly understand a new deck of tarot cards is to work with it for a few days. Each deck tends to reveal itself to its reader at its own pace, allowing its secrets to be unlocked over time. Regardless of how long it takes a deck to “open up”, a good first-step in getting to know a new deck is to do what tarot experts call “interviewing the cards”.
So what does “interviewing the cards” mean?
Interviewing tarot cards involves a special tarot spread which reveals the core personality attributes of the tarot deck itself. By interviewing your deck you can get early insights into the way a deck will perform in future readings, and you might even uncover some quirks along the way. In some cases, you may reveal which types of questions a deck is best suited for — or you may reveal an inner “ambition” burning within a specific deck of cards.
By interviewing your deck you can get early insights into the way a deck will perform in future readings
For example, some decks of tarot cards may seem especially well-suited for questions about dating, romantic relationships, dealing with break-ups and questions of the heart. Other tarot decks may be perfect for day-to-day issues, questions and minor issues. Still others, may seem to resonate with grand, life-issues and philosophical questions.
What is an interview tarot spread?
There are many different variations of interview tarot spreads, and there’s no single “correct” way to interview your deck. In general terms, any interview tarot spread should concentrate on the tarot deck itself. Some interview spreads however, also give insight into the energy that exists (or will exist) between that particular deck and the reader conducting the interview.
In other words: When you interview your tarot cards, you’re not just getting to know the tarot deck, you’re also getting to know the special energy that exists between the tarot reader and the deck.
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Do you have to interview a new deck of tarot cards?
Short answer: No. Many tarot readers prefer to discover the “personality” of a new tarot deck slowly, over time — allowing the quirks and idiosyncrasies of the cards to reveal themselves naturally, over the course of dozens of readings. Interviewing tarot cards is a great way to get to know your new tarot deck, but there’s no rule that says it’s something you have to do.
Questions to ask your tarot cards
Below are three different tarot spreads for interviewing your tarot cards. The spreads range from a simple 3-card tarot interview spread, to a complex 12-card interview tarot spread. If you’re interviewing a new tarot deck that you plan to use for some time, you may want to try the longer, more in-depth interview spreads.
Tarot deck interview spread: 3 Cards
This simple 3-card tarot spread for interviewing a new tarot deck is probably the simplest one there is. While this spread doesn’t go very “deep”, it’s perfect for casual decks that you don’t plan on making into your main or primary tarot deck.
- What are your strengths?
- What are your weaknesses?
- Generally speaking, what will I learn or how will I improve by working together with you?
Tarot deck interview spread: 6 Cards
This is a great 6 card spread which asks for both an “outcome” and whether or not there’s an “overriding message” which the deck wants to share.
NOTE: Many readers regard any minor arcana card in position #5 to represent a “no” answer, but the choice of how to interpret this position is yours.
- If you had to describe this deck with one card, which card would it be?
- What are your strengths?
- How would you describe your general outlook on the Universe?
- What types of readings are most effective with this deck?
- Is there an overriding message, theme or issue which will be important in multiple readings to come?
- What will the outcome of our relationship be?
Tarot deck interview spread: 10 Cards
Below is an in-depth, 10 card spread for interviewing a deck of tarot cards. This spread is recommended if you’re interviewing a deck that you think you’ll be spending a lot of time with, and will become your primary tarot deck for personal readings.
- If you had to describe yourself with one card, what would it be?
- Are you more in-tune with grand life issues or day-to-day issues? (Pay attention to Major Arcana or Minor Arcana cards drawn here)
- How do you see me? What characteristic stands out on our first meeting?
- What is your general outlook on life and the universe? (Look for clues to realism, positivity or negativity here)
- What are your strengths?
- Do you have an overall message for me that will be important in future readings (Consider any Minor Arcana card here to be something of a “No” answer. But court cards may have some significance).
- Is there anything you want from me in this relationship?
- What types of questions are you most proficient at?
- What types of questions do you have difficulty with?
- What will the outcome of our relationship be? Or, what is one possible outcome?
Looking for more amazing tarot spreads? Here’s a complete list of tarot spreads you can try online right now.