Love and money are the two most popular subjects of readings. While it is true that tarot is useful for many other things, such as spiritual development, self-improvement, problem-solving, brainstorming, writing, meditation, and magic, divination continues to be the most common application.
During these challenging economic times, monetary concerns, now more than ever, are at the front of everyone's minds. And, now more than ever, more people are turning to the tarot for answers, for validation, or for comfort. There are plenty of ways to approach questions of money. Usually, when asked questions about money, a reader will focus the reading on the specific area of concern: wanting a job, wanting a new job, wanting to quit a job, handling a large debt, pursuing further education, etc. A reader may do a reading, use brainstorming techniques, or some other nifty application from their toolbox.
Whatever other techniques a reader uses, most do start with or include a reading. Because of the widespread concerns about financial situations, a collection of spreads on those issues might prove useful. I find that using all three together as a series creates a very illuminating profile as well as some great steps and advice for moving forward in a positive manner toward a desirable future, especially if you (or the seeker, if you are reading for someone else) have just lost a job or suffered a reduction in income. The series examines the main issue (such as a lost job), attitudes and approaches to financial concerns in general, and a practical consideration of incoming and outgoing resources. This progression works nicely as it incorporates your main focus or concern while acknowledging that attitude does affect situations, even ones apparently beyond our control, and by giving you practical ways to move toward a more stable future. The series ends with a bit of good old-fashioned fortune-telling.
Mostly we like to believe that we have free will and have quite a bit of control over our lives. While that may be true, it is also true that sometimes things happen that we actually do not have control over, such as the loss of a job or a reduction in income. When these things happen, we do still have control over how we react to them. This spread shows the event in question and what is likely to happen in the future, along with advice on how to react and who to turn to for help or additional guidance.
For this spread, separate the Major Arcana cards, the Minor Arcana, and the Court cards. Deal positions 1 and 4 from the Major Arcana. Deal positions 2 and 5 from the Minor Arcana. Deal positions 3 and 6 from the Court cards. The cards are laid out in a line representing the passage of time and grouped together to show the present and future.
- What is happening or recently happened—the event in question (Major Arcana)
- How you can react (Minor Arcana)
- Who can help (Court card)
- What may happen next (Major Arcana)
- How you can react (Minor Arcana)
- Who can help (Court card)
Money Profile Spread
This spread shows your various attitudes toward money. Humans are complex creatures and our feelings, beliefs, thoughts, and practices can sometimes be in conflict. If you are having money troubles, or simply want to have a different attitude about money, this spread can help. In doing so, you can see what may be in conflict or in sync. You can see if one area stands out from the others and perhaps needs to be brought into alignment for better focus and balance. Use only the court cards, laying them in a square for easy comparison, as follows:
- Emotional attitude. Your feelings about money. Does money represent something other than a way to acquire the things you need? Is it security? Is it power? How does that play into your financial life?
- Intellectual attitude.Your intellectual understanding about money. If emotion and practical need were removed, this is your logical theory about money and finances. How close is it to your practices?
- Practical attitude. How you actually use money in your everyday life. It is how you budget, how you impulse spend (or not), how you plan for the future (or not). How do the other three cards affect this one?
- Spiritual attitude. What you believe about money as well as giving, sharing, and charity. It also shows how you feel about the metaphysical laws of the universe (or lack thereof) regarding money.
- Extra: If you don't think any one (or more) of your attitude cards are useful and you are interested in changing it (or them), go through your deck and find a court card that represents the attitude you'd like to have. Make a plan that will help you transform your present attitude to the desired attitude.
Show Me the Money Spread
This spread focuses on the practical aspects of your budget, including a look at your attitude, which can affect your collection and allocation of resources. As you interpret this spread, compare cards 2, 3, and 4 to card 1. See how your attitude meshes with the suggestions given. Would a change in attitude help make the suggestions easier to implement or is your attitude in good alignment with the suggestions? The cards are laid out with the "attitude" card above the others for easy comparison, as follows:
- Your attitude. Your attitude about money, specifically about your budget. Notice if your attitude is working for or against your goals. If necessary, consider changing your attitude.
- An expense to eliminate.An expense that can be eliminated that will make a useful difference.
- A way to earn more money. A way to increase your earning potential.
- Somewhere to find extra money.A potential source of extra money that is not necessarily earned. It could be by selling something, investing, or some other income stream that you hadn't considered.
- Extra: If you find that your attitude card isn't useful and you are interested in changing it, go through your deck and find a card that represents the attitude you'd like to have. Make a list of three ways you can transform your present attitude to the desired attitude.
Looking for That Opportunity
If you have the space and four tarot decks available, leave out all the spreads for easy comparing and contrasting. Look for repeating cards and themes. Even if you don't have the space or the decks, write them all down and compare them that way (it's just more fun if you can have all the cards laid out). At the end, shuffle a deck (or the deck, if you are using just one). Flip the cards face up one by one until you get to the Ace of Pentacles. I always think that the Ace of Pentacles is a fortuitous card and indicates an opportunity for economic improvement. Then examine the card that came just before the Ace. That card indicates what must happen before the opportunity will present itself. This serves a twofold purpose. First, it gives you something to accomplish to draw the opportunity into your life. Second, it provides a landmark that you can watch for. The opportunities granted by the Aces usually have a small window, so having a landmark lets you be poised and ready to take action and make the most of that beneficial energy.