Knowing how to start a reading can be a struggle but you'll have to figure out what works best for you. You may want to start with the numerical theme to understand the overall vibration of the reading. Or for yes/no, simply get the answer and then look at the individual cards. Another way is to put the card meanings together into a cause-effect storyline.
Let's look at a few ways to begin the reading using the reading above from a student's practical exam.
#1: Suits & Numbers
When you're a novice with reading cards or you're really stumped, it can be helpful to go back to the basics: suits and numbers. That's really all we're dealing with in playing cards. We can also look at the suits in terms of their color - red or black.
In general, red cards signify a positive outcome while black cards signal a challenging outcome. In our reading, we see two red cards and one black one. This shows there may be a positive outcome but there will be a significant obstacle. Spades are more difficult cards than Clubs so that's how we know there will be a significant obstacle.
The numbers hold a key to understanding the reading as well. Aces represent beginnings and potential, nines are about completion, and tens represent starting over on a new level of experience. Since our reading ends with a 10, we can see that the business will at least be able to start over on a new level of experience.
I find that most people ask yes/no questions. If this is the case, you can simply begin with answering the question. This will help you put each card into perspective. There are two ways to do this. The first is looking at the predominance of color. In general, more red cards is an affirmative (YES) answer and more black cards leads to a negative (NO) answer. Based on this technique, the answer is yes.
We can also get a more specific answer by using the suit combination of the last two cards in the reading. The combination of Spades-Diamonds is maybe, but it will cost you. Why the change from yes to maybe? The Spades card in the middle of the reading changes the flow of energy. That's why I always like to do the specific yes/no with the suit combinations because you can see the influence of the suits, not just the colors.
#3: Face Cards
Sometimes starting with the face cards gives you a good sense of the people involved in the question and how they are affecting the seeker and the outcome. Look at the position where the face card lands. Here are some general guidelines.
In the first position, the face card is someone the seeker already knows and this person is prompting the question in some way. For example, face cards here may show the question is about an ex-husband that is making them crazy. Or it may represent a supportive friend who wants them to get a promotion at work.
In the second position, face cards often represent people who are unknown to the seeker. Or they may represent a role that is hidden or surprising. For example, the "other" woman may show up in this position. In the reading above, we see a Jack of Spades (a troublemaker) in this position. The seeker may know this troublemaker but they may not be aware of just how much trouble this person is making for them.
In the final position, face cards often show who is controlling the outcome or they can signify a final role that the seeker will play.
#4: Numerical Theme
Finding the numerical theme is usually something I do at the end of the reading because I don't use it as a predictive tool but it may be helpful to determine at the beginning of the reading too. The numerical theme helps you understand the seeker's current vibration - what they are attracting into their life and why. In our reading, we have a 9 numerical theme:
Nine questions are often about starting something new but the nine theme shows they aren't ready to begin again. There is unfinished business or a block somewhere. Look at the spades cards in the reading for what needs to be accepted and transformed.
There is a Spades card in this reading, in the form of a troublemaker. I would ask the seeker if she is familiar with this troublemaker who may be an employee or someone who is causing her worries or problems related to her business.
#5: Story Method
String the keywords for the cards together to tell a story. I like to put the keywords together like a mathematical equation to show the cause-effect storyline.
forgiveness + troublemaker = feeling wealthy
Perhaps this means that the seeker will feel wealthy once a troublemaker is forgiven.
If you're using Over the Moon Oracle cards you can look at the visual story. Compare and contrast the cards to notice patterns. What I see is that there is something being received in the first card. Something has been stolen in the second card and it looks like the thief is getting away with it. But in the final card, it looks like the loot is returned and all is well. If you simply say this to the seeker, often they will say, "Yes, that's exactly what's going on."
These are five different ways to begin your reading. Just pick one method at a time. Don't try to start with all of them. I use different methods for different readings. If the suits and numbers seem confusing, I'll pick another method until I can make sense of it. The answers are always right there in the cards!
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