Astrology was my first love. Or one of my many first loves.
Tarot was maybe a second or third. It doesn’t have the magnetism or complexity for me that astrology offers — but I decided to learn it anyways a few months ago (at the September eclipses in my 3rd and 9th houses).
For one, how could I call myself an astrologer without knowing the tarot? It almost feels unheard of to meet an astrologer who doesn’t do both nowadays. And the two actually complement each other quite well, and can be very useful when giving someone a reading for even something you yourself can’t decipher. It also helps to narrow the focus on my weekly horoscopes, so that instead of wandering from aspect to aspect, I can bring it all together more easily with one coherent theme.
And second, learning the tarot is so much easier once you know astrology. In astrology, not only do you have to know the meanings of each of the planets, but you also have to know the meanings of each of the signs, and each of the aspects between all of them. On top of that, there are hundreds of other advanced astrological charts (synastry, mundane astrology, predictive astrology, progressions, horary and electional, etc.) that all require different techniques for interpretation.
Tarot, on the other hand, really only requires a knowledge of two things: the meanings of the cards (upright and reversed), and the placements in which you have put them. Granted, there are 78 cards in the entire tarot deck, but I feel much more comfortable with them having trained my mind to think astrologically, and to make unlikely connections between a variety of unusual combinations and situations.
That’s why I am extra delighted when I find a way to combine the two. I think together they provide a more accurate picture of your life, what’s happening now, what will happen, and what you need to learn at this time (though they can’t answer everything — that’s where God steps in).
As a result, I’ve included two tarot spreads below based on astrological concepts. I have found most of these from other sources throughout my research, but have made one or two minor tweaks.
The first one is a great option to do at the beginning of every year. While it is a little “light” on the astrology part (since it really doesn’t include any knowledge of astrology), it does include 12 cards, one for each month of the year, which is reminiscent of the 12 signs of the zodiac.
Start with drawing a card in position number 1. That will be your main theme for the entire new year — the big issue or lesson in your life that you are either working on mastering or overcoming. Then draw a card for each month of the year. Each of those cards will tell you what the main theme of that month will be, and other events that you can expect to occur.
The last card, position 14, is meant to explain the outcome of the year, and make it more clear to you how each of the cards you drew beforehand will come together as one in the end. It can also explain what kind of feeling you will have come December as the year closes.
I did not include this in the spread, but you may also want to draw an extra card — an advice card — if you feel the year will be extra challenging for you or need more guidance. I have started to get into the habit of drawing an advice card in all of my readings. It helps to let me know if I am currently on the right path in my life, and if not, how to get there.
You can also draw extra cards if you need to clarify one month in particular. For example, the month of October 2017 in a reading I did for myself seems particularly curious. I drew some extra cards to help me explain that time.
If you draw extra cards, though, you must do two things before you draw them — define what each of the cards will mean (past, future, lesson, person a or b, etc.) and determine how many you will draw. I sometimes make these mistakes, especially in a very emotionally-charged reading, and end up not getting any coherent message.
If you don’t determine these things beforehand, it makes it easy to manipulate the meanings of the cards into something you want them to be, rather than what they actually are.
The next tarot spread is the same one as above, with some slight adjustments — and a more solid footing in astrology. Instead of drawing one card for each month of the year, draw one card for each astrological house. This may require some previous knowledge of astrology, but I have tried to simplify it in the graphic below for those who aren’t familiar with it.
Because each of the cards now represent aspects of our lives, instead of months in the year, the reading can be done for an entire year (the things that will play out or that you will need to learn in each area of your life for all of 2017) or only for one moment in time.
Just make sure you clarify your intent to yourself before you start to draw any of the cards.
Once all of the cards for the houses have been drawn, draw card 13 which encompasses all the cards and explains in more detail the lesson you need to learn when you look at all of them together as a whole. Card 14 gives you advice on how to reach that growth or to expand and learn in that area.
For more information on what each of the houses symbolize, I have included a quick cheat sheet below.
1. Your identity, everything about you and who you are, can also encompass many of the other cards. Can also indicate body or health.
2. Your gifts and talents, the things you think are worthy in yourself. Confidence. Personal and material possessions. The things you own. Money you earn.
3. Communication and people close to home. How you communicate about and with things or people that are familiar to you. Lower education (kindergarten through 12th grade). Your neighborhood.
4. Home and family. What your childhood was like. The foundations of your life. Things that if they were to fall down or disintegrate would be deeply unsettling. Your actual house or place where you live. Parents.
5. Your happiness. What makes you feel free and find joy. Also, children, especially the ones that are your own, and pregnancy. Dating and casual romantic relationships are also ruled by this house.
6. Your daily routines and schedule. Work. The things that cross your desk every day. Your body. Use this house in combination with the 1st house to look for health issues.
7. Your one-on-one partnerships with other people. Marriage. Your marriage partner or spouse. Also, business relationships. Anything that requires you to sign a contract with another person or entity. Open enemies, people that don’t like you and thwart your progress.
8. Endings and beginnings, birth and death. Sex. Money and debt. Anything that requires you to deeply entangle your life with something or someone. Use this house in combination with the 1st and 6th for life-threatening health issues. Use this house in connection with the 5th and 7th (and maybe 1st) for pregnancy or marriage. Use this house in combination with the 4th for buying or selling a home.
9. Religion and spirituality. Higher education (college and grad school). Travel and pen-pals. Study or learning new skills. Use this house in combination with the 4th for a move far from home.
10. Your career. The way other people see you. Social status. Can also indicate marriage on some occasions. For marriage, also look at your 5th, 7th and 8th houses. For a career change, use this house in combination with your 6th and 11th (and maybe 2nd) houses.
11. Your hopes and dreams for the future. Your aspirations about your life and career. The groups of people you associate with daily. Friends, groups you are a part of. Socializing with others.
12. Being alone. Your spirituality. The way you feel about yourself inside. Your blind spots. Things you either don’t know about yourself that are true, or that you are afraid to share with other people. Hospitals and prisons. Mental health. For divorce, use this house in combination with your 7th and 10th (and maybe 11th).
For more on the houses, check out wikipedia here.
For more on the meanings of the tarot cards, check out one of my favorite resources here.