How To Read Tarot With Playing Cards

How To Read Tarot With Playing Cards

So you want to learn how to read tarot, but you don’t have a deck of tarot cards on hand? Don’t worry, because I’m here to tell you that you can actually use regular playing cards to tap into your intuitive powers and gain insights into your life and future. In this article, I will show you step-by-step how to read tarot with playing cards. Yes, those same cards you use for poker nights or solitaire can become powerful tools for divination and self-reflection. It’s a fun and accessible way to connect with your inner wisdom and unlock the secrets of the universe. So grab your deck of playing cards, get comfortable, and let’s dive into the magical world of tarot reading with playing cards!

In this article, I will explain the meanings behind each playing card and how to interpret them in a tarot reading. You will learn how to create your own tarot spread using playing cards and understand the symbolism behind each suit and number. Additionally, I will guide you through the process of connecting with your intuition and tapping into your psychic abilities to deliver accurate and insightful readings. Whether you are a beginner or have some experience with tarot, this article will provide you with the knowledge and tools to read tarot with playing cards confidently. So get ready to expand your spiritual practice and uncover the wisdom that lies within the colorful world of playing cards!

How To Read Tarot With Playing Cards

Choosing the Right Deck of Playing Cards

Before diving into the world of tarot reading with playing cards, it is important to choose the right deck. While there are countless options available, finding a deck that resonates with you is crucial for intuitive readings. Some popular choices include the Rider-Waite deck, the Marseille deck, and the Golden Thread Tarot deck. Explore different decks and select one that captures your attention and speaks to your intuition.

Understand the Basic Principles of Tarot Reading

Connecting with the Cards

To effectively read tarot cards, it is essential to establish a personal connection with each card in the deck. Spend time holding and examining each card, paying attention to the imagery, colors, and symbolism. Allow yourself to feel the energy and emotions that each card evokes, fostering a deep connection with the deck.

Interpreting Symbols and Numbers

Every tarot card is rich in symbolism and contains numbers that hold significant meaning. Take the time to study and understand the symbols and numbers associated with each card. Symbolism can vary between different decks, so familiarize yourself with the specific symbols employed in your chosen deck. By understanding the symbols and numbers, you will be able to interpret the cards more accurately.

Assigning Tarot Meanings to Playing Cards

In traditional tarot reading, specific meanings are assigned to each card. However, when using playing cards for tarot readings, it is necessary to adapt and assign tarot meanings to the playing cards. This process involves associating the playing cards with their corresponding tarot cards and understanding the interpretation of each playing card in a tarot context. Take the time to research and create your own list of tarot meanings for playing cards, or refer to established resources for guidance.

Mastering the Four Suits

Hearts: Emotions and Relationships

The Hearts suit represents matters of the heart, including emotions, love, relationships, and intuition. When interpreting the Hearts suit in a tarot reading, pay attention to the emotional aspects and the connections between individuals.

Diamonds: Material and Financial Matters

The Diamonds suit is associated with material possessions, finances, and practical matters. When interpreting the Diamonds suit, focus on money-related issues, career prospects, and the physical aspects of life.

Clubs: Action and Challenges

The Clubs suit signifies action, challenges, and personal growth. It represents the pursuit of goals, taking action, and overcoming obstacles. In tarot readings, the Clubs suit indicates areas where action and determination are required.

Spades: Intellect and Communication

The Spades suit embodies intellect, communication, and analytical thinking. It represents mental processes, language, and the power of words. This suit highlights the importance of clear and effective communication in various aspects of life.

Exploring the Court Cards

Kings: Authority and Leadership

The Kings represent authority, leadership, and mastery. They symbolize individuals who possess strong leadership qualities and command respect. When a King appears in a tarot reading, it signifies the need for confidence, assertiveness, and taking charge of situations.

Queens: Intuition and Nurturing

Queens are associated with intuition, nurturing, and emotional intelligence. They embody qualities of compassion, empathy, and sensitivity. The appearance of a Queen in a tarot reading suggests the need for self-care, emotional support, and trusting one’s intuition.

Knights: Action and Energy

Knights represent action, energy, and movement forward. They symbolize individuals who are proactive, ambitious, and ready to face challenges. When a Knight appears in a tarot reading, it signifies the need for taking decisive action and pursuing one’s goals with enthusiasm.

Pages: Learning and Messages

Pages signify learning, curiosity, and messages. They represent individuals who are eager to learn and share knowledge. When a Page appears in a tarot reading, it suggests the need for exploration, study, and being open to new information or ideas.

How To Read Tarot With Playing Cards

Understanding the Major Arcana Cards

The Major Arcana cards are a set of 22 cards in a tarot deck that hold significant spiritual and transformative meaning. Understanding these cards is crucial for in-depth readings and uncovering profound insights.

The Fool: New Beginnings and Infinite Possibilities

The Fool represents new beginnings, innocence, and embracing the unknown. It signifies stepping into uncharted territories and embracing opportunities with a sense of wonder and openness.

The Empress: Fertility and Abundance

The Empress embodies fertility, abundance, and nurturing. It symbolizes the power of creation, growth, and the nurturing aspects of life. When the Empress appears in a tarot reading, it suggests a flourishing period of creativity and abundance.

The Emperor: Authority and Structure

The Emperor represents authority, structure, and stability. It symbolizes leadership, organization, and the establishment of order. When the Emperor appears in a tarot reading, it suggests the need for discipline, responsibility, and setting clear boundaries.

The Hermit: Reflection and Solitude

The Hermit embodies reflection, introspection, and solitude. It symbolizes the need for self-reflection, inner wisdom, and seeking answers within. When the Hermit appears in a tarot reading, it suggests the importance of taking time for oneself and finding solace in solitude.

Performing Tarot Spreads with Playing Cards

Tarot readings often involve laying out cards in specific patterns or spreads to gain insight into various aspects of life. While tarot spreads are typically associated with tarot-specific cards, they can also be performed using playing cards. Here are some common tarot spreads that can be adapted for playing cards:

One-Card Readings: Quick Insights

A one-card reading involves pulling a single card to gain immediate insight or guidance. Shuffle the deck while focusing on your question or intention, then draw a single card. The card you draw will provide a concise answer or guidance related to your query.

Three-Card Spreads: Past, Present, and Future

The three-card spread is a simple yet powerful spread that offers insights into the past, present, and future. Shuffle the deck while concentrating on the areas of your life you wish to explore, then lay out three cards in a row. The first card represents the past, the second card represents the present, and the third card represents the future.

Celtic Cross Spread: In-Depth Analysis

The Celtic Cross spread is a more complex spread that provides an in-depth analysis of a situation or question. Shuffle the deck while focusing on your question, then lay out ten cards in a specific pattern, with each card representing different aspects of the situation. Interpret each card’s meaning and their positions within the spread to gain a comprehensive understanding.

Developing Intuition and Trusting Your Interpretations

Tarot reading is an art that requires developing and trusting your intuition. As you practice reading tarot with playing cards, pay attention to your intuitive responses and gut feelings when interpreting the cards. Over time, you will develop a stronger connection with your intuition, allowing for more accurate and insightful readings.

Keeping a Tarot Journal

Keeping a tarot journal is a valuable practice for recording your readings and tracking your progress. It allows you to reflect on past readings, note any patterns or recurring themes, and observe your growth as a tarot reader. Take note of the cards pulled, the spreads used, and your interpretations, along with any insights or personal reflections.

Recording Daily Readings

Make it a habit to record your daily tarot readings in your journal. Write down the cards you drew, the question or intention you had, and any notable insights or reflections that arise during the reading. This practice helps you build a personal database of readings and provides a resource for future reference.

Tracking Patterns and Progress

Reviewing your tarot journal regularly allows you to identify patterns and track your progress as a reader. Look for recurring themes, symbols, or messages in your readings. By observing your progress, you can gain a deeper understanding of your strengths, areas for improvement, and the evolving nature of your readings.

Enhancing Your Tarot Practice with Rituals

Rituals can be incorporated into your tarot practice to enhance the energetic connection with the cards and create a sacred space for readings.

Cleansing and Blessing Your Deck

Before conducting a tarot reading, it is beneficial to cleanse and bless your deck to remove any lingering energies and reset the cards’ vibrations. You can cleanse your deck by smudging it with sage or palo santo, visualizing white light enveloping the cards, or placing them in moonlight. Bless your deck by holding it in your hands and setting an intention for clear and insightful readings.

Creating a Sacred Space

Creating a sacred space for your tarot readings helps establish a focused and peaceful environment. Choose a quiet and comfortable area where you can perform your readings without distractions. Consider lighting candles, burning incense, or playing soothing music to enhance the ambiance and create a space conducive to deep introspections.

Setting Intentions

Before each reading, set clear intentions for the guidance and insights you wish to receive. Take a moment to connect with your intuition and align your energy with the cards. By setting intentions, you create a purposeful and meaningful reading that aligns with your specific needs and desires.

Ethics in Tarot Reading

Ethics play a vital role in tarot reading, ensuring that the practice is conducted responsibly and with respect for both the cards and the individuals involved.

Respecting Client Confidentiality

When reading tarot for others, it is crucial to uphold client confidentiality. Respect the personal nature of the information shared during a reading and maintain strict confidentiality. Clients must feel comfortable opening up during a session, knowing that their privacy will be respected.

Providing Objective Interpretations

Tarot readers should strive to provide objective interpretations without imposing personal biases or judgments. Remain impartial during the reading and present the information as it comes through the cards. Avoid projecting personal beliefs onto the interpretation, allowing the cards to speak for themselves.

Seeking Professional Training

To deepen your understanding of tarot reading and enhance your skills, consider seeking professional training or certification. Professional training provides guidance on interpreting the cards, ethical practices, and working with clients. Training programs also offer opportunities for mentorship and support from experienced tarot readers.

Common Tarot Card Combinations

Certain combinations of tarot cards carry deep significance and convey powerful messages in a reading. Although tarot-specific cards are typically associated with these combinations, they can also be adapted for playing card readings. Here are a few examples:

The Lovers + The Devil: Passionate Temptations

The combination of The Lovers card with The Devil card suggests intense passion, desire, and temptation. It signifies powerful attractions or attachments that may have both positive and negative aspects. When these cards appear together, it is essential to be mindful of the potential consequences of indulging in one’s desires.

The Sun + The World: Success and Fulfillment

The combination of The Sun card with The World card represents a culmination of achievements, success, and fulfillment. It signifies a period of joy, abundance, and accomplishment. When these cards appear together, it indicates that you are on the right path and are experiencing a harmonious phase in your life.

Practicing Tarot Reading with Others

As you gain confidence and proficiency in reading tarot, you may consider offering readings to friends and family or joining tarot study groups to further enhance your skills.

Offering Readings to Friends and Family

Offering tarot readings to friends and family allows you to practice your skills and receive valuable feedback. It also provides an opportunity to deepen your connection with loved ones and offer them guidance and support. Approach these readings with openness and genuine care for the individuals seeking your insights.

Joining Tarot Study Groups

Joining tarot study groups or communities allows you to connect with like-minded individuals and learn from experienced readers. Engage in discussions, share insights, seek guidance, and participate in group readings. These interactions can broaden your perspective, deepen your understanding of tarot, and offer a supportive community for your tarot journey.


Learning to read tarot with playing cards is a fascinating journey of self-discovery, intuition, and spiritual growth. By choosing the right deck, understanding the principles of tarot reading, and mastering the various aspects of card interpretation, you can unlock the profound wisdom and insights that tarot offers. With practice, patience, and trust in your intuition, you can develop your tarot reading skills and embark on a transformative journey of self-exploration and guidance. So, pick up a deck of playing cards and embark on your tarot reading adventure today. Happy reading!