Why figuring out dates and times is so difficult in Tarot readings

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Welcome to the Summer Solistice (Lithna) edition of the Tarot Blog Hop.

Part of our prompt for this Tarot Blog Hop was the following question: Does anyone really know what time it is?

To which I have to say--of course, Golden Dawn has very specific instructions on how to tell time in Tarot readings. Each and every card has a time period assigned to it, and there are positions in the official Order spreads for those pesky time cards to show up and tell us exactly when things are going to happen.

Of course, you have to know how to fill out the chart. . . 

I mean--how hard could it be to fill out a chart?
Each one of those blank sections in the chart is a Tarot card, arranged around the calendar year. The thirty-six decans cards go in the outer ring (each one assigned to ten degrees of the zodiac--about a ten day period), then the four aces, the court cards, the trumps--all of it goes into the chart.

And you know what you get when you fill out the chart?

Yes, that is right--a chart with a lot of neatly defined time periods (please ignore the sloppiness of the cards assigned to the planets--the official teachings are held up in committee) that is mostly useless if you expect more information than just a deck of cards teasing you with the promise of an answer.

 So given the thoroughness of  the method, why is it so hard to figure out "time" in a Tarot reading (even if one is doing a reading in full temple armed with the whole shebang of Adept weapons of the art)?

My current answer (bearing in mind that I reserve the right to change my mind) is that by using  randomization (the shuffling of cards, the laying of them out in a "random" pattern), we are opening the door to quantum influences and the rules that govern the quantum world.

The primary rule of the quantum world is: You can't know everything.

The classic example of this is the study of sub-atomic particles. For instance, you have a choice--you can either know a particle's exact position, or you can know its exact speed--but you can't know both. You have to decide which of the two answers you want to have--because you can only have one of them, not both.

The same seems true of the Tarot. Or at least, that is what my experience of the Tarot is like.

"What is going to happen?"

You shuffle, you read, you tell a good story.

"When is it going to happen?"

Arghh--the cards choose not to tell us because you didn't ask that. You got the answer to the question you asked. No sneaking, trying to get perfect information--bad human--says the cards.

(And just so we are clear--my cards HATE follow-up questions. "We answered your question--Now go away!")

Of course, part of the problem is the fact that we are only using seventy-eight bits of data, and restricted to using one symbol per position. It is kinda like trying to write a novel while only being allowed to use any particular letter only once.

"Hmmm, what if every card in this spread was supposed to be the Eight of Cups?"

Think about it. What if a single card is the answer to more than one position in a spread? How would you figure that out? Which cards are reflections of other cards? Do they substitute well? And what type of thing/concept is the card representing?

"Person? Place? Time? Event? Object? Subject? All of these? Some of these? None of these?"

Let's assume that the cards automatically fall into the "most correct spot" in a spread. And pick the right "type" of thing to be. Plus you are a genius who can automatically figure this out. Even so, if we are operating in a quantum ruled universe, there is going to be a metric ton of uncertainty about the issue at hand. We can't know everything--to be certain about one piece of data is to be uncertain about other things.

Or maybe that is just me.

My example of "timing misreads" involves the boatload of readings that predicting the path of my future business. The time always seemed to be "soon." And none of them came true. I racked it up to Wishful Thinking. Guess what? Recently, readings (some of them twenty-five years old) have started to manifest. Turns out "soon" was "as soon as you get on meds and act like a rational human being."

Thanks for reading. And if you would like to read what other bloggers wrote about this subject, feel free to follow the links below. 

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  1. My head hurts. Thank you. :D But yes to the last it about getting our shit together and THEN the manifesting starts coming on like cannons.

  2. "why is it so hard to figure out "time" in a Tarot reading (even if one is doing a reading in full temple armed with the whole shebang of Adept weapons of the art)?" LOL!!!

    Well, I like doing timing, and I can fill out that whole wheel easily, and I guess I like throwing darts at those pesky protons!

  3. "As soon as you get on meds and start acting like a rational human being..." LOL! My cards tend a bit toward snark at times, too, and yet their snark, when it comes out, is almost always right on point.

  4. Ooo! "What if every card in this spread was supposed to be the Eight of Cups?" Great question! Ever since I started to accumulate tarot decks I've been wondering how to use them all. Well, you just gave me the idea of how to use ten decks in one reading--or at least a deck per position in whatever spread you're using. Use a different deck for each position and maybe they will all come up as 8 of Cups! In fact, I've inadvertently done this with my tarot meetup group by doing group readings where everyone adds to the spread from their own deck. But I hadn't thought of doing it myself at home until reading your post.


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