Tarot Talk: Predictive Readings and Timing in Tarot

Picture the following situation: you’ve pulled, placed, and interpreted your tarot card spread for a, let’s say, relationship. You see a card indicating some sort of argument on the horizon, pull a few extra cards to understand why this may arise, how to approach it, and what may come of it. And now you’re left with one final question: when does it pop up?

This topic is one that is frequently revisited by readers and clients, and is not likely to be put down as a hot pick of a debate. “Timing with tarot is tricky. Timing with tarot is spot-on. Timing with is impossible.”

Let’s first go over the basics:

  1. The future is not set in stone. Not to be too redundant, as I’ve said it many times before and some of you may be getting tired of this, but your future is changeable. Often readers are predicting the most likely outcomes. Silly example, but if I told you that tomorrow you would go to the grocery store, you could very simply just not go to the grocery store. Free will is yours. Nothing I say will change that, even if I have a deck of cards in my hands.
  2. Sometimes it’s better not to know timing. In my experience, most readings, even future readings, are better off without timing included. They also often add little to the productivity of a reading, save for some exceptions. Regardless, in many situations, it’s harmless to throw in a time frame, so I may do it if one is coming up naturally, but I prefer not to force anything.

The truth is that timing is tricky for the reasons listed above, and I say this to my clients whenever a time frame is included in their reading. The longer the time frame, the more opportunity someone also has to change things, even in small ways. Such is why some readers opt not to do predictive readings, and some claim it’s “impossible” — free will is always a factor, and it’s not always something that can be … well, predicted. Keep this in mind before venturing into predictive readings, and remain open to the fact that you can be wrong. Often. All of that said, to ensure as much accuracy and productivity as possible, here’s a few ways I and other readers tend to read time:

  1. Set the time frame first. Say, “This set of events will happen within a year, a month, a week, etc.” Create the boundaries yourself first rather than being presented with all of these events that could potentially not be linear.
  2. Use a deck that specifies time. Unfortunately, the deck I use for this no longer is available, but if you want to do predictive readings and can get your hands on a deck like the Only Time Will Tell Oracle, I’d highly recommend doing so. If not, make your own! Give yourself a wide range of specific to vague options, and give the deck an option to, quite simply, not give you the time. Like I said, sometimes it’s better not to know.
  3. Use the number of the card. While I myself do not do this, I’ve run into readers that use the number of the card to create a time frame for the given event’s occurrence, and I think it’s a wonderful method. For example, if you pulled the Ace (1) of Cups, then the event could occur in one day, one week, or one month.
  4. Lenormand is your friend. If you’ve been sticking to tarot and want to dip your toe deeper into predictive / “future” readings, you may want to consider picking up a lenormand deck. Tarot is an awesome spiritual tool, represents a wide range of human emotions, events, and stages of life, and wants to assist you in your spiritual growth. For this reason, it tends to want to show you the “why” and “how” more so than the “when” and “what.” Lenormand decks are more objective and less likely to cater to emotion or spiritual meaning, and also have numbers assigned to the cards if you’d like to put tip #3 to practice.

Whether you’re reading for yourself and others, please do keep in mind and be sure to share the fact that cards are tools to help you grow and make changes, not predict an inevitable doom or success. Predictive readings are awesome and can show you when the fruits of your labor might pay off to give you that extra reassurance to keep going, or when it is that you might bump into a relationship even, but the power is always in your hands.