Cards can be paired and read together in all sorts of ways.
Things in common, opposing ideas or forces, complementary ideas or forces, two neccessary characteristics in one situation… is interpreting two cards as a pair necessarily a two-card reading? I think so. And is it possible to find duality everywhere – in every possible combination of two cards? Probably!
A tarot reading is a map of all the counterbalancing tendencies that are or could be operating in your life at one time. To read this map, you must understand the Law of Opposition – that any quality, once identified, implies its opposite. This is a basic principle of the material universe. The Fool discovers this principle at the very beginning of his journey when he meets the Magician and the High Priestess. These two show him that nothing can be defined in isolation, only as one pole of a balancing pair.
I tried to come up with some ‘position titles’ for two-card tarot readings and came up with these ideas:
What’s helping you at the moment
What’s holding you back
What you’re looking for
The challenges/opportunities open to you
What you need to do/focus on now
What you’ll need to do later
Thought I’d try the second one of those…asking simply
What am I seeking and how can I achieve it?
1. What I’m looking for
The Moon REV – Ending a time of anxiety and self-deception, and letting go of deeper emotional issues.
2. The challenges/opportunities open to me
Two of Cups – Emotional openness and willingness to give and receive. Taking what’s offered by friends, and investing in these loving relationships.
Reading as a pair…
Well, it’s not telling me anything I don’t already know. And contrary to my expectations I’m struggling to find links between the two cards, except via the question. I do want to let go of some hurt and anxiety I’ve carried for a long while, and the clear advice is to take the opportunity (and ye, challenge) of being open and loving with people close to me.
Naturally this led me right onto wanting to know ‘What’s helping/holding me back’ and ‘What to do now and later’ – the two other spreads I’d thought of! And since each question leads to another of the total six…maybe it can also be done as a linear six-card spread:
- What you’re looking for
- The challenges/opportunities open to you
- What’s helping you along right now
- What’s keeping you back right now
- What you need to focus on now
- What you’ll need to do later
Looking around the internet also turned up this long, detailed look at two-card readings on one of those ‘how-to’ sites.
I’m a 30-something writer, artist, tarot reader, and perpetual explorer of the space between thought, feeling, and action.
I believe that spirituality and ritual are for everybody. I’m about the journey, in all of its messy, non-linear, chaotic iterations. I am excited by anticapitalist business and living with my whole entire self present. I use tarot cards to bring forth hidden truth, and ritual to affirm my commitment, over and over, to my ever-shifting path.