Many people have asked, "I'd like to buy some tarot cards but I've been told that they have to be given to me as a gift. Is that true?" No, not really. In some circles, there used to be a tradition that one should receive a first deck as a gift. The tradition was started a long time ago when tarot cards were almost impossible to come by. Usually, the only way to acquire a deck was to "know somebody." Nowadays, there are hundreds of decks easily available through shops, catalogs, and the Internet. There are those who still feel that to be properly initiated into tarot, their first deck should be given to them. Even if you choose to uphold this tradition, however, it doesn't apply to any subsequent decks you might wish to own.

I bought my first tarot deck from what was once called a "head-shot" in the 60s, and my father's family was Gypsy, although they'd become "settlers." My journey with the tarot was not hindered in any way because of having purchased my first deck. So, a good rule to apply might be to let go of superstition.

As for the storage of your tarot deck when not in use, this one really is left to personal discretion. I know professional readers who keep their cards in the original box; why not, it’s part of the deck?

Other folks feel compelled to use silk scarves, special boxes or bags. The cards in my home office are wrapped in a scarf and kept in an easy access drawer near my reading table, while the cards I take with me to a metaphysical store I read in one night a week or kept in a special Celtic bag a student made for me.

If you are going to use a scarf, box, or bag to store your deck in have it ready to use after performing the Seasoning Ritual we looked at in Part 1 of this article. If you’re going to store the cards in their original box, simply run it through the smoke of your smudge stick or incense before you do the cards during the Seasoning Ritual.

Now your cards are ready to be put to use. Deciding on what kind of a spread or layout you are going to use is important. I start my students out using simple one to three-card spreads, rather than an overwhelming 36-card spread. Experienced cartomancers know that a comprehensive reading can be performed with just a few cards, and so it is important to begin simple.

Most beginning readers seem to use the Celtic Cross spread, and while it is of great value is not always the best spread to use. However, you can find many different layouts in tarot books and the booklets that come with every deck. My FAERY WICCA TAROT mini deck booklet offers four wonderful beginner spreads to use.

Most importantly is to choose a layout that is simple and in which every position makes clear sense to you. If there is one position that you don’t understand fully, then don’t use that spread find a different one. This is a common beginner mistakes.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Want to find out the underlying influence in a situation? Or maybe a subconscious motive or desire? Look at the card on the bottom of the deck. It never fails to give the reader additional insight!

Performing a reading is what you’ve been waiting for, and now the time has come to one, so first off, take a deep breath and relax.

Take another deep breathe, or three, whatever you need to relax and then begin the process of shuffling the cars, cutting the deck, and laying them out when you sense it is time.

How will you know it’s time? The moment you ask yourself that question, then it’s time.

Layout the designated number of cards; put the rest of the deck to the side and take some time to really see the spread before you.

Don’t rush.
Take your time.

The reading is only as accurate as the reader’s ability, and nervousness and rushing can cause oversight or misinterpretation. But don’t freeze-up, either.

Look at the spread, close your eyes, take another breath, open your eyes and look at position one and either say the message the picture of the card is telling you or refer to the classical or special meaning of the card as given in the deck booklet or a tarot book, and stay with the card until you feel, sense, think, or perceive that it’s time to move on to the next card.

Finally, when you have completed the reading and your cards are stored away, take a moment to appreciate yourself for providing spiritual insight to either yourself or another person. You have stepped into the Otherworld, another realm: that of being a cartomancer, a person who bridges the world of the seen with that of the invisible and mysterious unseen world.

I’d like to end this Two-Part article with one more Food For Thought: Even if you understand that tarot makes no value judgments and that each card contains a spectrum of meanings, you may still find it difficult to find positive interpretations for some cards. Here are suggestions for three of the heaviest cards:

The Tower: The destruction of old structures is the fastest route to liberation. Revel in the freedom!

The Three of Swords: “Three for one and one for all!” The intellect is grounded in the heart.

The Devil: Did you know that the esoteric function assigned to the Devil is laughter? Be devil-may-care!

Other positive interpretations for the more negative-seeming cards in the deck are clearly defined in my FAERY WICCA TAROT mini deck booklet, and original FAERY WICCA TAROT KIT book now available as a book on CD. This will also be the subject of a future article.

Author's Bio: 

Official Tarot Guide of Kisma entered the world of tarot at the age of 8, began formal studies at 16, and performed her first professional reading at 22. With over 40 years of tarot experience she is the creator of the Faery Wicca Tarot, and a world-wide acclaimed psychic and tarot master.

For more information on Kisma, visit her SelfGrowth profile at:

For more information the FAERY WICCA TAROT deck, online classes or readings with Kisma, visit:

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Kisma Stepanich-Reidling, The Official Guide to Tarot