Tarot Cards Reversed

July 14, 2009

Empress Reversed

It can be quite over-whelming starting with both upright and reversed meanings when you are new to Tarot, so it is usually best to learn the upright cards first until you have a firm understanding of the numerous aspects involved in each card. This allows you to add your own meaning to the card through your experience, rather than simply following the often dogmatic meanings from a Tarot book. Reversed cards in your Tarot spreads can be extremely beneficial for a number of reasons.

1: It opens your readings up to another seventy-six new meanings, thus increasing the breadth and depth of your reading ability.

2: Using reversed cards can give new information to a reading that would be missed in a totally upright reading. Tarot is nuance and the reversed cards highlight the nuances.

However, interpreting reversed cards is no easy task! As with a lot of aspects in the Tarot, interpreting reversed cards depends on what you feel is right and on the surrounding cards. It would be foolish to apply a single meaning to each particular reversed card, or to say that all reversed cards reflect one particular aspect. Instead, it is important to understand all the possible interpretations that can be applied to reversed cards, so that you can read accurately for each unique situation.

Upright cards, on the whole, reflect something beneficial to the querent, the reversed card often indicates a blockage of some sort, not necessarily something bad. For example, Temperance reversed often suggests that the querent lacks patience and has difficulty in doing everything in moderation. In simpler terms, there is a blockage on the upright meaning (balance, patience, moderation).

Another perspective on reversed cards is that they represent hidden qualities – qualities which the individual possesses but does not identify with, or is unaware of, or projects onto others or the world. Therefore, these qualities remain in the unconscious mind.

Some writers on the Tarot suggest plainly that the reversed card indicates the opposite meaning of the upright card. Personally, I find this to be too simplistic.

I have found the best way to learn the reversed meanings is not to use someone else’s description, but to develop your own once you have learned the upright meaning. This is time consuming and can be quite hard, however if you wish to truly unlock Tarots ability to communicate you must learn and learning takes time.

Let me know how learning the reversed meanings have gone for you…

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