TarotTool: Extremes and Averages

Written by Mark McElroy

When brainstorming and reading Tarot for yourself, it’s occasionally difficult to maintain your objectivity.

Sometimes, we project our worst fears onto the cards. And I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen the cards screaming about something negative my clients needed to recognize … only to have the clients say, “Looks like all sweetness and light to me!”

How to achieve more objective readings? I do it with a little technique I call Extremes and Averages.

Give it a try yourself:

Step One: Focus on a question or situation — preferably one that’s charged with a great deal of emotion.

Step Two: After shuffling, deal yourself three cards. Imagine these cards were sent to you by a trusted advisor who has only one way of communicating with you: passing you his wisdom encapsulated in three vivid pictures.

Step Three: Go to an extreme. Begin by reading the most negative possible message into the cards. Be hard on yourself. Draw on your worst fears. Scare yourself. Put the most heinous spin possible on each card.

If you drew The Chariot, for example, instead of reading that card as “victory,” read it as, “You’re going to be trampled on by the warriors of the opposing army.” If you drew The Sun, emphasize being dazzled, deceived, and frantic.

Step Four: Go to the opposite extreme. Now, read your greatest hopes into each card. If the cards could only deliver the most positive, most sugar-coated, most advantageous messages, what would the cards have to say?

If you draw The Tower, ignore any negative connotations and say, “Here comes a great opportunity to touch the clouds, then rebuild your dream from the ground up, exactly to your specifications.” If you draw the Devil, say, “Now’s an opportunity for you to get in touch with your materialistic side! Indulge yourself!”

Step Five: Average the Extremes. Having explored the worst possible and best possible spin on each of the three cards, now it’s time to come up with a reading that’s, in the words of Goldilocks, “Not too hard, and not to soft … but just right.”

Your goal during this step is to be as moderate as possible. Shoot for the most level-headed, even-handed mix of good and bad you can generate. A little of the news should please you, and a little of the news should challenge you.

You may discover, as I have, that using the Extremes and Averages approach helps you embrace your fears, admit your biases, and eventually see the “middle way” that leads to the best possible solution.

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