Ah, that moment when a new deck arrives! Pulling off the wrapping, opening the box and letting the cards fall into your hands. That new deck smell. Now to look at the cards – always so much more beautiful in person. And I like to look through a new deck in order first, as it comes, getting impressions from the artwork, and to say hello. Then I shuffle and do a three-card reading for myself – no questions or expectations, just “What do you want to tell me?” and see what happens. It can be anything because I haven’t suggested any parameters, but it’s usually something of an “Oh! Lovely!” moment. Usually.
Then there are decks that are cranky, right out of the box. Like “Oh you want a reading, do you? Here you go. How about the Tower, the 8 of Swords and the 3 of Swords to keep you busy?” Oo, I’m sorry I asked. And I will admit … it hurts my feelings. What did I ever do to you? I just got you. You can’t be mad at me yet. Can you? How am I going to work with a deck that acts like this?
So I devised a spread for a new deck that gets to the heart of what’s going on there. I know some people regularly interview a new deck, but this spread comes from a slightly different perspective. Every deck has its own personality – that’s part of the reason we have more than one deck. We love the artwork of course, but if it was just the difference between artistic styles, I think we’d all get tired of buying new decks pretty quickly. They all work differently, too. This spread asks for one specific deck’s opinion of me, or you, as the reader. What do you, Mr Thoth, think of working with me? How about you, Ms Tarot by Caro? Is this going to work?
This spread gives you insight into how you can interpret readings with a deck. If you know from the start a deck is going to be open and honest, even if it hurts, that helps a lot with challenging readings. You possibly don’t want to work with that one if you’re feeling vulnerable (or maybe you do – if you’re tired of feeling vulnerable). And if you know a deck is gentle and comforting, then maybe that’s perfect!
I recently bought the Symbolic Tarot of Wirth:
I interpreted the reading using Thoth titles for the cards, which gives me ‘Peace’, ‘Virtue’, and ‘Love’. Looks good! In this context, I would say that ‘Love’ could apply in the larger sense of love – spiritual love, as well as love between people, and of course romantic relationships.
I’ve found this spread to be really helpful with a new deck, but I would say that you could also use it after you’ve had a deck for any amount of time. When you’re working together, it never hurts to clarify where everyone is coming from.
If you try this spread, then I would love to know how you find it!