Stop Asking the Tarot About Your Stupid Crush. Please.

You want to know what your ex is up to. Or if your partner is cheating. Or what your boss thinks of you. Or if that girl you just met at the party is obsessing over you the way you are over her.

Look, don’t bring these kinds of questions to the oracle. The poor oracle goes through so much abuse already.

Imagine climbing a mountain to lay these questions before a wizened guru. You’d be out of your mind to be so petty! You have the opportunity to ask something meaningful, something profound, something life altering. Use it!

A questions like “does she like me?” doesn’t matter because it’s not going to affect what you do. If you have a crush, you make an effort to reach out without overdoing it. You play it a bit cool, but show interest, and see how s/he responds. Whatever that Tarot says won’t change that.

If the results of your question won’t change your course of action, don’t waste a reading on it.

Here are some tips for formulating a powerful and effective question for your next reading.

How do You Write a Question for the Tarot?

An effective question is:

  • About you
  • Empowering
  • In the present tense
  • Worded in positive language

Let’s look at these in more detail.

Make it About You

Don’t ask about somebody else. Respect your crush’s privacy. Try to get your partner to open up to you about what’s wrong or why they might be cheating. Or go to therapy. Or leave them, for god’s sake, but don’t try to spy on them with magical cards. These kinds of questions are controlling, invasive, and inappropriate.

It’s not that these kinds of readings can’t be done. But they’re tricky. They’ll mess with your head, and they debase a very powerful healing tool. So keep the spotlight on you and your own motives. All it takes is rewording your concern. For example:

Is it worth my time to pursue this crush? might be more meaningful.

Or try what can I do to improve my relationship with my cheating partner?

A little grammar helps you do this. You are the subject of the reading, so you need to be the subject of the question. Why is x happening to me? makes you the object. It’s a reading about “x.” It’s disempowering. What can I do about x? makes you the subject. It’s about you, so it empowers you.

If these rephrasings make you uncomfortable, perhaps you’re not ready to be in the driver’s seat of your own life. In that case, Tarot is not for you.

WTF is wrong with him why won’t he call me?!?

Fuck Fatalism!

A Tarot reading shows what factors are creating your situation. Some of those factors come from within you, for instance a jealous streak that’s rearing its head. Other factors are apparently external, like a daunting restructuring at work. You have control over the former, but not always the latter.

It’s important to delineate between what you do and don’t have control over. Part of the purpose of the reading is to help clarify this so you can make spiritually intelligent decisions about how to move forward. Focus on managing what you can change, in the context of what you can’t.

The spiritual climate, which the Tarot reads, is like the weather. Imagine you are hanging laundry in the rain. You could fight to get your soaking clothes on the line, sobbing why does god hate me? all the while. Or you could go inside and light some candles and make a cup of tea and read a goddamn book like normal people do when it’s raining. Finish your laundry another day.

You don’t have control over the rain. To fight it or cry about it is useless. But if you embrace the reality of a rainy day, you can make the most of it, and even turn it around into something constructive.

A Tarot reading can tell you when it’s a spiritually rainy day, so you don’t exhaust yourself uselessly working against the forces of nature. It can tell you which direction the prevailing winds are blowing, so you can boost your efforts by applying them at the right moment. It can tell you when your motives are rooted in selfishness or ego, so you can expurgate them.

This is the power of Tarot. It guides you on the path of self evolution. To use it for mere fortune telling doesn’t do justice to the Tarot’s range and depth.

Get Present

Speaking of what you can and can’t change, a lot of people come to the Tarot wanting to ask about THE FUTUUURE. But can you see the future, or can’t you? More importantly, can you change it?

The Tarot shows us two kinds of futures. One is the part of the future that has already been set in motion by cause and effect. This is already written in reality, because of present causes. It just hasn’t come into effect yet.

For example, if you were to throw a ball at a wall and pause time, you don’t have to be psychic to know that the ball is going to hit the wall bounce back. It’s already happening, it just hasn’t arrived yet. And it’s too late to change because it’s a direct result of what already is.

The more distant future, like what you do after your game of handball, is largely unwritten. You can change it. It’s also harder to see.

This part of the future is estimable based on the current direction of things. But it’s changeable through deliberate acts of will. For example, after the ball bounces back and you finish your handball game, it is likely that you will shower off, go home from the gym and fight with your wife, because that’s what you do every Wednesday. But that doesn’t mean that’s what you have to do.

If you want to change that future before it materializes, you could buy some flowers on the way home. Or you could not go home to a wife that makes you feel trapped in a box. Whatever, dude! It’s your life! A deliberate change now could save you from going down a destructive path.

Alternatively, if you are on a path you like, and the Tarot shows it going in the right direction, don’t make a disruptive change, like suddenly changing jobs because you get a bee in your bonnet.

This is the point of examining the future: to see what you can change now to create the result that you want.

More than anything, the Tarot shows you now. A reading is like a still pool that lets you peer deeply into the present moment. The parts of the past and future that it reveals are really only reflections of now. So don’t get too caught up in the future and forget to deal with the present, which is the only true reality.

In fact, if you want to go deeper still, consider that there really is no future. There is only the ever-evolving present moment. Time is just a measurement of changes to the present. To a certain extent you can guide and influence how your present experience changes. And that is much more powerful than passively asking what’s going to happen to me?

Keep it Positive

This is a general rule of affirmations and spellwork, but it applies to divination as well. Don’t ask for what you don’t want. Ask for what you do want. In other words, instead of asking how can I stop smoking? try how can I successfully heal from addiction?

The reason for this is that magic, including divination, is communication with the subconscious. The subconscious understands images and emotions. Your mind associates images and emotions with every word. Images that go with smoking might be sickness, tar, death, etc. So when you ask how do I stop smoking? the subconscious understands smoking, sickness, tar, death and starts increasing these things in your reality. It doesn’t matter that you said stop or not or don’t before it.

So get rid of negative words like stop, not or don’t. Rephrase the question around what you do want. Try words like help, improve, heal and understand. If you get stuck, a good default question is how can I better understand x?


St. Jerome Trying to Get a Handle on His Grammar. Caravaggio, 1605

Don’t Ask Questions You Don’t Want The Answers To

You’d be surprised how often we do this. But consider in advance how you might handle a response you don’t like. The Tarot isn’t here to applaud you all the time. It’s here to help you grow. You’ll get better results if you approach it soberly.

Now you know how to effectively enquire: rephrase your question so it’s about you, empowering, in the present, and using positive language. Remember that fate is a disempowering fallacy, and a reading is more like a weather report than a foretelling. Instead of pushing your insecurities on the Tarot, ask empowered questions constructive to your growth. Try workshopping a few questions before your next reading and see what you come up with. Half of the readings you thought you wanted, you might not even need!



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