The Past/Present/Future Spread + Sample Reading

By far, my favorite spread to use for any situation is the three card Past/Present/Future spread. I find that it can help in almost any situation, not to mention that it is very simple. If you have a tarot deck, let’s do a reading together. If not, feel free to follow along as I do this sample reading.

First, decide your question or situation. If nothing comes to you, that’s fine! You can always just let the cards tell you what they need to tell you.

Shuffle your cards and lay three out as shown.

Screen Shot 2015-05-14 at 6.35.48 PM

Flip them over one at a time. Look at the images on the cards and reflect on what the images make you feel. This will help in your reading. Most tarot decks come with a guidebook on meanings of the cards. Some are better than others. If you aren’t getting a good grasp on the meaning of the card you can always type the name into google and a plethora of explanations. There are also a number of books you can buy with explanations. I’ll make a list for you in a later post.

Now, let’s get to the juicy stuff.

The first card represents the past. What has led up to the situation you are in. The card I drew was the 9 of CupsWhatever delights you can imagine can be yours now, if you believe. Set your intention to be blissfully fulfilled. Make a wish! 

I can see how this card might relate to my past since I have always been a dreamer. I make wishes all through the day, some come true and some don’t. This card seems to say that I am a dreamer and that’s a good thing. My life has been headed in the right direction.

The next card represents the present. Your current situation. I drew the 9 of Swords. Your nightmares are creeping through into your waking world, and your fears are justified. Either stay quiet until the crisis passes or stand and face it bravely. 

I feel this explanation is pretty sufficient. Now, what’s to come?

The third card represents the future. What happens next? I drew Ace of CupsAll love must begin with self-love. Be as kind to yourself as you are to others, and love will increase in your life. 

Now let’s put all these meanings together. In the past, I have seen my wishes come true. I am a dreamer of dreams. Now, it seems that my dreams are being replaced by nightmares and I don’t know what to do. I have the choice to hide or face my adversity bravely. In order to have a happy future, I am going to have to start loving myself more and taking care of myself. This will allow good things to come into my life.

I don’t know about y’all, but that reading really spoke to me and helped me a lot.

Thanks for reading! Leave a comment below with what your past/present/future reading taught you.


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