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celtic cross...all reversed

Thread originally posted on the Aeclectic Tarot Forum on 30 Aug 2004, and now archived in the Forum Library.



mehndigirl  30 Aug 2004 
I have NEVER had this happen before. Reading for my best friend, I laid out a celtic cross spread. I usually don't read reversed meanings asside from "lessening or darkening" them a bit. But I had to notice, and she did too, that they were all reversed! Without spelling out the whole reading, which wasn't unusual in any other way, is there any meaning I should note in ALL the cards being reversed? Has anyone else seen this happen in a celtic cross or other spread of a simmilar number of cards? What did it mean to you?

Thanks in advance for any input

mehndigirl 


Rusty Neon  30 Aug 2004 
In this, more than any other case, the reversals should be seen as a general observation for the reading (delay, interiority, etc.) rather than as a reversed card in each specific position. 


magpie9  30 Aug 2004 
This is heresy, I know.
In my experience, the deck is upside down. I'd read them upright, or re-shuffle and try again. :)
Keep in mind that reversal improves some cards. The only other "message" I can see in this is that your friend needs to look at things from a somewhat different point-of view.
Is she in a Hanged-Man sort of situation ? 


Fulgour  31 Aug 2004 
:)

"All the cards have ambivalent meanings so they can suggest
both positive and negative dimensions of experience...

This technique of reversals is a relatively modern innovation,
and it can confuse rather than elucidate the meaning of a card."


The Mythic Tarot
by Juliet Sharman-Burke and Liz Green
(listed as your favourite deck...)
page seventeen

:) 


Trogon  31 Aug 2004 
Hi Mehndigirl! I believe it was the person who first began teaching me the that told me, "if a reading comes up with all the cards reversed, there is some blockage for the reading ... " Meaning that this is not a good time for the reading and to end it and try at another time (for instance later in the day, or perhaps the next day). She only used the Celtic Cross at that time, I believe, and it would be a fairly unusual occurance to have all the cards come up reversed - though as you've discovered, it certainly isn't impossible.

However, I no longer fully susbscribe to this theory. The reason is simple, I do a lot more readings using 3 to 5 cards and with fewer cards, the chances of all of them being reversed increase considerably. Now, if all the cards come up reversed, I usually just continue with the reading and read the cards as reversed, figuring that was the way they were meant to come up. If, however, when I look at a reading with all reversed cards and I "hear" my guides or "someone" saying, the time isn't right, I'll end it there. This has only happened once though, and shortly after I'd layed out the cards (it was a self reading) and found them all reversed and heard that "it's not a good time" thing, I was interrupted and couldn't get back to do the reading for several hours.

Hmmm... not sure how helpful that was, but there it is. 


Fulgour  31 Aug 2004 
Quote:
Originally posted by Trogon
This has only happened once though, and shortly after I'd layed out the cards (it was a self reading) and found them all reversed and heard that "it's not a good time" thing, I was interrupted and couldn't get back to do the reading for several hours.
Were you standing up or sitting down? 


Trogon  31 Aug 2004 
Quote:
Originally posted by Fulgour
Were you standing up or sitting down?
Uhh... sitting... I seldomly do a reading standing up... arthritus in the knees you know? 


Fulgour  31 Aug 2004 
Well, I hope you're sitting now, because I have the Rohrig deck
and book here, and there is no mention in either one of reversals...
and isn't that your favourite deck? 


Lee  31 Aug 2004 
Quote:
Originally posted by Fulgour
Well, I hope you're sitting now, because I have the Rohrig deck
and book here, and there is no mention in either one of reversals...
and isn't that your favourite deck?
Fulgour seems to be placing a great deal of emphasis on a deck designer's wishes regarding whether to read reversals or not. I think it's interesting to read what various authors have to say (or not) about reversals, but I really don't think that a deck's author should be seen as authoritative on what one personally does. If I feel like reading the Mythic or the Rohrig with reversals, I'm going to go right ahead and do it.

Just as an interesting example, Caitlin Matthews in her Arthurian Tarot explains at great length why she thinks reading reversals is wrong. But the same author, in her Celtic Wisdom Tarot, explains at great length why reversals are necessary. I think we should all follow Matthews's example, and do what feels right at the time, regardless of what anyone else says, or even regardless of what we ourselves may have done in the past.

-- Lee 


Fulgour  31 Aug 2004 
Quote:
Originally posted by Lee
Fulgour seems to be placing a great deal of emphasis on a deck
designer's wishes regarding whether to read reversals or not.
Thanks for the vote of confidence ~ I enjoy your posts also! 


Trogon  31 Aug 2004 
Quote:
Originally posted by Fulgour
Well, I hope you're sitting now, because I have the Rohrig deck
and book here, and there is no mention in either one of reversals... and isn't that your favourite deck?


Well, yes... that's very true. That doesn't stop me from using reversals in my readings... and quite successfully I might add. :D I also use reversals with my Thoth deck. :eek: That's my style of doing Tarot readings. When I first began learning the Tarot, I began by learning both the upright and the reversed meanings of the cards (I didn't have Thirteen's sound advice not to start that way at that time). Now it is rather ingrained in my "style" of reading and I find it easiest to do readings this way.

Probably the only deck with which I would not use reversals in a reading would be one of the Marseilles-style decks. Those pip cards just don't lend themselves to being reversed... can't even tell with most of them. ;) This is assuming I ever get another Tarot de Marseilles (gave mine away a year or two ago).

My point is, reading with reversals works for me. Regardless of whether or not reversed meanings are given for cards in the LWB. Then again, LWB's can be very misleading. Have you looked at the LWB for the Rider-Waite-Smith? Most of the meanings in that are quite a bit off the mark from what I use. ;) In other words; what works for me in my Tarot readings and studies, may not necisarily be right for anyone else. 


mehndigirl  31 Aug 2004 
Quote:
Originally posted by magpie9
Is she in a Hanged-Man sort of situation ?


Yes, she is. In fact the Hanged-Man was in the spread.
Interesting point. Thanks. 


mehndigirl  31 Aug 2004 
It seems I've unintentionally opened a can of worms here! I made my desision about not reading reversals a long tome ago, but I have to admit, after this I may rethink it. I think we probably all agree as a group that coincidence is IMPORTANT, and 10 cards coming up upside down is a big one.

I've been without any kind of tarot community for all of the 10 years I've been studying. It's really great to relate to real people rather than just books and cards. I have so much more to learn.

Thank you all for your posts.

mehndigirl 


Trogon  31 Aug 2004 
Hey... I'm glad you opened the can of worms. ;) The "reversals vs. no-reversals" debate is always sure to be a lively one! I think the only ones that really rival it are the "Marseilles decks vs. all other decks" debate and the "do Tarot cards have their own power" debate. :D 


Fulgour  31 Aug 2004 
Quote:
Originally posted by mehndigirl
In fact the Hanged-Man was in the spread.
:( but...mehndigirl, wasn't the card reversed?!? :) 


Macavity  31 Aug 2004 
I think you should mix 'em up properly (i.e. 1/2 deck reversed) and just go for it! :D

Then you'd get about one in a thousand (2^10? - Give or take!) Celtic crosses, with ALL cards reversed. From a personal standpoint an "un-fun" (harder?) reading, but nothing like a challenge, Eh? ;)

Recently, I was doing the canonical Three Carder: "Is XXXX the right guy for me?" and the deal produced Three Knights reversed. Was he a baaaad boy, or what? Or maybe the candidates were all too busy arguing among themselves... })

Macavity 


mehndigirl  31 Aug 2004 
Quote:
Originally posted by Fulgour
:( but...mehndigirl, wasn't the card reversed?!? :)


Fulgour,

Now you're just making me dizzy LOL 


Ace  31 Aug 2004 
Quote:
Originally posted by Lee
Fulgour seems to be placing a great deal of emphasis on a deck designer's wishes regarding whether to read reversals or not. I think it's interesting to read what various authors have to say (or not) about reversals, but I really don't think that a deck's author should be seen as authoritative on what one personally does. If I feel like reading the Mythic or the Rohrig with reversals, I'm going to go right ahead and do it.
-- Lee


Well said, Lee! On the other hand, Fulgour is right, if the Hanged Man Rx is in the mix it may be showing a crack of light in a blocked up situation (depending on the placement: if it is other people's opinion, she is STILL blocked!) I usually see a lot of reversals as indicating that the querent really doesn't want to deal honestly with the situation: denial not just blocked. I might have asked the cards what the querent is afraid of, or asked the querent to ask again in a week-after he/she had some time to think about and accept the fact that this situtation must be faced. 


The celtic cross...all reversed thread was originally posted on 30 Aug 2004 in the Using Tarot Cards board, and is now archived in the Forum Library. Read the active threads in Using Tarot Cards, or read more archived threads.

 
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