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Celtic Cross Question


Yes, I am one of those horrid peope who actually likes the Celtic Cross. I have been using it since I first started tarot and my meanings for the positions have changed for me. I'm in the process right now of re-examining the top and bottom cards of the cross section. How does everyone read that top and bottom card? What do those positions mean for you?

The bottom card I usually read as what's underlying the question, not necessarily subconscious. Many of the people I've read for are at least aware of that influence.

The top card I've been reading as the best possible outcome, but it hasn't been feeling completely right to call it that. Using the position in that way seems to undermine the wonderful polarity you can get from reading it in contrast/comparison to the bottom card. Any suggestions for new position meanings I can experiment with? The books I've been reading don't really have useful alternatives.

Kes
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Funny thing,you are addressing *exactly* what I *don't* like about that spread! Those positions are so vague! I say that the first is the "foundation"; that puts it in the past but also the present. The other "crowns" the reading. I know, I know, what does *that* mean?? The real bugaboo of this spread to me!! I didn't know that my position was a popular one, however - how is it that you know that it is a disliked spread? Have people talked on here about it? Well *anyway*, I like to say that the "crowning" card is an influence that *may* come into play, something to be looked out for. It may be a bad card, in which case following your method would make it tricky, indeed.

Just some thoughts!
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Hi Keslynn

I don't think there is anything abnormal about liking the Celtic Cross spread! It can be a very insightful spread to use and also one that tends to connect with querrents on a symbolic level by the positioning of the cards.

I personally never really connected that much with the "standard" spread design...however, I did find one in The Sacred Rose Tarot that tends to be more "circular" in it's design that you might wish to try.

...........6.........
...10....1....11..
5.........2........7
....9.....3.....8..
...........4.........

In the SR spread, the "crowning card"...6...is known as the immediate future. Still sort of a vague meaning, but possibly helpful in relation to the other cards in the spread, and certainly more helpful than "what crowns the situation".

Another thought is you may also wish to look at the "crowning card" as the SUPERconscious...that which affects the situation from above as well as below. By looking at it from this angle, the meaning of this card is what ties the querrent to the earthly realm as well as the spiritual realm. Sort of the "gateway" card that connects the mundane cards (minors) in the spread to the magical cards (majors).

Hope this helps.
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The way that I learned the Celtic Cross was that the top card represented the goal or destiny of the seeker and the bottom card represented the recent past.

I have to say that I don't really enjoy this spread all that much; but Ive never really been able to figure out why. Something about it has always bothered me; but maybe I just need to play with it some more.
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The Celtic Cross spread was in my first ever tarot book. A book recomended for complete begginers, which I was, and this was the spread I was to learn first!! I think its too much to ask of a new student, to ask them to take on 10 cards and begin to see nuances and subtle connections.

Its like asking a begining guitar player to begin with Jimi Hendrix, when what you should really learn is 3 chords. Because a vast ammount of songs can be played with just 3 chords.Just as the vast majority of questions can be answered with 3 cards!

I have suspicions about the celtic cross...that if it were not called the celtic cross it would not appear in so many begginners books. If it were called something like "the useful 10 card challenge", people would discover it later on, and would not have the kind of headaches that I had trying to learn and master it.

This is my beef with the spread and the authors.

That said, I like it a lot, lol. I use it quite a lot in face to face readings because it seems to cover all the bases thouroughly, and people like to see a lot of cards on the table. This is the one big spread that I feel confident with.

I read the top card as the "lesson" that is being learned through going through this situation...or "what is above"
I read the bottom card as "what is below the surface"

Which links in to the Universal Law of "As above, so below", and I like that it adds that spiritual dimension to the spread
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Thanks for all the information! I really appreciate the insight. I'll have to give a few of them a try, but I think I'm gravitating toward the idea of "the lesson to be learned."

I'm interested to see what happens...

Kes
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I read the top card as the "lesson" that is being learned through going through this situation...or "what is above"
I read the bottom card as "what is below the surface"

Which links in to the Universal Law of "As above, so below", and I like that it adds that spiritual dimension to the spread


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I really like this answer. It spoke simply and more eloquently than i could have probably tried ot put it. Nice way with words... and i like that definition, as well as the Celtic Cross spread. Just my humble opinion.
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The Celtic Cross is a personal favourite & especially for the in-depth readings. Sometimes I use just the cross portion.

For the purposes of this discussion, omitting cards #1 & 2. Referring to clock face to delineate positions.

3. (12:00): Conscious awareness; that which is apparent.

4. (06:00): Unconscious awareness; past foundation or far past (far past pertaining to past lives &/or karma)

5. (09:00): Recent past to yesterday (may overlap present).

6. (03:00): Immediate future or new situation developing.
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I have also come to like the Celtic Cross spread because of its depth and clear answers.

Following a clockwise order, I read 3 as the foundation (positioned at 06:00 ), 4 as the recent past, 5 ( at 12:00 ) as the present, and 6 ( at 3:00 position ) as the probable future.

7,8,9, and 10 would be the querent, surroundings, hopes and fears, and the outcome - in this order-, this last (10) card I usually compare and pair with #5 and #6 above, and try to make a connection.
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There's a thread on the Tarot Spreads board about everyone's personal take on the Celtic Cross .

I've moved this thread to the Tarot Spreads board because I think it belongs there.

Major Tom
Co-moderator, Using Tarot Cards
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