Laying cards on people without them knowing.


I'm interested in your opinions about laying cards on other people, without them knowing. My view is that it's morally wrong, and I would take it as if someone was invading my personal self. My cousin went to a woman for a tarot-session, and she laid cards on her father, boyfriend and other family members. I got upset when I heard this, because I would not be happy if someone sat somewhere interpreting my thoughts about certain issues. It's ofcourse OK as long as the individual agrees to this.

Be blessed.


When I read, I involve the person in question alot: Iget them to say what they think of each card, how they would interpret it, etc. After all, who knows most about the questio and the querent than the querent themselves?

Personally, would not read about somebody when they aren't present, or haven't asked for it. Firstly, I have no need to. If I wanna find out something so desperately about my Dad, I'll ask him, not consult my deck. A deck is no replacement for good old family talk. Secondly, this is very much like invading someone's privacy. Thirdly, I believe in doing what you would want others to do to you. I would not appreciate somebody reading about me without me knowing or being there. Firstly, they might not tell me what they read, and therefore might make certain judgements about me which either could be wrong, or if not, could mean the reader will not give me a chance to explain. Secondly, they can't care that much about me if they prefer asking the Tarot about my problems to asking me!

Just my tuppence worth,



As a matter of ethics, you are not supposed to read somone or read for someone without having their permission first.



following the abstract principles I agree fully with what Tarotbear says; in practice though I do as Kiama describes, because how shall I do a relationship spread without saying something about the other, not present one?



What pure bunk.

Please explain to me what creates a moral or ethical dilemma about using Tarot to get insight on anything??? It's not like we're talking about searching through someone's garbage pails or personal papers. It's Tarot folks... it's YOUR interpretation of pictures on cards. What possible moral or ethical issues arise out of that?

As we go through life, we are constantly seeking and interpreting different signs and signals in our interpersonal relationships. We make opinions based on the way someone dresses, the kind of car they drive, where they live, what kind of education they have received, etc. We look at the surface and try to glean what is going on underneath. It's called human nature.

Is this immoral or unethical? No.

And neither is using Tarot to try to understand a person or a situation better.

The only moral or ethical issues that exist concern what you do with what the cards tell you. Anyone who passes off what they see in the Tarot as absolute truth or certainty creates an ethical dilemma. Gleaning something in a reading and then using that as a weapon against someone (i.e. gossip or blackmail) is acting in an immoral way.

Otherwise, I see absolutely no problem with gaining insight about life any way you can. If you have an intuitive tool like Tarot at your disposal, you should use it whenever and however you can. It hones the skill and it sharpens your instincts.

No offense folks, but creating a moral dilemma out of something like this really makes someone seem awfully full of themselves.


I register along the lines of various points made by Kiama, Kimon, and Mojo.

First, the absolute best way to resolve a question or conflict with someone you know is to ask directly. Interacting with the cards instead of with the important people in your life removes a layer of intimacy to say the least.

But when we are consulting the cards for advice about how to help ourselves through a conflict, and that conflict involves a relationship, then laying a spread is going to involve looking for insights into *the other/another*. The question is simply being phrased from a different point of view (yours), but you are still asking the cards to look into the point of view or motivations of someone else, to better understand how to proceed yourself.

I agree with Mojo that most of our moral/ethical dilemmas are of our own creation, so if asking the cards about someone else constitutes a moral/ethical dilemma for someone, I respect that as I respect all personal choices based on each individual's sense of what's right for them, but then that person probably needs to be very careful about the spreads s/he uses and how his/her questions are phrased (and should maybe even consider removing the court cards from their decks...j/k).

Kalin : )


This controversial subject has appeared previously, & likely will again. It is a subject that raises some strong feelings.
Personally, I prefer not to do second party readings mainly because it feels like invasion of privacy to me; it also depends on the person making the request. If I sense questionable agendas, I refuse.
Clients have wanted to know if their significant other is cheating. Usually the person asking already knows the answer. I have seen that "hell hath no fury like a woman scorned" in action.
One client wanted to know if her husband was cheating. I found out she was habitually going through his pockets, his wallet & his personal possessions; calling him or "visiting" him at work to see if he really was there or somewhere else. Aside from the fact that he wasn't always at his desk, she had reason to suspect him of extramarital activities--he had a history of same & he travelled often due to the nature of his job. I didn't have to consult the cards to tell her she already knew the answer & what was left was what she chose to do with it.
On the other hand, many of us including I, receive impressions on all kinds of things including people, with or without the cards. Do we tell our inner selves to hush up, or do we listen? If we receive information, there is a reason for it happening; however, where does one draw the line?
If an individual appears in a reading, any information that results about that individual is part of the reading.
Ultimately, the quandary may be reduced to how the information is used, as Mojo stated. As readers, we are responsible for our actions. If we have people who rely on what we state or advise, we need to exercise care in how we impart *any* "information". Though we cannot be responsible for someone else's actions, we can be responsible messengers. I tell people this is one view; another reader may see it differently. It's like anything else one would use. In the right hands, whether it is the reader or the querent, the wisdom of the Tarot is a boon. Used wrongly, it can be a harmful tool.


I'm with the majority (for once!) on this one. I believe it is an invasion of privacy to read for someone without their permission.
As for relationship spreads, you aren't reading the other person, you are reading how that person's actions will affect the querent.
As for Mojo's assertion that we have this tool, we should use it: To me, it's like evesdropping on a phone conversation. Sure, we have this wonderful tool called the dual phone line, but is it truly OK to use it to listen in on things that we weren't invited to?
Sticking with the "how will so-and-so's actions effect me?" types of questions are more ethical, yet still gives the querent the info they need.


Quote:Mojo (23 Dec, 2001 02:14):
What pure bunk.

You may not agree with what we said, but you don't need to demean it.

I see your point about the 'Tarot isabsolute' thing. I agree that we cannot take the Tarot to be absolute proof and truth: It doesn't work that way. However, giving the example of us looking at people's education, clothes, etc and gleaning what's going on underneath is not something I like to do I prefer to actually know the person first.

The difference beween using the Tarot for people and for situations is that people have freewill, feelings, and secrets that maybe they don't want to be looked into any furth. Situations can be looked at and decided as to whether or not you needt change what you are doing at the present time. I see Tarot as a problem solving tool rather than a find out about so-and-so tool.

I think my main problem with reading when I'm not there (Presuing I'm the person being read about) is that this person could think they see something which isn't true. If I'm not thre, I ont have a chance to explain myself, or put them right.



Sorry Kiama, but anytime someone (who should know better) makes a definitive statement like "as a matter of ethics, you are not supposed to read somone or read for someone without having their permission first" it gets my ire up. That is pure fiction just like all the other Tarot snobbisms like you can't buy your own deck or you need to wrap a deck only in silk.

Since these forums are often places where new tarot enthusiasts come for guidance, I find it disconcerting that things like this become statements of fact rather than opinion.

If someone doesn't feel comfortable reading about someone without their persmission, FINE, don't do it. But don't place powerfully judgmental labels such as "ethics" or "morals" on it.

When I see things like that, my Ace of Swords nature boils over, I guess... certain things just make my BS alarm go off and I have to respond.