~ Your personal version of the Celtic Cross



1. The issue that most urgently needs addressing- I have found that this spread works best with a question and kind of flounders without one. But, querents often find framing a question difficult, so I have found using this card as a way of discovering the question very useful.*
2. Obstacles that need to be overcome to resolve the issue
3. Lesson: what the querent can learn/discover as a result of dealing with the issue
4. Past events that have a bearing on the issue
5. Events of recent times that have led up to the issue
6. Future events/possibilities that will have a bearing on the outcome of the issue
7. Enviroment: what else is going on in the querent's life that is either helping or hindering dealing with the issue
8. What other people think about the issue and how this impacts on the way the querent is handling things
9. Secret hopes and fears about the outcome of the issue
10. Guidance card 1
11. Guidance card 2 - I tend to take these two cards together to read the outcome of the issue and how the querent can best help themselves in dealing with it.

*On occassions I've asked a sceptical querent to hold the question in their mind while shuffling but not to tell me. Nearly always the first card drawn reveals exactly what they were thinking of. This has been a great way of getting past the scpeticism issue, well, if they havent been completly freaked out by and ran for the hills!


Clusters of cards within the CC

One of my favorite books is Tarot and Psychology by Arthur Rosengarten. One of the subjects covered is the use of certain groups of cards within the overall Celtic Cross spread.

These clusters or two/three card combinations are used to add more focused insights within the overall reading. These clusters are specific card positions and not cards that have the same suite or number.

My question is: Does anyone on the list use this technique? Dave


I hardly ever use the Celtic Cross, but when I do I use this version:


1. The querent at this time
2. What the querent is dealing with in his/her life at this time; the basic situation
3. How the querent's distant past influenced this situation
4. How the recent past influenced this situation
5. The querent's goal
6. What will most likely happen in the near future
7. The querent's attitude
8. How others see the situation
9. Hopes and fears
10. Outcome

Just a few days ago, though, I came up with a modified version of the Celtic Cross that I really like. I added a few cards and made the spread symmetrical. I've only used it twice so far, so it still needs some testing and tweaking, but so far I like it.


1. Yourself
2. Question card – what the reading is about
3. The past's influence on this situation
4. What will happen in the near future regarding this situation
5. What is known
6. What is not known
7. Help from within yourself
8. Hindrance from within yourself
9. Help from others
10. Hindrance from others
11. Hopes
12. Fears
13. Help from God / the universe
14. Lesson that must be learned; tough love from God / the universe
15. Outcome


13 card variant


The cross represents people, places, and times

1. represents the quereant or the theme of the reading
2. enhancing or diminishing influences
3. What is aboce the situation omnipresently
4. What is the foundation of the situation
5. distant past
6. recent past
7. near future
8. distant future

The staff represents actions and reactions
9 . What is the (querents) mentality
10. What is the environment of the situation
11. What actions can be taken
12. reactions of actions taken
13. Final conclusion based on this information


I have been reading through the postings on Celtic cross - the spread I think most of us start with - very interesting, and I will try some of the additions, I particularly like the idea of a shadow card. dadsnook2000 asked if anyone uses combinations of cards in the spread, and i have started this. There is a great articla in the new Llewelyn Tarot reader 2005, The Meta-celtic spread which talks about combinations.


The Centre cards (1 &2) are the heart of the problem, and correspond to position 7 Hopes and fears;
the four around it (3,4,5,6)are the 'neighbourhood', and correspond to 8, the view of others ( sometimes, in a more inner journey question, this card becomes the karmic view),
then take the three horizontal cards, numbers (4,2,6) and look at them as a physical world past present and future, corresponding to position 9, what you need to get through to achieve the 'prize" or end.
Finally, positions 3,1 &5 are the inner journey of past, present and future possibilities, culminating in 10, the final outcome.

I have found this perspective almost gives me a second reading from the same spread, and a great deal of additional insight. It often helps position a card that doesn't seem to quite fit in the spread at all.

Thanks for all the tips!



My celtic cross looks like everyone else's. I am not very good with ASCII art so I'll just explain the positions as I go. First, the Querent card is at the center, covered with card 1, crossed by card 2, card 3 is underneath, card 4 behind, card 5 above, card 6 before, card 7 to 10 lead up the staff to the right. For me card 1 is the current situation, card 2 are the influences opposed to that, or working to change the situation, it is always read rightside up if I am using a deck in which that matters (in my case Rider Waite) card 3 is the root of the matter, what has brought the querent to where they are. Card 4 is an influence that has been important but that is passing away. Card 5 is a possibility, or a suggested course of action. Card 6 is something that will come to pass in the immediate future. Card 7 (the bottom of the staff) is the Querent's fears, card 8 is how others who are important regard the situation, card 9 is the querent's hopes and card 10 is the final outcome.


Celtic cross

Well I've been using the spread recommended by the book of Luis Royo's Black Tarot. The outcome is surprisingly accurate!

So I'll put it down:

***********11 Now the meaning:
***********10 1-Describes the querent concerning the question
***********09 2-Environment surrounding the querent
***********08 3-(crossed) what blocks the achievement
*****6****** 4-What's behind the question, the unconcious
************ 5-What happened in the past (inluences)
5** 1/2 (3) **7 6-Influences in the present or near future
************ 7-What will happen in the future
*****4****** 8-The querent's biggest fears concerning the question

9-The social and familiar environment
10-The querent's desires towards the question
11-The sintesis

If you have any questions...Feel free to ask


My modified monster

I use the traditional CC but sometimes I add an extra card over the first one. These are like footnotes and further expain the first card laid. Only seems to work if I decide beforehand that this is how I plan to lay the spread.

It looks like this

******5/15 **********10/20
4/14 ***1/11***6/16***9/19

I have to REALLY be in the mood to do this, but when I do, it works really well
But I am curious to try it this way to see if I like the flow better

********5/16 ******10/11
4/17 ***1/20***6/15**9/12


I've been to this tarot reader who has like 90% accuracy in her reading, and when she does the celtic cross, she sometimes puts 3 cards in every position. I can't remember the excate order she did it, but it seem to work very well, but since I'm a beginner I was afraid the 3 cards would confuse me more. Does anyone know how this is done?