A Tarot and Lenormand Thing

I enjoy cartomancy and find that it helps me gather my thoughts. I don't subscribe to any notions that the cards are guided by destiny or any grand design in the universe. Humans are pattern makers. We see patterns and act on them. Except when we don't – and that's where reading Lenormand or Tarot comes in. I've found that reflecting on a bit of controlled randomness keeps me in touch with the inner intuition and unconsious perceptions that get ignored while navigating the uncontrolled randomness of daily life.

Tarot and Lenormand and Divination (oh my!)

Tarot and Lenormand are very different systems. The Tarot will give you large scale and cryptic readings. You will see structures and archetypes without detail or worse, detail that becomes clear after the events happen. This is more so when you examine the major arcana. These 22 cards that signify major, archetypal and shared events in the cycle of life. In contrast Lenormand will tell you what you had for breakfast and what came of that.

I wanted something between these two extremes. The solution I came up with for my daily readings was to combine a practice I learned in Modern Magick by Donald Kraig, and a regular three card Lenormand reading.

The tarot practice involved sequestering the major arcana from the rest of the deck and studying one pulled at random as an exercise in familiarization. The major arcana is the journey of the Fool to Completion and Liberation... and back again. In this case, one card is pulled to set the tone for the reading. I have also been intent on the mindset of major changes.

Since Lenormand works differently and can be read like a sentence, I decided to add those next. The cards are highly intuitive and not as proscriptive as Tarot. If you feel that there is a particular significance to a card in a Lenormand spread, or an interpretation that seems stronger for you then you're advised to trust your intuition. This is the point of the exercise. Thus a simple three card spread is dealt. The cards are analyized in pairs so, 1-2 are grouped, 2 and 3 are grouped, and the whole reading is those ideas in a vignette like a three word poem.

An example layout and reading

It's better to show now that you hopefully have the jist. You're encouraged to read up about the specifics about both systems if meanings and the technical history interests you.


The layout doesn't matter so much honestly, but I will do something like the drawing below. The three cards are left to right like a sentence, and the major card is above (position 0) to stand apart.

        │     │
        │     │
        │  0  │
        │     │
        │     │

┌─────┐ ┌─────┐ ┌─────┐
│     │ │     │ │     │
│     │ │     │ │     │
│  1  │ │  2  │ │  3  │
│     │ │     │ │     │
│     │ │     │ │     │
└─────┘ └─────┘ └─────┘

Example Reading

Position Card Deck Meaning
0 The World Tarot Completion – accomplishment of goals
1 The Ship Lenormand Travel – a voyage to a new destination
2 The Partner Lenormand Your significant other
3 The Anchor Lenormand Stability – goal – finding your strong place

This one is straightforward which is good because I don't want to inform someone else's impression on a reading where there is gray area! A cursory read of the lower three shows the story of the reader traveling to their partner, and having stability in that. The major above it indicates that this is a part of life that signifies the completion of a goal, of an attainment. It's also generally positive.

It's not all roses, though I do try to read through the lens of the positive and what moves me forward. If the last card had been “The Snake” or “The Fox”, I would realize that there is either a need to be cunning and focus on my interests. It could also mean to just not go in blind. That is where your own personal understanding and reflection come in. In one sense it's like automatic writing with queues.


So that's really it. I slap a major arcana card from Tarot on top of a three card Lenormand read. If nothing else it makes a great exercise in reading regularly. As I have been tying it to the accomplishment of a large scale project, it has been good to keep in touch with what my unconscious might be trying to say but struggling to get out. This reading is quick, intuitive, and frankly fun. I look forward to it as part of my daily routine.

I hope you find it useful. Feel free to share this. I'm going to dub this one under the Creative Commons Share-Alike Non-Commercial License 3.0.

Feel free to use it for non-commercial use, and attribute to Dr. Skryzk, ©2021.

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