Learning Tarot - Reading Reversals

A Few Words About Tarot Card Reversals

The Major Arcana | The Cups | The Wands | The Swords | The Pentacles

To read reversals or not to read reversals that is the question. You can ask ten different tarot readers about this question and you'll probably get ten different answers.

The general rule of thumb is that a tarot card in the reversed position is either treated as the same general meaning with a lesser degree of strength or in some cases the opposite of it's meaning. A good example is the 5 of Pentacles. In the upright position, it relates to loneliness, sickness, destitution, financial loss, etc. In the reversed position some people might read it as money regained, friendships rekindled, job opportunities, etc.

Tarot reversals have their place, but the positioning and the tarot cards surrounding it are just as important if not more important. Let's face it, the law of averages states that some cards have to come up reversed. If the majority of the cards in the spread are positive and upright, there's probably no need to muddy the waters with negative reversals. You have to use your gut instinct on this. Now on that note, if the majority of cards are reversed, well, the universe just might be trying to tell you something. At that point, the need to take reversals into consideration is very strong.

So How Should You Read Reversals?

Trust your instincts. That's really what tarot is all about. Tarot is a tool to help us hone our instincts and intuition. Listen to your gut feeling. Is all your attention being drawn to the reversed card? Does the reversed meaning fit into the story of the rest of the cards? What do the surrounding cards tell you? Once you've looked at the entire picture then you have to decide whether to keep the meaning of the card in its upright position or read the card as a reversal with a lesser degree of the cards energy or its opposite meaning.