Which is the best tarot spread?
The one that best answers your question of course!
If you are just starting out then a three card spread is probably best, it allows you to focus in depth on the three cards, any more can be overwhelming.
There are numerous three card readings; past, present future; advice, advice, outcome, inner-world, outer world, advice...
I think the daily three card reading is such a fundamental starting place for tarot reading that I have written a crib sheet for my favorite reading. It covers each card, in each position, which is a great starting point for when you are learning.
Once you are comfortable with a simple daily spread, there are three main types of readings to chose from;
Where every card in the reading is given a specific meaning. The most well known being the Celtic Cross.
There are many, many, types of Celtic cross, and if you can't find the right one for you- simply adjust one to make it right.
My Celtic cross can be found here
A structured reading is good if you have a very specific question, or are looking for very clear advice.
The great thing about a structured reading is that what ever your question or problem, there is a spread out there designed to help.
You can find plenty of tarot spreads to browse here!
The variety can become a little confusing though, and I suggest you experiment -but try to find two or three that you really like and deepen your connection with those spreads.
A free form spread is where groups of cards are given a general title (often past, present, future).
This type of reading will give a broader overview, but at times may give less specific answers. I really like a pyramid spread, often finding lots of depth in the flow of the cards.
It can be really helpful to build a free flowing spread on your favourite 3 card spread, simply reading for 3 cards in each position instead of 1 (making a 9 card reading in total)
In this reading the bottom three cards are past.
The middle three cards are present.
And the tops three cards are future.
Where you simply turn over the number of cards until you feel you have enough information to answer your question.
The danger with this spread is rapidly turning over difficult cards that may hold an important message for you, until you get to a card you love, where upon you consider the reading finished and put all the cards away!
It is important that you decide in advance to turn over a number of cards (for example 5) read them carefully, and then turn over another set.
This is the most flexible of readings, but also the hardest as there is no structure at all, and you can end up with a lot of cards and lose the thread of the reading.
It is perhaps best used to extend and deepen a more structured reading.
If you have laid out a structured reading, understood it, but would like more clarification, a free-flowing reading is great.
Leave the original reading out & lay another (for example) 5 cards simply asking for greater understanding about the reading.
(Robon Wood Tarot)
I am building my website at the moment, and adding lots of information to help you on your tarot journey, take a look...www.maddyelruna.co.uk