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Jumper Cards

This post was written by Barbara Moore
on May 31, 2011 | Comments (14)

Have cards ever jumped out of the deck while you were shuffling them? It happens to me sometimes, no matter how careful I am. Sometimes it is clearly clumsy shuffling. Sometimes the jumping seems unaccountable. Jumping cards happen. The question is…do they mean anything and if so, how do incorporate that meaning into a reading?

There is an old tarot saying: If it falls on the floor, it’s at the door. We usually take that to mean, if a card comes out of the deck, it represents something that will happen very soon.

I do have a fancy for some of the old, charming tarot practices (such as viewing the 9 of Cups as the Wish Card), and like to bring them into my practice in a modern and useful way. Here are a few methods of dealing with jumping cards that I’ve tried. As with all things tarot, it is best if you try any method a few times and decide for yourself what resonates and what doesn’t.

  1. Pick it up, note what card it is, and put it back. If it comes up in the reading, pay special attention to it.
  2. Pick it up, put it off to the side, but bring it into the reading as a focal point.
  3. Pick it up, put it back in the deck, and ignore that it ever happened.
  4. Pick it up and use it as a significator.
  5. Pick it up and use it in the first position of the spread.
  6. Don’t pick it up. Just kidding. This is never recommended!
  7. Thanks to Susa Morgan Black, a Facebook friend, who reminded me of another method. Consider them as a special “outside the box” message and continue on with the reading.

I usually toggle between the first two methods, relying on my intuition to help decide which one to apply in any particular reading.

Reader Comments

Written By Dixie Vogel
on May 31st, 2011 @ 10:30 am

I often sit my jumpers aside and consider them an overlying theme of the reading or something that refuses to be missed. At least, if that’s what I feel like doing. 🙂 When I put jumpers back into the flow, they generally show right back up. Either way, I consider them making an effort to be heard and give them due consideration.

I like this approach better than blaming my clumsiness! 🙂

Written By Cass
on May 31st, 2011 @ 10:52 am

Thanks for the tips, I will definitely incorporate it to my practice!

Written By Pam
on May 31st, 2011 @ 10:56 am

I put it back in the deck but I remember what it was because often it acts as a clarifier for the entire reading.

Written By Jenna Jordan
on May 31st, 2011 @ 11:07 am

I haven’t used my tarot deck in a long time just had time to use them, however i had never heard of a Jumper Card and now i do i will remember this when i use my deck. Thanks!

Written By Scott K Smith
on May 31st, 2011 @ 2:23 pm


I think they are trying to get the hell out of the reading. Ha. No. I’m kidding.

I look at it this way. I have my intent to connect to the message and meaning that is going to communicate through the cards. So as I touch my cards the exchange has begun, if anything out of the ordinary happens, for example shuffling the cards and one doesn’t shuffle and flips instead… well there is message there in my experience.

I tend to put it where I feel it should go across the significator, or to the side as a heads up, or highlight. I listen and then proceed.

Thank you for crafting these tips, experiences, and blog entries.

Written By Nathara
on May 31st, 2011 @ 3:47 pm

I tend to set jumpers to the side and consider them information that needs to be considered along with the rest of the reading. A lot of times, they provide an explanation for the root of the situation and how it got to be that way.

Written By Barbara Graver
on June 1st, 2011 @ 9:34 am

I believe that spirit does have the ability to make the jump into conventional 3D reality so I always take these cards very seriously – even when they make me laugh. I am very selective about who handles my cards however and kind of careful with them myself however so that factors in as well.

Great topic! You have inspired me to do my own blog post on jumpers 🙂

Written By Julia
on June 1st, 2011 @ 5:28 pm

I think Jumpers are saying “Hey! Pay attention to me!”

So I put them aside and incorporate them into the reading

Written By Tarot Reading
on June 6th, 2011 @ 3:32 pm

Absolutely… I think jumpers are asking to be included – they often add some depth or added dimension to the reading 🙂

Written By Cole
on June 14th, 2011 @ 6:24 pm

I’ve had the Empress fall out on me in the past 3 out of 5 readings…

Written By Wendy
on September 7th, 2011 @ 3:36 pm

I always include ‘jumper cards’. I feel they jump out for a reason and are begging to be included in the reading. 🙂

Written By Melissa
on February 11th, 2015 @ 1:09 am

I do pay attention to the jumpers as well. I would be considering it’s meaning and whether I’m meant to take on his characteristics for a time, or whether I should be looking out for a Capricorn or an Aquarian in my life. I nearly always draw another card if the jumper is a court card to see what the pair wants me to know.


  1. Jumpers « Tarot Jay  on June 1st, 2011 @ 5:26 pm
  2. Helpful Techniques  on January 22nd, 2013 @ 8:01 am

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