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Significators Made Relevant

This post was written by Barbara Moore
on May 12, 2011 | Comments (5)

We’ve been discussing significators lately, mostly methods for selecting them. If you’ve missed the previous posts, you can find them HERE and HERE.

There are so many reasons to NOT use a significator. Readers today have lots of reasons for relegating the use of significators to the dustheap of fortune telling. We say that it inhibits messages by taking a card from the deck and rendering it useless. We say that it makes the querent feel like a mere bystander, an observer as their fate plays out before them in the cards.

And those reasons are true. If we use significators as they were used in conjunction with “mere fortune telling” then yes, of course, they are not a good match for reading styles that reflect our current beliefs about how the Universe works.

So…why not evolve our understanding of significators in the same way that we’ve evolved the way we use the cards in general?

One way to do that is to use the Mirror, Mirror technique I described in my last post.

And I could continue to list techniques. But techniques are, or should be, a reflection of or a symbolic act representing what we believe. So let’s think about what we believe and how it applies to significators.

Most readers these days believe that the querent has the most influence (generally) over the events of his or her life. If that is true for you, then yes, the querent is the most significant card.

If you believe that the querent is significant and plays an influential role in her own life, then you would not have the card representing the querent off to the side, a mere focal point, simply watching the rest of the action, right? Instead, the querent, her energy as represented by the card (however you, the reader, has decided to select it) would significantly affect every card in that reading.

And this is why when I use significators, I move that card next to each card in the reading and read them as a pair. Cards read as pairs are read differently than singles. By reading all cards in relation to the significator card, we are incorporating the querent’s energy and power and influence into that card. Also, we are considering how the other cards affect the querent.

With this in mind, what techniques can you create that reflect YOUR beliefs about a querent’s role in her own life and in a reading about her life?


Reader Comments

Written By Ty
on May 12th, 2011 @ 9:27 am

When I read a multi card spread, I usually read each card seperately and then tie it all together as a larger message or ‘story’ for the querrent, within the framework of the spread itself. When I use significators, I tend to relate them in a ‘this is how you have been reacting to/interpreting issue/event X’ or ‘this is what you need to know about issue X’ depending on the question and spread. I plan to try the mirror, mirror technique to to get the querrent a feeling of whre they are now and where they want to be based on the information/steps revealed in the reading.

Written By Theresa | The Tarot Lady
on May 12th, 2011 @ 11:03 am

Hi Barbara

Great post. I’ve never been big on significators as I always felt that the right card for the querent will simply show up. This is giving me another way of thinking about it. Thanks – good food for thought!


Written By Blackbird_61 "BB"
on May 12th, 2011 @ 3:46 pm

Most readers these days believe that the querent has the most influence (generally) over the events of his or her life. If that is true for you, then yes, the querent is the most significant card.

Thing is,
The more I learn about Divination, especially Astrology, and the better I get at it; the more aware I become of influnces outside ones self – be they expressed as Transits, Progressions, Natal Potenials, and whether those influences extend from the Psyche or the Stars; I am less and less of the opinion the influence of the individual is truely all that significant; and view Fate as far more powerful than perhaps is popularly concieved.

Written By Diana
on May 14th, 2011 @ 12:36 am

I’ve found significators useful only when a querent goes through a period of transition, and needs a sort of “this is you.” It does also come in handy when reading into specific interpersonal situations, where the person needs to know “this is you in this situation,” especially as our roles change based on what group of people we interact with. Most of the time, however, people have a pretty good idea of who they are if they routinely get tarot readings, and that means that the significator doesn’t reveal anything particularly interesting.

Written By Wendy
on May 23rd, 2011 @ 9:33 am

I like the idea of the mirror method and I am going to use it I few times and see how it feels for me. I don’t like using significators but this method seems to make sense to me. Thank you. 🙂

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