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Thoughts FromThe Four Gates

  • Writer's pictureKai

How to read playing cards for divination

Updated: Dec 24, 2022

So everyone who reads playing cards ultimately ends up coming up with their own system. Mostly they're based on what you learned, but also they become highly individual. Mind you, Lenormand is very similar, and very set by the images, so I hesitate to include it, but straight, modern playing cards are super individual.

That said, here's my basic outline of my system, so you can all play around with it. It means piecing together suit and value.


Spades - Troubles, division, and sometimes the element of air. These are things we cut away.Often these read similarly to Tarot reversals. For yes/no readings, these are the loud no.

Clubs - Work, the law, male or dominant sexuality, and formalities, the element of fire. This is about where we place our energy. This is about the grind, and investments of time, energy and effort. This can be a business like approach, and about getting what we put into it. In yes/no readings, this is a soft no.

Diamonds - money, good luck, rewards or harvests, the body. the element of Earth. Diamonds are about where we place our value. This is our most practical suit, diamonds can take a long view, but is about collecting rewards or getting payoffs. In yes/ no readings, this is your soft no.

Hearts - intuitions, feelings, the unconscious. Feminine or submissive sexuality. This is about what the universe is telling us. These are your "love" cards of course. Often these ARE positive emotions but not always. Things that we... understand but don't necessarily know. Connections, relationships, and how we interact with each other. In a yes/ no reading, this is your big yes.


Aces - The Seeds - these are about beginnings. Often these talk about work you put in now that pays off later, or things that are investments. Not a strong sign for anything you're in a hurry for, but it's a good start.

2 - The partner - This is about equal partnership, or finding balance. There's a back and forth to these, but also an isolated nature, the 2 halves forming a whole.

3 - The seedling - 3's are all about growth. These are things that are starting to pay off, often things you've been waiting for that is becoming something you can move with now.

4 - The house - This is where things live. That's which is close to your question or situation... in some ways family.

5 - The Crown - This is usually a great card. It's about getting what you want, but needing to live up to the responsibilities that come with it. "Heavy is the head..." and all that.

6 - The roads - These are open roads and clear paths. Things will fall in place for you to get what you want.

7 - The mind - These are about thoughts, plans, wishes and dreams. These are things folks are thinking about, but which they're not likely to act on. Coming up for someone else, they're things you might never know. For yourself, there can be some thought without action, but often this indicates a need for proper planning.

8 - People - A wider social group or network. This isn't usually about one person, but the community or social group as a whole.

9 - The Wilds - 9's are about unexplored territory. This is things that are or feel new or unusual. There's an element of risk here, but also excitement. Uncertainties abound.

10 - The Ladders - These are about taking things to the next level, or taking the next steps. Good gains but predictable.

Face Cards

Jacks - The Youth - This is about youth, inexperience, or impulsiveness. Often someone younger in a reading.

Queen - The woman - This often is mostly an indicator of where a womans mind is on a subject. Can also indicate intuition, or a sliding scale of kindness or compassion.

King - The man - Similarly to the queen, this can indicate where a mans mind is. Indicates dedication or a sliding scale of focus.

Now, the trick for playing cards is that they really do best when you pair them together. One card on its own doesn't help you much, but it's in the connections between the cards that really make it come alive. Hopefully this is enough to get you all thinking.

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