Develop Psychic Abilities by Learning to Read Oracle Cards
Learning to read oracle cards is a great way for beginners to develop their intuitive skills and work with their spirit guides. Getting started with using oracle cards can be intimidating. Having a guide and a few tips will help you in the initial phases of learning to read oracle cards.
I have put together this Oracle Cards for Beginners Guide based on my own experience of learning to read and working with oracle decks.
Oracle Cards for Beginners: Choosing a Deck
Working with a deck that you are comfortable with is key, especially as a beginner. I suggest taking your time to thoroughly search online stores for cards that you connect with. Here are some tips and suggestions on how to choose your first oracle deck.
Where to find your first deck
The best way to find your oracles is on the web. Online stores such as Etsy and Amazon offer hundreds of decks to choose from. These stores also provide customer reviews, photos, and information to help you make your decision. Another way to search the interwebs for the perfect deck of oracle cards is by Google search. A quick Google search of “Oracle Deck” will produce a wealth of links to online stores, publisher websites, reviews, and blogs. In my research, I stumbled across this list of The Best Oracle Decks. I own many of the decks on the list and believe they are wonderful oracles for beginners.
Things to consider
There are countless oracle decks to choose from. Each deck has its own unique artwork, theme, style, and overall energy. They also vary in specs such as the number of cards, size, quality of materials, price, etc. It’s great to have options, but too many can be overwhelming. With that in mind, be sure to take your time to review and research many decks before making your decision.
For me, the theme and artwork are most important. When considering the theme, I suggest choosing an oracle deck that represents general life lessons or a theme that you are very familiar with. I would not advise acquiring a deck based on astrology or spirit animals if you don’t already feel connected to one of those themes. My first deck was The Wisdom of the Oracle Deck by Colette Baron-Reid. This is a wonderful deck of oracle cards for beginners. The theme is fairly general and the artwork provides plenty of intuitive cues on each card. At the of the day, it is important to choose a theme that you are comfortable with.
The artwork is another major factor to consider. It’s important to connect with the artwork and that it stimulates your intuition. This is why online research is important. Search for pictures of the cards in each deck to get a good feel for them visually before making your purchase.
Cost, Quality, and Size
Obviously, cost and affordability are going to play a factor for the majority of folks reading this blog. The good news is that most oracle decks can be purchased on Amazon or Etsy for less than $25. This price point makes this particular divination tool accessible for most.
Personal preferences that should be considered when selecting your oracles are the quality and size of the cards. I would suggest that the theme and artwork are most important, but the overall feel and comfort that you have with the deck are going to ultimately rule your decision. A good way to ascertain this type of information is to read the customer reviews. This will give you an idea of what others think about the value of a particular deck.
Oracle Cards for Beginners: Preparing Your Deck
I vividly remember how I felt when my first oracle deck was delivered to my door. Saying that I was excited would be an extreme understatement. I couldn’t wait to rip open that Amazon package and feel the power of my very own oracle cards! I have no doubt that you will experience this same level of excitement when you receive yours too.
As exciting as it is, there are a few steps I suggest you take before working with your oracles. These steps involve clearing, charging, and connecting with the energy of your new deck of cards. This process will likely take a few days.
Clearing the energy
Before arriving at your doorstep, that oracle deck has been handled by many people. It has also been in a lot of different spaces. As you can imagine, there is going to be a cornucopia of energies attached to your shiny new cards. Energetic cleansing is highly recommended. Here are some simple methods
Say a little prayer
Don’t underestimate the power of your own desires. You can clear the energy connected to your oracles by simply setting your intention and saying a prayer. Here is an example.
“With gratitude, I claim this oracle deck and release any negative or low vibrational energy that does not serve me. I invite my creator, angels, guides, ancestors, and higher self to cleanse these cards with pure love and divine light.”
The smoke from burning plants and herbs has been used for centuries to clear negative energy. Guess what…it still works! Grab your bundle of dried herbs and burn them over your new oracle deck. Waft the smoke onto the cards with your hand or a large feather. When performing a smoke clearing ritual, I also suggest reciting a short prayer. The prayer above will work for this method as well.
Charging the Energy/Vibration
Believe it or not, divination tools get tired too. These tools work with our intuition through the flow of energy. It makes sense that they need to be nourished and recharged occasionally. Here are a few easy charging techniques that I use.
The moon, its reflected light, and its gravitational pull on the Earth are energetically powerful. I often use this energetic power to feed the energy of my oracle cards and my crystals. Capture the powerful moonlight by placing your items outside or near a window. I prefer to do this during a full moon. I place my cards outside on my balcony overnight so they get max exposure to the nourishing moonlight.
We are all familiar with the energy boost that comes from catching some sun rays. Your oracle will appreciate that energy too! Just place your cards outside in the sun or near a window for a few hours. Just like that, you will have a rejuvenated oracle deck.
Develop a Relationship with Your Cards
This is huge!! Once you have cleared and charged the energy of your deck, it is time to get to know it. This is kind of like taking your cards are a few dates and getting to know them before jumping into an intimate moment with them. My suggested courting techniques are as follows.
Learn the Authors Suggested Meaning for Each Card
I read Oracles intuitively, but it’s not the only way that I bring forth messages. The author gave each card meaning and a purpose. It is important to know the original intended purpose for each of the cards in your deck. Sometimes, cards are brought forward to be read literally or for the author’s intended message. So don’t throw away that little book that comes with your Oracle Deck.
Touch and Study Your Cards
It’s time to get physical! I don’t suggest that you start reading yet. Almost, but not quite yet. Take the time to thumb through your deck and study the artwork of every card. Allow yourself to feel the energy of the card. Notice all of the intricate details of the card. These details are going to be a big focus when you begin reading them for messages.
When I am getting to know a new deck, I try to make personal connections with different aspects of the artwork. By doing this, I am more in tune with the specific message that is coming through. For example, if a card has an illustration of a flat, green landscape, I associate that with taking a trip or vacation to a destination that is rural. This is a connection that I make because of my own personal experience and understanding of that visual.
Always keep in mind that spirit is likely to “speak” to you in ways that you understand. Words and references that come through Oracle readings will connect with your own personal interpretation. It will then be up to you to translate those references to the person you are reading for (if not yourself).
Continue the Personal Connection
When it comes to Oracle cards for beginners, connection with the deck is everything. The goal is to connect with the literal meaning, your own personal frame of reference, and your intuitive understanding of each card in the deck.
Find your card
During the process of connecting with my very first Oracle deck, I made an interesting observation. I realized that I was being shown the same card over and over. In fact, there were times that card would jump from the deck as I shuffled. It was card #17 “The Fates”. This card was brought forth an uncanny number of times. I felt compelled to claim it as ‘my card’ in the deck. Almost instantly after claiming The Fates as my card, I felt fully connected to the deck. I understood its energy. That is when I knew it was time to move forward and start working with it intuitively.
How to find your card
Start by asking your oracles to provide you with daily messages. Shuffle the deck and pull a card. Do this a few times throughout your day. Next, do a few three-card spreads for yourself. The three-card reading can be a past, present, future reading, or on a specific area of your life. As the cards come forward, you will begin to connect with the intuitive meaning naturally. Remember, these messages are for you, so you will be able to connect the dots as well as anyone.
You will likely notice some of the same cards coming out over and over. Make note of the ones showing up the most. If you feel uniquely drawn to a specific repeating card, it is safe to say that is “your card.” Claim it and get ready to start reading!
Oracle Cards for Beginners: Learning to Read
Finally! It is time to learn some techniques to help you read Oracle and develop your psychic abilities. In this section, I will reveal my own methods for reading Oracle cards intuitively. I am pulling back the curtain and teaching you everything I know.
Set Your Rules
I know it’s tempting to jump right into a reading, but there are a few housekeeping items to address first. Set some rules and standards for how you handle different situations and occurrences.
Jumping cards are cards that fly out of the deck when you are handling/shuffling. Some readers believe that jumping cards are meant to be in the reading while others just put them back into the deck and keep shuffling. Determine how you handle these cards early on and be consistent with it.
Reversed/Upside Down Cards
In Tarot, reversed (same as upside down) cards offer a specific message. The card takes on a completely different meaning when reversed. With Oracle cards, the understanding of how reversed cards are read is not as clear-cut. Some authors will include specific messages for reversed cards. Many don’t. It is your choice as a reader whether you do or don’t read them differently.
How are you going to decide which cards you pull for a spread? I learned early on that I was receiving claircognizant directions from one of my spirit guides (Deb). I would have a number or word pop into my thoughts that would tell me which card to select. When I listen to and trust these directions, I find that the readings are always on point.
You will likely have your own methods. Some readers shuffle the cards until spirit tells them to stop and then select all cards from the top of the deck. Others will spread the deck across their alter and pull the ones that call to them. Figure out your method for selecting cards and roll with it.
Connect with Your Sitter
Without an energetic connection to your sitter, your reading is dead in the water. Every time that I read someone, I ask them for permission to connect with their energy and spirit guides. I do this even though it is often implied. The action of asking and receiving verbalized permission gives me a greater level of connection.
Once I have permission, I will repeat their name along with my own name. I also imagine my energy field expanding into their energy field and surrounding them. If I know the sitter, I may also close my eyes and let images of them flow through my mind’s eye. The key is to be fully relaxed while setting the intention to connect in order to bring forth messages and guidance that will best serve your sitter.
Different Reading Spreads
There are so many spread variations and types of readings. An Oracle reading can be general or dedicated to a specific area of the sitter’s life. Love and career readings are a few examples. I suggest searching for a few different Oracle spreads that you are comfortable using. To keep things simple, stick to a three to five-card spread at first.
My ‘go-to’ Oracle card spread is the past-present-future reading. I draw three cards and read them from left to right, starting with past and ending with future. There is also the option of developing your own reading formation and understanding of what each card represents within the reading. When doing this, just make sure that you and spirit are on the same page.
Oftentimes, messages will resonate with your sitter, but they will want more information to clarify or get additional guidance. Don’t hesitate to pull a few more cards for clarification. Before pulling the clarifying card, ask a specific question to be answered. For example, if a card representing the present is indicating that the sitter is currently concerned about a legal situation, you may want to ask spirit what the sitter needs to know about this situation. You could also ask about how the process will play out. Be sure to check out the visual exercises and explanations below.
Oracle Cards for Beginners: Interpreting the Cards
Here we go. It’s time to get into the nitty-gritty of how to interpret the images we see and the feelings we get from them. Unfortunately, I can’t teach or explain how to feel or how to interpret what you feel. What I can do is tell you what to look for and provide some examples about how to connect it to an intuitive message. Let’s look at how I would process a three-card (past. present. future) reading.
What’s the Overall Feel of the Spread?
Before feeling into each Oracle individually, get a general feel for what the cards are showing you collectively. Is this an upward trajectory from past to future? Does it seem like a bumpy road or is everything smooth sailing? Do you feel positivity and confidence or fear and worry? Getting this overall feel of the reading will help you interpret the message coming through each card.
You will know that you are properly connected to a sitter’s energy if your general interpretation resonates with them. This affirmation will energetically propel the reading. Remember to ask your sitter if they can understand each message as it comes through. This will keep the energy properly connected and moving forward.
Exercise #1: Reading the Spread Collectively
Check out the spread below. Pretend this is a past-present-future reading (left to right). What is your overall feeling? Is this a happy reading full of positivity and confidence? Or do you feel something else? If you ask me, I feel the sitter (for these cards) would be coming from a place of complete turmoil. They are seeking and unsure. The good news is that the future is bright and full of opportunities. This reading feels like it starts in a difficult place, but has an upward trajectory to a better place.
What is Each Card Telling You?
Once you’ve felt into the general energy of the spread, the next step is to work with each card individually. Study the details of the card and be aware of which details your eyes are most drawn to. With a quiet mind, allow feelings and thoughts to flow naturally. Messages will come to you with a word, thought, or past memory popping into your mind. That’s how the energetic connection will bring information through. Trust and go with it.
Exercise #2: Connecting with Each Card
As you look at the first card (Storm Warning) in the photo above, how do you feel? What details of the image are your eyes drawn to first? Does the number on the card feel important? How about the words on the card? Keep in mind that any part of this card could have an important message attached. This card could have a few different messages for the sitter.
Here are some things that the image in the card on the left could represent for me. My intuition would guide me as to what the message would be for a specific sitter.
10 – If I was drawn to this number, I could deduct that the card is referencing a situation that started or was resolved in October. The number could also indicate that the sitter was/is dealing with something that stems from a situation that occurred in their developmental years.
Mountains – The mountains remind me of two places I have lived in my life. California and Tennessee. If these mountains are calling to me, I would deduct that the sitter has a connection to one of those two states.
The color blue – If the color blue speaks to me on this card, I would likely be getting a message about the sitter dealing with depression or anxiety in the past. Blue could mean other things when it is present on different Oracles, but on this card, I would think of it as representing a mental health situation.
Did you connect with this card in any way? I recommend writing your connections and feelings for each of the cards in your deck in a notebook. Doing this will give you something to reference later.
Using Clarifying Cards
As I previously mentioned, there may be occasions when messages need additional clarification. Your goal as the read is to provide the sitter with the clearest guidance and information possible. Don’t be afraid to pull additional Oracles in order to go a bit deeper into the message. This can be done with cards from the same deck or a completely different one.
Exercise #3: Reading the Spread Collectively
In the first photo, let’s pretend these are the base cards for a love/relationship reading (past-present-future). As we did in exercise #1, feel into the overall theme of the reading.
My interpretation is that the sitter for these cards is in a relationship that is at a crossroads but has the potential to move forward successfully. What did you come up with?
Exercise #4: Interpreting the Clarifying Cards
In this next photo, imagine the Oracles in the top row represent clarifying cards for those directly below. Feel into the clarifier in relation to the card below it. How does the card in the top row bring clarity to the message of the card beneath it?
Here are my general interpretations of the original and clarifying cards.
Original card: The sitter has been in a lengthy relationship. It has been good, but their partner seems unfulfilled and is not always present.
Clarifying card: The sitter has learned to be patient with their partner. I feel like they have learned this through meditation, yoga, or possibly therapy.
Original Card: The relationship has come to a point where a major decision needs to be made. Is it time to part ways? That is the big question on their mind. The sitter is fearful that divorce is the only way forward.
Clarifying Card: The sitter knows what they want but is not sure if it can be achieved. They want to repair the relationship and to move forward in a way that provides them with the love and support that they need from their partner.
Original card: The road forward with their current partner is possible and likely. The chessboard from the previous card is present here. This indicates to me that the sitter and their partner have a good opportunity to “play on”. It will be a long journey to get where they need to be. It will require focus, patience, and support from friends & family.
Clarifying card: The fortune cookie and the pearl from cards #6 and #29 respectively are now perfectly balanced. This indicates that it is possible for the sitter to achieve their desired outcome. I am drawn to the dress being worn by the woman and it reminds me of a wedding dress. The scales indicate a contract or a legal situation. It seems to me that the sitter and their partner are likely to remain in their relationship and better days are ahead.
Oracle Cards for Beginners: Pro Tips
You now have the basic skills to get you started on the path towards being an expert Oracle Card reader. All you need to do is apply what you’ve learned here, practice (a lot), and be patient.
As a bonus, here are my top tips for getting started
- Don’t pull too many cards
- Trust your intuition
- Clear your deck’s energy between readings
- Pull a card for yourself daily
- Develop rituals and routines
- Meditate to center your energy before working with your Oracles
- Always use the deck(s) that you have the strongest connection to
- Practice on close family and friends
- Store your main deck close to where you sleep
- Use crystals such as Amethyst, Quartz, Tiger Eye, Selenite, etc. when working with your Oracles
- Treat your Oracles with reverence and respect
- Have fun and enjoy the ride
Final Thoughts on Oracle Cards for Beginners
I hope that this guide to oracle cards for beginners has helped you build on your ability and desire to read oracle cards. If you have found this resource useful, please feel free to share it on your social media platforms. I would also love to hear your thoughts about this article and how you read the cards in the exercises. Please comment below.