Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Cartomancy Technique for Answering Yes-or-No Questions

When I was a fledgling card reader in that long-ago age before the invention of the internet and psychic phone lines, most psychic readings were done locally and in person. The dynamics of the psychic reading were different in those days. There was  little interaction between reader and client prior to spreading the cards. Once the cards were on the table, and the cassette recorder was flipped on, the reader would begin to describe important events in the client’s life. The client might grunt approval or groan in surprise, but for the most part questions and comments were saved for the last few minutes of the session. Today, in our modern world of chat readings and per minute charges, psychic readings have become much more focused, and the guiding force behind the modern reading is the question.

Perhaps the most common type of inquiry heard from clients today is the yes-or-no question…

  • Will I get married soon?

  • Is my spouse cheating?

  • Does he love me?

  • Will the business deal go through?

  • Will I get the job I just interviewed for?

I suppose it is not surprising. Today’s clients come to a reader with specific questions, and expect definite answers.

Questions that are phrased in this way can be challenging for the reader because yes or no answers are not always so clear-cut in the cards. The reader is forced to make a judgement call based on the combined influence of all of the cards in the spread, in conjunction with intuition  Not all readers are comfortable with this process, and many choose to avoid answering predictive questions that require a definite yes or no response.

The yes or no questions have always been popular with my querents, and over the years I have experimented with various spreads designed to answer these specific type questions. I have tried spreads that include techniques for divining yes or no by way of card number combination, or card suit designation or suit color predominance.

I’ve discovered that, for me, the most successful technique is to draw an odd number of cards, and base the answer on the predominance of red or black cards. The red cards are considered affirmative, and the black cards are negative. I find that drawing five cards work best for me. I think three cards are too few, and seven are too many.

I use the following guidelines for interpreting the answer based on predominance of card color:

  • 5 red and 0 black = definitely yes, the outcome is predetermined

  • 4 red and 1 black = most likely yes, there could be free will involved, or the querent may be able to influence the matter

  • 3 red and 2 black = probably yes, there is definitely free will involved, or the querent may be able to influence the matter

  • 2 red and 3 black = probably no, but the querent may be able to influence the situation for a more positive outcome

  • 1 red and 4 black = most likely no, there is small room for change, but the situation is not hopeless

  • 0 red and 5 black = definitely no, it is not meant to be

Once I determine the answer based on card coloring, I then interpret the line of cards to provide more information about why the answer is affirmative or negative.

On the subject of the predictive reading, I think it’s important to note that the cards can foretell the most likely outcome of a situation based on the current influences surrounding the matter. I believe that it is a mistake to ignore the influence of free will in a reading. In the end we create our experiences with our expectations and our choices and decisions. I believe very little is preordained, and that  for the most part, we write our own destiny.
Example Yes or No Spread

In order to provide an example of this type of reading, I just drew five cards off the cuff as I’m writing this post. I asked the question: Will Barack Obama be re-elected president of the United States?

This example was originally posted on September 19, 2012, on my old blog, prior to the election.

The three red cards, and two black, tell me “probably yes.” The outcome may not yet be determined, but the situation looks hopeful. Obama has more work to do to convince the American public to award him with another presidential term.

Now we can look at the specific meanings of the cards to glean more information from this spread. The 9 of Hearts and 5 of Hearts show that Obama was the hope for a bright future. The 10 of Diamonds and 10 Spades show that his financial plan for the country fell short, and the 8 of Spades shows that this caused a general sense of disappointment for the American people.

We could delve even deeper into this spread say that there is dissatisfaction (10 of Spades) with both the financial (10 of Diamonds) and the Health care (8 of Spades) agendas. I also have the impression from the predominance of red cards at the start of the line that expectations were high when Obama was first elected president. It may have been nearly impossible to meet those exaggerated expectations. The 8 of Spades as the outcome shows that his accomplishments and failures are being carefully analyzed, and a final decision is pending.

I have had tremendous success using this yes-or-no method. I suppose you could say it’s because in most cases the answer could go either way, and in a sense this allows me to hedge all of my bets. But in practice this spread has been very rewarding because it can show where the querent may have the power to influence the outcome of a situation, and the cards will usually offer advice on how to turn the tide for a more favorable outcome. I find this to be infinitely more practical and useful than simply telling a querent “yes or no.”


  1. So if I asked a career question and drew mostly hearts and one diamond, does it mean that my question didn't quite register and I should redo the draw? It would seem career related cards are diamonds and clubs. Am I mistaken? Thank you!

  2. Hi thanks for this post very useful! One question: in this spread, the last two cards are spades, so not nice cards at all, if we don't look at the colors of the whole spread, the anwser would be different?

    Thanks again!

  3. If you love your career, if it brings you joy, or if creativity is expressed through your work, I would expect to see hearts.

  4. No, the detailed answer is based on the actual cards, so the colors simply support the answer from the individual cards.

  5. If I draw 5 cards should I count how many black and how many red cards are there or should i just look at the colour of the last card that tells the outcome? Also some black cards have possitive meanings. For example 10 of clubs means happiness and good fortune... But it's a black card. Should I count it with all the other negative ones (black ones) and answer no to the quarenrt if they are more than the red ones?

  6. When I set my intention that a predominance of black cards will indicate a "no" answer, I do not consider whether the individual black cards are positive or negative. All carry equal weight in determining the answer. Then I will look at the individual card meanings to help me determine why the answer is "no," and if the outcome can be influenced by the querent in a positive way. Now having said that, I also strongly believe that you should honor your intuition when interpreting the cards, including how you feel the black cards should be interpreted in the final answer. As for the final card, for me it carries equal weight when examining the ratio of black to red, but it carries added significance when I evaluate the individual card meanings.

  7. Hi Kapherus
    Thank you so much for sharing your yes/no method. It has worked well for me! I noticed you have used 3-card and 5-card spreads for yes/no answers. You stated 3-5 cards can be used. Is there a rule of thumb to determine the amount of cards to use? Do you use more cards for certain questions?

  8. Stephanie AprillianoJuly 28, 2017 at 4:00 AM

    Hi Kaph,
    Thank you for this post (and others regarding the 5 line) I nearly use the 5 line for every reading as the answer is always relevant. I don't want to pester you too much, but I was wondering if I could have some advice.
    I did a reading for a friend regarding someone she is interested in.
    I drew a 5s 7h 10h Ah 9s. She certainly has some (ethical?) barriers between her and the guy. The 3 hearts really stand out to me. Would you read the ace as a greater number than the 7&10? What do you think about the hearts surrounded by the spades? Would you consider this the barriers?
    I occasionally like to play around with the 5 line spread and pull a 6th card after I read, to see if it holds any relevance. I pulled a jh.. would you recommend any weight to the jack or coincidence?

  9. I usually won't pull a 6th card for a Line of 5, but I will sometimes expand the reading with a couple of additional cards. For example, the 10H is an excellent card to appear in the center of a relationship spread. It is surrounded by hearts, which further enhance it's positive vibe. It's a card of wish fulfillment and emotional gratification. Unfortunately that troublesome 9S ends the line. The 9S when surrounded by really good cards can indicate something that fated, or meant to be. I always like to confirm this idea because it can also suck the positivity out of surrounding cards, and show loss and disappointment. What I would suggest is to draw two additional cards to expand the meaning of the 9S. Place one card above the 10, and the other card below. If other unfavorable cards appear, the AH + 9S could show a false start. But if good cards appear it confirms that the hand of fate is involved in the outcome of the matter. Of course fate is fickle, and sometimes when it brings us what we ask for, it isn't always what we expected. As for the JH, I don't believe in coincidences.

  10. Thank you! I haven't heard about expanding on the reading like this before.
    I did see a second card, and if I recall correctly it was a 10D. So JH on top and 10D on bottom. She mentioned previously that he was traveling (West, even)

  11. Do you only interpret the YES/NO based on the colour? For example, if I asked a question about a job and got 4 clubs and 1 diamond card, I see that it is mostly all black cards... but the clubs often talk about work, so would this be favourable in this case?