A Halloween Tarot Reading – And Thoughts On Drawing the Death Card
This goal-setting Halloween Tarot spread also makes note of ways to interpret the Death card in line with ancient Celtic beliefs.
Halloween is a time of reflection, celebration and honouring the ancestors. In your own practice, you’ve no doubt had personal experience of how the energy can flow when you focus on the spirit at Halloween by doing something like a Tarot reading.
Origins of Halloween
Modern Halloween celebrations descend from the Celtic festival of Samhain, a feast that signalled the close of the harvest and the start of winter, which lasted roughly six months until May.
This was a very important time of year for the Celts because their lives changed significantly at this time. As pastoral people, during the summer and spring cattle were kept in the fields and communities were only loosely connected. In the winter months the community came together in houses, living together to protect against the cold. It was during these winter months that elders would pass on their knowledge, and men and women would have the time to court their future partners.
As a transitional period in the year, Halloween was believed to be a time when the barriers between the human and supernatural worlds came down, and therefore the various supernatural entities that influenced daily life were recognised as part of the festival. The festival also had connection with the dead, as the Celts did not believe in Heaven and Hell, but rather thought that the dead dwelled with the supernatural beings. It is clearly these ideas of the dead and the supernatural entering the mortal realm that are the basis of modern Halloween traditions.
The Celts associated many transition points with the lowering of the veil between worlds, for example the time between one day and the next (hence the concept of the witching hour), and the meeting of the sea and the shore.
Why do a Tarot Reading?
The spiritual significance of Halloween in the Celtic tradition makes it an ideal time to conduct a Tarot reading to help orient yourself for the future.
With the idea that the veil between the mortal and supernatural worlds is weakened during this period, spiritual information and guidance should be more available, and your intuition stronger, giving your reading a bit of extra potency.
While our lives may not change as dramatically as that of the ancient Celts between summer and winter, this also represents a new phase of the year for us as we enter the winter and holiday months, and look forward to the start of our new year and the period of renewal and recommitment to goals that this brings.
The period from November 11 to January 11 is also considered in Numerology to by the ‘holy trinity’ months of the year when the cosmic energy of the universe is at its most potent, and is also most accessible to us as creative being who construct our lives. This means that the period from November to January is a great time to start on the path to new goals.
Halloween Tarot Spread
If you do choose to do a Tarot spread for yourself on Halloween, a goal setting spread is a great choice to help focus you for the coming months. Try an eight-card spread, with two cards at the top of the spread sitting vertically, and below them two lines of three cards.
The very top card will relate to the essence of your ultimate goal. For example, you may think that your goals is to make more money, but this card should give you some insight into the deeper reason why this aim is important to you. Is it prestige and a feeling of being valued, a desire for increased security, or something that you want that you think only money can buy. This card should help you gain deeper clarity on your goal.
The second card that sits below this card should give you guidance on the main practical steps that you should take in order to achieve your goal, whether it is changing jobs, asking for a promotion, or finally starting that side business.
The next three cards in the top row should illuminate the main obstacles that stand between you and your goal. The first of these cards will speak to your mental obstacles, beliefs or insecurities that are holding you back. The second card concerns emotional obstacles and matters of the heart that might lead you astray. The third card refers to practical obstacles that you might need to overcome or wait out.
The final three cards provide guidance on how to overcome the obstacles in your path. The first will show you how to shift your mindset to unblock yourself. The second will suggest how you can recognise and work through emotional challenges. The third will reveal practical opportunities that you can take advantage of.
Drawing Death in a Halloween Tarot spread…
It is not at all uncommon to draw the Death card during a Halloween reading, not because of the connection between the holiday and the dead, but because the Death card is often a sign of the end of a cycle and a new beginning, much like this time of year. If it does bring doom and gloom to your reading, it is more likely to be a sign that you are failing to reap the rewards of something you have planted – in Celtic times if crops weren’t harvested promptly, many in the community could die of hunger.
Rather than being a harbinger of doom, the Death card should call you too let go of things in the past that no longer serve you and focus on building the future that you desire. But it should also be a reminder that you can only reap what you sow, and that how well you plant your seeds in the here and now will have a huge impact on what you reap in the future.