Every now and then, a client will either comment that they get a particular card “all the time” or they will ask why a particular card turns up in their readings a lot. All applause to them for paying attention to that detail. If something in a reading catches your attention and feels significant, then it is significant. You are always doing the right thing to follow those feelings and try to understand the message the repeat is trying to highlight.
Repeating cards are one of those things that capture your attention. The next step is the harder part; How do you know what that significance may be?
The most important, most common and most widely known reason is the repeat card carries a message or lesson that we just are not hearing. Messages will indeed repeat until we perceive, understand and enact them. In that case, repeating cards are like a hand on your elbow guiding and nudging you in the right direction until you get to the right place for the next lesson (and maybe the next repeating card) to begin.
Over the years I’ve noticed a couple of other things that could contribute to a card putting in frequent appearances.
A repeating card might serve as validation or act as a general signal over and above the card’s individual meaning. One particular card can act as a special “attention all personnel” announcement. Whenever that particular card turns up, it might be a general signal that the reading has extra importance. A particular card may keep showing up in order to reassure you that this is a real-deal message for you. For example, when I was first learning Tarot, the Empress would turn up frequently when I was on the right path, doing the right thing to bring this new aspect of myself into the world. In this instance, repeating cards are happy and reassuring. Repeating cards are not always a “hey bone head listen up already!” message. Sometimes it is “yes, this is for real” or “yup, THAT is the right direction” messages.
For a professional reader it can be more statistics than message; Doing lots of readings means pulling lots of cards. There are only 78 cards and some of them are going to repeat. Repeating cards due to volume is a good problem for a professional reader to have.
There is a thing – I’ve heard it called “entrainment.” I see it all the time at parties. As the party goes on, the tired folks feel a little more energized and the stressed people feel a little more relaxed. Everyone starts to resonate with the vibe of the group, the place, or the occasion. When that happens, one or two cards will emerge as the repeaters, turning up in a large percentage of the evening’s readings. I’ll often mention it when those repeaters turn up, in case guests are comparing notes later. I’ll point out how the shuffles, all the possible layout positions, the different types of messages all combine to give each person a totally unique message, even if everyone and their uncle is getting, lets say, the 3 of cups.
Repeating cards are multitaskers. The Fool popping up lately is a combination of things. It might be the volume phenomenon, because I’ve been doing draws here, for the youtube channel, clients, a party. Still, it hasn’t been THAT busy. The Fool card keeps coming up, in different settings, with different decks. I think I’ve finally figured out what message was trying to get through. It didn’t sink until today, but I’m going to another unrelated blog after this to enact it. Repeats can signal more than one message at a time The other hint was for this very post.
A repeating card can also be a personal “significator.” Do you see aspects of yourself in the card? Do you feel like it could be a symbol of you? It may turn up frequently to symbolize you and your relationship to the reading rather than its typical stand-alone meaning.
If a card keeps turning up time and again ask yourself:
- Is there something I am missing? What am I missing the card keeps coming back to try and tell me?
- Does this card resonate with me or my spirit guides? Could this simply be a hint that the reading is particularly important or a reassurance the message is truly spirit-given?
- Is it just from the party / place/ situation where the reading is happening?
- Am I getting too many readings too close together. Do I need to take this answer and wait, give thing give things time to evolve?
- Is the same card carrying more than one message? I am I keeping the separated correctly?
- Is this card a lot like me? Could it be a stand in for me and showing my part in things rather than giving a whole separate message?
When you see a card showing up time and again, don’t worry, be patient. The extra bonus meaning will become clear in time.