Let's talk about reversed cards

this is something in tarot that I see few people doing besides myself, probably because it takes so long to get the gist of it. with upright cards it’s easier to interpret because the imagery is oriented upright, while reversed is based mostly on interpretation. but once you get into the swing of the interpretation process it becomes a valuable asset. that’s the problem with the deck I have now is the images on the upright and reversed side are straight forward enough to limit interpretation. though with 156 possible cards to show up, every possibility is covered for the most part.

here is a couple of ways to interpret reversed cards

a more sinister variation of the upright card- I used to get this with the hermit reversed, when it would talk about me at a stage where I physically was social and, was emotionally isolated with zero empathetic ability. though this doesn’t work with every card, and not all cards should be interpreted this way. Royalty cards are a good example of this in place but keep in mind that they aren’t always playing out this way.

Inverted-here the meaning is inverted or completely opposite of the normal card. this is the case of strength(though a reversed interpretation can even be understood as overly strong, ie tyranny or primal consciousness.) where it instead means lack of strength and weakness of will. this works well for most cards

SUPER POWERED-this is a variation of the card to where the power of the card is taken up to the tenth degree. if you ever see the tower reversed as the outcome of a situation abandon the subject of the reading and change whatever you are doing, do not stop, do not pass go, do not collect 200 dollars. the tower reversed often is a perpetual manifestation of the upright card. it’s like the energizer bunny of destruction. this works well for cards like strength, the tower, and some of the minor arcana.

diminished-here the meaning is the same but the power of the card is diminished. this is mainly in the minor arcana cards.

loss of equilibrium- this is cards that focus on balance, such as temperance, justice, 2 of disk etc. the natural balance achieved by the upright card is lost in the reversed, which in itself can give way to multiple interpretations as to which way that scales have tilted.

this isn’t the only ways the reading can manifest, but these are the most common ones I can think of

in future post I will go over some of the revelations I’ve had about each of the reversed cards.

My tarot skills wouldn’t even make me $20 at the end of the pier, so please yes to that, look forward to it! :slight_smile:

For the most part I agree but always remember that the other cards in the spread help give context to the reversed card.

One example you listed was Strength/Lust reversed, I usually reverse the meaning but will have a similar effect as the way you interpret the cards. Strength reversed is weakness, if say the Emperor was next to it (which also has a similar nuance when reversed) it could imply a misuse of his power or a lack of strength to use his power correctly.

The Emperor reversed can also point to lack of power, loss of position, misuse/abuse of authority depending on the context of the cards surrounding it and the nature of the reading.

A card like the 4 of Wands usually has a pretty steadfast reversed meaning such as delays in completion or running into stumbling blocks. A card such as the 4 of Disks/Pentagrams can point to one losing their stability. The Sun and Universe/World apply him this fashion as well to their respective meanings.

I do have to disagree about the Tower reversed as I’ve found it to have the same meaning but to a lesser degree, it’s actually more favorable to come across this card reversed as it points to beneficial destruction which allows one to grow rather than total devastation the upright meaning holds. I usually equate the upright meaning as the “I can’t believe this is happening!” card.

Death is another card where the reversed meaning denotes a negative change or resistance to change as well as being blocked or weighed down.

A card Like the Devil is always better to have reversed as it points to breaking shackles and facing ones own self imposed bondage.

The 2 of Disks I always apply a reversal of fortune so to speak, the 2 of Disks is harmonious change upright and unbeneficial change when reversed.

As I’ve said before I choose not to use them reversed and rely on the elemental dignity of the card instead as a positive fire/Wand bracketed by two water/Cups means a lessened effect or reversed meaning. The same goes for Air and Earth while Air and Fire would be complimentary.

To each their own of course and find what works for you.

Thanks for giving some insight to this guys.
For me I usually just let the cards speak to me whether they’re inverted or not.
Usually if they are inverted though for me it tells me that positive aspects of the card are still there but there’s usually a warning that comes along with it.
Like TWF’s example of The Emperor.

to me reversed cards are a sign of interference, something is in the way. the energy of the card is not flowing properly. it’s like buggy computer code, you have to debug it to get it working right. look at the overall spread and surrounding/connecting cards and find out what is throwing the energy flow off of the reversal and then resolve the problem and then do another reading.