Photos by Magenta
Over the next few weeks we’re going to unpack Lenormand a little bit. We’ll be building on our two card combinations, popular with our website visitors, and our guide to 3 card spreads by looking at 5 card and 9 card readings. Eventually building up to the Grand Tableau…and who knows, maybe an e-book!
Today we’ll start with the basics of 5 Card Lenormand readings and hopefully you will find some helpful tips to improve your 5 card readings along the way.
What are 5 Card Lenormand readings?
A 5 Card Lenormand reading is a type of card reading that uses 5 cards from the Lenormand system of cartomancy.
The 5 card reading builds on the simplistic 2 and 3 card readings, but with the addition of these extra cards. This means a 5 card reading can give the reader a more rounded idea of the situation at hand, when compared to 2 card combinations or 3 card readings.
The 5 card layout is generally approached in a few different ways. Today we will show you two different ways of placing the cards down in front of you, but both of these spread layouts contain a variety of methods to combine the cards in order to create a reading. This means there’s no one right way to approach 5 card readings.
Type of questions used in a 5 card Lenormand reading
Of course, the first thing to think about with any kind of card reading should be about the question being asked. In a 5 card Lenormand reading questions don’t have to be open questions. The more direct an answer you’re after, the better. This builds on the way 2 and 3 card readings are generally used.
Questions that can’t be answered with a simple “yes” or “no”, can also be used in 5 card readings. Especially if the reader would like a bit more detail in order to explore the topic further.
Questions that request action are also great. These questions give the reader a way to gain insight into what action should be taken in the context of the situation.
5 card readings also have the potential to give the “why” behind a topic of enquiry. So questions that ask for context to a situation and why it is happening are also great for a 5 card reading.
Popular 5 Card Lenormand readings
We mentioned earlier that we will show you two different ways of placing the cards down in front of you. This means the spread shape for a 5 card reading can be approached in two different ways and then depending on the spread shape, there are different ways of combining the cards to get a reading.
Comic book style – The 5 cards are laid out in one continuous horizontal row. It is a great approach to use when you have a question in mind that requires a bit of a detailed answer. For something that might require a bit of a description or maybe some action that could be taken.
The Cross – The 5 cards are laid out as a cross shape of three cards in a vertical row. Card four sits above the centre card and card five sits below the centre card. It is a great approach for a question that might need a bit of background or context. For example, what issues are in support of the theme and what issues are weighing down upon the theme.
How to do each 5 Card Lenormand reading
Now we know there are different ways to lay the cards out for a 5 card reading. We also mentioned earlier that there are a variety of methods for combining the cards, even within the same spread shape.
Lenormand cards are best read as a combination of noun, verb or adjective interpretations to make short sentences. This means where each card’s noun, verb or adjective meaning falls within the sentence could be different depending on how the cards are combined.
How to do The Comic Book 5 card reading
The comic book 5 card layout is generally read as a combination of all 5 cards. We mentioned earlier that there are different methods to read the combinations of cards, when it comes to combining the cards comic book style there isn’t one definitive right way. Here we have four different ways to combine the cards to make a reading.
One method of combining the cards is to read them from left to right, in a continuous line. The theme for the reading would be the first card, the one on the left, and then each card is combined in order to describe (and build on) the one that preceded it.
Another method is to read the centre card as the theme or focus of the reading. Then the cards are read from left to right (jumping over the centre) in order to provide the description.
A third method is called “mirroring”, where the centre card is the theme or focus of the reading and the cards immediately next to it to the left and right are combined (almost like a little two card reading) to provide a description, followed by the outer two cards. Again, the outer two cards are combined to provide a detailed description of the centre card.
With this “mirroring” method, the outer two cards could be combined first and the inner cards combined second, when providing the description to the central focus card.
How to do The Cross 5 card reading
The Cross is also read as a combination of all 5 cards. Remember that there are different methods to read the cards in combination. Here we have two different ways to combine the cards to make a reading.
One method of combining the cards in the cross shape is where the central card is the overall theme, or focus, for the reading. The cards that are to the left and right of the central card are combined to provide a description of the theme. Together the three cards of this horizontal line gives the current situation. The top card, the card above the central card, shows what is suppressing or pressing down upon the current situation. The bottom card, the card beneath the central card, shows what is supporting or raising up the current situation.
Another method is to read the central horizontal line within the context of time, moving from the left (the past) towards the future (the right). The central card is then the present. The vertical line is then read within the context of thoughts or actions. The card above the central card, the top card, is about thoughts and actions we know about and the thoughts and actions we don’t know about are shown by the card underneath the centre card.
Equally, the Cross could be read as a mix of these two methods. It’s all down to you, dear reader!
Remember that Lenormand cards are best read as a combination of noun + verb or adjective interpretations rather than all nouns.
Add some richness to your 5 card Lenormand readings
The important thing is to decide the question, the layout of the 5 card reading and which method of combining the cards before you start. We’ve described two different spread shapes today and that within each of the spreads, there are more decisions to make for the method for combining the card’s meaning. This should all be decided beforehand to help work out what the reading is.
For extra richness you could decide the theme in advance. Significator cards are quite a big deal in Lenormand. These are cards that you can pre-select and place down first or in the centre of the spread before you lay out the other cards. A significator card could be a card that represents a person or a theme you already have in mind, but equally it’s ok to not pre-select a significator card.
Finally, after the cards are laid out and the reading approach is decided, just notice what the general vibe of all 5 cards is. For example, are they mostly positive cards or negative cards? Notice if there is anything to say about timing, when looking at the cards as a whole.
There are many different ways to interpret 5 card lenormand readings, there is no one true right way to read the combinations of cards.
Deciding your question, the approach to doing a 5 card reading before you start will help with the combinations. As will making those sentences make sense by reading the cards as a combination of nouns, verbs or adjectives in the context of the question.
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