Spreads: Card Reading

The following is a collection of spreads that I have created to work well with the Masculine Archetype Deck. I share Active and Passive Readings

Major Archetype Spread

Active Reading

One of the best ways to get familiar with this deck is to focus on one Major Archetype and ponder how it appears in your life. This can make the Archetypes seem more real. For this Active Reading, go through the deck and pick one of the Major Masculine Archetypes (Warrior, Wizard, Father, Lover, or Sovereign) and the Shadow Aspects for that Archetype.

Take the time to consider your strengths and weaknesses with this Archetype. The Shadow Aspects can give you insight into unhealthy patterns you might have with the Archetype. It’s essential to come to terms with the Shadows. The key is not to suppress them, but find a balance between the two poles of the Shadow, and thus bring the Archetype to its fullness.

 
Exploring Archetypes Spread
  1. Your chosen Major Archetype
  2. The Underactive (-) Shadow Aspect
  3. The Overactive (+) Shadow Aspect

Exploring Your Shadows

Active Reading

Each of the Shadow Aspects lies within. Some might be more prevalent or troublesome than others. Observe which Shadow Aspects you struggle with can help you bring your Psyche into balance.

For this Active Reading, take out all the Shadow Aspects from the deck. (Aggressor, Coward, Know-it-all, Charlatan, Constant Rescuer, Deadbeat, Addict, Lost Dreamer, Oppressor, and Entitled Prince.)

You should now have a pile of just the Shadows. Go through the cards and pick out the two Shadow Aspects you struggle with the most.  Take time to inquire why you fall into the pattern of these Shadow Aspects more. 

You should now have a pile of just the Shadows. Go through the cards and pick out the two Shadow Aspects you struggle with the most.  Take time to inquire why you fall into the pattern of these Shadow Aspects more.

 

Exploring Your Shadows Card Spread
  1. Your first chosen Shadow Aspect
  2. Your second chosen Shadow Aspect

The Shadows Journey

Active Reading

This Active Reading is centered on the Hero’s Journey. Start by taking out the twelve stages to the Hero’s Journey and place them in order.

Go through the deck and pick a Shadow Aspect you want to work with and place it at the Status Quo. Take out the associated Major Archetype and put it at the end of the journey, Integration.

Move the Shadow Aspect through the different stages of the Hero’s Journey. At each stage, ask yourself how it might relate to your own life. For instance, when the Shadow is at Refusal to Change, you might ask yourself what actions you have refused to take.  When you are at the Supreme Ordeal, ask yourself what task could you undertake that would finally break you out of your unhealthy patterns with this Shadow. 

If you get stuck at a stage, sit with it and meditate on what you could do to move forward. It’s ok if you can’t see past a certain point. These things can take time. 

The Shadows Journey Spread

1-12.  The Hero’s Journey cards

13.  Your chosen Shadow Aspect

A card a day

Passive Reading

Another way of getting familiar with the Masculine Archetype Deck is by pulling one card a day. Then throughout the day, try to notice if you encounter anything that evokes that card’s feeling.


This can help you recognize the different aspects of the Archetypes or the Hero’s Journey. At the end of the day, write down any insights you had.


You can gain a lot by pulling a daily card for a week, month, or more. It exercises your ability to recognize the archetypal forces in your life.

The path and the obstacle

Passive Reading

This two-card spread can help when you feel unsure of how to proceed. The path could be asking a friend for advice, changing your situation, or starting a new project.

The best path forward can sometimes be unexpected; try to stay open. The Obstacle could be internal or external. You might need to change patterns, release friendships that don’t serve you, or dedicate to personal practice to get the change you seek.

  1. The Path
  2. The Obstacle

Taking Action

Passive Reading

Use this spread to help see past the noise and take that next step. It can help you untangle the thoughts you already have and evaluate the best course of action. 

Start by going through the deck and picking a card representing where you are now around the situation at hand. Don’t choose a card for where you want to be, be honest about where you are now.  Set the card aside and put it into position 1. 

Reshuffle the deck and pick the other four cards. 

  1. Now: Your starting point (pick this card and then shuffle).
  2. Challenge: What are you facing?
  3. Strength: What will help you move forward
  4. Aid: Where you can find help. It can be through a person, place, or action.
  5. Outcome: What might unfold.

Moving Forward

Passive Reading

Tragedy can strike, leaving you feeling befuddled. When significant shifts happen, it is an excellent time to reassess. This spread is useful to gain insight into what to take with you while the dust settles. I have found this reading helpful after a relationship breakup, ending a job, or failing at something and want to know what to do next. 

1. What to keep
2. What to set aside
3. What to learn