A “Chaotic Complex” Random-Variable Life-Reading Spread

A couple of days ago a client asked me if I have any “chaos-based” spreads. I replied that I don’t but then remembered that at an earlier time I had casually researched chaos theory, so I went back for another look. Although I have a few designs that nibble around the edges, I have none that specifically center on “initial conditions” and seemingly minor variables that can cause widely divergent outcomes within “dynamic systems.” I used to think that “chaos” in this sense meant that such systems (and situations) become increasingly disorganized over time (like the “Big Bang” theory), but found that it refers to an “inner organization” in the original conditions that is highly sensitive to subtle influences, such that it doesn’t totally disappear but instead “morphs” into other forms. So I decided to create such a spread.

In this layout, the “initial conditions” are represented by the topic areas that can be related to the question or situation. There are twelve, echoing the astrological houses or “departments of life,” and their meanings are loosely based on astrological principles. The “chaos factor” is provided by rolling a single six-sided die, and the “transition zone” between the question and the answer is formed by the six “Roll” (Random Variable) cards; depending on whether these cards are upright or reversed, they will point to one or another of the “Door” cards that will show the “outcome” of the matter. Except as noted below, only three of the 21 cards are read.

The idea is to pick the topic area that most closely relates to the matter at hand. After shuffling the deck in a way that allows for reversals, deal 21 cards face-down into the pattern in any order. Turn over the selected “topic” card to start the reading. Then roll a single die (the “chaos factor”) to identify a random variable that will further the narrative in one of six ways. Finally, locate the “outcome” card by following the arrow (“U” for upright or “R” for reversed) from the indicated variable to one of three “doors” that provides the answer. Read this series as a three-card “story” with a beginning, middle and end.

It’s also possible to cover more than one question in a single spread by rolling the die again for a new topic, although the risk exists of landing on the same “variable” and exiting through the same “door.” (This may or may not be a problem for the interpretation since such repetition could simply serve as reinforcement of a consistent root cause within the querent’s general life-circumstances). I’m thinking the potential overlap of influences would work the same way the multiple topic cards of the Lenormand Grand Tableau are handled.

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