AUTHOR’S NOTE: I have little faith in any of the tarot timing methods I’ve tried, including several I created for my own use. Unless an occurrence is limited to a known time-frame (e.g. an action with a firm deadline for closure), its destiny can be too fluid and present too many variables to pin down to a concrete end-date, and the farther out in time we project an event, the less reliable this becomes.
The timing of a hoped-for development is often uppermost in a sitter’s mind once the probability of its emergence is established. But “When will it happen?” is almost always less predictable than “Will it happen?” One useful method I have seen is to remove the uncertainty from the forecast by simply asking “What will transpire in this matter by the end of next month?” If nothing significant shows up in the cards, or if it does but fails to occur as augured, the outlook can be bumped out another month or more with a follow-up reading. The diviner would do well to remain relatively noncommittal on the subject of timing as long as credibility doesn’t suffer.
Drawing on my recent spread that employs a “prepared” deck with four elemental sub-packs, I would first learn the general “area-of-life” for the reading rather than seeking to know the specific question. The nominal focus areas are shown in the “cheat-sheet” below, which I would present to the querent for consideration in making this call. The best approach would then be to pick a duration that acknowledges the normal trend for the type of inquiry planned, such as a week, month or quarter ahead, and try to discern the conditions that will prevail during the chosen interval, after which the likelihood of achieving the objective can be examined in detail.
After the temporal “window” is determined, I would choose the elemental sub-pack that relates most closely to the sitter’s area of interest and lay out a small spread to explore contingencies that may present themselves during the period. For example, suppose the querent is job-hunting but doesn’t have any prospects lined up that have already been put into motion. I would take the “Fire” pack and lay out three cards to determine 1) Overall employment climate in the seeker’s area; 2) The kinds of opportunity that may arise; and 3) the likelihood of snagging one of them. The “opportunity” angle must be handled with some flexibility since the card drawn may not be precisely aligned with the individual’s preferences. This template can be applied to any area of life by substituting another parameter for “employment” in the first position, and using the topic-specific elemental sub-pack.
If overall chances for success look good for the period in question, a more detailed spread can be performed using the whole deck to assess the nature of the assumed opportunity and the best approach to take in appraising its suitability. Five cards would be about right for this initiative. This broader (and perhaps longer-range) perspective can be targeted for a subsequent time-frame if deemed appropriate.