Cleansing / Dedicating a Tarot Deck for Healing

cleansing and dedicating a tarot deck for healing work

Have you ever picked up an old used tarot deck and sensed that it has a heavy, ‘sticky’ or otherwise negative energy? All decks absorb the emotional energy from readings and if not cleansed regularly, the readings you do with them could potentially become affected because of the energy exchange between you and the deck in a reading.

I’ll hold my hands up and tell you that I don’t always dedicate a new tarot deck with a ritual before I read with it. A quick cleanse and prayer and away we go!  That said, believe it is a great idea to do a proper dedication ritual for any deck you plan on using for healing and/or magick.

Whatever your beliefs are about this, in my experience, as well as from what I’ve learned from talking with other Tarotists, the majority of us do a proper cleanse before working with a second-hand deck. This is because we are all sensitive to energy and used decks often feel ‘sticky’ energetically speaking, even when the condition is pristine.

When it comes to doing vibrational healing with the cards it is absolutely necessary to work with a cleansed and dedicated deck. The reason for this is that you want the pure, undiluted archetypal energy for your workings – without sticky emotional interference. You don’t need to rush out and buy a new deck but you do need to cleanse and ‘reboot’ any deck previously used for fortune-telling.

If the deck is very ‘sticky’ or feels ‘sad,’ I like to use a soft cloth to wipe each of the cards individually. I do this in a meditative state with candles lit and soft music playing in the background. Yes, it is time-consuming but you will have a deck that is not only energetically pure – you will have bonded and your deck will feel like an extension of your own energy.

A quicker way which is suitable for new decks or decks that haven’t been used for emotionally involved readings is to smudge the deck with sage, sandalwood or frankincense. Additionally, you may want to leave it on an amethyst crystal cluster over night. Amethyst has cleansing properties and is one of the few self-cleansing crystals (i.e. does not need to be cleansed).

Once the deck has been cleansed you need to dedicate it to your healing work. How you do this is entirely up to you. Call on relevant angels, spirit guides, power animals, deities, great auntie Bessie in spirit – Anyone you feel you want to be involved in your healing work.

And hey, this could even be your introduction to working with spirit guides if you have never tried it before. Some of our guides and angels have been with us since before we were born but that doesn’t mean you can’t invite someone new. Who or what inspires you? Where is the healing power? What form does it have? Call on it by any name you choose.

‘Is this really necessary?’ I hear you asking. You won’t know the difference until you try! When you connect with spirit this way you open another channel for healing as well as guidance. That can only be a good thing.

Once you have cleansed and dedicated the deck, please make sure you store it safely. A wooden box is ideal. Wrapping your cards in silk is also good. Keep an amethyst with your Tarot healing deck at all times for continuous transmutation of negative energy. As amethysts are self-cleansing, you won’t have to spend as much time on deck-cleaning chores… more time for healing, reading and playing!

Click HERE for a list of my favourite Tarot Healing decks!

Blessed be!


Comments 7

  1. Thanks, Kevin. You get to a certain point when it gets very impractical to store the decks in anything other than their original boxes. About half of mine are in bags and the rest in their original boxes – all stored away safely in drawers and cupboards… except for my working decks which are currently scattered about the flat 🙂

  2. I love all of your articles and your insight. I definitely look forward to it all compromised in a book. It's one I would pick up.

    I ran all my decks through Sage smudging this past weekend and I've got dozens of decks. It was time consuming, but I didn't mind as I felt the energy lifting off of the decks and myself for that matter. I can't imagine having a wooden case for each deck. I don't know if you personally do that, but how do you feel about the cards being kept in the original boxes they came in? And put away in an area where they are covered.

  3. Hi Ruth, Thank you for your kind words. Yes, there is a book in the making.

    Sorry to hear about your haunted deck. I do believe each deck has a spirit connected to the creative manna flowing from the deck creator at the time of making.

    This is the reason so many people share first impressions of the Thoth deck for instance.

    If you have cleansed the deck and talked to the spirit of the deck and nothing changes, then you're simply not meant to work with that deck. Maybe it's meant to be passed on to someone else.

    I recently did this with the Sacred Rose Tarot myself. It's a lovely deck – not just for me.

    Blessings, Lisa

  4. Yet another great post of yours, Lisa! Hope you are planning towards a book!
    I have one deck which i am truly starting to suspect of being hunted! Albeit all my skepticism, out of 60+ decks i currently have – not to mention numerous decks i gave away – my beautiful Turkish Kumray decks is plain… evil. I tried it all – smudging, keeping it in the sunlight/moonlight, interviewing it – whatnot… but =, nah… so i keep it in its beautiful wooden box, as its gorgeous, but sadly i can't read with it.(Whatever you ask – it throws Devil/Death/Tower at you…)

  5. Hi Theresa, Thanks for adding to this discussion. The original post is by no means comprehensive. Smoky quartz is WONDERFUL for transmuting heavy energy – especially grief. Citrine is another crystal that is self-cleansing. Putting the cards back in the right order is another great idea. Cheers 🙂

  6. Another thing that I like to do with a deck that feels stale: put the deck back in original order. Then let it rest under some crystals. I have a big smoky quartz that I use for especially mucky decks. I also have a selection of citrine, quartz, amethyst and rose quartz as well. Crystals are GREAT for stabilizing the energy.

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