The significator card is a card that “signifies,” the object of the spread. Once you have cards that you consider your significator, you have the cards that represent signatures that correspond with who you are.
The cards that represent your signature, are the cards whose signatures are your chief features. These cards do not change much, they change with us as we age and mature. Once we know and understand what our significator cards are, these cards take on much deeper meanings when we encounter them in our readings.
The origins of the significator card lie in astrology. The significator cards originally would describe things in a birth chart that were significant. If a planet or zodiac was powerful or outstanding in a chart the card that corresponds to that planet or zodiac would be the significator that one looked for in their tarot spreads.
Finding the significators
Depending on how one looks at things, different things may seem more significant than others at different times. Using different types of astrology and different levels of expertise in astrology will lead people to suggesting different significators.
When you do this for yourself you are going to need find a chart that has the astrological correspondences for your tarot deck. And a program that will erect a birth chart for you, preferably one that calculates astrodynes. I am purposely not going to mention the names of my cards, so as not to confuse anybody. The signatures of the cards in tarot decks vary greatly from deck to deck.
Almost everyone would agree that the most significant parts of our birth chart are going to be the most powerful planets and the most harmonious planets as well as the zodiac in which we find the sun, moon, and ascending.
The first thing I need to do is determine what it is that is significant to me. To do this I resort to my natal birth chart, calculated into astrodynes. In this chart the results of my birth chart are organized by power on the left and harmony on the right.
Then I have to go through my deck of tarot cards and discover which cards represent those planets. The cards selected will vary depending on the deck.
My most powerful planet is Saturn, as we can see at the top left of the charts. Anytime I find the card that carries the signature of Saturn in my spread I know there is a lot of energy of Saturn’s signature being added.
My most harmonious planet is Neptune, at top of the right column. Anytime I find the card that carries the signature of Neptune in my spread I know there is a more dreamy harmonious blending taking place.
The significance of your -ality
Everything in astrology is translatable directly to a Tarot deck. By understanding which things are significant to ourselves personally in astrology, we can add many layers of meaning to the cards that we use.
In astrology there’s quite a few significant things to watch out for. The most important of which, preeminent to even the most prominent planets, are the big three; the Sun the Moon and the Ascending signs. When I learned astrology these were called the three “alities.”
- Sun – personality
- Moon – mentality
- Ascending – individuality
To discover which sign each of these planets is in we’re going to have to look at my birth chart itself.
In my birth chart we can see that my;
- Sun is in Virgo
- Moon is in Scorpio
- Ascending is in Libra
Knowing this I am always on the look out for the cards that signify Virgo, Scorpio, and Libra. Particularly if I find the Sun, Moon, or Ascending in the same spread as their Zodiac as I find them in my birth chart.
While we have the chart out this is when I need to see what houses each of these planets is in. The houses define different parts of our lives. By noting which house each significator is in, I am am able to infer what parts of my life are going to be affected as well.
Using Astrology to choose a significator is a fun way to go about it. But it has been my experience that the card whose signature describes a persons cheif feature it’s not always given in their birth chart.
Sometimes it just takes honest reflection to choose your own significant cards. Perhaps try the chart method first and see if you agree with what that chart says. Perhaps you’ll even be able to see how your opinion appears to have grown from your chart.
The exercise of discovering my own significators was a worthwhile process for me. Having done the process once I found a way to engage just about every type of divination and occult study I have ever approached. Knowing which signatures are significant to myself gives each layer of discovery added facets and relationships.