# A 3-Card Yes-or-No Preponderance Matrix

One of the perennial debates among tarot enthusiasts is how to answer yes-or-no questions with the cards. Conventional wisdom is that the tarot can’t resolve such matters effectively, and they should therefore be avoided. But I believe it can successfully address any subject if a proper methodology is applied. The one-card pull is usually too inconclusive to be convincing, especially since the “yes” or “no” nature of most cards can be a little fuzzy. It is possible to look at the overall “complexion” of the cards in a spread and make a yes-or-no judgment. However, there is a more persuasive technique in the Lenormand system that relies on a preponderance of positive, neutral or negative cards in a spread to sway the answer one way or the other (for example, more positive than negative cards will produce a “yes” answer). All that remains to use it with tarot cards is to come up with a table of nominal “yes-no-maybe” cards, something I did quite a while ago. (Other tables are available on the internet that can be used instead if you like them better; my table is shaded toward the positive based on the inherent nature of the cards along with their Pythagorean/Qabalistic number and elemental temperament .)

This matrix provides a graphic presentation of three-card pulls and the resultant yes-or-no answer derived from them. There are seventeen iterations each of “yes,” “no” and “maybe”  which combine in a number of different ways. In pondering the usual symmetry of such permutation tables, I think there should probably be eighteen, but I ran out of space and there is enough definition in what is here to be able to extrapolate for any missing combinations. The middle card in each set exerts more influence than the flanking cards, which can be read in any order. Elemental Dignities can also be used to moderate the contribution of the middle card, “for good or ill.” By way of illustration, if a “Trending No” card is flanked by two elementally friendly “Maybe” cards, it is strengthened and becomes a more forceful “NO!” while two unfriendly cards would weaken its potency, yielding a more tempered negative trend.