On the Judgement Tarot Card and Self-Compassion

If you’d rather listen to me talk through this post (not word-for-word) please click below!

I was dopamine scrolling on TikTok the other night and came across the video below all about healing and the way that it is less about becoming perfect and more about offering kindness to the imperfect parts of ourselves.

And it immediately reminded me of Key XX – Judgement.

I have gone through what I call “Judgement Periods” before where it seems like no matter what deck I use for a reading that card shows up. The first time I see it I think I understand the message, but when it pops up a 2nd, 3rd, 4th time I am reminded that most spiritual lessons are learned via lived experience which you just don’t get from reading a guidebook or seeing a card once in a spread.

The scene in Key XX – Judgement depicted in the Rider-Waite Smith (RWS) Tarot deck is one that is honestly, sort of scary. I mean….look at it. An Angel, burst forth in a smattering of gray clouds resurrecting what appear to be gray, zombies who have just been freed from their coffins.

Key XX was just one of those cards that went over my head every time and left me sort of stumped. The imagery just didn’t seem to have much to do with judgement, the concept.

Eventually though, I noticed a pattern: every time I pulled the Judgement card I had convinced myself that I was a bad person, I was feeling immense guilt or shame, and I was intent on changing myself to be more “healed” or “aligned” or whatever other spiritual-bypassing language you wanna throw in there.

What I have come to understand about Key XX is this:

We heal when we stop trying to be something other than what we are. We heal when we accept our past selves as they were and offer them kindness rather than JUDGEMENT.

So here’s a Tarot Spread for those times when you are caught up in a shame spiral, being hard on yourself, and cannot find a way to self-compassion.

  • Start by pulling the Judgement card from your deck. Sit with it. Journal about what comes up. Read a few descriptions of the deck. Then, move on to the next step.
  • Shuffle your deck and pull three cards to go with the three following questions. (or come up with your own questions!)
    • What part of me needs attention, compassion, kindness or care?
    • Which past version of me is bringing up feelings of shame, guilt, depression or anxiety in this moment?
    • What need or want was that version of me trying to obtain by being the way that they were? How can I meet that need or want now?

Thanks so much for reading! Let me know how the spread worked for you by commenting or emailing me at q@thesagescorpio.com

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