December 2001 Tarot Spreads 

The Dreidel Spread by Diane Wilkes (with an assist from Rachel Pollack)

I am always trying to find ways to combine elements of Judaism with my tarot studies.  Chanukah begins on December 10th this year, and I thought about different spreads I could create that would be appropriate and meaningful for this holiday.  The Dreidel Spread was my favorite. -- DW 

The dreidel is a four-sided spinning top. On each side is a Hebrew letter: "Nun," "Gimel," "Hay," and "Shin."

The letters stand for the phrase, "Nes Gadol Hayah Sham - a great miracle happened there."  The dreidel is also used to play a Chanukah game.  Each player places something (chocolate "gold" coins, raisins, nuts, etc.) into a kitty, and the players take turns spinning the dreidel.  If the dreidel lands on "Nun," you win nothing, you lose nothing.  "Gimel" means you win everything in the kitty. "Hay" means you win half of what is in the kitty, and "Shin" means you lose, and must put more into the kitty.

The Golden Dawn associated each of these letters, interestingly, with a Major Arcana card.  Nun, which means nothing, is associated with Death; Gimel is the letter of the High Priestess, and Hay and Shin are attributed to the Emperor and Judgment respectively.

This spread combines the game meanings of the letters with the tarot cards associated with them.  I recommend using only the Major Arcana for this spread.  If the card associated with the position appears anywhere in the spread, you should ascribe more weight to this position.  Feel free to pull another card for clarification for this position, if needed.  Use this spread when you feel you have something challenging in your life that you need to overcome, or an issue that you want to resolve in the most successful, triumphant way possible, in keeping with the miracles that Chanukah commemorates.

                                                                    6

                                                                    2

                                                    3                               4

                                                                    5

                                                                    1

Card One - Ante           What do I need to contribute to the kitty in order to "play"?

Card Two - Nun            What is "stuck" in my life that I should be transforming in some pivotal way?

Card Three - Gimel        What is hidden deep inside of me that could, if accessed, make me more successful?

Card Four - Hay            What in my life would be more stable and powerful if I exerted double the effort into
                                       making it so?

Card Five - Shin            What do I need to sacrifice in order to move to the next level or achieve victory?

Card Six - Miracles        What is the message the Universe has for me in connection with my present issue?


Spread and page 2001 Diane Wilkes