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Who are You in the Tarot? How to Calculate Your Tarot Code

In my previous post, 13 Ways Writers Can Use the Tarot, I introduced self-discovery as the 13th way storytellers can find inspiration in the cards. In this post, I will elaborate on the process of uncovering all the details you need to learn your very own “Tarot Code.”

Your Tarot Code

Your tarot code is a collection of cards that have been assigned to you from birth, annually, monthly, and even daily, if you so choose to honor a consistent routine. Self-discovery practices are often popular among writers like you and me. From journaling to blogging, fiction writing to poetry, many writers find connection and creative inspiration through reflection and rumination. The cards you will uncover in your tarot code can provide additional points of reference to your personal, creative, and even spiritual journey.


Your Life Path Number and Soul Card

Your Life Path Number is the number resulting from adding together the digits of your birth date and reducing them to their smallest figure. As an example of the easy math, my birthday is December 1, 1976, or 12/1/1976. I can perform simple math to determine my Life Path number, which in numerology represents my personality and talents.*

1 + 2 + 1 + 1 + 9 + 7 + 6 = 27

Now, let’s reduce 27 to its simplest form:

2 + 7 = 9

Therefore, nine (9) is my Life Path number, and in the tarot, that corresponds with my Soul Card, which is The Hermit (9 or IX).

* Staff. (2022b, October 3). Life Path Number Calculator.


Your Birth Year Card

This one is another easy card to turn over. Simply add the digits of the year you were born. This number corresponds to your Birth Year Card. Here’s mine:

1 + 9 + 7 + 6 = 23

2 + 3 = 5

Therefore, my Birth Year Card is The Hierophant (5 or X).


Your Age Card

Apply the same easy math to determine your Age Card. This is a card you can lean into until your next birthday. As an example, at the time of writing this post, the year is 2023. Therefore, I am 46. Here’s the easy math:

4 + 6 = 10

1 + 0 = 1

Therefore, I get two Age Cards this year! Wheel of Fortune (10 or X) and The Magician (1 or I).


Your Year Card

To calculate your Year Card, which is the card of the collective—everyone’s card for this year—you simply add the numbers in the current year. At the time of writing this post, the year is 2023; therefore 2 + 0 + 2 + 3 = 7, The Chariot (7 or VII).


Your Big Three Zodiac Cards

Here’s where the repetitive math stops, and the calculations become more interesting. Your Zodiac Cards are those Major and Minor Arcana tarot cards that correspond with the signs of the zodiac. Although you will have many cards assigned to your natal chart, also known as a birth chart (a map of the sky on the day you were born), your Big Three are the most common and they correspond with your Sun, Moon, and Rising signs.

To determine your Big Three, you’ll need to know three things: your date of birth, the time of your birth, and the location of your birth. Once you have this information, you can enter it into a system that provides free natal charts. My favorite free natal chart resource is the website Café Astrology. The web address for the free report is

After you discover your Big Three, you can identify the Major Arcana card that corresponds with each sign. My Big Three Zodiac cards are Temperance (Sagittarius), The Emperor (Aries), and The Lovers (Gemini).

What are yours? After retrieving your natal chart, review this table and determine your Big Three Zodiac cards.

Who are YOU in the tarot? Now that you know, you can display the cards as anchors to help inspire you and remind you that YOU were written in both the stars and the cards.

And writers: this type of self-discovery through the tarot doesn't stop with you! Use this method on your fictional characters as you are deciding their path in your stories, and you can uncover details about them that even YOU the author didn't suspect.

In her more than thirty years as a storyteller and visual designer, Amanda “Mandy” Hughes has written and designed over a dozen works of literary, Southern Gothic, and women’s fiction under pen names A. Lee Hughes and Mandy Lee.

Mandy is the founder of Haint Blue Creative®, a space for readers and storytellers to explore, learn, and create. She holds a Bachelor and Master of Science in Psychology, and she has worked as an instructional designer for nearly twenty years.

When she’s not writing fiction, Mandy enjoys the movies, theater, music, traveling, nature walks, birdwatching, and binging The Office. She is a tarot enthusiast who uses the cards to enhance creativity and foster wellness. She lives in Georgia with her husband and four sons, two of whom are furrier than the others (but not by much). Visit her website at and follow her on Instagram @haintbluecreative.

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