Mini tarot lesson: What’s the difference between the Two of Wands and the Three of Wands?


Sometimes it can feel like certain cards have overlapping meanings, and it certainly doesn’t help when their imagery is quite similar.

Especially when the tarot has so many other cards that are so distinct, each having a clear, bold personality, no matter how gentle their messages sometimes are.

So what’s with the Two and Three of Wands? Both can indicate looking ahead, future planning, and working towards a goal.

Both can also refer to expanding, growing, and stepping outside of your comfort zone, either to push towards the finish line or to bring a project or vision to life in an even bigger way.

And, to make it even more complicated, both can indicate an overseas move. Confused yet? Here are some tips to help.

The Two of Wands can indicate:

  • That you are getting clearer about your higher calling. Destiny is calling, and you’ll be feeling the pull to answer it.
  • That you’ve had your head, your heart, or your hands (or a combination of the three) in two different places for a while: maybe you’ve been holding onto a day job while trying to start an online business on the side, and now you’re feeling it’s time for your business to get a bigger role in your life. The Two of Wands indicates it’s time to start weighing your options.
  • That what you thought might be the end of something is really just the beginning. For example, maybe you’ve always dreamed of getting a short story published in a literary journal. Finally, your dream comes true and you see your name in print. But now that your goal has been attained, you find yourself asking, “what’s next?” And the great feedback you’ve been getting on your writing has you suddenly thinking that maybe a writing career is something you could work towards.
  • That you are starting to see that something has more potential than you might have originally thought. Say you started a blog and it was just a project to do for fun, something you thought your friends and family might read. And then one day you notice your traffic is increasing. And then your posts are being shared more and more. And suddenly you find yourself with a growing audience, and suddenly a whole new world of potential opens up to you that you never expected.
  • That it’s time to put an end to distractions. What is really keeping you from reaching a cherished goal? Are you too busy? Do you overextend yourself to the point where you can’t focus on your own priorities? The Two of Wands asks us to look at what we need to let go of in order to get to where we want to be.

The Three of Wands can indicate:

  • That it’s time to think big. Become a visionary and trust in your inspiration. New ideas and insights are coming to you to help you see how you can better share your talents with the world.
  • That it’s time to get out of your comfort zone. You’ve established yourself to some extent with a special skill, career path, or talent, but if you stay where you are, you’ll stagnant. This card is telling you to grow.
  • That it’s time to look at new horizons. If you are thinking of moving, or of getting noticed across the border – maybe you have a business you would like to expand into a new city, or it’s time for your band to tour – then this card can be a very affirming sign to go for it.
  • That an opportunity is going to come your way that will help you reach a new level in your career. It could also come in the form of an idea, like a flash of inspiration that can set you on a new creative journey.

Keyword cheat sheet:

Two of Wands:

Hearing the call of destiny; making a decision between two different paths; opening up to new potential; putting an end to distractions; finding a new beginning at what you thought would be the end.

Three of Wands:

Be bold; be visionary; get out of your comfort zone; look to new horizons; your ship is coming in; time to reach for new heights; expand your skills; share your talents with the world.

Hope this mini lesson helps! If you want to learn more about reading tarot, you might like my book, Going Beyond the Little White Book: A Contemporary Guide to Tarot.

Until next time,

Liz xo


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