When it comes to teaching Tarot to complete newbies, one question that always comes up right at the beginning is how they should shuffle the cards. They are afraid of doing it “wrong”, and on a logistical note they aren’t used to shuffling Tarot cards, which are often much bigger than regular playing cards.
As with most things Tarot, I think shuffling is a personal preference. It is all good, do what works for you.
However, I think it is useful to be consistent in the way that you shuffle, to turn it into a kind of ritual. Create a shuffling routine that works for you, and stick to it. In that way, you’re signalling to your higher self and the universe that you are about to read the cards, and you shift yourself into another mindset or state of being.
Also, if you have that kind of consistent practice, you won’t doubt yourself, or think that maybe you did it incorrectly, and convince yourself that you didn’t choose the right cards. You will have confidence in yourself and the cards that came up.
I personally like to shuffle the cards gently, the overhand shuffle, rather than bending the cards poker style. I don’t want to damage my cards. I concentrate on the question being asked and just shuffle until it feels right, until it feels like its enough.
Then I cut the cards into three piles with my left hand, and then put those piles back together, and deal from the top.
If I am reading for someone else, I ask them to cut the cards, rather than shuffling them. I usually then fan out the cards and have them select the cards for their reading as they concentrate on their question.
If you read for other people, you should decide how you feel about other people touching your cards. Again, it is a matter of personal preference. You can shuffle and draw for the other person. Or, if you want them to shuffle your cards, don’t be afraid to tell them how to do it, so that they don’t damage your precious decks.
If you feel awkward shuffling the cards, practice! When you’re watching TV, shuffle. It can be very meditative! Find a method that works well for you.