The roots of tarot are as mysterious as the practice of modern divination itself. Though some claim that the practice can be traced back to ancient Kabbalah, there is no real evidence of this kind of usage. Several countries use tarot decks as simply playing cards. For those interested in interpreting the world around them in more mystical ways, carrying a pack of 78 cards is not always feasible: enter the Golden Thread Tarot app.

GoldenThread Tarot app screenshot via GoldenThread Tarot blogGolden Thread Tarot

Tina Gong
Free
iOS, Android

Golden Thread seems to draw its name from the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, or just The Golden Dawn. Which was a magical group committed to studying the occult and metaphysics in in the late 19th century. However, you don’t need to give yourself over to dedicated study of the paranormal to enjoy this present day interpretation.

Before this app, I was a total newcomer to tarot, but the app was immediately welcoming and friendly to use. The illustrations, also available on the physical Golden Thread deck, are simple and adorable. (My favorite is the Hermit card.) Everything about the app is straightforward, and it’s easy to navigate to the various options.

On the welcome screen (which does welcome you with different messages), or “Mirror,” you are given the option to see your daily card or to reflect on the pattern of feelings about your previous questions asked, feelings about the cards you’ve saved, the suits you draw most often, the topics you’ve drawn cards about, or to view lessons.

In your daily draw, one card is flipped over. This is reset each night at midnight. It’s become a soothing routine in my own life. I wake up, I read that day’s tarot card and reflect on the possible meanings, and then I go about my day. For every kind of reading, you can click on the card to be given more of a description about the card. It’s never lengthy and seems to touch only on the basics of the card’s meaning. This is great for a beginner like me, but I can tell it wouldn’t be as useful for someone who knows a lot about tarot.

You can also save the card. If you choose this option, the app will ask you to rate your feelings, from positive to negative, about the card or spread, and then to choose emotions from a select few that you associate with the reading. These are saved in your log and add to the statistics about your overall experience within the app.

In addition to the daily draw, you can get a reading. Readings can be for a category (love, work, money, health), or a general question. You then type your question into the app and choose what kind of spread you want. There’s a single card, three card (past, present, and future), or a full spread. The app also asks if you want to do the reading on the app or with physical cards. If you choose physical cards it walks you through how to lay out the spread. If you choose digital, you must flip each card after it has been drawn. These too can be saved to your log.

My favorite part of the app are the lessons, but there simply are not enough of them. The app presents them to you with fun animations in its simple color scheme, but only offers the most superficial level of knowledge.

All-in-all, Golden Thread has been a delight in my life and has encouraged me to research more about tarot on my own. Maybe I will even go get a real reading. If you’re at all interested in divining your own future, I suggest you start with this app.