The basic idea is to lay down eight cards representing a gate, and a
ninth card representing some new impulse, force, or personality
seeking entrance through that gate into the querent's life.
5 1 2
6 9 3
7 8 4
9: The enterer at the threshold. The new phenomenon seeking to
8: The threshold. The immediate conditions of entrance. The chink
in the armor of everyday reality through which the new impulse seeks
5-6-7: Boaz; the pillar of Strength. Longer-term conditions which
provide the impetus for manifestation.
2-3-4: Jachin; the pillar of Establishment. Longer-term conditions
which provide the means for the new manifestation to become permanent.
1: The capstone: The key to the architecture of the whole thing. The
new phenomenon in its highest possible aspect.
This spread works best, in my experience so far, if reversals are not
8 tends to represent rather transient phenomena, while 2-3-4 and 5-6-
7 tend to be more lasting in nature. 1 may be the most lasting or
transient, depending upon context.
I've found that comparison of the various elements of the gate,
noting conflicts, harmonies, contradictions, imbalances, etc. is the
key to reading this spread. One finds out how the new event will pan
out (if it will at all), how lasting it will be, and how it may come
to an end.
Optional: 10th card, placed to the side, representing the
gatekeeper. A sort of irresponsible genie, who plays Ape of Thoth to
card 1, but must be reckoned with nonetheless.