Friday, 21 December 2012

Yule Blog Hop | 12 Oracles of Christmas

Hello and welcome to my blog *plumps up the velvet cushion on best chair*  You may just have moseyed in here by chance or be studiously working your way through the 22 blogs taking part in this Yule hop.  Christiana Gaudet is the blog before me and Arwen Lynch is the blog after me.  Whichever way you reach me, I am really pleased to see you here!

My blog focuses on the Tarot court and the theme of the Yule blog hop is 'Christmas Presents'.  So I thought that my Christmas Present to YOU on this blog is a short slideshow (featuring the Courts - of course!) outlining 12 great Tarot and Oracle decks that you might want to PRESENT to yourself! Maybe as a little treat to yourself for just GETTING THROUGH THE SEASON WITHOUT RESORTING TO MURDERING A FAMILY MEMBER :-D

Grab  coffee and enjoy the show!

Monday, 17 December 2012

30 Day Tarot Challenge | Day 2

DAY 2:  What was your first deck and why/how did you get it?

The first deck that I bought was back in the 1980s and it was a Marseilles Tarot.  I bought it, not because I was drawn to the artwork, but because it was the only Tarot deck that I could find in Glasgow.

Why did I get it? I can't remember what spurred me into buying it....probably a desire to be Solitaire in Live and Let Die ...... or maybe an episode of Tales of the Unexpected?

Thursday, 13 December 2012

Dark Moon | Haindl Tarot | Pixie's Astounding Lenormand

So I thought that since it was the dark moon before Christmas it would be a good idea to see who is going to be helping me get through this stressful - but fun - time.

I selected the court cards from the Haindl deck - the first proper deck that I bought myself, before I started learning the cards properly - and using a card from Pixie's Astounding Mlle Lenormand as an amplifier.

Monday, 10 December 2012

30 Day Tarot Challenge

Beginner's Tarot Mind!
I found this over on Tumblr at the end of last week and thought that it might be fun to do.  However, I won't be making blog posts about myself on a daily basis, but will take 30 days in total to do the challenge.

The challenge originated here:

So the first question is:

Q1:  What got you introduced/involved in Tarot

Like lots of people, I had a dabble with the tarot when I was much younger.  I bought a Marseille Tarot deck from a lovely bookshop in Glasgow (John Smith & Sons) which sadly went defunct with the arrival of Borders and Waterstones in the city.

I couldn't read them without referring to the LWB!  It was a lot of fun, but I didn't really gel with the images on the cards - but there was simply no choice around at the time.

Everything was going swimmingly with my readings until I did one that indicated The Empress (ie my mother) was going to be the Incoming Influences and in the likely outcome Temperance Rx indicated that I might be unwell.  Well, who wants to be ill? I put the cards away and forgot about it.

Within weeks, my appendix burst spectacularly and I was rushed into hospital.  On discharge from hospital, I was looked after by my mother.

I know.


I was ill for 10 weeks after the operation - a swab had been left inside me.  I thought I'd never feel well again.

So the cards were put away in a bag in a drawer and never looked at again until....

I watched a TV programme with Jane Ross and Michelle Knight.  Michelle was teaching Jane to read Tarot cards and I just fell in love.

Tefcat on the Children of Artemis website recommended that I join TABI to learn how to read properly.

I joined.

And TABI went on to form a core part of my Tarot development :-)

Now - YOU have a go!

Friday, 7 December 2012

2013 | Getting Ready!

The Dream Enchantress Tarot
Lo Scarabeo
Next year is 2013.  It's less than 30 days away!! I *know*.  WHERE did 2012 go?!

If you add up the digits in 2013, you can see that it's a six year - the Lovers.  Which means, to me, that we're all deciding what we REALLY want next year.

Oh sure, we can have nice shoes and buy as many handbags and bottles of perfume as the bank manager will allow, but really, that hollow feeling inside you won't be filled by a new lipstick.  Or even a packet of Kitkats.

Looks like next year is going to be about making better decisions to help us fill that void and raise our spritual consciousness.  Man.  *waves hands about like a drug-addled hippy.  Or Keith Richards.  It's sort of the same thing*

But what of your personal odyssey in 2013?

Monday, 3 December 2012

SFX Challenge | Game of Thrones

A while back I stumbled upon a site called SFX and a competition that they were running for people to design Tarot cards incorporating the characters from the Game of Thrones books (or TV show).

Since MY Game of Thrones is a nod and a wink to the OTHER Game of Thrones I thought that I'd share the finalists' images with you (with permission from SFX)

There are a few here that I'd LOVE to see worked up into a Tarot deck, they have such nice technique!

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Lunar Elipse Spread | The Result

There was nothing to see of the penumbral lunar eclipse up here in Scotland.  By the time the moon had risen over the hill behind the house, it had been over for a couple of hours. Pity!

Undeterred, I carried out the Lunar Eclipse Spread from the other day, using my beloved DruidCraft.  Who was hidden in the shadow of the world?  The Hermit.

I like this card, but it's not something that comes up for me much in readings.  I don't feel as though I'm much of a hermit!

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Lunar Eclipse Spread

Please click on image to visit
Alexander's site
Tomorrow night is a lunar eclipse (28 November) - the last one until April 2013 - and it's a wonderful event to witness.  What makes it very special, for me, is that hardly anyone looks up at the skies these days - perhaps lovers, foxes and those of us who have to travel by ferry :-)  People are trudging home from the pub or work, usually looking at the ground....and I'm sitting in the garden hugging a mug of tea for warmth, staring at the sky.

During a lunar eclipse, the Earth's shadow falls across the face of the moon, turning her cool white face into a warm, earthy blush.  The red moon is magnificent to see!

It's a humbling, awe-inspiring event, guaranteed to remind you that you are but a tiny speck on a big ball spinning in space!

Here's a fun spread to do during the eclipse.

Monday, 19 November 2012

Meet the Courts | Alexander Daniloff Tarot

Come on in to the wonderful Italianate, medieval-inspired world of Alexander Daniloff! *throws open the door*.  This glorious Tarot is still very new to me, but I wanted to share his Court Cards with you so that you can see why I am so enamoured of this man's work!

There is no accompanying book with this deck, but I don't think that this detracts from the cards as a working deck at all. It's very RWS-based in its imagery.

Without further ado, TADAAAAH! Here they are!

The Swords Courts
As you can see, the common colour to the Swords Courts is black - quite in tune with the suits associations with grief and loss.  But black is powerful, threatening... also, makes you look slimmer :-)  There are lovely pops of colour in these cards too - and love the raven perched above the queen! I already spoke to Alexander Daniloff about the Page, with is artfully hidden HEWGE sword here.

They're all looking the same way, to our left.  They have the sort of dark expressions that one might associate with the suit - although the Queen looks downright sneaky lol!

The Cups Courts

Check out the delightful aqua and blue hues of the Cups, less obvious in the King perhaps.  Unlike the Swords, this family all face to the right.  I adore the big clumsy-looking Knight and love how the Queen of Cups slides her gaze to him!

The common colour for the Wands is green - reflecting the liveliness of the living Wand.  The Wands Knight looks like a character from The Far Pavilions (not read it? read it. I luffed it.) The Wands look predominantly out to the left other, like the Swords.  Apart from the pesky Page who looks to the right! Look at the sad-looking lion skin belonging to the King of Wands.  He's skinned the Cowardly Lion from the Wizard of Oz.  And the Queen - with her golden ripe harvest and fiery ram's fleece....... The Wands are scrumptious!

The Pentacles Courts
I think that this might be my favourite family in this deck because, if you look closely, the Pentacle in each card is different.  The Page has a game, the Knight has a coin, the Queen has a globe-like sphere and the King's Pentacle is part of the trappings of his wealth, his robes.  I love the Elephant and Castle on the escutcheon that makes up the King's torso.  This is where the lack of a LWB can be a little maddening lol! Mind you, I've seen fairly significant symbols go unmentioned in lots of LWBs, so there's no guarantee that I would be any the wiser if Alexander had included one.

From a bit of an internet trawl, the elephant is associated with strength.  And castles with defence - so strength and defence might be their motto?  And yes, I'm also aware that it's the name of a significant junction in London :-D

All the Pages are depicted as youths with banners representing their suits, standing on boards.  They have a small area of influence.
The Knights are depicted behind helmets and shields (in the Germanic style).
The Queens are depicted in a similar shield shape and have playing card suit references
The Kings have their coat of arms as their torso.

Each card has its associated astrological symbol prominently placed to the foot of the card, which makes these cards lovely to use as Significators based on astrological references. The poor Pages have, of course, no astral real-estate and so have no astrological symbols. Don't blame Alexander, blame the Golden Dawn ;-)

Knights, who are traditionally mutable, have frilly moveable fronds around them
The Queens who are cardinal are in a human-heart shaped vignette and are before a swagged entrance.  Cardinal signs are the entrance signs (first signs) encountered when looking at astrology of Courts :-)  Look, I'm trying to help pin the associations here lol!
The Kings are fixed, as denoted by the cityscapes in their thrones.

Oh there is so much else that I want to add about these characters, but I shall save it for another day!

So what do you think of them? Love them? Loathe them?!

*whispers* it had better be love or you and I may have to break off our engagement :-D

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Hors de Combat | The Queen of Pentacles

I have been under the weather with the Noro Virus and it has been ghastly.  I freely admit to being a bit of a drama queen, but honestly I hate not knowing which end of my body to drape pathetically over the loo.

It is on the way OUT - if you catch my meaningful drift - so I thought I would take a look at a suitable Tarot Court to help get me back on track.

Because it's a health issue, I'm choosing from the Pentacles family.

I'm going to go for the Queen of Pentacles because I am feeling pretty sorry for myself and want to some ideas about how best to look after myself.  The Queens are all about nurturing, so the Queen of Pents should be the very gal to help me out.

I'm using the Queen of Pents from my new Tarot from Alexander Daniloff.  Which I am luffing to DEATH.

Here she is:

All the Queens are presented in this 'gallery' format.  I hope to be able to show you the Court Cards very soon so that you too can marvel at their sheer AWESOMENESS :-)

Anyway, let's take a better look at her.  I am loving her earthy colours and her bountiful fruit - pears and grapes, two of my favourites.  She looks relaxed and comfortable in her environment, with her hand lightly placed upon her Pentacle (which looks like a globe here), so she rules her world with a light and tender touch.  She has luxurious clothes on too.... that appeals to the Leo in me like you wouldn't believe!

So how can she help me with my health?

Why not try upping my fruit intake?
Relax a little more?
Treat my 'world' (in this case my body) with a light and tender touch - massage?
Get out of my slobby 'sick clothes' and into nicer stuff.

Would adding an Oracle card or two bring any further information that I could use?

Delving into my Dreaming in Colour deck by Mindy Somers (my favourite for this kind of exercise), I drew the Power card.  I like how the colours are sympathetic to the Queen of Pentacles shades.

Maybe I could try some orange/bronze shades to make myself look a bit less corpse-like?

And of course POWER.  I am loving the whirling spiral as it rises from the bottom of the card to the top.  This is exactly what I need to do -  I really need to be getting out and about again as I've hardly crossed the threshold since Saturday night.  I also acknowledge that if I was a bit more active, maybe I wouldn't be so laid low with this?  In my house I am notoriously sedentary.  My son did a portrait of me and it was basically the back of my head, sitting at the computer. I know.  Scary.

I don't want you to get sick of seeing the same sorts of cards on here, so let's expand our horizon and end with a different Oracle card.  This one is from the Celtic Animal Oracle by Anna Franklin.

He's BADGER!  I love badgers and the keywords for this card are Tenacity, Strength and Defence - which are appropriate!

Badger urges me to look after my home, my world, to be strong ..... and to infect cattle with TB :-D

What do you think of these cards? Do you have a spread or a card that you refer to when you're feeling below par?

Monday, 5 November 2012

Court Cards | Masks for Protection

Well, it had to happen.  I promised you a posting today on Masks for Protection and then the fabulously entertaining exercises that had been pinging around in my head for days promptly flew out of my ears and left naught behind but a whistling wind.  I could not remember what I was going to say to you.

My thought process then went like this:

'I promised my lovely reader a blog post on Masks for Protection and now I've completely forgotten what I was going to write.  I'm such a TWAT.  Now EVERYBODY will see how clueless I am.  Why can't I remember it? It must have been rubbish in the first place.  That's it, the game Will Be Up and I shall be run out of Blogger as a FRAUD and a TERRIBLE person.  I may as well just QUIT.'

I then laid my head gently on the cold surface of my desk and wished I smoked cheroots.

This process of transformation from confident blogger to deranged harpy takes about 2 heart beats.

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Samhain Blog Hop | Behind The Mask

Welcome to the Samhain/Hallowe'en blog hop and to my Court Card blog.  Many thanks to my next-door neighbours for this blog hop, Kerry and Ania, for linking through to me.  If you haven't read their blogs for this hop, visit their sites via the links on my page and have fun hopping on to the other blogs taking part.

This time we are blogging about our MASKS.

When I was growing up here in Scotland, the most exciting part of Hallowe'en was getting your False Face.

Friday, 26 October 2012

John Matthews | Camelot Oracle

In the first part of this two-hander, I spoke with Camelot artist, Will Worthington, with the focus on the portraiture and artwork of the new deck.  Today it's the deck's author, John Matthews who chats about Camelot.

You are exceptionally prolific as an author!  It seems only a few weeks ago I was talking to you about the Tarot of Nostradamus and here we are again, talking about another new publication - The Camelot Oracle.  Do you ever sleep?

Monday, 22 October 2012

Will Worthington | The Camelot Oracle

OK, I hold my hands up - technically this is nothing to do with Court Cards REALLY, but ooooh the gorgeousness of the characters in these paintings simply BEGS me to tell you about them!

The other thing that I want to point out is that I do some work for Will Worthington and John Matthews on an ongoing basis, but neither of them has asked me to blog about this - but I think you can see from the images just why I HAD to tell you about them!

I put some questions to the artist, Will Worthington:

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

King of Swords | Olympus Tarot | Lo Scarabeo

It seems only a few days ago that I posted my Queen of Pentacles card. I blame the school holidays - days either drag their heels or fly out of the window, depending on how busy my son is!

I really enjoyed my Queen of Pentacles moment - I busied myself with my son, travelling to Stirling and Glasgow, enjoying each other's company rather than me just nagging him to wash dishes/tidy his shoes away etc.

I'll miss her....

But now that the school holidays are ending and my small boy has to face up to the fact that school is looming large on his horizon again, I guess that it's appropriate that I've got the King of Swords.

This is the King from the Olympus Tarot by Lo Scarabeo, illustrated by Luca Raimondo.  Meet Hercules, son of Zeus, complete with the skin of the Nemean Lion.  The skin of this lion was impervious to damage - to the extent that even when Hercules killed the beast (one of his many Labours of Hercules) it could only be skinned using one of its own claws.

This is a much more active and dynamic King of Swords than we are usually presented with.  Famed for completing his 12 Labours, set for him by the Gods, Hercules is revered more for his great strength than his brain power.

Yet this is who is to suffuse me with his energies over the coming weeks.

Perhaps his DETERMINATION will be of use when Sonshine returns to school next week and homework rears its ugly Hydra head?

Perhaps I too shall use my connections (he was ably assisted by various Gods - to whom he was related - throughout his Trials) or am I to beseech the deities themselves?  I can see quite a lot of Gods' names being taken in vain as I try to cope with Sonshine, work, marking homework for TABI and cleaning the house for the imminent return of my own domestic demi-god from 6 weeks at sea.

Perhaps the blend of brains and physicality are key.  I do a lot of sitting around *gestures to self sitting at keyboard* and I really should be more active.  I *know* this, but I don't do it.

Time for a change, methinks!

What does Hercules as the King of Swords mean for you?

Friday, 12 October 2012

Page of Swords | Gratitude Tarot | Teresa Deek

The Page of Awareness
AKA Page of Swords
Now here's something a little bit different for you to peruse - the Page of Awareness from Teresa Deek's Gratitude Tarot.

I first came across Teresa's deck in the Tarot Blog Hop and thought that it was a lovely idea, well-executed.

The macro photo of pollen-dusted stamen of a lily represents this Page - tiny, upright and potent - it feels quite Wandsy to me because I associate the creative/fiery/summer with the hot Wands with cool Swords being more airy and Springlike.

Teresa's web page for this card features the following poem (I've retained the original formatting):

Monday, 8 October 2012

Welcome | The Queen of Pentacles

This post is a little bit late, but I wanted to include it even though the full moon was last weekend.  I got caught up in posting the Lenny Oracle stuff and the gorgeous Page of Swords from Alexander Daniloff's Tarot.

Anyway, here's the post:

It was a glorious full moon here at the weekend and I felt EXACTLY in the right frame of mind for my regular draw to see whose energies will assist me towards the dark moon in a couple of weeks time.

I used the Rider Waite Smith deck (because, let's face it - it's a great Comfy Slippers deck!)  and welcomed the Queen of Pentacles to my life.  At least for the next little while.

While I like the practical nature of this Queen, it's more about appreciating it in other people rather than myself.  I am so NOT the Queen of Pentacles.  She's organised and nurturing.  I'll tell you how nurturing *I* am.  I abandoned my tomato plants a fortnight ago.  Just abandoned them.  Shut up the polytunnel and forgot about them because they were 12" tall, devoid of tomatoes and USELESS.  A bit like Kim Kardashian.

Friday, 5 October 2012

Page of Swords | The Tarot of Alexander Daniloff

When I first laid eyes on this new Tarot deck by Russian illustrator Alexander Daniloff, I was terribly excited!  I was immediately sucked in by the characters and the colours; it's a veritable medieval carnival of delights!  

I had to know more!

So, continuing on my meme for the Page of Swords (see here, here and here for other Pages and interviews), I asked Alexander whether he would be interested in talking to me a little about his deck.

It's a 78-card deck with 3 additional cards - one blank and one each offering variations on Force and Justice.  The cards will measure 141 x 73mm and the card edges are squared.

Let's take a look at his Page of Swords.

I'm loving the raven in his banner - they are clever, cruel and entertaining birds, a bit like the Swords family altogether.  See how his banner partly obscures his face? I like that - it feels kinda sneaky - but what of the hand and head at his feet?

I put some questions to Alexander, the deck's creator:

How did you become interested in the Tarot? 

"I have always been fascinated by the symbolism and medieval emblematic, iconography of miniatures and frescoes.

"The Tarot for me have been a reason to immerse myself in a medieval atmosphere, crawl between the nobles and the miserable, oscillate between the Moon and the Sun, between Life and Death.

"I do not know use the Tarot, but interpreting a state of mind, a sentimental message that contains each Arcana I began soon to feel its magic. They gave me a common thread, a compass to connect remote past with today, to create a deck in the classic style, addressed and strengthened a saving irony to avoid the risk of rhetoric."

Tell me about your Page of Swords:  

"The Page of Swords is about espionage, secret service investigation......his face is hidden and a large sword on his shoulder is not immediately visible.

"I gave him a skinny black suit and a red circle on the flag to make him look like a Ninja! The circle is associated with the symbol of Pentacles - he uses it as camouflage.

"The Raven with  ring held in its beak is shown in the red circle - stealing.

"He has one foot resting on the broken head of a statue.  This is a reference to David and Goliath.  He gets what he wants by cunning, guile and unpredictability.  He can conquer brute force.

All the Pages are limited by the platform under their feet, despite the fact that they are in an open area."

Alexander Daniloff is based in Italy and his work can be found here 
He has a 22-card Majors only tarot currently available and he is just about to start shipping his latest Tarot, from which this marvellous Page has been taken.

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

About Face 2 | The Lenormand Oracle | Andybc

Scythe: Lenormand (pub Konigs Furt)
Earlier this week we looked at the Lenormand deck with expert guidance from Helen Riding. Today we look specifically at the face cards in the Lenormand deck, with the help of Andybc:

Andy, How would we interpret the face cards in the Lenormand?

Monday, 1 October 2012

About Face: I....the Lenormand | Helen Riding

6 Clouds:  Lenormand (pub: Konigs Furt)
To ring some changes, I thought we could explore the Face Cards in the Lenormand Oracle, to see whether they work like Court Cards in Tarot (and if not - how in the heck do you use them?!).  My search has led to two wonderful people - Helen Riding and Andy BC - both extremely talented and well-versed in the lore of the Lenormand Oracle.

I first came across it a couple of years ago when I bought one that had been damaged from our TABI Conference stock.  Most widely used in mainland Europe, the Lenormand has not been as popular in the English-speaking world - UNTIL NOW!!!  The Lenormand is enjoying a massive surge in popularity and I thought I'd call upon this duo of Lennie Experts to talk about the deck and its history AND the use of face cards in some of the Lenormand decks.

In this first post of two, Helen Riding very kindly agreed to help get us all up to speed with the deck:

Monday, 24 September 2012

Autumn Equinox Spread

I opted out of the Tarot Blog Hop for the Autumn Equinox - not because I didn't want to do it - but I am up to my armpits in Court Card exercises in the TABI Training (Group 1 - fabulous collection of students *high fives any who might be reading*) and I just didn't have the time to devote that the Hop deserves.

But I wanted to join in in some way - so here's my contribution:

Monday, 17 September 2012

September | New Moon | The King of Cups

Odin - just hanging around
And so we are huddled once again in the darkness of a moonless night! A sliver of new moon will be upon us - and whose energies will guide me from now until the moon is full once again?

The Father of Cups from the Haindl, that's who.

This deck is very special to me.  It was the first 'fancy' Tarot deck that I ever bought.  It was also the first purchase that I ever made on ebay!  I *know.*  I'm a veritable FONT of spiritual insight.

The image in the card depicts Odin, the Head Honcho god of the Norse pantheon.  The suit of Cups represents the North and the Northern Gods.  Interestingly, the Queen of Cups is The Willdendorf goddess, which I mentioned earlier this month, here.

Monday, 10 September 2012

Amplifiers | Child of Fire | Passion

Sometimes a Court Card can just stump us - and our client.  No matter what we say about the energies of the character in the card, the client can't relate it to either herself or anyone that they know.

When that happens, I use an Oracle card to help point me in the right direction.  You can read more about this idea here and here.

Today's card combination really does what it says on the tin - which might make interpretations more tricky!  We have the delightful Child of Fire (equating to the Page of Wands) from the gorgeous Gaian Tarot by Joanna Colbert-Powell and the amplifier card is Passion, from Mindy Somers' Dreaming in Colour Lumen deck.

The Child of Fire finds joy in the dancing flames before him and he reaches out his hand - to touch it? To just feel the heat a little more?

This card reminds me of an anecdote told by Aleister Crowley (he of the 'wickedest man in the world' fame. The world had clearly never met Simon Cowell).  When he was a youngster, Crowley was out walking with his father.  The duo encountered a huge patch of nettles.  His father told him to keep away from the stinging weeds, but young Aleister didn't want to listen to the warning, he wanted to EXPERIENCE it for himself - so he ignored his dad and got stung to blazes for his troubles!

The Page is alllll about experiencing new things and finding delight in that experience.

But what if your sitter doesn't recognise this person, these traits? The card pulled at random as the Amplifier is Passion.  Red tulip-like blooms blossom over the card - what does this add to our understanding of the Child of Fire?

What does 'passion' mean to you? How does it affect the Child of Fire?

I'd love to hear your thoughts on this card combo!

Thursday, 6 September 2012

The King and Queen of Pentacles

We've looked at all the other couples of the Court, now we turn our attention to the final Royal Mr and Mrs: The King and Queen of Pentacles, depicted here in the DruidCraft Tarot (Philip & Stephanie Carr-Gomm and Will Worthington).

As the Pentacles govern the North, Winter, Midnight, the Winter Solstice and Earth (in my system), I find these cards excellent representations of these mystical, wintery feelings.

Both are dressed in green in red, but whereas the Queen is in mainly red with a green hood and cloak, the King is in green with a red cloak - nicely yin and yang.

Are you rather surprised that the Queen is depicted out of doors while the King is holed up, nice and cosy in the great hall - the fire roaring away behind him with the hog on the spit?  The Queen is, after all, associated with the nurturing and growth aspects of a suit - why have the King all toasty and warm?

I think that the King has been depicted like this because the King of Pentacles also represents the luxury of success.  This is the Druidcraft equivalent of the big corner office and if they had been invented, the King of Pentacles would have been wearing red braces and smoking a fat Havana cigar.

He is Earth and Fire (Pentacles and a King) which can be VERY productive if the energies are handled correctly - too much fire and the Pentacles energy hardens and shatters.  Controlled fire, as in a kiln, can create much that is useful and luxurious.

The oak leaves oh his shield, by his side, tell us that he's a wise, strong and a slow to react sort of a chap.

His bare foot rests on a plinth that depicts a goat - Capricorn - although I tend to think of him as a Taurean character - what do you think?

The Queen sits in a similar pose to her husband and she plays on her bodrum drum with a snow-white bone - simple and effective.  It feels to me, looking at these two characters side by side, that he is more interested in high status and symbols of success (heck, even his BEARD looks fancy!) than his good lady wife, who is content to play her music outdoors to the audience of a single bemused hare.

The hare halts as he hops past, his winter coat contrasting against the greening grass.  Hares are prolific breeders - a nod to the Queen of Pentacles ability to create (on many levels!)

At her feet are snowdrops - the earliest herald of Spring - and the dark silhouette of a naked tree shivers behind her.  Yet she doesn't look cold.  She is at home here.  In her element.  The Queen is Water and Earth - the creative pulse of our planet.

While the King rests his feet on a Capricorn goat, the Queen's throne is decorated with the Taurean bull.  What do you think of these associations - do you have them the other way around?

Both these royals are barefoot - this keeps them close to their native element, the earth, and keeps them grounded and in tune with their roots.

The sky behind both seem to be at the liminal stages of either dawn or dusk.  I choose to see the King at dusk and the Queen at dawn. These threshold periods are important magically and just as the King presides over the dusk and the Queen the dawn, between them they oversee our safety through the dark of the night, and also the dark of the winter.

As a pair, depicted this way, neither of them seem particularly bothered about the other - but they appear relaxed in each other's company.  The other way around, their heads incline towards each other, with the Queen looking a bit more interested in the comfortable surroundings of her hubby.  The King, on the other hand, continues to gaze out at us as if to say 'yeah, I knew she couldn't stay out there in the cold for ever.'

What do you think of the King and Queen of Pentacles?

Monday, 3 September 2012

Blue Moon! The Queen of Wands | Mary El

We had a Blue Moon the other night, the last one for quite some time (next one is 2015) so I paid close attention to my full moon reading this time.

...and you may have noticed that I've not been around much - a combination of school holidays and quite a lot of work. And, if I'm honest, a bit of soul-searching too.

This is going to be a significant card for me. I can feel it in my waters....

Who has come along to guide me through the slightly murky waters of the next couple of weeks?  This is a slightly different slant on what I usually do with the Full Moon/New Moon cards. Usually I ask whose energies will be incoming (at a New Moon reading) and fading (at the Full Moon reading).  This time I'm looking for a navigator to the New Moon - someone to hold my hand and keep me moving forwards.

And the card is the Queen of Wands from the Mary-El Tarot.

I am hugely relieved because the Queen of Wands means a great deal to me and I confess to feeling a bit more like the Queen of Wands reversed recently - my va-va-voom had va-va-moosed!

Let's take a look at Marie White's Queen of Wands.

The first thing that strikes me about the card are the earthy tones - rich browns that initially feel more like they belong to the Queen of Pentacles rather than the fiery Queen of Wands.  The second thing that I notice is that she is a massive figure of a woman - filling the entire card with her generous proportions. She's completely Willendorfian, isn't she?  She clutches a jaguar cub, a sacred animal.

Marie's book that accompanies the deck states: 'She shows you yourself, the greatest gift you can receive. She provides a safe, warm and abundant environment where you can grow from a small cub to a powerful jaguar yourself.

'She helps you develop yourself into your full potential with a clear vision of yourself...your growth and creativity.'

I really needed to hear that right now as I have been struggling (as do many of us!) with what in the HECK my vision of myself is!  I wear many hats (not literally, although I am partial to something with a broad brim that I vainly hope makes me look like Margaret Lockwood in The Wicked Lady) and I enjoy most of them. But there is also a nagging voice that tells me that I've lost something, left something behind, that is really important.  It feels a lot like not knowing exactly where your handbag is.

If I pulled this Queen of Wands for YOU, in the role of helper, for the period up to the New Moon, how would she help you explore and develop your full potential?

...and just in case you're wondering:

Margaret Lockwood: Never-knowingly under-hatted

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Lammas Blog Hop | My favourite Pentacle....

Welcome to the OTHER Game of Thrones!

My Tarot blog concentrates on the 16 characters of the Tarot Court and my goal is to help demystify these cards and ensure that readers have a wealth of ideas to draw upon when the cards arise during a reading.  And to have a bit of fun with them too!

If you're interested in improving your relationship with the Tarot Court, please click to follow Tarot Thrones...over there on the right hand side.

You may be here because you are hopping from Christiane's blog to Joanne's blog or vice versa for the Lammas Tarot Blog Hop or you may have just wandered here via a tweet or facebook.  Whichever path you have followed to find me, I am very glad to see you!

In this Blog Hop, we were to look at our favourite Pentacle card. Because my blog focuses entirely on Court Cards, I'm keeping within that structure and limiting myself to choosing from the four courts (how very Pentacly!).  It's a no-brainer - it's got to be the Knight of Pentacles for me.  And my favourite image of him is this one, from the Pamela Colman-Smith Commemorative set issued by US Games Systems.

I hold my hands up - I admit it, in the past I have been easily seduced into bed by the fiesty Knight of Wands....intellectually challenged by the prickly Knight of Swords and utterly charmed by the romance of the Knight of Cups.  At a party, the Knight of Pentacles probably wouldn't have got a second glance from me.  Although I might have sent him off to the bar to bring me back a drink.

And yet, as I get older, I appreciate more and more the qualities of the Knight of Pentacles.

I love the practical streak that allows him to carry out so many small jobs with a quiet confidence that leaves the blustering Knight of Wands weakly reaching for his wallet.

The Knight of Pentacles has an intimate knowledge of valves and screws and the workings of machines.  He may put on a show of being reluctant to help out, but his fingers dance over the various cogs or screws.  The Knight of Swords, on the other hand,  frantically flicks through the instruction manual looking for clues as to what needs tweaking.  Or thumped with a hammer.

And the Knight of Cups?

Let me share a story with you.  When my son was born, 12 years ago this very week, there were another three women in the ward whose babies arrived soon after mine.  Their husbands brought them bouquets of blooms that scented the ward with tendrils of scent from exotic lands.....armfuls of red roses in crackling sellophane sleeves and gas-filled balloons that bobbed up to ceiling height when they escaped their boxes, trailing ribbons and perspex bubbles with either a blue or pink teddy bear inside.


What did I get?

An inkjet printer for my computer.

Practical.  And the source of much hilarity amongst the new sleep-deprived mothers.

But I had that printer for YEARS and every time I used it, I thought of the day that my son was born and wondered how long the bouquets of flowers lasted :-)

This Knight is loyal, hard-working (check out those immaculately ploughed furrows!), strong and resilient.  But he's not yet got that outward mastery of The King - the Knight can also be unbearably stubborn (see: outright refusal to read the operating instructions  before using an appliance), unable to pay you a compliment without some irritated prompting from yourself and he is totally bamboozled by your need to own more than one pair of black high heels.

And if you decide to have A Deep Conversation one morning in bed as you both sup your cups of tea - good luck!  A 'Deep Conversation' for the Knight of Pentacles is one that is held down a mine-shaft.

I once heard it said that the Knights of Wands and Swords would be the first into battle, followed by the Knight of Cups (who is probably composing a sonnet in his head about the war as he canters towards the fighting).

And the Knight of Pentacles?  He would be the last to venture into the fight, but once he was there, he would be the last to leave it.

And the only one to buy you a printer for your computer....


Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Meet The King and Queen of Cups

Reverting once more to the glorious Court Cards of the Druidcraft Tarot, I'm introducing you to Mr and Mrs Cups.

The Queen of Cups stands on the shore of some tranquil waters, her bare toes dipping into the glassy cool depths.  Unlike the other Queens of the Druidcraft, she is standing, her throne can be seen some steps away with a serpent lying close at hand.

Her hair is covered by an elaborately embroidered hood and she stands, eyes closed (or downcast?) as she holds her golden cup before her, as if she is working a ritual.

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Hello again King of Coins!

The moon has just hidden her light again and that's the signal for me to pull another card for myself for the incoming energies from now until the full moon.

And this particular slice of  divine Tarot gorgeousness comes, once again, from Kat Black's Touchstone Tarot (see earlier cards here and here.  It's the King of Coins. Again.

This guy has been popping in and out of my life recently like a fiddler's elbow!

This King regards us with a steady gaze as he sits at table - his plate of oysters and glass of wine await his attentions.  But look at the toppled pitcher, you wouldn't expect THAT at the King's table.

I wonder....what dining shenanigans we have just interrupted?!

Kat says that this is a man who is enjoying the success that his affluence has brought. He's no penny-pinching miser of a king - he's a man who enjoys his luxuries in life.  Unlike our current crop of bankers, this is a rich man who is TRUSTWORTHY.  Prone to giving to worthy causes, he's kind and approachable.

The images that swirl together to make this composite King of Coins include Hans Holbein The Younger (for both face and body - from two different portraits).  And, most pleasingly to me, the feather in his hat is by Cecco de Caravaggio.

I've just read Caravaggio by Andrew Graham-Dixon and Cecco was the dimple-faced youth who featured in many of Caravaggio's paintings, including my absolute favourite 'Amor Vincit Omnia'.  They may or may not have been lovers - but I like to think that somewhere, just out of sight - perhaps right behind the artist - are a couple of the King's companions - happily squiffy and up to goodness knows WHAT - maybe sticking a couple of irreverent fingers up as rabbit ears behind the viewer's head?  In fact, IS that King looking right at us or is he looking at someone just off to the viewer's left?

If only those companions had remembered to set the pitcher upright, we would have been none the wiser.

This King indicates that it's ok for me to enjoy myself a little.  Cut myself some slack and splash out on a few things that give me pleasure.  Maybe go out for dinner with some friends and not limit myself to a couple of polite glasses of vino....rewind to the good old pre-baby days!

And maybe it's time to bin-off the £9.99 skinny-leg jeans from The Factory Shop and splash out on something that isn't worn through on the behind.  Although I blame this blog for wearing through the seat of my jeans.  And possibly facebook :-D

What does the King of Pentacles bring to YOUR life?

Monday, 16 July 2012

OOTK | Part II | Hunt the (scary!) Lady!

Kali: Do not go home to her
with a burst pay-packet
So, following on from the earlier post about the initial stage of the OOTK spread, we move on to the second procedure but remember, you need never move further through the spread than this section, if that's what you're comfortable with.

Here I've used the Haindl Tarot, for the question:  So, what do I do next with my Tarot aspirations?

For my significator card, I chose the Queen of Wands (because she is generally the character to whom I aspire!) and in the Haindl, she is the somewhat bum-clenchingly scary Kali. <- I usually pick the Queen of Wands for more, erm, WHOLESOME reasons :-)

Given that my question involves 'work' I would be expecting it on either the Fire pile or perhaps the Earth pile.... and lo! there she was right at the top of the Earth pile.

Friday, 13 July 2012

Exercise | Tarot and Oracle Amplifier

Trying a new meme for you here!  If I supply a question and a couple of cards, would you be prepared to have a bash at answering the question?

I'm hoping that you're nodding and not gently banging your head off the keyboard :-)

Here's the first hypothetical question:  I have a difficult relationship with my step-son, what can I do to improve things between us?

We've got the Page of Swords from Cilla Conway's Intuitive Tarot and the Inspiration card from the Dreaming In Colour Oracle by Mindy Sommers.

Here's an earlier post that I wrote about using an Oracle deck as a way to amplify specific features of your Court Card.

What would you say to a sitter, with this question, with these two cards?

Don't spend more than a couple of minutes on it - it's just a bit of fun!

Come up with an interpretation? Share it in the Comments section!

Hoping Friday the 13th isn't too rough for you!

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

OOTK | First Operation | Golden Dawn


I know.

It sounds like something an orangutang might say if it happened to be the librarian at a University for Wizards* but in this case it stands for Opening Of The Key.  And it's a Tarot spread.

The whole OOTK shebang involves four stages, but today,  we are going to look at only the first part of the first stage, or First Operation.

I could write pages on the background to this spread, rattling on about the great occult meanings imbued within it - the Princesses!  The Aces!

But I like to keep things simple, so I'm providing only a tiny bit of background for you - but be aware there is more to know :-)

OOTK was designed by the Great and The Good of the Golden Dawn, it is an impressive set of four manoeuvres that perfectly suits that highly intellectualised GD approach to the Tarot.

Today we're just looking at the First Operation. Actually, just the first part of the First Operation.

This can be used perfectly well as a stand-alone spread and one need never venture into the thigh-high swirling waters of the other three operations if you don't want to.

Anyway, let's crack on!

Using whichever manner you are comfortable with, select a significator for your client. Or let them select one.

Allow the querent to shuffle the cards and formulate their question.

All you are going to ask them to do is split the deck into four.

First of all you ask them to half the deck - placing one half on the right of the area to which you will use for the spread and the other half towards the left.

The red arrow shows the position of your two initial stacks

Then half each portion again, again laying half immediately to the left of the portion from which it was cleaved.

The blue arrows show the positions of the second stacks.

The cards on the extreme right (the stack to which I am pointing) represent the Fire energies , then Water, then Air and the final stack on the extreme left represent the Earth.

Now, you might be lucky and have all four piles roughly the same height.  More than likely you will have one pile substantially larger or smaller than the others.

You might be able to hazard some thoughts about what the largest/smallest pile might mean?  You can include these musings in your reading, if you like.

Turn each stack over and read according to the stack that it is in.

To illustrate:  the 6 of Cups  in the Fire stack.  The Water of the Cups weakens the Fire of the stack.  This might indicate that one's natural fiery energies (optimism, expansion, career) are being adversely affected by the watery Cups energy of the 6.  Perhaps the sitter is brooding on something from the past that is holding back their natural enthusiasm for a situation?

Do the same for each of the four stacks and it will give you an overview of what the rest of the reading is about; paving the way for the subsequent Operations.  However, you can actually just stop there if you like!

But since WE are concerned with the Court Cards and their role, here as significator, we're going to plough on a tiny bit further........

Search through every pile - without disturbing the order of the cards - until you find the stack that the significator is in.

At this point, the Golden Dawn advocate the following:

If the Significator is NOT found in the correct stack then the reading is abandoned.  What they mean by 'correct stack' is that if the question is to do with the emotional problems of a relationship, you would hope to find the Significator in the second stack, the Water pile.  If it was to do with one's health, one might expect to find it in the Earth pile......and so on,  but I don't ascribe to that *shrug*.

I'm in the Carry On Regardless Team :-D

The reason for this is that it is not always clear to the sitter (and consequently to the reader) what the querent's issue is REALLY about.  For example - maybe the sitter thinks that it is a problem about sex (for me, that would be the fire stack) but the issue may actually be entirely emotional, or health-related (ie either the Water or the Earth stacks).  So I'm all for continuing with the reading!

So, you've found the stack with the Significator.  Let's assume that you are going ahead with the reading - what next?

...........tune in next time to find out :-D

*If you don't read any novels by Terry Pratchett, then this reference is completely meaningless.  I apologise.  But urge you to read them.

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Farewell Queen of Discs!

I usually draw these cards based on the Dark Moon (incoming energies) and the Full Moon (outgoing energies) in the evening, once my son has gone to bed.

But our term time routine is now upset and it will take us a week or so to create a Summer Holiday routine.  As such I'm blogging on an ad hoc basis (basically whenever I can get in front of a computer without a small boy hanging over my shoulder!).

As you can see, the outgoing influences over the next couple of weeks until the Dark Moon is the regal Queen of Discs from the Intuitive Tarot by Cilla Conway.

The motif that winds its way through the entire deck is the oval frame for each character, giving the appearance of looking at each figure through a lens.

She is depicted, slightly aloof looking, in front of her home - comfortable rather than stately.  She is dressed in shades of green and gold (appropriate!) and holds a great shield of organic design in similar colours.  Loving that head-dress - very art deco!

The suit of Discs or Pentacles is associated with Health, Wealth and Home and the Queen is the emotional heart of that set up.  So I'm a bit glum to see her energies retreating, for a little while at least.

What could it mean?

Will my son and I end up eating packets of biscuits for our evening meal?

Will the house tumble into chaos while my other half works away out of the country (probably, it usually does - I'm a bit feral when it comes to house-keeping to be honest).

Will my money be frittered away on books, bling and booze?!

Will my clicking ankles continue to plague me, even if I stop jogging?

So many questions!

In Cilla's deck, this Queen stands for the organised home-maker and astute business woman, but she may also bolster her fragility with material goodies - Ugg boots perhaps?  Cilla says, in the accompanying book: "A natural beautifier, she loves comfort and her home.   Often very beautiful *coughs* she is ambitious, confident and energetic.  She is highly skilled in practical situations, especially to do with home or business. She makes things happen.'

She can also be, however, grasping, overly-ambitious, egotistical and wrapped up in her possessions.  Hmm - maybe the death of my Ugg boots are a sign*, right enough!

How does the Queen of Discs manifest in your life right now?

Queen of Discs image from Intuitive Tarot by Cilla Conway, published by St Martin's Press

Cilla also has a wonderful Oracle deck called Devas of Creation - check it out if you like working with abstract decks.

*They're not really dead.  But they sure don't look as good as they did before they got soaked :-(

Monday, 2 July 2012

Significator Card | Dame Fortune's Wheel Tarot

I'm always on the look-out for something interesting for you and this morning I discovered this: Dame Fortune's Wheel Tarot by Paul Huson (published by Lo Scarabeo) actually has a Significator card!

Of course, you may still select a Significator using whichever method you prefer, but what a time- and sanity-saver this card will be!

The deck itself takes the medieval wood-cut style of the Marseilles but expands the colour-scheme and adds a semi-illustrated Minor Arcana to the mix (the pips are presented within a meaningful scene).  The suits themselves are Batons, Cups, Swords and Coins with each suit rendered in a particular palette and bordered in the same colour - making suit identification possible from the merest sliver of card.

Anyone familiar with the Rider Waite Smith deck would be able to use this deck very easily, I think.

In the Major Arcana, the card names are traditional - a Juggler and a Female Pope replace the Magician and the Hgh Priestess.  I also see that Strength transforms back into Fortitude and occupies the 11th Arcana place, while Justice slips into her traditional 8th position.

I notice that Major Arcana card (Death XIII) is numbered but not titled!

The Courts are sufficiently interesting that they warrant a little blog post of their own.  

I was amazed to see that the deck had its own Significator - do you know any other decks that have this feature? Do tell!

Monday, 25 June 2012

Hello to the Queen of Swords

I know that this post is a little late, but I didn't want the Summer Solstice blog post and the Incoming influences card post to overlap too much, so I held the Incoming Influences card reading over until this week.

I feel weird.  And sad.

At the end of this week, my son will leave the innocent delights of Primary School behind him and set his face towards his secondary school education in August.   I should feel happy - we're halfway through his formal education and we're doing fine. Right?

But I laid out his uniform for him this morning and waves of sadness washed over me as I hung up the little white shirt and tie.  'This is the last Monday that I'll do this for him,' I thought.

I know.  I am totally working Queen of Cups reversed.

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Celebrate your Solstice!

Welcome to This Game of Thrones, my blog about the Court Cards of the Tarot.  Chances are you have alighted here as a stop on the Tarot Blog Hop from either Donna Faber's blog or Priestess Tarot's blog.  Heck, perhaps you wafted in here from Twitter or Facebook links and haven't a clue what the Tarot Blog Hop might be!

The Tarot Blog hop is where a whole load of Tarotists (what is the collective name for a bunch of Tarotists anyway? a Fool of Tarotists? A World of Tarotists?!) blog on the same topic, relating it to Tarot or Oracles in whichever way the Muse moves them.  We all post at the same time (that's the theory and the challenge lol!) and link together like a daisy chain. Today our subject is: Celebrate The Sunrise.

Today, the Summer Solstice, is the longest day, and along with the Winter Solstice, these two tend to be the dawns that we consider significant amongst the other 363.  But surely EVERY dawn is worth celebrating?

'Every day you waken up, you're winning' is a quote, from goodness knows where, which I hold very dear.

So, my question today was, how can we best celebrate our sunrise, not just today, but every day?

I selected a court card at random from the Gaian Tarot by Joanna Powell Colbert.  The card drawn was the charming Child of Earth. Standing in his verdant green woolly sweater beneath a great apple tree, the little fella is completely engrossed in the scarlet apple in his hands. 

In this deck, the Child cards (equating to the traditional Page) all ask us to approach life with 'Beginner's Mind'.

I like that, for me there is no better way to look at a sunrise as an opportunity to start afresh; for us to look at life with new and curious eyes. We can choose to drop our baggage of experience and refuse to let our previous encounters taint our enjoyment of the new day.

And of course this works on other levels.

We all have our own particular sunrises, those things that light up our lives with hope.  The could be our families, our faith, our career, our hobbies - the thing that makes your life worthwhile!  The Child looks at that apple as if he's never seen it before, appreciating it for the miracle that it is.  And he urges us to do the same.

Be honest, we tend not to do that.  Just think - I wrote this on a little box in Scotland and you are reading it on your own box somewhere else in the world.  We are linked together by cables, plugs and, frankly, magic!  We have SO much magic in our lives that we no longer see because we have grown complacent to it and accept it as 'normal'.  We can fly like birds to every part of the world! We can switch on a box in the corner of the room and watch a football match being played live on another continent (obviously there is WAY too much Euro 2012 footie on the telly!)! We eat fresh vegetables from distant counties (and countries!).... our lives are filled with the most amazing and wondrous things.  And we tend not to bother about them :-)

One of the things that lights up my life is my recently-found pleasure in learning to playing the keyboard.  Beethoven I'm not, but I really enjoy plinking away at Killing Me Softly or Danny Boy.  Mind you, I'm not sure whether my family enjoys it QUITE as much as me.  The Child of Earth prompts me to appreciate how far I've come, how much fun I have with it, and to take delight in the noise that I make!

The Child card urges us to keep that personal sunrise fresh, unjaded, curious and fun. Approach your own sunrise as a miracle for your day, just as the sun rising over the horizon is a miracle to ALL our days!

The Child's companion animal, the rabbit, is often found at dawn and dusk 'when it is easiest to slip between this world and the Otherworld,' Joanna reminds us. 

Most of the time we don't give much thought to sunrise or sunset - we sleep through the former and the latter passes in a blur of TV shows. But dawn and dusk are very special times of the day, thresholds between this world and the Otherworld, as Joanna says.  We should honour them all, don't you think?

As far as our own personal sunrises are concerned, when you are doing something that you love, you tend to zone out or enter Flow - isn't that a perfect way to experience the Otherworld?

Through the Child of Earth, we can celebrate our sunrise (in whichever form we recognise it) by allowing ourselves to be delighted and amazed by its existence in our lives.  On a daily basis we can give thanks for all those things that light up our day.

Can we look at an apple and see it for the first time?

I hope that you have enjoyed your time here on This Game of Thrones and maybe you'll come back and visit me again.  You might like to sign up for my Court Card newsletter so that we can keep in touch? 

Next stop on the tarot blog hop trail.....

Feel free to hop backwards though the list to the lovely Louise at Priestess Tarot too!

And if any of the links are broken, please visit the Blog-Wrangler's master list!

Friday, 15 June 2012

Away with the Birdies!

Today I thought I'd introduce you to the Court Cards of the Secret Language of Birds Tarot by Adele Nozedar and Linda Sutton (artist).

Before we talk about the Courts in this deck, you will see that this suit, Cups, is entitled Coppe. Adele pays tribute to the Italian 15th century origins of the Tarot (as we currently understand them!) and each suit and Major is named in Italian, but fret not, the accompanying book has it all in English too.

Each suit is allocated a bird; for the Cups it is the Kingfisher, as you can see.

The Court structure has been re-imagined by Nozedar and we see the Page/Princess role now taken by the Queen and the Knight/Prince role is now filled by The King.  I can see your eyelid starting to twitch - is that confusing the hell out of you, dear Thothites? :-)

The two high profile roles that had belonged to the King and Queen have now been transferred to the God and Goddess of the suit.

The reason for the inclusion of a God and Goddess is that birds have always had associations with the divine because they can fly right up there to the highest heavens and commune with the Gods themselves.  They have also been associated with Divine messsages and interaction with us in mythology (eg Leda and the swan) and also in biblical stories - the Dove and the Raven in the Noah's Ark story for example.

By adding the God and Goddess elements, Adele reminds us of those divine links between the birds and us and the birds and the Gods, and us and the Gods.

Adele and Linda have sneaked in the occasional famous face too - and here you can clearly see the young Elizabeth Taylor....and I'm pretty sure that I should know that other dude next to her - Is he Dylan Thomas? That's who provides the quote that opens the section on the King of Cups, so that's who I'm plumping for! *complete philistine face*

To marry bird augury,  one of the most ancient forms of divination, with Tarot (the most popular!) is, I think, inspired!  In the accompanying book, Adele gives many interesting details of the mythology of the birds and how it's an appropriate symbol for each card.

The Kingfisher symbol transforms into the Feng Huang - the Chinese equivalent of the Phoenix as it enters the realms of the gods.  This transformation also takes place as the bird rises towards the Gods in the other suits too.

And you will see that the Court structure doesn't end with the God, but the Goddess! I like the idea of concluding the Courts with a Goddess and not a God - keeps it fresh!  *high fives anyone passing* 

So - what do you think of Adele and Linda's Coppe Court Cards? As ever, I'd love to hear your comments!

Published by Schiffer. Words Adele Nozedar. Art Linda Sutton

You can find our more about Adele's work here and Linda's work here

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

But what do you MEAN?!

The Queen of Swords from
Marie White's Mary-El Tarot
Published by Schiffer
I once did a Tarot reading for a newly-engaged lady and in her Celtic Cross spread, there were NINE court cards.


Once I had dragged myself up off the floor and wiped the tears from my panic-stricken eyes, I set about giving the reading, my voice thin and reedy with stress.

'Are you finding a LOT of people trying to tell you how to organise the wedding?' I asked gingerly.

She nodded.

Friday, 8 June 2012

Farewell to the King of Swords!

Did you miss me?  I took myself (and family) off to Blackpool for a few days so that my son had a better memory of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee than just a day off school.

Ever diligent, I took my laptop with me, but when your hotel overlooks Blackpool Pleasure Beach and this is the view from your bedroom window, blogging kinda goes OUT the window!

You're probably thinking 'Jeez, what a shit view!' but, dear reader, I REQUESTED a bedroom with a view over the rollercoasters because I LOVE listening to their thunder and rattle (and the excited screaming!).  I feel happy when I hear it.  Odd?

Monday, 28 May 2012

Significators | Finding The One

I've already written at length (ad nauseum?!) about various methods of finding a Significator for your sitter (or yourself) and in one of the resulting blog post comments, Chloe McCracken mentioned a way to use them that I thought was GREAT and am going to share with you here.

By the way, if you're not familiar with Chloe's work, please check out the @TABITarot blog where she tirelessly blogs for TABI and also manages to find the time to write her own blog, Inner Whispers.

As with all the best things in life, it's really simple to implement:  You chose your significator, insert it back into the deck, let your client shuffle and chat about their issue......then you carefully go through the well-shuffled deck and read the cards either side of the significator.

Here's a worked example:

I chose the Queen of Wands for myself because of the lions on her throne and me being Leo *tosses mane imperiously, sits with knees apart*.  I slipped the card into the middle of the deck and started shuffling, thinking all the while about how I could Improve Things.....

Once I was satisfied that I'd shuffled sufficiently, I inched through the cards until I found the one I was looking for, the Queen of Wands.  The card before her was the 2 of Pentacles and the card after her was the 8 of Swords.

The first thing that struck me was that she seems to have turned her back on the dancing Pents dude and has turned her head towards the sword-hampered figure in the 8Swords.  She is inclined towards the Swords.

Mind you, that guy's hat is a bit strange.....

Anyway, although she is inclined towards the Swords, she IS still looking out at us - and her cat is certainly not side-tracked by the show on either side of the cards.

I see water in both of the cards either side of her.

So, here's how I interpret these cards for the query: How I can improve things:  I am naturally inclined towards the self-limiting behaviour of the 8 Swords.  Sometimes my emotions/hormones (I'm at a funny age!) DO whell up and I feel overwhelmed (see the puddles of sea-water around the Swords gal's feet? - and let's not forget that this queen embodies Water and Fire - not always comfortable bedfellows), but that feeling of restricction is ENIRELY avoidable (that Swords girl can easily shirk off those bonds and get off her blindfold - if she wants to.  And she's not trapped by swords - the whole front of the card is sword free.  She just THINKS she's stymied. *I* just think I'm stymied.  And that's wrong-headed thinking.

Instead the Queen would do well to take a better look at the juggling Pentacles chappie.  Strange hat notwithstanding, he's managing to juggle his disks - and rides out the waves. He's on one leg.  He's got balance.  He is not subsumed by the waves/emotions/hormones.  Once I get a metaphorical boat, I'll be fine.  I've maybe even already GOT the boat :-)

Have you tried Chloe's idea? How did you get on with it?  What would you add to my interpretation?

Deck: RWS Centenary Edition, published by US Games - words, A E Waite, artwork Pamela Colman-Smith
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