Card of the Day: 47, The Moon

Card of the day0008Each day, I will draw a card from a different deck and post my reflections

Crystal Visions Tarot by Jennifer Galasso  The Moon

I enter a field of dreams, place of the subconscious, the realm of spirit

I see before me a Moon Goddess, her companions a pair of wolves.  They stand before an arch over which we see the phases of the moon – waxing, full and waning.

The wolves howl their songs of joy; they are wild, untamed spirits.  They are fearless and fiercly loyal, the greatest teachers of the animal kingdom.

Wolf is my guide and my totem, so I feel particular affinity with this card.  The place of dreams and intution is my true home.

But I am not like the wolf.  I have many fears and self doubt; I lack courage.

How many times must I approach this gateway before I have the courage to walk through, to accept my wild spirit, to take on the burden of my quest?

How does The Moon speak to you?

What lessons do Her guardians offer you at this point on your journey?

Do you approach your gateway with strength and commitment, or will you step back, relectant to face your own fears?

Will you liberate your wild nature, sing your song of power and joyfully walk through the gateway to whatever lies ahead?

Mitakuye Oyasin – We Are All Related

Freespirit x



Deck Review: The Fey Tarot by Riccardo Minetti and Mara Aghem

The Fey Tarot by Riccardo Minetti, illustrated by Mara Aghem

The Fey Tarot Deck by Riccardo Minetti and Mara Aghem

What a wondrous thing is this deck, deep and insightful yet filled with a childlike wonder at the magic of the universe.  I waited impatiently for the set to arrive from America and I haven’t been disappointed for a moment.  The artwork is stunning; graceful and inspired.

The Fey of this deck are not mere cartoon figures, but fully developed characters, with personalities, foibles and individuality.  The four suits are perceptively drawn and keep their main elemental correspondences and characteristics; the Chalices (cups) are gentle, watery Fey; the Swords have a dark, haunting energy; the Wands are nature sprites and the Pentacles live and thrive in the earthly realm.

The Major Arcana are both sensitive and provocative; using the templates provided by RWS, Mara expands on their symbolism in a world both magical and relevant.

The Seer, for example, representing the High Priestess, portrays the ancient allegory of wisdom by showing the Fey reading her book.  She sits outside a gate, beyond which we suspect is further knowledge, showing that she is the guardian, not the source of understanding.  It is not a heavenly gate, adorned with jewels, but rather plain and simple, indicating that wisdom comes from many sources and that value is indeed relative.

The Seer also only occupies the bottom half of the card; the gate rises above her, suggesting that she will help you so far but no further; understanding is not a gift she can bestow but one that must be earned. Only by climbing the stairs and entering the unknown can you hope to understand the mysteries she guards.

The Empress, by contrast, is large and wonderful; her image fills the card with its presence, protecting all her creatures with her gentle, all embracing love.

The small, winged unicorn she holds in her lap represents purity, innocence and spirit; the earth mother will protect the very smallest and weakest of her creatures against any force.  Her size in comparison to the building on which she rests reminds you that she represents the earth mother, whose love and protection is limitless.

I must draw to your attention the Lovers.  A substantial creature, born of earth and stone, tenderly reaches toward a delicate sprite of the air.

Their differences are indisputable,  yet they have chosen each other’s company.  This card speaks of the power of love to overcome adversity and diversity.  It illustrates something of the nature of love, which is not blind as is often said, but sees all and accepts everything.

Rabbi Julius Gordon said:

Love is not blind – it sees more, not less. But because it sees more, it is willing to see less.”

I’d recommend this deck to anyone who has an interest in exploring the tarot with a new perspective.  A reader familiar with the RWS should be able to recognise the archetypes without very much trouble; although the Minors have lost their pips each has its number at the top of the card, so not too much difficulty there.  I bought my deck as part of a boxed set and I think the accompanying book is well worth reading, revealing insights into the symbols used in each card.  You won’t get your LWB by buying the set.  I never use mine, but those of you who enjoy these might want to consider separate purchases.

This is a wonderful deck for meditation.  Try picking a card from your traditional Rider Waite Smith clone; now pick the corresponding card from the Fey.  I guarantee you’ll learn something new.  These cards have a fresh, youthful perspective; you cannot help but learn through the eyes of the Fey world represented here.  Each time I use this deck, I am blown away by its depth and personality – I would totally recommend it.

© Free Spirit Tarot 2003

Mitakuye Oyasin – We Are All Related

Freespirit x


Card of the Day 40

Faery TarotEach day, I will draw a card from a different deck and post here my reflections

Faerie Tarot: Premier Edition

5 Wands – Faerie Tarot by Natalie Hertz

This little fey has a message for anyone who has asked about their work situation and its surrounding energies.

Look how he struggles with his wands, trying so hard not to drop one, but it is clear he needs some help.

Five Wands often suggests a need for team work and there is certainly a lack of help of any kind for this fey.

If only this fey had some willing hands to assist he would be able to reap much more of his harvest.

But its more than just asking for help; its about being able to create an atmosphere of trust between co-workers, so that all members of the team are supporting a common end and each is able to work to their mutual highest good.

Faery Tarot

The Wheel of Fortune – Faerie Tarot by Natalie Hertz

A lot rides on being able to create an energetic environment, in which each member of the team is able to offer and request support.

If this is not achieved, potential and momentum will be lost and the moment of opportunity will be lost.

However, working hard to create such an environment will be beneficial for all concerned, both now and in the future.

Mitakuye Oyasin – We Are All Related


Introducing the Tarot

Introducing the Tarot

“For I dipt into the future, far as human eye could see,
Saw the Vision of the world, and all the wonders that would be;”
Alfred, Lord Tennyson

Many years ago, as I took my first faltering steps toward understanding the Tarot, I had little idea of what a journey it would be.  It quickly became my passion, all encompassing.  It has lead me towards self-discovery and a healthy respect for the unknown influences that guide our daily lives towards possibility and the fulfilment of our dreams.

Tarot is a system of divination which has gained great popularity over the last several decades and become increasingly accessible in the process.  From being something which was rarely spoken of and feared by many, it has become almost acceptable and currently raises only mild disapproval among even the most conservative members of society.  Its been a long journey from the traveller’s caravan to the high street, but for those of us who love the craft, this can only be a good thing.  As Tarot takes its place in popular culture, the growing media interest has provided us with more resources than ever before.

The origins of this fascinating art are shrouded in obscurity.  Even the name Arcana, used to divide the cards of higher significance from those relating to the mundane, means secrets or mysteries, known only to a few.  It has been suggested that its beginnings go right back to ancient Egypt and a culture deeply rooted in magic and symbolism.  Others claim that the Tarot began its journey in India, in the hierarchical castes of Hinduism.  Documentation exists to support the theory that some type of Tarot  was used in the court of King Charles VI of France, although its  purpose is unclear.  Whether the cards were designed as a game or used as some sort of allegory for life, is not known.  I shall leave history where it is, in the past and let you make your own investigations into the fascinating ancestry of this craft.  Most books on the Tarot contain a chapter on its historical origins which, though interesting is not of great importance at this stage.

There is a widely held belief that you should be gifted with your first Tarot deck.  It’s a delightful idea and sometimes appropriate, but not to be followed blindly by the beginner.  No matter who is kind enough to buy your first deck, you would do well to choose it yourself.  If you’ve already begun to browse, you’ll realise what a tremendous choice you have.  There is a profusion of decks available, not only from specialist stores, but also from mainstream booksellers and a variety of internet sources.  So where do you start and how do you decide?

If you can visit a specialist occult shop, you may be able to browse through a scrapbook containing  samples from a wide range of decks.  You will be able to judge colour, texture and size of cards, as well as view the art itself.  You will also find it helpful to look at illustrated books featuring colour images of the decks used.  I’m sure you’ve all heard of experienced Tarotists urging you to ‘throw away the books’, but they are a great resource when deciding what deck to buy and how to go about learning to read the cards.  Some of the books I used in my early Tarot days are still an essential part of my library and have been a great source of inspiration over the years.  As with  any skill, we are always learning.

One deck you will see featured in book beyond number is known as the Rider-Waite, although it may be more properly called the Coleman-Smith, giving credit to the artist who drew the original artwork.  This is possibly the most widely used deck and perhaps an obvious choice for the  beginner, if only because it features in such a huge range of learning material.  But there are a great many other possibilities, so here’s a few ideas to help you make your choice.

At this stage, you are working purely intuitively, using your feelings, so its essential that the cards evoke some response in you.  If you are drawn to a particular theme that relates to a book or film, you need to consider how well you know the story and whether you understand any teaching fables hidden within.  For example, in Lord of the Rings, the love of precious things led to false values, leading to an inability to make ethical choices or sound decisions.  Looking still at themes, have the characters been translated well in the specific deck, to express the archetypes of the Tarot they are given to represent?  Although its true that each card has different meanings for each reader, there are subtle truths to be observed, and the card must remain true to the deeper meanings assigned to them, as well as provoking thoughtful insight in the reader.

As well as deciding upon a theme, you need to look very carefully at the art.  Its of little importance that you love Greek mythology, if the imagery drawn upon the cards does not appeal to you.  Just as you would not put a painting upon your wall if you did not like the artwork, you would be ill advised to buy a deck that is not pleasing to your eye.  It is the visual information  that makes the link between the higher consciousness and the rational mind.  In other words, the pictures help us to decode the messages we receive.

So you see, its not just a matter of ordering a Tarot deck.  Look at the pictures, what do they say to you?  Look at the colours, are they pleasing?  Look at the symbols, what, if anything, do you understand from them?  How big are the cards and can you hold them comfortably in your hands?   Are they clear enough for you to be able to see small details?   This all may seem rather tiresome, but you are most fortunate to have such a great choice of decks.  Remember, a Tarot deck is simply a tool, its purpose to help you receive and interpret information. Whether you believe this comes from your own subconscious, or from a higher source, is not important here; when you lay your cards on the table, your objective should be: message received and understood.  Enjoy your browsing, take your time, and hopefully you will come home with a deck that you can work with.

Your Tarot deck of 78 cards is really two decks – Major and Minor Arcana.  The 22 cards of the Major Arcana represent the journey of the self; the different personalities express different facets of the seeker’s own nature, or varying stages of their development.  Like a child, The Fool begins his journey in innocence, works towards empowerment, seeks wisdom and finally comes to enlightenment.  This journey deals with matters of the higher self and relates to influences and challenges of major importance.  These are the issues that influence our lives profoundly, over which we may have little control but the ability to respond well.  They may relate to karmic issues, spiritual paths, or other matters of life-changing importance.  They tend to have long term consequences and wide ranging effects.  As a tool for self-discovery and meditation, the Major cards may be used to great effect by themselves.

The 48 cards of the Minor Arcana consist of four suits, which correspond to the four elements that we work with in magic; for decks based on the Rider Waite model, we begin with Pentacles for Earth, Swords for Air, Wands for Fire and Cups for Water.  In some decks you will find the names have been changed to work with the theme, but there is generally a guide provided to help you make the transition; its not that big a leap of the imagination to recognise Rods as Wands, Blades as Swords or Chalices as Cups, for example.  If you prefer to keep things simple in the early days, buy a Rider Waite clone featuring the original suits and corresponding elements.

Each suit also has its royal court, similar to those in playing cards.  These cards are arguably the most difficult to read, and would warrant an article to themselves!  Suffice it to say, they usually comprise a family of Page, Knight, Queen and King, who represent actual people or personality  traits.  In a reading, the Minor cards relate to the personal choices that we make day-to-day: finances, relationships, career, friendships and all the things which make up our everyday view of reality.  Their influences, though often felt as keenly in the moment, can be dealt with perhaps more prosaically than those of the Majors, and their effects are more transitory.

There are many different ways to learn to use your cards and form that elusive connection that experienced readers tend to speak of with such certainty.  To start with use a book; it’s a sound beginning and we must all start somewhere.  Have fun, don’t be afraid to play with your deck and practise on your friends and family.  Make sure you read the part about the ethics of divination and remember, unless you are a registered doctor, it is not your place to diagnose illness or predict death.

Finally, what does the Tarot mean to you?  If you look at the cards as portraying an immovable vision of a fixed future, I believe you are doing yourself, and those you read for, a disservice.  If you believe that the Tarot offers a mirror to the past and a window to a possible future, you will offer your querent the opportunity to become the creator of their own destiny.  I believe that we all hold the seeds to our own potential and that the Tarot helps us to shine a light into the places of darkness where the future lies dreaming.

Walk in Beauty – Freespirit © 2006

Originally published in Witchcraft & Wicca Beltane to Lammas 2006


Card of the Day 11

Each day, I will draw a card from a different deck and post here my reflections

The World: Morgan Greer

If this inspiring card has appeared in your cards today, it represents a moment of pleasure, to celebrate the simple joy of a task well done.  Or perhaps you have struggled in your journey to reach this point. If so, know that success is around the corner and keep strong, for your moment will come, just have faith in your ability to thrive.

For whatever the circumstances, completion is at hand and you may enjoy a period of rest. Use this time to consider where your next step will take you. Will you change direction? Will you keep on going further upon the same road, with a new destination in mind? Whatever you decide to do, remember it is always your choice, although as this is a big influence, spirit may be urging you to take a particular road, to fulfill an ancient destiny. For this is a major influence, its importance will be wide ranging and long lasting upon your journey.

But from here, you will choose your own destiny, for you are on course and whatever you choose to do at this moment will bring you closer to your purpose. For look at the symbolism –  the circle; the sign of infinity; even the four sacred directions themselves – each will bring you eventually full circle.

Mitakuye Oyasin – We Are All Related

Card of the Day 10

Each day, I will draw a card from a different deck and post here my reflections

The Lovers: Fey Tarot

Looking at this beautiful card, I immediately understood something of the nature of love.

The image shows a large, clumsy creature, made of earth and roots, gazing with love at a light, airy fey, who flies gracefully above and around him.

She flies upside down; her attitude demonstrates clearly that his love is reciprocated.

Gently, the two creatures touch each other: their hair, their faces. They see beyond their differences.

Perhaps each knows that the other offers something unique, for he is grounded, secure and totally at ease in his environment. She must keep moving, dancing on gentle breezes or be swiftly lost on the wind.

The Lovers is always associated with choice; it is that way with all relationships, but particularly those that come under the influence of a major arcana.

Whatever choice you face now, you are asked to consider well, for it will impact not just upon your own life, but those around you.

Whether your choice relates to work, finance or personal relationships, consider both security and that which brings you joy. For in this physical world, we need both.

We cannot simply throw caution to the wind, and perhaps this gentle air sprite has discoverd for herself, she must have an anchor on which to tether herself lest she becomes scattered and lost.

But as the ground fey has found, his soul must be fed, his passions fired and his imagination must be allowed to travel freely, for only then can he dream of something beyond his mundane life.

This card illustrates so beautifully, for all to see and understand, the power of love can overcome diversity.

Love is not blind at all: it sees everything and accepts.

Mitakuye Oyasin – We Are All Related x

Card of the Day 6

Each day, I will draw a card from a different deck and post here my reflections

Justice: Tarot of the Mermaids

We are under the influence of Justice.

She sits firmly upon her throne. It may not be comfortable, but she does not have an interest in comfort, she has a higher mission and will not be swayed by deceits.

In one hand she holds the sword of truth; in the other the scales of justice.

We see that she is unmoved by the currents that swirl around her; she remains implacable, her position firm. She responds only to the universal laws that govern us all and asks us to take responsibility for our actions.

The ancient Egyptians believed that upon passing through the veil, our deeds in this life would be judged by weighing our heart against a feather.  If the scales did not balance, we would be asked to attone for our sins, before we could proceed to the afterlife.

Before making a decision which may have long term impact upon your own life and others, you are asked to consider wisely. Take your time and seek professional advice if you consider it is necessary. This matter deserves and needs close inspection before a sound and equitable decision can be made.

For Justice is the voice of the conscience, the universal law and the thread that binds us all.

Mitakuye Oyasin: We Are All Related