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Category Archives: Tarot

Review – The Chrysalis Tarot

The Chrysalis Tarot

Author: Toney Brooks
Artist: Holly Sierra
U.S. Games Systems, Inc.
2014
ISBN #978-1-57281-689-3

Chrysalis Tarot cover
The “Chrysalis Tarot” is a 78 card Tarot deck that comes with a 60 page companion book (LWB). It follows traditional format, with the following changes.

The Major Arcana has been retitled:

The Fool – Merlin
The Magician – Ravens
The High Priestess – Sorceress
The Empress – Gaia
The Emperor – Green Man
The Hierophant – Divine Child
The Lovers – The Lovers
The Chariot – Herne the Hunter
Justice – Ma-at
The Hermit – Storyteller
The Wheel of Fortune – Wheel
Strength – Papa Legba
The Hanged Man – Celtic Owl
Death – Ariadne
Temperance – Golden Flower
The Devil – Bella Rosa
The Tower – Kali
The Star – Elpi
The Moon – Moon
The Sun – Sun
Judgment – Phoenix
The World – Psyche

The four suits are Stones (Pentacles), Mirrors (Cups), Spirals (Wands), Scrolls (Wands). The court cards in this deck fill the function of a Troupe (an ensemble of medieval merrymakers):

The Minstrel: King of Pentacles, King of Stones
The Artiste: Queen of Pentacles, Queen of Stones
The Illusionist: Knight of Pentacles, Knight of Stones
The Acrobat: Page of Pentacles, Page of Stones
The Sojourner: King of Cups, King of Mirrors
The Watcher: Queen of Cups, Queen of Mirrors
The Dreamer: Knight of Cups, Knight of Mirrors
The Healer: Page of Cups, Page of Mirrors
The Companion: King of Wands, King of Spirals
The Muse: Queen of Wands, Queen of Spirals
The Corsair: Knight of Wands, Knight of Spirals
The Mime: Page of Wands, Page of Spirals
The Poet: King of Swords, King of Scrolls
The Weaver: Queen of Swords, Queen of Scrolls
The Visionary: Knight of Swords, Knight of Scrolls
The Pilgrim: Page of Swords, Page of Scroll

The deck and companion book come in a beautiful box with an image of the moon and butterflies on the front, and the Page of Mirrors (The Healer) on the back. In his introduction, Brooks talks about the concept of achieving your destiny in the Tarot. He also talks about the balance between ego and psyche.
The characters found in the imagery of this deck represent Otherworld characters and archetypes (Major Arcana), as well as the day to day of life … inspiration for personal reflection, intuition, and imagination (The Pips/Numbered cards), and the troupe of medieval troubadours, representing real life messengers (the Court Cards).

The cards are presented by text only (no images). Each Major Arcana card includes the new title, the traditional title, attributes, and a discussion of the card, and the symbols within it. Each Pip (numbered card) includes the card number, suit, keyword, and a discussion of the card. The Troupe (Court) Cards include the new title, the traditional title, attributes, role, and a short discussion of the card.

For example:
II Sorceress

Traditional Title: The High Priestess
Attributes: Mysticism, Magic

 Sorceress Morgan Le Fay is pictured in vibrant hues of mysticism and magic. Her talisman represents the pomegranate, food of the Otherworld, and a symbol of the Triple Goddess. We can feel the fruitful energy swirling in the background as it explodes in a crescendo of bursting light from Morgan’s hand. Woven spirals symbolize the infinite transformative energy of the sorceress.

 In your reading, Morgan points to one of your challenging encounters in attaining transformation. Morgan does her magic as the curtain that separates the seen and the unseen worlds. The ravens, insatiably curious when magic is active, swoop in to flavor her cauldron with magical synchronicity, those coincidences that confirm you’re on the right track.

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At the end of the companion book (LWB) a five card Pentagram spread (including significator) is presented.
The cards are 2  ¾” by 4 ¾”. The card backs show gold and blue imagery in each of the four corners, with a blue background in the center, covered in spirals. In the center of the card is a gold circle, with a mandala in the middle. Multi-colored butterflies appear on either end of the gold circle. The cards are reversible.

The card faces shows a gold border, with the new title and the traditional title in black lettering against a white background at the bottom of the card. The coloring on the cards is a beautiful pastel, with the imagery drawn from myth, Celtic, Pagan, Egyptian, and VooDoo traditions.

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In Ravens (The Magician), we see black ravens sitting in a tree that features an open eye in the trunk. They are playing a game with pearls, which represent moonlight, mysticism, and synchronicity.

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One of the cards that I feel represent the traditional archetype well if Green Man (The Emperor). We see the face of the Green Man in the foliage, looking down on a birds nest, with his companion butterfly in the upper left hand corner.

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Bella Rosa (The Devil) is another card that represents the traditional archetype very well. The mystical figure wears a mask as she looks out from the card, which symbolizes who she really is deep within. She wars

A beautifully done hat, while carrying a rose in her right hand, and a mirror in her left hand. We see an infinity symbol to her right.

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The Aces are very simple cards. The Ace of Stones shows a sacred megalith.

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The Ten of Mirrors is a beautiful card, showing a rainbow colored dove of peace in flight in the center, against a blue background. The dove carries ten mirrors that represent an emerging new cycle.

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The Pilgrim (Page of Scrolls) shows a figure dressed in a lilac tunic with a darker lavender skirt. She carries a lantern in her right hand, a staff in her left. In the upper left hand corner we see a butterfly, with an animal of some type behind her right shoulder.

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The Companion (King of Spirals) shows a male figure, seated on a stool, with a small bird at his feet.

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The Weaver (Queen of Scrolls) shows a female figure, in a light lavender dress, at work. There is an orange tabby cat in a basket at her feet.

I found the imagery well done, but not always reflecting the traditional meaning (such as the tear the Sun is shedding). The inclusion of both the new title and the traditional title on the card to me is disruptive. If you want to retitle a card, then use that title, and that title alone, on the card.

Redefining the Court Cards as Troupe seems to diminish, rather than expand, the nature of the card.

I found this deck nicely illustrated, and the notes in the LWB well written. While this deck is easy to read with, I would not use it as a learning deck.

(c) 2000 – 2014 Bonnie Cehovet

Reproduction prohibited without written permission from the author.

 
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Posted by on June 7, 2014 in Tarot

 

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Review – Dark Goddess Tarot Companion

Dark Goddess Tarot Companion

Author: Ellen Lorenzi-Prince
Natural Press
2014
ISBN #978-0-9894739-1-0

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The “Dark Goddess Tarot” is based, quite literally, on dark goddesses … goddesses who, as Ellen notes in her introduction, represent aspects of life that people may be uncomfortable with, such as the powers of age and death, sex and sovereignty, ferocity and judgment, suffering and shadow, magic, mystery, and transformation. To be worked with to the depths that they were created for, there needed to be a companion book … a guide into this vast expanse of feminine wisdom. And so it shall be … and so it is. A 172 page book of wonders, written by Ellen Lorenzi-Prince as only she can write … an intuitive guide into some of the strongest powers that you will ever encounter!

A bit of background about the deck: It follows a traditional structure, elemental: Fire, Water, Air, and Earth. In choosing goddesses for each suit, attention was paid to elemental affinity, as well as the meaning of the card. The court cards are renamed to represent fearsome female powers:  Amazon (fierce and independent), Siren (sexuality), Witch (practitioner of magic), and Hag (one who walks with death). I love that the deck is NOT meant to be used with reversals! There are specific instructions for working with the energies of each card … to show respect, to honor the energy, and to protect one’s self. Probably the best advice … to suspend ones disbelief. In the companion book, each card is dedicated to someone in Ellen’s life that for her has a connection to that energy.

Each Major Arcana card is presented with a black and white photo, who the card is dedicated to, the card name and number, the associated goddess, what the goddess represents, and what happens when she appears in a reading. For instance … the Fool is dedicated to Mary Greer. The mythological figure represented is the Sheela Na Gig, the British Spirit of Warning and Invitation. When this card appears in a reading, the Seeker is advised to open their eyes, to not see only what they already know, to release expectation and judgment, and to allow wisdom to come in unexpected ways.

The introduction to the Minor Arcana give a short summation of the elemental nature of the suits, and a listing of the goddesses for each suit. Each card is presented with a black and white photo, who the card is dedicated to, the suit and card number (title and card number for the court cards), the associated goddess, what the goddess represents, and what happens when she appears in a reading.

At the end of the book are several Dark Goddess Tarot Spreads: a two card Substance and Shadow spread, a three card What, Why, and How spread, a two card Dark Goddess spread (thanks to James Wells), and a five card  Goddess Be With You spread. At the end of the book we find the Dark Goddess Circle, which was inspired by an online ritual hosted by Ellen Lorenzi-Prince and Nancy Antenucci Dark Goddess Lodge.

In her introduction Ellen notes that the Dark Goddess Tarot was inspired by an intended for troubled times. In my life, I would read that as “Troubled Times”! We are not denying the pain we are going through, and we are not celebrating it … we are taking an honest look at our issues, honoring them, and then doing something about them!

This is not a deck for the faint hearted … this companion book will take the Seeker deeply into their psyche, which can be very scary territory. Proceed at your own risk … but please do proceed if you want to grow, and be all that you can be!

 © 2000 – 2014 Bonnie Cehovet

Reproduction prohibited without the written permission of the author.

 

 

 

 
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Posted by on May 19, 2014 in Tarot

 

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The Tarocchi Della Luna Nuova

2 Tarot New Moon Box 1 LQ

I just received the Tarocchi Della Luna Nuova (the New Moon Tarot) from Giordano Berti. The current offering is a repackaging of the original deck, accompanied by a 16 page pamphlet on the artist, Maria Teresa Monti, with full color illustrations.(The pamphlet is in Italian, by Giordano Berti.) This is a limited edition deck (300 copies) published by the Museo dei Tarocchi in 2008. It was published posthumously in honor of the artist by her close friend, museum curator Morena Poltronieri. It came to my attention through my friend artist/Tarotist Arnell Ando.

The cards can be seen here. my review of the deck can be seen here.

The titles are in Italian, and there is no companion book. There is a four page insert with the current deck, two pages in English, two pages in Italian. the first page discusses the deck, the second page presents the artist. In this short page, we get to know the artist, how she lived, including the fact that she added a personal interest in magic to her artist world. Note: In honor of transparency, I need to tell you that an excerpt from my original review of this deck is included in the insert. The original packaging was envelope style.

For this presentation,  Giordano Bert commissioned a sturdy, lift top box by Italian art designer Letizia Rivetti. It was handcrafted in Italy by “RINASCIMENTO: Art Style”. There are only 88 numbered copies of this box. It is done in lovely shades of brown and gold, with Imperatrice (the Empress) on the cover. The figure is surrounded by a gold border, which is surrounded by an inset border. This is an absolutely stunning box, which meets its goal of matching the quality of the artwork in the cards. Both the deck and the box carry authentication as being limited edition items. 

I am thrilled with both the box and the deck … quality craftsmanship that lends itself to working with the Tarot in a very deep manner.

For further information on how to purchase this incredible deck, please contact Giordano Berti at giordano.berti@gmail.com ..

(c) 2000 – 2014 Bonnie Cehovet

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Posted by on May 8, 2014 in Tarot

 

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Northwest Astrology & Tarot Salon – Introducing Jadzia DeForest

jadzia_deforest_tarot

In November of this year the inaugural Northwest Astrology and Tarot Salon will be held at the Breitenbush Conference Center, near Detroit, OR. (More information about the Salon can be found here – nwsalon.com.) I would like to introduce you to Jadzia DeForest, one of the Conversation Leaders for this event.

Jadzia DeForest is a Tarot reader, instructor, and author residing is Portland, Oregon. Her approach to Tarot is practical and positive; working with divination as a tool for self discovery. Jadzia is co-author to both the Tarot Learning Cards and Astrology Learning Cards decks, published through her and her husband’s company Devera Publishing & Distribution. She is also the director of a group of dedicated Cartomancy enthusiasts who are putting on the Northwest Tarot Symposium (NWTS) in Portland in March of 2015.

 At the Northwest Astrology and Tarot Salon, Jadzia will be leading a conversation on Tarot in our modern world. How do you see the traditional meanings in the Tarot carry forward to our high-tech, fast-paced society? With her, you’ll explore this question and more. The conversation will revolve around modern imagery decks, how as a reader you may apply updated card meanings, and what does the modern Tarot look like in a world that doesn’t have Pages or Knights.

 You can find Jadzia online at several locations. Learn about her publications at www.DeveraPublishing.com. For readings, classes, and workshops she’s at www.TarotByJadzia.com. Northwest Tarot Symposium information is at www.NWTarotSymposium.com and on Facebook.

(c) 2000 – 2014 Bonnie Cehovet

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Posted by on May 7, 2014 in Tarot

 

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Networking & Tarot Conferences


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It is amazing to me how things have changed over the years that I have been connected to the Tarot world through the Internet (way back to 1997). As the Internet expanded, and we all got to know each other better, Tarot gatherings (under many different names) started popping up. They allowed us to meet each other in person, and to share out wisdom through conferences and classes. Many new friendships were forged, and many projects born. Whether you call them conferences, seminars, or by some other name, they are worthwhile venues. They are also expensive. What I would suggest is that at some point in time each year, we each take a look at the conferences/seminars being offered, and decide if we can afford to go, and, if so,  which ones we want to attend.

Just how do we do that … decide which ones we want to attend? I would look at the following:

1. Where is  the venue? East coast … west coast … middle america. Where is it most convenient to travel to.

2. Who are the presenters? Are they offering something of value that you want to learn?

3. Is there going to be a marketplace, where books and decks are being offered for sale? If you are an artist or an author, how much would it cost you to present your product?

4. Is there a discount for accomodations in connection with the conference/seminar? Are there reasonably priced accomodations nearby?

5. When is the event taking place? Does it fit into your schedule.

There are three events that I am going to talk about in this blog. There are many more, but these are the ones t hat I know about. The first one is the Reader’s Studio, founded by Ruth Ann and Wald Amberstone of The Tarot School. It takes place in April, in New York City. I have attended several times, and was always happy that I did. More information on The Reader’s Studio can be found here. They SOLD OUT for 2014! How amazing is that!

A unique venue is being offered for the first time in November of this year. Founder Toni Gilbert is hosting the Northwest Astrology & Tarot Salon iat Brietenbush  Hotsprings, Detroit, OR. Conversation Leaders for 2014 include Toni Gilbert, Paul Nagy, Isha Lerner, Christine Payne-Towler, Jadzia DeForest, Robert Volkmann, Mary Jo Wevers, Alan Stein, and Cynthia Giles. There is an open group page on Facebook where everyone is free to ask questions and comment.

Another unique venue, the Northwest Tarot Symposium, is being offered for the first time  in March of 2015, in Portland,OR. Hosted by Jadzia and Jay DeForest, founders of Devera Publishing, the symposium will focus on Tarot, Lenormand, Oracle, and Cartomancy. More information can be found here.

I do not often make major errors … but in this blog, I did. If you are reading this now, you are reading corrected copy. The initial blog presented three Tarot venues, not four. And the venue that was unintentionally left out has been a MAJOR presence on the west coast for twenty-three years. My apologies to Thalassa, and the Daughters of Divination, for neglecting to present their information! Great effort goes into this symposium every year, and they certainly deserve recognition. And as readers of this column, you deserve to know about them!  Hosted by Thalassa and the DoD, BATS (the Bay Area Tarot Symposium), it will be taking place in August of this year in San Jose, CA. There is always mischief and mayhem at BATS … check it out! They can also be found on Facebook.

These are just four of many venues being offered to network and share Tarot, astrology, and other oracle wisdom. They are a wonderful way to meet people, network, and ck up some valuable tips!

Note: The Emperor is from the Magdalene Legacy Tarot, Casey DuHamel and Deborah L. Shutek-Jackson, Grail Quest Press, 2014.

(c) 2000 – 2014 Bonnie Cehovet

Reproduction prohibited without written permission of the author.

 

 
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Posted by on April 19, 2014 in non-Tarot divination, Tarot

 

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Northwest Astrology & Tarot – Introducing Isha Lerner

isha edit

In November of this year the inaugural Northwest Astrology and Tarot Salon will be held at the Breitenbush Conference Center, near Detroit, OR. (More information about the Salon can be found here – nwsalon.com) I would like to introduce you to Isha Lerner, one of the Conversation Leaders for this event.

Isha Lerner is an international astrologer, owner of The Power of Flowers Healing Essence Company, and has co-authored the best-selling Inner Child Cards: A Fairy Tale Tarot (published 1993 by Bear and Company) which illustrates the transformative relationship between fairy tales and human development. She is also co-author of The Triple Goddess Tarot, The Power of Flowers book/deck set and The Tarot of the Four Elements.

A long-time writer for numerous periodicals, including Welcome to Planet Earth, Healing Currents, Planet Lightworker and Children of the New Earth, she has also been a guest columnist for several newspapers and journals. You can listen to her latest interview on New Dimension’s Radio with Justine Willis-Toms on the topic of Fairy Tales as the Liberators of the Soul:

http://www.newdimensions.org/about-new-dimensions/

She was a member of the Findhorn Community in northern Scotland from 1976 to 1981 where she was privileged to live and work within the magical gardens and experience within community framework co-creative principles between nature and humanity.
Her work has grown out of the powerful impact of those early years of personal growth and the experiences of global connectedness they brought her.

She lives in Eugene, Oregon where she has raised three daughters: Gabriella, Katya and Sophia, and has one precious granddaughter and a grandson on the way!

The topic that Isha will be covering is Your Cosmic DNA – Astrology: The Code of Karma, Destiny, and Self-Realization.

You can find out more about Isha below:

www.ishalerner.com
New and Full Moon Reports: http://www.ishalerner.com/page_37926/Chinese%20New%20Year%20of%20the%20Horse%20Sourcing%20Individu
Publications: http://www.ishalerner.com/tarot
Power of Flower Essence Company: http://www.ishalerner.com/home/is2/cpage_9/flower_essences.html

(c) 2000 – 2014 Bonnie Cehovet

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Posted by on April 9, 2014 in Tarot

 

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Review – Tarot Learning Cards

Tarot Learning Cards -

Key Meanings & Associations

Self Study Flash Cards

Author: Jay DeForest, Jadzia DeForest
Living Magick Publishing
2013
Second Edition
ISBN #978-0-9858321-7-9

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The “Tarot Learning Cards” are part of the Living Magick Learning Cards (r) Series. In a nutshell, the DeForests have created a tool for finding basic information that is readily accessible, at a nominal cost. Individuals progress at their own pace, through the use of flash cards.

This is the second edition of this deck. It comes as a set that includes 78 cards and a 12 page companion book. The box is heavy duty, has a lift off top, and is done in white and green, with black lettering. Basic card information and a sample card (the Ace of Cups) is featured on the box cover, with further information on the back.

The companion book discusses the books intention (a teaching vehicle for beginners using generally accepted information for each card), how to use the deck, the suits and elements, numerology in assciation with the Tarot, the Court Cards, reversals, and terminology, along with rcommended reading.
The cards themselves are 3.75″ by 5.25″, and of sturdy card stock. The cards follow the green and white theme of the card box … both front and back show a white border, followed by a dark green border, followed by a beige border.

The card face for the pips (numbered cards) shows the suit icon, with the card number and suit in text along the bottom. The Court Cards show the suit icon in the middle of the card, set against a court symbol (Page – Heraldic Banner, Knight – Shield) or above the suit icon (Queen – Queen’s Crown, King – King’s Crown). The Major Arcana shows the card number in Roman Numerals, with the card title beneath it.

On the card back for the Major Arcana we see the card theme, astological association, Major Arcana, and keywords for both upright and reversed meanings. On the card back of the pips we see the theme, the suit associations, numerological meaning, and keywords for both upright and reversed meanings. On the card back for the Court Cards we see the the card association, the suit association, elemental association (and associated signs), and keywords for both upright and reversed meanings.

 

Sample: Ace of Cups (Upright)

Theme: Inspiration
Cups: Love, Happiness, Spirituality
Keywords: New relationship, Fertility, New Home, Renewal, Rekindling a Relationship, Spiritual Insight

Sample: Ace of Cups (Reversed)

Theme: Selfishness
Cups: Love, Happiness, Spirituality
Keywords: Emptiness, Depression, Self-absorbed, Unbalanced, Blocked Spiritual Growth, Infertility

Sample: The Devil (Upright)

Theme: Bondage
Astrology: Capricorn
Major Arcana: Spiritual Journey
Keywords: Self Bondage, Fear, Guilt, Envy, Self Restriction, Jealousy, Lust, Shame, Dark Side of Self

Sample: The Devil (Reversed)
Theme: Extremes
Major Arcana: Spiritual Journey
Keywords: Hedonism, Puritanism, Weakness, Strength, Vanity, Humility, Feeling Trapped, Releasing Yourself

All text, no imagery (other that the suit and court card icons) make these cards very easy to use, no matter which Tarot deck you are working with.

As with the First Edition, I advise purchasing the Tarot Quick Reference Sheet, and the Tarot Reversals Quick Reference Sheet to go with the cards. The cards themselves are the learning tools, while the study sheets function well as quick references for interpreting readings.

© 2000 – 2014 Bonnie Cehovet

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Posted by on March 27, 2014 in Tarot

 

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Northwest Astrology & Tarot Salon – Introducing Christine Payne-Towler

Christine Payne-Towler 2

In November of this year the inaugural Northwest Astrology and Tarot Salon will be held at the Breitenbush Conference Center, near Detroit, OR. (More information about the Salon can be found here – nwsalon.com.) I would like to introduce you to Christine Payne-Towler, one of the Conversation Leaders for this event.

As a Conversation Leader, Christine will be focusing on Ancient Astrology. Here is a taste of what to expect from Christine!

“All of the Oracles of Western culture rest in the matrix of astrology one way or another. Sometimes they borrow the basic ingredients of the astrological cosmos (planets, signs, seasons or elements), Sometimes they borrow the format of astrology (tabulating their results in house-wheel type charts, or analyzing them according to astrological categories).

Sometimes they are tied up with the letters of the Magical Alphabet, which is inherently astrological as well. Astrology also provides the “container” and motive power for the alchemical Great Work, whether that is conceived as being spagyric, psychological, or spiritual in scope. Therefore it helps Tarot people to have some exposure to the basic aspects of the astrological world-view held by the people among whom Tarot first appeared. Putting these two symbol-sets together has the power to super-charge your readings and Tarot meditations.

Christine will use her own pack made with Michael Dowers, the Tarot of the Holy Light, as well as others that have appeared across the history of Tarot, to illustrate the magical and astral assumptions that govern the progression of the Trumps and the personalities of the minor cards. Those who have their charts with them will be able to see how different decks and systems illustrate their private psyche, and why they might consider choosing their deck based on what it has to say about their chart.

Several decks will be aid out in a Zodiacal manner, so that we can all see what happens when we play with the correspondences that represent different historical stages of Tarot’s development. We will also be able to see how our own charts “pencil out” according to the different systems. What fun!
You can see more of Christine’s work on her site, http://www.tarotarkletters.com/.

(c) 2000 – 2014 Bonnie Cehovet

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Posted by on March 25, 2014 in Tarot

 

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Review – The Magdalene Legacy Tarot

The Magdalene Legacy Tarot

Author: Casey DuHamel
Artist: Deborah L. Shutek-Jackson
Grail Quest Press
2014

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“The Magdalene Legacy Tarot – Lost Keys of the Madonna” is a limited first edition run of 500 signed and numbered copies. I was impressed by the presentation of the certificate … it comes in a bright red envelope, which so reminded me of the envelopes that my Asian friends use to gift money in. Very classy! The box and the companion book show a clean white background, with an entwined red rose and white lily. This speaks tons as to what this deck is all about, and what you will find in the companion book!

This is a 78 card deck, following traditional titles for the Major Arcana. The suits are Cups, Disks(Pentacles), Staffs (Wands), and Quills (Swords). The Court Cards are King, Queen, Knight, and Knave.

Unique to this deck, the Court cards represent specific royal Grail families. Each of three Court suits represents one of the three pivotal figures of the epic, with the fourth suit representing the medium uniting all three figures. Each court card contains that figure’s religious correspondence and their “Magdalene” icon, including a skull, a cross/crucifix, an alabaster jar, and an open book. Cups represent The Holy Grail, Mary Magdalene; Disks represent Jesus; Staffs represent John the Baptist; Quills represent the Gnostic scripture and secret gospels that unite the other three.

The Court card dynasties are Cups (Merovingian), Disks (House of Medici), Staffs (Clan Sincair), and Quills (the House of Windsor). Samples of Court card personalities include King of Cups (Clovis the 1st), Knight of Disks (Giovanni de Medici), Queen of Staffs (Marjory Sutherland), and Knave of Quills (Prince William of Wales).

I have always been impressed with Margaret Starbird’s work (including “Woman With the Alabaster Jar: Mary Magdalene and the Holy Grail”), which is part of the foundation for this deck. Which also means that I am a bit in awe of these cards! I love the comments that Christine Payne-Towler made about the use of the Picard minors, which puts this deck in with the family of Spanish Tarots.
DuHamel draws from the esoteric and hermetic traditions of Judeo/Christina mysticism, and uses the correspondences of a continental hermetic system. Most importantly, this deck celebrates a resotration of the Sacred Feminine. This is illustrated through the use of the Grail mysteries of Mariamne e Magdala … Mary Magdalene.

Fair warning … the print in the companion book is uber small! Having said that, I can read it with my glasses … no need for a magnifying glass. DuHamel discusses the background of the deck, the journey that brought her this far, the Gnostic Gospels, and much, much more.

Each Major Arcana card is presented with the associated Archangel, astrological sign, element, key words, Cabalistic path, and Hebrew letter. Each Court card is presented with the element, Tetragrammaton, card personage, and nature. Each Pip (numbered card) is presented with associations for Cabalistic world, Sephira, Key words, colors, gemstones, astrological association, Numerology, Ethereal Essence, and Mundane Essence. All cards have a small black and white scan. The Major Arcana and the Court cards have a quote, while each number in the Pips has a quote.

The small things are what attracts me, what help me in learning a new deck. DuHamel has included such niceties as charts giving the associations for the Continental, Victorian, MLT, and Modern Poker decks (including the element); the element, direction, inherent attribute, ethereal attribute, humor, quality, and season; the attributes in the Four Worlds of the Tree of Life (Worlds, Tetragamaton, Elements, Senses, Astrology, Human Qualities, Tarot Suits, and Sacred Geometry.

There is a epiloge at the end of the book, as well as illustrator’s notes, and an extensive bibliography, with recommended reading. Sample spreads include the Templar Cross, the Cross of Lorraine, and the Thirteenth Apostle.

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The cards are of rather stiff card stock. The backs show a 1/4 border, with a circle of red roses and white lilies in the center, surrounding an internal graphic, and are reversible. The card faces show a color coded border: Cups – blue, Disks – green, Staffs – red, and Quills – yellow.

The Major Arcana show the card number in Roman numerals across the top, with the card title across the bottom. Each card shows the astrological attribution and the Hebrew letter. The Court cards show the title and suit across the bottom of the card, with the healdic icon in the lower left hand corner. The Pips show the card number across the top, in Roman numerals. An upright keyword is at the top of the card, with a reversed keyword at the bottom of the card (literally reversed, so that if the card was drawn reversed the keyword could be read).

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The imagery on the High Priestess is very traditional – a female figure, seated, with a scroll in her right hand. She is seated between two pillars (one white, one black), wearing a white gown with a blue robe, her right foot resting on a crescent moon.

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The Queen of Quills (Diana, Princess of Wales) is dressed in a black dress, and is holding a red cube with three white dots running diagonally. A gold scale stands in front of her, with a red rose in front of it. In the left hand corner we see her heraldic emblem.

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The Seven of Quills shows a triangle in the upper half of the card, under the keyword “control”, with a square in the bottom half of the triangle, under the keyword “chaos”.

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The Eight of Quills shows a spoke, made of eight Quills. The upright keyword is “action”, the reversed keyword is “aversion”.

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The Knave of Disks (Giulianno de Medici) shows a dark haired youth, kneeling in a field of lilies and roses. He wears a red shirt and pants, with a green tunic. He is holding a cross in his left hand. His heraldic icon is in the left hand corner.

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The King of Staffs (William Sinclair, Baron of Roslin), shows a youthful king standing, wearing a white shirt, a plaid kilt. I his left hand is his staff of office. He stands between two pillars, over his astrological sign (Leo), with a skull and crossbones at his feet, In the lower left hand corner of the card is his heraldic icon.

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The Ten of Cups is one of my favorite cards, showing ten cups moving in an arc from the upper left hand side of the card to the lower right hand side. They follow the colors of the chakra system – red, orange, yellow, green, blue, lavender, and white. The upright keyword is “harmony”, the reversed keyword is hostility.

I am enchanted with the colors and the imagery of this deck, as well as the focus on Mary Magdalene, the Sacred Feminine, and the Grail myth. This is an exciting deck to work with! There are many nuances throughout this deck. One of these nuances is that of the World. Traditionally numbered XXI, the World is numbered XXII in this deck. Why? According to DuHamel, one reason is that the Magdalene’s feast day is July 22nd! Another reason is that the total amount of stairs to reach the top of the Magdalene Tower at Rennes-le-Chateau is 22! Lots to think about here!

(c) March 2014 Bonnie Cehovet

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Posted by on March 14, 2014 in Tarot

 

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Northwest Astrology & Tarot Salon – Introducing Alan/Adom Stein

Star Gate shop

In November of this year the inaugural Northwest Astrology and Tarot Salon will be held at the Breitenbush Conference Center, near Detroit, OR. (More information about the Salon can be found here – nwsalon.com) I would like to introduce you to Mr. Alan Stein, one of the roving Conversation Leaders for this event. Mr. Stein is currently using his spiritual name, Adom. It is under this name that he will be attending the Salon.

As a roving conversation leader, Adom brings a well rounded understanding and appreciation to this incredible new shifting times toward evolutionary spiritual growth and integration. He is kind hearted, easy to talk to, and dedicated to your personal spiritual evolution with his intuition and background.

He is the sole proprietor of a new age bookstore for 27 years called Star Gate Awareness Resources in Eugene OR. This keeps him in current time with these amazing breakthroughs happening on the planet. This fits in well with the intention of the Salon – to bring about open conversations on personal development and self-empowerment. Adom will be bringing books and decks to the Salon!

Adom is currently writing a book in which he speaks of the essence of the original Traditional Hopi Prophecy message and teachings, and the need to return to balance by becoming One Hearted. The book is entitled ” Hopi Prophecy Now – The Mystery Egg “.

Direct quote from Adom: “You are guaranteed to have engaging deep conversation and reflection or double your karma back!”

You can see more about the work Alan/Adom is doing on his store’s site – http://www.stargateeugene.com/.

(c) March 2014 Bonnie Cehovet

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Posted by on March 12, 2014 in Tarot

 

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