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Category Archives: Tarot

The World of Magazines

magazines cover

What do magazines have to tell us? What place do they serve in our lives? There are all kinds of magazines, from the very, very general to the very, very specific. Today I am going to talk about magazines that focus on the world of divination – specifically Tarot, Lenormand, and oracle decks. We are going to look at two publications – The Cartomancer, a print quarterly that will have its birth into the real world in January of 2015, and Attune Magazine, a digital quarterly that has been with us for some time now.

The Cartomancer

The Cartomancer is a print quarterly, founded by Jadzia and Jay DeForest (Devera Publishing). The focus is on Tarot, the Lenormand, and oracle decks. The magazine will include articles, columns, book and deck reviews, art, advertising, and more. In a sense of transparency, I need to tell you that I am on the editorial staff. I will be contributing to the magazine, and I encourage all of you that have something to offer to submit your work too! You can also advertise your work here, which I think is a huge bonus, as the magazine is targeted to a specific audience. I am looking forward to seeing how well this magazine does. For more information, here is the link to The Cartomancer website. There is also a Facebook group that can be found here.

Atune Magazne cover

Attune Magazine is a digital quarterly founded by Mary Nale and Bill Back. The focus is on Tarot, the Lenormand, and oracle decks, as well as other things within the world of divination. The magazine includes articles, columns, book and deck reviews, poetry, videos, advertising, and more. Attune Magazine is also targeted to a specific audience, so advertising here is a bonus for your work. This magazine just keeps getting better and better! or more information, here is the ink to Attune Magazine. They also have a Facebook group which can be found here.

So, why exactly do I find magazines interesting, if not essential? Magazines put in one small space a lot of information on defined topics. I subscribe to fashion magazines, to financial magazines, to whatever magazines ill in the niche where I feel that I need information. I like the mix of text and images in magazines, and the articles are (usually) of a length where I can read  them in one sitting. I have gotten a tremendous amount of ideas from magazines – they have expanded my thinking, and my world. With these two specific magazines, we have the opportunity to express ourselves, and to grow both personally and professionally. I hope that you take the time to check them both out!

(c) 2000 – 2014 Bonnie Cehovet

Reproduction prohibited without the written permission of the author.

 
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Posted by on December 5, 2014 in non-Tarot divination, Tarot

 

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Tarot – The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly

professionalism

Those who are reading this will most likely be, like me, someone who walks in the world of Tarot. Like any world (professional or non-professional), it has its issues. Lately I have seen more than a few of the shadow sides of Tarot. Cyber bullying, poor business practices, posts on social media sites that are major rants, and that draw commentary that just adds fuel to the fire.

There are real issues out there – people who are known bullies, people who throw their weight around without thought of the consequences, and people that want to out those that connect professionally with less than stellar individuals/organizations.

I don’t think we gain anything in flame wars. We spend way too much time either attacking someone, outing someone, or defending either ourselves, or someone else. There are worlds within worlds in the Tarot community, and we all need to recognize that. Some of the people in those worlds are professionals, some are there to add the study of Tarot to their life skills. We all need to respect each other.

Taking responsibility for ourselves – for what we say, and for our actions – is of paramount importance. Recognize that in the real world we are who we are, but we are also who we associate with. Agreeing to work with a person or organization has consequences. You may view it as a limited connection, perhaps for a specific project. Other people may view it as you aligning yourself with the person or organization that you are working with.

The consequences of working with an individual or organization that is perceived poorly can be far reaching. Your reputation is at stake here, as well as your ability to earn a living. You could very well be boycotted.

Before you decide to enter a project of any kind, take a close look at who you will be working with, and how they are perceived. Use Google to check out everything that you can. Quietly (as in a pm, not a public post) query friends and business acquaintances about any dealings they may have had with the individual or organization. Ask their opinion about what you are considering doing. The decision is yours in the end, but it needs to be an informed decision.

In my opinion, while someone’s work does represent them, so do their actions, and the actions of those they associate with. There are people in the Tarot world that I will not associate with, that I will not work with. I don’t find the need to announce it, but I do feel better for it. I have to look in the mirror every morning, and I don’t want to have any questions about who I am, where I am headed, or what mask I am wearing.

Let’s be real, let’s be transparent, and let’s support each other in an authentic manner.

 © 2000 – 2014 Bonnie Cehovet
Reproduction prohibited without the written permission of the author.

 
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Posted by on November 20, 2014 in Tarot

 

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Review – The Tarot Readers Companion

The Tarot Reading Companion

Author: Thirteen
Aeclectic Tarot
2014
ISBN #978-0-9871104-6-6

 Tarot Reading Companion cover

The Tarot Reading Companion is exactly that – a companion on your journey of Tarot reading. Included are both upright and reversed meanings for all 78 cards, instructions on how to read the cards, sample spreads (including one card readings, past/preset/future readings, relationship readings, and the Horseshoe Spread), and a resource guide.

Note: The Tarot card images in this e-book are from the Sacred Isle Tarot, by David Higgins.

The book starts out by noting that the best way to use it is to take in what seems important to you personally. In other words, start wherever you want to start, and go from there. This encourages Tarot students of all levels to make best use of this material. Perhaps you are a beginner, unfamiliar with how to do a reading, and unfamiliar with the card meanings. There is a section on how to read, and sections on both the upright and reversed card meanings. Perhaps you want to go straight to the reversed meanings, or you want to check out the templates for a diverse group of spreads. Or perhaps you want to check out the Tarot resources section. There is no one way to work with this book!

The card meanings are basic meanings, meant to be built upon as you continue your work with the Tarot. It is suggested that the cards have a range of meanings, rather than one specific meaning. The student is encouraged to trust their intuition, and proceed with their studies at their own pace.

Each card is presented with a beautiful, full color illustration, a listing of the common symbols, the basic story, the basic meaning of the card, and Thirteen’s observations about the card.

For The Fool, the common symbols are listed as the Fool in colorful motley, the pack tied to a staff, a small dog, and a cliff. The basic story talks about the journey that the Fool is on. The basic meaning of the card is one of infinite possibilities. In Thirteen’s observations of the Fool, she talks about the Fool ultimately standing for new beginnings, with the Fool representing the querent. The Fool can also be naive, or overly optimistic.

In the section on reading the cards, Thirteen talks about reading with and without a spread, specific card positions within a spread, sequences and patterns, and using the right spread. She then addresses asking the right question, and how Yes/No questions can be limiting. “How”, “What”, and “Why” questions tend to open things up a bit more.

I love that Thirteen addresses doing the same reading over and over again! I feel the same way that she does … you will annoy your cards big time! She also makes the very astute observation that it is best to wait to read for others until you have a good understanding of the card meanings, and feel comfortable working with them.

She also notes that the Tarot reader’s job is to deliver the Tarot’s answer to the querent’s question, not the reader’s answer. Certainly our own perception can act as a filter for interpreting the cards, but the reader really needs to get out of their own way and deliver the message within the cards, the message that spirit wants delivered. Thirteen advises that the reader trust their instincts, and trust their cards. She notes that the cards show the future that the querent is creating for themselves.

Each spread is presented with a sample reading – which is accompanied by full color images of the cards drawn. The deck used, the Sacred Isle Tarot, is absolutely gorgeous!

Under reading reversals, Thirteen notes that three of the most common ways to read them are opposite (the opposite energy to the upright meaning), blockage (the energy of the card is blocked or diminished), and upside-down image.

The resource guide includes asking Thirteen questions on the Aeclectic Tarot Forum, suggested decks to use with this book, and sending feedback to Aeclectic Tarot about the book.

I found this to be an easy to use reference book that covers the basics, and will open the door to anyone who wants to learn to read the Tarot.

 © 2000 – 2014 Bonnie Cehovet
Reproduction prohibited without permission of he author.

 
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Posted by on November 18, 2014 in Tarot

 

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Review – Tarot Lovers’ Calendar 2015

Tarot Lovers’ Calendar 2015

Creator: Major Tom Schick
Artists: varied
Independently Published
2014

Tarot Lovers' Calendar 2015 cover

Where to begin … there is nothing that I don’t like about this calendar! I appreciate the size (8.5″ by 11″), the fact that it is spiral bound (ease of use), the fact that it is Tarot themed, and the fact that it highlights different artists every year. Yes, I have followed this deck for years! (It has been available in limited edition for 14 years running!) The quality and intent of the creator, Major Tom Schick, is matched toe to toe by the distributor, Devera Publishing.

This is a highly usable calendar, as well as being a collectible. Every year that I have purchased this deck, I have kept it – this is art presented in a quality format.

This year’s artists include Blue Gene (Astral Scion Tarot),Taylor Ellis (The Ellis Deck), Aquarius Wellbeing (Irish Lenormand), M. M. Meleen (Tabula Mundi Tarot), Heather Mendel (The Syzygy Oracle), Lisa de St, Croix (Tarot de St. Croix), Katrina Wynne (Katrina’s Personal Petite Lenormand), Beth Seilonen (The Compound Tarot),Rachel Paul (The Dark Carnival Tarot), Fionan Benjamin & Nghia Hoang (Lux Ferous Tarot), Eleanor Boyce (The Singing Serpent Tarot), and Gaby Merman (The FaYth Tarot).

Information printed on the calendar includes Full Moon, Last Quarter Moon, New Moon, and First Quarter Moon, as well as dates for meteor showers. The days of the week are listed straight across – Sunday through Saturday, with enough room to make notes for the day. (If you keep your calendars, you then have a collectible history of Tarot artists, and a personal living history through your notes). Also included are the artists name, the name of the deck, when it will become available, and where to find it.

Each deck represented includes full color images, along with a short write-up from the artist. I really liked this, because it allows us to take a short journey into the mindset of the artist, and the creation process for their deck. For example, Blue Gene talks about putting his thoughts about a deck into action when he decided to join the Tarot Deck Creators Facebook group. We find that Taylor Ellis was influenced by David Palladini’s “Aquarian Tarot”, and that Heather Mendel brings together Tarot, Kabbalah, and the Hebrew alphabet to honor the Sacred Feminine.

Among my favorite images is the IV of Pentacles (Blue Gene, Astral Scion Tarot), which features a male figure, in a business suit and bright red tie, pointing out from the card. I also loved the simplicity of Key (Lynn Boyle, The Irish Lenormand), and Reflecting (Heather Mendel, The Syzygy Oracle), which features a beautiful spiders web. Both of the very colorful images from the Dark Carnival Tarot (Rachel Paul) brought a smile to my face!

Some of these decks I have seen on the Internet, some I have in hand, and some are now on my wish list! An incredible journey into art and divination, for a very small price of admission!

 © 2000 – 2015 Bonnie Cehovet

 
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Posted by on November 8, 2014 in Tarot

 

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To App Or Not To App

“To App or Not To App, that is the question”
Shakespeare revised!

Many thanks to Ron Leong (Tarot eCards) for sharing Shakespeare revised and this recurring question! Apps play a huge role in our digital world and have expanded our capabilities to a phenomenal degree. Unfortunately, the Tarot world has not exactly embraced Tarot apps. IMHO, that is a shame since Tarot apps can expand the use and popularity of Tarot. The same people who question why there is a need for more than one Tarot deck, question why there is a need for more than one Tarot app (if they have checked out Tarot apps at all).

Personally, I am an advocate of Tarot apps. I was, shall we say, not quite ready to upgrade my cell, when I came to the conclusion that I needed to do so to investigate the world of Tarot apps. (And other app worlds – my airline boarding passes are now held on my iPhone!) I found a whole new world out there … one that could travel with me!

I discovered different Tarot apps will offer different things. You will see card meanings, various card spreads, the ability to create your own card spread, journaling your readings, the ability to e-mail readings, and at times a link to purchase a given deck. How much or how little you choose to use of each apps capabilities is up to you.

And technology advances are continually being applied to upgrade our Tarot experience. Tarot eCards has created an innovative and unique multi-deck Tarot app where a single app works with all their decks. Their app even allows the user to change and enlarge the type size for better readability, and to magnify the images for selective studying.

Karyn Easton of Paranormality.com (along with David Wong) has developed a series of apps for her deck,the Tarot Lovers’ Tarot. This includes “Discover”, which works with Tarot card meanings; “Combine”, which works with Tarot card combinations; “Challenge”, which tests Tarot knowledge; and “Reveal”, which shows your destiny through the Tarot.

I am pleased to see that many of my favorite decks, including the Tarot of the Holy Light, the Shadowscapes Tarot, the Paulina Tarot, the Gaian Tarot, the Hezicos Tarot, the Whispering Tarot, and the Tarot of Ceremonial Magick are available in  a digital version as an app.

You have my views from the point of an end user. I would like to offer you another perspective on Tarot apps, from the point of view of an app developer – Mr. Ron Leong, of  TaroteCards.com. Ron believes that Tarot apps are an enabling technology that can enhance the Tarot user experience  and expand the popularity of Tarot. The apps make Tarot convenient to carry around and acquire, easily accessible anytime and anywhere, easy to use and less costly. Apps can bring to the Tarot community out-of-print decks, limited edition titles, and new decks without the expense, hassle and distribution hurdles of printed decks. The Tarot world needs to recognize that apps are a great complement to the printed version, not a replacement. The decision to use apps need not be viewed as an either/or decision but both formats can coexist the way digital music, movies and books exist with the “physical” versions.

You can even try out the Tarot eCards App Free which can be downloaded at www.appstore.com/TaroteCards – it includes a free copy of RWS2.0 Rider-Waite-Smith Tarot. Only available for the iPhone and iPad but an Android version will be released soon.

My reviews on the Tarot app world can be found here – http://theworldoftarot.wordpress.com/2013/09/15/review-tarot-ecards-app/, http://paranormality.com/. For reviews on specific deck apps, go to my site, bonniecehovet.com.

A listing of Tarot card app providers can be found here – Tarot On The Go.

This list, of course, does not include all of the Tarot apps available. To see if a deck that you might be interested in has an app that you can work with, just Google the name of the deck, followed by the word “app”. Magic via the Internet!

The holidays are coming up … this is the first in a series of blogs focusing on what is available in the Tarot world for holiday gifting. I hope that you at least check out the world of Tarot apps … it is a fascinating and empowering world!

Additional Blogs:

Tarot Books: http://bonniecehovet.wordpress.com/2014/11/06/time-to-think-holiday-shopping/

Tarot Decks: http://bonniecehovet.wordpress.com/2014/11/12/time-to-think-about-holiday-shopping-part-2/

 © 2000 – 2014 Bonnie Cehovet
Reproduction prohibited without the written permission of the author.

 

 

 
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Posted by on November 1, 2014 in Tarot

 

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Review – Tarot For Cats

Tarot For Cats -
Unlock the Mysteries of Your Nine Lives

Author: Regen Dennis
Artist: Kipling West
MacMillan
1996

 Tarot For Cats cover

I was very excited when my friend Jamie Morris gifted me with this deck. I love the Tarot, I love cats (I have three male cats at present), and I love the two combined. The cards and 68 page companion book come in a lovely box where they can be pulled out of the side. The front of the box features what appears to be an orange tabby as High Priestess, while the back of the box features Magoo, a young orange shorthair that is doing his own reading to find out what awaits him at the Spay & Neuter Clinic! He drew the Tower, the Lovers, and Strength. All will be well, Magoo!

The companion book is smaller than normal (approximately 5 3/8” by 5”. The background color is a beautiful lavender, with the image of the High Priestess on the front, and the card back on the back. I love the small size… as if it contains lots of secrets! The book begins with a short history of the Tarot, a synopsis of the cards, and a short take on how to use the Tarot.

Each card is presented over two pages with a small full color image, what the card represents, the symbolism in the card, the card meanings, and what the card is as your Key Card. The meanings section of each card carries a bonus for cat lovers – a small image of different types of cats.

In the readings section at the back of the book, we see information on spreads, the question, and readings themselves. The creators of this deck offer unique spreads based around cats, each spread accompanied by a full color image. The spreads are: Bird and Pounce, Food Bowl, Pawprint, and Catnip Cross. Each spread includes a reading done for a cat. How cool is this!

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The cards are approximately 3 ¼” by 5 ¼”. The backs show a ¼” white border, surrounding a deep blue background with lighter blue imagery. In the center of the card are two cats, done in blue, looking out at the reader. The cards are reversible.

The card faces show a white border, with the card title at the bottom, in black lettering against a gold background. The art style is very clean and uncluttered (similar to the Halloween Tarot, which was also done by Kipling West). Almost hidden images in the cards are a delight – the green snake in the Wheel of Fortune, the roses and lilies on the window in the Hierophant, the globe in the Emperor, the ankh, lilies, and butterfly in Death.

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One of my favorite cards is the Empress. Here we see a beautiful white mother cat (Chinchilla), laying on a chair with her litter of kittens. Amongst the meaning are that of being creative, clever, and unique. As a Key Card, the Empress indicates that you have surrounded yourself with comfort, and that your domestic situation is secure.

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The Hermit shows a yellow cat (Asian Longhair) sitting on top of a stack of books, with a small black kitten in front of her. The front of the chest next to the cats shows a prominent lock. The Hermit is said to represent he search for truth and wisdom. As a Key Card, it is indicated that you are wise and understand the practicalities of life.

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The Magician shows a white cat (Turkish Van) on a sidewalk, with the sun and moon above him. He is surrounded by flowers, and various items on the sidewalk, including a mouse (earth), fish (water), box of matches (fire), and feather (air). In the grass in front of him we see a snake devouring its tail (the symbol for eternity).

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The Fool shows a yellow cat poised to leap off of a steep cliff after a red bird.  There is a rising sun in the background. This card is all about big change. As a Key Card, it indicates that the individual is creative, and often a trickster.
For me, there is a very “feel good” nature to this deck – it is a deck that I will pull out in difficult times.

© 2000 – 2014 Bonnie Cehovet
Reproduction prohibited without written authorization from the author.

 
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Posted by on October 10, 2014 in 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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