#TarotDaily – Temperance Rx + The High Priestess Rx (#WizardsTarot)

Today I wondered what lesson I need to learn? Where should I be focusing my energy? I drew:

I need to learn to balance my energy and focus more effectively; blend what I must do with what I want to do. It would also help if I listened to my institution, trusted my inner voice. The truth is I know what to do and how to do it but I need to listen and trust in my inner wisdom; the self-knowledge woven through my soul.

#TarotDaily – High Priestess Rx + Wheel of Fortune Rx (#TrickorTreat)

How are you stuck? What can you do to free yourself?

I’m stuck because I’m afraid to trust my intuition, my instincts; fearful of going through that doorway and facing who I am and who I am meant to be. It’s as though I know there is knowledge and wisdom available for me to use on the other side of that door but I’m reluctant to explore it.

Change. The only thing that can free me is change. Rather than being a passive participant in my own life, waiting for Fate to determine what happens next, I need to grab that damned wheel and spin it. I need to be a true witch and be the change I want to see in my life. Whatever I want to become next, will be determined by my actions now. Hesitating serves no purpose; faintheartedness won’t produce the future I desire. So I need to decide what my destination will be and plot the route to get me there.

#TarotDaily – Temperance/Art Rx + 5 of Wands Rx (#TrickorTreat)

What are you concealing from others? Is the decision to do so empowering or weakening?

I often conceal aspects of my personality from others. It’s a defense mechanism and way to avoid unnecessary conflicts. I detest pointless arguments so I tend to avoid discussing politics (especially these days), sports etc. Temperance reversed also suggests I hide aspects of my personality from myself because in some calculation methods, Temperance is one of my birth cards. I think I’m more well-rounded and blended than I admit. There are hidden depths to my psyche (despite my glib claim to being as deep as a babbling brook).

The reversed 5 of Wands reinforces the point that hiding elements if who I truly am is a pointless endeavor; an effort in futility. On one hand I may not be as discreet as I like to think. On the other hand, why bother? At this point in my life being true to myself is more important than fitting in, not that I’m usually that successful at it.

#TarotDaily – The Star Rx + 8 of Cups Rx (#AllHallows)

What is waiting within you to be realized? What is your next step?

So! I got the High Priestess again. Clearly she has a message that I’m either ignoring or not understanding. Looking at the image on that card I’m struck by the sense of hidden knowledge; wisdom being contained until I’m capable of understanding and embracing it. It’s as if the High Priestess and her Crow are speaking to me but I don’t recognize their language.

The Star Rx is pointing out that I need to look inward. In order to learn the High Priestess’ language I need to understand myself. The truth is she isn’t blocking me from finally learning what she hides; she’s protecting me from more pain. Although I present myself as though the pain and trauma of my past doesn’t hurt anymore, I’m lying to myself. If I want to heal and move forward then I need to truly release that pain and not just ignore it.

My next step is to stop trying to walk away from my emotions. I can’t run fast or far enough to escape it. I need to face it head on; stop treating my sometimes brutal past as a punchline. The reality is that I did survive but there are scars – physical, emotional and psychological. They may not be visible anymore but their energy lingers.

#TarotDaily – 5 of Stakes + Yemaya (#SacredBridges)

TarotHunter’s Silver Bullets:

  • Do not give in to despair or let desolation become a permanent mindset. Instead, trust your intuition; listen to your instincts. Reality is that eventually things will change, hopefully for the better but if you give in to defeatism you won’t be able to recognize the changes.
  • Shielding yourself from reality only works for so long; you will eventually need to face the truth. Explore spiritual ideas and practices to help you handle matters in a soul-centered, holistic, positive way.
  • Yemaya holds the key to the answers you need but you cannot see her if you don’t open you eyes, heart, mind & soul. Try communicating with your spiritual guides, listen to their answers and use them to think about your path moving forward.

#TarotDaily – High Priestess + Knight of Wands Rx (Deirdre)

TarotHunter’s Salt Rounds:

  • The High Priestess guards the mysteries and questions your worthiness to pass. If you want to be worthy of acquiring those answers you need to screw your head on straight and stop wasting your energies.
  • You set out without a plan or clear goals and now this broad with a book us asking you questions you can’t answer. What was the point of this journey?
  • You claim you’re on a quest but the answers you need to find await in the High Priestess’ book. Listen to her advice; heed her wisdom; put this knowledge to good use or you’ll never fulfill your quest.

#TarotDaily – 7 of Ghosts + High Priestess Rx

TarotHunter’s Silver Bullets:

  • Sometimes we are so distracted by our imagined desires and wants that we lose touch with who we truly are and what will provide true fulfillment & satisfaction.
  • What choices will satisfy your soul, your inner spirit? Consider before deciding.
  • Are you haunted by “what might have been?”. Are the ghosts of past decisions leaving you dissatisfied? Look deep within and find the truth. You can’t undo past bad choices but you can stop letting them taint your present and future.

When the High Priestess parts the veil

Over the last year, I’ve given a lot of thought to the High Priestess. She and I have had an on again, off again, sometimes adversarial relationship. I have always resisted seeing myself as psychic or intuitive so I felt that I had nothing in common with the High Priestess (for that matter I’ve always had a strained relationship with The Empress too but that’s another post). Anyway, while looking at the RWS High Priestess one day I was struck by something – I’ve never really considered what lies on the other side of her veil. What is she guarding, blocking, hiding? I know it’s part of her symbolism but it was something I gave only a cursory focus in a reading. At least until now.

Now I finally have an idea what awaits behind her veil – at least for me.I thought about where I am in my life right now. Turning 50 really seems to have thrown a switch in my brain. It’s as if all the previous 20-30+ years of indoctrination and assimilation just fell away; as though the shell encasing me cracked and revealed the true me. Apparently, the true me is much closer to the 13-year-old me than I ever realized. That is what was revealed to me when the High Priestess finally parted the veil. I was finally ready to see what was hidden – the true me, the “me” I was before I tried to fit in and adapt. The feral me, if you will. Quite frankly, she’s a pretty ballsy, awesome, kickass chick.

When I was a teen, my dress code was casual. Boots, jeans, plaid shirts and casual blazers. I loved that look and stuck with it for a long time. It was fine while I was in school but once I started working I needed to upgrade the wardrobe. I’ve never done corporate or dressy well and so I adapted a style that wasn’t really my own but worked. I always felt like I was wearing a costume; like a fake and a phony. However, it felt necessary in order to function effectively at my job. When I dressed too casually, my authority was questioned. So I played the game.

Once I accepted that I would never be returning to that kind of job, I reacquired some of my old favorites – jeans, boots, plaid shirts, and blazers. Of course being a fan of Supernatural means many folks assume I’m emulating the Winchesters’ style, but no, it was mine long before the Winchesters existed. Sorry for the style tangent but my point is that I feel as though I’ve reconnected to the deepest, truest me as symbolized by this style. This is who I was before I was dressing to impress.

It’s been fun and soul satisfying to reconnect to this feral, wild woman. She hasn’t been seen very much over the last few years. Or, more accurately stated, she often showed up at unexpected moments usually connected to alcohol and it wasn’t always comfortable for all involved. She was so suppressed and oppressed that I’m surprised she didn’t throw in the towel and leave the building. Thankfully, she’s as stubborn as I am and hung in there. Getting to know her again has been eye-opening. I look forward to deepening our relationship and re-learning myself.

Perhaps this is the gift, the revelation the High Priestess offers to us. She reveals our true selves once we are ready to handle that revelation. Perhaps this is why people decide to make dramatic life changes when they reach their late 40s/early 50s. Maybe what we’ve always considered mid-life crises are actually attempts to reconnect with our true selves; to find our way back to who we were meant to be. I think it’s going to be an ongoing process but I’m looking forward to the journey.

Deck Review – Minoan Tarot by Ellen Lorenzi-Prince

Okay – I want to start off with full disclosure, I received a copy of the Minoan Tarot from Ellen Lorenzi-Prince for the purposes of writing a review. I consider Ellen a friend but don’t think that will impact my review, I just want readers of this blog to be fully informed.

So, I first got a glimpse at this deck when Ellen brought its prototype to a past Readers Studio. I remember looking at the deck and feeling that it wasn’t one I might feel compelled to add to my collection. The art was lovely but I’ve never felt a real attraction to Minoan culture. In fact what I know about Minoan culture can probably be counted on one hand:

  • Minoan culture thrived on Crete and Thera before the advent of Mycenaean Greece
  • It was severely devastated by the volcanic eruption on Thera
  • It’s where the myths of the Minotaur and his labyrinth are centered
  • Among other artistic and athletic endeavors, it celebrated bull leapers (or is it bull dancers) – youths who trained to leap over bulls and display other acrobatic prowess not necessarily related to competitive endeavors.

I hope that working with this deck will give me a greater appreciation for and knowledge of  Minoan culture.

The deck is packaged in a sturdy cardboard box with an accompanying companion booklet. The booklet offers a brief introduction to Minoan art, civilization and culture as well as information about the origins of the artwork incorporated into each card. There is a lightheartedness and joyfulness to many of the images, giving me the sense that Minoan culture didn’t take themselves too seriously. I don’t get the sense of pompousness and elitism that I often feel from Greek & Roman art – as though they’re above human frailties and emotions.

According to the companion booklet, “The suits of the Minor Arcana, Earth, Sea, Sky, and Art, illustrate the great powers present in the lives of the Minoans. Earth shows children of the Mountain Mother, Sea for companions of the Ocean Father, Sky for the Lady of Heaven and Art for their own expressions of humanity. Sea and Sky are used rather than the more abstract Water and Air because these represent realms of the divine rather than elemental concepts.

The number cards for Earth, Sea, and Sky portray living creatures of those realms, as one of the hallmarks of Minoan art and religion is their exuberant embrace of the natural world around them. The number cards for the Art suit show Minoan people engaged in everyday activities.

The Minoans had no known numerology. The images are assigned to the cards by the correspondence of their energies alone. Also, they do not represent a progression of quantity , but rather stand for the selected qualities, no one of which is greater than another. The key concepts for the Ace through Ten are:

Ace – Individuality
Two – Sensitivity
Three – Creativity
Four – Practicality
Five – Adaptability
Six – Harmony
Seven – Spirituality
Eight – Power
Nine – Consciousness
Ten – Transformation

The Court Cards in the Minoan Tarot are Worker, Priestess, Master, and Mistress. The Workers relates with the energy of the suit in a physical and practical way. The Priestess expresses spiritual direction and action. The Master and Mistress are aspects of the God and Goddess as represented in the realm of Earth, Sea, Sky and Art.”

As an introduction to the deck, I asked “What will this deck teach me?” I drew Art Five, Visionary (Hermit) reversed and Earth Seven reversed. Before looking at the book, my interpretation is that working with this deck will be a struggle but it will be a fun, playful one. It will help me explore areas within myself and connect with my inner spirit but it will be an uphill climb inward. If I want to get the most from this deck I will need to be persistent and stubborn to receive the maximum benefit.

Minoan Art Five Minoan Visionary Minoan Earth Seven

For each card, Ellen offers a background on the symbolism and what it is believed to have represented to the Minoans. She also explains the origins of the artwork as well as three messages from each card. Here are the messages for the three cards I drew:

Art Five

  • Do it. Show people what you’ve got
  • Respect your rules but push your boundaries
  • Your struggle will make you stronger. Consider if it will make you wiser.

Visionary

  • Seek the thousand inner senses
  • What shines cannot be seen at noon
  • Give yourself time for wisdom to grow

Earth Seven

  • Leave the crowd behind to get a clearer look at the whole
  • Have no fear of a challenge, you are up to it.
  • Take the path a step at a time. Make each step sure, strong and agile.

I think each of these messages fits with my take on the card, which means that while these card meaning might not be standard RWS, they are somewhat intuitive.

A few other favorite cards I pulled from the deck include:

Minoan Art Eight Minoan Earth Worker Minoan Sea Ace Minoan Sky Ten

Art Eight, Earth Worker, Sea Ace, Sky Ten – these cards give you a taste of how Minoans viewed the world around them and their connection to it.  They seem to play with the bulls rather than trying to dominate and control them.  There is a lightness and playfulness to the art that vibrates off the cards.  I want to dance and play with these charming people and the creatures that inhabit their world.

Minoan Oracle Minoan Earth Priestess

I especially love the images on the Oracle and Earth Priestess because they show two different aspects of the Snake Goddess, one of my favorite goddess images. She touches my heart with her serenity and simple strength. She has no fear of the snakes and wears them as ornamentation to show her connection with them. I don’t get a sense of domination but of collaboration and cooperation.  I can almost hear them whispering secret knowledge in her ears as she nods her head in understanding.

Minoan Ecstasy

Ecstasy also makes me smile. The dancing priestess is lost in her groove. I feel a sense of ecstasy and pure joy shine through this card. It reminds me of a line from a 70s song Magnet and Steel, “You’re a woman who’s lost in your song.” She has surrendered to the rhythms coursing through her body and celebrates them. She is not truly lost forever but is in a moment of trance, of divine connection. She reminds me of a Sufi dervish, using her dance to create an ecstatic trance state that connects her with the sacred; with the Universe.

There are many lovely cards in this deck all offering glimpses into Minoan art and culture but does that make it a good Tarot deck? I’m sure we’ve all had experiences of purchasing a deck that looks lovely but doesn’t speak to us (I’m something refer to this as a dumb ditz deck). If a deck is lovely to look at but has no depth or character then I often find them useless. I don’t feel this way about this deck. In fact I’d describe it as just the opposite – I think this deck will prove to have quite a learning curve because there is so much meaning and symbolism to be unearth and teased out from each card. This deck strikes me as one that will lead its users down the path to learning more about Minoan culture so that you can acquire greater depth of understanding the symbolism and meanings of these cards. Of course I also think it’s entirely possible to work with this deck and use the imagery to develop your own intuitive meanings without any further knowledge of Minoan culture. It’s a matter of preference.

My biggest complaint about this deck is it’s size. They are the same size as the Dark Goddess Tarot which means the deck will be difficult to shuffle for someone with small hands. I consider myself to have medium-size hands and I find them a challenge. So I will give the deck a borderectomy (I have grown to dislike borders on my Tarot cards) and that should make shuffling the cards easier. Oh and I would love it if Ellen created a longer, more detailed companion book but I digress.

So, to wrap it all up – do I recommend this deck? It depends. If you find yourself drawn to ancient cultures I think you will find much in this deck to feed your interests. If you are interested in learning a bit about an ancient culture that was less aggressive and misogynistic but no less cultured and civilized than Mycenaean Greece, this deck will intrigue you. If you seek decks that challenge you to expand your horizons and explore new perspectives and meanings for the cards, this deck will enthrall you. If you want to support privately printed, small batch published decks then this will fit your bill.

I will admit that prior to actually seeing this deck I was on the fence about acquiring it. The likelihood is that I would have purchased it to support Ellen if for no other reason. Now that I’ve played with it a bit and explored it energies I am eager to give it a longer test run and see where it takes me. The artwork is lovely and calls to something within me I wasn’t even aware existed. It tantalizes me like sunlight sparkling across a still lake. It shimmers and dazzles but in a quiet, understated manner like a classic beauty who is at first overshadowed her her more showy, extroverted sisters but whose true value is soon acknowledge and honored.

So if you haven’t already done so, get your copy of the delightfully delicious Minoan Tarot here

And if you’re still up in the air about purchasing a copy, you can read additional reviews here