Monday, 13 January 2014

Bonding With A New Tarot Deck

Merry meet one and all.

I was asked recently about working with new decks, and realised that this is something that maybe holds a certain mystique.  For years I worked with just the one deck, but in recent years I have expanded my collection to include different tarot decks and oracle cards.  The deck I use most often is the Old English tarot; I have worked with it for almost fifteen years and I know it intimately.  Tarot is a pictorial language, and my trusty deck speaks in a way I easily and quickly understand; I sometimes liken this to the shorthand slang that best friends often develop. However, a few years ago I began to wonder if I was missing out by only working with the one deck.   Yes it was familiar and I was able to get the messages quickly, but was that part of the problem?  Was I only getting part of the information, like trying to build a sentence with only verbs?  So I got a new deck.

At this point I ought to point out that actually my mum bought me a new deck first, Brian Froud's Faeries' Oracle, and though I was a huge fan of Froud's artwork, I couldn't quite get to grips with the cards, so I tried a different tack and rather than getting a tarot deck I bought myself an Oracle deck.  The deck I chose was the Enchanted Map, and right from the moment I opened the box I knew I'd made the right decision; the images were beautiful, the energy was strong, and I was using them in readings right from the word go.

Then in 2012 I had to move to the USA for my husband's career, and my spirituality took a real knock.  For almost a year I didn't perform rituals, I didn't read the tarot, nothing.  Then, with the help of a light worker I'd become friends with, I started to get my groove back, and the first thing I did was start reconnecting with my decks. Now here I have a confession; in the chaos of the military moving us, my Faerie oracle deck got put in the wrong box and is currently in storage. However I am a firm believer in things happening for a reason and I honestly believe they didn't come with me because the time isn't quite right for us to work together; instead they are waiting for me to come home and rediscover them, and then we will have an adventure together.

However, this meant I was working with two, albeit very different, decks.  So I asked the Universe to guide me, and sure enough I was scanning the bookshelves in my local bookstore and found the Wildwood tarot.  This has quite a different mythology to a standard tarot deck, so most of the cards are different and have unique messages to pass on.  Despite being familiar with many of the characters portrayed, I still lacked confidence actually using them for readings, so I thought I'd try a different deck, and instead went for the rather expensive, limited edition and incredibly powerful Tyldwick tarot.  The interesting thing about this deck is there are no people in it; for example the Devil card is a mirror hanging on the wall, reflecting your demons back at you.  See, I told you it was powerful!  Yet again, however, I lacked the confidence to work with it professionally.

Then one day, a witch friend of mine, Lyn Thurman, started using the Wildwood tarot for her card of the day, and I fell in love all over again.  That motivated me to get them out of their box and play with them.  I read the accompanying book to familiarise myself with the intended messages, then went back to basics by selecting a card and seeing how I interpreted the picture.  You see the key with any form of divination, be it tarot, tealeaves or dreams, is to understand what the symbols mean to you.  Not the author of the book; you. They are my cards, and they want to work with me; it is down to us to figure out a way to communicate with each other, and it is that bond that enables me to read for clients.

Today I did my first reading using cards from the Tyldwick tarot, and it felt great.  Honestly, the cards almost breathed a sigh of relief that they were finally being used and embraced rather than feared. I can't believe it has taken me, with my nineteen years of reading the tarot, this long to embrace the new energies of a different deck, but now I've started there's no stopping me.  As I add to my collection and my range of experiences grows, I'll let you know how I get on.

With love and light,

WitchHazel