Alchemical Thoughts

Posts Tagged ‘#31DaysofTarot

Day 5: The card that stalked you in 2019.

I did not feel I had a major stalker card in 2019, though it seemed some of the pages seem to appear a bit at the end of the year. So I took a look back at my Tarot journals to see what cards came out more often every week. My top stalkers were:

  • The Magician- I.
  • The Queen of Pentacles.
  • Tied for third place: The Hierophant- V, The Moon- XVIII, The Wheel of Fortune, and the King of Swords.

 

Day 6: The deck you finally crossed off your list in 2018.

I was fortunate enough to have crossed off a few Tarot and oracle decks off my wish list in 2018. The top one I’d say was the Tarot Apokalypsis. This was not a deck I expected to get anytime soon, and when I found a good deal on it, I went ahead and got it. Others I managed to cross out of the wish list for 2018:

 

Day 7: Most worked deck in 2018 and why.

Turns out the Santa Muerte Tarot was the deck I worked with most in 2018. I used it from January to part of April, then during May. I used it again in December and part of January 2019 to complete the 2018 Tarot Review series. At the beginning of the year, I was using it in part because I wanted to write a review of it. The review is not written yet. However, it is a deck I enjoy using overall because for me it has a certain quirky sense of humor. It often makes me laugh. By now, it is a deck I am pretty comfortable using.

Other decks I worked with in 2018:

  • Gaian Tarot. This is another favorite of mine, and I find it is a good one to use during summer months. Used it during June and part of July.
  • Witches Tarot: This is another deck that I am really enjoying and feeling comfortable using. I used it for the rest of July and into September. I used it again in December for my daily card draws.
  • Vampires Tarot of the Eternal Night. This has been so far my deck for the Halloween season and to transition into fall season. I used it from the end of September into the first week of December. It seems it has gone out of print recently, so I will be doing my best to keep it in good condition. Next Halloween I may bring out a different deck. I’ll decide when I get to October.
  • Steampunk Tarot. Used it for one week in November. I thought I was going to keep using it during winter but I went back to the Witches Tarot.

 

Day 8: Top 5 decks on your wish list right now.

I have quite a few decks on my wish list at the moment. However, I am pretty happy with my collection right now, so I do not feel any urgent need to add more decks. I may add one here or there if a good deal and/or opportunity appears, but otherwise there is no rush. The one thing I do want to do is get some second copies of favorite decks so I can have a backup, but again, that is something I can do gradually. Having said that, if you press me, at this moment these would be the top decks on the wish list:

  • Tarot Illuminati. This is mainly to go with the Tarot Apokalypsis I recently acquired.
  • Tarot of the Cat People. If possible, I want to get the kit with the book.
  • Erotic Tarot of Manara.
  • Whispers of Lord Ganesha oracle deck.
  • Gods and Titans and Goddesses and Sirens oracle decks. I am counting these two as one because I would like to get them together. Amazon often has them, but they are made by some U.S. publisher (they must have gotten U.S. rights or something) and reviews all claim quality is inferior. Other option may be trying to get them directly from Blue Angel, but that is in Australia and shipping it here may be prohibitive. So this is likely to stay on the wish list for a good long while. I do really want these as they spark my interest in classic mythology, something I also grew up with.

 

 

You can find Ethony Dawn’s prompts, including a video explaining the prompts, over on her blog. The social media hashtag for this one is #31DaysOfTarot19.

Today we have some short list prompts, so I am doing them together.

Day 2: Top 5 Tarot decks of 2018 (ones you purchased or released in 2018):

I was fortunate to be able to get a few new Tarot decks for my use and collection in 2019, so narrowing the list to the top 5 was not easy. I have not gotten around to reviewing them yet, but I hope to do so in 2019. The decks listed are pretty much new to me. My top 5 Tarot decks for 2018 then (in no particular order. Links to Aeclectic unless noted otherwise):

  • Black Cats Tarot: This was on my wish list, and I always wanted at least one cat-themed Tarot deck. It has a nice playfulness that I like. The Better Half saw it and liked it too, so I’ll probably buy her a copy of her own soon.
  • Tarot Apokalypsis: This and the Tarot Illuminati have been in my wish list for a while, but they were relatively low priority. However, the local esoteric bookstore I visit once in a while in the big city was having a serious sale on some older decks, and Tarot Apokalypsis, the full hardcover book and deck kit, was on sale for about $17 or so (it retails for about $38), so it was a deal I could not pass up. I grabbed it the moment I saw it.
  • Thelema Tarot, and the Arcanum Tarot (link to Amazon), by Renata Lechner. The Thelema was part of that same sale I mentioned above, and I got the Arcanum Tarot a bit later in the year. They are by the same author, so I am counting them as one. Lechner has her version of a Thoth deck, the Millennium Thoth Tarot (link to Llewellyn), which I am hoping to acquire down the road. As of this post, that one is on pre-order.
  • The Necronomicon Tarot: Another one that was on my wish list for a good while. Amazingly, Half Price Books had a used copy of the set, book and deck, in good condition and at a good price, so I finally got this. I am looking forward to re-reading H.P. Lovecraft’s tales as well as Donald Tyson’s books related to the deck as I get to work with the deck.
  • Ludy Lescot Tarot: I bought this, which was also on my wish list, when Llewellyn had their annual decks’ sale. Great art on this one.

Day 3: Top 5 Oracle decks of 2018 (ones you purchased or released in 2018):

This was also a good year for oracle decks for me. My top 5 for 2018 are (again, no particular order):

  • Santa Muerte Oracle (link to Llewellyn): This was new for 2018. I pre-ordered this one. I already have the Santa Muerte Tarot, so I knew I had to add this companion oracle deck to my collection. It has the same style as the Tarot deck but there are also some key differences that will make it interesting to work with this deck.
  • Divine Circus Oracle: Another on my wish list I managed to get in 2018.
  • Mystical Shaman Oracle: A recent deck by Collette Baron-Reid in collaboration with Alberto Villoldo and Marcela Lobos. Usually retails for about $40, but Amazon during the holidays had it on sale for a bit under $20, so I grabbed it while the grabbing was good. The book and deck kit comes in a very good box, and presentation overall is excellent. Art on the cards is very good too. This is one I know I will have to put in some good time to work with it.
  • Fairy Lenormand Oracle: Learning Lenormand was not high on my priority list. I knew I wanted to learn it some day but not soon. Then I saw this deck, which is by Davide Corsi, author of the Vampires Tarot of the Eternal Night (link to my review of that Tarot deck), in collaboration with Marcus Katz and Tali Goodwin, and I said to myself now is the time. I even subscribed to a small free set of e-mail lessons on Lenormand and got myself a good book on the topic to start learning.
  • Gilded Reverie Lenormand (link to Amazon): This is Ciro Marchetti’s Lenormand deck. I’ve enjoyed some of his other decks, so I felt it was a natural thing to get his Lenormand deck. I already had one, why not one more? If you like Ciro’s art style and Lenormand interests you, this may be for you too. I have the more recent expanded edition, which has 8 more cards in addition to the traditional 36; you can use or remove them from use as you wish.

 

Day 4: Top 5 Tarot books of 2018 (ones you purchased and/or were released in 2018).

I did not read too many Tarot and/or esoterica/occult books in 2018, so five is a good number as it is about the amount of books in this category I read. Links go to my reviews (unless noted otherwise):

 

 

You can find Ethony Dawn’s prompts, including a video explaining the prompts, over on her blog. The social media hashtag for this one is #31DaysOfTarot19.

I did Ethony Dawn’s “31 Days of Tarot” challenge in January of 2018 (find my posts for it here), so I decided to try it again for a second year. For Ethony, this is the fourth year people have been doing it, mainly on YouTube. As I have mentioned elsewhere on this blog, I do not use YouTube, so I do the prompts here on the blog. This year I am running a bit behind because I fell behind on the other Tarot blogging challenge I just completed, the 2018 Tarot Review created by Lisa Frideborg (you can find my posts for that one here). Anyhow, a nice thing about Ethony’s challenge is that the prompts do lend themselves to be combined, so I hope that helps me catch up. Let’s get started.

The first prompt is a two cards reading: Energy and Major Lesson. I am drawing two cards for a personal reading for 2019 to see what the energy for 2019 looks like for me and any major lesson the new year brings. For this reading I am using Ellen Dugan’s Witches Tarot.

Two Tarot cards: Three of Pentacles and Four of Wands from the Witches Tarot

Three of Pentacles and Four of Wands from the Witches Tarot

 

On energy: Three of Pentacles. Energy is going to be on focus, work, concentration, attention to detail. Take time to focus on your craft. Focus your energy on disciplined study: read, research, reflect, write, explore. I’d say a good time to refine skills and/or work on acquiring new skills. Putting energy on learning will be a good investment for 2019.

On major lesson: Four of Wands. Remember to take the time to celebrate the good and work well done. Once in a while, getting together with others is a good thing. Do your best not to be too isolated.

 

You can find Ethony Dawn’s prompts, including a video explaining the prompts, over on her blog. The social media hashtag for this one is #31DaysOfTarot19.

With these four prompts, I get to wrap up the challenge. This is the first time I have attempted this kind of blogging challenge, a challenge where you do prompts over a month, and doing it around Tarot has been interesting as well as helped me reflect a bit on my Tarot learning journey. Doing them ahead of time too has been helpful given my schedule is not always one that allows me to do this on every single day. So, here we go with the last four prompts:

Day 28: Share one celebrity that you would refuse to read for, no matter how much they paid you (and why!).

Day 29: What are your beliefs around the mechanics of a reading? How do you think it works? Is it your subconscious, higher self, Spirit?

Day 30: What is the most culturally inclusive deck that you own?

Day 31: What are your favorite Tarot apps, do you work with them? On what platforms smart phone, tablet, etc.?

 

Day 28. Definitely the Pendejo In Chief. He is known for not listening to anything you try to tell him anyhow, so why bother? He does not have enough money to get a reading from me. He is way too stubborn and self-centered for anyone to try to tell him anything. And the same goes for anyone who voted for him or supported him or continues to support him. I definitely do not want any of those people anywhere near me, and if I know they are one of them, I will not read for them. I am sure they can find a reader; it just will not be me.

 

Day 29. I am not sure on the beliefs about readings. I am pretty much a heathen, though I would not totally see myself as full atheist. I am somewhat spiritual and still seeking kind of thing. I think readings and readers can vary from people who are very spiritual and guided by some higher power (whatever you wish to call it) to those who do it by the book to folks who know the symbols and combine it with a cold reading ability. Allow me to add that I do not think having the ability to cold read is necessarily a bad thing. I think, if you pin me down, an ideal reading combines intuition, a little spirituality, some cold reading, and a little book learning. In other words, it is not just one thing, but a combination of factors that make a reading. These factors vary from reader to reader, and depending on how each reader combines them in a variety of ways is how you see if a reading is good or not. For me, this can account as to the wide variety of readers and how they read. After all, you can put a spread out, and if you have five or more readers, they may all give you a different reading of the same cards. That I do find interesting.

 

Day 30. I have two decks that I see as culturally inclusive at this moment: the Gaian Tarot (Colbert) and the Modern Spellcaster’s Tarot (Marquis). Deck links here go to my reviews of the decks.

 

Day 31. I do not really work with Tarot and oracle card apps. I have some Tarot sampler apps on my smart phone that I got to try out, from Fool’s Dog, but otherwise, I do not have any specific apps I use. I prefer to use cards in print. However, I like the idea that in a pinch I can do Tarot on my phone when I do not have a deck handy.

 

You can find Ethony’s original prompts here.

Combining days once more into a single post. I find that this works for me better than making a bunch of very short posts. Anyhow, here are the prompts for these three days:

Day 25: Tarot or oracle– which one would you read with for the rest of your life, if you had to pick one? And why?

Day 26: Thoughts on Tarot become “mainstream”?

Day 27: Share your first professional reading experience (either as a reader or seeker).

If I am forced to choose, it would be Tarot what I would read with for the rest of my life. I think it is because of the structure. Tarot has a specific set of symbols, structure, and arrangement. For the most part, a Tarot deck is a Tarot deck no matter which deck you pick up. As much as I like oracle cards, each deck is its own world. In the end, I am glad that I do not have to make this choice.

I do not have any substantial thoughts on Tarot becoming mainstream. If anything, I like the idea that it is becoming more accessible to the hoi polloi like me. It is nice to see that it is not just something for the select few in some far off cabal or something old ladies do from their homes in the other side of the tracks. I am not a fan personally of exclusivity and exclusionary practices, so this is a nice development in my humble opinion. Learning it also appeals to the librarian in me who enjoys reading and learning new things. If nothing else, I hope that as it gets more mainstream, the stigmas that were attached to it gradually fade away. Having Tarot and oracle decks can be as common as having a deck of regular playing cards; that would be a nice vision I think.

I need to note I have never had a professional reading experience neither as reader nor seeker. I would love to have a professional do one for me some day, but I have not found anyone I feel I can approach at this point. As for me, I sure as heck am not ready to do professional readings. Would I do it some day? Maybe. I think I would rather do it here and there for friends and put a tip jar out. At least for now.

You can find Ethony’s original prompts here.

Once more I am combining prompts these are going to be short answers for me. The prompts are mainly designed for those who make and upload videos, but in writing, these are short answer items, well, to me at least. The prompts are:

Day 22: Share the card that was the hardest for you to “get” when you were first learning the Tarot. How do you feel about the card now?

Day 23: Share a Tarot deck that you just had to “break up” with (it no longer resonates with you).

Day 24: If you could design a 79th Tarot card that everyone would use– what would it look like? What would it represent?

 

Day 22. I would say I struggled a bit with the court cards, especially the pages as I started out in my Tarot journey. I am not the most sociable person, so relating the court cards to people in my life was not easy, and some Tarot advice sources said that was the way to go. Once I figured out that they could also represent traits in me, or traits in others around me, rather than literal persons, I was able to relate to the cards a bit better. Jane Lyle’s The Illustrated Guide to Tarot (link to my review), a simple book I keep handy for basic Tarot reference, also gives “abstract” meanings for the court cards, and I have found those to be helpful for me in interpreting those cards.

Day 23: I have mentioned this before, but this would be The Hobbit Tarot. This is not a matter of breaking up after the fact. This was more of a bad marriage that should have never happened, and I am annulling it as soon as possible. This was one of two decks I have bought in my life without researching the images beforehand. I got it because I like The Hobbit book and also because at the time at the store the price was obscenely cheap. However, there is my lesson not to be lured to a deck by an obscenely cheap price. Sometimes, well, you get what you pay for, and in this case it was seriously bad. As I said previously, what the hell U.S. Games was smoking when they allowed this thing to be published is beyond me. The art is not too bad (I have seen worse), but it has nothing whatsoever to do with Tarot. It is one of those decks they took some theme art and rammed it into Tarot, and the results here are just plain awful. As far as I am concerned, this deck needs to suffer the same fate as the old E.T. Atari cartridges. Rest assured I will never, ever buy a deck without looking up the images online someplace beforehand.

Day 24: This is easy. I am just doing a blank card you can draw on. Make it what you want it to be.

 

You can find all the other prompts here.

 

Today’s prompt: Share some of your favorite deck storage!

I do not have any fancy ways of storing my decks. When I can, I leave them in the boxes they came in. If the deck has a good sturdy

Deck boxes for Santa Muerte Tarot and Wisdom of the Oracle Divination Cards

These are two decks that came in nice boxes. I wish more decks came like this in small sturdy boxed that are durable and you can carry around. On a side note, I recently got the Wild Unknown Tarot. That package came in a nice big box with the deck in its own sturdy box you can carry. That is good packaging right there.

box, I keep it in there. Why mess with a good thing I say. For a few decks that either did not have a box when I got them or came in flimsy boxes that will get tossed out for not being durable, I try to put the decks in some kind of bag of pouch. I have no ability to knit or sew, so I get bags and pouches where I can, and since I live on a librarian salary, I try to spend little on acquiring them. For instance, I go to places like Target (their dollar spot) or Michael’s and buy small bags and pouches for gifts that may hold a deck when they go on sale.

As for shelving, I do have a dedicated shelf for them in my closet in my home office/workstation, but that is starting to get to overflow a bit, mainly because many decks come in those big unwieldy boxes. The nicer boxes will stay, but the cheap thin cardboard ones will likely go as soon as I find a bag for the deck, and I then cut the box up for art to put in my Tarot journal.

Overall, deck storage is definitely an ongoing work in progress, and I am only getting started. Stay tuned.

Sample card deck bags

Some of the deck bags I use to store card decks. The one shaped like a fish came from Target’s Dollar Spot. I had bought it to store my Oceanic Tarot, but now it has my Unicorn Tarot, which I acquired used and did not come with a box or bag. The other three bags came from Michael’s after Christmas sale. I bought a bunch of these, so I have more waiting to be used. The decks inside are my Steampunk (Moore and Fell), the New Century Tarot (another one that I got used. It came with a book, but no bag or pouch), and my basic Marseilles. Overall, I am on a tight budget, so cheap is how I often go. If it works, it works.

 

You can find Ethony’s original prompts here.


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