So last month I acquired a set of Karen Mahony's Alice Tarot. Having done about 20 readings with it, I have to say that I'm very impressed with it.
The cards are of high quality, and have a bit of a metallic sheen to them to add interest and depth. I like slightly large cards, and these accommodate that. The backs are the same dignified or inverted. What I like most about them, though, is that this is MY Alice.
When I was a child I adored Alice in Wonderland. It was my story: Alice in Virgoland. I always had to eat that, drink this, do too much, be too curious, and I was never backwards about telling adults exactly what I thought. I won't say it did me any favors, but I certainly resonated with Alice! I had my images of what the characters in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass were like (and I was terribly disappointed in Disney's version). So when I saw another reader post a layout with the Alice cards, and Alice looked like my Alice, I had to take a closer look.
I was not disappointed. The cards are great representations of the characters in the story, and they tell that story remarkably well. It's lovely to be able to do readings with them, and narrate a story. "Your adventure in Wonderland starts with... along the way you are accompanied by... then this happens, which brings you that... and your journey concludes like this." The people for whom I've done the readings were all very delighted with the new twist, too.
If you'd like to check the cards out for yourself, they are available from Baba Studios. For more information, here is a link to a recent article written about them, and their creators.
So, remember a few weeks ago when I started using the Tarot to give me a hint on what my body might need from me in the upcoming day? That has actually proved to be quite an interesting exercise (if you will pardon the pun). Not only am I finding that the cards give me clues as to what to expect, but I've actually started to broaden this to different aspects of chores around the house.
Is it crazy to 'predict' what to do? Well, yes. Tarot--like astrology or any other oracle--can give us insights, but it doesn't control us. However, I have found on days when I draw a high energy card, I do tend to get a lot more done in the house as far as mundane chores go, than if I drew something more relaxed.
Just to shift things around a bit, I started drawing the card in the evening, to see if it provided a summary of the daily events. Yes, it's possible to make things fit, but the synchronicity was just too interesting to write everything off as coincidence.
Has anyone else tried this since I first blogged about it? What were your findings? Did the card help to guide you to staying more physically fit? I'd be very interested to know if it has worked for anyone else, or if it's just some oddball quirk of my eccentric life!
Okay, well, maybe it is not particularly high-tech to some of you, but for an old crone like me who seems to have an aversion to modern electronics, it seems that way. I don't pay for my apps, I hardly know how to use my smartphone, but this is something that I discovered awhile ago, and now would not be without.
Yes, I still like the feel of the cards and yes, I still adore my Tarot of the Cloisters deck, but with the Galaxy Tarot app on my phone, if I have my phone, I have my Tarot. What's more, I can do readings, and email the screenshot right to my client. I can share specific cards, I can add my own notes, I can refer to the different aspects of the symbolism or different correlations; in short, there's not a lot I can't do with this.
I'm not one to go all gaga over an app, but this one--along with the sister app, Galaxy Runes -- are the only two for which I've actually paid. At $4 a throw they're excellent value for money.
Whether you're a novice just learning or an old hand at reading the cards, this is a most excellent app. There is a free version that, even with its limited resources, seems to have a lot to offer. Ten minutes with the free version convinced me I needed the pro. I think Galaxy Software has done an excellent job with it.
My friend and I were talking about fitness the other day. She's been wearing a 'FitBit,' and another friend of mine has been wearing Nike FuelBand. I was contemplating investing in such a gizmo, as I'll be the first to admit I could take better care of myself than I do. These things are neat little gadgets and I'm sure they work for tracking, motivation, and encouragement . Mulling it over before sleep that night though, I started thinking about the tools that I already have. I've got a food tracker on my smartphone, I've got a pedometer, and I've got my Tarot.
"How on Earth does the Tarot fit in with a keep fit plan," you might well ask? Before you chalk me up to being completely crazy (as opposed to just the 'way-out-there-crazy-but still-functional' type of crazy that I'll readily admit to being), hear me out. I thought I might be off my rocker, but I've played around with this for a few days now, and I've been very surprised by how well it works.
While doing my morning meditations with the Tarot, I've started pulling a card as a 'living well' theme for the day. Sometimes it's a bit vague, and I put that down to me only starting to work with the cards in this manner. Sometimes it's uncannily appropriate. For example, yesterday I was thinking about starting to use my little set of kettle bells again, and I pulled the card, the Ten of Wands. Now, when I do Tarot readings, this card always makes me think of carrying burdens or there being too much weight on someone's shoulders. It stands to reason then that this was confirming that the kettle bells might be a good choice for that morning.
Another 'test' run came when I had been thinking about starting to walk more. The card that day was the Eight of Cups. When I am doing a reading, to me this card indicates it's time to walk away from what is not working. It seemed to have a twofold meaning in this instance, because it was at the start of my new determination to take better care of myself, so I would be walking away from old habits. It also affirmed that walking was probably a good idea.
A third instance was, rather than doing something particularly physical one day, I thought I'd do a bit of 'Rhythm Kung Fu' using the Wii Fit (go on, you can laugh), and I drew the Hermit. To me, this is a card of introspection, and meditation, of doing something contemplative as opposed to blatantly active.
I started wondering what else the cards could teach me. Could the Justice card indicate that it is a day for working with balance exercises; would the cards in the suit of Cups advocate a water activity (not that there is a swimming pool near here, but it might work for some)? Might the Eight of Pentacles tell me to work harder towards my goals, or perhaps the Judgement card emerge when it was time to weigh and measure? This is all 'food' for thought, if you'll pardon the pun. I'm going to keep working with it. I may decide that it's not worth it and that the few successes that I have had are just a fluke, but I'm not ready to completely throw it out yet. I use the Tarot for nearly everything else; so I'm going to persevere awhile longer, and see if it works for this, too. Watch this space -- I'll keep you updated.
Often when we think about the Empress card, we think of things pertaining to the springtime and fertility. The Empress can inspire fertility year round, though, through creativity. She is a very potent symbol of abundance and plenty.
When I'm stuck for inspiration, I call upon Empress energy. This season, she's been working with me to help me very creatively make seasonal gifts for friends and family. That's the thing I've found with Empress energy; it works best when the creativity is infused with love.
Are you in need of a bit of inspiration, a bit of creative energy or some new ideas? Call upon the Empress to assist you in your endeavors. There are many ways that this can be done. If you keep an altar or a place of meditation, put an image of the Empress from a favorite Tarot deck there, where you can see it often and remember to focus on the task in hand. Perhaps you would prefer to put the image as a wallpaper to a computer monitor, tablet, or smartphone. Small tiles can be worn as jewelry, or a photo of the card carried in a wallet or purse.
The main thing when working with this energy is to have a goal, but let the path to that goal meander a bit. I've found that some of my most creative ideas have developed when I thought I was going to be making something else! For me, this seems to apply to all aspects of creativity, too; pottery, knitting, writing, whatever.
This season, try inviting the archetypal Empress to assist you with your creative projects, whatever they may be. After all, as a symbol of caring and nurturing, her energy can go a long way into turning a pursuit into a pleasure, and a token into a treasure, yes? Here's hoping everyone has a festive holiday season, however they choose to celebrate.
The holidays are just around the corner, and while I was surfing I came across these wonderful Tarot Tile pendants made by Gaea (http://gaea.cc/gaea_tarot.html) I particularly liked the 'blue moon' in teal.
Being a potter myself, these have given me some inspiration, not so much for making the Tarot tile pendants, but for doing a line of Tarot inspired plaques and masks. The runes are talking to me fairly loudly at the moment, too. I feel some sculpting approaching...
Gaea also does a nice line in 'Day of the Dead' items, goddesses, and she does made to order work, too. Small business Saturday and the holidays are rapidly approaching, maybe this will give the savvy shopper some ideas as to what to get their Tarot pals for the festive season this year!