Tarot--the highly-symbolic set of cards that serves divination, meditation, pathworking, inspiration, creativity and illumination--is a "fringe" practice that, to some extent, is becoming more mainstream...just like Paganism in all it's diverse, vibrant expressions.
And because both expressions are "fringe" (meaning we tend to be objects of ridicule, exclusion and/or marginalization), we need to support one another.
Years ago, when I was much younger, I read Rita Mae Brown's Ruby Fruit Jungle, where I first learned the tern "polymorphous perverse." At the time, I thought it was a term created by the author to describe her emergent sexuality, and I always thought perhaps the term applied to me as a polyamorous, bi, pagan female. It wasn't until years later that I learned the term was actually coined by Freud to denote people who are able to find sexual gratification outside of accepted societal norms. I was elated to learn that the term could still apply to me, which is why I've decided to use it to name the oracle deck I've been creating.
(By the way, I was gone for awhile. Did you miss me? I've had my head buried in projects like these! I'm back to tell you all about them).
With on-demand publishing leveling the playing field for deck creators, we are now in a Golden Age of Tarot. No longer must authors, artists and visionaries submit their work to Tarot’s Old Guard, hoping and praying that their unusual deck will past muster and snag them a publishing contract. (If it’s any consolation, many decks don’t get an advance—and sole creators earn about $1-$2 per deck…less, if split with collaborators).
Purists would argue that anybody with crayons, paper and a scanner could conceivable publish a Tarot deck—and that the glut of decks now available dilutes the sacred tradition of the Holy 78.
Affirmations are a wonderful compliment to gratitude practice, and help steer your emotions, thought processes and life in the direction you want to go. Coupling them with the symbolic images of Tarot makes them even more powerful.
You don't have to be an tarot expert to realize that numerology is very strong in both the major and the minor arcana. All the cards are numbered—and every tarot card resonates along with the number that is ascribed to it. Every number has its own frequency, its own vibration. Just ask a musician about the notes and timing of the score.
The major arcana is numbered 0 - 21, and of course 0 is just a placeholder. It's a pause, the place where anything is possible. It's the potential of an idea before that idea comes to mind.
Finding a deck that really connected with my personal energy became a daunting task. There were very few that allowed me to see myself in them, being a fat/black/queer woman. Dust II Onyx Tarot was created from my desire to make artwork that resonated with my soul, and now has become a work I want to share with others. I set out to create my own deck, and after months of not having a vision for what it’d look like a dream came to me. Then it came to me again. In the dream was an intensely gorgeous black portrait which has become the inspiration behind this deck. I began the work using my current knowledge of tarot and mostly my own intuition. The imagery that comes forth is as new to me as it is for the readers who will use this deck. It is coming from a place that is far beyond my conscious mind. -- Courtney Alexander, creator of the Dust II Onyx Melanated Tarot Deck
Although some would argue that this deck is for "people of color", I would maintain that it's a deck for everyone--especially those who see the world through universal archetypes, symbols and shared human experience.