I broke down and did what I said I’d do in a post yesterday — I ordered the Gaian Tarot major arcana deck with the last of my Christmas money. This second edition of the deck was first available in January 2005 so the deck itself has been around for a few years. The first edition is described by Bonnie Cehoyet in her review of the deck on the marvelous Aeclectic Tarot site. The cards in that edition were a little larger than the ones in the second edition and they came with a purple velvet bag (*sigh*).
I have a number of card decks, some tarot and some not. I don’t feel an extraordinary affinity with most tarot decks, especially the classic ones. I prefer non-tarot decks, especially ones with artwork that resonates with me. I received my first two card decks as Christmas gifts the same year back in, oh, 1982-ish or thereabouts. One of them was a classic Rider-Waite-ish tarot deck (can’t remember what it was called — don’t believe it was an actual Rider-Waite deck — and can’t find it right now). The other was the Tarot of the Witches. It is best known for having been used by Jane Seymour in the James Bond film “Live and Let Die”. It’s an odd-looking deck but very colourful. I used to let people pick which deck they wanted to use.
Since then, I’ve bought a number of decks, some I ended up not liking — not disliking, just not really “feeling”. I don’t believe that bunk that some people try to tell you, that you can’t buy your own deck. Poppycock! The decks I’ve been most attuned to have been decks I’ve bought myself. Some favourites (besides the Luman deck I mentioned yesterday and the Gaian deck I just bought) include:
The Fortune Teller’s Mah Jongg — A 144-card oracle deck. These are very small cards but the artwork on them is soothing and beautiful. These are probably my favourite cards. My only problem with them is the colour of the backs of the cards. The backs are a vivid, almost pulsingly bright shade of red that makes me a little nauseous (you can see the backs of the cards on the FengShuiShopper site — it doesn’t quite do the colour justice but it’s close). Pictures of all of the cards (though not quite as nice looking scanned as they are in person) are here.
Druid Animal Oracle — A 33-card oracle deck of fairly large cards. Comes with a special layout cloth. I love the artwork on these cards as well. They have a decidedly UK/Celtic feel to them, which is nice.
Caroline Myss’s Archetype Cards — Well, Caroline Myss is just one of my favourite people anyway. I can remember watching one of her seminars with my meditation group back in late 1997/early 1998. I ended up buying her “Anatomy of the Spirit” book at the time. The 80 cards in this deck accompany her “Sacred Contracts” book. If you’re at all interested in Caroline Myss’s work, you can download podcasts of her radio show, in which she discusses the various archetypes, from Hay House.
I have other cards — I’ll have to find them to list them. But those are my favourite ones. There are others I’d love to have including the Celtic Dragon Tarot and the Celtic Tree Oracle (someone brought that one into work many years ago (late 80s or early 90s) and I fell in love with the artwork on them). Oooh, that last one used to be long out of print but I see it’s now available on Amazon.com. Hmmm…