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02 October 2012

tarot, and the 78 days project: 1/78

I've been thinking about how to introduce my new tarot deck - when it gets here - to my existing oracle deck. I don't want there to be any tension between the two.

I don't think of my oracle deck as being so petty; I do think of myself potentially having some internal concerns over becoming unbalanced in my connections to the two decks (my existing connection with my oracle cards, and the connection I hope to develop with my new tarot cards).

I ordered this deck, by the way. It should be here today.

While looking for that picture, I found this review. I'm glad I read it - I feel like I have a better grasp on what I'm going to use this deck for. Of course that could change when it actually gets here, but at least I have a stronger starting point now.

The differences in the purposes of the decks (determined largely by their respective 'personalities') will guide me in their use. My oracle cards almost always speak more to the hidden aspects of the querent's personality  (or sometimes, not-so-hidden) which are relevant to the question, thus guiding almost entire from the inside of the person's psyche in a way which seeks balance in all things. I get the impression the incoming tarot deck might be less subtle.

UPS can't get here soon enough!

Going back to my original concerns - introducing the new deck to the old deck - I think I'd like to do a little rephrasing. I'm no longer so concerned with potential tension between the two decks. I think that was probably some pretty intense projection on my part. However, each new strongly energetic item that enters my home must figure out - or be taught - to live harmoniously with the other energies of my home. Discontent is not tolerable. But... I don't know whether this deck will show up full of its own energy, or void, waiting to be developed. My oracle deck had its own, but it was distant or perhaps immature. That might also have been merely emblematic of our lack of connection, which had yet to be built.

So, we'll see when it gets here, and take it from there because I'm unable to draw conclusions without more information.


What brought this on:

I've been eyeballing the steampunk tarot deck for quite some time, and I'm not entirely sure why.

I love the aesthetic of the steampunk style - which was what first drew my eye to the genre - and as I learn more about the ideas inherent in the style, I've become enamored of the entirety. I've never had the money to get involved, though. Having a child does terrible things to budgets of time, money, and energy.

I have been growing more curious about learning tarot. Always before, tarot has been somewhat intimidating to me. There are so many cards, and layers of meaning which vary by the type of card (major arcana, minor... etc) - it just seemed like a lot. That's changed, gradually, since I've been thinking about how I read the cards. I'm finding the idea of learning tarot less intimidating, and more approachable. But I still didn't have a deck, and as much as I liked the steampunk deck's aesthetic, I still didn't buy it.

I've been shopping around, testing the feel of many decks in my mind. None felt right. They felt alien, and I didn't know if that were just the unfamiliarity, or if it was a sign of incompatibility. And, though perhaps this is a sign of superficiality, I wanted a deck that was different. None of the themes I was seeing really spoke to me. Of course I've heard the 'accepted wisdom' that every tarot reader should have - or begin, even - with one of the traditional decks. Accepted wisdom doesn't interest me much. I kept coming back to the steampunk deck. I felt drawn to it, despite never really being involved in the steampunk scene.

Yesterday, I read a post on the Dusken Path about her plan to blog through 78 days of tarot. I guess that was all the kick I really needed. I bought the deck. It's on its way.

I'm excited.

The Steampunk Tarot deck just arrived! Skimming through the accompanying book, I saw "Tarot reflects our current struggles and concerns as a culture." I was wrong. As I flipped back to the page where I thought I saw that, I discovered the actual text: "Steampunk, and any genre or subculture, reflects our current struggles and concerns as a culture." Hmmmm... thanks for the tip, Freud. That little discovery led to this little epiphany: a deck should reflect a certain outlook on the world of the reader which is useful or relevant to that reader. Steampunk, in my eyes, is a microcosmic representation of the anticipation we all have for better things to come, and the hope that we won't lose the best parts of our histories. This deck, at first feel, captures that energy. It's a very happy deck. In hindsight, I realize I was a bit worried it might be somewhat dark, and thus not be a good companion for me. I'm quite happy with the outcome.

I'll keep this new deck by my side for the first few weeks, as I did (and sometimes continue to do) with my oracle deck. I find that this practice helps with the 'getting to know you' phase of new divination tools.

As I believe is common, the first card I saw - before I even removed the cellophane wrapper - was The Fool. He's a youth with a small white dog, reminiscent of Tin-Tin, but that he's carrying a chimney sweep's tool and standing on a roof. He gives the feel of ease and simplicity in life, and the happiness which can come alongside those qualities. Did I not know how difficult a life with no things can be, I would envy him greatly. Except, that this deck does not evoke so unhappy an emotion. There's a certain delicate wisdom which is lost along with our innocence; this Fool retains that wisdom, evokes it. I don't think that's something to be sad about.

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