Tarot Tuesday – Some of My Tarot Decks

tarot, tarot reader, tarot cards, fortune telling, fortune teller,I had planned to talk about the Major Arcana today, but some unexpected family-related business suddenly reared its hoary head and, so, I’ll have to postpone my discussion of the Major Arcana until a later post.

But, for Tarot Tuesday, I thought I’d share a peek at some of the tarot decks and oracle cards I own. This is only a handful the ones I own.

 

tarot decks, mary-el tarot, zombie tarot, haindl tarot, voyager tarot, mythic oracle, tarot, book of shadows tarot

Some of my decks.

Starting at the top and going clockwise:

The Book of Shadows Tarot 

Mythic Oracle

Zombie Tarot 

The Mary-El Tarot 

Haindl Tarot

Voyager Tarot

In the center: The Herbal Tarot 

I’ll share more decks in future posts.

If you have any favorites tarot or oracle decks, please share them!

 

 

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Knightriders – Knights on Bikes

George Romero is well-known as the director of such classic zombie films as Night of the Living Dead (1968), Dawn of the Dead (1978), Day of the Dead (1985), and other horror thrillers such as Season of the Witch (1972) and Creepshow (1982).

But did you know he also directed a movie about the members of a travelling troupe who dress up as knights and stage jousting tourneys? On motorcycles?

Well, he did. It’s called Knightriders and it was released in 1981. It stars a very young Ed Harris, Patricia Talman of Babylon 5 fame, Donald Genaro, that blood-sucking lawyer from Jurassic Park playing a blood-sucking agent in this movie, and Tom Savini, who’s not only an actor, stuntman and director but also did the makeup and special effects for many of Romero’s films.

I watched the Blu-Ray last night. I’d seen the movie before quite some time ago. but I remembered I had enjoyed it.

It’s a quirky, off-the-wall kinda of movie that, while I was watching it, I was like really? Seriously?

But it was a fun movie. And it had heart to it. The story is pretty basic. Harris’ character is Billy, the “king” of this travelling troupe of armor-plated motorcyclists, which includes not only Billy’s knights, but the black knights led by Morgan who’s played by Savini. The troupe travel from one small town to another staging jousting tourneys on motorcycles. For most of those who travel with the group, including the merchants who sell their wares, it’s a job. A gig.

But not for Billy. In his heart he believes in the ideals of chivalry and honor the knights of Camelot embody but those ideals are threatened by a sleazy agent who wants to take the act national.

Even Romero, in an interview included in the bonus features, admits it’s not one of his more successful movies. But this movie has heart and, despite its dated look and equally dated dialogue, I very much enjoyed it. Plus the character of Merlin, who’s the troupe’s resident physician, patching up the cyclists after their jousts, and played by the late African-American actor/storyteller Brother Blue, is a lot of fun. Probably one of the most entertaining Merlins I’ve ever come across.

The  movie is a bit long, running at over two hours, but that’s a minor quibble.

I give it four popcorn boxes, if only for the sheer audaciousness of putting knights on motorcycles. 🙂

popcorn, movies, films, reviews, movie ratings

popcorn, movies, films, reviews, movie ratingspopcorn, movies, films, reviews, movie ratingspopcorn, movies, films, reviews, movie ratings

Preparing for Tarot & Writing

tarot, tarot reader, tarot cards, fortune telling, fortune teller,As I mentioned in a previous post, I’m going to be writing a series of books on writing with the tarot. As part of my preparation, I’m designating Tuesdays and Thursdays of each week Tarot Tuesday and Tarot Thursday. I’ll blog about the tarot and, specifically, how you can use to it write creatively.

For the remainder of March, I’ll blog about the tarot, spreads, interpreting the cards, etc. My plan for April, however, is to delve more specifically into using the tarot for writing.

If you’re interested in joining me as I explore tarot and writing, all you’ll really need  is a pen and notebook or a tablet or a smartphone or a laptop or whatever you use to write and store stuff.

And a tarot deck.

You have a LOT of options available to you. There are so many tarot decks out there for all and any interests it boggles the mind. Aeclectic Tarot is the place to go to help you choose a tarot deck. Highly, highly recommend that website.

It not only has  links to just about every tarot deck out there, it also offers reviews and, best of all, you can see sample cards. That’s important because you want to choose a deck that you’ll like working with. Tarot decks are about images and colors, shapes and objects, people and settings.

Steampunk Tarot by Barbara Moore

You don’t want to choose a deck you can’t relate to. There are baseball tarot decks, vampire tarot decks, dragon tarot decks, cat tarot decks. There’s even a steampunk tarot and, as you saw in an earlier post, a zombie tarot.

But, if you don’t want to shell out a lot of money for a tarot deck, and you have the ability to download an app, check out the tarot apps at Galaxy Tone. Most of these app tarots will run you about, oh, four or five dollars, but you’ll have access to an entire tarot  deck and the apps are just as useful for writing with tarot as the cards themselves. I know, I have four of these apps and I love ’em!

Plus you get the non-pro Galaxy Tarot for free! The only difference between the free version and the pro version is the number of spreads you have available. Again, for using the tarot to write, the free version is perfectly fine.

You’ll probably find other tarot apps out there so just do a search for them.

So, if you have a tarot deck, cards or app, and a notebook, that’s all you’ll need. Oh, and, of course, the work you’ll put in doing the writing. I’ll provide the rest.

Tarot for Writers – Corrine Kenner

I also strongly recommend at some point that you get your hands on Corinne Kenner’s Tarot for Writers book. I mentioned before that this is THE book if you’re interested in writing and using tarot.

Okay, time for me to get ready to head to work. Putting in some extra hours tonight. But tomorrow I’ll talk about the tarot in general and on Thursday about using spreads.

Have a nice night!

More Snow, More Tarot & Vikings!

Today is Thursday? Right? It’s been that kind of a week. I’m in the process of finishing edits for Her Lone Wolves, which tends to involve a different side of my brain than the brain that does the actual writing. I’m also running to doctor’s appointments (news is, of course, lose WEIGHT and EXERCISE) and I’m still getting rid of stuff. More books to sort through. And working extra hours at the ENJ (Evil Night Job). Fun, fun, fun!

Oh, and we got slammed with more snow the past few days. About seven inches more. See this? This is the backyard.

March Snow

Sun’s out today so we’re starting to get some melt and we’re supposed to even hit the low 40s on Monday, but it’s been a long, hard, cold, snowy winter.

Anyway, I needed to loosen up after all the travails of this week. So I picked up my Olympus Tarot deck and pulled this card.The Wheel It’s The Wheel or what is usually known as The Wheel of Fortune in traditional decks.

In the card we have the Moirae or what are commonly known as the Fates. There are three of them: Clotho the spinner, Lakhesis the measurer and Atropos, who cut the thread. The Moirae are symbolic of the eventual destiny of mortals.

It’s appropriate that in the Olympus Tarot they represent the Wheel of Fortune, for it is the card that represents life and death, fate and destiny.

The booklet that comes with the Olympus Tarot describes The Wheel card as “the three which guide destiny…more than goddesses…they sit on the lap of Zeus, but Zeus cannot touch them.” Even the king of the gods cannot sway them or deter them from their pupose. They are unavoidable thought and inevitableness.

This card also represents the Fates as the three stages of a woman’s life: maiden, mother and crone. The maiden spins the wheel that unravels our life, symbolizing birth; the mother decides how long the thread will be, representing the fruitfulness of our existence on earth, no matter how long or how short it is, and the crone is death, as she is the one who cuts the thread.

In Tarot for Writers, there are some quick brainstorming exercise that can be used to break writer’s block. I don’t necessarily believe in “writer’s block”. I think of it as more as “writer is sidetracked” or “writer has got a lot on his/her mind” or “writer has no idea what the heck to write about.” Brainstorming exercises can help you get back on track, move past whatever monkey-mind nonsense is distracting you or give you something to write about.

I’m going to use this card and select a brainstorming exercise at random from the book. It’s called What Happens Next. It says I should write about what I imagine might happen next.

Hmmm, well, I can see these three finishing up their spinning, measuring and snipping for the day and deciding to go out for the night. I mean they can’t possibly do that all the time, can they? Yes, there are billions of threads representing billions of lives that have to be spun and measured and cut, but surely these ladies get a night off once in a thousand years or so?

But where would they go? Would they be invited up to Mount Olympus to party with the happening crowd? Or would even the immortal gods not want these Debbie Downers hanging around? More than likely they’d go down to Hades’s realm and hang out with him and Persephone. They are the reasons Hades has a realm to rule over after all. All those souls whose lives are spun out and then cut by Atropos’s shears.

Yeah, that’s where’d they go to hang out. With Hades. They chat with Charon as he ferries them across the River Styx, pet Cerberus’ three heads as they make their way to the throne room and then whoop it up with the God of the Underworld. He would definitely appreciate all the hard work they do and probably show them a good time. 🙂

Anyway, if at some point I wanted to write a story based on the Greek myths, it would be kind of fun to cast these three as characters in the book.

Do they get along as they go about their business? Do they bicker and fight? Are they related? Does one enjoy her job more than the other? Does one hate her job? Perhaps one of them feels sympathy for the mortals who lives they are responsible for?

Oh, I almost forgot!! Vikings is on tonight. Yay!

Vikings – History Channel

I should have used a tarot based on Vikings for this post. Except I don’t have one. There are some available though. Here’s one  deck. Hmm, that deck looks pretty good. I think I’ll have to pick it up. 😉

The Hero with a Thousand Faces – Myth & Dream

I finally started re-reading The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell, and I thought I’d share some of the more noteworthy quotes. The last time I read it, which was a few years ago, I remembered how densely packed the book was and that it contained much that was inspiring and thought-provoking.

These quotes are from the Prologue, Part One – Myth and Dream. In that chapter, Campbell talks about the similarities between myths and dreams, and that the archetypes that inhabit both are universal across time and space.

“The latest incarnation of Oedipus, the continued romance of Beauty and the Beast, stand this afternoon on the corner of Forty-Second Street and Fifth Avenue, waiting for the traffic light to change.” (p. 2)

“Dream is the personalized myth, myth the depersonalized dream; both myth and dream are symbolic in the same dream, sleep, Diana Castlegeneral way of the dynamics of the psyche. But in the dream the forms are quirked by the peculiar troubles of the dreamer, whereas in myth the problems and solutions shown are directly valid for all mankind.” – (p. 14)

“The hero, therefore, is the man or woman who has been able to battle past the personal and local historical limitations to the generally valid, normally human forms” – (p. 14)

And my favorite.

“Furthermore, we have not even to risk the adventure alone; for the heroes of all time have gone before us; the labyrinth is thoroughly known; we have only to follow the thread of the hero-path. And where we had thought to find an abomination, we shall find a god; where we had thought to slay another, we shall slay ourselves; where we had thought to travel outward, we shall come to the center of our own existence; where we had thought to be alone, we shall be with all the world.” (p.18)

from Joseph Campbell, The Hero with a Thousand Faces, (3rd edition)

Hero’s Journey & TED Talks

hero, dragon, knight, hero's journey, hero with a thousand faces, mythology, mythTED – Technology, Entertainment, Design. That is how TED came about in 1984 as a conference bringing together folks from those three disciplines to talk about stuff.

People love to talk and they love to share their ideas. That’s one of the reasons  we blog, right? Or Facebook or Twitter. Now, I’m not much of a talker per se, but I do like to write. Or, at least, I’d rather write than talk.

So, anyway, if you’re looking to listen and watch people talk about all KINDS of stuff, head on over to TED.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the hero’s journey as you can see from a previous blog post. I still haven’t started reading The Hero With a Thousand Faces, but as soon as I finish The Snow Queen I will. A book that definitely follows the Hero’s Journey. The heroine, Moon, left home, was tested and tried and tested again, gained enemies and allies, went through her Ordeal, including “Death” and “Resurrection, and is now On the Road Back, but she still has more tests to undergo before she achieves (or doesn’t achieve) her goal.

I know she achieves it because I’ve read the book before, but I’m still enjoying the journey. Funny how that works, which attests to the fact that we can read some books over and over or watch some movies over and over and still be drawn into them.

I found this five minute video over at TED about the Hero’s Journey. It’s really good as it’s a brief, succinct intro to the Hero’s Journey

The Hero with a Thousand Faces

hero with a thousand faces, mythology, joseph campbellEarlier I’d mentioned a bunch of books I had picked up from the library. Unfortunately, a few of the books, once I started reading them, didn’t hold my interest. Wasn’t really a reflection of the books, per se. Sometimes I’m just not in a particular mood for a certain kind of book. Plus, I’ve been re-reading Joan Vinge’s The Snow Queen for the past few weeks and I want to finish it so that I can re-read the sequel, The Summer Queen. 

A book I suddenly got an urge to re-read is Joseph Campbell’s The Hero With a Thousand Faces. If you’ve heard or read anything about the Hero’s Journey, particularly as it was laid out by Christopher Vogler in his book, The Writer’s Journey, this is the book that started it all.

I’d read Hero with a Thousand Faces oh, geez, I don’t know, about 10 years ago? I know it’s been awhile. It’s a very dense book, not one you can read through quickly, but I recall that after I finished it I felt as if I’d been on my own hero’s journey.

hero, dragon, knight, hero's journey, hero with a thousand faces, mythology, mythOne of the reasons I’m so keen on re-reading the book is that I’ve decided to read and study more mythology and incorporating it in my writing and my tarot readings. I’ve always  loved myth, since I was a kid I’ve been strongly drawn to it and, in all honesty, no matter what kind of stories we write or tell or watch or create, we’re pretty much just re-telling the same ancient myths, legends and fairytales. We’re just putting our own personal and cultural spin on them.

Campbell also has a number of quotes that, over the years, have resonated with me and actually helped me get through some rough times.

Here are a few of them.

It is by going down into the abyss that we recover the treasures of life. Where you stumble, there lies your treasure.

Life is without meaning. You bring the meaning to it. The meaning of life is whatever you ascribe it to be. Being alive is the meaning.

The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.

Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors where there were only walls.

—Joseph Campbell