Arcana of Astrology Review (by BlackandtheMoon)

You really don’t need to know shit about astrology to use this deck, trust me. I don’t even know the dates for the zodiac signs and I glean clear, consice information from it. 

I almost don’t even know where to start when trying to convey my love for this deck. This is the Thneed of decks. It’s genuinely a “fine-thing-that-all-people need.”

First off, it’s an oracle deck with 42 amazingly illustrated cards in a gorgeous box. Don’t know what the fuck Hygeia means when you draw it in a reading? Never fear, there are three additional keyword cards. 

For anyone interested in learning astrology, these cards are a great jumping off point.

(This, by the way, is the second, expanded edition of the deck. If you have the original first edition, your deck will not have all the cards seen here.) 

This deck is made up of different groups of cards. Firstly: Zodiac signs and their constellations.

Isn’t that shit just to die for? I wish I could decorate my walls with it. Oh wait, you can. 

Next up: planet cards.

If you know your Roman mythology, you probably already have a pretty good grasp on these cards’ meanings, but again, if not: keyword cards.

There are the nine planets of the Solar System (yes, Pluto is a goddamn planet), the Sun, and the Moon. And speaking of the Moon…

There are eight different moon phase cards. I nearly always have at least one of the moon phase cards sitting on my altar (which is a fantastic use for any of the cards in this deck). It could be the current moon phase, a moon phase’s energy I’m trying to harness, or a reminder that I have some shit planned for a specific moon phase coming up. 

As I mentioned earlier, the second edition of the Arcana of Astrology has more cards than the first (as well as many of them reimagined), and these are the “new” cards: the asteroids and eclipses.

Also, have I mentioned that these cards are the exact same size as BlackandtheMoon’s other decks? Yep, these are perfect to shuffle into your Antique Anatomy Tarot or Oracle of Oddities for a little extra oomph in a reading. 

If you give a fuck, these cards also photograph beautifully. 

In conclusion, do you need this deck? Yes. Get it here.

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The Fountain Tarot Review

This deck feels like a breezy, blue-skied day with freezing temperatures. It’s cold in that pure, clean way. Do you know what I mean?

I’ve been working with this deck for a while and the best word I have for its energy is “spacious.” Not like big echoing hallways, but like light years between planets. Fucking expansive.

I love this deck.

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The first thing I’d like to talk about is this deck’s extra card: The Fountain.

Unnumbered but for an infinity symbol, it’s the 22nd card in its Major Arcana.

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I’ll admit I was offended at first. I mean, who the fuck just adds a major? Who do these people think they are?

But then I read its description in the guidebook. It’s under and behind everything, that breath between The World and The Fool, the escape from the cycle, and now I wish all decks had it.

The artwork has a great style, combining organic human forms with hard geometrical shapes. It has a nice balance between light colored and dark colored cards.

There are too many decks out there populated by skinny blonde hipster humans, and thankfully, this is not one of them.

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Here are some of my favorite majors:

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While the images on the cards are very emotive, I would never use this deck for a relationship or “love” reading. Why? It doesn’t really give a fuck. It’s just so big and ancient that it’s not even that it doesn’t have time for your little bullshit, it’s that it doesn’t even notice it. This shit is a direct line to the Source, and you had better have one hell of an important question of you’re going to interrupt its work. It’s not pompous, it’s just busy.

Here are some of my favorite minors:

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The cardstock is good. Not too flimsy, not too hard, and the size is…normal. I don’t really know what to say about cardstock unless I have something to bitch about. The silver edges on the deck are a great touch.

So…do you need this deck? Yep.

Where can you get it? Right here.

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But your question had better be fucking important.

The Truth About Picking your First Tarot Deck

I’m going to say some shit here no one was honest enough to tell me when I started looking for my first tarot deck. Brace yourself, now.

No, you may not pick “whatever deck calls to you.”

Not this time. Next time maybe, but not this one. My recommendation:

Google “RIDER WAITE CLONE” and fucking pick one.

Rider Waite, Universal Rider Waite, Golden Rider Tarot

Rider Waite, Universal Rider Waite, Golden Rider Tarot

“But they’re all the same!”

Yep. That’s the point.

“WHY?”

  1. Information on this specific deck is widely available.
  2. The cards have enough symbolism to remind you what each card means.
  3. The cards don’t have so much symbolism that you can’t tell what’s going on.
  4. Please just trust me.

“But I like Hello Kitty and Gummy Bears!”

Photo Collage Maker_YhR6PD

Not enough symbolism.

“But I saw this deck on Instagram…”

The Wild Unknown

The Wild Unknown

Not enough symbolism.

“But there was this deck on Kickstarter…”

The Wooden Tarot

The Wooden Tarot

Not enough symbolism.

“But my favorite author just came out with a deck…”

Raven's Prophecy Tarot

Raven’s Prophecy Tarot

Not enough symbolism, but the guidebook is fantastic.

“But I was at Barnes and Noble and I saw this deck…”

Deviant Moon Tarot

Deviant Moon Tarot

Deviant symbolism.

“But this deck is so beautiful!”

Tarot of the Secret Forest

Tarot of the Secret Forest

Too much symbolism.

“But…”

Wildwood Tarot

Wildwood Tarot

Too much AND deviant symbolism.

If you want pretty cards, go for whatever your little heart desires. But if you want to read and really understand the tarot, please just pick an ugly goddamn deck. You’ll thank me later.

Being Picky Makes Life Fucking Hard

I’m ridiculously picky about my Tarot and Oracle decks. Disgustingly so. And it makes my life fucking difficult.

Some people are like, “I stopped by my local metaphysical shop and grabbed a new deck!” You…you just GRABBED one? Like you went there and they actually had one you liked? They’ll say, “Well, they have like 30 different decks to choose from–”

Stop it. My local metaphysical shop has 50 decks and I hate them all.

No flowers.

No goddamn angels.

I don’t want to hear about fucking faeries unless they’re Brian Froud.

Animals are fine, but they need to be stylized nicely.

No cutesy bulging-eyed bullshit.

No white backgrounds.

No abstract colored/mandala cards–I have the On High Tarot, thank you very much, and all this other shit will never be nearly as good.

No crystal cards. I have actual crystals.

No romance novel covers.

No neo “goth” decks with scantily-glad Hot Topic girls crying mascara and drooling blood.

No photograph decks.

No mermaids.

No ugly people.

I don’t connect with Asian-style decks, even though I love how some of them look.

Get that Christo-Pagan shit away from me.

No comic book illustrations.

Did I mention fuck angels?

Also, I have weird “balance” rules. Gender: I want females AND MALES in my deck. And I want the genders to be impartial. If there are men on two cards and they’re both “knight-in-shining-armor” on a white horse bullshit–that’s still an all female deck. Alternatively, a deck full of naked women lounging their way through the major arcana with couple iron-clad men is a male deck.

Which brings me to my next issue: nudity. Please, draw me some naked people. Really. But not just for the sake of drawing titties. I want the nudity to have a fucking reason. It needs to add meaning to the cards. This is the tarot, for Christ’s sake, it’s supposed to be a striking depiction of the human condition, not a fucking porno. I want naked men and women, thanks.

So, with all of those parameters, decks I like are hard to find.

Do you have special “rules” when it comes to your decks? Or am I the only asshole with 500 specifications?