Today I want to share with you one of my all time favorite decks - super special to me - the deck that lead me to one of my all time favorite tarot-type practices. It's technically not a tarot, but an oracle deck. I found it at a garage sale waaaaaaay back when I lived in Portland, and I'd never seen anything like it. It's called Earth Voices, "heard" by Beridha and "energetically hand scribed" by Jacqueline Rene (Otter by Terra Green) - clearly a lovingly and communally-crafted small-run, small-eco-press deck that magically found its way to my little hands one summer when I really needed a new friend.
Each card offers an imaginal meditation on a natural element, animal, or rhythm.
I was so taken by these cards' simplicity and complexity and power and calming presence that they became my monthly cycle deck - every moon I would draw a card and reflect on it, orient towards it, let it prepare me for the lessons of the coming cycle and reflect on the lessons of the cycle drawing to a close - and how they related to one another.
Over time, this created a beautiful kind of continuity in my inner world that, in my outer world, I drew incredible strength from. Lunar cycles are a rhythm we humans know deeply, and one that naturally synchs up with our personal rhythms of body, mood, fertility, sexuality, growth, decay, and lessons of transformation. I let this rhythm guide my introduction to these cards, so that it took years for me to meet all of them, but I have a very loving and familiar relationship with each one. I can still recall certain moons of my life that brought particularly intense lessons by their Earth Voices card - oh, Snakes July-ish of 2008, I remember you well.
Regardless of whether you are a person who bleeds with the moon, I would encourage you to explore a practice of monthly draws - a chance to integrate lessons of the month, get in tune with the moon and her seasons, and begin to record these meditations in words and images that you can reflect on and weave together as time moves on. We are so oriented in the dominant culture towards action - doing, making, judging, achieving, proving, yang, solar consciousness, whatever you want to call it - and this attitude often creeps into even our daily devotional practices or daily draws, preparing us for the action of the day. A lunar practice of chill meditative reflection is soothing and deepening and brings its own magical rewards.
Maybe there's a particular deck that speaks to you on this level, encourages you to get dreamy or connected to the more-than-human world?
Now, for the really magical part. Wouldn't you like to play with these lovely Gaian spirituality cards yourself?I have looked and looked for Earth Voices online, and never found a thing. It was always a beautiful mystery that I fantasized belonged to some sort of woodsy Oregonian hippie tribe, who somehow missed the internet. Today, I thought, well I'll just try again, for the blog - and low and behold, I found what's obviously an oldish website, but complete with the Earth Voices cards all laid out for you to use too! There's even a few new cards (!!!!) that exist in this virtual form and were never included in my deck! How freaking exciting is this!! Click here or the image below to see and play with them for yourself...
Do you have ideas for what a lunar practice might entail for you? How might you create a space once a month that helps you chill, relax and reflect? Some questions to begin with might be one or more of these: "What am I letting bleed away from me? What do I no longer need to house within me? What lesson do I need to be attending to? What do I choose to nourish and grow within me? Who are my allies in this cycle? Where does the more-than-human world support me now? What do I have to learn from the more-than-human world? Where can I go in nature to find restoration and renewal?"
PS: The upcoming Pisces new moon on the Spring Equinox would be a great time to begin!
Kaeti is a therapist, teacher, and dreamer based in Long Beach, California. All of her work (and play!) is interested in dismantling intersections of oppression and breathing magic and radical healing into all the daily corners of her life, into all the spaces of community she helps weave.
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