By Chrissie Astell , Illustrated by Rene Milot – Published by Watkins (RRP £15.99)
Another deck of Angel Oracle cards hits the shelves, this is a topic which seems to just keep on giving. It interests me, as in how much there is still to offer from the Angel world and I am delighted that these cards deliver something different. Having met the lovely Chrissie Astell a few years back, I know the essence of the lady, kind, gentle, compassionate and without ego and all these qualities are reflected within the 52 cards.
There is a simple beauty within each card, just a word describes each illustrated Angel. The colours are clear and bold and although to some degree quite simple, you can lose yourself in the image to work on a deeper level of clarity.
I used these cards with my meditation group and the messages flowed, many of the cards chosen at random had deep and personal meanings for some of the group. Everybody enjoyed working with them.
I like the idea of using this deck for pulling a card a day for guidance. The accompanying book explains how else they can be used. Lots of ideas for spreads, affirmations and meditation, each card has a quote for each Angel, a box outlined on each page explaining the symbols, along with a brief description, which in my opinion is more than enough, I prefer the idea of tuning in and allowing your own intuition to flow. You cannot fail to connect on some level with these cards, even if you think you are not intuitive, they work.
Watkins have produced a lovely set, lovely quality box and cards, it looks far more valuable that the £15.99 price.
If you like the idea of Angel Oracles then I highly recommend you add this to your collection, you will not be disappointed.
It has been a strange and difficult few months, with the decline of my father’s health I made a choice that I would pretty much stop work and help to look after him. His passing on the 29th January was the biggest tragedy of my life to date. I know I should be grateful that I have been blessed with both my parent’s at my age, but it does not make it any easier when the time comes for them to leave this earth. I have done a lot of soul searching since his passing, I imagine some of you on a spiritual path also question what happens next when it actually happens to someone you love. I have to admit I am struggling with any concept of afterlife at the moment, it just feels like a huge void.
The thing about Tarot is that it does not matter what your beliefs are, whether you are spiritual or not, because the cards understand, they can be both gentle and cruel in their messages. But I have found much comfort in my cards of late. I am digressing …… what I really wanted to talk about was how sometimes things fall in to place just at the right time. Out of the blue, an opportunity to buy TWO unique pieces of art (print) by Pamela Colman Smith came to me. I did not hesitate to purchase one. The print was the original used for the publication of ‘The Golden Vanity’ published in 1903 by Doubleday & McClure, once used, these original prints were exhibited between 1905 and 1907. What happened to them next I do not know. The person I purchased them from also bought them in auction some years back, so when I have time, I will do some research and track their journey.
On arrival of the print, it was more amazing than I dared dream, I could feel its energy, something very special about the picture, just as in the RW tarot deck, each time I look, I see new symbols and details, I cannot stop looking at it. It must have taken a whole ten minutes before I decided to buy the second one. All good, except the price had doubled. I sat on the sellers suggestion of an offer which was a lot to find, then went back with my one and only take it or leave it offer. After a few hours she came back to me and accepted, one of the ‘provisions’ was that I would not hide these from the Tarot world, that anyone interested in Pamela would be able to see them. I agreed, today the second print has turned up, it is as fascinating at the first. Time allowing I hope to have these on display at the London Tarot Festival on June 2nd along with more information. I am thrilled that Mary K Greer will be speaking at the Festival about the life of Pamela Colman Smith as with Geraldine Beskin at the Conference in October. Although Pixie did not get the recognition she deserved in her lifetime, we will make sure she is never forgotten in ours.
As you probably know by now my darling Dad passed on the 29/1/2018 = 23 = 5. The Hierophant. Dad was a leader in everything he did, so fitting he went ‘home’ on this day. Amongst the tears this week there has also been much laughter as we recalled stories from the past, he had the most wonderful sense of humour and taught us to be joyful in all that we did.
Between funeral preparations, sorting paperwork out and taking care of Mum I have found that I have manic OCD (who knew)? Cupboards and drawers that have been stuffed with random nonsense for years have now been emptied, trips to the local tip and charity shops have been a regular thing, I have felt a need to clear out and get rid of the stagnant energy. Of course, amongst all of this I have found some very rare cards which I have decided to sell. Some are duplicates, and to my surprise I have discovered a box from my old shop which I closed 10 years ago with cards which are now worth a small fortune, these I will save for the Festival on 2nd June.
I thought I would share with you an extract from my book Tarot (Hay House) the interpretation of the Hierophant, the meaning may well resonate with you, it reads: If you are someone who is not open minded, try to be more flexible as you may miss out on an important opportunity. Although this card connects with spirituality, personal life events may be making you unsettled right now and reassurance is needed.
The urge to be part of something more satisfying than you are currently experiencing will feel necessary at this stage of your life, there is a sense of getting out there and showing the world who you are and what you can do. The Hierophant may appear physically in your life as a wise friend or teacher. However he manifests in your life, this is an important period for you. A personal journey of learning, knowledge and wisdom, exploring traditions of ancient crafts, meditating and finding peace within yourself, whatever life has in store for you now, this will be one of the most significant periods in your life. As a card of wisdom, listen to your teachers and those who are already on a spiritual path, take from them what you need and leave alone what does not sit right with you. Your own intuition will guide you to what is right and wrong.
As we enter the New Year I thought I should get back to writing my Blog. As you know I usually only write a Blog when I have a story to tell or a rant, but time to get with the modern world and write more (well I am an author you know)!
One of my 2018 ‘resolutions’ (and I use the term loosely) is that I need to streamline everything. I am constantly being pulled from pillar to post and, as I have the attention span of a gnat this is quite a juggling act. One thing I have vowed to do, is to pull a Tarot card each day and today I pulled The Empress, which is interesting as I was prompted to write before I pulled her, I always say the cards know us better than ourselves. But I digress. My dilemma is, what goes? The last two years has been about releasing toxic people, now it is about working smarter. What is your big change going to be this year? 2018 = 11 which means we are in a Justice year, it will be interesting to see what happens in the world of politics and our personal lives as we strive to find balance in all we do.
This year brings two new venues for the London Tarot Festival and the UK Tarot Conference, both venues bigger and more fabulous than before. I can remember the early years with the conference where I would have sleepless night’s months prior to the event, my main concern was would anyone turn up. Now 15 years down the line the registration is closed weeks before as we are fully booked. The Festival, (in partnership with the ladies from The Atlantis Bookshop) has grown in 3 years to the extent we have had to find a bigger venue. The bottom line is that Tarot is shining its light, no longer is it ridiculed as a nonsense fortune telling tool, but now as tool of guidance and insight. Just last year we saw Dior using the Tarot as a design for its catwalk show http://www.harpersbazaar.com/uk/fashion/fashion-news/a14378949/maria-grazia-chiuri-explains-why-were-all-obsessed-with-tarot-cards/) a few years before Dolce & Gabbana produced a range of major arcana perfume, these are just a couple of high profile companies who are seeing the value of Tarot’s deep esoteric history. Tarot has now emerged from the shadows.
2018 TarotScope http://tarotconference.co.uk/tarotscope/
WIN: 5 lucky people to win a one card guidance reading for the year ahead.
DIARY DATES: London Tarot Festival 2nd June
UK Tarot Conference with Rachel Pollack and Benebell Wen 19th 20th October
2019 TarotFest Swiss at Castle Liebegg 23rd June 2019
Looking back at 2017 it has been a year of incredible highs and lows. My trip to Thailand was amazing, then shortly after a visit to Prague. Thailand was on my bucket list and it certainly lived up to my expectations and more, not only was it a spiritual journey but also a trip full of laughter and sunshine. In contrast Prague is a beautiful city enriched with history and long walks.
The London Tarot Festival in May was a sell-out event, and after just 3 years we have outgrown the lovely building at the Eco Centre, however, after many miles of leg work we have found another stunning place called Platform in Finsbury Park, really looking forward to June 2nd 2018 when we do it all again!
The summer flew by with my monthly meditation groups (always full) and cricket teas (yes you read correctly) time away in Spain and my yearly trip to Glastonbury. It is only when I write this down do I realise how lucky I am.
The UK Tarot Conference was one of the best ever, the lovely Sasha Graham who I met in New York last year headlined our event, Steven Bright made his debut, Carrie Paris was her wonderful self with a fascinating workshop, and Andrea Aste our charming Italian friend along with Kirsten Buchholzer and Chloe McCracken made this an event to remember. We are moving to a bigger venue in Kensington next year (19th 20th October) and look forward to Rachel Pollack and Benebell Wen both headlining our event. (Eekk excited face).
Whilst the year has excelled itself work wise, something horrible is happening in the background, my wonderful father has been diagnosed with an aggressive type of Motor Neurone Disease, never in my life have I witnessed an illness so quick and cruel, he is hanging on in there but I know his time is soon. A few years ago I was asked to write an article for a magazine to celebrate Father’s Day, I wrote how blessed I was to have a Dad like mine who gave myself and my two brothers the wings to fly and the security of home. If we were ever to fall, it did not matter what it was or what we had done, he would catch us. Now as he gets weaker we gather around him with our love. So, as I look to 2018 with hope, I also know me and my families lives will change forever. If you are reading this please send a little healing thought, everything is appreciated.
On that note, I do truly wish you all a wonderful Christmas and a very happy and abundant 2018.
With much love