I’m taking the unusual step here of using this space to link directly to another blog, that of Caitlin Matthews, author, scholar, and spiritual teacher.
Together with her husband John, Caitlin has produced a truly astonishing body of work, both in its scope and the very high level of art and commitment to spiritual tradition. This past December John decided to give Caitlin a copy of my limited “Art Deck” edition of the Shining Tribe Tarot. This set consists of individually made archival prints of the original artwork, plus five extra cards. The run is limited to 78 copies (the number of cards in the traditional Tarot), and when we began it I honestly thought we’d sell a handful of copies. We’ve so far sold 54 (Caitlin’s was 52, which of course is the number of cards in a regular deck).
What I love about Caitlin’s article is that it exemplifies what I consider the best use of the Tarot. Not to predict the future, or even to provide psychological insights–valuable as both these qualities are–but as a genuine spiritual guide, even a partner as we move through difficult times. Once, during one of my own hard times, I took up the deck and said to it “Take me home.” The three cards I turned up did just that, lifting me out of my despond into a wider awareness of myself and the situation.
What I also love about what Caitlin did is that it doesn’t work from a pre-determined spread. Instead, there is a back and forth dialogue between her and the cards, allowing not just “prayer” as she calls it, but a real conversation.