I was sent a copy of Tarot Flash Cards from the Living Magick Learning Cards(r) Series. The creator are Jadzia DeForest & Jay Greenman DeForest. This 2010 publication is 84 cards including the 78 that relate to the Tarot.
When I got the box, I was very impressed with the sturdy nature of the container. As a collector of Tarot decks, I’m often disappointed by the packaging. This box is solidly constructed. I believe it would hold up to being tossed in a backpack to be lugged about while studying the Tarot.
Let me make it clear that this is not a deck although you could use it as such if you liked. It is a system of flash cards to study the Tarot. You could use these as a tool in a group as well as by yourself.
- The non-Tarot cards are as follows:
- The Title card which touts the Astrology Flash Cards as well as the Rune Flash Cards
- An “About This Deck” card which offers that the deck was created with the beginner in mind. Also there is a succinct
how to use these cards” section.
- A “Numerology” card and the back is for “Suits & Elements”. Kudos for mentioning the Wands/Swords issue.
- A “Recommended Reading” card that has two sections. One for beginners and one for more advanced books.
- An “About The Court Cards” card that gives a fairly standard description of the Courts but does make the distinction about gender in the courts. Kudos for that as well.
- A card for “Terminology”. The back of this card gives their views of “Reversals.”
I have a quibble about that reversal card that I’ll go into a bit later.
Overall, I really liked this system. The colors are tan with a brown border and than a larger white border. Very unassuming and no worries about what color goes with what card. No pictures to distract on the Major Arcana cards. The Minors each feature the same picture for that suit (Cup/Sword/Wand/Pentacle) with the number of the card. The information on each card is specific and generally accepted by the Tarot community.
I drew two cards at random (well, I drew deliberately from the Minors as well as from the Majors) to share those meanings.
- Ace of Pentacles
- Theme: Prosperity
- Pentacles: Work, Money, Education
- Aces: Beginnings, Ideas, Potential
- Keywords: Good Fortune, Rewards, New Job, Promotion, Security, Graduation, Starting School
- Ace of Pentacles (Rx)
- Theme: Materialism
- Pentacles: Work, Money, Education
- Keywords: Materialistic, Greedy, Worried About Finances, Monetary Delays, Stuck In A Rut, Hoarding Money and Possessions
- The Star
- Theme: Hope
- Astrology: Aquarius
- Major Arcana: Spiritual Journey
- Keywords: Guidance, Faith, Seeking Answers, Inspiration, Relief, Insight, Direction, Creativity, Harmony
- The Star(Rx)
- Theme: Hopeless
- Keywords: Disillusioned, Delays, Hopelessness, Low Self Esteem, Arrogant, Dominating, Sabotaging, Lacking Creativity
So the things that work well for me are the repetition of the meaning of the suits and the numerology. I am a fan of layered repetition. The keywords are good and give a nice foundation for branching out. My expectation is that those that use this system would not limit themselves to just these. The whole point of Tarot study for me is expansion.
Now about that quibble I had on the reversals. These cards offer the interesting explanation that if your reversal is surrounded by upright cards, it should be read as the reversed card’s “more positive meaning.” I am guessing that they are hinting at Elemental Dignities here but there is so much more to that system. It is one I have only stuck the tip of a toe into so I am not a good one to ask about it. But I do think that they lessen the meaning of reversals. It seems like an easy out to me to say that if the surrounding cards are positive, your negative isn’t as bad.
Don’t get me wrong. I can see the value of that, but I don’t think that is something you need to learn as a beginner. That, for me, is a deeper lesson that needs to come with long-term study. Lord love a duck–that makes me sound like an old-fashioned stick-in-the-mud, doesn’t it? Oh well. 🙂 I turn 50 in one month so I guess I qualify.
All in all I would give this system a hearty recommendation for those who want to learn the Tarot. It could be a fun game as well at Tarot meetings where you have to guess as many keywords as you can in a set amount of time.
Do check out the other Flash Card sets on Astrology and Runes. I’m going to be ordering the Astrology set based on the thoroughness of these Tarot Flash Cards from Living Magick.
In a matter of disclosure, I do not know the DeForests (that I am aware of, lol. In the Pagan community it’s tough to keep up with names). They did write to me to ask me if I would list their deck on my list of decks. When I told them those were decks I owned, I said I’d be happy to do a review. They sent me the deck.
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