I found this cute little deck of cards at the Exclusive books winter sale in July last year. It is a really cute and charming deck of 52 cards, depicting 26 “good witches” and 26 “bad witches”. I’m sure everyone knows by now I love a little whimsy in my life, so when I saw these I was ecstatic!
I have been using this deck regularly for the last 6 months and I find it to be cute, helpful and a nice change from tarot and some of my other oracle decks once in a while. Despite the fact that these are rather different in symbolism and rather more whimsical than a traditional deck, I have found that they can offer insight into my own feelings, thoughts and situations of day-to-day life.
I read the cards less from the book and more from my own intuition which is the great thing about an oracle deck, often there is far more room for interpretation than in traditional tarot decks, and it allows your intuition and “wildish” self to take you on a journey.
The little booklet that comes with the cards provides interpretations for the cards and a little spell to try along with them. I have not done any of the spells myself, mostly as I really prefer to write my own, which are more attuned to my needs.
Last night I decided to mix some whimsy with some more serious reading and this is what I got:
I decided to use the Tree of life spread from Barbara Moore’s “Tarot Spreads”.
Before going on I should say I do not work with the Kabbalah currently in my practice although I would love to learn about it at some point. I have a really basic understanding of the Kabbalah and this reading could be taken far deeper with more understanding of the “Tree of Life”.
1. Kether: Crown, spiritual concerns, highest ideals
The Hedge Witch
To me this signified my interest in what some term hedge-riding, or shamanic hedge craft. The liminal spaces of hedges and the wildish nature of them also strikes a chord with me. Not only am I devoted to liminal deities I am also working my way through the Wild woman archetype with “Women who run with the wolves”.
My dreams of bones and skeletons and offerings to Baba Yaga are clearly pushing me to work more closely with the wild woman archetype, as well as embrace liminal energy more in my own craft. I currently live in what can be termed a “liminal space”, not in the city and not in the country but in the “burbs” ( I remember writing an essay about the suburbs as a liminal space for my art history class), and can use this to my advantage.
2. Chokmah: Wisdom, responsibility, creative power, yang, masculine energy
The Wickedest Witch
This wild-looking witch and her imp remind me of the shadow self and working with that wildish nature of the hag. This is the active and activating principle. My creative power lies in embracing this wildish self, something I have been noticing with my work with The High Priestess. This wild self is something which is suppressed in our culture and it is something which needs to be reclaimed, wickedness and all, in order to be fully whole.
The wild woman is the creative urge in women, she is instinct and intuition, and to many she appears to have a “masculine” nature. The Wild woman is filled with stories, art, poetry and dance and she is tap, tap, tapping at my head with her skull-and-bone cane.
3. Binah: Understanding, difficulties, inner knowledge, yin, feminine energy
The Earth Witch
This little witch is the epitome of “Earth” energy and all that the Earth element brings into our lives: nurturing, stability, fertility, practicality, physicality, solidity, womb and tomb, nature and abundance. The Earth is the grounding element. Earth is considered a feminine element, and is the very nature of “Yin” energy.
As a gardener and kitchen witch, Earth is the element that I work with most easily and fully. The Earth is healing, there is nothing like planting seeds in fresh soil with your own hands, or tasting the batter for cupcakes before it goes into to the oven.
This very physical element is one that I’m quite at home in as a Taurus. It does also hold difficulties though, the difficulties of earth are stagnation, stubbornness and materialism, all of which I am dealing with currently in my own life.
4. Chesed: Mercy, grace, opportunities, gifts, power
The Happy Witch
This card links quite nicely with the previous one. This happy witch is in her element, in the home mixing magic.
Domestic bliss and a comfortable home filled with love and joy is one of my perpetual goals. My home is a very important part of my life, it is my safe haven and creative space, it is the space where most of my magic is made. It is where I sleep, make love and where I can take off my mask and just break down if I need to.
5. Geburah: Severity, strength, forces, challenges, conflict, leadership
The Full moon Witch
This card corresponds quite nicely to The Moon in tarot. The moon is intuition, but also illusion. The moon is power, but also madness. The moon is mystery and magic, and it is where I find solace, but occasionally also confusion.
Harnessing the power of the moon is one of the traditional aspects of witchcraft, but even the moon has its challenges, as can be seen in Tarot. The moon is also a symbol of the unconscious and the wild self. The moon is ever-changing, unstable, “inconstant” wild, and potent.
6. Tiphareth: Beauty, achievements, individuality, self, intention, goal
The Love Witch
I let out a little bit of a giggle when I saw this card, as I feel she looks a little like me LOL!
By now everyone knows my devotional relationship to Hathor, and the work that I am doing with Her currently in order to reclaim and embrace my womanhood. This is a very difficult and rewarding journey. Some rituals are lighthearted and sweet, others are ecstatic and others are filled with my tears, but ever is love embraced.
7. Netzach: Victory, love, inspiration, instincts
The New Moon Witch
On the edge of the flip side of the full moon, we have the New moon, a time of beginnings, rebirth and renewal.
In my work with the Gods I have been asked to surrender, and let go of my old self, allowing a new self to be reborn. The New moon is the time after the sacrifice, which is given on the Dark moon. This is a continuous process of death and rebirth which every witch experiences, and it is the way in which we live, learn and grow.
8. Hod: Splendor, thoughts, communication, science
The North Witch
“The North is dark side of every situation; the darkest phase is like an undrinkable, frozen cup of happiness” p35
Of course in the southern Hemisphere, North has quite different connotations, but as the imagery on the card is of a snowscape I decided to keep with the North/Earth/Winter correspondence.
I am always working with the darker side of things, it is my nature, it is my craft, it is how I heal. I am also undergoing a series of shadow workings and dealing with “the dark” side of my psyche, the untouchable/undrinkable essence of Winter and the Unconscious. This is where my thoughts are and in the very frightening way of skeletons and zombies, this is how my unconscious self and the gods are communicating with me in order to get me to listen.
9. Yesod: Foundation, imagination, fantasy, habits, past lives
The Fairy Ring Witch
This card made me very happy, as it communicates to me the very creative potential that I have within myself that as of yet is untapped.
Through my work with the wildish self and shadow work I will be able to tap into this part of myself and will be able to let my imagination soar to new heights.
This card also represents freedom and joy, a freedom and joy that can only be experienced once the muck of oppression and fear is thrown off. This card very much reminds me of the Charge of the Goddess and in particular “All acts of love pleasure are my rituals”.
10. Malkuth: Kingdom, outcome, home, material world, everyday life
The Secret Witch
Masks, we all wear them, sometimes we need them to protect ourselves, sometimes they help us to explore ourselves better. In my own life I wear many masks and some of them are outworn, others have helped me to grow and continue to do so.
Many of my rituals take place with me skyclad and wearing nothing but a veil or mask over my face.
When it comes down to it my path is pretty much a secret and hidden one, despite the fact that I’m not tightly in the broom closet, not many people know what it is I do in my rituals, not many people know what it is that I actually do despite knowing that I am a witch. I like it this way.
This card also made me think of Hekate because of the key and the owl, and my daily devotion to Her and Anubis, as both of them are Gods of Mystery, secrets and “The Hidden”.
For the most part I am “The Secret Witch”, in my daily life I am the little red-head with an interest in the occult, arts and literature, but in Circle I am Nightshade, Devotee and Priestess to Anubis and Hekate, carrying out the “Great work”.
On another note, I got myself the Tarot book “Tall Dark Stranger: Tarot for love and romance” by Corinne Kenner, which I will be reading and working with for Valentines day. I will also be posting a blog on how Valentines day has definitely become a sacred day for me.