Week 30 (O): an exploration of Brian Froud’s Faery Oracle Cards
This deck isn’t tarot per se, but it’s definitely tarot-adjacent. Brian Froud and Jessica Macbeth created this deck, with Froud doing the illustrations and Macbeth responsible for the handy little book that comes with it. This deck came out over a decade ago and I bought it around that time. I didn’t use it for many years, then one full moon picked it up and started using it. There are plenty of general reviews of this deck. This is not one of those reviews. I’m writing about this deck specifically in terms of my relationship to it.
The Oracle Cards are beautiful, miniature works of art laid out neatly on slightly-oversized cards. This deck appeals to my inner child, as I was obsessed with faeries when I was younger. I still really enjoy mythology about the Fae, both old stories and new retellings (looking at you Laurell K. Hamilton). These cards are, if nothing else, a treat to look at. Someone recently recommended that I try tarot meditation, where you focus on one card and use it as a door. I think that would be a thoroughly interesting experience with this deck, and hope to try it soon.
One thing Dianne Sylvan points out is that this deck rarely gives a straight answer, something I’ve also found to be true. It’s actually one of the things I find particularly charming about the deck: like faeries, this deck wants nothing to do with logic. It does what it damn well pleases, so you best get on board with that. Because the deck is unlike traditional tarot, I find it’s optimal for one card draws or three card spreads (which are what I like to do with tarot cards anyway so that suits me fine).
I use The Faeries’ Oracle less regularly now than I once did, since I really like my tarot deck, but I still pluck a card from time to time, and it’s always got some interesting messages for me. I don’t have ample talent as an oracle to begin with, but I still appreciate the cards in and of themselves.
I had a tarot reading done last night by a friend of a friend with whom I immediately felt a connection (Iris X, for those in the northeast who might also be interested – she’s fabulous!). I’ve never had anyone else read for me, so it was an interesting experience in many ways. I had actually just read tarot for myself the previous night, so I was curious to see how the two reads interacted. Spoiler alert: they were very complimentary and almost identical in terms of the take-home messages.
Stacy used the Celtic Cross spread for my reading, which is a fairly common one (though one I rarely if ever work with, preferring three card spreads or one card draws instead). The layout looked like this:
Stacy gave me a choice of a few different decks, asking me to pick the one I was most drawn to. I picked the Chrysalis tarot, a beautiful deck that just felt right to me. (My own deck is Paulina Cassidy’s Joie de Vivre deck, which I adore.) During the reading, Stacy offered quite a bit of insight into things that have been going on in my life, and why they’ve been happening (based on past experiences and the like). I’ll keep the specifics to myself, but suffice it to say this was an experience I deeply appreciated.
What I wonder is: what are the primary motivations for people to get their cards read? What is the attraction of having your fortune told by someone else versus just doing the divination yourself? After all, no one knows you better than you. While Stacy did a beautiful job (and I dearly wish we’d had more time to chat about the reading!), it still felt strange to have someone I had just met telling me about the things that challenge and reward me. Then again, strangers often have more perspective about you than you might; being outsiders, it’s easier for them to look at your life objectively. So I suppose that, in a way, I do understand the appeal.
Readers, if you’ve had your cards or your palm read before, why did you choose to have someone else do it instead of just doing it yourself?