Pack information: 65 card deck with 169 page good quality booklet both contained within a solid box.
Card dimensions: 89 x 127 mms
Author: John Holland.
Cover Illustration Bryn Starr Best
Card illustrations John Matson
Back of box says: The 65 beautifully illustrated cards in this deck will create a powerful bridge between your psychic abilities and the ancient knowledge and meanings of the tarot; and will help you develop intuitive insights about all areas of your life including love and relationships, business matters, and even career changes.
This fascinating deck will work for you whether you're a novice or are already in tune with your psychic abilities. In the accompanying guidebook, psychic medium John Holland imparts techniques that he's practiced himself and taught in his workshops, relating to colours, symbology, shapes, words, card spreads, divination, numerology, energy centres, imagination, and more. By using the cards, you'll be able to incorporate John's techniques when you do a tarot reading for yourself or others.
Guest Review by Vernon Marshall
The world of the Tarot can be bewildering to beginners. They have taken a course or read a book on Tarot. They learn the names of the Major Arcana cards and the suits. They then acquire a Tarot deck that seems totally at variance with everything they have learned. The cards of the Psychic Tarot do not look like traditional Tarot cards, they do not bear the same archetypal figures, and there is even a different number of cards. This deck, however, is impressive.
Firstly, the cards are certainly different. Each card of the Major Arcana is renamed, although, for those needing a connection with the traditional Tarot, the guidebook does indicate which traditional archetype is represented by each new figure. For example, card number 5, traditionally the Hierophant, is given here as the Wisdom Card. The Star is replaced with Hope, and the Hermit is replaced with Solitude.
The suits of the Minor Arcana are also differently named as Physical, Emotions, Mental and Spirit, the cards of the four suits each bearing a different colour border. There are also only nine cards in each suit, as there are no “Royal Cards.” Instead, however, there are seven Chakra cards. If you have done your sums you will have discovered that there are thus only 65 cards in the deck instead of the customary 78. The conclusion I drew from these changes is that the deck implies some previous experience in using the Tarot. Although John Holland suggests that this deck can be used by beginners as well as by more experienced users, I did feel that some knowledge beforehand would be helpful though not crucial.
Secondly, the cards come with a different approach to Tarot. John Holland has focused on the significance of colours, numbers, symbols and images. The more that the guidebook is used the more the user of this Tarot can acquire an understanding of how intuition can be nurtured from a psychical perspective.
Not only does he give over a section of the guidebook to issues such as clairsentience and clairvoyance, but he also asks for a careful reflection on the artwork itself. I do find the artwork very pleasing and evocative. The pictures are often quite simple, but the varied colours and the soft-edged figures create a gentle and attractive ambience. The characters portrayed are dressed in mediaeval costumes and that pleases me too. I find modern images too difficult to absorb into my intuitive mind!
The guidebook is more than adequate with its introduction to psychic awareness, the simplicity of the explanation of the cards, and the positive attitude taken to divination. Of course, some critics would find fault in the way that there is a lack of a sharper, more fearful, more challenging counsel from the cards. The fiercest images, such as the Devil, the Death card, the Hanged Man, have been replaced by Temptation, Transformation, and Sacrifice.
Holland insists also that there are no reverse meanings. If a card is drawn upside down then the reader should simply turn it the right way round and carry on. The purpose of the deck is to help the user enjoy positive experiences. The individual is encouraged to make proper and more beneficial changes in their life. This explains the inclusion of the seven Chakra cards. At first sight I did think they were an unusual addition. When they appear in a reading it is a call for awareness of what part of the self is in need and which type of energy is required.
The guidebook suggests four spreads. There is a one-card spread, something useful for a simple message or as a means of reflection. There is a three card spread, with each card representing the past, the present, and the future. The five-card spread is similar but with addition counsel sought for the distant past and the distant future. There is then a twelve-card yearly forecast.
This deck will not please everyone, especially those attached to the traditional archetypes. The deck is also impossible, or at least very difficult, to use in the same way as a classic Tarot. The number of the cards makes that an issue, although with use it is possible to utilise the Major Arcana as a traditional Tarot once one understands the parallels between this deck and older ones.
The cards themselves are very attractive but, particularly for me, slightly on the large side. Most decks are the usual 2.5 x 4.5 inches whereas the cards of this deck are 3.5 x 5 inches (9 x 12.5cm). I find them a little difficult to shuffle but, with the fine quality of the card used, the gold embossed edging, and the glossy finish, they are lovely pieces of art in themselves.
The crucial issue for me is that mysterious something that defies rational judgment. It does not matter if the approach to the cards is off-putting, or whether there is a coherent rationale for their design. It does help if the images are pleasing, but it is what happens when the cards are put to use that matters. There is not necessarily a flash of lightning but there is an apprehension of something having been created within oneself. Something speaks to one’s condition, there is something touched inside that encourages us to seek changes in life. There are some Tarot decks that may be attractive, that have excellent guidance, but do not seem to come from that special place from where spiritual counsel comes. This deck has never failed to make me feel encouraged. I have struggled in latter months to make progress in several aspects of my life and have seemed to meet a brick wall. Each reading of the Tarot using this deck, however, has never failed to make me feel empowered and inspired. For all Tarot users, beginners and experienced readers, and those who have not yet attempted to use the Tarot, please consider this worthy tool for your spiritual growth.
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