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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

My Tarot Decks: Tarot of the Mermaids

So far this has got to be my favorite Tarot deck ever. Why? Because I love mermaids. I always have and always will. My obsession with mermaids started when I first saw The Little Mermaid (I must have been about four at the time), and I never grew out of that obsession. These days my love of mermaids manifests as owning—and swimming in—four mermaid tails (one of which is pictured below), not to mention owning a mermaid Oracle deck with another pre-ordered, and reading Tarot with a mermaid-themed deck. In short, if something is related to mermaids in any way, then it must be mine!

Showing off my love of mermaids in my
Mermagica Dragon Tail (March 2014)
So, of course, it was love at first sight when I saw this deck on Aeclectic Tarot. I just knew I had to have it. I didn’t get it right away; in fact, it was a couple months before I was able to. Just like my Llewellyn Tarot deck, I purchased this one back in March when I went to the coast. However, I found this one at Things Rich and Strange. (I was very tempted to get the Lovecraft deck as well, but I was moving the following week and just in general I’m not made of money.)

I was sold on this deck because it’s mermaid-themed, but there’s no denying how pretty this deck is, and would be even if it didn’t include mermaids. Before I decided to only use this deck on myself, I got a lot of compliments on it from the folks on Oranum and the people in my Meetup group. The art style and color scheme is nice and soft, and in general pretty easy on the eyes. I like that each suit has its own color, for example the Swords being dark blue and the Pentacles being a kind-of orangey color. This makes it easy for me when I am putting the deck back in order between or after a reading.

While this deck is Waite-based like my Llewellyn deck, there are some differences between Rider-Waite and Mermaids. The Minor Arcana suits are still called “Wands”, “Cups”, “Swords”, and “Pentacles” but the aforementioned items don’t actually show up. Instead we have oars for Wands, shells for Cups, tritons for Swords, and what I assume are bubbles or pearls for Pentacles. (See below.)

Above:  Tarot of the Mermaids.
Below:  Radiant Rider-Waite

As I mentioned before, I used to use this deck while reading for other people. In fact it is one of the decks that, as of recently, I have used the most often. However I decided to use it on only myself because of my love of mermaids and how much the ocean and mermaids resonate with me on a deeply personal level. Whether I’m reading for others or myself, though, it has always been an accurate and faithful deck. When I moved out in March I was doing a one-card reading for myself every morning, just like what I do on this blog, and I was feeling very nervous on the morning of my move because this was the first time I would be living on my own. That morning I drew The Fool reversed. This made a lot of sense because I interpret The Fool as representing new beginnings and, when reversed, a premature start. This was very much how I felt that day. The next morning, I was feeling better and wound up drawing The Fool upright.

Another thing that I have done with this deck is pair it with my mermaid Oracle deck during a reading. I have read that some Tarot readers will end a reading by drawing an Oracle card and I felt like trying this myself. I feel that I have gotten good results and that the two decks complement each other nicely given their shared visual themes.

As you can see, I have used this deck quite a bit! I love it to pieces and I know that I will have this for a long time and won’t easily part with it. This is definitely a deck that I would recommend to beginners because it’s close enough to the Waite deck to follow along with a book, and because the suits of the Minor Arcana are pretty much color-coded. However, since this came in a box, its Little White Book is more of a booklet so when learning with this deck it is best to use an actual book. (I highly recommend Barbara Moore’s Tarot for Beginners and the book I learned with, Carolyn Flynn and Arlene Tognetti's The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Tarot Spreads.)

Next week I’ll be talking about my Radiant Rider-Waite deck. I hope to see you there! 

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