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Thursday, January 1, 2015

My Tarot Decks: Black Cats Tarot

I love this deck. As a cat lover, I just can’t help but love it. Like some of my other decks, I couldn’t help but want this deck as soon as I saw it. The fact that it’s a Lo Scarabeo deck makes it even better, in my opinion. I don’t usually see Lo Scarabeo decks that I don’t like.

Title card featuring The Magician

I got this deck back in the summer (2014) when I was at Fuego. They recently got some New Agey-stuff there, including Tarot and Oracle decks. The cat theme got my attention, and the deck wound up being an impulse buy. I hardly regret it!

Like many of my decks, I love the artwork and find the cats to be very cute. This deck has made me want to get some other cat-themed Tarot decks. I also love the symbolism; in my opinion they did the symbolism very well. Two of my favorite cards in this deck are The world and the Five of Pentacles because of their symbolism. In The World, a card that represents the end of a cycle and the beginning of a new cycle, a cat is pictured shedding its skin. The skin is black, and the cat beneath it is white. I find this represents the card’s theme perfectly.


The Five of Pentacles is a card that I interpret as help being available to the querent, though the querent may not want it. I also read this card as advising the querent to accept the help that they may not want. The card in this deck shows a starving mother cat and baby cat underground, while the roots of a tree hang above them. The two cats are hunched over a scrap of fish, seemingly ignorant of the available resources above, or choosing to focus on the barren resource in front of them. What I like so much about this card, which I haven’t seen before on other Five of Pentacles cards, is the skull in the corner—an ominous hint of possible consequences in the situation.

Another thing I liked about this deck, which again I haven’t seen much in the decks that I purchase, is that the Little White Book provides a spread. I haven’t yet used this spread but I like that it was included since I love learning new spreads.

This deck isn’t entirely Waite-based. There are some Waite influences but it is nice to see this deck deviate from what has more or less become the standard. It’s nice to learn a new version of a system, and in general it gives me something new and different to work with.

One of the first things I noticed about this deck, though, was that the cards were pretty slippery. When I was first setting the cards into the order I prefer, I had to keep the cards from falling off the table at the mall. It’s a pretty minor thing overall, however, and doesn’t make the cards completely unusable.

The coloring of the cards are also very dark. This has made it a bit difficult to use the cards at times given that the cats in the deck are black, after all. I have had to look a little closely at some cards, where I haven’t had to do this with my other decks. Another thing about the cards is that they aren’t labeled the way most other Tarot decks I’ve used labeled heir cards. This can cause some confusion with the Royal Court cards (especially Kings and Queens) and the Major Arcanas. In a reading I did with this deck I thought the Queen that was in my spread was a King. It wasn’t until I saw the Queen of Swords (who thankfully is illustrated like her RW counterpart) that I realized that I had drawn a Queen. Because the Majors aren’t labeled, it is best to be well acquainted with them prior to using this deck. Luckily, it isn’t hard to figure out the Minors since they are still numbered.

King and Queen of Pentacles. Black Cats Tarot (top), Radiant Rider Waite (bottom).
Enlarged to show detail.

This is definitely not a beginner’s deck, due to labeling on the cards, but I do overall recommend this deck. I’ve gotten good results with the Black Cats Tarot during readings and I think that animal lovers—cat lovers especially!—will appreciate this deck.

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