As if I wasn’t lucky enough last month to be on the Storm Cestavani Show, but as a bonus ‘guest’ prize, Storm gifted me the delightful new All Hallow’s Tarot by Robin Tisch-Holister. It took a while for the deck to make it all the way to Canada but I got it this week – and I love it!
Not only did it arrive in a most beautiful bag stuffed with magical toys and candy (thank you Leisa!), the deck itself is fabulous! Hand-drawn, contemporary images mixing themes of Halloween with modern urban living. It’s small, easy to shuffle, great fun to look at and gives an excellent read.
As I do with most new decks – my first reading was a ‘get to know’ you type deal. In this case, I asked the deck to tell me how it typically looks at issues of the spirit, emotions, intellect and body (at least while it’s talking with me.)
The card that came up for the Spirit, representing the fire or particular passion of the deck, was #3, the Empress. She’s a sweet figure in a red hat and purple dress. She wears a green snake like a shawl and stands with her familiars, the owl and the cat.
I interpret this card to mean that the core spirit of the deck is compassion, nurturance and love. It’s striving to help readers find transformation in the darkness, and connect to the grand-mother. Creativity, expansion and love are what matters most.
In the position focusing on the emotions, or the water element, I pulled the King of Wands. Not a lot of water in this card. In the picture, a serious, somewhat tough looking man sits watching, a skull in front of him to his right. In his left hand is a wand/bat and above his right shoulder a sword. Apparently the emotions in this deck can run a little high, but they get things moving.
The themes that jump out for me here are spirited rebellion, mastery of emotional transformation by fire, and a willingness to burn through soggy feelings that inhibit our growth. The deck is reminding me that power is derived from the conscious direction of our emotions, not by letting them rule us.
The position of the Intellect was filled by the 5 of Cups. In this lonely-feeling card, a woman looks sadly in front of her at three smashed pumpkins. Two others are behind her seemingly fresh and bright, but she’s paying no attention to them.
From an intellectual perspective, this card might at first seem out of place. But looking more closely, I think it fits well with the last two. Emotions like sadness, disappointment, and self-pity need not overwhelm us. It’s where you place your mental focus that counts. If you want to dwell on sadness, that’s what you’ll feel. But you don’t have to.
And in the position of the Physical, the earth card, I pulled the 3 of Swords. Another unexpected card for its placement. In the picture, a person looks troubled, holding their face in their hands. A large tattoo on their left bicep shows the traditional RWS sorrow image, a heart struck through by 3 swords.
The message here feels similar to the one above. Emotionally painful thoughts can really slow us down, not just mentally, but physically as well. If issues surrounding loss, betrayal and/or sadness are getting in the way of physical well-being, this deck wants to help.
Very interesting …. at least for me, it looks like the All Hallow’s Tarot would especially like to be used for questions of the Heart. Even when they’re tough questions. Emotions are its specialty and it promises to look at them with compassion, clarity and no-nonsense good humour.
Sounds excellent! I can’t wait to play with it more. Thank you Robin, Storm and Leisa!! I really like it!