Straight out of the gate there is one major difference between this deck’s guidebook and the guidebooks of the others. It’s written for an audience that wants to work with deity or already does. Now, this doesn’t mean this is a requirement to use this deck, but rather that there’s quite a large chunk of content that is ritual-focused. I mentioned this in my condensed IG post about this deck that I think anyone who is Pagan, Wiccan, a Witch, anyone who connects with or wishes to invoke Goddesses is going to really get along well with this set.
There are some ritual basics outlined in the introductory section of the book like casting a circle and getting grounded. I really dig the emphasis on exposing the reader to different elements and styles of ritual and then encouraging them to make their own, to individualize their rituals in general. It’s like Roger Horne said in his Folk Witchcraft book (paraphrasing here), magick and ritual that is not personalized can be rather hollow.
This is not a book I would put into the hands of a young witch. And by ‘young’, I mean a few different sets of people. 1) Actual witchlets, pre-teens, and teens. 2) Witches of any age that are immature or reckless in their judgment. A nice way I usually say this is ‘young and impulsive’. And 3) those who are new to the path.
I put this warning of sorts here because depending on the reader’s culture, spiritual background, and other contextual factors, some of the suggestions and workings offered here could get some people into trouble. A little bit of knowledge can be dangerous.
For the record, I come from a Christian religious family, but have had folk Catholicism, Santeria, Hoodoo, Voodoo, and similar practices around me for much of my childhood and they have shaped my personal practice. Witchy Floridians – and I would even venture to say Spiritually Aware Floridians – have not only a very interesting relationship with the magick and spiritual systems from a variety of cultures, but we also have a way of reconciling them with the heavy Southern Christian roots that grow deep around us.
Last year, I purchased Doreen Virtue’s Goddess Guidance Oracle deck (GGO). Since then, I have done a few posts about it and occasionally a reading. It wasn’t long after that I made the decision to replace it with The Divine Feminine Oracle (DFO) deck by Meggan Watterson. While the cards I drew from the GGO resonated with me for those situations, I still felt put off by the guidebook. Even when I stopped bringing the book out altogether and started diving straight into my own research, there felt like this wall in between me and the deck.
The Back Story
I bought the GGO (and then decided to buy DFO) because for most of my life I haven’t had many positive female influences. The women who raised me were all powerful in certain ways, but very dysfunctional. Some were very much not who I should have looked up to as role models for how to function in relationships or even how to interact with my self. Through ancestor work and my love of learning about different cultures, I wanted a deck focused on feminine energy with deities, archetypes, and heroes that could help me grow in places that were neglected. Obviously, this is why I was so disappointed in how GGO handled introducing the strong female identities.
Had a really good couple of days. Hung out with some mates, played video games, and laughed for hours.
Resurrected my car photography account. I would like to eventually link it here, but I’m not certain that’s a good idea right now. See below.
Some excellent news on the family side of things. I got caught cleaning egg shells for Cascarilla powder by a relative. Wound up tripping and falling out of the broom closet. She was very encouraging and asked if she could learn with me.
I very gently reminded her that not everyone is accepting of a path like mine. She reiterated her support and seemed to understand the reference to my father and stepmum.
I’ve spent quite a bit of time the last few days picking up where I left off in terms of researching deity and different pantheons. It’s a really nice way to build trust in your intuition. Just kinda clicked through wiki and flipped through different bios reading, learning, seeing who resonates. Probably going to take the rest of the week before looking to see if there’s any major concentration, which could direct me to a particular tradition.
Felt the pull to break out my Goddess Guidance Oracle Deck to see who I should connect with to navigate through January.
Hawaiian Pele and Celtic Aine goddesses hopped out of a nicely flowing shuffle.
With Tutu Pele, the theme of fire and deeper creation through the surface of destruction mirrors a lot of the wands energy I’ve been getting in Tarot lately. A way for me to survive was going dormant. Now, I need to transition out of that and become passionate again, motivated, creative. There’s a lot inside that has hardened and needs to be cracked so that new and fresh can flow through for growth.
Regarding Aine, my Venus in Cancer loves her connection to water, healing, musicality, emotional expression, sensuality, wealth and abundance, and the moon. Her correspondences are air (Gemini & Aquarius power!), rabbits, and is depicted as a redhead! As gentle and caring as she is, there is also a ferocity present. Justice is a theme I get from reading about her. The bit about the rabbits really touched my heart for personal reasons.
I can be nurturing without putting myself in an unbalanced and unhealthy situation. I can harness the power of these gifts to both create and connect to ultimately gain my independence.
Vesta decided to come through on an ending shuffle and is more of an affirmation of the changes materialising within my family unit. I’m seeing great positive progress in certain areas. For that, I’m very grateful.
Things came together early and I was able to get some of the books on my Amazon Wishlist for my spiritual studies!
The first book on my reading list is The Spiral Dance by Starhawk and then Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner by Scott Cunningham. Wicca is not my first choice as a belief system. There are some core aspects to it (and how it came to be) that I’m not really keen on. However, I haven’t read extensively on it and I want to be as informed as possible. I’m also still looking for a really good primer on all the varieties of paganism and polytheism.
I find myself drawn to the Egyptian pantheon and the history of Egypt in general. That’s another area I’m exploring and discovering. There are some other traditions I’ve grown up around/adjacent to that speak to me and I want to learn more about them. While I did get a book on Yoruban religions, finding a 101 book focused specifically on Santeria is next on my to-do list.
Do I have to pick a religion or belief system in order to grow spiritually and be connected? No. But I was alienated for so long by the Catholic Church that I truly miss community worship and practise.
I’m a big fan of The Serpent Cast and I can’t wait to read Women Who Run with the Wolves by Dr. Clarissa Estes, which has been recommended a few times on their podcast.
I was studying Lakshmi earlier this afternoon as part of a goddess meditation and then happened to see all these posts just now on IG and Twitter. Right down to the red dress with golden thread, Beyonce radiated that energy of abundance and totally embodies that vibe. Even taking into consideration the Lemonade era and the personal growth she shared with us through her music, I think she’s a great woman to look to for channeling (perhaps unknowingly) the Lakshmi energy – material and spiritual wealth and liberation.
On a more personal note: the symbolism of Lakshmi and Vishnu in wedding ceremonies and festivities is so beautiful. The story of Sati/Parvati and Shiva is incredibly moving. I connect with those stories for the same reason Isis and Osiris resonate with me as well.
I woke up today and decided to do my first reading with the Goddess Guidance Oracle Deck. Scorpio Season and Venus in retrograde have taken the peaceful little bay I’ve created for myself and people I love and turned it into an insane whirlpool of feels. People are not just becoming unmoored, but they are straight up losing their shit.
I need some help. I need some guidance. I need some positive, powerful female forces. So, I asked to see which Goddesses from whose stories I could learn the most and then apply that knowledge to help things right now. This is who popped up:
I love this squad of awesome Goddesses. There’s an element of Duality in their nature in some of them that I really connect with as a Gemini. There’s also a strong theme of water energy present which my Venus in Cancer is drinking up.
My first oracle deck arrived. I picked the Goddess Guidance deck by Doreen Virtue.
Really beautiful set. The artwork is captivating. But I feel like some of the Goddesses could’ve had their respective ethnicities depicted more accurately. With Goddesses selected from cultures where colourism is (sadly) alive and well, I guess I expected more in the way of being sensitive and aware of that issue.
The cards are thick, but not too thick. Gilded. I did have to go through with the rather nice guidebook and double check that I had separated out all the cards that were stuck together.
Here is a breakdown of the different systems represented: Buddhist (1), Buddhist/Hindu/Shakti (2), Hindu (3), Celtic (13), Christian (2), Dahomean (1), Egyptian (5), Germanic (1), Gnostic (1), Greek (4), Hawaiian (1), Inuit (1), Mayan (1), Meso/Sumerian (1), Native American (1), Norse (1), Roman (3), Welsh (1), Yoruban (1).
Plenty of faces new to me to study. I support projects like these (cross cultural/beliefs) as it helps broaden a person’s knowledge and respect of others. I would love to see an expanded version that’s even more diverse.
When I first saw photos online of The Lovers Path Tarot by Kris Waldherr, I felt emotional. It was more than being moved. It was stronger, deeper. I love tarot decks and there are dozens I’d love to have. But there was this pull to have it. Like my heart ached for it. The booklet I will definitely use as the Major Arcana are connected to different couples.
This second photo gives examples of the High Priestess (Shahrazade and Shahriyar), the Empress (Cleopatra and Caesar), the Emperor (Arthur and Guinevere), the Hierophant (Romeo and Juliet), and the Lovers (Isis and Osiris) cards. There’s a lot of opportunity to do extra research into the history of the personalities of these couples and how they connect to the archetypes of their traditional Tarot card counterparts.
So, so beautiful. And they feel great in the hands.