I bought the Mystical Shaman Oracle last week and I thought I would do a review.
Published by Hay House. Art by Jena DellaGrottaglia. Creators: Alberto Villoldo, Collette Baron-Reid, and Marcela Lobos. 64 cards and a guidebook.
The box is housed in a slipcover, which protects the utterly fabulous box. The sturdy box has a magnetic closure. When you open the top, the bottom of the lid says "Before there was time, before there was language, there were the sacred symbols..." The guidebook rests on top of the deck. A heavy green ribbon allows you to pull the deck out of its nesting spot. The deck itself is in a sturdy lift box that also has a ribbon to safely remove the cards. The cards themselves are of sturdy stock, 3.5 X 5 inches.
Starting with the guidebook. I love this book. It talks about the double motion of an oracle - Each card represents something that is known, while simultaneously pointing the way toward something that is not known. They make it clear that this oracle is meant to help you made deicsions, clarify issues, and gain guidance rather than getting definitive answers. And that is what is so cool about these cards. Each card is presented on the left page, with messages described on the right page. Each card has three messages:
*The essence - the meaning of the symbol
*The Invitation - what gift Spirit is extending to you at this moment - a call to action (only read if the card is upright)
*The Medicine - the aspect of your life or relationships that needs to be brought into balance (read only if the card is reversed).
The artwork on the cards is stunning. They all have very earthy tones (somehow the artist manages this tone even when the card is blue and red and yellow). There is enough going on in the background and the image itself to allow the imagery to shift and change with each reading - different aspects of the image coming into focus as needed. I think this deck lends itself to intuitive readings.
So, test readings:
I asked the deck what it has to offer me and I drew card 12: The coyote. The essence of the card is the sacred trickster who provides growth and understanding by ensuring that things won't go as planned. Divine deception to free you from the shackles of that which doesn't serve you. The lessons are confusing but always for the highest good. The Invitation is about setting your attentions and turning them over to the Great Spirit. Great growth and understanding happens when Coyote calls.
I was concerned about the deception part, so I asked "what do you have to offer me that is the truth." I pulled card 20, flow. This talks about letting things flow as they should. Allow that. Your intentions are in motion, and now I must allow nature to run its course. And enjoy the ride.
Both of these cards are dead-on accurate with what is going on in my life right now. I believe the deck told me what I needed to know, not what I asked about.
So, I asked what the deck needed from me and I got the Owl. I think this one finally answered both of my questions. "The owl brings messages from the invisible world. She opens your ears so that you may hear the voices of the ancestors and you may acquire their wisdom and make it your own." And the Invitation is "Look around you, notice every details, and find the hidden messages brought to you... Do not shoot the messenger... Observe...without judgement. ...Do not be afraid of the truth as it will become your compass."
I love this deck and I plan to do a lot of readings with it to really explore its limits.
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