smith waite tarot

Speaking of the Rider-Waite...

…In the spirit of (belated) Women’s Day, why is it usually officially known as just the Rider-Waite, and on the rare occasion Smith is tagged on there, her name is always last?

She did, like, 75% of the work by herself. As far as I know, Waite pretty much just commissioned her and gave her an overall arch for the cards, and Rider was just the original publisher. All of the art and the specific invocations of the images were created by Smith herself.

So why is she either not mentioned at all, or mentioned last and least? Even on my tuckbox, she’s mentioned second, in smaller print, even though it doesn’t credit Waite with anything except the concept. So Waite wanting a new tarot deck is greater in the process of manifestation than Smith actually creating it?

Fuckin’ Edwardian frat boy ceremagi… I’m tempted to start calling it the Smith-Waite. That’s the order it should be in.

And Rider shouldn’t be there at all, let alone ahead of the actual artist. That’s like calling Terry Prachett’s books, “Discworld-Harper-Collins.” What the fuck.

This has been your daily reminder that the world’s most popular and universally beloved tarot deck was created almost entirely by a woman.

6. The Lovers

Arthur Waite calls this, “the card of human love, here exhibited as part of the way, the truth, and the life.” The angel Raphael, who occult practitioners connect to the super-conscious, watches over Adam and Eve in a sunny garden. Behind Adam is the Tree of Life, its twelve flames symbolizing the two zodiac signs, and behind Eve is the Tree of Knowledge, along with the serpent of the unconscious, and of desire and temptation. Between them are a single, phallic mountain and a stream, symbolizing the female. Waite is taking the traditional Garden of Eden symbolism and turning it on its head. He writes, “It is through her imputed lapse that man shall rise ultimately, and only by her can be complete himself.” In tsome views of the traditional Garden of Eden myth, Yahweh kicks his creation out of the garden in fear of their knowledge making them too much like god. But the hermetic view of the tarot is that its purpose is to make us one with the Divine. The Lovers is a celebration of opposite forces becoming one, and of the power of passionate love to bring us closer to the Divine. In Smith’s picture the man, traditionally the rational force, looks at the women, while the woman, the emotional force, looks at the angel. Rationality alone cannot bring us to oneness with the forces of the world. We need both mind and heart to see the angel. 

The Pagan Otherworld’s Lovers retains the Garden of Eden symbolism, but the scene appears to show Adam and Eve after the Fall. Eve is holding the apple and her face is turned towards the earth. She is covered with a sheet, without the innocent nakedness of Waite’s Lovers. Adam holds a wand on fire, connecting to the Tree of Life and to Prometheus bringing man fire, another act of defiance of the gods. This image reminds us of the less positive aspects of the card, the questioning it brings. Romance often brings complications, and lovers rarely remain as pure as they appear in the Waite card.
The Black Power Tarot’s L’Amoureux returns to the pre-Waite card’s image of a man trying to choose between two women. Tarot creators King Khan and Michael Eaton have depicted James Brown standing between Etta James and Irma Thomas. This traditional symbolism signified a choice between two different desires, usually a moral choice or a choice between something seen as boring but proper and something exciting but morally suspect. In the image one woman has light hair and the other dark, an obvious symbol of moral and immoral, outer and inner. In this sense, the dark is not always bad—not only are dark and light always needed in a blend, here the light may mean the conventional path and the dark the path you’re forging on your own. The meaning of “choice” also brings to mind the choices we make for love. Are they always positive? Most of us have made negative choices in order to keep love—changing who we are, doing things we don’t think are right. Think back to the Waite image, with the woman looking at the angel. The card is asking you to make the choices your intuition knows are correct, even if they mean turning away from your lover. 

The Hermetic Tarot brings in completely different symbolism in an image of Perseus saving Andromeda from the sea serpent Cetus. Titled Children of the Voice Divine, this card carries the Hebrew letter Zayin, Sword, and is on the Tree of Life path 17, which joins Binah (understanding) to Tiphareth (beauty). The Gemini symbol appears below the serpent’s head, and the Sagittarius bow and arrow sits at the top of the card. Gemini is most often linked to The Lovers, but here Godfrey Dowson also connects Sagittarius and the Temperance card. The Hebrew at the top right is the name of the angel Ambriel, who is associated with Gemini. Dowson lists inspiration and motivation as card meanings before love and beauty. 

Finally, we get some very literal symbolism on the Wooden Tarot’s Lovers. We have a blooming purple flower, reminiscent of the angel’s purple cloak from the Waite deck as well as a woman’s labia. A two-headed hummingbird is in front, perched on a green anatomical heart that’s oozing crimson blood drops. Two heads on one bird are two minds with one body, dualism resolved into one without losing individuality. The heart sprouts green shoots, and the blood drops glisten like jewels. This love is visceral and intense, but natural and positive in its passion.

Got ready too early. Talked to my cards. They said today was gonna. E a struggle

Gee thanks as if I didn’t know that already! But I did pull the transformation card from my Oracle of Oddities deck. So hey maybe not so bad.

Animal Spirit deck told me I was a rabbit…. scared af… like I didn’t already know it

My hands are twitching. My mother won’t stop talkin tryin to distract me but her words sound like the teach from peanuts wahmp wahmp wahmp

Am I high?

My card of the day: 7 of Pentacles. I should be enjoying the fruits of my labors today, a return on my investments, so to speak. I feel as if working with other decks has lead me to a better connection with the Smith-Waite tarot than I previously had. Nothing I’ve done has been a waste. Everything is settling and things look well. And the best part is, it is well deserved.


30 Day Tarot Questions

June 6: What was the first spread I ever learned?

I first learned the Celtic Cross spread that was in the lwb that came with my first deck. I don’t think it’s the best spread to start with, but oh well. Once I really started getting into Tarot, that lwb didn’t last very long.


image: (left to right) Mother of Swords from the Wild Unknown Tarot, Queen of Swords from the Rider-Waite-Smith Tarot, and Queen of Swords from the Modern Spellcaster’s Tarot

Tarot to the Courts: Queen of Swords

hosted & organized by @rosaofswords!

Last minute response to this week’s Tarot to the Court! Let’s look at the Queen of Swords.

First we have the Mother of Swords from the Wild Unknown, which depicts a white owl sitting on top of a black sword. Their eyes pierce forward. They are sharp, perceptive, knowledgeable, and full of criticism. Not necessarily mean criticism, but the type of criticism that comes from a critical eye to detail. Though by no means is gentleness a concern of this Mother.

Then we have the Queen of Swords from the Rider Waite Smith Tarot, which depicts a queen sitting on a throne embellished with butterflies. They are wearing a cloud cloak and a gold butterfly crown. There are clouds in the background, and the queen is holding a sword in one hand with their other hand outstretched as though they are welcoming someone. This queen is a quick thinker and also perceptive, but there’s an air of teamwork with them. Or rather, teamwork that happens below their command as queen. This is a queen that will transform ideas into actions, using meditation and critical thought.

Lastly we have the Queen of Swords from the Modern Spellcaster’s Tarot, which depicts a queen sitting on a black throne with red velvet seating. Both hands are on the sword’s handle, with the sword placed into the snowy ground. There is a bull in the foreground, sitting next to the queen. This queen is different from the others: they are alone atop of a mountain, overlooking goals. They suppress their frivolous desires for their more robust goals. While they are alone, they are confident in their abilities – especially their ability to think through any problem that comes their way.

We have a variety of Queens of Swords here. While all are perceptive and sharp, they go about it in different ways. The Mother of Swords is not concern with being gentle, whereas the Rider-Waite-Smith Queen most certainly is. The Modern Spellcaster’s Queen has no use for other people, but the Rider-Waite-Smith seems to be inviting help. They all are probably the most diverse group I’ve done for this challenge yet.

Anyway. That’s my thoughts on the Queen of Swords!

Day 23 Challenges

Self Love @oceanwildatelier : Why am I loved?

Because my intuition allows me to anticipate the needs of others and help them achieve contentment.

Shadow of May @thecrackedamethyst : What is my hatred doing to my energy levels?

Sure as shit ain’t helpin! - first thought when I drew this card. 

Real talk: my anger and hatred is blinding me from seeing the good things right in front of me.

#TarotMentors Day 1.

Now is the time to be hopeful that I can achieve what I need in terms of employment. I can heal my wounds and grow strong from them. Brighid is a Goddess of Inspiration after all. A Goddess of Healing, too. I can seek her out to become my own flame. I just need to be determined and willing to start again.

Featuring the Rider Waite Smith Tarot Deck.

Day 21 Challenges

Self Love @oceanwildatelier​ : how to grow via my best quality

Be firm, yet kind. Don’t let fear hold me back but make sure it’s known that I speak from love and with the hopes of protecting - with the right motivation.

Shadow of May @thecrackedamethyst​ : How do I show hate?

I’m a bitch. I probably won’t help you, and we may even come to blows (verbal or physical). My sister likes to call me the queen of passive aggressive.


image: (left to right) Daughter of Swords from the Wild Unknown Tarot, Page of Swords from the Rider Waite Smith Tarot, and Page of Swords from the Modern Spellcaster’s Tarot.

Tarot to the Courts: Page of Swords

hosted & organized by @rosaofswords!

Let’s take a look at some of my Pages of Swords!

The Daughter of Swords in the Wild Unknown is depicted as a white barn owl clutching a black sword. There is the colorful orbs behind the Daughter. This owl represents honest intentions and insightful observations. They are always watching, ready to learn. They have various orbs of curiosity dancing around them. But there is something unsure about this Daughter – they aren’t sure how to always proceed. There is a timidness here.

Page of Swords from the Rider Waite Smith depicts a person holding a sword – ready to swing, or ready to protect the sword. There are birds in the sky and the clouds are in motion. The person’s hair is blowing in the wind. There is restless energy in this card. The person is energetic and ready to move forward, but where is forward? 

Page of Swords from the Modern Spellcaster’s Tarot depicts a person smugly smiling while holding a sword as large as themselves. They are wearing novice robes, but they are confident and eager to prove themselves. Do they even know how to wield that sword? Or do they just like the impressive a large sword gives? They may be new to this, but they are willing to go forward regardless of that inexperience.

This cards hold very few similarities. Being a newbie is probably the only one I am getting at the moment. But each “newbie” is different. The Daughter of Swords from TWU is a timid kind of newbie, but nonetheless curious and eager to learn. Page of Swords from the RWS knows they are inexperience, but they are eager to go forward. Then Page of Swords from the MST either isn’t aware at how inexperienced they are or they don’t care – they are more than eager to start. 

Honestly, Page of Swords from the MST is probably one of my favorite court cards of any deck. Just look at that expression holding that sword. What’s not to love?

Anyways, that’s my thoughts on this card!

anonymous asked:

Hi! I was wondering if you could tell me the difference between, Angel Cards, Oracle Cards, Tarot etc...?

(View image in a separate tab or on my blog if it’s showing up blurry. Thanks, tumblr.)

All card divination systems are oracles, but not all oracles are tarot, or angel cards.

Oracle Cards: 

An umbrella term for a card-based divination system. They can have any number of cards in the deck, using any theme - or lack thereof.

Examples: Earthbound Oracle, Faerie’s Nature Oracle, Floret Oracle

Tarot Cards: 

An oracle that adheres to tarot symbolism, meanings, and format. 22 majors, 56 minors, courts, and aces. Significant variations across decks can exist.

Examples: The Idiosyncradeck, Rider-Waite Smith Tarot, Linestrider Tarot

Angel Cards: 

An oracle that uses angels for format, symbolism, and meaning. They have a reputation for being gentle divination systems.

Examples: Angel Blessings, Angel Oracle,and a large portion of Doreen Virtue’s decks

Theme and format are the only real differences between the three - so use whichever you are most drawn to!

#TarotMentors Day 10 featuring The Rider Waite Smith Tarot Deck.

Last day of The Star! Today the Star brings me Knight of Cups and Justice. This is a reminder that I can be charming while being firm, emotional while being detached.

… also these two cards scream “Colleen / @rosaofswords ”, and I think Brighid wants me to recognize how wonderful and amazing Colleen is as a friend, ally, and reader.

Thanks so much for doing this challenge Colleen! And for being my friend!