I love and collect all kinds of cards. Playing cards of different eras and countries, oracle cards, interesting tarot decks – you name it. I don’t often use cards in sessions but I cut my teeth on oracle readings many years ago and I often use cards today as a tool when I’m teaching people how to tap in to their inner “intuition” For this purpose, the more non-traditional or unusual the deck, the better! Using something that doesn’t have a lot of established meaning, history or personal associations sometimes makes it easier (especially if you’re a beginner) to get your intuitive imagination flowing. Plus it can be fun to take a detour off the beaten path. (you can always learn the traditional meanings and systems as you go along, if you’re interested).
In this spirit, I’m going to revive posts about “weekly draws” and start off with one from my deck of German “Kipper” (Mystical Kipper) cards.
Take a look at this image
Before I describe what I see – you give it a go too. Chances are this is an unfamiliar image, language and card-deck for you. With this blank slate; take a good look at this card. Let yourself go into the scene and take note of the elements in the painting. Does any object or part of the card stand out to you or speak to you intuitively first? Does a story emerge in your mind about the characters in the image? What is happening and what are they doing? How does the picture make you feel? If you were to describe how these elements you notice in the picture describe something going on in your life, what would it be? There are no right or wrong answers, and sometimes your intuition will spur a completely different message than seems apparent on the card! There’s one recommendation in looking at the image: the card is ultimately about YOU in some way.
The name of this card is “A Journey” (Eine Reise) and it describes a journey or voyage. This could be an actual trip or even a move towards a new “destination” in your life – practically or on an inner level.
A man and his dog stand on the dock, with their suitcases, trunks and bed-rolls packed and ready to go. A glorious ship approaches and it’s almost time to set sail.
A few things stand out in the picture: The sky is warm but a transitional light casts a rosy glow over the proceedings; a sunset (or sunrise?) indicates that change, endings and new beginnings attend every great voyage. And yet, in this half light, there’s a lamp glowing and shining in the corner reminding us that a passage into darkness or the discomfort of being in a new situation is only temporary. A new journey will soon be “lighting the way” for new opportunity to learn, have fun and explore.
A cute Fliedermaus (bat) flaps in the picture next to the man. I love bats and imagine that maybe he wants to hitch a ride to an unknown destination with his own tiny bat-suitcase somewhere in the mix. But, since not everyone is as enamored as I am, the bat also represents our FEARS about any unknown destination in our lives. What if I get sea-sick? What if they don’t have anything in the galley for me to eat? What if something goes WRONG… what if…….
Thankfully, the bat is outsized by the enormous ship, the careful preparation and planning the figure obviously took to bring his best coat and hat and in carefully packing his bags. Fears must be set aside and the departure is underway. There will be a band playing and dancing on the promenade. Who knows, maybe Captain Stubing will be there to welcome them aboard.
The dog in the left hand corner is my favourite part because he suggests what dogs do BEST when it comes to new adventures and change: ::wag:: :: wag:: ::fwip:: :: fwip:: “I can’t wait to go! I’m so excited!” The positive pup reminds us of positive expectancy. Letting go of preconceived notions or dread about how things SHOULD go and just embracing the adventure and unpredictability of the journey (which is what makes the best vacations so much fun).
I got a loud intuitive ping (this time at least) around those suitcases. We spend so much time planning, perfecting and trying to anticipate everything that it’s possible to be too wrapped up in the preparation… unable to leave those measures aside and cast aside our desire to “protect ourselves” so that we can GET UNDERWAY and get into a new adventure. We get stuck in analysis and planning. Perhaps it’s a new job or project we’ve prepared for but don’t think we’re ready for… or perhaps it’s a relationship we’re trying to perfect before we think the journey can begin. This cards reminds us that sometimes you have to just take what you have in the suitcase and GO. Sure you might have left something out of your suitcase and maybe you didn’t plan for every eventuality but remember: there’s going to be a convenience store at your destination! It’s time to push off, and all your careful readiness has primed you for the next step. You’re ready to fly, sail, ride, glide and move!
Just remember your inner excited puppy.
About the deck: The Kipper cards or “Kipperkarten” are a German system of 36 oracle cards dating back to the 19th Century. They are very different from the tarot but are similar to, but unique from, the French “Lenormand” cards. Like them, they are designed to be read in groups and pairings or in a grand-tableaux using all the cards. (but, as I always tell my students, invent your OWN way to use them) This Deck is “Mystisches Kipperkarten/Mystical Kipper” by Regula Elizabeth Fiecher and as illustrated by the wonderful, whimsical Urban Trosch in beautiful egg-tempera paintings.