Witch Sister Tarot
Llewellyn Publishing (December 2023)
Reviewed by N. Richards
Witch Sister Tarot is an absolutely stunning “must have” for anyone interested in Scottish, Irish and Welsh folklore. The theme of Celtic folklore creates a natural dark and mysterious edge to the whole thing, and the legends, myths, history and otherworldly characters within are strange and beautiful and oh so intriguing! Allow yourself to be steeped in the ink black night of Celtic mysticism and reborn in its lambent misty loch dawnlight! Julia Jeffrey takes you on a journey!
This is her third deck to date, “Dream Fairies Inspirational Cards” and “Tarot of the Hidden Realm” being the other two titles. Both hint at a penchant for the ethereal realms. This deck feels personal and intimate in a profoundly spiritual sense as Julia states in the second chapter (First Steps) of the fully illustrated 240-page full-colour book that accompanies the 78 high quality cards.
“As I said in the introduction , the origins of the folklore, histories, and traditions that feed into the theme of this particular deck are Celtic, with a special focus on those from Scotland, mainly because this is my homeland. I hope to make my personal connection to the lore and the land useful.”
Personally I absolutely adore Scotland, and consider it my spiritual home. So it was genuinely magical and delectable to follow Julia on the journey of this deck through an ancient and haunted landscape, to discover the deepest truths of the human psyche. The illustrations are so rivetingly beautiful, not just the human characters but also animals , trees, stones, starlight and all manner of Animism, that feel like a homecoming to our divinity.
The Witch Sister Tarot is quite different in all the most artistic and best ways to your average Tarot kit. It’s darker, it’s deeper, it’s more than can be put into words. There is something raw and authentic here that you do not want to tame: a dark corner of Tarot which conjures the most interesting shadows to be danced with.
The readings are fascinating too. I delved into the “Charm Of Iron Spread.”. Five cards in a traditional horseshoe:
1 :The Child
2: The Fae
3: The Midwife
4: The Changeling
Shadow work? Much! But also a deeply nurturing spread that takes you inward, grounds you and elevates. Now what more could you ask for.
The cards and book come in a sturdy and well-designed magnetic clasp box. The back of the cards features a posy of thistles in soft pink. The cards are borderless and dainty, meaning not too thick or wide in your hand. The book is written in a poetic and scholarly way that feels like a folklore book in its own right, as well as a fully comprehensive guide to the art of Tarot. Within its pages you will learn about the mysterious horned half-Fae people called Glastig, also the Calleich and the infamous Morrigan, among others.
Learn about the magical ancient celtic art of “Saining” and Druidic rites, as well as stunning Gaelic words that unlock the imagination. The imagination being one of the more important and overlooked tools in any Occultist’s kit, and something that Julia certainly sparks in spades in this most welcome and fascinating of Tarot journeys.
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