The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Tarot

Tarot decks are wonderful, and versatile. They lend themselves to all sorts of reinvention, for better or worse. Today’s deck is for the better because it takes the mythic, fantasy setting of “The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim” (an insanely popular video game) and meshes it nicely with the mythic, traditional tarot.

“The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Tarot Deck and Guidebook” was written by Tori Schafer, who is a writer and narrative designer for video games, and has worked on titles such as “Elder Scrolls Online” and has practiced tarot since childhood. The tarot and “Skyrim” enthusiast could not ask for a better creator. Schafer’s obvious knowledge of tarot and attention to the source material provided by “Skyrim” has created a deck that requires little acclimation for the experienced tarot reader. The Minor Arcana Suits of Wands, Coins, Swords, and Cups become Spells, Lockpicks, Arms, and Voice and the Major Arcana keep traditional names while being represented by a who’s who of Skyrim.

Obviously, it is important for a tarot deck such as this to be well thought out, but if the artwork doesn’t do justice to the game, and the grand tradition of excellent tarot artwork, the deck is worthless. Fortunately, it was Erika Hollice’s artwork that first caught my eye, before I even realized I was looking at a deck based on a game I personally love. Hollice’s art deco, graphic, fantasy style translates wonderfully to the card. The only complaint that I have is in Insight Editions attempt to have the cards be matte, the cards tend to stick together, making for difficult shuffling.

“The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Tarot” by Tori Schafer and Erika Hollice is an excellent example of how wonderful a themed tarot deck can be.

You can learn more here.

Get your own copy here. (This is an affiliate link to my Bookshop, which supports independent bookstores throughout the United States. If you use this link to purchase the book, I will make a small commission at no additional cost to you.)

If you’re a Skyrim fan, like myself, I can’t help but bring these two very different interpretations of the dragon Alduin. One noble in gold……


You can get your own here. (This is an affiliate link to Entertainment Earth. If you make a purchase using this link, I make a small commission at no additional cost to you.)

The other an adorable rubber ducky.


Which you can get here.(This is an affiliate link to Entertainment Earth. If you make a purchase using this link, I make a small commission at no additional cost to you.)

Do you enjoy The Magical Buffet? Considering supporting The Magical Buffet on Patreon! For only $5 a month you’ll receive monthly tarot/oracle forecasts, classes, and behind the scenes updates! Https://www.patreon.com/magicalbuffet

Cultivating Grace

I am fortunate that I get offered the opportunity to review lots of books and decks. If you’re part of my Patreon, you’ve seen my reasoning behind some of the items I’ve chosen to review. When I was offered a copy of the deck “Cultivating Grace: Access Inner Peace, Clarity, and Joy on Your Spiritual Path” by Miranda Macpherson I accepted, and I could not tell you why. It didn’t look awful, but it also didn’t seem like something I would enjoy, and yet, I wanted to review it. I’m glad I did.

“Cultivating Grace” is a remarkably well-thought-out deck for self-reflection and discovery. The 64-card deck is divided into 4 categories of cards: Grounding in Grace, Receiving Blessings of Grace, Transforming Power of Grace, and Embodying Grace. Macpherson considers grace a nondenominational direct experience of the Divine, a felt experience of the Sacred, that is the practical key to gaining traction on your spiritual path and finding true fulfillment.

Each card features beautiful art by Anna Kuptsova and ideas to reflect on and practice. Macpherson’s appreciation of classic spiritual thought is obvious when reading the accompanying guidebook, and unlike some decks I highly recommend reading the guidebook as it offers much more than just card descriptions. Also, I just need to mention, you get the beautiful 64-card deck, which comes in a lovely fabric bag and a full-color 176-page guidebook, all in a compact, sturdy box for the suggested retail price of $18.99. That’s just shockingly reasonable.

“Cultivating Grace” by Miranda Macpherson is scheduled to come out in September, but you can preorder it now.

You can learn more here.

Get your own copy here. (This is an affiliate link to my Bookshop, which supports independent bookstores throughout the United States. If you use this link to purchase the book, I will make a small commission at no additional cost to you.)

Do you enjoy The Magical Buffet? Considering supporting The Magical Buffet on Patreon! For only $5 a month you’ll receive monthly tarot/oracle forecasts, classes, and behind the scenes updates! Https://www.patreon.com/magicalbuffet

10 Questions with Liz Dean

Today we’re talking about all things tarot with Liz Dean, author of over 20 books focusing on tarot and spirituality and the new book “Tarot By Numbers: Learn the Codes that Unlock the Meaning of the Cards.”

1. What first drew you to tarot?

As a child, I was fascinated by portrayals of tarot and tarot readings on television – UK shows such as Roald Dahl’s Tales of the Unexpected, with its opening credits showing a carousel of tarot cards, and of course Solitaire in the Bond film Live and Let Die. I loved the cards’ imagery without understanding them – so it was very much an intuitive pull for me.

2. Your latest book, “Tarot by Numbers” discusses using the number of the card as a jumping off point to doing a reading. When did you realize this was a viable way to use the tarot?

I began to experience number as symbol around ten years or so ago (I’ve been reading cards for almost 35 years); and more intensely, over the past three years. It then struck me that, in tarot teaching, this is a way for students to access the whole deck, rather than only relate the cards’ numbers to, say, timescales for future events. Numbers have particular energies, and like images, act as portals to other ways of seeing. Numbers make understanding tarot so accessible, because we all have an innate relationship with certain numbers (unlucky 13, lucky 7); that’s the starting point.

3. It seems like readers are continually finding new ways to use and/or interpret tarot cards. Do you think we’ll ever run out of tarot discoveries?

Tarot is always relevant to the times in which we live because the cards show archetypes that are a part of our human experience. We interpret these archetypes – the Fool, Empress (mother), Hermit (seeker, monk), for example, in the language of our times. So the potential is endless.

4. How do you feel about oracle decks and other non-tarot style decks?

I welcome all means of self-discovery. Often, I find that tarot students begin with oracle decks and progress to tarot. At times I work with both – pulling an oracle card at the end of a tarot reading can bring through a closing nugget of wisdom.

5. You’re British and reside in the U.K. Do you find there is a difference in the way Americans approach tarot compared to the British?

I don’t feel that there is a difference – only in pronunciation! (West coast, ‘ta-row’, East Coast, ‘tarot’). I do love the US tarot community – I’ve met so many passionate and erudite readers at Reader’s Studio in New York, the world’s largest tarot gathering.

6. What are a few of your favorite tarot decks, and why?

Of course, I love my Game of Thrones Tarot, which I co-created with artist Craig Coss. Then there’s Janine Worthington’s In Between Tarot; Modern Witch Tarot from Lisa Sterle, and the Rider Waite Smith.

7. What is your best advice to someone who wants to start learning how to read tarot?

Find a deck you love. You need to adore the colour, the imagery, and even the box artwork. Buy a deck you naturally want to touch. When you have the right deck, invest in a tarot journal. Begin reading for yourself and record your readings. You’ll get to see which cards recur for you and investigate them more deeply. Do a daily three-card reading; this builds a relationship between you and your cards. Take your time and try not to get overwhelmed with YouTube tutorials or too many tarot books.

And – when you read cards, resist the temptation to check the card’s meaning in the book. Instead, go with how the card makes you feel – look at the colour, the number, the symbols and landscapes: images stimulate imagination, intuition and creativity. Speak your impressions aloud when you’re on your own, as this energizes your reading. Tarot is a live practice, so read in the moment and don’t worry that you should know a card’s meaning. Take the Fool’s leap of faith!

8. Are there any misconceptions about tarot that you’d like to take a moment here to address?

First, Tarot has nothing to do with evil or negative ideas of the occult – the earliest cards date to the Renaissance and have Christian imagery (and these are the archetypes used in many decks today). Second, your future is not set. You have free will; tarot helps you see the influences around you, and how those influences might unfold given present circumstances. With this awareness, you become better placed to make decisions, understand relationships, communicate effectively and follow your passion.

9. What’s next? Do you have any upcoming projects that my readers should be aware of?

Tarot by Numbers is my twenty-second book, so I’ll be having a lie down with a gin and tonic. But watch this space…

10. Parting shot! Ask us at The Magical Buffet any one question.

Have you ever seen a ghost?

Not yet.

About Liz Dean:
Liz Dean (London, England) is a professional tarot reader and Angelic Reiki™ Healer at Psychic Sisters in Selfridges, London. A best-selling tarot author, Liz had studied divination for over 20 years. Liz is the author of “The Golden Tarot” (over 300,000 sold worldwide), “The Ultimate Guide to Tarot”, “The Ultimate Guide to Tarot Spreads”, “The Victorian Steampunk Tarot”, “Fairy Tale Fortune Cards”, “44 Ways to Talk to Your Angels”, “The Tarot Companion”, “The Divination Handbook”, and “Tarot Made Simple”. Liz is also one of the “Tarot Masters” included in Kim Arnold’s eponymous collection of 38 essays. In addition, she is a former co-editor of the UK’s leading spiritual magazine, “Kindred Spirit” (2011–2013), and an award-winning poet. Find Liz online at https://lizdean.info/.

You can learn more here.

Get your own copy here. (This is an affiliate link to my Bookshop, which supports independent bookstores throughout the United States. If you use this link to purchase the book, I will make a small commission at no additional cost to you.)

Do you enjoy The Magical Buffet? Considering supporting The Magical Buffet on Patreon! For only $5 a month you’ll receive monthly tarot/oracle forecasts, classes, and behind the scenes updates! Https://www.patreon.com/magicalbuffet

Tarot for Real Life

How does he do it? Seriously, how does Jack Chanek pull it off? You may remember how much I adored his previous book, “Qabalah for Wiccans”, which in all honesty should have been titled “Qabalah for Everyone” because it was the first book on Qabalah that really clicked for me, and would work for anyone, Wiccan or otherwise. Well, he back with “Tarot for Real Life: Use the Cards to Find Answers to Everyday Questions,” and yes, he did it again.

Now, when it comes to tarot, I know a thing or two. Not to toot my own horn, but I do some halfway decent monthly single card tarot forecasts on my Patreon. Yet, there is no denying that Chanek’s ability to breakdown complex systems and present them in an accessible order is perfect for tarot. Much like when reading “Qabalah for Wiccans,” I found myself giddy with excitement in achieving better understanding. And with the book’s emphasis on real life applications, “Tarot for Real Life” really IS tarot for real life!

“Tarot for Real Life” by Jack Chanek is an absolute must for anyone starting on the path of tarot reading, but I think even an experienced tarot reader can find something to take away from this book.

You can learn more here.

Get your own copy here. (This is an affiliate link to my Bookshop, which supports independent bookstores throughout the United States. If you use this link to purchase the book, I will make a small commission at no additional cost to you.)

Do you enjoy The Magical Buffet? Considering supporting The Magical Buffet on Patreon! For only $5 a month you’ll receive monthly tarot/oracle forecasts, classes, and behind the scenes updates! Https://www.patreon.com/magicalbuffet

Soul Helper Oracle

The oracle deck we’re looking at today is wonderful, but also prompted some design questions on my part. Let’s look at the “Soul Helper Oracle” by Christine Arana Fader and illustrated by Elena Dudina. If Fader’s name sounds familiar it’s because you’ve seen it before on The Magical Buffet when I held “The Battle of the Dragon Oracle Decks.” She was behind the “Dragon Wisdom” deck that was featured in that article. It was why I wanted to take a peek at Fader’s latest work with a different artist.

The illustrations for the “Soul Helper Oracle” are enchanting. I was unfamiliar with artist Elena Dudina but her rendering of environments is magical. Normally, I’m more drawn to art where a person is the centerpiece. It’s rare that my favorite cards in a deck are ones where the people are just a small part of the whole.

The deck itself is 43 cards and the guidebook offers a 21-day cycle of working with the theme of a card to explore yourself. Each card has four companions to support your work with the message of each card: a crystal, a spirit animal, a number, and a plant essence. I love how the deck is geared towards self-discovery and that Fader offers ideas to support your work. The only question I have, is with such clear ideas in mind, and a capable illustrator rendering the cards, couldn’t the crystal, spirit animal, number, and plant be incorporated into the art of each card? (Each card has a number, some have the animal, some have crystal, and some have the plant.) As it is, you need to always refer to the guidebook to see those.

Aside from that, the “Soul Helper Oracle” is a great deck for anyone looking for an oracle with beautiful artwork and is geared for exploration of the self.

You can learn more here.

Interested in getting your own copy of the “Soul Helper Oracle?” Well, I have great news for you! Inner Traditions accidentally sent me two copies of the deck, so I’m giving one away! As per usual, I’ll be using Rafflecopter for the giveaway. Residents of the United States that are 18 years of age or older can enter. Giveaway ends at 11:59pm on 04/29/2022.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Do you enjoy The Magical Buffet? Considering supporting The Magical Buffet on Patreon! For only $5 a month you’ll receive monthly tarot/oracle forecasts, classes, and behind the scenes updates! Https://www.patreon.com/magicalbuffet

Soul Cats Tarot

I had to say yes when offered the opportunity to review “Soul Cats Tarot” by Leeza Robertson with art by Adam Oehlers. I’m good friends with Deborah Blake, an author well known for her affection for cats. If she found out I had the opportunity to review a cat-based tarot deck and passed, well, she wouldn’t be angry, just disappointed. And here we are….

“Soul Cats Tarot” is a traditional tarot told through the whimsical and sometimes treacherous world of cats. The major arcana features mixed breed cats, whereas the minor arcana are specific breeds: Cups are Bengal, Wands are Bombay, Swords are Siamese, and Pentacles are Maine Coon. And I would be remiss if at this point I didn’t mention the fabulous artwork done by Adam Oehlers. I wasn’t familiar with his work before, but I’ll be on the lookout for it in the future.

Leeza Robertson’s cat inspiration and Adam Oehlers artwork have created an evocative deck that should resonate with many tarot fans.

You can learn more here.

Get your own copy here. (This is an affiliate link to my Bookshop, which supports independent bookstores throughout the United States. If you use this link to purchase the book, I will make a small commission at no additional cost to you.)

Do you enjoy The Magical Buffet? Considering supporting The Magical Buffet on Patreon! For only $5 a month you’ll receive monthly tarot/oracle forecasts, classes, and behind the scenes updates! https://www.patreon.com/magicalbuffet

The Watkins Tarot Handbook

There are plenty of book out there devoted to tarot. Some our devoted to using tarot to divine the future, and many more discuss using the tarot as a tool for self-reflection. When I was offered the opportunity to review “The Watkins Tarot Handbook: A Practical System of Self-Discovery” by Naomi Ozaniec, I was expecting a vaguely new age, self-help book that utilized tarot. What I got was a jaw dropping, initiatory experience.

Ozaniec’s reading of tarot is that, “The language of the Tarot is that of the symbol in many forms: numerical, mythical, elemental, zodiacal, alchemical and Hermetic,” and that it’s, “a visual representation of the Western Esoteric Tradition.” This certainly isn’t the first book about tarot that I’ve seen make these observations, however “The Watkins Tarot Handbook” exceeds expectations when it comes to proving its point. Sure, like many books about tarot, you’ll find images of classic tarot cards, but in this book, you’ll also see the Wheel of Correspondences (as produced by Dolores Ashcroft-Nowicki), Strephon Kaplan Williams model of The Seven Archetypes, a table of Hebrew letters, the Tree of Life, the Psychosynthesis Egg, and so much more. Ozaniec’s version of tarot is a full-on initiation in the Western magical traditions.

“The Watkins Tarot Handbook” by Naomi Ozaniec is an amazing resource for any interested in anything occult. This book teaches you tarot and just so much more.

You can learn more here.

Get your copy here. <---This is an affiliate link to my Bookshop, which supports independent bookstores throughout the United States. If you use this link to purchase the book, I will make a small commission at no additional cost to you.

Do you enjoy The Magical Buffet? Considering supporting The Magical Buffet on Patreon! For only $5 a month you’ll receive monthly tarot/oracle forecasts, classes, and behind the scenes updates! https://www.patreon.com/magicalbuffet

Soulflower Plant Spirit Oracle

Today we have a truly special oracle deck to discuss, the “Soulflower Plant Spirit Oracle” by Lisa Estabrook. In the oracle’s accompanying guide book Estabrook says, “The ‘Soulflower Plant Spirit Oracle’ is a very simple daily self-care, self-empowerment tool that will help support your own spiritual journey and reawaken or strengthen your connection to the earth that supports us all.” Pretty big ask from a “very simple” tool.

I’m happy to say that Estabrook’s oracle does an amazing job creating this tool. The “Soulflower Plant Spirit Oracle” is a 44-card featuring Estabrook’s own, beautiful art. Each card has its own information on it. That said, it comes with a 173-page guidebook that explains the deck’s origin and quite poetically take you through some exercises and discussion of plant spirits. Estabrook suggests a single card draw a day as one of the best ways to use the deck and I absolutely agree. I’m quite the fan of the single card draw for most decks and readings.

With its ties to the earth, desire to prompt self-exploration, and of course, lovely art, Lisa Estabrook’s “Soulflower Plant Spirit Oracle” is a must own for those looking pursue those interests.

You can learn more here.

Do you enjoy The Magical Buffet? Considering supporting The Magical Buffet on Patreon! For only $5 a month you’ll receive monthly tarot/oracle forecasts, classes, and behind the scenes updates! https://www.patreon.com/magicalbuffet

Divination

There are loads of different ways to practice divination. I should know, I profiled several for my Patrons on Patreon. (shameless plug for my Patreon) However, for evidence to this fact you need to look no further than “In Focus: Divination: Your Personal Guide” by Steven Bright. Bright is a full-time tarot reader that has created a tarot deck, oracle deck, and a kipper deck. He’s written a book about tarot and one about deck design. I’m not saying Bright is the only person who could write this type of book, but he’s certainly more than qualified.

This book, “Divination: Your Personal Guide,” offers an amazing variety of information about styles of divination: Lenormand cards, Kipper cards, playing cards, Elder Futhark Runes, Witches’ Runes, casting charms, diving with crystals, reading colors, reading buttons, reading tea leaves, reading flowers, reading shells, the I Ching, and dice divination. Several of these I hadn’t even considered as divination methods! And Bright does an excellent job of providing enough information that you can start experimenting with the types of divinations outlined in the book immediately. “Divination” is helpfully illustrated and includes an instructional poster.

“Divination: Your Personal Guide” by Steven Bright is a wellspring of inspiration for anyone interested in divination.

You can learn more here.

Shop your local indie bookstore <---This is an affiliate link to IndieBound, which supports independent bookstores throughout the United States. If you use this link to purchase the book, I will make a small commission at no additional cost to you.

Do you enjoy The Magical Buffet? Considering supporting The Magical Buffet on Patreon! For only $5 a month you’ll receive monthly tarot/oracle forecasts, classes, and behind the scenes updates! https://www.patreon.com/magicalbuffet

Winterseer Animal Oracle

Why are animals such a popular subject for tarot and oracle decks? The most obvious reason is that animals are adorable, however Siolo Thompson, author and artist of “Winterseer Animal Oracle”, points out that animals have always been used as archetypes and personifications of the gods. Siolo Thompson took inspiration from Celtic, druid, and Norse belief systems to create the 54 card “Winter Seer Animal Oracle.” Thompson is a wonderful artist and illustrated all the cards herself. The “Winterseer Animal Companion” book is beautifully written and full of personal reflections and observations as well as folklore and legends.

According to Thompson, “The primary job of the oracle is to offer insights and focal points to meditate on or to consider, rather than predict the future or reveal your ‘destiny.’” She suggests a three-card spread, or using the deck in addition to a traditional tarot reading. The options are really only limited by your imagination.

The “Winterseer Animal Oracle” is a useful addition to anyone’s collection.

You can learn more here.

This is an affiliate widget for my Bookshop, which supports independent bookstores throughout the United States. If you use this link to purchase a book, I will make a small commission at no additional cost to you.

Do you enjoy The Magical Buffet? Considering supporting The Magical Buffet on Patreon! For only $5 a month you’ll receive monthly tarot/oracle forecasts, classes, and behind the scenes updates! https://www.patreon.com/magicalbuffet