Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Card-Reading Traditions

©C. McCracken & W. Worthington
Whether you've jumped here from the beautiful and wise Tierney Sadler, or found your way here another way, I bid you welcome to another Tarot Blog Hop.  And if you should lose your way at any point, you can find the Master List here.

The question our wonderful wrangler Arwen set us this time round was: What traditions are important to you in how you read Tarot?  I'll adapt it to reading Lenormand cards, though ;)

It may surprise some people to hear me say that tradition is important to me.  Admittedly, the Celtic Lenormand has non-traditional aspects: extra cards and a 'theme'.  And yet, the fundamental structure, and the basic way of reading the cards are totally traditional, while the meanings and keywords simply expand on the traditional Lenormand perspective, rather than throwing it out the window.  The images, though, are admittedly very different to what is found on 19th century cards...

What it comes down to is that being wedded to a single tradition does not suit me.  In this, as in many things, an integrative rather than a purist approach is my preferred route.  So, this deck honours the Lenormand tradition, but also honours pagan traditions.  And the melding of those two different approaches mean the deck expands on tradition, rather than following it absolutely.

©C. McCracken & W. Worthington
For example, today is Beltane or May Day.  To represent this spoke on the Wheel of the Year, I chose the card traditionally called Bouquet or, as in this case, Flowers.  This is no bouquet plucked by a florist and arranged to give as a gift to a pretty girl one is wooing.  No, this is the gift that nature offers us every year when flowers blossom anew after the winter snows.  The meanings of beauty and a gift remain, but the perspective is somewhat different, and the connection to Beltane is something that is not a traditional Lenormand association.  Yet, as the saying goes: April showers bring May flowers.  This card was, for me, the obvious choice to meld these two traditions - Lenormand and a nature-based spirituality.

So, to answer the question asked, it is important to me to follow the semantic approach of Lenormand reading.  I don't read Lenormand cards the way I read tarot cards.  I allow my intuition to be sparked by the range of keywords, rather than by particular elements in the image.  And those keywords start from the traditional basics, expanding out in somewhat different directions because when I read my focus is almost always on personal development, psychology and spirituality.  That is what I work with on a daily basis, so that is what I bring to my readings. 

Yet, each reader will have their own keywords, and so your words don't have to be the same as mine.  Another tradition I follow is that of honouring the person doing the reading: if you read with these cards, then your interpretation is the one that counts!  And I hope you will read with these cards... :)

In the meantime, enjoy the rest of the blog hop.  Next stop is The Cauldron Born, for some more purely pagan wisdom and tradition.

21 comments:

  1. That's a lovely tradition there at the last...that you honor the person doing the reading. Nicely put, Chloe.

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    1. Thanks, Arwen. That one's pretty important to me. We each get messages from the cards, and I believe we get the message we need in the moment, and honour that :)

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  2. What a lovely deck - I have never worked with the Lenormand, but I am really intrigued!

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    1. Ooh, there's lots to delight in the world of Lenormand, Lynda. Hope you'll give it a try some time!

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  3. The Lenormand sounds wonderful! :)

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    1. It taps into a slightly different aspect of our intuition, but for me the basics are still the same - as you said, John, empowerment and respect for the client!

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  4. I haven't been over here in a while, but these cards are looking absolutely wonderful!!

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    1. Thanks, PLN! I'm delighted with how Will has been bringing my vision to life :)

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  5. Very true, the reader's interpretation is what counts, because each card can mean something different to another person. When you place the cards in place, spirit is working through the reader and giving messages to the reader to be interpreted.

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    1. Yes, that's exactly it, Cher - honouring the message and its carrier :)

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    1. Thanks, Joanna! I love the riotous beauty of flowers :)

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  7. The cards are coming together nicely. I think you've got a good idea here; you know the imagery is going to be a stretch for the Lenormand's citified 19th-century imagery tradition, but you are maintaining the tradition of the style of using and reading the cards nonetheless. I am intrigued to see how this combination turns out.

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    1. As you pointed out, Joanne, each deck has its own tradition. This will still have the underlying Lenormandness, with a different layering of (hi)stories. It may not be everyone's cup of tea - it's as far from citified as you can get - but it will be a readable Lenormand :)

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  8. I love this image of the flowers - much more appealing than the more traditional bouquet (does that make me a non-traditionalist?!). Really looking forward to seeing the finished deck.

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    1. Yep, I'd say that makes you a non-traditionalist ;) But you're in good company - Ciro's deck was quite non-traditional, too :D And yes, I can't wait to have a prototype in my hands - hopefully before the month is out!!

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  9. oh hell, where did my comment go?!

    I'd written quite a lot and now can't exactly remember what I wrote! Something about applauding the evolution of new traditions from the old ones so that they stay relevant and flexible.....such as new versions of old decks. And can't wait to get my paws on this one as it's gorgeous!

    Ali x

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    1. Well, given what a fan you are of Will's it's no wonder you like it ;) Also like what you say about staying relevant and flexible - I'm all about flexible!
      Cxx

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  10. Great post, great deck,and great new word: Lenormandness! Awesome. And I think the Flowers card is my favourite one so far :D

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    1. Glad you like the Flowers, Carla :) And I hadn't realised I'd coined a word, still, at least it's shorter than saying Lenormand structure and principles...
      Cx

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  11. Sounds like it's about time to get another deck to add to my compendium....love the things that are different about the Lenormand. Starting to look one up...

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