Guest post by JadeM / Jade Moore © 2018
To celebrate the upcoming release of her new deck, Jade has graced us with a lovely journey through the creation of her lastest deck, the Initiates Way. Currently on exhibition in The Old Fire Station in Carlisle, we would love to hear from any of our readers who have managed to visit!
After completing my first deck, The Soulscapes Tarot in 2013, I thought that I was done with creating Tarot cards, but in January 2016 an image appeared on my canvas that hinted otherwise. In much the same fashion as my first High Priestess for the Soulscapes Deck had arrived, she graced me with her presence on the canvas after a Meditation.
I had used one of my own guided meditations that I had written for our Spiritual Development group. We had worked on a monthly basis using one image a month with the Soulscapes Major Arcana over the course of two years and we had just finished one cycle of path working, or meditating, with each of the 22 Major Arcana and getting to know them in the inner world.
This High Priestess arrived with the statement “At this High Altar you shall serve”
Learning how to meditate successfully was the first hurdle for me as an Artist to access that space within that allows creation from the heart. I called this process Esoteric Art. There doesn’t need to be any specific outcome or idea of what will be created, it is simply engaging in the process which is the act of creating. Stimulating the source of inspiration within and expressing emotion through colour and technique.
It was at the beginning of my second journey through the Tarot that I realised I had strayed quite far from my path, distracted with life, and creating the second deck was for me a focussing, re-learning, and re-education which reacquainted me with the Major Arcana all over again for my own spiritual development, but with much more depth, and with the purpose of creating a ‘way’ or a definite path that could be followed by anyone who was interested in working with the Tarot in this way.
The High Priestess, Magician, Goddess of the Grove and the God of the Grove arrived in sequence at the beginning of 2016 and the rest of the deck emanated from those four Archetypes. Over the next year and a half I worked alone with the same meditations that we had used in our group and one by one the sequence of the fools journey appeared on the canvas. The last image of the Judgement was shown to me upon waking one morning as clear as looking at an actual gate. The shining path behind the gate was the one that I had strayed from and I knew that it was time now to get back to work!
The following is a brief synopses of each image in the journey:
The seeker after experience at the beginning of the spiritual journey and the decision whether or not to step into the cycle of initiation and transformation. This is the entry point into the Initiates Way.
The beginning of the process of gathering all the tools required for the journey of becoming.
The High Priestess
She becomes the bridge between the worlds, when we meet her we are given access to inner wisdom. She is the living embodiment of the goddess who resides within us all.
The Goddess of the Grove
Green woman / doorkeeper to the womens mysteries. She resides in Nature. She is Nature. She is the living soul of our planet and our Mother. High Queen.
The God of the Grove
Green Man or the Spirit of Nature. He also is Nature. He is a doorkeeper to great mysteries and timeless wisdom. High King.
(Deity is presented here as dualistic for within us all we have a hidden God and a hidden Goddess)
Duality and separation created within Humankind. There is a third aspect of consciousness to be recognised and that is thought. Without the mercurial glue which holds these dualistic natures together there can be no union within each seeker. There are deeper mysteries here awaiting discovery.
The stage in the spiritual journey where we create a light body in which to ascend \ descend between the worlds. An underworld journey is presented here for those ready for the quest.
Fortitude and Strength
The meeting of ones conscience, inner light, guidance from the gods / goddesses. The decisions and choices are many but will you choose a path for the benefit of all?
In solitude and silence retreat within the hermits cave and listen to your inner voice. Can you hear it?
The Wheel of Fortune
The four fixed signs of the zodiac and the four constellations representing these are revolving at this gateway to creation. The wheel is turning. For good or ill, all actions come from their creator.
Sekhmet restores MAAT
Judgement in the Hall. The heart weighed against the feather and the deeds of a lifetime are weighed out against the soul. Karma.
Hanged / Drowned Man
Odin / Christ
Descent into the world of shadows and illusions. Will you drown, sink or swim?
Acceptance of the need for a sacrifice of something to progress on the Initiates journey.
Death / Transformation
The great healer, the anaesthetist or the death sleep. Choosing to willingly go through the gates of death to let go of all that is no longer required on the journey. Change and transformation. Conscious living with an acceptance of death as an inevitability in life.
Walking ones own path of true destiny. Rebirth from within the cauldron of Cerridwen, the Awen of the Druids. Inspiration. Performing alchemy of the soul.
Devil / Pan / Hermes
Lord of Earth and the way-finder. The spirit of Nature. Matter. Overcoming temptations and obsessions.
The Ivory Tower
From within the ivory tower the illumination of the self brings clarity. Illusions are shattered. Nothing can ever be the same. From the ruins and the rubble of the fallen tower it is now time to rebuild on firm foundations.
The Star (Sothis)
Hope. Inspiration. Let the myths and legends of the stars guide your way. Venus the Morning and Evening Star. The Star of Isis.
The solitary path through illusion. Are you ready to walk through the darkest corners of your mind and tread the waters of the unconscious? Dreaming. Sleeping. Waking. Are you the dreamer or is the dream dreaming itself through you?
A whole personality shines like the sun. The journey through the Astrological signs in the inner worlds brings them to life. Fully aware. Fully conscious. Integrated into the personality.
Behold the gates to the high road, the shining path that lies ahead. Awakening from a dead life devoid of meaning or purpose, and being reborn into ones destiny. Alive and living each moment as it comes with no worry for the past or the future.
The ability to travel between the higher, middle and lower realms as easily as choosing to open and stepping through a door. Walking the fire road.
You can view the sequence of images here: Initiates Way featuring “Raven Cries”
Creation of the Court images required a slightly different method, as did the creation of the Wands, Swords, Cups and Discs. These were intentionally aligned with the four seasons and at the same time as creating the Majors I painted each source image (ace) at the beginning of each season, then the corresponding court images, and then the remaining 2 – 10 of each suit.
The biggest lesson I have learned is that to use Tarot effectively one much have a foot in both worlds and be able to function in both simultaneously, maintaining balance at all times. For no sooner have you neglected something you should have been doing in favour of something you believed was the right thing to do… the world comes crashing down around your ears as reality bites!
Right at the end of the creation process for the Initiates Way has been to gather all of the paintings together and put them out on show for anyone who would like to see the journey for themselves. The final image for the deck is underway now is closing the cycle of creation and opening the channel of teaching. The Heirophant – High Priest image of my inner teacher has come forward now and is ready to lead the way.
If you would like to try out the Guided Meditations for yourself you can Subscribe here:
Jade is a Glasgow born Cumbrian settled Esoteric Artist and Musician & Performance Artist (singer songwriter), and a tarot consultant with over 25 years experience. Shamanic Healer & Reiki Master.
‘Esoteric Art’ means Art that comes from within.
Please visit the blog page if you would like to see more www.neter.co.uk