Dark Goddess Tarot Companion
The Dark Goddess Tarot Companion is exactly as titled - the companion book to the wonderful deck by Ellen Lorenzi-Prince. The 172 page book has instructions for working with the energies of each card and several unique tarot spreads.
By Ellen Lorenzi-Prince
Book - 172 pages - Self Published
Review by Bonnie Cehovet
The Dark Goddess Tarot is based, quite literally, on dark goddesses … goddesses who, as Ellen notes in her introduction, represent aspects of life that people may be uncomfortable with, such as the powers of age and death, sex and sovereignty, ferocity and judgment, suffering and shadow, magic, mystery, and transformation. To be worked with to the depths that they were created for, there needed to be a companion book … a guide into this vast expanse of feminine wisdom. And so it shall be … and so it is. A 172 page book of wonders, written by Ellen Lorenzi-Prince as only she can write … an intuitive guide into some of the strongest powers that you will ever encounter!
A bit of background about the deck: It follows a traditional structure, elemental: Fire, Water, Air, and Earth. In choosing goddesses for each suit, attention was paid to elemental affinity, as well as the meaning of the card. The court cards are renamed to represent fearsome female powers: Amazon (fierce and independent), Siren (sexuality), Witch (practitioner of magic), and Hag (one who walks with death). I love that the deck is NOT meant to be used with reversals! There are specific instructions for working with the energies of each card … to show respect, to honor the energy, and to protect one’s self. Probably the best advice … to suspend ones disbelief. In the companion book, each card is dedicated to someone in Ellen’s life that for her has a connection to that energy.
Each Major Arcana card is presented with a black and white photo, who the card is dedicated to, the card name and number, the associated goddess, what the goddess represents, and what happens when she appears in a reading. For instance … the Fool is dedicated to Mary Greer. The mythological figure represented is the Sheela Na Gig, the British Spirit of Warning and Invitation. When this card appears in a reading, the Seeker is advised to open their eyes, to not see only what they already know, to release expectation and judgment, and to allow wisdom to come in unexpected ways.
The introduction to the Minor Arcana give a short summation of the elemental nature of the suits, and a listing of the goddesses for each suit. Each card is presented with a black and white photo, who the card is dedicated to, the suit and card number (title and card number for the court cards), the associated goddess, what the goddess represents, and what happens when she appears in a reading.
At the end of the book are several Dark Goddess Tarot Spreads: a two card Substance and Shadow spread, a three card What, Why, and How spread, a two card Dark Goddess spread (thanks to James Wells), and a five card Goddess Be With You spread. At the end of the book we find the Dark Goddess Circle, which was inspired by an online ritual hosted by Ellen Lorenzi-Prince and Nancy Antenucci Dark Goddess Lodge.
In her introduction Ellen notes that the Dark Goddess Tarot was inspired by an intended for troubled times. In my life, I would read that as “Troubled Times”! We are not denying the pain we are going through, and we are not celebrating it … we are taking an honest look at our issues, honoring them, and then doing something about them!
This is not a deck for the faint hearted … this companion book will take the Seeker deeply into their psyche, which can be very scary territory. Proceed at your own risk … but please do proceed if you want to grow, and be all that you can be!
© Bonnie Cehovet
Bonnie Cehovet is Certified Tarot Grand Master, a professional Tarot reader with over ten years experience, a Reiki Master/Teacher and a writer. Bonnie has served in various capacities with the American Tarot Association, is co-founder of the World Tarot Network, and Vice President (as well as Director of Certification) for the American Board For Tarot Certification. She has had articles appear in the 2004 and 2005 Llewellyn Tarot Reader.