HazelMoon's Hawaiian Tarot Reviews
HazelMoon's Hawaiian Tarot is a joyful celebration of the beliefs and nature of ancient and modern Hawaii - the ocean, volcanoes, birds, deities and the 'Aloha Spirit'. The 78 card set is self-published, and comes with an 108-page companion book.
Katalin E. Csikos
Tarot Deck - 78 Cards - Artful Dragon Press 2010
Review by Bonnie Cehovet
“At the beginning of time, we were all highly evolved spiritual beings. We lived our life in accordance to the sacred template of Cosmic Law, which we fully honored in thought word and deed. Gradually we became intoxicated with the dream of separation and ego identification, listening to the mind, a collection of thoughts, and forgetting the song of love and unity …” from the book
I was drawn to this deck for many reasons. Csikos did not create a deck from a history book background, she created one from living history … from living on the land of Hawaii, and with the people of Hawaii. Out of her interest in and respect for Hawaiian culture and mythology “HazelMoon’s Hawaiian Tarot” was born.
This deck has the same draw for me that the Gaian Tarot (by Joanna Powell Colbert) does – it is based n the land and the people where the respective decks were created. The Gaian Tarot is based on the lands of the Pacific Northwest, where I grew up as a teenager, and where I have been living for the past fourteen years. HazelMoon’s Hawaiian Tarot represents the five years that I lived in Hawaii when I was in my twenties.
This deck is a celebration of life and the “Aloha Spirit”. This is an all-pervasive spirit that I am reminded of every time I open my college newsletter (I graduated from the University of Hawaii). Csikos defines this spirit as the coordination of the True Self’s mind, heart and soul manifested by thinking good thoughts, emoting good feelings and sharing goodness with others. She goes on to say that Aloha must be experienced, that it brings each person to the Self.
Csikos goes on to talk about Hawaiian wisdom, and what Hawaii taught her. She moved to Hawaii to heal, and heal she did … on all levels. The ability to be healed is expressed clearly in this deck. This is a self-published deck and 108-page companion book. The deck is traditional in structure, with traditional titles for the Major Arcana. Strength is VIII, Justice is XI. The suits are Sticks (Wands), Cups, Swords, and Lava Stones (Pentacles). The Court Cards are King, Queen, Warrior, and Boy.
The companion book includes a short history of the Tarot, along with how to take care of the cards, and how to do a reading. The cards themselves are presented in text only, with no images. There is a description of the cards eergy, a description of the scene portrayed, and upright and reversed divinatory meanings. The traditional Celtic Cross spread is presented at the end of the book.
For the King of Lava Stones, Csikos writes: “This card is the representation o the final fulfillment of a creative task, business venture, or an investment. A loyal and trustworthy man may be too methodical to gain complete success. In other cases it is the symbol of wealth. Wealth may come in the form of associates, money or knowledge. As a talisman, it is a symbol of luck. It also means wanting to make money, to be more successful, and/or to unite or reunite with someone.”
For the Star, Csikos writes: “The Star is the light of hope. Shining in the night in the darkness, the stars provide direction to sailors and present a field of dreams. People are used to looking up at the sky and having a desire to be there. Besides hope, there is mystery, filled with excitement of the knowledge yet to b discovered.”
This is a nature based deck. The box itself, and the cover for the companion book, are done in warm earth tones. The cards are 3” by 4 ˝”. The backs have a dark brown border, with a cream colored center. In the middle of the back, and fanning out on three sides, is a leafy palm tree. The backs are not reversible.
The card faces have dark brown borders on the top and bottom. For the Major Arcana, the card number in Roman numerals is at the top, with the card title at the bottom. For the Minor Arcana Pips (numbered cards), the card number is in Roman numerals on the top (except for the Ace), the card number and suit along the bottom in text. The Court cards show the card title and suit along the bottom of the card. Along the right and left hand sides of the card we see primitive drawing in dark brown against a cream background. Depicted are a turtle, what appears to be a gecko, and several images of humans in different poses. It gives a warm and “ancient” feel to the deck.
I dearly love the focus of the art in this deck – the land and the water carry much more import than the figures in the scenes, making use of intense color and nature itself to convey the necessary energy. It is hard to define which are my favorite cards – they all draw me in! Let’s start with the Wheel of Fortune – against a background of the Islands we see a circle of life – stick figures, plumeria flowers, an adorable gecko and more!
In the Boy of Sticks we see a lone figure strongly paddling his canoe over the blue waters. The Queen of Swords shows a lone female figure seated, head on her knees, sword at her side, volcano in the background. The Four of Sticks shows lush greenery and beautiful red flowers surrounding a rushing waterfall.
The Two of Swords features a beautiful rainbow, while the Empress stand regally in her royal purple gown. The Emperor stands, wearing a gold cape and crown, staff in his left hand, surveying his lands. Death shows a quarter moon over blue water, upon which floats a plumeria lei. The Five of Sticks shows a barren, broken highway, while the Six of Sticks shows a lush landscape with beautiful blue water in the background.
This deck is very much a coming home for me. The time that I spent in Hawaii filled me with good memories … memories that I will always have to fall back on. This deck is a great addition to any collection – a valuable tool for self-exploration, as well as a gentle deck to offer clients. Enjoy!
© 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.
Review by Lizzie Christy
HazelMoon's Hawaiian Tarot is a wonderful deck by Katalin E. Csiskos, that blends Hawaiian spirituality, the power of ancient and modern beliefs and the love of nature in all it's glory. This is a wonderful deck that shows us the importance of living happy, contented lives and the rewards of living in harmony with one's self and the glorious beauty of Mother Nature in all her majestic forms.
This is a traditional 78 card deck, with Strength numbered 8 and Justice at number 11. The card stock is fabulous to shuffle and the cards have a glossy lamination that just makes the imagery pop. When going through the deck, I noticed that many of the cards depict landscapes, and according to Katalin, in Hawaii the land or "aina" is very sacred to it's peoples and thus protected closely.
The Major Arcana each have a Roman numeral at the top and name of each card at the bottom and I just love the choices of coloring and situations portrayed that give me a complete "sense" of the message of each card. All of the Major Arcana have the traditional names with the exception of the Devil, which has been renamed The Evil, in which the Hawaiian belief is that nothing is more evil than the disrespect of the land, nature or the animals that inhabit it.
The Minor Arcana are arranged by suit, starting with Sticks, representing Wands in most decks, followed by Swords, Cups and Lava Stones equivalent to Pentacles or Coins. The Courts are represented by Boy (Page) Warrior (Knight) Queen and King. I absolutely love the way Katalin has used color and scenes that depict all the different aspects of each suit perfectly.
This is a wonderful deck that not only pays homage to
nature in all her glory but the healing and teaching
aspects that we can all learn from to use as guidance,
healing and understanding of ourselves and the world we
live in. I would quite happily recommend this deck to
anyone both novice and experienced alike!
Review by Jonathan Duke
The joyful island tarot. Wow, I am impressed with a little known deck that just popped up in my life. Hazelmoon's Hawaiian Tarot.
I was told a few years ago about a deck that was a one of a kind and real cool since it was all about Hawaii. I have been there and it sounded like a great idea. So I got one and was happy right away since it had a book too. It is always nice to get the artist's card interpretations, since it connects the traditional meanings with the new images.
In this set Hazelmoon uses her art and personal joy of Hawaii to create images that are both known landmarks and other suggestive locations or events. I was told that many people who live in the islands have nature spots that when they are feeling stressed or emotional they go to. That might be some o the paintings on the cards. I hope so. To give us a peek at a personal space like that would just charge up a card more.
Artists tend to be sensitive people and a good artist usually puts themselves into their work so I felt closer to her for the non-specific images than the tourists stops like the blue church in Kona (which wasn’t blue anymore when I saw it). So I guess her card is more an artifact now and a memory of the older Hawaii past. Cool!
Her colors with bold brush strokes and a feeling she painted with passion makes the cards come alive. I want to go back and find each card in the life of the islands. But I should say more about the cards and not my vacation wishes huh. Professional work from the printers in both card stock and finish. The gloss helps to bring pubs colors and depth and after a few shuffles, made them glide easy for me. I liked the size too. I have held many cards even the round ones and these kept me from getting Vegas fancy with them. I find small cards make me go fast and forget to put my energy into them. Like I am doing a card trick and wowing the person I am reading for. I take my time and keep a rhythm going while I have the person flood their thoughts and feelings into the deck. It is so exciting for me that I almost like the shuffle and layout part more than the read.
I was told by Hazelmoon that this is the only print
run she will do and that was why she had the printer
run off several thousand so once this batch has homes
that is it. I got another one for keeping. I know that
as time goes by some decks will be lost or worn it so
little by little these will become more valued and
collectable. I fantasize that one day when I am old and grey I
will have the last set and thy will almost vibrate with
energy. Maybe I will hear the conch she'll blow and will
then know it has become so.
I would say more but this
is making me excited so I am off to do a reading and
then dream of the islands as winter here closes in. I
think of snow as white sand only colder and less crunchy
in my lunch plate. Aloha everyone and go check out
Review by Danny Baker
Katalin E. Csikos pays tribute to the Hawaiian culture, past and present, with her newly and self-published HazelMoon's Hawaiian Tarot. The shrink-wrapped box is approximately 6 inches tall by a little over 4 inches wide by a little over an 1.5 inches thick, and accommodates both the deck and a 108-page companion book.
The deck structure follows the classic 78-card Tarot structure with 22 Major Arcana cards and 56 Minor Arcana cards. The Majors are numbered with Roman Numerals and The Fool is 0. Strength is VIII and Justice is XI. The Minors are also numbered with Roman Numerals with the exception of the Courts, which aren't associated with numbers. Most of the card titles of the Majors will be familiar to users of the Waite-Smith deck or clones of it. The 15th card of the Majors, which is traditionally The Devil card is called The Evil in this deck. The Courts in this deck are King, Queen, Warrior and Boy, with Warrior and Boy representing the traditional Knight and Page, respectively. The suits of Wands and Pentacles (or Coins) are represented by Sticks and Lava Stones.
With dimensions of nearly 4.5 inches tall and 3 inches wide, these cards are somewhat shorter and wider than a Waite-Smith deck. The corners are rounded and the cards are flexible so they are comfortable to shuffle, but the cards have a glossy lamination that makes them a bit stiff (which I like). The deck sits much taller than a Waite-Smith deck, which may be due the the lamination or card stock used.
Each card contains an image that is from a painting by the author. The images are contained within a somewhat wide border (larger than .5 inches) that is very interesting in its own right. The top and bottom border sides have a rich, dark woodgrain. The top contains the card number, centered and and printed in yellow. The bottom contains the card title, also centered and printed in yellow. The left and right border sides are gold with four of eight native glyphs on each side. The image on each card is centered and has a glow of color emanating from it into the border (which makes the borders seem smaller than they are). The color of the glow varies. The Majors have a green glow. Sticks are orange, Cups are a cyan blue, Swords are red and Lava Stones are purple. The back of the cards depict an image of palm tree being viewed from the ground up in browns and sepia. The image looks like it is on old paper with worn edges sitting on a brown surface. While the image itself is not reversible, the deck is intended to be used with reversals if the owner wishes, as the author has included reversed meanings for each card in the companion book.
The imagery used in this deck is beautiful and haunting. The colors are striking. Through her paintings, Ms. Csikos brings Hawaiian culture (pre-Caucasian encroachment and post) and Tarot culture together. Looking through the deck, you see the Hawaiian people and their interaction with nature and their integration with the outside world. We see the Hawaiian people, volcanic activity, oceans, tropical foliage, and buildings... all elevated to the same level so conflict and other interaction, feelings, etc., can be depicted by any combination of these things. HawaiianTarotIn The Hierophant card, the iconic white church is shown no longer white and being overwhelmed by the beautiful native vegetation. The Tower card shows the well-known Aloha Tower in Honolulu. The Hanged Man showing a Hawaiian hanging from a white bridge. In the Five of Sticks card, the conflict shown is between a road and a lava flow. The cards show the history and evolution of the Hawaiian culture and spirit through diversity, with a return back to an eternal spiritual base. There is a melancholia for what has been lost, but also an optimistic and powerful expectation for the future, all shared with a friendliness and openness that the islands have come to be known for.
The companion book is well done. I hesitate to call it a "little white book" (LWB) because it is a professionally bound, small paperback book of 103 pages. The first sections introduce the reader to the reasons Ms. Csikos decided to make a Hawaiian Tarot, the spirit of Hawaii, and some information on Tarot in general. Most of the book is dedicated to providing individual card meanings for upright and reversals of the cards, including information on the landmarks depicted or other specific information when relevant. She also includes a Celtic Cross spread.
I'm always excited when Tarots appear that dare to
challenge the traditionally European archetypes with
archetypes relevant to the culture, people or region the
Tarot is created to depict or share. This deck is a
great example of this. I would recommend this deck to
anyone looking for a deck somewhat outside the
traditional Waite-Smith or clone deck.
Review by Paul Hanczaryk
I really really like this deck! It is beautiful. It's a 78 card deck with paintings from Katlin's experience in, on, and from Hawaii.
Some of the majors in the deck are historical, and show actual people, buildings, and places from Hawaii's rich history. The court cards are Boy, Warrior, Queen, King. The minors are all painted as pips, with beautiful landscape scenes from Hawaii.
In the companion book Katalin shares why she created Hawaiian tarot, some of her personal Hawaiian experience, what Aloha Spirit means, and more importantly what it taught her. The book goes on to explain a bit of what the tarot is. The companion book then explains some of the paintings on the cards, and gives a more traditional meaning for each card. The book also includes a lesson on tarot spreads near the end.
They are a beautiful a work
of art. Maybe not for a beginner...maybe? ...but for
the experienced reader and the collector, absolutely.
It's like taking a magical vacation even though it's a
Cleveland Winter! Well done Katalin!