Because I posted a Valentine's Day card spell yesterday, illustrated with Ciro Marchetti's "Gilded Reverie" version of the Lenormand deck, I thought I'd say a few more words about this deck. The Lenormand was actually the first fortune telling deck I got to know, long before I heard of tarot cards, because my grandmother owned a version of this deck. For purposes of comparison, below is what yesterday's Valentine spell would look like with my grandmother's deck:
An interesting thing about the Lenormand deck is that the card reading technique (as described in the booklet that came with this older version of the deck) involves laying out the entire deck in rows of 8 cards, with 4 cards centered in the bottom row. This layout isn't too unwieldy, because there are only 36 cards. (This differs from most tarot techniques, where you're dealing with just a few selected cards.) You then interpret the different cards in terms of how they are positioned in relation to the "key" card, which is card 28 (a man), if reading for a man, or card 29 (a woman), if reading for a woman. Cards closer to the key card carry more weight. Cards are also read in relation to each other, so favorable cards close to card 27, the Letter, would foretell good news, whereas challenging cards may warn of news that is not so welcome. Graphic relationships also figure in interpretation, So, card 6, the Clouds, has a dark side and a light side, and it makes a difference whether events denoted by other cards are to the side of the dark clouds or the white clouds. In seeing how card meanings are modified by how they stand in relation to one another and their graphic features, my early experience with the Lenormand helped me to appreciate ways that tarot images can interrelate.
Persons who are intimidated about studying tarot because they're concerned there's so much to learn might want to try the Lenormand instead. I've used it very effectively, and it offers a different selection of images for those who want to do more with card spells.
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