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Tel: 212-868-9220; Fax: 212-868-9221; Toll-free (orders only): 800-475-2272
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The Quester Tarot Deck & Book Set,

The Journey of the Brave
by Patricia Beattie & Mike Giddens

The Quester Tarot Deck & Book Set
Price: $24.95
Number of cards in deck: 79 (An "extra" Warrior card. Bet you never knew tarot had a warrior card.)

Measurements: 3.45 x 5.1 inches, or 87 x 130 mm.

Back of card: Solid black with a thin gold outline of a feather, running from the lower left to the upper right. Not for inversion.

Book included: Yes, hardbound (that's rare), 215 pages, 5.15 x 8.1 inches, or 13.2 x 20.6 cm. Illustrated.

Publisher: Element Books. Printed in China. Do you suppose that means Hong Kong?

Comments: Here are the suits in this deck:

Swords are Eagles
Pentacles are Buffaloes
Cups are Bears
Wands are Wolves

Court cards are Maiden, Warrior, Matriarch & Patriarch.

As for the major arcana, there are 23 cards (numbered from 1 - 23, the fifth Warrior as the 23rd). Some of them can be related to the traditional major arcana cards, but some cannot.

Card 1, The Brave, is clearly described as The Fool, but the description for card 2, The Chief, more nearly represents The Emperor, which is the fifth card in a standard major arcana series. The usual second card is of course the Magician.

Which brings up the question of the Medicine Man. The term, "medicine man" is the translation of a common Native American job title. This deck has no Medicine Man. Instead, it has a Shaman & a Shaman's Drum. There's nothing "wrong" with this, except that "shaman" is the Siberian word for magician (look it up in your dictionary), which means the dictionary's definition of "medicine man" as a "shaman" is wrong. It's been my understanding that a "medicine man", in addition to whatever magical abilities he may have, was & is primarily a physical healer. Can you heal by magical means? Surely. And sometimes better than by any other. That's what Reiki is all about, not to mention pranic healing, laying on of hands, therapeutic touch & many other techniques. Any of the practitioners of these arts may be described as "medicine men" but none of them are shamans.

In the book the Shaman is, of course, also described as both a shapeshifter & a medicine man, which merely makes a mess of things. There is something infuriating about the politically correct craze of the last dozen years. Those infected with this illness ignore customary & well-known words & phrases & instead reach for remote, exotic & obscure words which they then redefine to suit their own purposes. In the process they trick us into thinking they are intelligent.

The book describes the Shaman as an all-wise, all-knowing, generous, grandfatherly figure in whom we can put absolute trust. This is of course rubbish. The Shaman is a bridge between the visible & invisible worlds & to be successful must remain precariously balanced between the two. Many are the things he must do which will not be kind or generous, or even comprehensible to outsiders. When you can see the invisible side to things and must act accordingly, there will arise many strange situations. Real shamans are held in awe, and in fear. They are life-givers and life-takers, and for reasons known only to them. But this is no longer the Quester Tarot. The Quester Tarot is full of only good things. Good things that the average, man-in-the-street will recognize as good. Nothing difficult. Nothing strange. Nothing challenging. Nothing transcendental. The Quester deck is full of such cardboard.

But cardboard is what will sell. It's what's popular among the masses. Who wants a shaman who demands the sacrifice of the first-born male child to avert a family disaster? Better a shaman that we can put on the shelf & take down as needed. A bit like a doll, or a patent medicine. We don't want a 79 card challenge-in-a-box, we want comfort. And this deck delivers that comfort.

Packaging note: The cards were in no recognizable order. To find the usual four cards for the top row I had to organize the entire deck. Also note there are no numbers on the major arcana cards, nor do they have any unique design. The bottom row of cards shows three "major arcana" cards. "Awakening" is, of course, the Lovers.

The Astrology Center of America

115 W 30th Street, Suite 402, New York, NY 10001-4010
Tel: 212-868-9220; Fax: 212-868-9221; Toll-free (orders only): 800-475-2272

Tarot Home Tarot Decks Tarot Books Join our tarot mailing list Astrology Home E-Mail: Dave

Established 1993, The Astrology Center of America is owned & operated by David Roell. Except where noted, this entire site ( & its contents are Copyright © 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000 by William R. Roell. All rights reserved. Tarot card images are Copyright © by the copyright holder (generally the publisher).