THE GODDESS CARD PACK. DISCOVERING YOUR GODDESS WITHIN
by Juni Parkhurst
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Unfortunately, it is one of these rare situations where I am not able to provide you with the information about the author because I cannot find much. There is no author’s bio in the booklet, no author’s page nor profile on social media. She seems non-existent in the Internet, all I could find was the address of the place where she is said to work as a hypnotherapist (in the booklet it is also mentioned she organises the goddess card readings and the goddess workshops). She also belongs to the UK Association for Humanistic Psychology Practitioners.
If you know anything about her, please share it with me.
The first advantage is definitely a wide range of cultures included in this deck, you will find here the goddesses from different parts of the world.
Again the images turn out to be a strong advantage of this deck, they are all bright, colourful and similar in style of expressionist or fauvist artists such as Munch or Matisse. They may appear as a bit careless and childish yet it may also be treated as an advantage because this simple and direct way appeals to the reader’s intuition immediately. Intuition is the basic, primary and straightforward sense so colourful, uncomplicated images can be very helpful in making it work. Of course, as I always repeat after the ancient Romans de gustibus non est disputandum and some will consider it to be a disadvantage of this deck.
Big thumb up for including the real goddesses only, no card of Mary here.
Another huge advantage is the attempt to give structure to the oracle card deck. The whole deck is divided into six parts ruled by the archetypical deities who impersonate its features: Aphrodite, Kali, Diana, Hecate, Athena and Demeter. To find the goddess who corresponds best to your nature, you have to fill in a short personality test. Each ruling goddess is then described by the summary of her mythology and her equivalent in modern psychology, also visualisations and rituals are given as well as divinatory meaning.
Other goddesses are classified to the clusters ruled by the above mentioned deities.
Kali’s Cluster of Goddesses of the Dark Side of the Moon
Demeter’s Cluster of Goddesses Who Nurture
Hecate’s Cluster of Goddesses of the Sacred Healing Mysteries
Diana’s Cluster of Nature Goddesses
Athena’s Cluster of Warrior Goddesses
Aphrodite’s Cluster of Love and Sex Goddesses
I consider it to be an advantage of this deck, after all such subject as the goddesses mythology seems to be an excellent source of archetypes ready to be translated into the modern times. In fact, I am surprised that most of goddess oracle decks do not pay attention to this aspect but concentrate on the pure oracle or worship elements.
The division may as well be considered to be the disadvantage because it is controversial. The attribution of ruling deities to their clusters can be disputed. Some goddesses are rather versatile and it is difficult to classify them to one category only, Sekhmet could as well be a warrior goddess, Freyja and Inanna are as much love and sex goddesses as they are warlike and Lakshmi seems to match the nurturing goddess cluster. Personally I would like to see a whole new cluster of wisdom, intelligence and inspiration goddesses with Sophia, Brigid and Athena.
In my opinion the goddess card pack makes the impression of a slapdash if not messy edition. There are factual mistakes (I have already mentioned in my post about Demeter that Ceres was not a Greek but Latin goddess) as well as simple typos (‘Eostara’, ‘The Morrogon’ and ‘Lakshimi’). Instinctively I started to search for the name of the person responsible for correction but I found none. In fact the information about the edition is very limited as if just one person did the whole publishing work. There is the copyright recognition of Juni Parkhurst but for the text only, not for the images as I (and probably most users) initially thought! So who created the images? Similarly to Godsfield Press’ other issue The Goddess Power Pack there is no direct remark, bah! there is not even a list of the people participating in the card pack edition as it was in the case of Cordelia Brabbs’ deck so we cannot even guess who did the pictorial work. I was baffled even more when I read the following sentence in the booklet
Juni Parkhurst asserts the moral right to be identified as the author of this work.
‘Moral’? Seems ambiguous to me… When it comes to copyright it is common to establish clear and precise attribution to avoid any possible legal battles and ‘moral’ has too vast meanings to be exact. It is not the first time when the publication by Godsfield’s Press lacks clarity (see my review of Goddess Power Pack). I am not going to further explore the topic but I certainly treat it as a huge disadvantage of this deck.
To sum up, let me quote the Russian proverb signifying great plans but ineffectual result: We wanted to do our best but in the end it all turned out as usual…
a book containing the introduction, information how to use the card pack, ‘Which Goddess Are You?’ test, the descriptions of the goddesses and advice how to use cards (how to lay out the cards, a couple of spreads, how to interpret the cards), famous goddess types and index
In a book each card is presented in the following way:
the descriptions of the cluster leading goddesses (history, today, challenges, love, ritual, visualisation, divinatory meaning)
other goddesses (key words and short divinatory meaning)
The size of cards is 13,5 x 8 cm
Back sides of cards show the brown and yellow fish swimming in the blue waves.
© 1999 Godsfield Press and text © 1999 Juni Pankhurst
Publisher: Godsfield Press/Sterling
ISBN: 0 – 8069 – 9903 – 9