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Qualities/criteria for an Oracle deck

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Qualities/criteria for an Oracle deck


I'm sure this has been asked before. If so, I won't be offended if you just direct me to the relevant thread...

I was wondering what your criteria is for a successful oracle deck/system.

It goes without saying that it must have good cardstock, good quality reproductions, good artwork etc etc. I don't mean that.

I mean in terms of content, pet hates, indispensible qualities, ideal number of cards, structure etc. I mean, if someone were creating an oracle deck from scratch what would your expectations be in order for you to want to buy and use it?
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I think there are no specific criteria for an oracle deck. It varies considerably depending on the theme. If you think about some of the recent releases (e.g. Oracle of Visions) they all have different artwork, different number of cards etc
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My first "must" would be a theme that would tie all the cards together. Of course there are some themes I don't care for (angels and unicorns for example), but having an idea that creates a common bond is helpful. I've seen a few oracles that seem to come from someone closing their eyes and just picking random words from a dictionary (of course maybe there is a Webster's Oracle).
The second "must" would be a good book or booklet that explained the cards, hopefully in more depth than a few keywords. For instance "love" is a little too general and vague... I also would prefer not to have "fluffy bunny make some money" meanings. New age hogwash - "check your aura, it seems to need a tune-up - is not helpful to me. I prefer something more practical.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tibor View Post
I think there are no specific criteria for an oracle deck. It varies considerably depending on the theme. If you think about some of the recent releases (e.g. Oracle of Visions) they all have different artwork, different number of cards etc
I know. That's why I said to leave artwork out of it.

But from a personal perspective, what number of cards do you prefer?

Bodhiseed, your post made me wonder whether in most oracle decks, the images come before the individual card names/titles or vice versa? It's like with music, something always comes first, lyrics or melody!

I have noticed a growing tendency to favour Lenormand-type meanings (or have images which lean towards Lenormand), despite what many of us say about wanting our oracles to be "free". I personally prefer oracles which leave Lenormand to Lenormand. If I'm "doing" Oracles, I like them to be their own system.
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Yes actually I was going to say that I prefer Lenormand-style decks so for me it has to be at least a 36-card deck. I do not intend to go off topic but I like to use 3 of the popular Lo Scarabeo oracles together (Every Day Oracle, Gypsy Oracle, Sybilla Oracle) within one reading. These types of oracle decks include a vast array of symbols. I do not really like faeries, angels, gods etc oracles (except the Oracle of Light and Shadow). For example the Gods and Titans Oracle is a nice art deck but for me it doesn't work in readings. Also some of the gods are too sexy (distracting).
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Le Fanu View Post

But from a personal perspective, what number of cards do you prefer?

Bodhiseed, your post made me wonder whether in most oracle decks, the images come before the individual card names/titles or vice versa? It's like with music, something always comes first, lyrics or melody!

I have noticed a growing tendency to favour Lenormand-type meanings (or have images which lean towards Lenormand), despite what many of us say about wanting our oracles to be "free". I personally prefer oracles which leave Lenormand to Lenormand. If I'm "doing" Oracles, I like them to be their own system.
Forgot to say I prefer 30 or more cards.
Chicken or the egg... With the oracle I made for myself, the messages/titles came first, then the images. Here:
http://www.tarotforum.net/showthread...hlight=12+step
I think (and this is just personal opinion), when the images come first, it is sometimes hard to tie them together with a system. And yes, like you, I want the deck to have its own system rather than borrow from another.
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Mostly, that whatever messages are included have some practical relevance to my life - at least, at the time I'm purchasing it.

I don't necessarily find things like tuning the chakras (for example) to be impractical though. lol

Generally, what I don't like is when the concepts depicted on cards are random, obvious, too abstract/esoteric, offensive/things I don't believe in, or excessively negative and anxiety inducing. There's enough negativity and anxiety in life already. If I'm consulting an oracle, I want a way to turn that around or minimize/eliminate it, not to exacerbate it.

The rest is down to artwork.

Most of the ones I have consist of at least 45 cards... I find that after a few months though, I've drawn the same ones far too many times and I end up taking some of them out. (I really don't need the same message repeatedly, for months on end, no matter what the universe thinks.) I combine oracle decks to alleviate this, and somehow, they usually end up having less cards in them instead of more - and yet they work better. lol
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As I can be a bit of a slave to the Lenormand I'd have to say that 36 cards as a minimum is a must for me. The majority of my oracles are Lenormands and I was fairly convinced until recently that they were they only type I liked however a few have come along to change my mind - Graven Oracle and Gods and Titans.

So, with that in mind I feel that I also need a theme to tie things together. I don't mind a phrase or keyword but it needs to be something to spark the intuition like, for example, "memories," or even as I've seen on the new Oracle of Shapeshifters something like, "ever looking back." But I also don't want a load of fluffy rubbish there.

I need a book that ties the whole concept together and that concept needs to be a good one! If it's going to be The Oracle of Zombies Versus Killer Unicorns then that's fine, just convince me that there's a reason behind it and a good spread or two and it's all good

I'm not even bothered by card size but good card stock is a must. I've got rid of decks in a heartbeat if I just don't gel with the card.
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For me, a good oracle deck has to have some sort of coherent system. The cards need to make sense with each other as well as on their own. I really don't like oracles that seem like a mish-mash of jumbled symbols and meanings. If it doesn't come with this coherence, I will often find myself creating a system (or get rid of the cards).

I prefer at least 30 cards, Lenormand style 36 is perfect.

Also, it helps me if the oracle works with set meanings and combinations. I find that I prefer to make intuitive leaps with tarot and use that for deeper readings. I like my oracles to provide the day-to-day, nuts and bolts of living. No wishy-washy, New Age meanings for me either.
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I prefer oracles that have at least 50 cards (similar to a deck of playing cards). I find 36 cards, like the Lenormand deck ,not sufficient for most oracles. Lenormand cards, afterall are usually read in combinations which is not done with oracles.
There also needs to be a balance between positive and negative cards. I don't need all cards to tell me that everything is just perfect and the way it's supposed to be
I don't like cards that only have text on them, but there need to be enough key words and symbolism so that it can also be used without a companion book. But I still want to have a companion book. I just don't want to spend ours studying the companion book before I can use the cards. They should also be visually appealing
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