The deck comes with 52 cards, a comprehensive guidebook, and a fold-out spread template to use in your readings. Each card features an artist’s reproduction of an original piece of cave art that speaks to the user on a deep, subconscious level. One unique feature of this deck is that it contains two interactive cards: the journeyer and the companion. The journeyer represents the seeker who is accessing the hidden realms for guidance, and the companion represents their spirit guide who will accompany them on their journey. The remaining fifty cards are divided into five suits of ten, including Spirits, Ancestors, Dancers, Hunters, and Shamans. These suits are referred to as Tribes, and each one represents a different aspect of human life and experience. It is through these cards that the journeyer receives guidance and answers to their inquiries.
The fold-out spread is in the form of a human handprint, which acts as a map of the shaman’s universe, where Spirit interacts with everyday reality. The palm of the hand represents the Middle World, which is the spiritual dimension of our own world. From this space, we are able to transcend the confines of physicality and embark on a journey. This area is where the interactive cards – the journeyer and the companion – are able to operate, and they are placed here during a reading. The fingers that branch out from the Middle World represent five Caves that serve as gateways to the Spirit World. Each Cave corresponds with a particular Tribe and holds its own meanings, and one card is placed in each of these areas when conducting a reading. Beyond the border of the hand lies the Spirit World, where the seeker journeys in search of answers from the ancient voices of the past, who are able to communicate their wisdom from this realm. The handprint symbolizes this journey, as it represents the presence of both human and spiritual beings passing between our world and the normally unseen realm of our ancestors.
The concepts behind the Tribes and Caves are described elaborately in the accompanying guidebook, which also provides an in-depth glimpse into the meaning behind each card in the deck. While these descriptions serve as a great starting point, I have found in my own experience that the best readings are achieved by tuning into the cave art depicted on the cards and allowing them to speak to you on a deeper level. In my work with The Shaman’s Oracle, I have found that while these cave paintings come from times in our distant past, they still hold relevance in our daily lives today and can teach us many important lessons about ourselves as well as our relationships with the environment and other people when we allow them to communicate with us on the level of Spirit. This oracle deck does an outstanding job at bridging the gap between past and present to show that while our living situations have drastically changed over the past tens of thousands of years, we still face many of the same issues as our ancestors.
Truth be told, The Shaman’s Oracle was actually the second oracle card deck I ever purchased, but I set it aside for many months after only a couple of readings due to some of the complexities surrounding its use. While the information I received was both uplifting and strikingly accurate, the readings themselves seemed to take quite a long time to conduct when combining the meaning of each card’s placement in the spread with its actual message. At that point, I was still learning to work with my intuitive faculties and I preferred to practice by drawing a couple of cards and allowing them to speak through me rather than adhering to a strict system. However, as I continued on my pursuit of shamanism, the deck began calling to me and I decided to try working with it once again. As I revisited the cards, I began to combine the two approaches, working with the interactive cards and Cave Glyph spread and combining the meanings of each placement with the messages I received from the cards. I have also tried many readings without the spread and interactive cards, but in my experiences I have found that I receive the most powerful guidance when working with the oracle as it was designed.
Since then, The Shaman’s Oracle has become one of my favourite decks and I have begun to incorporate it into my Shamanic Consultations, as it serves as such a reliable intermediary between our world and the realm of the ancestors. The remarkable insight provided by this deck can be an invaluable asset to anyone on a spiritual path and I would strongly recommend it to anyone who resonates with the concept behind it. However, due to the intricacy of this system, I would advise any potential seekers to work with some of the more traditional decks for a while before picking up The Shaman’s Oracle. Once you’ve grown accustomed to working with it, this oracle will bestow you with astonishing gems of wisdom from our ancient ancestors. For those with a background or interest in shamanism, it may even become one of your principle decks of use – that has been the case in my experience.
Purchase the Shaman’s Oracle deck here.
We score the Shaman’s Oracle 4/5 feathers