When we make SoulCollage® cards INTENTIONALLY, we pretty much know what we are making, perhaps even its name and some of its meaning. When we sit down at our card making space with an intentional card in mind, it’s meaning is usually clear right from the start.
This card, to the left, is an example of a a card I made in this intentional manner. It is a Committee card to honor my Inner Writer. I call her Cassandra, or Cassie for short. I have always been a writer, but only recently came to realize that I don’t have just one Committee part who loves to write and is good at writing… I have two! One writes fiction (her name is Alexandra, or Alex for short) and the other, Cassie, writes nonfiction.
So I set about making a card to honor each of them. I gathered images that felt to me like my inner Cassie would look and feel as she was writing spiritual or personal growth nonfiction.
But when we create a card INTUITIVELY, it’s a whole other ball game, so to speak! By intuitive card making, I simply mean that we gather images that we are drawn to, without really knowing why, and we put them together on a card that pleases our eye as well as our soul.
What do we do after we make our cards? We sit down with them and let them have a voice. Trusting that each card represents an important piece of our personal universe, we ask it some basic questions: Who are you? What gifts do you bring me? What do you want from me? ….etc.
Sometimes our cards speak to us quickly and immediately, telling us their stories without pause.
But… sometimes… particularly with these intuitively-made cards, they don’t respond. What to do then? Here are some suggestions.
Ways to Work with a “Mystery Card:”
- Instead of starting with the right-brain process of asking those questions and answering from the voice of the card (Neter), try the left-brain exercise of writing a physical description of the card. Pretend that you are describing it in an email to a friend who can’t see it. For example, in this card (to the left), my physical description of the card might begin like this: There is a strong muscled man in the lower right corner. His hands are clasped, his arms are folded onto his knees, his head is bent and he is hunched over as if in defeat. In the lower left corner is a young girl holding a magic wand. She is looking upwards and to the right….
- Take your time with this. Use color words, positional words (left, right, behind, in front of, beside, next to, under….etc). Describe exactly what you see. Notice every tiny detail and write it down.
- Then try making a list. That’s right, a list of words or phrases that come to mind when you look at the card. For example, in the card above, my list might begin like this:
* defeated man
* triumphant stance
* magical child
* guided by the divine
* …. etc.
- When you are done, go back and read over everything you have written, from your list, and from your physical description. Circle or highlight any words or phrases or sentences that particularly jump out at you.
- On a separate piece of paper, make a list of everything you circled or highlighted. Read it out loud to yourself.
- If this appeals to you, rearrange your list so that it “flows,” adding or taking away as needed.
- By this time, the card’s meaning might be a little clearer to you. For example, when I did this with my intuitive card above, I could see very clearly that it was telling me a story about success following defeat, and being guiding by the divine (see the statues on either side of the corridor?) all along the way.
- Now try asking “Who are you?” and “What do you have to give me?” and “What do you want from me?” and see if the answers come a little easier.
Please note: Sometimes, even after doing all of this, the card will still remain baffling to you. Here’s my wisdom for you on this: ALLOW IT TO BE OKAY!!! That’s right. Sometimes SoulCollage® cards remain mysteries to us long after we make them, and sometimes even after we work with them. Sometimes a card will speak to us, but we won’t be able to classify it into one of the four suits. LET THIS BE OKAY.
Put the card into your deck and don’t worry over it. Some day, when you least expect it, its meaning will make itself known to you. You might see a movie or read a novel, and a certain character will remind you of what’s happening on your card. Or you’ll hear a lyric of a song and you’ll suddenly be reminded of this card. Or someone will tell you a story about something that happened to them, and you’ll think of your card.
And one more thing… even if you don’t know the name of a card, or its story, you can still keep it in your deck, and in the mix of cards that you draw from in your daily readings or your focused readings. Because even these mysterious unknown cards still have wisdom to give us when we ask a question and they happen to appear.