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Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Stones and stripes

This card from Haindl Tarot (Lotos 2002) always makes me think of striped pyjamas, which makes me think of 'The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas', which makes me think of World War II and prisoners in concentration camps. It's awful, I know, but it's what I thought of the first time I saw the card. I later found out that the deck creator, Hermann Haindl, did spend time in a Russian prisoner of war camp. I have no idea why I've always thought of these things, but I'm pretty sure Haindl probably had no such thing in mind when he created this card. Rachel Pollack's guidebook explains that actually this image comes from a detail of a painting by Haindl of the Greek God Dionysus, 'from a section of the painting meant to indicate harmony.' She goes on to explain that the pattern seen here is like the lines of a tallis, or prayer shawl worn by Jewish men. So there's some sort of connection going on in there...

Anyway, leaving aside my odd associations, this certainly appears to be a card about balance. The two stones are balanced, the dark and light stripes balance one another, and there's a dark area in on the lower right side of the card contrasting with a bright area onthe upper left side of the card. These things remind me more of the juggling man in the RWS 2 of Pentacles than of the Golden Dawn title, 'Harmonious Change'. But I guess when you think about it, for a change to be harmonious, all its elements would need to be in balance. It's lack of balance that causes conflict, or disharmony, so actually it does make sense.

Actually, balance has been a lot on my mind this morning, so this card is a good one to draw today. Pollack says this card can represent working together harmoniously, especially in business. I would add that because this is the pentacles/coins/disk suit, it also has to do with aspects of physical health, and it's in that area that I'm seeking some 'harmonious change'. 


  1. I have never been attracted to this deck before but your reflections of the past few days are dragging me in.. Ms Enabler!! Blue striped PJ's always remind me of the Johnny Depp movie Secret Window... I love that.

    1. It's a deck that ought to be in most collections, I believe. If you've got one, drag it out and have a play! If not, do consider getting one. :)