You’ll find several cards in the Major Arcana deck of Tarot of Empowerment have new names. A major reason I acquiesced to make a deck was because Gordana’s art so clearly reflected the essence of the cards as I saw them.
After Gordana created each card, I would use it to clarify readings. I would read with one of my full decks like, Tarot of the Spirit by Pamela Eakins. When a card we had completed came up in the course of the spread, I would interpret Pamela’s card, and then refer to our card, to clarify or expand on the meaning of the card in the context of the reading.
As I used each new card, I became clearer about my Tarot explanations, and how the visuals of our cards exemplified the meanings. Now that we have gone through this process, Gordana and I feel that our deck achieves the goal of showing how each and every card can be a positive tool of empowerment. Tarot of Empowerment is not the first deck to change some of the names, nor will it be the last.
Empowerment tools must be relevant and accessible. Words and names are powerful. Part of our goal is to make Tarot accessible to anyone by removing obstacles to understanding. For example, the word Hierophant is confusing and not a part of modern day vocabulary, hence out name, the Advisor.
Among the first cards we knew we would rename were the Emperor and Empress cards because those titles are not relevant in today’s’ world. However, the essence of the archetypal Emperor as one who has final authority, is relevant. Hence the name change to Authority. Likewise, the essence of the Empress is to nurture and sustain herself, her family and her community. We decided to call this card Sustenance.
I love the Fool. The essence of the card is a young person naively beginning a journey of self discovery to learn about the world. As I used our card as a clarifier, I realized the Fool is on more than a journey. The young person is on a quest with the goal of understanding each of the archetypes. Finally, we decided that Quester is more empowering than Fool.
There are other names of cards we’ve changed that I’ll explain in my book. Here is a complete list of the cards we’ve changed, and there are one or two others we may yet change.
Fool = Quester, Empress = Sustenance, Emperor = Authority, Hierophant = Advisor, Lovers = Choices, Chariot = Determination, Hermit = Introspection, Hanged Man = New Perspectives, Death = Life Cycles, Devil = Entrapment, Tower = Chaos, Judgment = Awakening.