I have been testing out The Anubis Oracle, a deck which nods at the tarot and then goes off to do its own thing, with an Egyptian flavor. The deck was created by Nicki Scully and Linda Star Wolf; and illustrated by Kris Waldherr, known for some of her tarot work. For this post, I want to capture a quick reading I did yesterday. I’ll be talking about this 35-card deck along the way.

I’m taking a two-day class for work, on an advanced knowledge management subject. My question: What can I expect from this class?

Deck Structure and a Spread

In The Anubis Oracle, the supplied spreads take the form of the deck’s minor arcana. In this deck the major arcana are loosely related to the tarot, where each card represents the principle of an Egyptian deity or “neter.” The major arcana also includes four elemental cards, akin to the four aces of tarot. (That’s 26 cards so far.) The deck’s minor arcana are composite cards — scenes that comprise at least three of the major arcana interacting in some fashion. There are eight of these. Lastly, as patron of this deck, Anubis gets his own card that can be set aside as a guide or used to represent the seeker. These comprise the 35 cards of this deck.

The spread I chose is from the card called “I-Entering the Mystery” (that’s Roman numeral 1), which is a minor arcana and composite card:


This card prominently features three of the major arcana, who act as positions in this spread. The top position features the vulture deity Mut, who is the Alchemist in this deck; she is analogous to the tarot Magician. Her position shows the guiding principles or what guards the person asking the question. The second position at lower right is Nephthys, who is akin to the High Priestess and is the shadow of Isis. Her position is about intuition and the energy of a situation. Finally, Isis is at the lower left. She is reminiscent of the Empress, and shows what materially supports the subject of the question; what is there to help it happen in physical terms.

In the deck’s accompanying book, the spread’s purpose is summed up as looking at what’s next, or what’s coming up.

The Reading

I shuffled the deck and drew the three cards for this reading.

anubis_oracle_20131120The Anubis Oracle reading: What can I expect from my class?
Spread: Entering the Mystery

For my reading, the element of Air as shown by the Ibis appears in the place of Mut on top. I summarize this as Air being the root of the matter, and providing the impetus as well as initial direction. Knowledge and agile thought are guiding principles. This seems appropriate, as I am attending a class with a challenging subject, and hope to walk away with enough knowledge that I can apply it at work.

The second position of my reading holds VII-Sacred Purpose, a composite card in Nephthys’ place. (The book recommends leaving out the composites until after one gets to know the majors individually.) There is a lot going on! Ptah creates reality through speech, and Anubis walks through a door created by the neteru of sky (Nut) above and the earth (Geb) below. It’s a sort of cosmic birth. The book suggests meditating on composite cards when they appear, but I’m trying to get this post out today, so I’m going to “wing it.”

Ptah reminds me of the teacher, imparting knowledge through speech — the class lecture. I can relate to Anubis, as I’m thinking of entering a whole new world, at least with regards to the subject of my class. Acting on this knowledge requires support from above and below; or from managers as well as peers. The energy of the situation is complex and requires a lot of activity from a lot of people. Ptah’s “right speech and thought” will also be required from me.

The third position is the left leg of the triangle, and shows the Sphinx in the position of Isis. The Sphinx is related to the tarot Heirophant. For the deck creators, the Sphinx is also the entrance to all knowledge — the inner library or akashic records. (Co-creator Nicki Scully’s spiritual journey started in 1978 at a Grateful Dead concert between the Sphinx’s paws.) This suggests that I am going to walk away feeling that I learned something I can use.

Overall, I think the reading emphasizes knowledge and education; and making use of resources available to me. I’m entering a proverbial brave new world, and there is going to be a lot of think about and consider. I’m going to have to account for those around me as I plan anything, and remember to consider the bigger picture. I suspect assistance from a professional would be required in reality, and the Sphinx also supports this.

My Thoughts about The Anubis Oracle

I was impressed at how the cards in this spread honed in on my question. I’m sure that with experience I could get more details from them.

As for the deck, I rather like it, even though it’s not my usual type. The cards are bigger than a tarot deck, and I have a hard time shuffling them. The creators recommend the fan-and-pick approach to choosing cards.

I am very intrigued by the deck’s structure. I wanted to get a feel for the way the composites are built from the majors, and in turn become the deck’s main spreads. The companion book does say that experienced card readers can use The Anubis Oracle in any spread, not just the ones in the book.

I plan to continue working with this deck, and may post more readings with it. The official site offers a good online readings for free. Just be warned: doing some of those and seeing the cards helped convince me to buy the deck!

Have you tried The Anubis Oracle? What did you think? Hit me up in the comments!