The Transformational Oracle of the Morrighan by Bela Síol and illustrated by Igor Alexandre is a mostly black-and-white illustrated deck with accents of color. The Oracle set is an invaluable resource for anyone seeking connection to the Morrighan.
Bela Síol is a Brazilian pagan priestess and creator of The Oracle of Nehalennia, The Oracle of Freya, The Oracle of Arianrhod, The Oracle of Venus, and many more. The illustrator Igor Alexandre is a priest and herbalist who explores themes of the occult, nature, and paganism in his art.
As a priestess Síol first connected with The Morrighan in 2009. Morrighan, or Morrigu, refers to the one but also the multifaceted Goddess of Ireland, namely the triad of goddesses Badb, Macha, and Morrigu, and sometimes appearing as the triad of Banba, Fodla, and Eriu. Still others, it’s a triad inclusive of the war goddesses Fea or Nemain.
This all weaves a complex mythology for The Morrigan. Síol’s The Transformational Oracle of the Morrighan is based on the triad of Badb, Macha, and Morrigu or Anand (sometimes Nemain). Each card explores one of the many key lessons connected to The Morrighan.
The deck consists of 48 cards subdivided into 3 categories: 12 aspect cards, 12 energy cards, and 24 symbol cards. For those who want to see the artist’s hand, you certainly will in these hand-drawn graphite illustrations. The accents of color that come up in a reading, in a landscape of grayscale, adds an inexplicable beauty and enchantment when you divine with these cards.
Aspect cards relate to the roles or disguises of The Morrighan and reveal the main influences of the situations you’re divining about. These are The Crone, The Healer, The Lover, The Motivator, The Prophetess, The Provider, The Queen, The Seducer, The Shapeshifter, The Sorceress, The Warrior Queen, and The Washer of the Ford.
The Shapeshifter, for example, is about adaptation to circumstances, and how to mask and how to use perception and appearance to achieve victory. The Sorceress is about exploring your many talents and putting them to use to create complex change.
Energy cards relate to time, emotions, and stages of development of the matter at hand. Subdivided further within the Energy cards are 4 cards for the seasons, 4 cards for the elements, and 4 cards for the moon phases. These cards get very specific with their divinatory results.
For example, pulling The Summer card meanings it’s only a short wait before manifestation results, whereas The Winter card would indicate stagnation, passivity, the need for introspection, and a longer wait. The Earth card symbolizes stability while The Water card is about flow, instability, and fluidity. The Waxing Moon card denotes expansion and growth, while The Waning Moon means the present energy impacting the situation is on its way out.
Symbol cards shed more detailed insight into the situation. There are 24 in total: Crown, Bones, Crow, Sword, Spear, Chariot, Fog, Battlefield, Chalice, Wolf, Horse, Eel, Cattle, Heifer, Warrior, Hero, Sun, Head of the Enemy, Shield, Ford, Meeting, Ax, Blood, and Hawthorn.
The Crown is an omen that The Morrighan is granting you victory, as one of Her chosen ones. The Crow is a messenger from the spirit world. It represents a divine calling. The Sword is your defenses. The Fog is the unknown. The Shield is protection, safety, but also retreat, silence, and finding shelter.
The deck comes with a guidebook that’s beautifully produced, a short and concise read, but dense with information. The opening chapter introduces you to the historical and cultural context of The Morrighan, then gets into explanations for how to interpret each card.
For every Aspect card entry there’s instructions for a ritual to help you attune to that particular aspect of The Morrighan. There’s also helpful instructions for the total beginner if you’d like to consecrate your oracle deck, and then there’s a handful of card spreads to try out.
In terms of production value, the cards are a standard finish, so they’re a bit glossy. That also means they fan across your reading table smoothly, with effortless glide. This is my favorite way to divine with these cards– fan the deck out while reciting an invocation prayer to The Morrighan, present your question, and then feel the pull in your hand to draw the cards.
The 12 Aspect cards have a red card back design while the remainder cards are black. That’s because the red-backed Aspect cards are to be shuffled separately while the Energy and Symbol cards shuffled together. The Aspect card you pull for your reading identifies the main reason or influence while the black-backed cards you draw shed light into the details of the divination.
So, for example, the nine-card diagnostics spread taught in the guidebook instructs on pulling a single Aspect card (red-backed) into the center of the spread, then drawing from the remainder pile (black-backed) for the eight cards surrounding the center. By the way, I did find that the printing tone of the text in the guidebook is just a smidge on the light side for my middle-age eyes. =) So it isn’t the most comfortable for reading.
Here’s an example of how I like to use this deck for readings, and a general reading I did for our greater collective community– as a global society, where are we headed right now?
I fan out the red Aspect cards in a row, and then the black Energy and Symbol cards in a second row. Inspired by instructions found in the guidebook, I close my eyes, take a few deep breaths, and call for The Morrighan as I visualize a triad of goddesses: May the Great Queen The Morrighan bring inspiration, prophecy, and blessings of courage and prosperity. I pay homage to Badb, Macha, and Morrigu. Then repeat my inquiry.
I draw a single card from the red Aspect cards. In the above-pictured reading, that card is The Washer of the Ford. I then draw three cards from the Energy and Symbol cards, which yielded: The Wolf, The Waxing Moon, and The Winter.
The Washer of the Ford is one of the Morrighan’s disguises. This was a supernatural woman appearing in the ford of the rivers (a narrow place between the banks), washing blood from the armor and bodies of dead warriors. If this was seen before battle, it was an omen of imminent death. And yet if seen before battle, this was a sign to warriors to give it your all, because death by battle was the most honorable way to go.
The key lesson in this card is that of healing sorrows. It’s about experiencing what will initially feel like a great loss, but it is not a loss, and rather, a sacrifice. It is a sacrifice that spiritually purifies ourselves, with our contributions going toward the benefit of a greater good.
I pulled one Symbol card, The Wolf. The Wolf reminds us of the story of The Morrighan disguising herself as a gray wolf and attacking the hero Cu Chulainn. Here, The Wolf symbolizes alertness and the need to be mentally agile, make fast, sharp decisions, to be clever and cunning, and a sign to awaken your senses of observation before acting, and to be strategic.
The other two are Energy cards. The Waxing Moon tells me the divinatory message pertains to something that is about to happen, and therefore incoming on my Path. The Winter card tells me now is a time for planning, silence, inertia, passivity, and also to re-think strategies and course-correcting to avoid error.
These three cards together shed more detailed light on the prophecy given: Those of us who take on the mantle of being defenders and protectors of our community have a big fight ahead of us, one that isn’t going to leave us unscathed. And yet here is a call to give it your all anyway. “Winter is coming…” (I know, I know, that’s so overplayed now…)
The Transformational Oracle of The Morrighan is a beautiful, powerful spiritual tool for those seeking to connect with the Three Morrigna. Síol did her research and consolidates popular tales and cultural references pertaining to the Phantom Queen in an information-packed guide that you can finish reading in one sitting.
As of this writing the deck set you see pictured here can be purchased directly from the creator for $50. Click on the link below for more product information. The set comes with a deck of 48 silver-edged cards, a custom pouch, and the guidebook.
Order The Transformational Oracle of The Morrighan
FTC Disclosure: In accordance with Title 16 of the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations Part 255, “Guides Concerning Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising,” I received these decks from the creator for prospective review. Everything I’ve said here is sincere and accurately reflects my opinion.