Meera Tarot immediately stands out from the crowd, and as soon as I saw it, I realized I had nothing quite like it in my current collection. The art has postmodern avant-garde somewhat Cubist take on medieval Hinduism, rendered with bold, vivid colors and emotive geometric forms.
The deck’s namesake “Meera” means prosperous, virtuous, and fearless, in disregard of social conventions; it can reference a devotee of Krishna, one who is a mystic and a creative.
A compelling thesis of this deck is the binate feminine and masculine within each one of us, and that dichotomy’s ever shifting balance. How do you become self-aware of that internal exchange and how does one integrate the two toward self-actualization? The narratives within these cards express the Twin Flame Journey not as one soul in two bodies, but two souls within one body–thus you’ll see the recurring symbolism of the yin and yang.
The Fool card corresponds with Oorja, meaning energy, a feminine personification of source power. The butterfly featured on this card signifies transformation and spirit allies with a vested interest in your journey. The pixie dust is the omnipresent power of wisdom.
Astrology is prominently woven throughout the cards. The Majors with planetary correspondences also radiate pictorially with the zodiac signs those planets rule. The Fool card, for instance, is encoded from both the planetary force of Uranus and the zodiac force of Aquarius. The Magician card is encoded from both the planetary force of Mercury and the signs it rules– Gemini and Virgo.
The Tower card, which in Golden Dawn correspondences is attributed to Mars, features the signs it rules, Aries and Scorpio. Likewise, you see the glyph for Leo in Key 19: The Sun card, embedded into the center of the sun.
The Magician is Adi Shakti, known as the First Supreme Power. Shakti signifies energy that is innovative, sustaining, but can also be devastating. She is the Great Divine Mother but also Mahaamaya– The Greatest Delusion.
The Emperor card features Krishna; the Hierophant is depicted by Guruvi, a spiritual teacher in the feminine, the Lovers is Kama-Rati, Rati being the Hindu goddess of love and desire, while Kamadeva is the god of love.
The Lovers card as interpreted in the Meera Tarot takes on a more “romance-passion” theme rather than “choices.” The Chariot card features Akanksha, personification of hope and ambition.
Key 8: Strength is Durga, the warrior form of Parvati, who battles and triumphs over evil; this is the aggressive manifestation of the protective mother goddess. Key 9: The Hermit is Saraswati, goddess of wisdom, learning, and music.
Keywords printed on the cards will empower beginners, and those who integrate astrology into their readings will appreciate the glyph references included on the cards. The astrological associations merge zodiac sign correspondences and planetary rulers, traditional and modern. For instance, Key 13: Death prominently features the glyph for Pluto, the modern planetary ruler of Scorpio, and Key 14: Temperance features Jupiter, the planetary ruler of Sagittarius, and so on.
I’m so grateful for the guidebook that comes with this deck, where the Hindu themes and iconography attributed to each tarot archetype is explained in detail. The Five of Cups conveys the theme of Niraasha, the Hindi word meaning to be disappointed by someone or something, to feel frustration and to reflect upon past hurt or regrets.
The Six of Cups conveys the theme Smaran, a Sanskrit word for memories and remembrance. The depiction is of Lord Krishna reflecting on his divine love for Radha, consort to Krishna. Or how the Seven of Cups conveys Bhraanti, a Sanskrit word for deceptions or misleading perceptions.
Use of color throughout the deck is deeply symbolic, like the spots of blue in the suit of Pentacles where there are underlying elements of creativity or wisdom, while remaining predominantly green and brown. Siddharth, the given name of the Buddha, means wealth, money, and prosperity, is attributed to the Nine of Pentacles and Virgo energy.
I forgot to mention the strong use of animal symbolism throughout the deck. Like the falcon in the Nine of Pentacles representing the power to control emotions and thoughts, or the spirit companions throughout the Majors.
While the illustrations depart from RWS and speak strongly to Patil’s own style as an artist, the architecture is distinctly RWS. The courts maintain the classical titles of Page, Knight, Queen, and King.
That being said, some of the astrological associations ascribed to the Meera Tarot are quite innovative. Case in point, the Knight of Pentacles, per the guidebook, corresponds with Aquarius, Capricorn, and Pisces, while the Page, Queen, and King all correspond just to Capricorn.
Likewise, the Page, Queen, and King of Swords all correspond with the Air sign Libra, whereas the Knight of Swords, the active element of the suit’s court, corresponds with Libra, Scorpio, and Sagittarius.
I love that the Page of Swords is embodied by Tarunyaa, meaning youthful energy, with the card depicting a mistress of earth magic and mysteries. The Knight of Swords is embodied by Krutika, a Hindu feminine name meaning to be action-oriented, to be courageous albeit one who is indecisive. The Queen of Swords features Kali, and the King of Swords, Shiva.
The Ace of Swords features the Queen of Jhansi, a feminist icon in India and freedom fighter. The astrological influences here are Aquarius, Gemini, and Libra, the glyphs of which you’ll find integrated into the card composition and noted in the guidebook.
The Three of Swords conveys its traditional RWS meaning but adds a poignant layer– the tears in the woman’s eyes as she tries to heal the wounded deer, who also sheds tears, are tears of empathic pain. And note the subtle detail of the hunter’s silhouette in the background.
Wow, scroll back up and look at the color-scape on that Six of Swords!
There’s an art style here that’s reminiscent of Lady Freida Harris and post-war Mondrian-esque color blocking with bold black outlining, expressing Hindu principles through highly conceptual pop art. Patil’s style is unconventional and dynamic. As art, it’s distinct. As a divinatory tool, the cards read beautifully, with an effortless, easy assist from the keywords.
There is a delightful, impressive balance to the Meera Tarot, where you can take a mystical approach or a psychological approach to the cards. For either approach, these cards will read effortlessly for you, be that the color symbolism, astrological correspondences, or keywords that will be the key to unlock your creative-intuition. And for anyone who has wanted to deep-dive into a study of Hindu principles and mythology, this is a perfect deck for that, with a comprehensive guidebook that consolidates all the fundamentals.
You can learn more about Runali Patil’s art at runasart.com.
Order your copy of the Meera Tarot deck and guidebook set on Etsy, here.
By the way, it’s pretty incredible how budget-friendly this indie deck is, at $39, and free shipping in the US. That’s amazing!
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 this deck for prospective review. Everything I’ve said here is sincere and accurately reflects my opinion.
2 thoughts on “Meera Tarot by Runali Patil”
So beautiful. I really would love this deck.
Wow, wow, wow! I need this deck in my life! Thanks so much for reviewing it!