Graven Images Oracle – Natalie Zaman and Katherine Clark
“Tomb images carry weighty traditional and personal symbolism and lend themselves as independent tools of meditation and divination. Indeed, the images bring us closer to that portal from which we have become estranged, but cannot avoid.” – From the Graven Images Oracle companion book
With unique vision and stark yet riveting funerary photos, Natalie Zaman turns her lens to stone memorials, revealing an unusual glimpse into the power of monument symbolism on the human psyche. Whether to access insight or information, comfort or closure, the Graven Images Oracle is a comprehensive, innovative tool for uncovering the answers to questions both mundane and profound.
Coupled with the divinatory expertise and explanations of pagan teacher Katherine Clark, the tombstones captured by Ms. Zaman are a myriad of mystical markers—from weathered friends to alabaster countenances, stoic marble to engraved ciphers, each has a story to tell and a whisper to overhear.
Stars, flowers, cherubs and wheat—pointing fingers, wreaths, columns and religious icons—all timeless symbols pointing to deeper truths and the foreverness of spirit grace the black-bordered cards of this unusual oracle.
Ms. Zaman and Ms. Clark have divided the Graven Images Oracle into five “suits” of 14 cards each: Divine, Physical, Mental, Social and Emotional. Within each of the suits are two continuums: seven cards dedicated to the “light” (positive) progression of the suit with seven cards reflecting the “shadow” (negative or baser) progression. In addition to these 70 cards, there is one called The Wall—a card instructing querents to stop the reading immediately.
Further adding to the nuance of this oracle, there are several spreads included in the 110-page companion book—most notably the 6-card Pentagram Layout. In addition to the funerary photo, each card depicts a title and letter/number code corresponding to its interpretation in the book. A simple but attractive tree engraving serves as the card backing.
Although I attempted to use the Graven Images Oracle several times over three months, unfortunately I found it be inaccurate…indeed, way off the mark (even when attempting to interpret the message metaphorically). Once, I was feeling upbeat and expansive and thought I’d draw a card for general insight. I drew a very negative card that didn’t reflect my experience or demeanor— neither at the time nor even into the future.
Given its novel design and attractive cards, I truly wanted this deck to work for me, which is why I gave it months to try it out. However, the nuts and bolts for comprehensive divinatory insight seem to be all there—so if you’re drawn by the imagery and subject matter of the Graven Images Oracle, by all means consider acquiring it. At the very least, you’ll have an inventive deck like none other on the market.