Continuing lines and pythian gifts

Motivated weeks ago by Camelia Elias I had the idea to create a spread inspired by my contribution to 21+1 The Fortuneteller’s Rules. By weeks ago I mean back in December. During most of December I was in a distinct Sibylline mood, thinking on the annunciation of the divine light and the doom of the apocalypse entwined with these revelations.

For context see these following links:

I was also reading Danny Nemu’s excellent book, Neuro-Apocalypse, so you can understand somewhat what was playing around in my mind. In essence, an apocalypse is a veil shattering revelation that uncovers what is hidden. “ORIGIN Old English, via Old French and ecclesiastical Latin from Greek apokalupsis, from apokaluptein ‘uncover, reveal,’ from apo- ‘un-’ + kaluptein ‘to cover.’” How else to encounter the divine light but through the apocalypse? For me, divination is a tool that facilitates apocalypses, instances of revelation. With all this in mind and considering my 21+1 contribution, I birthed this spread.

In true Sibylline mode I have titled the spread, The Vision of the Oracle.

Pythian Delphic Oracle Sibyl Greece Oracle of Delphi
Paestan red-figure bell-krater depicting the Delphic oracle sitting atop her tripod, circa 330 BC. With my superimposed tarot card images.
Priestess of Delphi Pythian Oracle Sibyl Delphic Orace
Priestess of Delphi (1891) by John Collier, showing the Pythia sitting on a tripod with vapor rising from a crack in the earth beneath her.

I envisioned the shape of this spread following the shape of the Pythian tripod, “The Pythia would chew laurel leaves and bay leaves, drink from the sacred spring and wear a crown of laurel while sitting on a tripod adorned with laurel over a fissure in the cellar of the temple (Sourvinou-Inwood, 233).” “The Oracle then descended into the adyton (Greek for “inaccessible”) and mounted her tripod seat, holding laurel leaves and a dish of Kassotis spring water into which she gazed.”

The image of the tripod and a vessel or curved dish merged in my mind’s eye, I began to see both the Pythia on the tripod and the vessel with water mirroring the other. Meaning that, just as the oracle sits on the tripod and divines, so the vessel used encapsulates the same meaning. From within the vessel, the waters, and from without, the vapors mix to rise and play with the visions of the diviner. In like manner the diviner sits on the tripod and she is the water that experiences the oracle as her body and sight entwine with the vapors around her. Then she speaks and the utterance pronounces the oracle.

Speaking specifically of the spread, it functions both as the oracle’s tripod and the vessel. There are three cards at the bottom in the shape of a basin (at least that is my intention for the spread) and two cards moving upward that mirror the vapors  of revelation. The two flanking cards are the initial instigators that mirror each other, the center pillar three cards are the revelation and the answer. This is a spread for feeling your way through to the answer, letting your eyes and mind move with the rhythm of the forms sans restraint. It focuses on apocalypses, on sharp revelations. There are no defined questions for each position. The shape of the spread defines the intention. The spread’s clear aim is to sharpen the vision, to sharpen the words, to sharpen your inner trust, and especially to sharpen truths.

Delphic Oracle Pythia Pythian oracle Delphi
The Delphic Oracle. Kylix by the Kodros painter, c. 440-430 BCE. From the Collection of Joan Cadden.

Now I will take the spread for a spin. Context: I am currently pining after an obscure Italian deck by artist Franco Anichini, a deck created to raise funds for the Sacred Heart Institute, Fantarocco (Images can be viewed by following the link). The deck would would be purchased from Italy and I would have to pay the price of the deck, which is not modest, plus the shipping. Now my birthday is coming up soon, and despite going through certain financial restrictions at the moment, I really want to add this deck to my small collection of Marseille type decks. I asked the cards about this situation, framing it from the angle of revelations.

Question: What is the truth behind my desire to purchase the Fantarocco deck?

The spanish tarot fournier tarot decks spain
The Spanish Tarot, published by Heraclio Fournier, Vitoria, Spain.

The two mirroring cards demonstrate the obvious, I want to seize the opportunity to indulge in spending for myself. The revealing column illustrates that the truth behind my extravagant spending desires is that I feel at odds with myself, frustrated at what is not moving and unsatisfied. Displacing my desire for change upon the purchase of an obscure tarot deck fulfills a fleeting desire instead of the real desire. In other words, my deck lust is all about displaced desire.

There you go, reading the cards for apocalypses.

Freely play with the spread at your leisure and may it serve as a drop or a ripple in the well of your craft, and may it facilitate revelations.



  • Apocalypse definition from the New Oxford American Dictionary.
  • Both “Paestan red-figure bell-krater depicting the Delphic oracle sitting atop her tripod, circa 330 BC” & “Priestess of Delphi (1891) by John Collier, showing the Pythia sitting on a tripod with vapor rising from a crack in the earth beneath her” taken from wikipedia: Pythia
  • “The Delphic Orcle. Kylix by the Kodros painter, c. 440-430 BCE.”
    From the Collection of Joan Cadden from
  • The featured image is from Pixabay and is a Temple in Delphi, Greece. Walkerssk.
  • Read Camelia Elias’s spread.


Mist and Aether La Maga Etsy mist and ether


Published by Natalia

An eternal lover of the literary arts, I am fascinated by words and their power. I am a diviner that writes, reads, enchants, dances and dreams.

5 thoughts on “Continuing lines and pythian gifts

  1. LOL no effing way. Haha. I only reference Pythia when my husband made the comparison (between myself and the head oracle) and now I was just about to market myself as the Oracle of Sydney, because that’s where I live. Hahahaha


      1. It sounds good! I was thinking, after being inspired thinking on this topic to add bay and laurel leaves to my divination sessions. But perhaps maybe I’d have to call on Apollo? And no, definitely not stomping on anyone’s toes, us diviners are all in the service of the oracular😊.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Honestly, go with whatever you feel moved to. I only use words, I have no other tools or ingredients in my kit. Unless I am legit cooking something to eat. lol. (sheepish grin)

        Liked by 1 person

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