Connected and Free, The Alchemist's Oracle 2nd Edition - Deck Review
February 11, 2017
The 2nd Edition of this rather fabulous oracle (for my review of the original, click here!) is now up to 55 cards, having enjoyed the addition of 5 new cards, and a complete redesign/redraw of a further 10!
The card size is the same, but the quality has been somewhat improved, not least by going for a matte finish rather than the high shine of the original. It means that the cards are slightly more flexible (the originals were quite stiff, and took some breaking in), and were of a thickness that caused some querents shuffling issues - but no more! The 2nd Edition beauties are now smoother, shuffle better, but are still a robust thickness that means they will last a lifetime!
I'm conscious that the differences between my original-original 1st Edition, and the 'slightly modified' 1st Edition deck means that the 2nd Edition is even more pronounced in its differences for me, which is a rather lovely surprise...the cards that appear to be updated between my two versions are Heart, High Flying, Decisions, You Are Exactly Where You Need To Be, Opportunity, Conflict, Responsibility, Fun, Abundance, Strength, and Communication. I must admit, I sped through the cards when I first received them, to check that my favourite cards were still there, and 2 were changed by the redraws (Heart and Decisions), and that's a real shame, because the original Decisions card was one of my all-time favourite card designs across any deck - Oracle or Tarot - reminding me of a memory of lying in a copse of trees and looking up at the sky through their branches, and watching as leaves and petals fluttered down from above, giving a sense of movement, even in that blessed moment of stillness. This is the one point where the change of coating is a slight drawback, as it means I can't slip my original Decisions card into the deck, without it sticking out like a sore thumb when shuffling.
The new cards added to the deck are Feminine, Masculine, Sensual Expression, Soul Knowing, and Spiritual Suffering - 2 'practical identifiers', and 3 more spiritual/zen marker cards - and these are a welcome addition to the deck - it's not that it felt that as if there was anything 'missing' from the original deck, but now that they've been added, it's a real "of course, how come they weren't in the original, it's so obvious?!" burst of hindsight, to complement the foresight provided by its hefty oracle goodness! Soul Knowing and Spiritual Suffering, particularly, are two amazingly drawn cards, that really resonate in their design, and I wholeheartedly welcome their addition to the fold!
The 148-page guidebook contains the same wealth of information in this version, as in the previous one, with the notable addition of crystal suggestions to go with each card, which can be added in for reading or meditation purposes - it's a lovely addition: no doubt crystal fiends will have their own ideas as to the energies that a particular card conjures up, but for those with limited experience with crystals, or who are looking for an energetic link between card and stone, these are a greater starting point/pointer for the noviciate!
If you haven't picked up a copy of Connected and Free, The Alchemist's Oracle, then now is a great time to dive in! If you have a copy of the 1st Edition, then the deck is sufficiently different to offer something new to the collector or appreciator of good, solid Oracle work respectively!
The amazing 'Connected and Free, The Alchemist's Oracle' is available from Lauren Aletta at her Inner Hue Website (along with lots of other lovely content and positive vibes galore!)