An article by SoulCollage® Founder Seena B. Frost (1932-2016)
I’m writing today about SoulCollage® and its suits, because I know many of you are interested in this topic, and I would like to share a few of my thoughts about using the four SoulCollage® suits and about changing them, enlarging on them, or eliminating them.
There are an infinite number of ways to identify, name, and also organize the Neters (inner voices) that are active and evolving in our conscious and unconscious minds. In the SoulCollage® process, I have offered one way of organizing our many Neters: four very comprehensive, flexible categories called Committee, Community, Companions, and Council. Plus three Transpersonal Cards, Source, Witness, and SoulEssence, that symbolize the Oneness or Unity from which all these forms manifest.
In short, these are the requirements for calling a process SoulCollage®:
- The use of visual images intuitively chosen by a person to give form to the many diverse energies manifesting in their particular life.
- To creatively, over time, embody these energies, gifting each one with its own special card.
- To have its creator imaginatively step into one image and speak in its energetic voice to identify it and answer questions.
So why have suits at all? First, they are organizational categories, and when you have lots of cards, it helps to organize them. Not essential, but useful. However, there are other reasons. For me, the primary one is that the suits help you stretch to include in your deck inner voices you might not have suspected were part of your Soul.
We are complex beings, full of energetic voices from visible and invisible realms. Some unrecognized voices have profound effects on the ways we live and love and feel and think. The suits suggest areas to mine for what might be hidden.
Second, suit organization helps when you do a reading. If suits are marked in some way on the backs of your cards, you can draw one from each suit so you will get perspectives from different realms of Soul. If you have only a few cards in your Council but dozens in your Committee, you will likely draw mostly local story answers unless you draw a card specifically from your Council suit.
Sometimes a Community or Companion Neter synchronicity will arise with a surprising insight, so it helps to have them present. (Nice backings make your deck more beautiful, but if you prefer, you can just use a sticker or a stamp on the back to identify the suit.)
Third, if you are loaning cards to someone to use in a reading, as in an introduction, you can easily take out cards that you don’t want them to draw, such as Community cards. I have many of those cards and I remove them all before someone draws from my deck.
Fourth, it is easier to name your Neters and continue to investigate each one as a unique, embodied, and specific energy when you sense which suit it lives in. There are other reasons to organize and name your cards-you fill in the blanks. Still, it is not essential.
Now let’s look at the arguments against suits. There are good reasons not to pin our energies down into suits, or even not to name them. Energies change and evolve… absolutely. I hope they do! Some Committee members may reveal an archetypal energy on occasion that surprises you. Some cards may invite energies from two or even three suits to be represented, even though the card only depicts a singular energy.
So suits can’t be rigid; they must be flexible and inclusive just like our whole Soul is evolving to be. We live in a very fluid, evolving divine soup of creativity. Nevertheless, some form of organization is useful as our deck grows. So just choose the strongest energy in a card and mark the back with that suit.
What about adding suits? Many of you have talked about adding a Dream suit. Other people mentioned a Journey suit, and I can really relate to that word. In fact, I see my whole deck as depicting my Journey, and the suits are groups of my Soul making that journey together. Another person spoke of a suit for Saints, and another mentioned a Magic and Mystery suit. All these are very possible, especially in your own private work with your cards, or if you are doing specialized SoulCollage® workshops on dreams or the elements, or if you are working with certain groups or life situations. Then certainly sub-suits are fine to introduce, and the regular suits can be kept in the background.
For example, one SoulCollage® Facilitator used the Journey suit to contain cards created around one person’s dying process. This feels very appropriate. If you work with many dreams and want a sub-suit for them, that’s fine, too; although, as SoulCollage® Facilitator Audrey Chowdhury says, “most dream characters can find a place in one of the suits.” I would suggest a sub-suit in Community for actual saints who were humans, and this group could have a partly different backing if that is desired. I’d have to see the Neters in Magic and Mystery, but it sounds like they may be Larger Story beings from the Council realm. One of you spoke about including “power animals” along with the chakra animals in the Companion suit, and that’s better than creating a new suit in my mind.
I do want to remind you all of one important thing in SoulCollage®: we make cards from images of energetic beings that are especially active in our unique Souls. Each of our Souls is unique, and the collection of Neters that claim us, guide us, and challenge us is bound to be different. And they change.
So! I hope I have not confused you even more, or stomped on anyone’s creativity! You are certainly welcome to organize your personal deck in any creative way that fits for you. Get to know the four suits well so that you can show see how diverse energies will fit into them.
The suits are there to help us arrive at a deeper and wider understanding of the Many part of this process. They are flexible and evolving, and there is no right or wrong in how people choose to “suit” their cards. And if a person doesn’t want to “suit” them at all, he or she is still absolutely welcome in the SoulCollage® community!
One final reminder. All these many parts are bits of the One, and all their edges are permeable, blending into one another. Then, as SoulCollage® Facilitator Ann Doherty says, “Go with the flow, my sisters and brothers. As we evolve so do our cards and decks.
Originally published in the free monthly SoulCollage® Community Update 2013.
Your SoulCollage® Cards: Keys to Transformation Video
Audrey Chowdhury, M.S., ATR-BC, SoulCollage® Facilitator and Art Therapist, takes your SoulCollage® experience to another level by explaining the importance of adding suits to your deck.