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Hoodoo Tarot Mystic Storyteller Tarot Erika's Lenormand of Hope Inclusive representation decks La Panthere Studio

The Importance of Inclusivity and Diverse Representation

Let's talk about inclusivity and the importance of diverse representation in metaphysical media. For many years the metaphysical community has been dominated by white voices, specifically white males, even when discussing various other cultures and religious practices. In the metaphysical community, we can find a predominance of white voices evident in spiritual leaders, books, and decks. More recently, there has been an influx of female-presenting white creatives in the metaphysical publishing industry, while it is increasingly difficult to find books and decks published by BIPOC on Black and Brown heritage and culture. Not only that, but works published by non-whites are often not advertised as well as those published by white authors, making them that much more difficult to find.

For a little background, I used to work as the manager of a metaphysical store in Tallahassee, Florida. One of my primary jobs was ordering books and tarot cards. I always accepted requests from customers so that I could meet their needs to the best of my ability. After all, if you don't know what your customers are looking for, how can you order products that fit their needs? I received a vast amount of requests for books on Hoodoo, Yoruba, Ifa, and Voodoo, as well as decks by Black and Brown authors or featuring voices and figures more relatable to People of Color. If you couldn't tell from the introduction, these works are a little difficult to find. It often takes an internet deep-dive to find spiritual books written by Black and Brown authors and decks that are not only inclusive, but also by BIPOC authors and artists. While finding diverse voices has become a little easier over the years, there is still a lot more media published by white authors.

This brings me to what I really want to dissect - inclusivity and diverse representation. It is so important for everyone to see themselves in the media they consume, especially when dealing with something as personal as spirituality. We need representation for all. Sometimes, specifically in deck artwork, attempts at inclusivity don't land the way they are intended and it makes it that much more obvious that the author or artist isn't familiar with the people they're trying to include. Perpetuating stereotypes in the media must stop, especially in the metaphysical industry. We need more decks and books that celebrate the beauty of all cultures.

At La Panthère Studio, we want everyone to feel seen and appropriately represented, which is why we have a collection specifically for African heritage in the shop. This collection contains decks by Black authors such as Erika's Lenormand of Hope and The Hoodoo Tarot. You'll also find books that tackle racism in tarot such as Tarot for the Hard Work as well as books on African and Caribbean heritage, and African-American culture such as African American Magick and Orishas, Goddesses, and Voodoo Queens. These books and decks are only the beginning of our desire to lift Black and Brown voices, and we hope they'll get you started in expanding your metaphysical media. 

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