The Travel Diary in the Closest Farway Land is the tale of 7 successive encouters with archetypal figures, as the traveler is making her way into the depths and back to the surface.
They were turned into a set of 7 cards and completed with Florence Devereux's set, to become the Loba Cards: A conversation between Taïs and Florence in the form of a 14 Tarot Card set and a show : Turn Around in the Nipple Dome, during which members of the audience could get a personal reading.
The Loba Cards
The Loba Cards were made by two women.
As they walked together on a moist forest floor, they met a strange man who had been sleeping in their chest.
He showed them their life was a vast land of many stories. And like all stories, theirs had been sung before and would be sung after.
He invited them to walk through their kingdom of tales, find comfort in ancient echoes and the fertile soil of dreams.
With coulours and shapes pre-existing them, the women and the sleeping man played on the moist forest floor.
Like an infinite puzzling recipe, they built, destroyed and rebuilt stories in which they saw themselves move like water.
Their dreams endlessly morphed into new and old ones,
resonating with others or surprising them with novelty.
But mostly they found Joy and decided to make a set of cards to keep playing once they’d return from the moist forest floor.
How To Play
Sit down. Feel your bum on the chair, the taste in your mouth and everything in between.
Hold the pack in your hands. Close your eyes.
Imagine your life story strung along a piece of thread.
Behind you the thread stretches out,
along it all the events of your life so far hang.
In front of you, the thread stretches out,
with your future story woven in.
Pay attention to what is attracting your imagination.
Select a moment along the thread to focus on.
Try to inhabit fully the way this moment makes you feel.
Then pull three cards from the pack. Turn them over.
What can you see in each card? What can you read from the way they relate to each other and do they weave a narrative?
Just like you would interpret your own dream,
let the cards float in your mind and open a new window in your story.
You can take a look at each card's description in this book whilst letting any links, connections and new associations come to you.
The 7 Archetypes
The Diver or The Fearfull Child
The diver is going into the depths to meet death. She is blind and unconscious of how much she needs to learn to truly see. She is blind and unconscious and this is why she dares to dive into the depths. The diver is high vulnerability as well as pure courage. Her blindness mirrors the death the diver experiences when she reaches the depths. Her body and mind abandon her, she is shed from her identity, she experiences a complete amnesia. Death as a purge, a release. Her own depths pulled out by the depths, she’s emptied. As the limits of her being break down, as she looses the sense of what she is, she visits freely what lies beyond herself, the pure essence of reality. She is one with it for she is nothing and all at the same time. That is what allows her to fully experience an atmosphere of complete infinity, whilst also taking her to the limits of what she is capable of: Her mind and body being shut down, her eyes being blinded and her soul out of reach, she can’t comprehend, grasp, conceptualise and bring back this knowledge with her. The diver is profoundly fearful and ignorant. She lies in a terrifying void, a new space for new knowledge. She has lost her sense of self and does not know what to hold on to. She seeks for help outwards and inwards but there is nothing to be found. She is left to drown until she reaches the limits of her own essence. The diver is severely humbled yet offered the precious gift of truly experiencing herself.
This is when she becomes
The Lioness orThe First Island
The Lioness is a rooting protection and peace. She is the encounter with the pure, untouched, divine part of the soul, the one that can never be taken over. She lives in the depths of the soul and stays there.
She is still. Once she’s awaken, she never falls back to sleep completely. The more we listen to her calm breathing, the more we get to know her. Her protection and peace simply steams from being undoubtfully aware of her own soul and existence. She confidently fights the primitive fear of death, the fear of no longer existing, the doubt in one’s own sense of self. She is sitting eyes closed, looking inwards, embraced by the deepest roots of the soul. After meeting the Lioness, she start climbing up the ladder, slowly reintegrating parts of her self. She is still disembodied, but the mind wakes up
and she becomes
The Insomniac or The Thought Manufacturer
The insomniac is born from the primitive force dwelling in the part of the mind that responds to fear with a fight or flight mechanism. It is in constant alert. The insomniac is highly gifted for conceptualisation. She is creative and thirsty to understand whatever comes her way. She can define, analyse and rationally define anything. Beyond her high intellectual intelligence, she is the sentinel. She always make sure that the self is safe. Even when everything else is asleep, she can always be relied on. She calculates, anticipates, uses strategies and foresees. Like a guardian angel, she often acts without our knowing, protects us without expecting anything in return. Although she is useful and should be respected she is not to be constantly fully trusted or listened to since her only agenda is to avoid anything that could be unsafe. Thus she can lead us to miss important experiences or discoveries. When disembodiesd, disconnected from the heart, she gets lost in her creations and looses sight of what is conceptualized, intellectualized, imagined, and what is actually experienced. When disembodiesd, disconnected from the heart, the fears are short circuited in the mind without any way out. The insomniac is locked in and rulled by them. Her panic keeps the mind awake and the body away, and she nurtures the fears through an incessant dialogue with them. The insomniac’s state of panic is exhausting, she is in a constant battle for sleep, the mind refusing to let go, refusing to shut down in order to not be vulnerable or taken over by the constant threat. When the mind finally opens to the heart, when embodied again,
the insomniac quietens, tenderly carried by the strong arms of
The Corpo Real or The Sleep Walker
The Corpo Real is a return to the body, an awakening of emotions and sensations in their entirety. The Corpo Real is empowered by owning and honoring her physicality and emotions. She feels the body, understands where it starts and stops. Thus she knows what are her boundaries, what is hers, whats is not. The Corpo Real teaches the language of dreams as well as the ability to perceive her sensuous environment. She holds the sacred symbolic language of the body, the body as conscious, living, intelligent physical matter. The Corpo Real can explore bodily memories transmitted from generations to generations. She can store and evacuate anything. Her knowledge is as old as her DNA, her ability to feel as strong as all the hearts of her ancestors brought together. She discreetly protects the mind and soul, keeping secret wounds silent until there is enough strength to face them. The Corpo Real is an unconditional friend. She knows what to do without needing any instructions. She has knowledge of things the mind isn’t conscious of. She teaches let go of analysis, she teaches that everything doesn’t need to be rationally understood or measured in order to have a true existence and effect. She teaches to trust, for she knows what she is doing. She knows how to heal. If we ask her with the language of the heart, the language of love, and let her do without trying to intervene, the sleep walker can transform and dissipate any fear, thanks to the intelligence of the body and the unconditional tenderness of the heart. When she is not heard or spoken to, the sleep walker leaves a sense of lack of love. For she holds the key to the heart, without her we can’t fully access the feeling of loving, nor the feeling of being loved. Without her we are not fully physically present to ourselves. Thus it creates a feeling and fear of absence, of abandonment. The Corpo Real whispers : The fear of abandonment and lack of love is be resolved inwards. It is not a thirst that will find a river outside of oneself. She knows that any pain finds resolution in the land of the body and heart. The Corpo Real knows that as long as the mind lives in the body, as long as the heart can speak and be heard freely, she will always feel loved by the love she herself carries.
And a dialectic unfolds with
The Dancer or The Humble and The Proud
The Dancer is moved by the Humble and Proud. The Humble - Faith in Love - and the Proud - Ego’s Fear-. The Dancer is in a constant movement going from one to the other. The Humble is pure love, an embracing compassion. Although she doesn’t ignore its existence, she can overcome darkness simply by refusing to converse with it. She is not afraid of what she is or isn’t. She’s focused on making peace. She seeks refuge in the heart. But she becomes the Proud when she is fearfully seeking Love. The Proud is constantly vulnerable to her own judgment towards herself. She doesn’t know trust nor acceptance. She is vulnerable to her own desires, she is vulnerable to her own fears, she is vulnerable to her own darkness for she is ashamed of them all. She feeds of anger for she thinks it can protect her from fears. She tries to hold on to permanence for she can’t find stillness in herself. She is possessive for she doesn’t feel she owns her own heart. The Humble and the Proud exist through their dual nature, but if the Dancer is not aware of their existence, they easily fall out of balance and the dance out of rythme. The Dancer finds life energy in the friction between the humble and the proud. Her movement opposes death. Giving in the beauty of her dance teaches the imperfection and impermanence of her nature.
She keeps dancing up to the surface and she becomes
The Singer or Inward Love
The Singer is reaching back to the surface, pulling light out of darkness. She seems to be doing so effortlessly, for she knows how to let go of what is out of her control. The Singer is not possessive nor attached, but she trusts and nurtures her wishes and intentions. The Singer is a movement from inwards to outwards The Singer holds and nurture a sacred space within herself from which she can draw strength, hope, energy and motivation. Yet she can also accept paralysis, stagnation, discouragement. drought. For she knows that singing is breathing, that inspiration requires expiration. That music is silence and life is death. The Singer sings for both darkness and light with detachment and self preservation. She has a multitude of different faces and melodies but she sings from one single heart. In her inward movement, the singer unconditionally accepts all of what she is. Thus she knows unconditional love. And in her outward movement, she can sing to others what she sings to herself. Yet she knows how to draw boundaries and protect herself. She is fierce and kind, she has self respect and compassion, for she knows anger, she knows pain, she knows her own darkness and sees the necessity of their existence. She is ready to fight and embrace She is ugly and beautiful She is a stream and a stone at the same time She is in constant movement, but holds stillness.
She reaches the surface, walks the land and becomes
The Explorer or Outward Love
The explorer is a full movement outwards. She has a solid but flowing essence, trusting a tangible sense of self, walking through unexplored lands. The land is dream like, it is constantly in movement, shaped and shaped again. Nothing is still nor fixed in the explorer’s land. Everything can be sculpted constantly. The outward movement of the explorer is in constant dialogue with the impermanence and responsive nature of the unexplored land. The explorer seeks mystery and poetry The explorer holds a lantern but has no eyes Her light is her sight She seeks truth in impermanence She seeks friction in stillness. She knows the true essence of fear and thus she is fearless. She faces the unexplored land with joy candor, elegance and respect for what is out of her comprehension. The explorer does not know anything about the land she travels. But she trusts her outwards movement, in which she finds joy and bliss.
She goes on for the sake of playing what is to be played.