Psychonauts Playing Cards by Joker and the Thief


Namaste and welcome to Joker and the Thief’s campaign for Psychonauts Playing Cards, our next big custom deck! What is a Psychonaut? – From the Greek “Psyche” meaning soul. And “Nautes” meaning sailor.  A psychonaut explores the subconscious mind via altered states of consciousness. Typically induced by meditation, psychedelic substances, or holotropic breathing techniques. A psychonaut explores reality beyond the perception of the five senses, and documents the experience. The spiritual insights gained while on a psychedelic trip are then integrated into normal life. A psychonaut is guided by divinity, and seeks the understanding of reality itself. So, come and take a journey with us into the depths of the mind!

Psychonauts is a nostalgic tribute to 1960s psychedelia and new age spiritualism. The time when Eastern gurus, meditation, and yoga first seeped into Western mainstream consciousness. A time of peace, love and flower power!

Tackling the psychedelic theme meant needing to focus heavily on balance. You may be familiar with the typical multicoloured, kaleidoscopic imagery associated with modern psychedelic art. These works often have more colours than a rainbow, so we intentionally designed this deck to be cohesive in terms of its colour palette. We utilised a combination of vibrant Pantone colours and metallic ink, but in a fashion that is more in line with psychedelic art from the 1960s – keeping this deck consistent with the aesthetic of our other products and brand image.

Vibrant and bursting with colour! Psychonauts continues Joker and the Thief’s tradition of badass aces of spades. We like to think of this ace as a warped, alternate reality version of the spade from our original deck. Similar to the original ace of spades, the Psychonauts ace of spades features coiling serpents – ready to strike!

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All orders of 4, 6 or 10 decks will be shipped in one one of our storage gift boxes for free!

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The Jack of Hearts features an LSD motif, a substance that fuelled the new age movement of the 1960s.

The Jack of Clubs features magic mushroom motifs – used in ritual by ancient cultures all over the world.

The Jack of Diamonds references the peyote cactus, notably used in ceremony by the native indigenous cultures of North America.

The Jack of Spades makes reference to the mother plant ayahuasca used by shamans in the Amazon Rainforest.

The Queen of Hearts represents the confrontation of the self. She holds an eye in one hand and a snake in the other, symbolising the struggle of her spiritual awakening and keeping her negative past self and behaviours at bay.

The Queen of Clubs represents self awareness. She is aware of her own mortality staring back through her mirror. She is receptive to the truth and wisdom of the universe symbolised by the book she clutches close to her chest.

The Queen of Diamonds makes reference to the song, Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds by the Beatles. She proudly brandishes a girl’s best friend – diamonds. She represents the ego’s gravitation to the material world.

The Queen of Spades represents the suppression of the self. Featuring the broken mirror – a broken state of mind. She sinks into a lower state of consciousness.

The King of Hearts reaches within the chasms of himself and brings his heart forward. A symbol of vulnerability. He represents all those who put their heart on the line and work on themselves.

The King of Clubs is a nod to the original Psychonaut, Terrence McKenna. The first true modern navigator of the spirit world. The King of Clubs carries his likeness.

The King of Diamonds is a reference to the guru Osho. This crazy king reflects the madness that often followed Osho throughout his life. A spiritual leader of extreme wealth and prosperity. Members of his commune were often armed.

The King of Spades is a tribute to one of our favourite spiritual teachers of the 20th century. Alan Watts’ philosophical messages are still pertinent today and common in self development circles.

The Joker and the Thief. Our signature set of Jokers. A recurring motif of our playing cards is to substitute one of two jokers for a Joker card and a Thief card.


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