“Epiphany, histrionics, catharsis, expeditious” – this is one heck of a testimonial!

Craig Browne

If you are in the business of providing a product or service, you will be familiar with receiving testimonials. It’s always gratifying to hear about how what you offer is helping people do what they need to do, and to learn what works and why.

But even after two decades of playing with image cards, I wasn’t ready for this one from Dr Murray. I knew I had to dig in, speak with him, and find out more.

Turns out there is a very deep-seated and vulnerable story behind his comments.

The cards are a surprisingly effective tool in addressing your inner turmoil and very helpful in clarifying your ambiguous moods or disposition. Every session with the cards facilitates an epiphany or realisation which would not be possible, for me, without CCS.

As an adolescent and adult male, I was reluctant to express my emotions but these cards afford you a safe system to evoke and externalise your feelings without histrionics or a noticeable change in your demeanour. This simple and tactile system is expeditious, accessible and above all convenient. 

In conclusion, an impactful but efficient instrument to facilitate catharsis and crystallise my nebulous emotionality or affective states. My favourite process to perform introspection. You need to feel it to heal it and CCS aids both!

Dr Murray

Let’s look at a few key phrases and why Dr Murray included them in his testimonial.

A safe system to evoke and externalise your feelings without histrionics

When I asked Dr Murray about this, he revealed that in his experience, sometimes when you externalise some emotions, this can affect the way you are perceived by others, which may discourage you from disclosing fully. He has found this to be particularly true in the professional world, where showing too much emotion can lead to you being “demeaned or belittled and it affects your professional standing and opportunities … but with the cards you don’t need to suppress or censor yourself.”

Vulnerably using himself as an example, he shared how he never knew his father because he committed suicide while his mother was pregnant with Dr Murray, and that this led him to suffer a similar, I his words “pathology and clinical depression” When he talked about this, he was called “a sook.”

He shared how the cards created a safe space for him to have conversations about these emotional things …

“I found it impactful, I didn’t have to cry, I didn’t have to pay 150 bucks to a therapist, I didn’t have to go through some mental breakdown to achieve a distillation of the essence of my issue. Which is powerful. It’s one of those things I wish I’d had earlier … If I have the cards I don’t need to suppress or censor what I want to say … they provide a safe, efficient, instrument to perform catharsis.”

I find this statement truly poignant. I am not a trained therapist, so I won’t comment on using CCS Cards vs seeing a therapist, but I am drawn to how Dr Murray believes that the cards allow him to share without censoring himself in an efficient way. He can be emotional without concern for how he may look to others. This echoes the idea that the cards can assume the (projective) role of a “third person”, providing a vehicle for someone to safely speak through.

My favourite process to perform introspection

Proudly clutching his CCS Jumbo Cards, Dr Murray said,

“Yes they are. I use them a lot. The cards really help me. I have the big cards and [once I do a selection] I leave them out just to remind me of the catharsis I have performed. It definitely does help. I did a celebration activity. I never used to celebrate, but after that, I now I do.”

Adolescents and adult males

I asked Dr Murray about using the cards with young and adult men. While he was mindful not to be sexist, he did feel that women are often better at expressing their emotions than men and that the cards could be a good way to help men express more fully.

I asked him what he might get a young man who was facing a challenge to try with the cards.

He said,

“Have a conversation with yourself:

  1. ask yourself to find a card that represents what’s bothering you
  2. find a card that depicts your feelings
  3. and then pick one or more cards that best represent the solution for how you are going to deal with this.”

Told you — one heck of a testimonial!

Thank you Dr Murray.

Craig Browne

Craig is co-founder of CCS Corporation, co-developer of the CCS, a designer, educator, product developer and award-winning game maker.


  1. Craig Browne on 13 June 2023 at 1:50 pm

    Update: Dr Murray said “Great article. Hope this helps as much as the cards have helped me!”

  2. Karelynne Randall on 13 June 2023 at 7:17 pm

    An absolutely brilliant statement that highlights the efficacy of the CCS system, especially in expression of what can be suppressed emotion.
    A brilliant system that facilitates personal and professional expression, away from limitation, towards possibility!