Tarot

It’s in the cards.

Tarot and sharing bad news

By Psyche | May 1, 2013 | 1 comment

Tarot, photo by Chris GladisEarlier we looked at the role of “accuracy” in tarot, particularly in comparison to fortune-telling. A key point to take away from this is that, in tarot reading for a client or even for oneself, the main goal of any divinatory reading is to provide information that is useful to the querent.

Whether or not the future is set can become irrelevant when the cards clearly foretell disaster for the querent. When the cards spell doom, deciding how to relate that to the client can be tricky. Changeable or not, it’s rarely something a querent wants to hear, and depending on who the querent is it can be more detrimental to share this information than not. Continue reading


Top 5 Foundational Books on Tarot

By Psyche | March 4, 2013 | 2 comments

There are some books that are required reading for the serious tarot enthusiast, and this list represents my top five foundational books on tarot – books that will provide a solid historical, symbolic and esoteric foundation for any student.

Transcendental Magic, by Eliphas Levi1. Dogme et rituel de la haute magie (available in English as Transcendental Magic), by Éliphas Lévi (Alphonse-Louis Constant)

First published in 1855 as Dogme et rituel de la haute magie, it became a foundational text for the French occult revival. It was translated into English by Arthur Edward Waite in 1896 as Transcendental Magic, its Doctrine and Ritual and gained wider recognition among English-speaking occultists on both sides of the Atlantic.

Dogma et rituel became the first occult text to weave elemental, alchemical, astrological and planetary theory with kabbalah, the tarot and ceremonial magick, synthesizing the first wholly integrated system of magick. It served and continues to serve as the basis for much symbolism found in the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, the Ordo Templi Orientis, and various contemporary mystery schools. While lacking in historical accuracy, and allowing for many liberties taken with its symbolic integrity, Dogma et rituel remains an important historical work for this reason. Continue reading


Tarot and accuracy

By Psyche | December 8, 2008 | Leave a comment

Tarot journal, photo by LimerykA woman who reads playing cards recently acquired her first tarot deck, and made inquiries on a forum I participate in as to the difference in accuracy between the two, and the “difficulty”.

Frankly, such questions are frustrating as they are not terribly meaningful in and of themselves, but as someone who reads cards professionally myself (I’ve read tarot cards for more than ten years, and I read for various clients, at corporate events, private parties and fundraisers, as well as lecture on the subject), I can attest that they are common. It might help if we first separate fortune-telling from divination. Continue reading


Card Study

By Geno | February 20, 2002 | Leave a comment

From: geno@adonai.EBay.Sun.COM (Geno )
Subject: Re: Tarot card study
Date: 23 Sep 1993 04:19:47 GMT

<< 2) Study yr deck till you can picture precisely each card >>

[stuff]
<< Each to their own of course, but my feeling is that by studying the cards in advance you rob them of their “free will” by meeting them before the proper time. It also strikes me as a highly analytical approach for a non-analytical pursuit… >>

The cards do not have a will of their own. They’re a tool and nothing more. As with just about everything else, there is no “right” way that works best for everybody. Studying the deck isn’t really an analytical thing, it’s just a way of becoming completely familiar with it. You can give a good reading when you’re unfamiliar with a deck, but the drawback is that it will take you much longer to give the reading. Also, if you’re going to charge for your readings, it doesn’t make you look very competent if you’re constantly having to refer to your book to look up the cards.

When I first started, a reading would average 1 1/2 to 2 hours. That’s way too long. Of course, I started out just practicing on my friends, so they were patient with me. I also never asked for any money to do readings. Even after I became very proficient at it.

When it comes to knowing the deck, you’re really better off if you know the deck very well or don’t know it at all. If you become familiar with just part of the deck, or with just certain cards, you can change the reading from what it should be by subconsciously pulling those cards into it that you’re most familiar with. Then the person doesn’t get an accurate reading.

The 2nd problem is giving readings to people you know fairly well. What happens alot is that the cards may say something about that person which involves some drastic change in their life but you’ll look for some other interpretation because you know them and you tell yourself, “there’s no way this person’s going to quit their job or do this or that”. It’s very difficult to keep your personal knowledge about someone from having any influence in the way you interpret the cards.

My recommendation would be to become as familiar with the cards as you can. Also, spend a lot of time handling them. Keep them wrapped in silk and don’t let other people handle them unless you’re giving them a reading. Find the type of deck that you feel most comfortable with and use only that deck. When you’ve become very adept, then you can experiment with other types of decks.

<< Interesting. I know a lot of Tarot-philes who would agree with you that it is a ‘non-analytical’ pursuit. But historically, that’s not true at all. A lot, possibly most, of the symbolism built into, say, the Rider-Waite deck is based on Waite’s conception of the kabalah and how it relates to the Tarot. Since most of the decks now on the market are based on the Rider-Waite, to an extent they all incorporate this influence. The same could be said of the Crowley deck and its decendants, and between the two of them they probably account for 80% or so of the decks you could find. So all these decks are based very much on an ‘analytic’ approach to the Tarot. >>


Card Meditation for Major Arcana

By C D Burdorf | February 20, 2002 | Leave a comment

From: mascdb[at]gdr[dot]bath[dot]ac[dot].uk (C D Burdorf)
Subject: meditation techniques for Merlin Tarot
Date: 7 Oct 92 10:53:20 GMT

Ok, due to popular demand here it is.

This is the stuff from RJ Stewart’s workshop I attended two weeks ago on Merlin Tarot and Meditation. This is for meditating on the trumps only.

When meditating,

  1. Don’t use intense concentration
  2. Let your mind wander up and down and through the card
  3. First have your eyes open, then have your eyes closed.
  4. Build the image of the card in your mind without stepping into it.
  5. Then step into the card, feel the ground, temperature, smell the smells
  6. Set the card up about 10 feet away from you, take three steps towards it, imagine yourself walking into the card, sit behind it and meditate on being inside it, then walk out of the card.

Other techniques:

If there is a path on the card, walk your way up it. Work your way through the card

Dissolve the physical forms and concentrate on the powers and energies of the card.

Once inside the card turn around and look back out, it will give you a different perspective. Write your experiences down and meditate on them.

General pattern

IN->Forms->energies->out

It doesn’t have to be for a long time.

Meditate on the card before you go to sleep. It can make you dream about the card. Look at it again as soon as you wake up. Write down your dream and meditate on it.

When inside the card ask the people for advice if you wish. Pick a card that feels relevant to your problem.

Have fun,

Chris


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