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The Tarot, Divination & Spirituality

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  • Light Eye
    Dear Friends, Click the link if you don t receive the image or can t access the link in the article.
    Message 1 of 2 , Oct 3, 2005
    • 0 Attachment
      Dear Friends,

      Click the link if you don't receive the image or can't access the link in the article.

      http://www.chronogram.com/issue/2005/10/wholeliving/innervision.php

      Love and Light.

      David

      The Tarot, Divination, and Spirituality
      Seeking The Higher Self Through Ancient Symbolism
      Text And Illustration By Robert M. Place


      The Tarot is a deck of cards that can be used as a tool for developing intuition, and it is also more. The cards in a Tarot deck contain symbolic images that express a mystical philosophy, a philosophy that stems from the mentors of Western culture, Pythagoras and Plato, and that has been cherished by mystics and sages over the centuries. The philosophy is expressed not only in individual pictures but in the structure and organization of the deck. Effectively, the Tarot is a map of the spiritual universe, a mandala, divided into separate components but maintaining the pattern through the relationship of each component to another. When this philosophy and structure is understood and the cards are used as an intuitive device, a communication happens between the conscious self and a source of wisdom in the unconscious that I call the Higher Self. Used in this way, the Tarot is like a personal sage that one can converse with whenever guidance is needed. As day-to-day decisions are made
      from this place of wisdom, using the Tarot becomes a spiritual path.



      For those who are not familiar with the Tarot I will first describe the deck. The Tarot is a set of playing cards, much like a regular poker deck, but instead of having just four suits, the Tarot has a fifth suit, composed of a procession of 22 enigmatic images. The Tarot also differs in that its four minor suits feature the antique Spanish and Italian suit symbols—swords, cups, staffs, and coins—instead of spades, hearts, clubs, and diamonds, and, with the addition of the knight, it has four royal cards instead of three in each suit. However, it is essentially the addition of the fifth suit with its mysterious figures that makes a deck a Tarot and transforms it into a spiritual tool. This fifth suit is composed of the unnumbered Fool and 21 numbered trumps, some representing humans, such as the Magician and the Pope, and other allegorical or religious figures like the Wheel of Fortune and the Last Judgment. It is the trumps that have captured the modern imagination and account for
      the Tarot's popularity and it is through the trumps that the Tarot expresses a timeless mystical philosophy.



      Since the late 18th century, occultists have been drawn to the Tarot and have considered it an indispensable part of their magical equipment. To provide it with what they considered to be a suitable ancient pedigree, occultists have made up numerous spurious histories and associations for the deck. Most commonly, it was given an origin in ancient Egypt and said to be the creation of ancient Kabbalists or of Egyptian priests under the guidance of the mythical sage Hermes Trismegistus, a Hellenized version of the Egyptian god Thoth. The 22 cards in the fifth suit were said to derive from Egyptian hieroglyphs but also represent the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet as well as celestial and elemental symbols. Not all of the insights of the occultists were wrong, but these assertions are false. At their worst, the occultists' associations have become a wall of confusion that blocks many from appreciating the mystical heritage that is preserved in the deck.



      Historic evidence indicates that the Tarot began in Renaissance Italy sometime between 1410 and 1442, when a set of trumps was added to the already existing four-suit deck. The most likely place of origin is Milan or Ferrara. The trumps, or trionfi, as they were called in Italian, were added to the deck to play a trick-taking game that is the ancestor of bridge. Unlike modern bridge, played with a four-suit deck, the Tarot has a natural trump suit that outranks the other minor suits. Game playing was the Tarot's main purpose, but there is evidence that it was also used for divination. Because the Tarot was created primarily to play a game, we may think that the allegory told in its pictures is trivial and not worth all the attention that it has been given, but in the Renaissance, even a game was considered a suitable place to express a profound mystical allegory.



      Our English term "trump" is derived from the Italian trionfi, which was also the name of a type of procession or parade. This parade, called a triumph in English, originated in ancient Rome and was revived in the late Middle Ages. By the Renaissance it had taken on a mystical symbolic character and poets and visual artists commonly made use of its structure as an organizing principle. A triumph began with the character of lowest rank and each succeeding character trumped the one before, until the final trump was reached. In "I Trionfi," a poem by the famous 14th-century poet Petrarch, we find an allegorical triumph taken to the ultimate mystical conclusion. In Petrarch's poem, Lust is trumped by Virtue, who in turn falls victim to Death. Death is trumped by Fame, who also falls victim to Time. But, in the end, Time is conquered by the final mystical trump Eternity, which is the immortal realm of the soul and beyond time and death. The Tarot trumps are a related work of art based on
      the theme of the triumph. The Tarot's allegory, like Petrarch's poem, aims at the highest mystical truth. In the Tarot trumps, we find symbols of time (the Wheel of Fortune) and death (the Death card) in the center of the series. The final trump is the World, a mystical vision of the purified soul, represented by a beautiful nude in the center, surrounded by the symbols of the four evangelists—the lion, the bull, the eagle, and the man—which in Christian iconography represent the throne of God. When the soul dances on the throne of God, time and death are conquered.



      This final card, with its main character in the central position and the symbols of the four evangelists taking the four corners, captures the archetypal structure of a mandala, a map of the sacred world. In the mandala the center is the most sacred position, and the symbols in the four corners represent the fourfold mundane world, which is conquered yet enlivened by the central figure. The entire Tarot deck, with its five suits, embodies this same structure. The trumps are the mystical message of the center and the four minor suits can be associated, like the symbols of the four evangelists, with the four directions, the four seasons, the four elements, the four cardinal virtues, and other manifestations of the fourfold physical world. When this structure is appreciated, the Tarot can be used in divination to speak about every aspect of one's life.



      This brings us to the use of the Tarot. The Tarot can be used for teaching and meditation but it is most commonly used for divination. Divination, however, is often misunderstood as fortune telling or predicting the future. I do not feel that foretelling the future is the best use of the Tarot. The root of the word divination is deus, which means God in Latin. Divination more accurately means a communication with the divine or the Higher Self. Instead of predicting the future, a Tarot reading works best when it speaks of the present. It can provide the greater kinds of insight, guidance, and wisdom that come from the Higher Self. Understanding the philosophy of the cards helps the communication and, used in this way, the Tarot helps us to make not only wise decisions but more enlightened decisions. In turn, each decision leads us further on the spiritual path.



      To learn more about using Tarot as a spiritual growth tool, pick up a deck at a mystical arts store or bookstore and consult Robert Place's The Tarot: History, Symbolism, and Divination, or catch one of his lectures at Ulster Community College in November and December. For information, go to http://thealchemicalegg.com




      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Jahnets
      http://geocities.com/cartedatrionfi/Fragments/1440-1479.html#1449 You might also want to look at this site... ... From: Astrosciences@yahoogroups.com
      Message 2 of 2 , Oct 3, 2005
      • 0 Attachment
        http://geocities.com/cartedatrionfi/Fragments/1440-1479.html#1449

        You might also want to look at this site...



        -----Original Message-----
        From: Astrosciences@yahoogroups.com
        [mailto:Astrosciences@yahoogroups.com]On Behalf Of Light Eye
        Sent: Monday, October 03, 2005 5:51 AM
        To: Global_Rumblings@...; SpeakIt@...;
        ufodiscussion@yahoogroups.com; changingplanetchat@yahoogroups.com;
        astrosciences@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: [Astrosciences] The Tarot, Divination & Spirituality


        Dear Friends,

        Click the link if you don't receive the image or can't access the link in
        the article.

        http://www.chronogram.com/issue/2005/10/wholeliving/innervision.php

        Love and Light.

        David

        The Tarot, Divination, and Spirituality
        Seeking The Higher Self Through Ancient Symbolism
        Text And Illustration By Robert M. Place

        The Tarot is a deck of cards that can be used as a tool for developing
        intuition, and it is also more. The cards in a Tarot deck contain symbolic
        images that express a mystical philosophy, a philosophy that stems from the
        mentors of Western culture, Pythagoras and Plato, and that has been
        cherished by mystics and sages over the centuries. The philosophy is
        expressed not only in individual pictures but in the structure and
        organization of the deck. Effectively, the Tarot is a map of the spiritual
        universe, a mandala, divided into separate components but maintaining the
        pattern through the relationship of each component to another. When this
        philosophy and structure is understood and the cards are used as an
        intuitive device, a communication happens between the conscious self and a
        source of wisdom in the unconscious that I call the Higher Self. Used in
        this way, the Tarot is like a personal sage that one can converse with
        whenever guidance is needed. As day-to-day decisions are made from this
        place of wisdom, using the Tarot becomes a spiritual path.



        For those who are not familiar with the Tarot I will first describe the
        deck. The Tarot is a set of playing cards, much like a regular poker deck,
        but instead of having just four suits, the Tarot has a fifth suit, composed
        of a procession of 22 enigmatic images. The Tarot also differs in that its
        four minor suits feature the antique Spanish and Italian suit
        symbols—swords, cups, staffs, and coins—instead of spades, hearts, clubs,
        and diamonds, and, with the addition of the knight, it has four royal cards
        instead of three in each suit. However, it is essentially the addition of
        the fifth suit with its mysterious figures that makes a deck a Tarot and
        transforms it into a spiritual tool. This fifth suit is composed of the
        unnumbered Fool and 21 numbered trumps, some representing humans, such as
        the Magician and the Pope, and other allegorical or religious figures like
        the Wheel of Fortune and the Last Judgment. It is the trumps that have
        captured the modern imagination and account for the Tarot's popularity and
        it is through the trumps that the Tarot expresses a timeless mystical
        philosophy.



        Since the late 18th century, occultists have been drawn to the Tarot and
        have considered it an indispensable part of their magical equipment. To
        provide it with what they considered to be a suitable ancient pedigree,
        occultists have made up numerous spurious histories and associations for the
        deck. Most commonly, it was given an origin in ancient Egypt and said to be
        the creation of ancient Kabbalists or of Egyptian priests under the guidance
        of the mythical sage Hermes Trismegistus, a Hellenized version of the
        Egyptian god Thoth. The 22 cards in the fifth suit were said to derive from
        Egyptian hieroglyphs but also represent the 22 letters of the Hebrew
        alphabet as well as celestial and elemental symbols. Not all of the insights
        of the occultists were wrong, but these assertions are false. At their
        worst, the occultists' associations have become a wall of confusion that
        blocks many from appreciating the mystical heritage that is preserved in the
        deck.



        Historic evidence indicates that the Tarot began in Renaissance Italy
        sometime between 1410 and 1442, when a set of trumps was added to the
        already existing four-suit deck. The most likely place of origin is Milan or
        Ferrara. The trumps, or trionfi, as they were called in Italian, were added
        to the deck to play a trick-taking game that is the ancestor of bridge.
        Unlike modern bridge, played with a four-suit deck, the Tarot has a natural
        trump suit that outranks the other minor suits. Game playing was the Tarot's
        main purpose, but there is evidence that it was also used for divination.
        Because the Tarot was created primarily to play a game, we may think that
        the allegory told in its pictures is trivial and not worth all the attention
        that it has been given, but in the Renaissance, even a game was considered a
        suitable place to express a profound mystical allegory.



        Our English term "trump" is derived from the Italian trionfi, which was
        also the name of a type of procession or parade. This parade, called a
        triumph in English, originated in ancient Rome and was revived in the late
        Middle Ages. By the Renaissance it had taken on a mystical symbolic
        character and poets and visual artists commonly made use of its structure as
        an organizing principle. A triumph began with the character of lowest rank
        and each succeeding character trumped the one before, until the final trump
        was reached. In "I Trionfi," a poem by the famous 14th-century poet
        Petrarch, we find an allegorical triumph taken to the ultimate mystical
        conclusion. In Petrarch's poem, Lust is trumped by Virtue, who in turn falls
        victim to Death. Death is trumped by Fame, who also falls victim to Time.
        But, in the end, Time is conquered by the final mystical trump Eternity,
        which is the immortal realm of the soul and beyond time and death. The Tarot
        trumps are a related work of art based on the theme of the triumph. The
        Tarot's allegory, like Petrarch's poem, aims at the highest mystical truth.
        In the Tarot trumps, we find symbols of time (the Wheel of Fortune) and
        death (the Death card) in the center of the series. The final trump is the
        World, a mystical vision of the purified soul, represented by a beautiful
        nude in the center, surrounded by the symbols of the four evangelists—the
        lion, the bull, the eagle, and the man—which in Christian iconography
        represent the throne of God. When the soul dances on the throne of God, time
        and death are conquered.



        This final card, with its main character in the central position and the
        symbols of the four evangelists taking the four corners, captures the
        archetypal structure of a mandala, a map of the sacred world. In the mandala
        the center is the most sacred position, and the symbols in the four corners
        represent the fourfold mundane world, which is conquered yet enlivened by
        the central figure. The entire Tarot deck, with its five suits, embodies
        this same structure. The trumps are the mystical message of the center and
        the four minor suits can be associated, like the symbols of the four
        evangelists, with the four directions, the four seasons, the four elements,
        the four cardinal virtues, and other manifestations of the fourfold physical
        world. When this structure is appreciated, the Tarot can be used in
        divination to speak about every aspect of one's life.



        This brings us to the use of the Tarot. The Tarot can be used for teaching
        and meditation but it is most commonly used for divination. Divination,
        however, is often misunderstood as fortune telling or predicting the future.
        I do not feel that foretelling the future is the best use of the Tarot. The
        root of the word divination is deus, which means God in Latin. Divination
        more accurately means a communication with the divine or the Higher Self.
        Instead of predicting the future, a Tarot reading works best when it speaks
        of the present. It can provide the greater kinds of insight, guidance, and
        wisdom that come from the Higher Self. Understanding the philosophy of the
        cards helps the communication and, used in this way, the Tarot helps us to
        make not only wise decisions but more enlightened decisions. In turn, each
        decision leads us further on the spiritual path.



        To learn more about using Tarot as a spiritual growth tool, pick up a deck
        at a mystical arts store or bookstore and consult Robert Place's The Tarot:
        History, Symbolism, and Divination, or catch one of his lectures at Ulster
        Community College in November and December. For information, go to
        http://thealchemicalegg.com


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