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(Other) Divination techniques
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Do you practice any other divination technique besides Astrology?
yes
52%
 52% 
no
30%
 30% 
no, but I used to
8%
 8% 
not currently but I do intend to learn another virtue
8%
 8% 

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Lunlumo



Joined: 04 Sep 2007
Posts: 251
Location: Münster, Germany

Posted: Fri Jan 08, 2010 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks. I didn't know about the Rosicrucian background of that deck. But I immediately felt that there are definite parallels.
Apart from that there exists a Golden Dawn Tarot deck which bears hardly any resemblance to the Waite/Smith-deck. Quite different - with no illustration of the minor arcana. As far as I can see (or feel) the W/S deck is much closer to the Rosicrucian tradition than the one of the Golden Dawn. nevertehless the G.D.deck is most remarkable:

http://www.aeclectic.net/tarot/cards/golden-dawn/index.shtml

Strange fact that the greater part of astrologers use additional divination techniques. Might be interesting to know why. Insufficiency of astrological evidence ?
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dr. farr



Joined: 26 Sep 2009
Posts: 276
Location: los angeles, california usa

Posted: Sat Jan 09, 2010 3:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Golden Dawn Tarot deck originated in the 1980's, symbolisms used were taken from Golden Dawn teachings as understood by the deck's designer (Robert Wang, assisted by the late Israel Regaride). However, in stating this I am not implying inferiority of this modern deck in any sense.

Last edited by dr. farr on Sat Jan 09, 2010 4:19 am; edited 1 time in total
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Olivia



Joined: 15 Oct 2008
Posts: 866

Posted: Sat Jan 09, 2010 4:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the Whare-Ra is the oldest Golden Dawn deck - done in New Zealand in the 1920s if memory serves - a google should bring it up, along with pictures.
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dr. farr



Joined: 26 Sep 2009
Posts: 276
Location: los angeles, california usa

Posted: Sat Jan 09, 2010 4:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Olivia is correct about the first Golden Dawn temple deck: however, this deck never moved outside temple doors, and was not published for general distribution. It's Major Arcana outlines are very similar to those of the Marseilles Tarot.
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Lunlumo



Joined: 04 Sep 2007
Posts: 251
Location: Münster, Germany

Posted: Sun Jan 10, 2010 7:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's useful or even necessary to know what the tradition of one's deck is connected with. I think a aconnection with the Marseilles Tarot can never go wrong. A lot of strange stuff available (and in use ?), e.g.:
http://www.aeclectic.net/tarot/cards/alcohol/

Thanks.
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Mark
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Joined: 30 Sep 2005
Posts: 4176
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

Posted: Sun Jan 10, 2010 9:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting question and answers too. I hadn't appreciated there were so many astrologers using Tarot here.

My longest association is with the I Ching which I have used for approaching 25 years ( I started very young!). I have also worked with Tarot and Runes. Yet to try out Geomancy but the recommendations here seem worth following up. Personally, I think working with different systems can lead to interesting cross fertilisation of ideas.

Lately my interest in Tarot has blossomed ( its tends to wax and wane a bit) and I have been very interested in studying the astrological links to the Major and Minor Arcana.

In the English speaking world many Tarotists adopt the Golden Dawn or Aleister Crowley approach to the astrological associations of the Major and Minor Arcana. Personally though I have many personal problems with that approach. Regarding the Major Arcana its interesting that Anthony Louis cites a competing Latin American system of astrological associations in his book Tarot: Plain and Simple. I guess that might be coming from sources like Eliphas Levi and Papus. However, the approach I find closest to my own thinking is that of Joanna Watters in her book on Tarot.

Actually there are a number of controversial but thought provoking discussions on the astrological associations of the Major and Minor Arcana.
In particular:

1 The Astrological associations of the Major Arcana by Planet, sign or element

2 The elemental association of the suits. The GD assigned Swords to Air and Wands to Fire but many Tarot packs reverse these associations. A beautiful example of this latter approach is Nigel Jackson's 'Medieval Enchantment' deck.
http://www.aeclectic.net/tarot/cards/nigel-jackson/index.shtml

Any views from members here?

3 The Modality of the Court Cards. In particular Knight/Queen/King. A common approach is Knight=mutable/Queen=fixed/King=Cardinal. However one often sees this approach reversed with the Knights cardinal and the Kings mutable.

Another topic that I am planning to research more is the pre- GD meanings for the Minor Arcana 'pip' cards. Pamela Coleman Smith's artwork ( or its inumerable later variants) is ingrained in many Tarotists minds. I would appreciate any thoughts or leads from other members who have already explored this issue.

I suspect the answers lie outside the English speaking tradition as the GD/Waite-Smith deck approach of figured pip cards has been such a resounding success it has largely swept prior tradtition before it.
I am therefore interested in continental Tarot card divinatory associations based on older decks such as the Tarot of Marseilles or IJJ Swiss.

A good start I think is reading older non-English sources such as Levi, Papus and Wirth. However, sometimes the astrological links seem quite strange. For example Levi's system assigned astrological associations to the Major Arcana only after first linking cards through the Qaballah and Tree of Life symbolism. This leads to some quite bizarre linkages from an astrological perspective.

Mark
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''Man is troubled not by events, but by the meaning he gives them"

Epictetus


Last edited by Mark on Sun Jan 10, 2010 11:03 pm; edited 2 times in total
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GR



Joined: 14 May 2005
Posts: 443
Location: USA

Posted: Sun Jan 10, 2010 10:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mark,

I'd recommend Mystical Origins of the Tarot: From Ancient Roots to Modern Usage by Paul Huson, for some pre-GD tarot associations. Pretty interesting book.
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Mark
Moderator


Joined: 30 Sep 2005
Posts: 4176
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

Posted: Sun Jan 10, 2010 10:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi GR,

Thanks for the suggestion.

Yes I was checking out that book on Amazon just last night! It does look invaluable for people like myself that want to gain a clearer understanding of Tarot history. Its definitely on my click list.

Mark
_________________
''Man is troubled not by events, but by the meaning he gives them"

Epictetus
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Olivia



Joined: 15 Oct 2008
Posts: 866

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 12:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ron Decker's History of the Occult Tarot is another good one, and Robert Place has a book out on Tarot, mostly concentrating on the RWS and making a strong argument for neo-Platonism.

Jean-Michel David occasionally does a correspondence class on the Marseille deck - he's in Australia. Fascinating stuff, like was the Empress originally a portrait of Isabella? That kind of thing. As well as a lot of neat historical facts surrounding the creation of the Marseille.

I don't believe there was any original astrological assignment to tarot - it was a Christian card game, also used to create poetry (there may be a Petrarch link in there). I used to have a repro of the Visconti, which I adored, but that got lost. It's still available and worth your while if you're into historical tarot.

I'm pretty sure that Eteilla was the first to come up with astrological assignments for tarot cards. There are some pretty good articles at Villa Revak on that, and how much the GD followed him, even though Waite claimed not to. http://villarevak.org/astro/main.html
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Mark
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Joined: 30 Sep 2005
Posts: 4176
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 3:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Ron Decker's History of the Occult Tarot is another good one, and Robert Place has a book out on Tarot, mostly concentrating on the RWS and making a strong argument for neo-Platonism.


Thanks Olivia,

I also fancy getting Nigel Jackson's deck referred to above along with his accompanying book which is almost 150 pages long. I am sure Nigel's views are worth reading. Unfortunately, the deck/book are already out of print and quite expensive in the second hand market. I certainly plan to get some tradtitional pre-GD decks.

Quote:
I used to have a repro of the Visconti, which I adored, but that got lost. It's still available and worth your while if you're into historical tarot.


Yes the Restored Visconti-Sforza deck which is now available is definitely on my list.

Quote:
I don't believe there was any original astrological assignment to tarot - it was a Christian card game, also used to create poetry.


That sounds plausible although I think the Tarot has had multiple uses for a long time. I suppose we can all see it through our own chosen philosphical prism whether its astrology, numerology, or Qaballah. The Tarot seems almost inexhaustable on that account.

Quote:
I'm pretty sure that Eteilla was the first to come up with astrological assignments for tarot cards


Yes it seems so.

My persoal interest is that I am trying to develop a system of astrological dignities. There is no denying that the the GD system is ingenious. However, it just feels too rigid to me and doesn't allow enough space for intuition to flow. Assigning the decans to the 'pip' card was inventive but is feels far too prescriptive and over rational to me. I am happy enough to work with the basic suits and the numerology of the pips. When it comes to the Major Arcana I find the GD associations quite forced and artificial at times. I prefer to link these cards to the 7 traditional planets.

Do you use dignities much yourself in readings?
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''Man is troubled not by events, but by the meaning he gives them"

Epictetus
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dr. farr



Joined: 26 Sep 2009
Posts: 276
Location: los angeles, california usa

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 4:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

+Possibly the first book (since Etteilla's 1785 "Maniere..") to elaborate correspondences between Tarot and astrology was A.E. Thierens "General Book of the Tarot", first published in the second decade of the 20th Century (originally in Dutch), the card-symbolism used based upon the Waite deck. This book is still available (Amazon, etc) although it is rarely mentioned (or referenced) in modern Tarot literature. (Note: Thierens also wrote a number of highly interesting-though primarily esoterically oriented-astrology books as well-some of these, in English, are still available on Amazon and AbeBooks; Thierens was the head of a Dutch astrological society for several decades prior to his death in-I believe-the 1940's)

+Etteilla was the first authority to proclaim "The Book of Thoth" as the real title of the Tarot cards (predating Crowley in this terminology by over 110 years)

+Relative to astrological connections with non-Tarot cartomancy, two of our "own" wrote books on the subject in the early 20th Century:
-E.H. (Pre-Natal Epoch) Bailey, "Astrology and the Cards"
-Sepharial (!!), "Fortune Telling by Cards"
(Both of these books are available on Amazon and AbeBooks)

Kabbalistic ("Tree of Life") correspondences of signs and planets (to "sephiroth", "paths" and "worlds") date from the "Sepher Yetzirah" (Book of Formation), circa 1st-3rd Century C.E. (the original kabbalistic works-"The Bahir" and the "Sepher Yetzirah"-flow from the same Alexandrian gnosis as {Western} alchemy and astrology) Somewhat altered astrological correspondences are to be found in a later (6th-9th Century) kabbalistic work entitled "Aesch Mezeraph" (Purifying Fire)
Eliphas Levi, the Golden Dawn, and other Hermetic Kabbalists have made certain alterations to several of the original "Sepher Yetzirah" astrological correspondences, in accordance with their own spiritual (and experiential) insights. (Note: another spelling is "Sefer Yetzirah", and an alternative translation of the title is "Book of Creation")
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margherita



Joined: 10 Mar 2008
Posts: 1305
Location: Rome, Italy

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 8:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a collection of tarot decks, but I mostly have for collection, generally I don't use for divination.

My favourite are the Renaissance Visconti-Sforza, and among the modern Aleister Crowley deck.

I like a modern version with Medieval iconography, which is called Scapini deck,

http://www.aeclectic.net/tarot/cards/medieval-scapini/

margherita
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http://heavenastrolabe.net
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dr. farr



Joined: 26 Sep 2009
Posts: 276
Location: los angeles, california usa

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 8:46 am    Post subject: Constellational Major Arcana Allocations Reply with quote

Vivian Robson, in his "Fixed Stars & Constellations in Astrology" (1923) reports Major Arcana correspondences "...according to the Kabbalists..." not to signs or planets, but rather to the starry constellations! From the card titles he gives it is clear that he was referencing the Rider-Waite Tarot (in 1923 the only generally available Tarot deck-in the English speaking world-was Rider-Waite)

Constellation/Major Arcana Affinities ..."according to the Kabbalists..."

Andromeda: The Star
Antinous: The Lovers
Aquarius (constellation): Temperance
Aquila: The Lovers
Aries (constellation): The Hierophant
Auriga: The Devil

Bootes: The Hermit

Cancer (constellation): The Moon
Canis Major: The Moon
Canis Minor: The Moon
Capricorn (constellation): The Wheel of Fortune
Cassiopeia: The High Priestess
Cepheus: The Fool
Corona Borealis: The Emperor
Cygnus: The Last Judgement

Draco: Death

Gemini (constellation): The Sun

Hercules: The Emperor

Leo (constellation): Strength
Libra (constellation): Justice
Lyra: The Emperor

Ophiulcus (Serpentarius): Lightning-struck Tower
Orion: The Magician

Perseus: The Hanged Man
Pisces (constellation): The Star

Sagittarius (constellation): The Lovers
Scorpio (constellation): Lightning-struck Tower

Taurus (constellation): The Magician

Ursa Major: The Chariot
Ursa Minor: The World

Virgo (constellation): The Empress
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Mark
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Joined: 30 Sep 2005
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Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 8:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

+
Quote:
Possibly the first book (since Etteilla's 1785 "Maniere..") to elaborate correspondences between Tarot and astrology was A.E. Thierens "General Book of the Tarot", first published in the second decade of the 20th Century (originally in Dutch), the card-symbolism used based upon the Waite deck. This book is still available (Amazon, etc) although it is rarely mentioned (or referenced) in modern Tarot literature.


Thanks Dr.farr

Thats a useful lead. However, this certainly wasn't the next book to pick up astrological associations after Eteilla's. Elivas Levi, Papus and Samuel Macgregor Mathers all wrote on the topic long before this. As I mentioned earlier Eliphas Levi (1810-75) suggested links with the Tarot much earlier than this.

Eliphas Levi (Alphonse Louis Constant) created a method of incorporating both the Qabalah and astrology into the symbolism of the Tarot Major Arcana. Levi's system was as follows:

1 The Magician: Air
2 The Priestess: Moon
3 The Empress: Mars
4 The Emperor: Sun
5 The Hierophant: Aries
6 The Lovers: Taurus
7 The Chariot: Gemini
8 Justice: Cancer
9 The Hermit: Leo
10 The Wheel of Fortune: Virgo
11 Strength: Venus
12 The Hanged Man: Libra
13 Death: Water
14 Temperance: Scorpio
15 The Devil: Sagittarius
16 The Tower: Capricorn
17 The Star: Mercury
18 The Moon: Aquarius
19 The Sun: Pisces
20 Judgement: Saturn
21 The Fool: Fire
22 The World: Jupiter

Clearly for Levi the Qabalah came first and the astrology came a very distant second ( or maybe third!)

These associations really dont work from an astrological perspective when you consider he has the gentle Empress equated to aggresive Mars, the meek Hermit with exhibitionist Leo and the intuitive Moon card equated with airy Aquarius!

Other occultists also took issue issue with the this system of astrological associations in writings as early as the late 19th century.

Most famously Samuel Liddell Macgregor Mathers (1854-1918) of the Golden Dawn. While working closely with the Qabalah he also believed the astrological associations had to be valid in their own right too.

Macgregor Mathers system for the Major Arcana was as follows:

0 The Fool: Air
1 The Magician: Mercury
2 The Priestess: The Moon
3 The Empress: Venus
4 The Emperor: Aries
5 The Hierophant: Taurus
6 The Lovers: Gemini
7 The Chariot: Cancer
8 Justice: Libra
9 The Hermit: Virgo
10 The Wheel of Fortune: Jupiter
11 Strength: Leo
12 The Hanged Man: Water
13 Death: Scorpio
14 Temperance: Sagittarius
15 The Devil: Capricorn
16 The Tower: Mars
17 The Star: Aquarius
18 The Moon: Pisces
19 The Sun: The Sun
20 Judgement: Fire
21 The World: Saturn

This was the system of astrological associations that was used by Arthur Edward Waite ( 1857-1942) and Pamela Coleman Smith (d.1951)
in their Tarot deck which was first produced in 1909. Aleister Crowley also worked with these astrological associations for the Major Arcana in his famous Thoth deck.

This is essentially the system of associations that predominates in the English speaking world today. The main exception being that in the last few decades the three outer planets has been incoporated into the GD system of astrological associations for the Major Arcana. A common sequence is The Fool (Uranus), The Hanged Man (Neptune), and Judgement (Pluto).

Probably a major reason for the continued popularity of this system is that Macgregor Mathers and Waite incorporated a system of detailed astrological associations into the Minor Arcana too. I will not get into that here as there are a lot of good of material explaining the GD system of Astrological and elemental Dignities.

http://www.aeclectic.net/tarot/books/tarot-decoded/

It seems that the 'Tarot of the Bohemians' (published in 1889) by the French Tarotist Papus (Gérard-Anaclet-Vincent Encausse) (1865-1916) was a strong influence on Mathers ,Waite and Crowley.

http://www.sacred-texts.com/tarot/tob/index.htm

Here is the system of astrological associations for the Major Arcana given by Papus:

Major Arcana Attributions
1 The Juggler -
2 The Priestess: Moon
3 The Empress: Venus
4 The Emperor: Jupiter
5 The Pope: Aries
6 The Lovers: Taurus
7 The Chariot: Gemini
8 Justice: Cancer
9 The Hermit: Leo
10 The Wheel of Fortune: Virgo
11 Strength: Mars
12 The Hanged Man: Libra
13 Death: Water
14 Temperance: Scorpio
15 The Devil: Sagittarius
16 Lightning Struck Tower: Capricorn
17 The Star: Mercury
18 The Moon: Aquarius
19 The Sun: Gemini
20 Judgment: Saturn
0 The Fool: Fire
21 Th The World: 4 elements

Clearly Papus owed a lot to both Eteilla and Levi.

Of the systems presented Macgregor Mathers does seem the most successful. Still many modern Tarotists have set out alternative associations. For example Joseph Maxwell, Brian Innes and Joanna Watters. Personally, the approach I resonate with most for the Major Arcana are associations listed by Joanna Watters in her excellent introduction to the Tarot entitled:
'Tarot For Today.
http://store.higherheart.com/product.php/742/0

Although the book is only an introduction to Tarot it is one of the clearest books I have read. I admire the way Watters goes back to basics with astrological associations for the Major Arcana that seem both more common sense and historically valid. For example she refers to the planetary association between the Hermit and Saturn and the Chariot and Mars. This seems much more compatible to the Visconti-Sforza origins of the cards than the Golden Dawn system. Watters also considers multiple associations in terms of planet and sign. A very refreshing and insightful approach IMHO.

Mark
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''Man is troubled not by events, but by the meaning he gives them"

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Mark
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Joined: 30 Sep 2005
Posts: 4176
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 10:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Vivian Robson, in his "Fixed Stars & Constellations in Astrology" (1923) reports Major Arcana correspondences "...according to the Kabbalists..." not to signs or planets, but rather to the starry constellations! From the card titles he gives it is clear that he was referencing the Rider-Waite Tarot (in 1923 the only generally available Tarot deck-in the English speaking world-was Rider-Waite)


Thanks Dr Farr,

As a student of fixed stars I am a bit embarrssed I missed this link myself. Embarassed . Thanks though. I had been thinking more of linking specific stars to cards ie The Devil=Algol, The Star=Spica , The Chariot: Antares etc. However, these associations are very interesting too. I wonder if Robson got these from members of the Golden Dawn? Sadly Robson never gives his sources. Sad

Incidentally, I seem to recall seeing a modern Tarot deck based on constellations. Can anyone recall what it is?
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''Man is troubled not by events, but by the meaning he gives them"

Epictetus
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