Esoteric Mystery

A History of the Occult Tarot by Ronald Decker

By Ronald Decker

First released in 2002, hugely wanted, and at last to be had back, A History of the Occult Tarot is the vintage paintings at the historical past of the Tarot deck and its makes use of in occult circles. beginning with the overdue nineteenth century, the authors—art historian and vintage card curator Ronald Decker and previous Oxford common sense professor Michael Dummett—examine how the Tarot went from a deck used easily for card video games to being the popular divination instrument of occultists, a bridge to the spirit international, or even a map of the subconscious brain.                  

Looking on the humans and organisations who followed the Tarot, starting from the Theosophical Society and Aleister Crowley to the Order of the Golden sunrise and P.D. Ouspensky, this compelling scholarly examine Tarot’s occult historical past describes the various attention-grabbing decks utilized by occultists in addition to the key histories of magical and occult teams of the past due nineteenth century via modern instances. it really is one of many crucial histories of the topic and a key quantity for the libraries of all critical scholars of Tarot.

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He attained wisdom so great that he became a god in legend or in fact: he was called Hermes Trismegistus, meaning ‘Hermes the Thrice Greatest’, a title adapted from the Egyptians’ practice of addressing gods as ‘great, great, great’. He purportedly wrote many dialogues and discourses, collectively known as the Books of Hermes. They were thought to have been written in Egyptian hieroglyphics, only later converted to Greek. The surviving examples are a blend of Hellenistic philosophy and Egyptian religion.

The arrangement of the pathways in Kircher's diagram became predominant among non-Jewish students of the Cabala: they seem unaware that Jewish Cabalists contemplated alternative diagrams and favoured quite different principles for associating the pathways with letters of the Hebrew alphabet. The variations produce a quandary for the practical Cabalist seeking to traverse the sephiroth in mystical visions or wishing to evoke angels from specific spheres. Even when the Tree conforms to the Geronese order of sephiroth, the pathways can vary in their disposition and in their coordination with Hebrew letters.

A complete survey has entailed an understanding of occult philosophy among the ancients (see our Introduction) and of the occultist movement, especially in the XIX century (see Part I). We have carefully investigated the activities of the outstanding fraternities and the lives of certain members. Some of the esoteric societies in our survey still exist and still use the Tarot – the story continues. But the phase involving secret teachings has surely run its course. Occultists themselves have become more open and less worried about the popularisation of their ideas.

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