Since I've been working with the Tarot de Marseille lately, I thought I would revisit the concept of facing, which in older terminology defines the "gaze" or "regard" of the central figure on each of the trump and court cards. (Is it looking, gesturing or posing toward the left, the right or straight out at the … Continue reading Gaze: Cooperation, Confrontation or Indifference?
In 1966, the English rock band The Yardbirds released the song that was the inspiration for the title of this post. The image it conveys reminds me strongly of something I picked up from the Enrique Enriquez documentary, "Tarology," regarding the structural patterns that are evident in the "pip" cards of the Tarot de Marseille. … Continue reading Over Under Sideways Down
I do some of my best work over a morning cup of strong black French Roast coffee. Today I took the opportunity to finish reading the last few pages of Caitlin Matthews' book, Untold Tarot, in preparation for writing this review. The book is beautifully produced, with an intelligent structure and numerous full-color illustrations, and it is … Continue reading Morning Coffee and Caitlin
After watching the documentary Tarology, I've decided that - although I'm probably a quarter-century older than he is - I want to be Enrique Enriquez when I grow up. He finally gave me a sound rationale for why I've staunchly resisted applying esoteric symbols from Qabala and astrology to my study and practice of the Tarot … Continue reading Tarology: Enrique Enriquez and the Tarot de Marseille
During my intermittent involvement with the Tarot de Marseille (I'm still waiting for that "one book to rule them all"), I've come across the opinion that Batons and Swords are the "hard" suits, while Cups and Coins are "soft." There is some logic to this: both wooden batons (also called staves) and edged metal blades … Continue reading Hard and Soft, Red and Black
Unfortunately, I missed my chance to pick up the self-published edition of Yoav Ben-Dov's brilliant Conver-based Tarot de Marseille while he was still alive. Fortunately, US Games has apparently acquired the license and has just released an admirable version of the CBD tarot at a reasonable price. I performed my "Personality Profile" deck interview spread … Continue reading The CBD Tarot de Marseille Deck Interview
I've been working with the numerological ideas of Joseph Maxwell and the geometric graphics of J.E. Cirlot to come up with a new model for interpreting the Tarot de Marseille pip cards. This involves Maxwell's isomorphs of the first four numbers, and Cirlot's metaphysical interpretations of the point, line, cross, triangle, square and circle. I've … Continue reading Maxwell and Cirlot: Numbers Don’t Lie
That's more than an amusing rhetorical question. One of the most daunting challenges facing those who would divine with historical decks like the Tarot de Mareille (TdM) is how to coax useful meaning from their sparely illustrated, non-scenic minor - or "pip" - cards. There is no body of traditional literature explaining how the stereotypical … Continue reading Do the Pips Roar or Squeak?
Before anyone flees for the exit, this 78-card extravaganza is NOT a spread for divination, it's a systematic way to assign interpretive meaning to the suit cards of the Tarot de Marseille (TdM) by “borrowing” it from the “trump” cards of the same number (up to a point). Finding meaning in the numbered small (or … Continue reading Fortitude and the TdM Master Layout