Half-Measures

Here's another tidbit from Paul Marteau's Tarot de Marseille book. In describing the "inverted" or reversed image of the Knight of Cups, he says "The power of the card is only reduced in half, being too active for the effects to be extinguished; there are delays or impediments." One popular assumption about reversed cards in … Continue reading Half-Measures

Head to the Sky

I've resumed reading Paul Marteau's Tarot de Marseille book after a month's hiatus and immediately encountered another interesting idea. He mentions that the Knight of Cups is bare-headed and therefore "he is directly receiving inspiration and support from Above." In contrast, although Marteau doesn't elaborate further, it struck me that those members of the tarot … Continue reading Head to the Sky

Even and Odd Pips: Closed and Open Circuits

More useful insights from Paul Marteau's Tarot de Marseille book. I'm over half-way through it now and I'm not entirely sure I like his writing style; while his observations are generally coherent if a bit clinical, they tend to wander all over the spiritual, mental/emotional and material landscape without much disciplined organizational rigor other than … Continue reading Even and Odd Pips: Closed and Open Circuits

Suit Dynamics: Rising and Falling Energies

Apart from the symbolic orientation typically used in tarot reading (left refers to "the past," right shows "the future," up reveals matters and down conceals them), there are directional suit dynamics to consider. When you think of it in those terms, the assignment of the function of Spirit alternately to the tarot suits of Fire … Continue reading Suit Dynamics: Rising and Falling Energies

The Fives and Sevens: Transition and Improvement

In modern tarot practice, the Fives and Sevens are generally interpreted as difficult cards. But Paul Marteau, writing about the Tarot de Marseille in 1949, gave me a different perspective. It became apparent as I read his book that Marteau was heavily influenced by the numerological thinking of fellow Frenchman Joseph Maxwell in the latter's … Continue reading The Fives and Sevens: Transition and Improvement

A Tarot de Marseille “Energy Translation” Tableau

Here I align the seminal "root power" of the Ace and the linear binary projection of the Two with the "agency" of the court cards and the situational "ways and means" symbolized by the remaining pips to produce a developmental tableau that enlivens Tarot de Marseille delineation. Rather than following the esoteric assumption that only … Continue reading A Tarot de Marseille “Energy Translation” Tableau