The Virtue of Simplicity

As time goes on I find myself drawn more and more to working with only the 56 Minor Arcana cards in divination. Granted, the 22 Major Arcana are where most of the philosophical "meat" lies in the tarot, but very few of my readings rise to that level of metaphysical complexity and intensity. Most of … Continue reading The Virtue of Simplicity

A Force Too Short (or Is It Too Long?)

Another curious phrase used by the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn describes the 8 of Swords as the "Lord of Shortened Force." To me, "shortened" implies too little of something, but in Liber T Macgregor Mathers had this to say: “Too much force applied to small things." I just can't see it in that … Continue reading A Force Too Short (or Is It Too Long?)

“Pleasure with Pain for Leaven:” Blended Satisfaction

I've often pondered what Macgregor Mathers intended by the description "blended pleasure" as a pejorative for the emotional state shown in the 4 of Cups. I had to stop and think "Blended with what, and to what end?" The purpose of blending two things is usually to improve the quality of one or both of … Continue reading “Pleasure with Pain for Leaven:” Blended Satisfaction

An All-Purpose “One-on-One” Relationship Spread

Relationship questions are the "bread-and-butter" of professional tarot reading, but most of them relate to romantic matters rather than to the more routine type of interpersonal contact. Here is a spread that examines one-on-one connections of any kind from five different perspectives: 1) the overall health of the relationship, along with its condition from 2) … Continue reading An All-Purpose “One-on-One” Relationship Spread

Meditation Patterns: Strength/Lust and the Leo Decans

Continuing my exploration of the "meditation patterns" for the Minor Arcana from Jim Eshelman's Liber Theta, here are the patterns for the Leo trump card, Strength (Lust in the Thoth Deck), and the three decans of Leo; I call this sequence "The Three Trials of Lust." The Minor Arcana for the Leo decans are 5 … Continue reading Meditation Patterns: Strength/Lust and the Leo Decans

Meditation Patterns: The Emperor and the Aries Decans

A Facebook friend of mine just reminded me that Liber Theta, the College of Thelema's Thoth-based rewrite of the Golden Dawn's Liber T, includes what author Jim Eshelman calls "meditation patterns" for each pair of Major Arcana that are considered "astrological counterparts" to the Minor Arcanum for the associated decan of the Chaldean zodiac. There … Continue reading Meditation Patterns: The Emperor and the Aries Decans

Crowley’s Emotional Roller-Coaster

The Minor Arcana of the Thoth Tarot all have "esoteric" titles that for the most part hark back to their Golden Dawn roots. While these titles have academic connections to the Order's tarot curriculum or to Crowley's Thelemic elaborations, they often invoke visceral reactions in the viewer due to their evocative imagery and compelling color … Continue reading Crowley’s Emotional Roller-Coaster