Yearly Reading for Tarotists
This is a page from an old notebook.
The reading of the New Year can be done on one’s Natal Birthday or it can be done on New Year’s day. The prep is no sexual contact for 24 hours prior; a thorough cleaning of the whole house; taking a ceremonial or herbal bath and donning all clean clothes.
Before shuffling take a moment to acknowledge and give thanks to one’s spiritual allies.
Shuffle and then lay out the center card which gives the general energetic theme for the incoming year
Starting at the first position in the diagram lay out 12 cards counter clockwise. Each card is the monthly adaptation of the theme card’s energy in the coming year. Your Theme Card is paired with the card of the month. These pairs will reveal an energetic tone.
This layout is to be done with a standard 78 card Tarot deck, in the RWS or Marseille style.
Prepping a Kipper Deck
When it is time for a new Kipper deck, which is about every year-it is my process to trim the white borders off of the deck all the way to the black line which is removed as well, then round the corners.
After the cards are trimmed a stop card dot is applied to the deck. This is from the “Bavarian style” taught by Toni Puhle. Others may mark the “Master Cards” which is a different system. The dot is a memory device only.
The Kippers work better in the full deck 9X4 layout without borders for Wii as it allows the action to flow like a story board. The white borders break the flow of the eyes when reading and place the scenes into rooms or separate areas. When dealing with the house system this is well and good but not so when one is looking for directions in the big layout or when adding additional movements in the smaller stop card reading style.
Of course, only the traditional kippers have all the directions and codes attributed to Mrs. Kipper’s system. Card lore says the original cards at some point were reversed by the printer save one, card 22 The Military Person.
This mirroring effect works with the anchor of the one faithful card No. 22 to connect the now rare antique original Kipper cards to the traditional German deck, the only Kipper deck Wii use for fortune telling. Period!
Fortune Telling Cards
After a considerable amount of handling card decks experience has shown when working with clients who want to know about what is coming down the pike, a decan style deck is the most effective tool. The term decan is from Egyptian astronomy but when used here simply refers to the number of cards in a fortune telling deck which is 36. Lenormand, Kipperkarten, Zigeuner are Wahrsagekarten or fortune telling cards. It is their purpose.
The 36 card decks seem to have an affinity with the interplay of the earth plane and the energies that affect it from the skies above the so-called “36 faces of heaven.” The number 36 is a number which relates to spirits & Daimons.* The astute reader will see the 72 spirits attributed to Solomonic Magic is simply the doubling of the number 36.
In fortune telling, two of the cards are the Querent and their significant other. Some decks show other persons or characters as well, the rest are symbols as in Lenormand, or scenarios as in the Kipperkarten and Zigeuner decks. Lenormand with its symbols does not have the same amount of predictive power because it depends upon a reader’s ability to interpret the symbols as if they were seen in a dream without real context. This of course will vary from reader to reader leaving a lot of room for “guessing”.
The Zigeuner or Gypsy deck combines symbols with scenes. It is not a deck of choice for me. It has an atmosphere or a vibration of the Old World which does not trigger any connection to the images. This is key to the use of any card deck -that there be personal affinity. However, the Kipper cards which depend on scenarios and not symbology do spark a link for me. They are in the what you see is what it is camp. The reader does not have to use mental gymnastics to tease out a meaning and they are not read by rote keywords but by placement and direction.
The German language puts many off but the scenes and the signs are in the universal language of imagery. If you want to tell what events are coming for clients, do investigate a 36 card fortune telling deck. You won’t be sorry.
*(See: Austin Coppock, 36 Faces, Three Hands Press, 2014)
The Y Crossroad
Through the Valley
The Winter of 2020 was a particularly harsh one. The use of divination by cards was not needed as the focus was more on dream symbology.
Yes, there are similar rites and similarities but the use of a deck to “see” seemed to be a bit of a chore as there was so much glorious darkness to travel in and on.
Spring is arriving slowly and with night chills in the Northeast. More light is available, longer days and oddly enough longer dreams, so into the labyrinth the Soul travels. The Bright Mirror scrys just as well as the Dark and the ways of seeing in day and night are many.
After Isolation Changes
Tarot, Oracle or Fortune Telling Deck?
In a time where one may casually hear any means of divination referred to as Tarot, which type of deck a full size 78 card true Tarot or an oracle deck of various sizes from less than 36 to more than 52 cards is the best to select for your client’s reading situation?
Having started out with a full sized Tarot deck of the Marseilles style where the minor arcana or pip cards are numbered this deck is the one which is most familiar to me.
An oracle deck for me is a deck which is visual having pictures and geometric symbols not numbered or in suits like playing cards. This style of deck works for me to trigger messages from the shared subconscious levels between myself and the client. Most oracle decks were not numbered individually and the number of cards in the deck varied. A personal favorite was the 1997 Vertical Oracle by Antero Alli using 52 images created by Sylvie Pickering.
In the last 10 years learning the European style of fortune telling decks of 36 cards was a major change and challenge. Having started with Lenormand from a French perspective study proved in was indeed a German concept. Moving into the Kipperkarten the benefits of using the 36 cards began to show themselves in ways that Tarot did not.
Tarot I have found reads the internal aspects of the person in their environment or inside to outside. Oracle decks read all the energies in an environment or situation using symbol language. Fortune telling decks of 36 cards seem to deal with the energies in the outer world and how the person is handling them or from the outer to the inner.
Clients in general want to deal with the latter how to handle the outer environment wanting to know what is coming down the pike. The 36 card decks excel at this. So it would be good when you don’t know the client at all such as an outdoor fair or doing online services.
Initiates and people working in aspects of magick or the occult want to check their energies and balance so the 78 card Tarot is able to show them an internal blueprint. The Major Arcana dealing with outer phenomena, the Minor Arcana with the 4 element balance in their own system and the Court Cards with their psychological interface. One would have to know the client’s interests to select this method.
Artists, creative people and those of a mystical mindset fare well when read with a symbol-visual dominant oracle. Again this works for people whose interests you know or repeat clients.
Just my take on the various tools. Try them out!
22, 56 & 36
The Major Arcana have been used in the Western system of Hermetics along with the Tree of Life to hold the contents and illustrate the structure of the Worlds. The roots of Tarot like the roots of all games have an enduring and far reaching quality which allows them to survive in the eye of the public and thus by availability to also be used as aids to memory.
The reading of events to come in Tarot relies heavily on the 40 Minor Arcana as the 16 Court Cards interact with them. These 56 cards relate to energies which are coalescing and forming into manifestation. The 22 cards can be seen as archetypes, causes or knots being tied and untied which impact upon coming events.
The 52 standard playing card deck is a modification of the 56 cards of Tarot’s Minor Arcana which can be used for fortune telling. The requirement to do so is a firm understanding of the 4 emblems or suits as symbols of the elements and/or the ability to read elemental pairings in a numerical field.
I see Tarot as a divination tool best suited to the Initiate in a system. A divination tool reads the Querent’s energies as the central catalyst of all phenomena in the environment. For the everyday mundane “other” and outer centered queries of love and money, the 36 card decks give a far more direct response.
The German 36 card games are great parlor oracles. They work well to answer all the questions a client may ask. Lenormand is quite popular in the US today. My preference however is the original Kipperkarten deck with its variety of layouts and sharp directness. As to the Gypsy cards I do not particularly care for the images on the cards and thus there is no sympathetic bond. A reader should definitely have an affinity for the cards they read!
It is not necessary to read a variety of decks. One may of course sample many decks over time in search of what works best but when it comes to advancing in Cartomancy one will find they have to limit their toolkit. The master deck is a single type of deck in a specific form which rises up out of the multitude of cards. As the saying goes “there can be only one” which the Reader truly knows inside and out.
The Roots of Tarot and the Great Arcanum
My readers know by now that I separate divination from fortune telling. As a divination tool the Majors speak of phenomena, the Royals of psychological concepts and the Minors of energies. The Tarot is used for divination as it contains 3 parts which are analogous to those of the Great Arcanum of the Hermetic mystery system. In fact the words TARO and ROTA form part of the formula of the Great Arcanum according to Eliphas Levi in Transcendental Magic.
Tarot in an esoteric sense functions as a language of the Great Work. Language of course is symbolic and when combined with the imagery becomes a treasure map. The words cartomancy and cartography share the root cart from Greek χάρτης chartēs, “papyrus, sheet of paper, map;” which becomes in our modern English card.
The Tarot was introduced and produced in the time of the Moors in the cities of Cordoba and Toledo during Spain’s Golden Age. Cabala with a C refers to Horsemen, Knights or Crusaders those who traveled. In those times one traveled to learn any Occult Art.
The Tarot as used by the Travelers, i.e. chivalric orders of Adepts were landmarks on the territory of both exterior and interior maps, well before the influence of philosophy and religion which colors Hebrew Kabbalah became the more dominant theme. The language of the earlier Cabala is extant in the Coats of Arms used by the Royal Families of Europe who in Tarot parlance are the Court Cards.
Hence, Spanish Cabala is functionally a geometric or graphic approach much akin to a chess game while Jewish Kabbalah is more the mathematical perspective as evidenced by its Gematria. The African influence on Tarot according to Mouni Sadhu by way of Professor G.O.B. Mebes of Russia resides in its color coding.
Hence the three parts of the Great Arcanum are present in the very construction of the Marseilles deck in the graphic scenarios of the Majors; the bright coloring of the Honors or Royal Court and the numbering of the Pips or Minor Arcana.
Occult and esoteric correspondences or links are connected to Tarot cards as mnemonic devices which allow them to pass on pieces of occult knowledge according to the school or group one is associated with from one generation to another.