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Rider Waite VS Thoth

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Rider Waite VS Thoth


Okay so what is the difference between the two? I know that some of the majors are numbered differently. But is that all?

Sorry to be so silly about this. But I grabbed a deck that I love, and it turns out to be a thoth deck not a RWS deck. And I am worried about not being able to read with it.

Thanks
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No, it is a HUGELY different system.

That said - try reading and if it works for you - that's great. But to understand the attributes and so on, it is very different indeed. Superimposing Waite meanings probably won't work.

You might try and change the spelling in the thread title, by the way... If it's less than half an hour old,. you can do, as I recall...
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kat Moon View Post
Okay so what is the difference between the two?
Waite was exposed to the Golden Dawn deck and system and developed his own tarot from that and other sources with his own slant on it, which seems based on a type of Christian, mystical, romantic, medieval European symbolism painted by a woman who was an illustrator and set designer.

Crowley was exposed to the Golden Dawn deck and system and developed his own tarot from that and other sources with his own slant on it, which seems based on a type of revolutionary spiritual anarchy, distinctly NOT Christian, but spiritually libertarian, depicting a wide base of eclectic symbolism and spiritual traditions, cross referenced to each other including some eastern systems and painted by a more 'progressive' artist using contemporary technique and styles .

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Originally Posted by Kat Moon View Post


I know that some of the majors are numbered differently. But is that all?
At 2nd glance you may notice some majors have variant titles; Strength - Lust, Justice - Adjustment, Temperance - Art , World - Universe, The Last Judgement - The Aeon ....

Also, each minor card has a descriptive title printed on it.

Also, on the surface, The courts Progress as King, Queen, Prince, Princess ; 2 of each sex.
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.... lost my link .....

The main difference seems to be in the underlying philosophy of the two systems - very different .
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I think if you're used to the RWS and you try to read with the Thoth you'll be scratching your head wondering what the heck you're looking at. It could probably been done but it may throw your game off for awhile til you get used to it.
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Both stem from the Golden Dawn "tradition," but in my experience they couldn't be more different in practice. The best advice I can give is to just read The Pictorial Key to the Tarot and The Book of Thoth (two demanding texts, each in its own way and for different reasons) with a critical eye toward where they align and diverge. It won't take long to get a general feel for each system's viewpoint. I see Waite as more the dignified but stuffy academic, Crowley as the visionary "loose cannon."
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Barleywine, I agree completely but for a beginner, reading not only one but two difficult texts to distill the difference - well, I wouldn't have managed it.

I would recommend to read Rachel Pollack's 78 Degrees of Wisdom for the RWS, and DuQuette's book for the Thoth. Both give good introductions to the decks without dumbing them down, and you can get a good feeling where each deck stands.

The images alone already tell you the difference: RWS is a narrative deck, and you can read it by just looking at the pictures and finding a story in the cards. The Thoth is, at least in the minors, an abstract deck. You can read it by just looking at the shapes and colours, but you immediately feel that you need some background, some knowledge. It's more challenging to find the "story". The cards help you less.

That makes many people think the Thoth is less suitable for beginners. I think that's not true. Go with the deck that calls your name. Being challenged a bit more in the beginning is not a bad thing, and for some people, the narrative scenes in the RWS may even be an obstacle because their stories may overwhelm your own.

But don't read one deck with the meanings of the other. That may be possible but you simply miss out.

Read a lot with the deck and read a book along with it, and you'll see which deck speaks to you.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregory View Post
No, it is a HUGELY different system.....
I wouldn't dignify Waite's divinatory meanings by calling it a "system", as Waite's meanings in PKT are cobbled together from a variety of sources. The only true system underlying the RWS is that of the Golden Dawn, but Waite doesn't explicitly mention that in PKT, although he seems to hint at it in the earlier sections.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nemia View Post
Barleywine, I agree completely but for a beginner, reading not only one but two difficult texts to distill the difference - well, I wouldn't have managed it.

I would recommend to read Rachel Pollack's 78 Degrees of Wisdom for the RWS, and DuQuette's book for the Thoth. Both give good introductions to the decks without dumbing them down, and you can get a good feeling where each deck stands.

The images alone already tell you the difference: RWS is a narrative deck, and you can read it by just looking at the pictures and finding a story in the cards. The Thoth is, at least in the minors, an abstract deck. You can read it by just looking at the shapes and colours, but you immediately feel that you need some background, some knowledge. It's more challenging to find the "story". The cards help you less.

That makes many people think the Thoth is less suitable for beginners. I think that's not true. Go with the deck that calls your name. Being challenged a bit more in the beginning is not a bad thing, and for some people, the narrative scenes in the RWS may even be an obstacle because their stories may overwhelm your own.

But don't read one deck with the meanings of the other. That may be possible but you simply miss out.

Read a lot with the deck and read a book along with it, and you'll see which deck speaks to you.
Yes, I somewhat agree with that. Perhaps we could also recommend, for people in this 'fix' Wang's book ? It focuses on, in part, comparisons, to those two decks and another two more 'traditional' deck . Many appreciate its layout of illustrations showing the different deck cards, side by side.

here is a free copy

http://www.ebooks-on-cd.com/PDFs/Rob...ic%20Tarot.pdf
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ravenest View Post
Yes, I somewhat agree with that. Perhaps we could also recommend, for people in this 'fix' Wang's book ? It focuses on, in part, comparisons, to those two decks and another two more 'traditional' deck . Many appreciate its layout of illustrations showing the different deck cards, side by side.

here is a free copy

http://www.ebooks-on-cd.com/PDFs/Rob...ic%20Tarot.pdf
Yes, I should have thought of that one, it makes a reasonable stab at comparison using four different decks, although I would have liked to see another deck beside Wang's artistically pedestrian Golden Dawn Tarot in the mix (even if it did have Regardie's blessing). Maybe another "left-field" historical entry like the Wirth or Etteilla, just for flavor? But I guess that might be stretching the "qabalistic" paradigm a bit too far.
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