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Citrin's Avatar
Join Date: 27 Mar 2005
Location: Sweden
Posts: 1,173
Unhappy Pip cards / Tarocco delle Vetrate

So here's my little story...

After drooling over this ( ) amazing deck for months I finally managed to get a hold of it in a trade (thanks tabbycat!) here. It was even more beautiful in reality, so a very happy trade indeed.

I've used it a couple of times, and I feel a little disappointed with myself... I've always had trouble with pip cards, I'm an RWS-lover, so I guess that is what is bothering me. I just cannot understand them very well! I guess it makes me hesitate and not want to work with my new fabulous deck, but since I opened it, it has felt so special to me, I haven't felt at all like looking at my other 10 or so decks.

Therefore, I will challenge myself and really try to get to know this deck better, and I want to be able to work with it.

So I want two things...
First, anyone here working with this deck? Do you have tips?

Second, I know many people here read with Marseille decks, and I would loooove some small advice from you, how to understand the minors!

I'd appreciate any comments...

Best wishes,

TheTarotGirl on Instagram.
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Old 28-01-2006 Need help fast? Chat with a live Tarot reader now!     Top   #1
Sophie's Avatar
Join Date: 10 Oct 2004
Location: moving again
Posts: 20,309

Hi Citrin!

Not so long ago (Nov 04), I was in exactly the same position as you - coming from an RWS background and looking at a deck without scenes on the minors for the first time...It was daunting!

There are lots of threads in the Marseille section on reading the minors. Some are Marseille-specific, and some are more generally adaptable to all cards with non-scenic Minor Arcana.

A few pointers:

- first of all, go with the feel, the look of the card itself, its abstract design. It's like any abstract art, you can interpret its flowing lines, broken lines, shapes, etc.

- you can use a number of other methods on top of that, for more structure. A popular one is the number-suit method. Pick a system that suits you (classic numerology, 10 Sephirot, analogy with the Majors, etc.) for the numbers, then interpret that with the suit meaning (swords = mind, etc.) So for example, in classic numerology, 4 is stability, structure, and swords is mind: the card then can mean giving structure to your thoughts, needing to organise them (or it can mean - being too square in your thinking - just like RWS, there are different meanings).

- use the colour symbolism - again, I encourage you to experiment and research a system that suits you (or go with your gut as to what "red" means in such and such a place). A red sword is not the same as a blue sword. Emotionally, we respond to colours, and Vetrate is very colourful.

- shape symbolism is another useful method - I use it with the Tarocchi di Vetro, which uses geometric shapes consciously in its Minor Arcana. Again, there is much to be discovered on the meaning of shapes.

- Since you are dealing with stained glass windows, there have been much studies done about the symbolism of those. A rose is never just a rose in traditional stained glass art. Have a browse around.

- above all else I encourage you to develop your intuition. Because you are not limited by a scene, once you get used to working with non-scenic Minor Arcana you will find your imagination and intuition really take off in all sorts of directions.

Here is a very useful site to start with your symbolism of numbers and shapes. Happy discovery!

All generalizations are false, including this one.
Mark Twain
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Old 28-01-2006 Need help fast? Chat with a live Tarot reader now!     Top   #2
Citrin's Avatar
Join Date: 27 Mar 2005
Location: Sweden
Posts: 1,173
Thumbs up

Thank you, Helvetica!

I have this little system of connecting each minor with a major (for example, the twos go back to the High Priestess), but I feel that sometimes it's not enough. I can't believe I haven't thought about colours! You're right, it is a very colourful deck, I will definitely start thinking about them.

I am actually hoping that my intuition will adjust a little to more abstract images, not just scenes, so I'll be practicing.

Hmm. Yes, you've given me a lot to think about and explore, thanks. I'm going to check out that site too.

TheTarotGirl on Instagram.
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Old 28-01-2006 Need help fast? Chat with a live Tarot reader now!     Top   #3
Jougen no tsuki
Moonbow's Avatar
Join Date: 08 Nov 2003
Location: Southern England
Posts: 9,047

Hi Citrin

You've already had good advice from Helvetica so I just want to encourage you to work with cards. At first its tempting to relate RWS meanings to them... you may find this works for you, it didn't for me as I found it confused me even more. It was quite difficult to think of the RWS picture while trying to be intuitive with Marseilles cards. I use number/suit and relate to the Major and use whatever comes to mind within the card at that time.

The best advice I can give is not to give up.
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Old 29-01-2006 Need help fast? Chat with a live Tarot reader now!     Top   #4
Repose in a Eve of Gold...
Cerulean's Avatar
Join Date: 26 Apr 2002
Location: Calif., USA
Posts: 9,341
Do you enjoy the book that goes with this?

His words are very charming!

I like his explanations and like to relax with this deck.

It takes me a little time to get in 'his head' when I read the text. Your discussion of looking at the majors and numbers with relations to the pips reminds me of the following:

Put all the ones, twos, threes, fours together on up through ten....look at all the designs of I and the Aces, twos, can do the same for the courts, so all the pages/queens/kings/knights are together.

The differences in the designs or similiarites in the patterns...noting these things are fun in this deck. Does the small illustrations...say the pattern of the wands--do they look orderly? Are they scattered? Are they an even or odd number and does Scapini's text perhaps suggest something about harmony, order, mood of either the element or pattern or number of those cards that might be interesting to you?

He's got charming references, so I do like this deck!


Still, cerulean surges...
where, as sunset lingers
Eve with golden fingers...

Hector A. Stuart
South Sea Dreamer, 1886
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Old 29-01-2006 Need help fast? Chat with a live Tarot reader now!     Top   #5
Citrin's Avatar
Join Date: 27 Mar 2005
Location: Sweden
Posts: 1,173

I've tried that before with decks and found it just doesn't work. My RWS meanings are just that, meanings to that specific deck (and the fabulous clones of course), so I really want to get to know this deck as something unique.

do you mean the booklet that comes with it? Because I found that one impossible to understand and relate to! His system is just way too weird to me. And I often go by intuition when reading cards... But yes, I found his descriptions so odd. I really want to understand, but I just don't lol. After reading it I was actually thinking of posting something here, asking if anyone else had found it usable.

But that is a good idea! I'm going to do that tonight or tomorrow. Always good to see the patterns!

Thanks for the advice.

TheTarotGirl on Instagram.
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Old 29-01-2006 Need help fast? Chat with a live Tarot reader now!     Top   #6

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