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Looking for a book on tarot and psychoanalysis

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Post Looking for a book on tarot and psychoanalysis


I'd like some advice on books. I'm very interested in psychoanalysis and the existential side of philosophy. So I'm looking for a book in that style, probably Jungian is the most obvious approach. It would have to be an in-depth book, preferably firmly based on psychoanalytical insights. So not just a Jungian overview of the tarot archetypes, because I already have a background in tarot and psychoanalysis, and not just a tarot workbook that combines archetypal exercises with other approaches. It would have to be oriented towards individuation, self-analysis, shadow work, that kind of thing - personal work for me, not for clients. Probably more like a workbook with thorough and challenging exercises and meditation than a theoretical introduction. But not divination and reading oriented.

Phew, that's a whole list of criteria. It's just that I can't afford lots of books, so I'm trying to find the best book to buy, the one that comes closest to what I've just described...

So far I've tracked down two books that sound interesting:
Discovering Your Self through the Tarot (Gwain)
Tarot Celebrations (Amaral)

Is anyone familiar with these books? Are they good?
Are there any other books you think I should consider?

I've looked at the list of reviews here on AT, there are lots of books about tarot and psychology, but my impression is that most of them follow a different approach than I'm looking for. That's why I would like to hear from other people who have read these book as well, to get a good idea of what the individual books are really like.

Thanks a lot!
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Mariana,

Try: “Jung and Tarot: An Archetypal Journey”, by Sallie Nichols

She even proposes a style of readings that I have found useful.

Best,

EE
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I've seen it listed, but the reviews on Amazon are quite negative about it. Would you recommend it?

Anyway, that's why I'd like to hear people's opinions, to compare and to get a good view of what a book really focuses on an how in-depth it is - it's hard to tell from the online marketing information.
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Have you looked at Arthur Rosengarten's "Tarot and Psychology"? I'm not entirely certain it's what you're looking for, but it might be close. It's oriented toward the psychology clinician and describes possible uses of Tarot with clients from that perspective.
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Yes, I've seen that one, but my impression was that it's aimed at working with clients in a therapeutic psychological way... But maybe I'm wrong?

I've looked at the list of psychological books here on AT (Heart of Tarot, Messages from the Archetypes, Tarot and Dream Work, Tarot for the Healing Heart, Tarot Shadow Work, ...) but I was hoping to find people who have read one of these books and who can help me to pick the one (or few) that would be right for me...
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Cool


Heart Of Tarot: An Intuitive Approach

It's a 'maybe' suggestion. I've not had a chance to read it yet, but I've wanted to. It uses a gestalt approach.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mariana
I've seen it listed, but the review here on AT is quite negative about it. Would you recommend it?

Anyway, that's why I'd like to hear people's opinions, to compare and to get a good view of what a book really focuses on an how in-depth it is - it's hard to tell from the online marketing information.
It is basic.

The first time I read the book I found it useful. After a few years, it didn’t feel that interesting. But that is the way some things are.

I feel YOU may get something from it. :-)

Best,

EE
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Accompanying the "Jungian Tarot" is The Jungian Tarot and Its Archetypal Imagery,Volume II, by Robert Wang. ISBN 0-9715591-1-2 (2001)
This is the only volume I have, and it's a treatise on the Major Arcana - 279 pages.
It's a scholarly work, technical in places but very useful, full of historical information and useful background, pertinent to Tarot studies and actually a good read. The big difference here is the author is a Jungian expert as well as a devotee. Highly recommended.

~B~
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There is another thread that may be of interest: Tarot and Psychology.

In that general area, I still tend to prefer Irene Gad's Tarot and Individuation over the others I have perused or read. In addition to the reviews on Aeclectic, it would be nice to have a little more on the Tarotpedia page on the same book.
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I've been studying Jung and the Jungians for over forty years and for over ten years have been part of a group that meets several times a month to work with Jungian ideas, myth and symbols.

For a Jungian approach to symbology in the cards I'd suggest Sallie Nichols, _Jung and the Tarot_. This is the kind of book that Jung or Marie Louise von Franz might have written on the Major Arcana. I don't care for Irene Gad's book in that I find it a rather superficial and a not always accurate summary of Jungian principles with a lot of unacknowledged tarot material from other people. There's also _Tarot As a Way of Life: A Jungian Approach to the Tarot_ by Karen Hamaker-Zondag, although her text is not as Jungian as the title implies. I had trouble with Wang's approach, although he's certainly knowledgeable. If a Campbellian-slant is okay then there is _Tarot and the Journey of the Hero_ by Hajo Banzhaf. But these are all primarily theoretical.

As far as psychoanalytic techniques go, _Tarot Shadow Work_ by Christine Jette is probably your best bet. I'd also recommend my book _21 Ways to Read a Tarot Card_ (the Jungian influence is subtle but there)—it focuses on personal experiences with the cards. The books by Sandra Thompson (et al) have a distinctly Jungian bent, as does Geraldine Amaral's _Tarot Celebrations_ (combined with a lot of New Age-style, positive-living rituals), but they probably don't have the rigor you want.

It sounds to me like you are looking for a book that would take you on a kind of deep inner journey into the Self. The best way to accomplish this is to write the book that you are looking for - making sure that you do and write up as examples all the processes yourself (whether you use them in the final book or not).

Mary
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