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EPIPHANY! A New Take on the Major Arcana

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dangerdork
How many people out there are actually looking at this system and laying cards down on the table (or floor, or grass) in front of them?
dangerdork,

To be perfectly honest, I have NOT had the opportunity yet to lay out the cards and "play along." I've printed out most of what you've written up and should be able to "play along" this weekend. I'll definitely let you know how it goes.

I DO have two problems though, and they're both kinda related:

1) I gotta figure out which deck to use. Should I use my RWS (or one of its direct clones)? Should I use my Robin Wood, which is my go-to deck? Or should I use something like the Gothic Tarot (Vargo) that I'm in the process of studying?

2) Should I start simple and follow the leader or should I pull out something like the Navigators Tarot of the Mystic SEA and see how a non-standard deck fits into the system? (I love a challenge. )

Rodney
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Hey Rodney,

I've made up some nifty PDF files with the Inner and Outer Paths for each of the four suits of the Minors - I used eight different decks for examples, and I am really enjoying how each deck adds its own nuances to the "Story" of each Path. . Having a few computer problems, as soon as I get Dreamweaver up and running I'll post a link. In the mean time, I will be glad to pass along to anyone who PMs me with their email addy.

Got a lot to talk about, just need to fix my puter first.

ETA: and to answer your questions - GO FOR IT!

I'm just making this up as I go along, and any insights gained from other people make it even funnerer!
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I've made my first handouts for the Seven Stations series!

The Inner and Outer Path for each suit, illustrated with some popular and personal favorite decks, can be found at:

http://www.martinboso.com/tarot/cups_inner.pdf
http://www.martinboso.com/tarot/cups_outer.pdf
http://www.martinboso.com/tarot/wands_inner.pdf
http://www.martinboso.com/tarot/wands_outer.pdf
http://www.martinboso.com/tarot/pents_inner.pdf
http://www.martinboso.com/tarot/pents_outer.pdf
http://www.martinboso.com/tarot/swords_inner.pdf
http://www.martinboso.com/tarot/swords_outer.pdf

space has been provided for you to write in your own favorite definitions for each card.

That's one thing I haven't really focused on in my discussions of this evolving system. Individual definitions of cards are completely flexible. If you think that the Death card means you are going to eat cake, then so be it. The definitions I'm suggesting are those of progressions or milestones in a Journey. Stations. How you choose to interpret what you see along the way at each stop on your metaphysical train ride through this pasteboard landscape is entirely up to you.

Think of me as a travel agent, suggesting that if you take this route you'll see all the churches and if you take that one, all the battlefields. Or maybe I'm a tour guide, tacking up little notices in each station along the way to remind the independent travelers of of the progress we've made -- and what we recommend as the significant attractions that can be reached from this stop. If you choose to debark and talk to the natives along the way, you'll have a much better time, believe me.

I have a lot to discuss today, and I have the day off from work so I intend to post a LOT.

But in the meantime, download those travel brochures. If you're still reading this thread, I promise you'll be glad you did. I've left space for you to take notes. ALL ABOARD!
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someone told me the other day ( and i read it somewhere too) that "the old systems don't work anymore. we are at a stage in our journey where we have to create our own systems". this reminded me of part of a post by Enrique Enriquez, where he tells you how reading cards is about you and the cards, and to 'create your own meanings'..."what are you going to learn from the books? someone else's interpretations?" he said something like that. i agree. we have to learn to have a relationship with the cards that allow us to communicate in feedback mode.

blessed be
y
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dangerdork
As far as Numerology and Astrology go, I'm not particularly well-versed in either topic and don't ascribe to them as primary interpretive methods. I've read a lot on both topics over the years, but it tends to go in one ear and out the other. If people are using Arrien Soul Cards to find significators and then placing themselves on one of the paths here, then I'm curious to hear how that works out.
dangerdork,

I'm actually doing the original layout right now and condensing much of what you've written about the layout (not the spread) into a spreadsheet where I can see everything all together.

I can't speak to any astrological plusses to how the Seven Stations layout is done, but I did just notice that you've got the numerology down, unlike both Campbell and Roberts who inspired you to create/discover this layout. For example, 21 The World reduces to 3 The Empress. Both cards are on the same path. 19 The Sun reduces to 10 Wheel of Fortune which further reduces to 1 The Magician. And guess what? They're all on the same path. The same is true for all the Major Arcana in terms of numerological reduction.

I know it has something to do with the number nine. 16 => 1+6=7. Also 16-9=7. By laying the cards up in columns of 3 instead of across in 3 rows like Roberts or across in 5 rows like Campbell, you've instinctively (?) placed each card 9 positions ahead of the card(s) that it reduces to and the numerologically associated cards end up being on the same row. (You may not be well-versed in Numerology, but something you've read has stuck with you. If not, that was an incredible stroke of luck and I need you to buy some MegaMillions tickets for me for Friday! )

I also just noticed that there's a special relationship between the cards in the Origins, Turning Point and Goal columns. The cards under Turning Point reduce to Origins. And the cards under Goal also reduce to Origins. And in the special case of the Outer Path, The Goal card reduces to the Turning Point card, which then reduces to the Origin card.

If the Turning Point is considered to be a mirror (more like Alice's Looking Glass, but I think a regular mirror would work too) through which the Origin becomes the Goal, then
- the Empress when reflected through the Hanged Man becomes The World
- the High Priestess when reflected through Justice becomes Judgment
- the Magician when relfected through the Wheel of Fortune becomes The Sun.

Next on my list is to see if each card fits its path and station in my mind. Then I'll see if the flow of each card in each of the paths makes sense. Then I'll see what applying elemental dignities to the cards does to the interactions of each triad of cards in each path. (I already see a problem with Emperor | Chariot | Wheel of Fortune on the Outer path. You have a Water card in the Chariot surrounded by two Fire cards, which greatly weaken the Water card. That's a problem when the Chariot is in the Power station and it's weak. Hmmm.... Gotta think on that one.)

I know I won't get through all that before the weekend. But I'll report in as I discover more things/have more feedback.

BTW, I'm using the Robin Wood for the layout.

Rodney
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dangerdork
For those who STILL haven't laid the cards out, the three rows we have now grouped the cards into consist of:

Empress - Lovers - Hermit - Hanged Man - Devil - Moon - World
High Priestess - Hierophant - Strength - Justice - Temperance - Star - Judgment
Magician - Emperor - Chariot - Wheel of Fortune - Death - Tower - Sun
It's getting close to my bedtime, so I jumped ahead of myself and applied Golden Dawn elemental associations to the cards and came up with something interesting.

Quick lesson on Elemental Associations follows. Skip if you already know.

The four elements are Fire, Earth, Air and Water. Each of the 22 cards of the Major Arcana have been assigned an element. There are many systems of associations, but for this exercise, I used the GD system. Five Majors each are assigned to Water, Air and Earth, while seven Majors are assigned to Fire. Fire and Air are friendly elements to one another and they are both active elements. Water and Earth are friendly elements to one another and they are both passive elements.

The Outer Path contains 5 active elements and 2 passive elements. The Inner Path also contains 5 active elements and 2 passive elements. The Hidden path contains 6 passive elements and 1 active element. Both the Outer and Inner Paths end up being primarily Active, while the Hidden Path becomes overwhelming Passive.

In a way that makes sense to me. The Outer Path is what happens to you, while the Inner Path is how you react to what happens to you. It makes sense that both of those paths would be active. The Hidden Path is the spiritual path, which should be passive.

It probably doesn't make sense to apply Elemental Dignities (the interactions of the elements to one another) to the Seven Stations LAYOUT, but it would make sense to apply them to the Seven Stations SPREAD. A given card in a given position in the SPREAD could be weakened by the cards surrounding it. But it doesn't make sense to make a position in the LAYOUT weak because the home card of the position is weakened by the home cards of surrounding positions.

Does that make sense?

Rodney
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yaraluna
someone told me the other day ( and i read it somewhere too) that "the old systems don't work anymore. we are at a stage in our journey where we have to create our own systems". this reminded me of part of a post by Enrique Enriquez, where he tells you how reading cards is about you and the cards, and to 'create your own meanings'..."what are you going to learn from the books? someone else's interpretations?" he said something like that. i agree. we have to learn to have a relationship with the cards that allow us to communicate in feedback mode.
I guess I didn't get the memo about the old systems.

I've encountered Enrique's school of thought before (salut, Umbrae), and here's my take on it:

YES. Your relationship with the tarot should be immediate, intuitive, and evolving. Different cards can be interpreted entirely differently from moment to moment, dependent on the reader, the querent, the spread (or lack thereof), and so on. Since my primary perspective on the tarot is as that of an artist, I totally get this. If I'm creating a deck, each card should symbolically EVOKE the thoughts and emotions appropriate to that card, with a thousand shades of nuance and the power of free association baked right in for every individual who encounters the image. Now that I put it that way, although particularly true for the tarot, that's the goal of all great art in general, now isn't it?

HOWEVER, as for me personally, and I would venture to say the majority of people who are really into the tarot, it's unfair and unreasonable to categorically reject the many generations of tradition, thought and artistic endeavor that have gone into the tarot as we know it today. If free interpretation and intuitive divination are the right-brain aspects of tarot reading, does that mean that there is no role whatsoever for the left brain in this game?

Just as you quoted Enrique, I'd like to quote another user as well. The following is from Enchanted and is from this hread:

http://www.tarotforum.net/showthread.php?t=84727

Quote:
Originally Posted by Enchanted
I can only answer for myself, but why I study the cards and why I read the cards are two separate things. I study because I like to learn about different cultures, symbols, myth, history, art, astrology and so on. For me, tarot fuels a passion in everything that I have ever been interested in learning about, it's like a springboard for learning. Like where shall I go today, well I'll learn more about the myths associated with Artemis. I do it because I like to learn not because I think it will make me a better reader.

I enjoy reading, in a bookish sense, on AT and in books what other people think and other people's perspectives and experience, again that fuels my passion for learning. But if I don't agree on a possible meaning, I don't agree, but at the same time I don't dismiss it either, it is all down to individual experience, which is I guess the part I find fascinating.
How can this type of curiosity, research and study possibly do anything but help with your readings, provide more symbolic avenues to be explored, give us further insights on difficult questions from generations of others who have been down the same path as our own?

The wisest, most well-rounded and complete readings emerge from a synthesis of the right-brain AND left-brain preparations and development made by the reader. Regurgitating the LWB, OR throwing it away, both leave out important pieces of the puzzle.
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To continue my thoughts on the Right Brain / Left Brain / Synthesis (Three Paths, anyone?) perspective and bring things back on topic, I didn't "invent" or "create" this system, but rather I was inspired by others' examination of tarot through laying the cards in order onto a specific grid, and my own grid and interpretation thereof were dictated by the tarot itself.

And part of the motivation IS curiosity. Despite several scholars' assurances to the contrary, I like to believe that the creators of the original tarots had SOME reason for ordering the Trumps the way they did. Why is there a Strength and Temperance and Justice, for instance, but no Prudence? Why do we see the Sun and Moon and Stars, but no Planets? WTF is a "Chariot" doing in this group anyways? But I digress...

Anyways, regardless of the original intent and underlying symbolism of the Trumps, we know that the Golden Dawn folks imposed just all kinds of numerology, alchemy, astrology, Kaballism and more on their vision of the tarot. And if you read Waite or Case or Crowley, they're ALL taunting us with "and there's lots of stuff we're not telling you."

Well, since my mailbox isn't overflowing with invitations from Mystery Tradition Secret Societies to become an initiate, I have to read books and try to puzzle it out own my own.

What I'm trying to lead up to is this:

The Seven Stations is a series of patterns already there in the tarot -- patterns which my years of reading books on tarot, practical use of the cards for readings, and meditation on the symbols and thought systems involved have enabled me to perceive.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dangerdork
To continue my thoughts on the Right Brain / Left Brain / Synthesis (Three Paths, anyone?) perspective and bring things back on topic, I didn't "invent" or "create" this system, but rather I was inspired by others' examination of tarot through laying the cards in order onto a specific grid, and my own grid and interpretation thereof were dictated by the tarot itself.
dangerdork,

Fine. How about "discover" then? You discovered this system in much the same way that Columbus discovered America, the planets were discovered and vaccines are discovered. I believe you've done something great here and you should allow yourself to take some kind of credit for it!

Rodney
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dangerdork
I've made my first handouts for the Seven Stations series!

The Inner and Outer Path for each suit, illustrated with some popular and personal favorite decks, can be found at:
dangerdork,

I have all 8 of the decks you picked out. Question for you though. What is TRANSFOMRATION? That is on all the paths. (Just messing with you. I know you mean transformaton. )

Rodney
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