Tarot Book Club: Holistic Tarot


> Aeclectic Tarot Forum > Tarot > Tarot Books & Media




 
Shade's Avatar
Shade  Shade is offline
Oraculist
 
Join Date: 28 Aug 2002
Location: California, USA
Posts: 2,863
Shade 

Quote:
Originally Posted by gil View Post
Itís very much the approach I take. I come from a strong skeptical background, so it was the easiest way for me to take tarot seriously at first. Baby steps, you know. The more I read tarot, though, Iím finding this approach limiting in its explanatory power. The accuracy, and sometimes predictive nature, of reading tarot seems to render it as more than an elaborate Rorschach test.
I just have to say I think it's awesome that skeptical folks are able to enjoy Tarot as much as wanna soothsayers like m'self. When I try to think of how it could really be working to see the future I dip my toes into the pool of abject terror that I'm just talking to pieces of cardboard. I can see how a system like Tarot Analysis can work whether or not there is anything out there (or in here) greater than ourselves.
Top   #31
Shade's Avatar
Shade  Shade is offline
Oraculist
 
Join Date: 28 Aug 2002
Location: California, USA
Posts: 2,863
Shade 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kalliope View Post
Like Wen, I see tarot as accessing knowledge we didn't know we had. Sometimes seeing things laid out in cards helps us to connect to tidbits stored in the back of our minds, to figure out buried emotions or patterns we repeat, connect dots to see where things are headed, or even to admit we know deep down how someone is feeling in a relationship (even if it's contrary to what we desire).

These things might even LOOK like fortune telling or mind reading or psychic insight, in my experience. Most times the magic of tarot is the ability of the cards, as tools, to let us perform our own mental and intuitive magic.
I completely understand what you are saying. What I find intriguing about this book is that in the past I sort of thought of the "accessing info you know" process as completely formless and directionless. I thought of it as free association with tarot. What I like about this book's approach is that the process (and probably the process of our intuition) is much more analytical than I gave it credit for.
Top   #32
Tibor's Avatar
Tibor  Tibor is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 26 Mar 2009
Location: London, UK
Posts: 597
Tibor 

Some of my initial thoughts:

My first impression is that I like her 'Tarot Analytics' and this is roughly the way I read the Tarot especially since I have a degree in psychology. Having said that, I do like the divination aspect of Tarot and I wish she'd been a bit more relaxed when she wrote about it.

First she wrote: 'Tarot....It is a science of the mind', then she wrote: 'Art, which is what the tarot is,...'
The way I was thought at university is that psychology is the science of the mind. For me personally Tarot is an art not a science.

She does not explain very clearly the difference between the different faculties of the mind (conscious, subconscious, personal unconscious, collective unconscious), well in a way she does (in the Notes section) but I found it confusing the way she distinguishes between the subconscious and the unconscious. At first the way she described the unconscious made me think of it as a sealed box (nothing can come out of it) but then she levels it down to very close to the subconscious.

So I do not particularly agree with her categorisation of these different states of the mind although she clearly states that she is not trying to use these terms the same way they are used in psychology. Anyway, it's hard for me to wrap my head around her definitions of these different faculties and then try to apply them to the way I think about them.
As much as I like Jung I also support some of Freud's theories of the mind and so what unconscious means for me is pretty much the same as what subconscious is for Wen.

Another thing: The author clearly believes in past-lives as she mentions it when she defines 'personal unconscious' from a metaphysical point of view. It just made me wonder: if you believe in past-lives then wouldn't you believe in destiny? After all, in this current life-time you are who or what you are for a reason and that reason surely has something to do with who or what you were in your previous life? If you you believe in destiny wouldn't you be more open to the fortune-telling aspects of the Tarot.
I am not trying to discredit what the author said, neither do I support fortune-telling for all the wrong reasons she mentioned in her book; rather I am just trying to understand how the author thinks about Tarot and uses it as a tool for her 'tarot analytics' as opposed to divination.

Overall, I liked the first few chapters but I thought I would highlight some of the points that made me a bit confused as opposed to just mention what others have already highlighted (which were all great points BTW).
Top   #33
kalliope's Avatar
kalliope  kalliope is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 09 May 2005
Location: MA, USA
Posts: 1,343
kalliope 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shade View Post
I completely understand what you are saying. What I find intriguing about this book is that in the past I sort of thought of the "accessing info you know" process as completely formless and directionless. I thought of it as free association with tarot. What I like about this book's approach is that the process (and probably the process of our intuition) is much more analytical than I gave it credit for.
Yes, I'm very curious to see exactly what her analytical process really is. I'm someone who sees intuition largely as a mental process, more like how the term is used in psychological fields as opposed to colloquially meaning a "psychic flash of insight." There have been some good discussions about this on AT, mostly in the Lenormand forum. So although intuition can look like magic, I find it fascinating that "under the hood" it's a complex analytical process that usually happens too subtly and too quickly for us to follow or explain. If Wen's method is a way to reinforce and support that, make it more effective, and perhaps more transparent, that sounds very interesting to me!
Top   #34
Shade's Avatar
Shade  Shade is offline
Oraculist
 
Join Date: 28 Aug 2002
Location: California, USA
Posts: 2,863
Shade 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tibor View Post
Another thing: The author clearly believes in past-lives as she mentions it when she defines 'personal unconscious' from a metaphysical point of view. It just made me wonder: if you believe in past-lives then wouldn't you believe in destiny? After all, in this current life-time you are who or what you are for a reason and that reason surely has something to do with who or what you were in your previous life? If you you believe in destiny wouldn't you be more open to the fortune-telling aspects of the Tarot.
I think you can believe in past lives and still think that your choices are your own in this one. The emphasis here does seem largely on looking within to find out what would be best for us in the here and now.
Top   #35

Critty  Critty is offline
Resident
 
Join Date: 09 Jan 2014
Location: Canada
Posts: 2
Critty 

I've been enjoying the book and the discussion here. I have a horrible inner ear infection which is causing vertigo when I am upright, and although it's getting better I can't sit at my computer yet to comment. Laying down and typing on iPad is frustrating, so I will be back hopefully by next week.
Top   #36
kalliope's Avatar
kalliope  kalliope is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 09 May 2005
Location: MA, USA
Posts: 1,343
kalliope 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tibor View Post
Another thing: The author clearly believes in past-lives as she mentions it when she defines 'personal unconscious' from a metaphysical point of view. It just made me wonder: if you believe in past-lives then wouldn't you believe in destiny? After all, in this current life-time you are who or what you are for a reason and that reason surely has something to do with who or what you were in your previous life? If you you believe in destiny wouldn't you be more open to the fortune-telling aspects of the Tarot.
I am not trying to discredit what the author said, neither do I support fortune-telling for all the wrong reasons she mentioned in her book; rather I am just trying to understand how the author thinks about Tarot and uses it as a tool for her 'tarot analytics' as opposed to divination.
Tibor, it's interesting what you said in your post about her definitions of unconscious vs subconscious. I must have glossed over that bit, but now you have me curious and I'll have to go find where she discusses those concepts.

As for the reincarnation stuff, I agree with Shade that the ideas of past lives and free will aren't mutually exclusive, and I'd probably argue that they in fact can't be if the cycle is to continue. The whole premise centers on the set-up for the next life being caused or shaped by the previous one, which means that one's actions and choices have consequences down the line. I don't see how a set future (to be seen via fortune-telling) must exist just because one believes current life circumstances were affected by a past life. After all, free choice in the current life will determine yet the next one, and so on, right? So I don't think she is inconsistent with regards to her lack of belief in a set Destiny. But then again, I'm just talking off the top of my head, here, and missed this section of Wen's text, too. (Where the heck was my mind when I was reading this chapter? )

Plus, I tend to be of the opinion that even if there are fated energies that we must deal with in life, there are a multitude of ways that energy could manifest for us, and our actions help solidify or change their shape, so I think we can interact with and affect our destiny in that way.
Top   #37
kalliope's Avatar
kalliope  kalliope is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 09 May 2005
Location: MA, USA
Posts: 1,343
kalliope 

A few very brief thoughts on Chapters 2 and 3:

Chapter 2 made me want to seek out The Tarot of the Bohemians. But otherwise, it was just a decent summary of things, no major thoughts about it.

Chapter 3 was a brave, as you say, Shade! I liked that she just presented the extremely mundane theories, like the Barnum, Patternicity, projective psychology, etc, and but pretty much says said that even if tarot is only that, it's still effective and beneficial and worth pursuing.

I also enjoyed the metaphor of tarot as a flashlight shining on the path ahead, and her description of the theory of Qi, which sounds like what a lot of more spiritually-oriented readers may identify with, but from a more Eastern perspective.
Top   #38
Shade's Avatar
Shade  Shade is offline
Oraculist
 
Join Date: 28 Aug 2002
Location: California, USA
Posts: 2,863
Shade 

Chapter 4 that age old topic: Which deck should I use. The book gives a much more considered answer than I do. Usually I say "Buy a Rider Waite or buy a Rider Waite and one other deck whose artwork you enjoy."

What I hadn't thought of before was that the prevalence of the Rider Waite also meant that the Golden Dawn tarot system was also quite prevalent and that most of us are Golden Dawn types whether we recognize it or not.

I also liked the reasoning behind the care and feeding of a tarot deck. It was very clear: this is to help you. By taking meticulous care of a deck you will relate to it as a sacred tool. The comparison with violinists and athletes seems apt. After reading about how Joshua Bell, the violinist who played the music for the Tarot themed movie The Red Violin, sought out a particular Stradivarius I became interested in getting and reading with vintage decks. They do feel different to me and it has quite a bit to do with the way I treat them.
Top   #39
Shade's Avatar
Shade  Shade is offline
Oraculist
 
Join Date: 28 Aug 2002
Location: California, USA
Posts: 2,863
Shade 

And in Chapter 5 we investigate the Rider Waite Smith's components. There is a lot of attention here to the Astrological and elemental considerations for the cards. I think I have become guilty of thinking of the Four of Cups as having a Four of Cups meaning and not considering its four-ness and its cups-ness.

What did others think of the elemental and astrological correspondences for the RWS?

The discussion of Yin and Yang energy was pretty interesting. Again I think it's good to step back and see the cards for their components as well as their particular message.
Top   #40
Elsewhere on the Tarot Forum
Popular Tarot Boards
· Using Tarot Cards
· Talking Tarot
· Tarot Spreads
· Tarot Decks
· Rider-Waite-Smith

Special Interest Boards
· Astrology
· Crystals & Herbs
· Divination
· Lenormand
· Spirituality

Popular Tarot Threads
· Pet Peeves
· Timing of cards
· Interesting tarot pairs
· The Moon as how someone feels
· The World as feelings

More Tarot Threads
· Cards for certain events
· Tarot meanings for health
· List of Tarot Questions
· Can Tarot be Dangerous?
· List of Tarot Myths



Elsewhere on Aeclectic Tarot
· Tarot Cards & Reviews
· Free Tarot Readings
· Tarot eBooks
· Tarot Card Meanings

Copyright © 1996 - 2021 Aeclectic Tarot. All rights reserved. Privacy Policy. Contact us. About us.