Geometry and Tarot


I haven't corresponded on this forum for a while as my research into the underlying geomertry has led me on a wonderful path through history, art and mathematics, all embodied in the magnificent Visconti-Sforza (gold foil) deck. I believe I have cracked the geometric key and the implications have taken me into such diverse fields as Byzantine Iconography, number theory,
geometry, applied mathematics, Gothic architecture, history and philosophy.

As a result I believe I have now established a genuine link between this particular deck and the Cathars via a geometric code. I am now writing up my findings and hope to be able to share them with other like minded people. Based on my preliminary research, I have been asked to present a paper on this topic at the upcoming Tarot Conference in Melbourne (Australia) in July 2005.

Thank you to all who helped me at the outset of this journey.


le pendu

I look forward to hearing more about this! Congratulations geomancer.


Looking forward to a preview :D

In case you're interested, and though it may in fact lead in the opposite direction which you have taken, do have a look at Robert O'Neill's Catharism and Tarot (can't remember if I previously lent you a copy - in any case available online).


Thank you for the reference to O'Neill but I have used it and found it very helpful. Looking back at my notes I made the comments that I agree with his conclusion that no Cathar/Gnostic links exist given his research criteria, however by using a different criteria to analyse the available evidence I am of the opinion (at the present stage) that the balance could well be swayed in the affirmative.


geomancer, your proposition sounds interesting. Do you have it written up online anywhere?


I have the document on my desk as part of the Journal Taros... a little on hold as the DVDs from the Conference and have taken some precedence over this last.

An e.version is also expected to be made available as a pdf... check in a couple of months as my backlog of things diminish!

Bat Chicken

Geomancer - I would really love to see that! I am new at Tarot and the like and found resources on some of the topics you mentioned, coming from an entirely different direction.

Your article/seminar sounds fascinating and I would REALLY love to read it... just got a copy of Fulcanelli.... and read Rucker - I would love to learn more - any suggestions? (other than O'Neill obviously - will look at that thanks to jmd!) :)


My understanding is that the first paper with reference to my reseach is due out very shortly.

This paper deals with the Visconti-Sforza deck and analyses the images in an historicak and heraldic manner. I also dicuss the application of the geometric template which determines the inter relataionships of the cards to then tell the story of the Cathar theology.

Although I oroiginally started out on this path by a lecture on the symbology of tarot, the thrust of my research has been around only the one deck at a particular point in time. As I progressed I tried applying the template to other enigmas and have had very successful results that link a number of esoteric streams through history.

My library is always expanding and I just follow leads that have some tantalising snippetts of the puzzle. So far I have not found any one book with the answers. The answers are there, waiting for someone to come along seeking to ask the right questions.

One of the disciplines I have been exploring is alchemy. There is a plate (Emblem 21) from "Atlanta Fugiens" by M. Maeir that has been used in various publications. The standard explanation is that the "magician" is trying to square the circle. This explanation is accepted without question or any logical proof. By questioning this belief and looking at the original statement the real answer is there.

It is in actual fact a question and response scenario (Freemasonry initiation ceremony, role playing gamers (D&D)). The question in this case is:

1. Given a cube of a known surface area, draw me a sphere of equal surface area using geometric means (pencil, straight edge, compass).
2. Given a sphere of known surface area, draw me a cube of equal surface area using geometric means.

The answer is Emblem 21.

Where am I leading? The answer is obtained by the same geometric template that is used in the Visconti-Sforza deck and found in the the great Pyramid of Khufu (Cheops), as well as other enigmas.

The book that has given me the best modern insight into alchemy is "The Philosopher's Stone" by Peter Marshal.

I hope this has been of some help to you and may your journey be as rewarding as mine.

Bat Chicken

Thank you for the suggestions, Geomancer. I have that deck - so you can be sure I will be taking a closer look at it. Having read a very basic intro in sacred geometry I am familiar with the 'squaring of the circle' and am anxious to see the connections.

I will have a look at the book you suggested and look forward to reading your article when it's available. At some point, I hope we can discuss it and other symbology of the Tarot!

Pleasure to meet you here.....