Esoteric Tarot

Author(s): Ronald Decker

Tarot Books | Occulture

That the Tarot originated in ancient Egypt as a divinatory tool is a romantic misconception. Ron Decker's meticulous scholarship will surprise practitioners and academics alike, revealing the Tarot's true evolution and meanings as its inventor(s) understood it. The Tarot consists of the Minor Arcana, four suits of cards similar to our modern deck, and the Major Arcana, twenty-two allegorical or "trump" cards. Decker says the four-suit deck was invented in Asia Minor before AD 1000; Italian courtiers added the trumps in the 1400s. But Tarot was first used as a game. Tarot divination was only created in the 1700s by a Parisian fortuneteller who based the trump images on Hermeticism, which merges Greco-Egyptian alchemy, astrology, numerology, magic, and mysticism. Today, the suit-cards are often traced to the ancient Jewish Cabala. But, says Decker, they, too, acquired their meanings only in the 1700s, and he cites a lost numerical system based on Cabala at that time. Decker's interpretation integrates three whole systems-astrological, arithmological, mystagogical (concerning initiation rites into the Mysteries). His depth of knowledge makes the book a must-have for serious students of Tarot and esotericism.

$46.95(AUD)


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"A rigorously researched book that serves as the basis for Decker's arguments for a Tarot richly rooted in an ancient cosmic worldview--one that continues to speak to us today."-- Paul Quinn, author, "Tarot for Life""I have been following Ronald Decker's work for many years, and he has been developing the themes expressed in "The Esoteric Tarot" in articles and in books that he has written since the early 1990s. His views may be surprising to some, but everything Decker writes is carefully researched and contemplated. There is no other author I trust more than Decker for insights into the Tarot's history and symbolism."-- Robert M. Place, creator of The Alchemical Tarot and author of "The Tarot: History, Symbolism, and Divination""Noted art and playing card historian Ronald Decker deeply probes the Hermetic, Neoplatonic and Kabbalistic esoteric systems studied by Renaissance intellectuals and finds sufficient significant congruency between their symbols and tarot cards to build his intriguing theory that the tarot trumps may well have originated as a device with multilevel meanings developed for psychological and philosophical introspection, possibly divination.Most important to Decker's theory is his close examination of the life and theories of eighteenth century Parisian card reader Jean-Baptiste Alliette, who, perceiving the Hermetic resonances of the cards, first popularized the use of tarot cards for divination purposes under the pseudonym 'Etteilla.' His card interpretations became the basis for those of the Order of the Golden Dawn, and indeed form the basis of most tarot card interpretations used today.Obviously this is an impressive book not to be missed; as readable as it is learned, it should have a definite appeal to tarot historian and tarot reader alike."-- Paul Huson, author, "Mystical Origins of the Tarot"

Ronald Decker holds a B.A. in fine art from State University College at Buffalo and a M.A. in painting from the University of Cincinnati graduate school. He has taught art and art history at all levels of education. Until his retirement, he was curator of antique cards at The U.S. Playing Card Company. He has studied Tarot cards in public and private collections in all of Europe's capitols as well as Turkey, Egypt, and India. Tarot and the Esoteric Traditions is his fourth book about the cards.

General Fields

  • : 9780835609081
  • : Quest Books,U.S.
  • : Quest Books,U.S.
  • : 0.481
  • : June 2013
  • : 229mm X 152mm X 23mm
  • : United States
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Ronald Decker
  • : Paperback
  • : 312
  • : Illustrations