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Tarot Hermeneutics

Exploring How We Create Meaning with Tarot


Mock SRT

January 8th and 15th 2013:


January 8th and 15th We will read and discuss in part Whitley Strieber’s The Path

Following a cruciform layout, this book offers some unique ways of using the Major Arcana ostensibly influenced by the 4th way teaching of Gurdjieff. The deck illustrated is the Camoin-Jorodowsky restored Marseille Deck. 

This info is selected from Wikipedia

Louis Whitley Strieber is an American writer best known for his horror novels The Wolfen and The Hunger and for Communion, a non-fiction account of his perceived experiences with non-human entities. He has maintained a dual career of author (of fiction) and advocate of alternative concepts (through non-fiction, his Unknown Country website, and his internet podcast, Dreamland).

Whitley Streiber is currently a practicing Catholic. He was also formerly associated with the Gurdjieff Foundation. He left the Foundation shortly before the experiences reported in Communion but remains interested in the mystical teachings of G. I. Gurdjieff and P. D. Ouspensky and makes frequent references to them in his non-fiction writings, including The Path.

Begins January 22nd

Waters of Eden: Exploring Kabbalistic  Tarots as the Spirit of Life

In these teleconferences we will explore the Kabbalah as relevent to our tarot understanding and readings for clients. Unlike many approaches that offer stark analogs with the Tree of Life, we will consider a more gentle view of the symbolism as it relates to experience and as template for our own diverse experiences and ideas of spirituality. We will read and reference exceptionally well-written material by Pamela Eakins, Rachel Pollack, and Melila Hellner-Eshed. We will read and discuss these in turn the first hour of our call. The second hour will be devoted to exercises in reading and interpretation with your own tarot deck.

As usual we proceed collegially, sharing responsibility for adapting and understanding the material. Because of our open-ended, topic-driven approach, we can speed up or slow down as our consensus develops around the ideas experienced.

This is a free teleconference and people are welcome to call-in whenever they want or can to participate. However when new to the calls, take some time to listen and figure out where the group is and then freely contribute as you want.

From time to time other special material will be considered. Each week I send out a reminder notice whch will alert you to changes in topic or other news. Email me with your email address you want to receive these reminders. Likewise send the email address to me again when you want to be removed.

The books and decks dealt with:

  1.  Pamela & Joyce Eakins' book and deck Tarot of the Spirit,  (I recommend you purchase any items you do not have from the authors’ themselves.)
  2. Rachel Pollack’s two books, The Forest of Souls (maybe out of print look here) and Soul Forest,  and her deck The Shining Tribe,
  3. and A River Flows from Eden: The Language of Mystical Experience in the Zohar by Melila Hellner-Eshed.


Initially any tarot deck of your choice is fine for exercises. Eventually we will tackle in turn, the decks the The Shining Tribe Tarot by Rachel Pollack and Tarot of the Spirit by Pamela Eakins as painted by her mother, Joyce Eakins.


Past Classes:

The Way to Tarot Wisdom:
A reading and discussion teleconference featuring:

is a tarot study and dialogue designed for people who wish to sharpen their skills as tarot readers and who enjoy unpressured collegial conversation on the symbolic and spiritual aspects of life.

My teaching orientation at this time is mainly aimed at intermediate tarot readers. I define an intermediate tarot reader as someone who is familiar with the basics of their deck and can do a simple reading without consulting a book. The basics of the deck includes being familiar with the images and symbolism used in the deck and being familiar with general aspects of tarot history and lore.

If someone is looking for a thorough introduction to the tarot including personal tutorials, I suggest you take advantage of the classes and audio programs offered by the Tarot School. Ruth Ann and Wald Amberstone have developed a richly thorough introduction to tarot, using the Rider Waite Smith (RWS)as their basic the deck of orientation, and offering personal coaching to develop reading skills and confidence.

For self-starters and learners, the free online introduction to Tarot by Joan Bunning is a welcome and much admired way to learn the basics.

The classes I offer here are of two basic types: experimental and tutorial. The first, experimental, is when I and other collaborators explore new dimensions of tarot interpretation and application to particular issues and subjects as they are suggested and formatted. Anyone may suggest a topic for consideration. Some of my proposed classes fit the experimental type.

I personally like to work in a collaborative and collegial environment. I am a social learner and discover my own thinking through conversation with others from whom I am learning as well as sharing my own knowledge. Students in experimental classes are expected to bring their own basic knowledge and life experience to the subjects and issues talked about. No matter what the issues that are discussed we will always ground them in a consultation with the tarot.

The other type of class that I offer are tutorials in tarot classic literature. For instance the collaborative class on Meditations on the Tarot: A Journey into Christian Hermeticism by anonymous can be considered a tutorial. Like the experimental classes participation is seen as collaborative and collegial but in this case we are more involved in the discipline of understanding the work in question, consulting of the tarot as an adjunct to our own discussions and studied based on the text we are using.

Other proposed tutorials included close critical readings of  Mystical Origins of the Tarot: From Ancient Roots to Modern Usage by Paul Huson (Destiny Books) using his Dame Fortune's Wheel Tarot by Paul Huson (Lo Scarabeo); a Tarot critical reading of Dia Léon's Origins of the Tarot: Cosmic Evolution and the Principles of Immortality (Frog Press) [see Dai's bio]; and a Tarot Critical Reading of The Way of Tarot: The Spiritual Teacher in the Cards by Alejandro Jodorowsky, Marianne Costa (Destiny Books).

The next scheduled tutorial is a Thoth-Tarot Critical Reading of Promethea by Alan Moore, [See Paul's review and Alan Moore's notes].

A Thoth-tarot critical reading of Promethea is the next free teleconference offered on Wednesday mornings between 10 AM and 12 noon on Wednesdays.

The exact date for its beginning will be announced when scheduled. For more info, format and schedule.

At this time most classes are done over the telephone or through telephony by computer, like Skype. Optimal class time is usually two hours at least once a week. Of course this can be adapted to the participants schedules.

Beside regular conversation classes investigating a topic or theme, there is plans on offering through Internet radio, discussion classes for the public as part of our promotion of our tarot research and learning. Doing gratis readings for the public is also a function of the radio shows.

The purpose of these classes is to release the natural creativity and insight that consulting the tarot liberates from our humdrum thinking and understanding. The insight and knowledge generated can easily be the basis for creative projects in tarot creation and also in a deeper understanding in the uses of tarot and the meaning of the cards.

Because the classes are intricate and of long duration, these and other tuition for the class will be kept to a minimum to encourage a commitment to the work in progress.

Please look at proposed classes to see if there are any particular classes mentioned there that you are interested in. At this time classes will probably be organized on an ad hoc basis, to meet the interests and energies of the participants and collaborators.

Proposed Classes

Visit to see some of the classes I propose. Some may never occur unless I find there is some interest in our community to pursue them in a class.

Also other pipe dream classes are listed here. Any of them are possible or others as they will only manifest if a small group reaches critical mass to make them happen.

Overview of the Tree of Life

Our inaugural series of  teleconference classes explores the kabalistic analogies and correspondences of tree of life symbolism as adapted to the tarot. This series goes through many useful ways to deepen your own view of what the cards are suggesting spiritually.

Free preview class facilitated by Joy Vernon and Paul Nagy is available as a sample class free to download and listen to.

The Tree of Life: Below the Veil

First of 6 Series Facilitated by Joy Vernon and Paul Nagy

We begin our journey up the Tree of Life from the world we live in: the world of manifestation, Malkuth. This series of six sessions examines the lowest four Sephiroth (Spheres) of the Tree of Life and their connecting Paths. Focusing on a collegial format grounded in the sharing of knowledge, we will ponder the symbolism of each sephirah, then extrapolate the meaning of the paths that connect them. Take-home exercises using tarot spreads to further explore this symbolism will be provided.

More info.


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