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Thursday, May 13, 2010

Tarot Study: The Fool~0, The Magician~1, And The High Priestess~2

Recently a comment came in by "shiresun" regarding the past post, Thoughts On Tarot Deck Hierarchy and Symbolism. The comment reminded me that over three years ago I had done a complete, self-study of The Robin Wood Tarot on Aeclectic Tarot. My actual study is within a group study of the deck by the same name. Which brings me to this post...how 'bout I reprint what I had written about the various cards in Robin's deck, a little at a time...say, 3 cards per post?! We'll begin with the Major Arcana and then go on to the Minor Arcana. Even if you don't have or are not familiar with The Robin Wood Tarot Deck, what I came up with back then may still prove useful. You may even want to consider buying the deck to come along on this study ride with me. And if YOU have more to add about any card, then please do so in the comment section of this blog. I'll date what I had written, so you can see how I felt "back then"...after all, I may have changed my opinion since then!

'course I'll intersperse posts about other topics in between this Tarot study, just to keep things fresh, varied, and hopefully interesting on the blog. Regular readers of this blog know that Tarot is just ONE of the many things I'm interested in!

I'll begin with a few AT posts (from here on out, this refers to past posts I wrote on Aeclectic Tarot) that I wrote about regarding "The Robin Wood Tarot ~ The Book"...which btw, did not come with my card deck and was purchased separately.

May 5, 2007 ~ The Book
Have started rereading Robin Wood's own book in order to take part in the study group that Lewen began recently. I really like Robin's conversational style...you can tell she writes like she talks in person. It's straightforward and honest writing. I, personally, would LOVE to meet Robin sometime. She's living near my old homecity of Detroit. Maybe someday....

I particularly like that the entirety of Chapter two, "The True History of the Tarot," is:

"The true history of the tarot can be told in a single sentence. No one knows, and does it really make any difference?"

Devoting a whole chapter to just two sentences is PROFOUND in and of itself. Folks who are passionate about things, such as we are about the Tarot, can possibly find ourselves wallowing in details...storming in teacups, so to speak. Is this really necessary?

Does it really matter that the Tarot just might not have come from Egypt...or was possibly not developed in the 14th century, but some later century? Do such details take away the credibility or the amazing possibilities the Tarot can teach us? Do things HAVE to be ancient to be of immense worth?

I, for one, don't think so. The Tarot has already shown me and given me so very much, I wouldn't personally care if it was developed last week.

May 6, 2007 ~ The BookReread chapter's 4 and 5 last night. Again was struck by Robin's honesty and lovely, relaxed style of writing...especially as she explained how her own deck evolved over the years. LOVE how Robin gives key words to think about for "Common Symbols" found not only in her deck but other decks, as well. She's quick to explain that this is what SHE feels/sees when such symbols pop up and we may very well have other reactions to the same symbols. But as a starting point, I find her key words very helpful. When I first read the same chapter over a year ago, everything I read bordered on being excitingly overwhelming. Now, looking at the same writing with a year + of reading under my belt, it's all beginning to fall into place. Nice feeling! I always feel thrilled when I find something I really love and know I can study 'til the end of my life and not learn it all. It's exhilarating!

May 10, 2007 ~ The Book
When I first read Robin's book over a year ago, I found the information in Chapter 12 to be of extreme value. Grounding and centering have become a "must" for me before I read...or even if I don't read, for that matter...and Robin's directions and gentle lead have proven invaluable to me. I had even written Robin's grounding and centering directions on an index card, until I had them secure in my brain. Now, all I can say is that I KNOW when I've not grounded and centered and need to. Jax, (Canadian Tarot Reader), mentions that grounding helps one to make use of the energy of the earth when reading, and therefore you don't come away feeling drained by using up only your, personal, energy. Great advice! Good for those who read for only for oneself, but imperative, in my humble opinion, if you read for others.

May 4, 2007 ~ The Fool (0) To jump right into the study group started by Lewen, I reread the first couple chapters (had read the entire book about a year ago but am excited to go back with a finer tooth comb...) AND I took a long look at the "Fool" in Robin's deck. I feel I can personally relate deeply to the Fool. For one thing, it's the journey of anything...life, work, relationships, projects, etc. that interests me more than reaching the finish line. Is now and always has been, even when I was a kid. That, for me, is the essence of the Fool. On his back he has everything necessary for that journey (of life)...HE (the card has a very male feeling to me for some reason) doesn't necessarily know how to use the tools. He may know the tools are in the pack, but then again, he may not OR he may forget he even has them...a bit scatterbrained, perhaps or maybe just so full of joy and innocence, nothing but how he's feeling and the journey ahead really matters. In fact, he may be so excited to be off on his adventure, he can't even feel the weight of the pack on his own back. This card reminds me, in its positive sense, to never lose the child-like wonder we were born with. Life's blows has a way of diminishing that wonder in each of us. The Fool hasn't been tainted yet by those blows. He's set out on an adventure where ANYTHING can happen. He's not worried that the "anything" might be bad. He's got joy in his heart, a blue sky overhead and his faithful companion at his side. But wait, is the dog barking to remind him that he's getting awfully close to that mountain's edge? Or is the dog just as excited as he is? Maybe better pay at least a wee bit closer attention to details on this journey, eh?...like where the road ends, which way might be best to turn, packing some rations since there might be no where to get food down the line (oops, forgot that!), considering where to sleep for the night...Aah, but the Fool's not worried about any of that just yet. For now, he's just happy to be starting. He'll worry about the rest like Scarlett O-Hara in "Gone With The Wind": "I can't think about that right now. If I do, I'll go crazy. I'll think about that tomorrow."

Added in a separate post, same day:
Remembered another thing that comes to my mind when thinking about the Fool...To quote Bob Dylan, "He not busy being born is busy dying."

May 7, 2007 ~ The Magician (1) The Magician...in Robin's deck he sure is a good-looking guy, eh? And I love the twinkle in his eyes. Here's a man with loads of charm, wit and a supreme sense of humor. Couple that with being a man who's willing to share his expertise on ALL things magickal and that's someone I wouldn't mind spending time with. In some decks I've seen, the Magician seems unapproachable. Not so in Robin's deck. Full of mystery...yes. But mysteries that can be attainable. I like that Robin's key word for this card is "creativity." This is not stagnant information that the Magician is willing to teach, but information that bursts with life in all its possibilities. He has a handle on the four elements, the conscious and the unconscious mind and understands the "now" as well as the past and future. Wow! Very powerful!! Makes me want to jump off my chair and DO SOMETHING positive and life-changing RIGHT NOW!

May 8, 2007 ~ The High Priestess (2)
Whenever I encounter Robin's rendition of the High Priestess, calm settles over me. The colors in the card are mysterious, peaceful and soothing. And I'm someone who walks into walls on or near full moons, so that's saying a lot! Her beautiful eyes have a way of settling me and making me stop to listen.

The truly lovely High Priestess, young as she is shown, has deep wisdom within her. It reminds me that old age does not necessarily mean wisdom and a young age does not necessarily mean lack thereof. Not only does she hold the secrets of the unknown in her right hand, but she's not afraid to share the knowledge she's gleened from the book in her left hand. I also feel she wouldn't be ashamed to check out particular points in the book, should she need a refresher...or even, perhaps, to "say it in a different way," should the person she's speaking to need clarification.



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