Book: The Book Of Thoth A Short Essay On The Tarot Of The Egyptians Being The Equinox Volume Iii No V by Aleister CrowleyCrowley sets his whimsical, humorous (notorious?) writing style aside, to take a deep, reverent look at The Tarot. This book contains more information about The Tarot and the Creation of The Tarot than numerous other books combined. This is not a "fluffy" book for amateurs, but a well-written and researched work connecting The Tarot with The Qabalah and Astrology. If the tiny booklet in the Tarot package left you wanting, this is the book you desire to fulfill your hunger and thirst for more knowledge. I have been reading books about The Tarot for ten years and "The Book of Thoth" has quenched my thirst.
However, I also recommend purchasing "The Tarot Handbook: Practical Applications of Ancient Symbols," by Angeles Arrien ("Tarot Symbols from a Psychological, Mythological, and Cross-Cultural Perspective"). "The Tarot Handbook...." by Arrien, uses Illustrations of "The Thoth Deck," by Crowley and Lady Frieda Haris to explain the Jungian Psychology of the system, and gives a Helpful Overview of Interpreting the Thoth deck.
So-far, "The Thoth Deck" is the BEST deck I have ever found (I collect Numerous decks) aside from "The Ceremonial Magick Deck" (by Lon Duquette) & "The Masonic Tarot" (which is hard to find). Nearly every Serious Tarot User/Student I know uses The Thoth Deck, with wonderful & Accurate Results.
I do suggest, however, finding the Palm-sized Thoth deck, as opposed to the Oversized Deck--which is harder to manipulate. The cards work on a principle of Psychokenisis combined with Jungian Psychology. But, whatever works for you, personally. "The Book of Thoth" is a great asset to any Tarot Library and a good place to start studying the System. However, many people need to begin with a simple deck, such as Rider-Waite, before delving into the in-depth study of Crowley's works.
Aleister Crowley's writing (in general) certainly is one of the most complex styles that I have come across. Quite a learned man, however one must realize to bypass the content of his words and see through them as if they were covers to different tombs of knowledge, understanding and wisdom. His Book of Thoth (Egyptian Tarot) may be his best work and seeming most thought out (aside from Magick: Book 4). To buy the book is not enough, one surely would need the card set as well to get the full effect of his descriptions of the cards. Introducing the Tarot in history as well as the inflential men of the Tarot. Highly regarding Eliphas Levi and his book Transcendental Magic: Its Dogma and History as one the best and classic works on the Tarot (also suggested is Paul Foster Cases book "The Tarot: The Wisdom of the Ages").
I would say that Tarot Divnitors are not advised for this book because Crowley does not use the cards to fortell anothers future, but rather as meditative devices to alter ones consciousness and peer into the unknown world, seeing the other universe - that is prophecy. After explaining the relationship of the Qaballah, he moves on to the deck itself beginning like most with the Fool. Going through all 22 Trumps and 56 Minor cards deciphering the cards himself and placing it in word symbols for you to figure out. Its not often one can understand this at first reading. Many readings are neccessary, as well as looking through many other books of Tarot and occultism to begin to unlock Crowleys 'tombs.' You will soon find yourself not reading it, but referring to it like one uses a dictionary.
If one wants a fresh new look at what Crowley is talking implying in all of his sublime wordiness, I highly and strongly reccomend Timothy Leary's book "Game of Life" and "Info-Psychology." The former is a dedication to Crowleys work on the Tarot told in Leary's style (which he equates evolution with Tarot), while the latter is Leary's own neuraliterate book which ties in with the former. The Book of Thoth is the most original book to date on the Tarot system and highly reccomended for anyone looking to understand truly what the cards mean, as well as Crowleyites and occultists in general. A wonderful piece of work!
The Book Of Thoth A Short Essay On The Tarot Of The Egyptians Being The Equinox Volume Iii No V
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