-----------------------------------------------------------------------ORIGIN by Alexandro JODOROWSKY -----------------------------------------------------------------------No one knows who created Tarot, or where, or when.

No one knows what that word means or what language it comes from. Nor is it known whether playing cards come from it or whether it is the end result of a slow evolution which would have begun with the creation of a deck called naïbbe (cards) to which the MAJOR ARCANA and the COURT CARDS would have later been added. Unquestionably the earliest reference mark is the interdiction of the deck of cards in Berne in 1376. In 1392, it is mentioned in the books of Charles Peupart, treasurer of Charles VI, that Jacquemin Gringonneur of Paris was paid 56 pence to paint three gilded decks of cards. But that does not mean that Gringonneur invented Tarot. In 1377, a German monk named Johannes mentions a deck of cards which he saw in Switzerland. In Spain, the deck of cards is first mentioned in 1378. In 1457, Saint Anthony refers to Tarot in his "Treatise on theology". And in 1500, a Latin manuscript -"Sermones de ludo cum aliis"- comprises a list of the MAJOR ARCANA. Until the 18th century, Tarot is thought of as a game of chance and its deeper meaning goes unnoticed. Its features are copied, modified, mutilated, embellished, adorned with portraits of the nobility, they serve the court's ostentation. But in 1781, French author Court de Gébelin rediscovers the Tarot (of Marseilles) and presents it in the ninth

volume of his "Primitive World". Adding a zero to Le Mat (the Fool), misnumbering the Hermit and Temperance, adding a leg to the Magician's table, modifying the Pope's scepter, drawing the Hanged Man standing up, etc., he thus claims to correct the "mistake" of the original and, ignoring his own inaccuracies, attributes to Tarot a purely invented origin: the 22 MAJOR ARCANA would be hieroglyphs from the "Book of Thoth" saved from the ruins of Egyptian temples over a thousand years ago... Ten years later, a soothsayer in vogue, the barber Eteilla "restores" the "meaning" of the Tarot of Marseilles and sets between his whimsical Arcana no less whimsical links with Astrology and Kabbala. Since then, thousands of books have been written to the effect that Tarot comes from the Egyptians, the Chaldeans, the Hebrews, the Arabs, the Hindus, the Greeks, the Chinese, the Mayas, Extraterrestrials, Superhumans, when one does not evoke Atlantis or Adam himself, suspected of having designed the first sketches! The word TAROT would be Egyptian (TAR path; RO, ROS, ROB: royal), Indo-Tartar (TAN-TARA: zodiac) Hebrew (TORA: law), Latin (ROTA: wheel; ORAT: he speaks), Sanskrit ( TAT: the whole; TAR-O: fixed star), Chinese (TAO), etc. Various ethnic and religious groups, various secret societies have claimed authorship: Gypsies, Jews, Freemasons, Rosicrucians, Sufis... Influences from the Gospel and Revelation can be seen (in cards such as the WORLD, the HANGED MAN, the EMPRESS, JUSTICE, TEMPERANCE, STRENGTH, The DEVIL, The POPE, JUDGMENT), as well as Tantric teachings, the "I Ching" and the Aztec Solar Calendar. Some see Tarot as being alchemical, cabalistic, astrological, arithmomancean. Every society, every esoteric group, every branch of magic, every Initiate, every nationality, every artist then feels the need to finally paint the real Tarot... In the past two hundred years, over seven thousand new decks have appeared! Hundreds of ancient cards saved from libraries in order to retrieve the original cards!Out of this entanglement of limited, naive, fanciful, mercantile, pseudo-historic, romantic, schizophrenic, conceited or mitigated interpretations, out of this superposition of dogmatisms and Systems, finally springs the

TAROT OF MARSEILLES, an authentic monument, anonymous as is all sacred art... -----------------------------------------------------------------------RESTORING THE TAROT OF MARSEILLES by Alexandro JODOROWSKY -----------------------------------------------------------------------After studying Tarot for over 40 years, I met in Paris Philippe Camoin, who is the direct heir of the Camoin family, the last of Tarot of Marseilles printers in Marseilles. The origin of the factory dates back to 1760; it was created by Nicolas Conver, who at that time carved the most celebrated Tarot of Marseilles, the Nicolas Conver Tarot of Marseilles (reissued in 1965 by Camoin House). From the outset we decided to work together on restoring the Tarot of Marseilles such as it originally was. Knowing secrets facts regarding its history, manufacturing, tradition, symbolism and being in possession of original plates, we were the only ones who could restore the original Tarot of Marseilles. We studied and compared on computer innumerable versions of the Tarot of Marseilles, among which were the Tarot of Nicolas Conver, the tarot of Doodle, the Tarot of François Tourcaty, the Tarot of Fautrier, the Tarot of Jean-Pierre Payen, the Tarot of Suzanne Bernardin, the Tarot of Besançon by Lequart, etc. The difficulty inherent in such a task of restoration lies in the fact the Tarot of Marseilles is made of symbols which are tightly intertwined and linked to each other; if one modifies one single feature, the whole structure collapses. One must therefore be fully aware of its creator's plan and real intentions in order to achieve such a work without danger. Back in the 17th century, there existed many printers of the Tarot of Marseilles. 18th century Tarot decks were copied on those. Consequently one cannot assess that an 18th century Tarot is the original Tarot. It is then easy to accept that even the 1760, the Nicolas Conver Tarot contains errors and omissions. What happened to all those 17th century decks? If there are none left, it is simply because people back then recycled used cards to make business

cards. Tarot designs were originally hand-painted, but they were later produced in greater quantities using different techniques according to the times. Each new technique brought its own limitations as far as the richness of features and the number of colors used. Thus, the stencil coloration technique did not allow great precision, and above all, it imposed the use of a relatively limited number of colors. A deck that was made for a king was far richer in colors than one made for the public. The number of colors was also reduced when industrial printing machines appeared in the 19th century. The fact that many copies of the Tarot of Marseilles were printed by different printers at different times with such similarity proves the existence of a single common original pattern. With different printers, features and colors were reproduced with more or less fidelity. Printers who were not initiated at all to symbolism oversimplified the original pattern. Those who copied them added errors to errors. When studying Tarots that are still extant, it becomes clear that some of them are but copies of a more ancient Tarot. One can thus find obvious errors copied from one Tarot to a more recent one, proving that the latter is only a weakened clone of the former. It is therefore important not to imbue it with an esoteric value it does not have. Inversely, some Tarots show features which are absolutely identical and superimposable, and yet each one has authentic esoteric symbols in their proper place which do not appear in others. In this case, they cannot be clones of each other: one can infer on the contrary that these similar Tarots were copied from a now missing, more ancient Tarot. It is this original Tarot that we wished to rebuild and restore to lovers of the Tarot. Until now, the deck which came closest to this ideal was the Tarot of Paul Marteau. However, feature-wise, it is the exact copy of the Tarot of Besançon issued in the late 19th century, which in turn reproduced another Tarot of Besançon issued by Lequart and signed "Arnoult 1748", as computer superimposition shows. While the colors used in successive editions of Nicolas Conver's Tarot match quite closely the colors of the Tradition, one 1880 edition of Nicolas Conver's 1760 Tarot used colors that had nothing to do with said Tradition. Now those are the colors of that edition which Paul Marteau used. Perhaps those colors were

recommended to the Conver factory (now the Camoin factory) by someone who was more inclined toward psychology than toward symbolism. They are not the ones that were chosen by Initiates who originally transmitted the Tarot of Marseilles, and therefore interfere with the transmission of that knowledge. While the interpretation of those colors may present some interest for a beginner or a psychologist, it will cause conflicts in the disciple's mind and will finally be rejected by the Initiate. For these reasons I had to face the obvious and make the huge effort of giving up over forty years of memorizing the Tarot of Paul Marteau and accept, albeit painfully, the Traditional Truth. New computer graphics and printing techniques have enabled us to give the features and colors of the Tarot of Marseilles a precision never attained before.


Then 40 cards, the MINOR ARCANA, or Pips, divided into four suits: three suits numbered in roman numerals I through X, and one without numbers. The first three suits are WANDS, SWORDS and CUPS. The fourth is PENTACLES. And one last series of 16 cards called Court Cards (HONNEURS or FIGURES). A correct study of Tarot places the Court Cards in the order: - PAGES - QUEENS - KINGS - KNIGHTS. Thus we have 78 cards, neither major nor minor, but all essential. In the RESTORED TAROT OF MARSEILLES, one finds ten colors, each one bearing multiple meanings (to which one must add tiny spots of purple): - BLACK - RED - LIGHT GREEN - DARK GREEN - FLESH - LIGHT BLUE - DARK BLUE - LIGHT YELLOW - DARK YELLOW - WHITE Four of these colors are not divided into "light" or "dark". These are White, Black and Red, the three colors of the Alchemical Work, and the color Flesh, realm of the human being where the alchemical mutation operates... The ARCANA, besides their individual possibilities, are linked to each other and make up couples, triads and then sentences, poems and entire discourses. We are facing an optical alphabet which transmits knowledge, not through sounds but through designs, shapes and colors, which does not preclude the possibility of giving each ARCANUM a musical value.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------WHO CREATED THE TAROT OF MARSEILLES? by Alexandro JODOROWSKY -----------------------------------------------------------------------The TAROT OF MARSEILLES is a message sent through time, free of all restrictions, in order to become the key to the Unique Arcanum (Arcanum in Latin mystery, secret.) which is no other than CONSCIOUSNESS. Nowadays, directly or indirectly, millions of people have had contact with Tarot. Tarot will soon become an indispensable ally of medicine and psychoanalysis. It will influence HUMAN ART which will become SACRED ART. It will develop collective intuition, enabling it to use its parapsychological potential. The TAROT OF MARSEILLES, with no known authors or geographical, historical or ideological roots, is placed in the INFINITE FREEDOM of Awareness and it rejects the religions and temples which might appear in its name. It is but a humble and grand instrument in the service of the Cosmos. The venerable entity allows each one of us to become creators of the Tarot. It gives us a structure which we must inhabit and therefore enables us to collaborate with this Great Work.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------POSSIBLE MEANINGS PROPOSED BY VARIOUS SEARCHERS by Alexandro JODOROWSKY -----------------------------------------------------------------------LE MAT / THE FOOL Original energy. The indefinite. Freedom. Folly. Chaos. Man moving toward his own evolution. Nomad. Anarchy. Desire. Infinite dimension. Delirium. Aspiring to light and eternal life. Seeking the truth. Advancing toward developing all human possibilities. Prophet. Bears the essential. Visionary. I - LE BATELEUR / THE MAGICIAN A beginning. Everything is possible. Taking one's place. Man on the rise. Initiate. Work. Trickery. The art of convincing. Spontaneity. Egotism. Beginning the search for lost wisdom. Artist. Game. A will to create. II- LA PAPESSE / THE HIGH PRIESTESS Divine Mother. Accumulation. Virgin. Occult church. Domineering mother. Frigid woman. A secret known to the one who can decipher it. Coldness. Strict upbringing. Initiator. Sacred books. Solitude. Silence. Meditation. Rigor. Inhibition. Celibacy. Incubating, a work. III- L'IMPERATRICE / THE EMPRESS Creative impulse. Investing oneself. Fertility. Beautiful woman. Incarnated one. Initiative. Charm. A female lover. Productive activities. A hand that takes. Famed or high-ranking woman. Coquetry. Business woman. IIII - L'EMPEREUR / THE EMPEROR Stability. Domineering father. Power. Basis for all constructions. Material energy. Support. Influential man. Power over the material world. Spouse. Sexual potency. Head of the family. Patriarchy. Soothing force.

V-LE PAPE / THE POPE Mediator. Ideal. Priesthood. Inspired authority. Guide. Spiritual power. Bridge toward the sacred. Faith. Sanctity. Alliance. Ritual. Helping humankind. Knowledge. Dogmas. Great initiate. Wedding. Reuniting. Idealized father. Revealed secret. Blessing. VI- L'AMOUREUX / THE LOVER Union. The call of love. Joy. The pleasure of doing something one likes. Enthusiasm. Beauty. Mother preventing her son's union with the spouse. Oedipus. Incest. Choice. Temptation. Conflict in love. Uncertainty. Harmony. VII- LE CHARIOT / THE CHARIOT Action in the world. Travel. Motion of an organized work. Triumph. Lover. Awareness of the Cosmos. Talent. Conquest. Successful artist. Transmitting a work. VIII- LA JUSTICE / JUSTICE Universal equilibrium. Weighing and cutting. Rigor. Castrating mother. Responsibility within liberty. Reason and will. Collaborating in the divine work. Inflexibility. Lawsuit. Referee. Cosmic laws. Good or bad actions which follow us throughout our successive existences. Perfection. Lucidity. Giving oneself what one deserves. VIIII - L'HERMITE / THE HERMIT Moving onward without knowing where to. Crisis. Doubting and transcending doubt. Prudence. Wisdom. Inner life. Initiate operating the inner work. Obscure night of the soul. Solitude. Absent father. Alcoholism. Shedding light on the past. Therapist. Pilgrimage. Knowledge of the occult. Time. Chastity. Secret. Self-study. X - LA ROUE DE FORTUNE / THE WHEEL OF FORTUNE End of a cycle. Universal wheel of the laws of nature set in motion by Providence. Need for outside help. Cycle of deaths and rebirth. Circulation. Alternation. Immobility awaiting the force which will set it in motion. Circumstances. Incarnating the spirit and spiritualizing matter.

XI- LA FORCE / STRENGTH Beginning on a new plane. Beginning of a new cycle. Mind controlling desire. Harmony between the intellect and sexuality. Conquest through seduction. Self-discipline Charisma. Conscience. Handling aggressive situations gently. Masturbation. Sexual inhibition. Moral fortitude. Action with detachment. Frigid woman who is afraid of orgasm. Heroism. Self-knowledge. XII- LE PENDU / THE HANGED MAN Stopping. Meditation. Fetus. Gestation. Giving oneself. Ordeal. Progress imposed by pain. Achieving mental vacuity. Waiting in self- denial. Selfpunishment. Believing one is attached. Unrequited love. Inner strength received through prayer. Self-improvement. XIII- ARCANE XIII / ARCANUM XIII In-depth transformation. Revolution. Elimination of that which impedes progress. End of an illusion. Transmutation. Cataclysm. Death. Loss. Harvest. Attack. Anger. Family hatred. End of something. Serious disease. Sadism. Destruction. The work of the subconscious. Clearing the ground. Radical changes. Spoliation. XIIII - TEMPERANCE / TEMPERANCE Recovery. Guardian angel. Moderation. Equilibrium. Reciprocity. Internal circulation. Harmony. Communication. Soul purification. Messenger of grace. Elixir vitae. Divine aid. Flow of the past into the present toward the future. Medicine. The double flow of vital forces. Serenity of mind. Even-temper. Mellowing down. Giving and receiving. XV - LE DIABLE / THE DEVIL Animal nature. Sexual forces. Great creativity. Attachment. Work on matter. Passion. The subconscious. False guru. Temptation. Fermentation. Egocentric. Domination. Money. Bestiality. Pride. Fascination. Orgy. Sadomasochism. Mockery. Trap. Dark side. Perversions. Reservoir of vitality.

XVI- LA MAISON-DIEU / THE TOWER What was hidden comes out in the open. Joy. Dancing around the temple. Divine force. Lightning. Phallus. Ruin. Catastrophe. Breaking limits. Accident. Divorce. Explosion. Collapse. Liberation. Ejaculation. Streak of genius. Breaking up. Letting sexual energy circulate. Enlightenment. XVII- L'ETOILE / THE STAR Giving oneself to the world. Psychic reception. Providential help. Universal love. Wasting energy on the past. Nostalgia. Grace. Muse. Astrological influence. Aquarius. Altruistic action. Womanhood. Sanctifying a place. Peace. Harmony. Music. Perfume. Paradise. XVIII- LA LUNE / THE MOON Maternal archetype. Cosmic Mother. Womanhood. Deep intuition. Dream. The subconscious. Illusions. Solitude. Night. Sadness. Stagnation. Gestation. Children calling for their mother's love. Desire to return to the womb. Madness. Superstition. Depression. Secret. Concealment. That which is hidden. XVIIII - LE SOLEIL / THE SUN Paternal archetype. Cosmic Father. Radiance. Brotherly love. Building a common work. Success. Happiness. Light. Starting couple. The one helps the other to cross. A rich harvest. Glory. Achieved awareness. Father who loves his children. Solidarity. XX - LE JUGEMENT / JUDGMENT Irresistible desire. Call from the Divine and the spiritual. Resurrection. Announcement. Message. Revival. Rising to a superior awareness. Integrating parental archetypes. Awakening. Revelation. Faith. Ardor. Worship. Virtue. Parents' blessing. Grace. Accomplished initiating cycle. Consecration. Music.

XXI- LE MONDE / THE WORLD Accomplishment in the world. Achievement. The four energy and the fifth essence. Cosmic center. Fame. Universal soul. Travels. Woman's sex. Achieving unity. Spiritual androgyny. Confinement. An obstacle one must rise above. Difficult Birth. Ideal woman. Happy marriage. Womb. Perfect world. Being born to the world. Creative dancing. Opening. Cosmic egg. -----------------------------------------------------------------------READING THE TAROT (2) by Alexandro JODOROWSKY -----------------------------------------------------------------------There are four "classic" spreads which the student must learn and know, much like a student painter in an Academy of Fine Arts. * The reduced spread which is cross-shaped * The medium spread, in a half-circle * The complete spread, in a circle * The total spread, set in cycles. IN THE REDUCED SPREAD, only the 22 Major Arcana are used. Four cards are picked after shuffling. The first one is set on the left and represents the question which involves the postulant. The second one, placed opposite the first, shows what is around the postulant, the general ambiance regarding him. The third one placed on the top indicates the actions exerted by superior forces in order to conciliate the first two cards. The fourth card placed at the bottom gives the result. The spread is then synthesized by adding the numbers written on the four cards, and the card with the matching number is placed in the middle. If that number exceeds 22 (22 here representing Le Mat, The Fool), it is reduced by adding both digits in order to find a corresponding card. For example if the sum is 46, one adds 4+6=10, and places The Wheel of Fortune at the center of the spread. If the sum of both digits corresponds to a card already in the spread, one reduces the sum of the other three cards, the fourth one being excluded since it matched the former reduced

number. IN THE HALF-SPREAD, the postulant picks 12 cards which he places in a half-circle, and which will be interpreted from left to right. If one needs to further clarify the meaning of these first 12 cards, the postulant picks 12 more cards which serve as a medium, and are also placed left to right. Each card completes the meaning of the card it supports. THE COMPLETE SPREAD uses the laws of the horoscope, and is placed on a full circle divided into 12 sections. The first one, on the left, indicates the postulant's physical and psychological state; the second one, below the first, possessions; the third, family; the fourth, at the bottom, shows heredity and landed properties; the fifth, going back up, children, affections; the sixth, servants, diseases; the seventh, opposite the first, shows spouse, companions; the eighth, death, inheritance; the ninth, religion; the tenth, at the top, the social situation; the eleventh, going back down, friends, supporters; the twelfth, trials. The first card goes into section 1, the second into section 2, and so forth as long as they are minor arcana but when a major arcanum turns up, the postulant keeps picking cards until a minor arcanum is found, in other words the minors are always alone in a section, whereas the majors can accumulate if they come out in a row. The meaning of each section is compared with that of the card or cards which are in it, these cards being interpreted in the order they came in. The sections with major arcana show characteristic events. Major arcana separated by 1 or 3 sections are favorably aspected, and unfavorably if they are separated by 2 or 5 sections. THE TOTAL SPREAD : The first 12 cards are placed in the 12 sections without stopping at majors, from left to right from the first section. Then one starts again until the entire deck is used, so that you get six cycles of 12 cards and a residue of 6 cards which are placed on every other section beginning with section 1. Therefore the first section contain 7 cards, the second 6, the third 7 and so forth. The cards in each section are interpreted from the first one picked to the last, the first one being the most important one. Translated from the French by Marc Dettloff.

A MAJORS ONLY SPREAD BY JODOROWSKY http://tarothealingbylisa.blogspot.com/2009/09/majors-only-spread-by-jodorowskythank.html

I stumbled upon this Majors only spread by Jodorowsky in Mary K. Greer's Tarot Blog this morning.

I was drawn to try this spread for a number of reasons. The healing power of the Major Arcana is pretty much limitless as it deals with all the major spiritual laws and lessons we go through on our life's journey. In a reading, the Major Arcana cards put the spotlight on what your Higher Self is teaching you through your life circumstances. A reading with only Major Arcana cards becomes a blueprint for the spiritual learning you are doing at the moment, and is thus invaluable as a road map for how to stay aligned with Higher Will on the journey. I was also drawn to try this spread since I have had an interest in numerology for nearly 30 years. In my experience the numbers never lie. I moved into a number 18 flat in November last year, and I knew I was in for some lessons about illusion, intuition and delusion.... The spread uses 3 cards (the number of the trinity) as the foundation and then builds up to a total of 7 cards (the number of faith) by reducing the sum total of first all three cards and then three different combinations of two out of the three cards in the original spread. The first three cards are placed in a row from right to left (A,B,C). You then add the three cards together and reduce to a number equal to or smaller than 22. This card goes at the bottom of the spread (see image above) and reveals the foundation (subconscious influence/driving force) of the issue dealt with by the first three cards. Apparently, Jodorowsky does not bother interpreting the first three cards but focuses the reading on the resulting additional four cards.

The next card, which represents external influences/circumstances is deduced by adding cards A + C, goes right at the top of the spread. Maternal/receptive aspects goes to the left below the top card and is arrived at by adding A+B. Paternal/active aspects goes to the right below the top card and is the Major Arcana that B+C points at. In the reading I did for myself using the DruidCraft Tarot majors, I could see with great clarity the nature of this leg of the healing journey for myself. The central three cards speak of my Higher Self (the Chariot) relentlessly moving me towards circumstances that would seem fated enough (the Wheel) to force change (the Tower) and surrender to Higher Will. The underlying motivation, the Devil, represents my desire to face my shadow in order to free myself from limiting beliefs. The external influences represented by Temperance (the Fferyllt in the DruidCraft Tarot) show that I am aware and actively involved in the healing journey, making sure that my environment reflects my desire for healing and alignent with Source. I have recently decided to become an EFT practitioner. The Star card in the receptive position fills me with joy. It shows that I am open and receptive to divine guidance through meditation.

Strength in the active position represents my determination to let God be my strength. The ego is being de-throned. I'm happy with just the 7 cards, and will not be adding an extra card as suggested by Mary K. Greer, but feel free to experiment and see what works for you. The 8th card is arrived at by adding the numbers of all 7 cards together and then reducing to a number less than or equal to 22. This final 8th card could show long term results or deeper psychological aspects, according to MKG.

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