78 Notes to Self: A Tarot Journal

We are all wanderers on this earth. Our hearts are full of wonder, and our souls are deep with dreams.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The Tarot Choir
I just don't get it.  Furthermore, I think the reason I don't get it is because I have no desire to get it.  Kabbalah and Tarot.  When I've read about the connections, the overlay of Tarot on to the Tree of Life, what I comprehend is: "Ten spheres, sefirot, 22 paths, Kingdom,  blah, blah, blah, Wisdom, blah, blah, blah, tifereth, Malkuth, blah, blah, blah..."  and "isn't that amazing, the insights we get from the Kabbalah and how it applies to tarot?"  Blank stare.  Blink.  I really hate it when I feel this way about what is perceived to be a pretty important aspect to a subject I love.  I love Tarot and Tarot history and divination and symbolism, and yet when it comes to the merging of Tarot and Kabbalah, I am at a loss.  Same thing happens, to a lesser degree, when I read about Astrology and Tarot.  I really want to read Corrine Kenner's Tarot & Astrology book because I think it will help clear up my fog-brain on this system.

And then there are the other Tarot practitioners who combine other systems with Tarot that are really cool and fascinating, but somehow the fascination doesn't grip me at all.  Sometimes I wonder if I'm a lame Tarot reader because I'm not really all that interested in researching all these nifty side roads and offshoots.  I probably shouldn't even call them side roads because the development of Tarot as a modern tool of divination has its roots in the esoteric systems of those who ascribed Kabbalistic associations and astrological associations to the cards.   This is why I feel a bit conflicted about my internal resistance to these systems.  I feel as if I may be missing out on some important stuff.  

Then again, maybe not. A wise woman once said to me, "All God's chillun got a place in the choir."  So, since we all have a voice to share in the chorus that is Tarot, maybe it's not a big deal that I don't combine these other systems with Tarot.  Maybe that is another person's place in the choir.  I can't imagine trying to be a one-woman band.  I just don't multi-task that well.  I'm very glad there are many different approaches to Tarot because without them, the song just couldn't be sung as well.  I'm thankful for innovators, for those who find new ways to combine the systems, people like Scott Grossberg who developed The Vitruvian Square which is a system unto itself but which can also be overlayed or merged with just about any other divination system.  Mary Greer is forever highlighting new and culturally interesting tarot relevant things on her blog.  Marcus Katz and Tali Goodwin of Tarot Professionals have been instrumental in bringing historical tarot discoveries to light, most recently Abiding in the Sanctuary, a collection of 23 tarot images by AE Waite and artist JB Trinick that have not been seen publicly in a hundred years.  Then we have Donnaleigh De la Rose, the radio personality Tarot's primo podcast, Beyond Worlds.  As a sometimes co-host, I am amazed at Donnaleigh's ability to pull off such a seamless, welcoming, informational, educational and FUN radio show almost every week of the year.  She's so good you can't even tell how much work she puts into it, but trust me, there is a great deal of preparation and management that goes on behind the scenes and then during the show, she's busy multi-tasking, sending links to chat room attendees and guests, keeping the flow of conversation going, etc.  The really cool part about all of these players is they each bring something unique to the Tarot table.  AND, no one stands alone.  Scott Grossberg, for example, consulted with and features Enrique Enriquez in The Vitruvian Square.  Enrique does incredible things with language and symbolism and the Marseilles Tarot and is even the subject of a documentary.  Mary Greer wrote the preface for Abiding in the Sanctuary. Those are just a few examples of the collaborations that go on every day in the Tarot community.  

Just like a choir, we all have a voice that adds to the song.  And whether we stand alone and sing solo or choose to harmonize with other voices, it all becomes a symphony of brilliance and beauty.  Every one of us has something to add and we don't have to be all the voices, just one.  I don't need to master Kabbalah, astrology, numerology, or anything else to be a strong Tarot reader.  However, if I ever want to learn, I know exactly where to find the information.  In the Tarot Choir.