I’ve been doing a lot of reading this week, but I haven’t been tarot-ing much at all. It’s been a week of books, not cards, in a manner of speaking. Just to make this official, and fitting of a blog that’s mostly about Tarot & Erisian Dervishes of Magick & Madness… I’ll ask the cards what they think of all this. (Using the Illuminated… I’m in the mood for pretty sparkles!)
Hallo Le Tarot… How do you feel about me completely ignoring you this week, and choosing books over cards?
8 of Swords >> 4 of Pents >> 3 of Pents >> 7 of Wands
Oh. Well… Tarot is a bit confused that I’d be so stingy with my time this week, since we’ve been working so well together and have a lot more to do. That being said… I just did a little reading, and I wasn’t intending to, so Tarot has won this round over literary fiction. Huzzzah, Tarot! Huzzah!
Yep. Tarot-ing is a verb which simply means… to tarot... I usually tarot like a Pharaoh, B! Not so much this week, but it doesn’t mean that I haven’t been thinking about it. Some weeks I tend to read less than others, for whatever reason. This week I blame it on the acquisition of my fancy-schmancy new toy. When my husband and I buy Christmas gifts for each other, if we buy gifts (our big demanding families seem to sap all of our mutual gifting funds this time of year), we usually give them to each other early. Our anniversary is the day after Christmas, so it’s a nice way to break things up. Mine happened to arrive early this week. Yay! I got a Kindle! It’s the perfect thing for me… Tons of books, with cheap, fast, instant gratification! I read voraciously, but hate lugging books around. I hate nosy people in the breakroom at work asking me what I’m reading, and then getting all weird on me when I tell them.
Nosy Rosie: “Whatcha’ reading?”
Eris: “A translation of the Tibetan Book of the Dead.”
Nosy Rosie: “!?!?”
Eris: “I told you… I read a lot of non-fiction. History. Mythology. Anthropology. Philosophy. Psychology. “
Nosy Rosie: “Oh. You should read the DaVinci Code. It’s really good.”
I can read Crowley while waiting at the DMV, and no one will ever suspect to question my seeming appearance of conformity! I can do it, but that doesn’t mean I want to. Crowley requires too much concentration for me. I did have another motivation for getting a Kindle as well… I like the idea of having a nice, portable, handy little library of tarot resources to keep with me whenever I choose. The Kindle fits into most of my handbags, and there seemed to be plenty of decent tarot books available, so I was sold! Sold, I tells you!
I like using it. It works well. It’s good. Blah. Blah. Blah. Get on with the tarot-related point, Madame Eris.
If I were going to have a quick reference, my first choices would be Power Tarot by Phyllis Vega or Learning the Tarot by Joan Bunning. Of course, neither were available. Of course! Grrrrr! I thought it would be cool if 78 Degrees of Wisdom were on there. It’s such a lovely, lovely study of the tarot, and I would really like to re-read it and make some good notes. The Kindle has some pretty cool functions to make annotating easy. No dice! Bah! Bah! I thought it would be good to have something that delved into the history and symbolism a bit deeper. I’ve been wanting to get Origins of the Tarot by Dai Leon, but of course no such luck.
The good news? Most of Mary K. Greer’s books are on there, except for Tarot for Yourself. I’ll definitely be adding on a few that I haven’t read. I added 21 Ways to Read a Tarot Card, since I managed to lose my copy before I got up to number 3. I’ve heard really good things about Robert Place’s book on tarot, especially in regards to the history. It’s pretty good so far. I’d also heard good things about some of the techniques in Janet Boyer’s Back in Time Tarot. I haven’t read it yet, but I’ve heard that the process outlined in the book is really different and innovative approach to studying tarot. Count me in! Whenever I get to it…
In my search for a good quick reference to keep on hand, I checked out The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Tarot by Arlene Tognetti and Tarot Plain & Simple by Anthony Louis. The former annoyed me… It’s irritating. I don’t know why. It just is. Like Rachel Ray. She tops the list of Things That Make Me Stabby for No Apparent Reason. The latter was exactly what I was looking for. It’s got very clear and concise lists of key words, correspondences, and meanings. It’s a decent little book, and I would definitely recommend it to someone as a book to get started. Every good tarotista needs a good Tarot 101 book to keep around. Sure, I do think that intuitive interpretations are at the heart of tarot, but I can’t shake my convictions that it’s helpful to have a little bit of a foundation. It’s a jumping off point.
I’m not being arrogant or anything but… I am delighted to say that I have moved past Tarot 101 books! I might need a quick glance for some of the minors, but as a whole I’m no longer reliant on them. In browsing through both books, I realized that I’ve read all of it before. I’m not going to learn anything new from Tarot For Illiterate Mouth Breathing Dullards, except how to use drool for divination purposes.
There is also a Kindle version of the book to accompany Kat Black’s Touchstone Tarot. I’m not really feeling that particular deck, with the exception of the Happy Squirrel card. Still, it’s nice to see how a different digital format can be used for Fun with Tarot. I love seeing what one can do with the tarot in different formats, using different devices. Just wait until I get my hands on you, iPhone with iTarot app! And the tarot playlist on my iPod… Sigh… I need to get through the minors. I’ve got songs for the majors, but the minors keep stumping me.
I’d better shuffle off…I need to read. Books. Let’s tarot like a pharaoh, yo!