Portable Magic: Tarot Is the Only Tool You Need

Overview

Say goodbye to ceremonial robes, incense, candles, and oils. Donald Tyson presents a new, easy way to perform ritual magic with only one tool: tarot. From manipulating elemental forces of nature to making potent charms, all ceremonial rituals can be performed with a standard 78-card deck.

Tyson's efficient system of tarot magic is based on the Golden Dawn tradition, which corresponds with tarot imagery. He teaches how to work magic on the ...
See more details below
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (14) from $6.99   
  • New (7) from $9.34   
  • Used (7) from $6.99   
Sending request ...

Overview

Say goodbye to ceremonial robes, incense, candles, and oils. Donald Tyson presents a new, easy way to perform ritual magic with only one tool: tarot. From manipulating elemental forces of nature to making potent charms, all ceremonial rituals can be performed with a standard 78-card deck.

Tyson's efficient system of tarot magic is based on the Golden Dawn tradition, which corresponds with tarot imagery. He teaches how to work magic on the astral level by projecting one's awareness into the ritual tarot layout. Learn how to set up an astral temple, build an altar, cast a magic circle, and create a triangle through which to actualize your purpose. This innovative guide to tarot magic also includes rituals related to unions, business, banishing, and evoking elementals.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780738709802
  • Publisher: Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.
  • Publication date: 10/1/2006
  • Pages: 240
  • Sales rank: 1,055,799
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Donald Tyson (Nova Scotia, Canada) is an occult scholar and the author of the popular, critically acclaimed Necronomicon series. He has written more than a dozen books on Western esoteric traditions. Visit him online at DonaldTyson.com.

Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt

1
What Is Tarot Magic?

When you think of the Tarot, you probably think of fortune telling.
This is not surprising since divination has been the main function of Tarot cards for more than two hundred years. Only in the late eighteenth century did the symbolism on the cards acquire a higher spiritual meaning and come to be regarded as an important part of the Western esoteric tradition. In spite of its elevation from the mundane to the mysterious, the primary use for the Tarot remains fortune telling even in the present day. If you examine the books available on the Tarot, most are about divination, with only a handful devoted to the higher meaning of Tarot symbolism.

There is another side to the Tarot that is little known and less understood. The cards can be used as potent instruments of ritual magic. This active function of the Tarot has always existed, but is overlooked or ignored even by many of the greatest modern ceremonial magicians, who regard the Tarot either as an instrument of fortune telling or as a source of symbolism suitable for meditation.
It is much more, as this book will show.

A deck of Tarot cards contains everything you need to work a complete and effective system of ritual magic. With the cards alone,
you can construct an astral temple, build an altar, cast a magic circle,
create a triangle through which to actualize your purpose, manipulate the blind elemental forces of nature, communicate with other people and with spirits, cleanse atmospheres and places of destructive influences, make potent charms, extend aid, and perform works of healing. You can attract wealth, gain love, or achieve victory over your enemies. You can use the Tarot to accomplish any purpose you would seek to achieve through more cumbersome and complex methods of ceremonial magic.

All this with only a deck of Tarot cards. When your work is done,
you simply fold the cards together and put your temple, your altar,
your circle, your triangle, and all your instruments into your pocket, ready for the next time you need them. Tarot magic requires no expensive materials or hand-crafted tools, no incense, no candles, no oils, no arcane languages, no special place in which to work, no costly robes or talismans. Yet it is as effective as the most complex system of magic. Everything is done through the symbolism of the cards, in accord with the esoteric correspondences for the Tarot set forth by the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn.

The standard Golden Dawn correspondences for the Tarot are used throughout this book because they are the most widely understood and accepted. Those familiar with my other writings know that I have made modifications to these correspondences in my personal esoteric system, but in this general text on Tarot magic I
prefer to retain the correspondences with which most readers will be familiar in order to minimize confusion. It is a simple matter to adapt Tarot magic to match any set of occult correspondences.
That is part of its versatility—the cards are moveable and may be set in any desired arrangement. Those interested in my modifications to the Tarot correspondences will find them explained in the appendix.

For many years, I used Tarot magic as part of my own ritual work but did not teach it, or even reduce it to a separate integrated system.
In several of my books, I mention it briefly as a subject worth the consideration of serious readers. For example, in my first book,
The New Magus, published in 1988, I wrote: “The uses of the Tarot in magic are too many to list. Each individual card can be the ob-
ject of fruitful meditations. Cards can be used as talismans, as instruments of ritual workings, as patterns for godforms, and as symbols of power. Above all else, the Tarot is a tool for examining the
Self and its relation to life” (Tyson, 183).

Little did I imagine when I wrote those words that it would be nearly two decades before I would find an opportunity to present the system of Tarot magic that I was then developing and using in my own rituals. Here for the first time, that system is revealed in full detail and in a unified format. Those who master it will find that it frees them from the burden of the complex physical apparatus of traditional ceremonial occultism. I have deliberately restricted the system described here to the cards themselves and only the cards.
The goal is simplicity. The Tarot is a symbolic model of the universe.
Nothing external to it is required.

Traditional magic relies on symbolism also, but in its often complex and ornate ceremonies these symbols are embodied by physical objects and instruments. For example, the magic circle is a protective shield or barrier that is physically marked or laid out on the floor or ground where the ritual is worked. It is well understood by those skilled in ritual that there is another intangible circle that exists on the astral level in the mind of the magician, without which the physical circle would be powerless. The circle held in the imagination is the living soul of the magic circle, and the physical circle laid out or marked on the floor serves as its body.

It is possible to represent the astral realities of ritual magic with symbolic rather than physical instruments. An astral circle can be grounded or given a body by means of a group of Tarot cards just as effectively as it is grounded by a circle drawn in chalk on the floor. In both cases, it is the circle in the imagination of the magician that is the true working circle of the ritual, but in traditional magic it is fixed in the form of a circle drawn, painted, or otherwise marked on the floor, whereas in Tarot magic it is fixed by means of an arrangement of cards that embodies the ritual circle in its set of esoteric correspondences.

Nor is it necessary to lay the cards out in a large circle within which the magician stands and works. This is one possible use for the cards. I have myself employed it in rituals and it can be effective,
but to think only in these terms limits the versatility of Tarot magic. Just as a group of cards can represent the true magic circle on the astral level, so can a single card, carefully chosen, represent and embody the magician. The ring of cards defining the circle need then be only large enough to contain the card of the magician and any other symbolic tools used in the circle. This allows
Tarot magic to be worked on a tabletop or similar convenient surface.
A ritual chamber is unnecessary because the deck of cards becomes the ritual chamber.

It may seem strange that the magician enters one of the cards during rituals of Tarot magic. In the Western esoteric tradition, it is usual for the magician to remain within his or her own body during the greater part of ritual work. This is not equally so in the magic of the East. Tibetan magicians work with esoteric designs laid out upon the floor or the ground that express in symbolic form astral temples, astral landscapes, or entire planes of being without physical reality. They project themselves into these pictures by identifying themselves with a small token, which they place within the design,
usually at its center. As long as the token that embodies their identity remains within the design, they are present and self-aware in the astral reality that the design represents.

The technique of projecting the point of view, or self-awareness,
outside the body requires practice, but such projection is an established part of Western magic as well. It is used for a variety of purposes, such as projecting the self-awareness through an astral doorway during scrying or soul flight, or into a godform when invoking a higher spiritual being. It is a technique every person serious about magic must learn sooner or later, and it is not very difficult. Any beginner can project his or her self-awareness to a limited and partial degree, although full perfection of the technique requires months or years of practice. A virtue of Tarot magic is that it can be worked with success even if the projection of the point of view into a card is less than perfect.

This system does not require the purchase of a special Tarot deck.
Any Tarot of seventy-eight cards will be effective. The occult correspondences of the Golden Dawn upon which the entire system is based are independent of the details of the card images, so the differences between the Rider-Waite deck and the Crowley Thoth deck,
for example, do not determine the success of the magic worked. The magic is not in the cards, which are merely tools used to construct rituals and to represent various instruments and forces. The magic is in the person using them. The cards act to focus and project the power of the mind.

Decks of smaller cards produce a more manageable ritual layout,
and are to be preferred in Tarot magic. In my own work, I use the miniature Rider-Waite deck because it can be laid out on a very limited surface area such as a desktop or end table. The size of the cards has no effect on the potency of the magic.

Whichever Tarot deck you select for your own rituals, you should continue to use it until you become completely familiar with its symbolism. Over time, a deck of Tarot cards used repeatedly for ritual magic will acquire its own energies that make it easier to work rituals with that deck. That is because the deck becomes more real on the astral level within the mind of the magician using the cards. Less effort is needed each time by the magician to create the cards on the astral level, freeing up energies for the actual work of magic.

It is best to keep the deck of cards employed in ritual magic separate and wrapped in a square of linen or some other natural cloth, in order to preserve this useful quality of a sustained astral charge. The cards should not be handled by others, or even shown to them. A ritual is a very private activity, unless it is specifically designed to be worked by a group. The tools of ritual are not for curious eyes—the system presented here is intended for the solitary practitioner. Keep the deck separate and use it only for Tarot magic. If you do divination, it is best to get a second deck of cards for that purpose.

Even those who use the Tarot strictly for telling fortunes and have no interest in practical magic will find the explanations for the Golden Dawn Tarot correspondences and their origins more illuminating than any treatment of this subject that has previously appeared in print. For some reason that is not obvious, unless it is mere ignorance on the part of writers, the origin of the Golden
Dawn correspondences is seldom adequately explained, though this set of correspondences forms the heart of the modern Tarot.
Diviners accept the correspondences without knowing their ultimate source. A full awareness of how the correspondences came to be can enhance the accurate use of the cards for prediction.

This work is solely concerned with practical magic. It is not about using the cards for divination, although this is a fascinating and perfectly valid use for the Tarot. There are thousands of books on fortune telling with the cards, and anyone who seeks to learn to divine will have no trouble finding them. Here, you will discover what is infinitely more rare and precious: a way to use the Tarot ritually to cause active and potent change in the world in conformity with your will. That is the very heart and soul of magic.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Contents

1 What Is Tarot Magic? 1
2 History of the Tarot 7
3 Structure of the Tarot 15
4 Tarot and the Golden Dawn 21
5 Correspondences of the Trumps 29
6 Esoteric Cosmology of the Trumps 37
7 Correspondences of the Suits 45
8 The Court Cards 53
9 The Sixteen Significators 61
10 The Ten Sephiroth 69
11 Symbolic Tools of Tarot Magic 77
12 The Point 85
13 The Ray 93
14 The Circle 99
15 The Triangle 107
16 The Cross 115
17 General Method of Tarot Ritual 121
18 Planetary Modifiers 131
19 Meanings of the Number Cards 139
20 Using Realizers and Modifiers 147
21 Summary of Essentials 153
22 Ritual of Union 157
23 Banishing Ritual 167
24 Business Ritual 173
25 Tarot Card Charms 185
26 Evoking an Elemental 195
Appendix: Modified Tarot Correspondences 207
Glossary 217
Works Cited 223
Index 225

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 7, 2009

    This is a potent book.

    I can easily understand why a new ager would have problems with this book, it is not a "recipe book" where you turn to page 90 where there is a tidy little lay-out to heal your cat. <BR/>Like most of Tyson's books, it make demands of you, like focus, concentration, earnestness. The inherent value of the objective that Tyson has successfully set out to deliver is hugely useful, but there are also many bonuses to be found for the attentive reader in terms of deepening of one's understanding of Kaballah, Tarot etc. <BR/>If you are looking for a quick-fix stay away, but if you are a serious student, I thoroughly recommend this work,

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 13, 2007

    there are better books

    The author of this book claims that 'never before' has this sort of stuff been put together, at least not in book form. Hello! almost twenty years ago Janina Renee had Tarot Spells published by this author's publisher and I must say it is a far more original and user friendly work. Portable Magic seems quite Victorian in its outlook as well. It is based on a lot of trite Golden Dawn requisites and rehashes the GD alumni histories, yawn. I would recommend Janina Renee's Tarot Spells as a much better tarot magic book of instruction and much more original.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)