New Book: The Tarot: History, Iconography, Esotericism

The Tarot: History, Iconography, Esotericism
ISBN: 978-1-7390445-5-8
228 pag.
8 x 0.52 x 10 inches

El Tarot: Historia, Iconografía, Esoterismo
232 pag.
8 x 0.52 x 10 inches

This book is a translation of Le Tarot: Histoire, Iconographie, Esotérisme, from Gérard Van Rijnberk, published in 1947.


Available at different Amazon stores in English and Spanish editions.

This book is, in its first part, an analysis of the history of playing cards and Tarot cards in Europe; its second part analyzes the designs of Tarot cards, comparing them with elements of the literature and art of the time, to explore where these images come from; its third part analyzes the esoteric aspect of the Tarot, relating it to different bodies of knowledge, such as Kabbalah, Astrology, Alchemy, Magic, Freemasonry and Christianity, as well as to different alphabets, such as Egyptian hieroglyphics, runes and Hebrew letters.
That is to say that, unlike most of the works that deal with the Tarot, the author of this book studies it on multiple levels, which allows him to offer the reader a more realistic and complete vision of the amazing system of knowledge that is the Tarot, than many other books offer.
Gradually an extensive literature was formed about the Tarot, with the aim of explaining its supposed esoteric meaning and the mysteries contained in its curious images. On the other hand, much less attention has been paid among occultists to exoteric questions, history and criticism. Where did these cards really come from? What was their real age? What was the original and primitive appearance of their images? What modifications did their images undergo over the centuries? Occultists have not been interested in any of these questions, which they have dealt with little or not at all. Research on these topics has been carried out by scholars belonging to many other diverse fields of study, especially historians of the graphic arts, librarians or archivists. For their part, these scholars have generally ignored or completely disregarded the interpretative work of occultists, just as the latter have systematically disdained the work of the others.
The aim of the present study tends to reconcile these two tendencies. On the one hand, to take advantage of the effort of historians to fix some points in the exoteric history of the Tarot deck, to reduce it to its real proportions and to bring it to its own limits. On the other hand, to summarize the vast work, in scope and depth, of the occultists.
To expound in a doctrinal and complete manner the esotericism of the Tarot would be tantamount to fully expounding the esoteric Science in all its innumerable ramifications and applications. The Tarot Arcana are like small magic mirrors where each one sees what he is given to see or glimpse, about the secrets of macro and micro-cosmic Life. Although this work does not pretend to reveal all the secrets of the Tarot, it will allow the serious reader a deeper understanding of what it is and what can be achieved with the Tarot.