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A practical guide to Qabalistic symbolism [Unknown Binding]

Gareth Knight
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

1965
In this groundbreaking book, Knight shows how the Qabalah and its basic diagram, the Tree of Life, is a system of relationships among mystical symbols that can be used to gain access to the hidden reaches of the mind. He also demonstrates how the Qabalah is applicable to all mystical traditions and religious beliefs, including Christian mysticism, Greek, Egyptian and Celtic mythologies, and even Native American beliefs. It is indeed symbolic of our universal search for the Divine. Included here are two books in one. The first compares the Western Mystery Tradition with the Eastern system of yoga, analyzes the Tree of Life in full detail, and describes the practical application and theories of Qabalistic symbolism. The second gives the most comprehensive analysis ever published of the twenty-two "Paths of Concealed Glory" that join the Spheres of the Tree of Life taking into account the Hebrew alphabet, astrological signs, and tarot trumps. A large section explores the history of tarot design and the varying systems of correspondence with the Tree of Life.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


Product details

  • Unknown Binding: 249 pages
  • Publisher: Helios Book Service (1965)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0000CMYI8
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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First Sentence
1. If we would know the inner nature of man by his outer nature; if we would understand his inner heaven by his outward aspect; if we would know the inner nature of trees, herbs, roots, stones by their outward aspect, we must pursue our exploration of nature on the foundation of the Qabalah. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Masterful piece of work 21 July 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A masterful piece if work and classic reference. The only reason for not 5 starring is the poor quality of reproduction - the print. otherwise, for content, it is 5 start +.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Symbolism 31 Dec 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
To be recommended, there is a great deal of information available even for those who do not appreciate religious literature.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
Of the books I have read on the subject this is the one I keep going back to. The book strikes a perfect balance by being neither a casual and superficial read nor dense and obscure. It makes an excellent reference text and is based on the glyph of the Tree of Life. It provides a wealth of associated images, symbols, meanings, myths, etc that assists one in getting a sense of the nature of the paths/spheres. I definately recommend it to anyone who has done some basic reading on the Qabala and wants to make a more detailed study of it.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent ! A must buy 14 Feb 2008
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Anyone interested in the Qaballah from the standpoint of the Western Mystery Tradition should own this book.

The first volume provides the reader with a complete view of the sephirah of the tree of life which actually enhances any knowledge you may already have found in Dion Fortune's work. Gareth Knight has provided his own perspective which serves to deepen the reader's understanding of the qaballah (even if you've read books on this subject before).

The second volume's summary of the paths is unsurpassed, in my opinion.

This is readable, detailed and an essential to a hermetic student's library.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars  12 reviews
43 of 46 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A first rate presentation with a few blemishes 25 Aug 1998
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Gareth Knight has put together perhaps the most complete assessment of Qabalistic symbology yet published in one book, both for the Tree of Life and the Tarot. As such, it's value to beginning students of Qabalah cannot be overstated. Be this as it may, Knight sometimes uses the book as a soapbox for trumpeting his particular Christian/Scientology brand of Qabalistic dogma, which may leave many libertines out in the cold. He also mistakenly considers Gematria unnecessary to the understanding Qabalistic symbology (!) and tends to beat up Aleister Crowley needlessly while embracing the Master's exchange of the Tarot cards The Emperor and The Star in accordance with Liber AL vel Legis (an allusion to L. Ron Hubbard's Thelemic roots, methinks). However, in spite of these drawbacks, Knight presents the Qabalah lucidly and with great erudition, in a language which is suprisingly accessible to all newcomers. He even dares to show how the Christian Mysteries are relevant to Qabalistic philosophy, often considered taboo in esoteric circles. One of the best features of the book is Knight's thorough comparative analysis of numerous Tarot symbologies, including those of A. E. Waite, Aleister Crowley, and Paul Foster Case. This is definitely an important work which belongs on every Qabalist's bookshelf.
32 of 35 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Deeper than McSpirituality. 21 April 1998
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Looking at the physical object that is this book, and comparing it to 99% of other 'occult' books on the typical mass-market shelf, one gets the sense that the Practical Guide is a little different. Knight has written an intense examination of the qabalistic tree of life. Unlike many of the Do-it-yourselfer books on occultism out nowadays, Knight focuses on esoteric *meanings* of the symbolism, rather than spell formulae and such. Therefore, the Practical Guide has a refreshing quality of weightiness and depth lacking in other works.
On the other hand, Knight himself attacks 'deviant' behaviours such as homosexuality in a prejudiced and bigoted manner. Some of his other comments could also be construed as racist. Furthermore, his discussions of the qabalistic spheres and paths often lapse into abstruse ramblings which are difficult to make heads or tails of. Refreshing in its depth, thankfully not superficial, but offensive and sometimes hard to follow. Worthwhile read for anyone interested in qabala.
And the cover crushes anything published by Lewellyn like a grape.
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended for serious students of the Qabalah 11 April 2002
By Midwest Book Review - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
A Practical Guide To Qabalistic Symbolism by author and modern occultist Gareth Knight is a comprehensive reference, encompassing Volume 1: On the Spheres of the Tree of Life and Volume 2: On the Paths and the Tarot, showcasing the power of Magick and the applications of Qabalah. Diagrams, tables, black-and-white illustrations and extensively annotated explanations help lead readers through the fascinating, sometimes conflicting and hidden meanings of the skill, art, and practice of Qabalah in this most thorough guide. Highly recommended for serious students of the Qabalah, magick, and metaphysics.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars (One of)The Bible(s)of the Magical Qabala Tradition 4 Aug 2003
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Even though the word PRACTICAL is part of the title, this book is still very difficult reading for the uninitiated. In my case, a teacher helped open me up to the delights of this book, revealing a powerful world waiting to be explored. I wouldn't recommend this book to beginners, but I suspect this tome would soon be in their libraries once they establish a basic foundation within themselves.
17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent 8 May 2003
By V. Nocito - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This is the best book on Qabalah I've yet read!! Even though it was written over thirty years ago, it seems SO much more modern and clear, by comparison to other books on the subject. Unfortunately most of the other books on Esoteric Qabalah that I've read were written prior to 1950 and often come across as quite cryptic. This is the first book I've found that does away with the "cloak and dagger" secrecy which prevented most prior writers on the topic from disclosing anything resembling a straightforward explanation.
Also, I was pleased to see that Mr. Knight apologized in his 2001 Forward to the book, for his past views on homosexuality and Scientology.
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