Sign in to turn on 1-Click ordering.
More Buying Choices
Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Image not available

Tell the Publisher!
Id like to read this book on Kindle

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

The Forest of Souls: A Walk Through the Tarot [Paperback]

Rachel Pollack
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: 12.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
Usually dispatched within 10 to 11 days.
Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

Book Description

1 Oct 2002
"The Forest of Souls" examines the tarot cards and their dreamlike pictures from the standpoint of myth. The cards are brought to life through stories and poems, exercises and meditations, even rituals and invocation. The book draws on ancient practices to use the cards as an opening to wonder and mystery. The focus is on the possible truths the cards reveal, rather than the easy answers of fortune-telling.

Frequently Bought Together

The Forest of Souls: A Walk Through the Tarot + Seventy Eight Degrees of Wisdom
Price For Both: 23.48

One of these items is dispatched sooner than the other.

Buy the selected items together
  • Seventy Eight Degrees of Wisdom 10.49

Product details

  • Paperback: 408 pages
  • Publisher: Llewellyn Publications,U.S. (1 Oct 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1567185339
  • ISBN-13: 978-1567185331
  • Product Dimensions: 22.8 x 16 x 1.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 588,935 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, and more.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
Where it does come from? Read the first page
Explore More
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
Search inside this book:

Sell a Digital Version of This Book in the Kindle Store

If you are a publisher or author and hold the digital rights to a book, you can sell a digital version of it in our Kindle Store. Learn more

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Customer Reviews

4 star
3 star
2 star
1 star
5.0 out of 5 stars
5.0 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
41 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A warm and wonderful book 11 Dec 2002
By A Customer
All of Rachel Pollack's work is special; but this is the most inspiring. Many texts on the Tarot rehash the same information to a pretty rigid format, based on the structure of the tarot deck itself, but this book is different. If you want to read something that reminds you of what drew you to the Tarot in the first place, then this is the book for you. Rachel Pollack leads us on an ever illuminating and ever stimulating path through the history and mythology of the Tarot. She explores ideas from the Occult to the Kabbalah with a deft and lively hand. Perhaps most importantly, through this very personal exploration, she brings emphasis to the notion that it is the timeless archetypal truths which prompted the development of the Tarot, rather than the history itself, which matter and which are the heart of the Tarot. This is a unique book, at once scholarly and enchanting, that will bring much pleasure to many Tarot enthusiasts.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
5.0 out of 5 stars Forest of Souls is brilliant 28 Aug 2013
I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to deepen their understanding of the mechanics of creation while enjoying well-written prose from an extremely erudite poet.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars  14 reviews
39 of 40 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent addition to any Tarot library 9 July 2003
By Psyche - Published on Amazon.com
This is the first book by Rachel Pollack I've read, she's written a few others which have been highly acclaimed - and after reading this excellent book, I can understand why.
Pollack opens with a description of the various histories and mythological guesses at the origins of the Tarot, combining it with its known history, and personal experience. Spirituality, symbols, myths and archetypes are common themes explored in this book as Pollack approaches the decks in a more spiritual rather than divinatory light.
The text is beautifully accompanied by a variety of black and white illustrations of various Tarot decks, many of which I've never seen before. She examines the commonalities found within them, and explains much of the mythology and reasoning behind such images. Pollack relies heavily on the Shining Tribe Tarot she created, obviously as that symbolism resonates best with her understanding.
There are methods of asking questions of the Tarot that she seems to feel others would find heretical. Coming from a chaos magick background myself, I can't quite understand why, though I've found my work enhanced by her suggestions. She expands upon the traditional spreads listed in every other book with spontaneous questions and insights of her own. Previous to reading Forest of Souls, my Tarot readings were much more ridgedly structured. Ms. Pollack has given my practice a much needed breath of fresh air, allowing for much more creativity and spontaneity in my readings.
An excellent book for expanding one's thought on traditional histories and practices of Tarot, highly recommended to anyone with an interest in Tarot.
66 of 73 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lost and Found in The Forest of Souls 22 Oct 2002
By Diane B. Wilkes - Published on Amazon.com
The author begins her book with a "Gallery of Quotations," utilizing diverse sources--a Reconstructionist Jewish prayer book, personal correspondence, T.S. Eliot, and the Bible. Being a font of fabulous quotations, Pollack is also self-referential.
In the ensuing chapters, like the reverently irreverent Tracy Ullman, Pollack takes on such subjects as the Tarot's origins, wisdom questions (as opposed to asking, "Will X marry me," she asks, "What is marriage?"), Jewish and Kabbalistic thoughts as they pertain to the Tarot, and formulating new versions of the Fool's Journey. The author does a reading for God ("God's Reading") and finds Christian symbolism abounding in her own Shining Tribe deck when she performs "A Reading for the Resurrection: Easter 2001."
What do I mean by reverently irreverent? Some might call doing a spread for God irreverent. Yet Pollack's awe is reserved for what is truly profound, and part of that profundity is in pushing the limits of what we have done before or think we know. She pushes those limits not out of irreverence, but reverence for the truly infinite. And for the tarot, in what it can offer us in terms of infinite wisdom
If you have been fortunate enough to attend a workshop with Rachel Pollack, you know that her style is humorous and digressive. She is widely read and thinks and speaks in an unconventional, intellectually searching voice. This voice is manifested in The Forest of Souls, far more than in her previous tarot writings. I could actually hear her in my head, alluding to Professor Irwin Cory and tales of her dog's exploits. The tone of the book has an immediacy and vitality that makes it easy to read, which is an amazing feat, as the concepts and thoughts are both complex and challenging.
They are also unique. I cannot think of another book like this in the tarot oeuvre. It is also demanding, particularly in its structure. While Pollack offers us a panoply of different ways in which we can use the tarot, this is no traditional workbook. She describes what she has done, but she certainly doesn't set up a format that we can follow by rote. She doesn't make it easy. One example is her approach to alternative Major Arcana journeys. I am excited by doing one of my own, but I must admit I would have preferred some step-by-step instructions, even as I feel challenged in a positive way. Pollack's Forest of Souls isn't a stop on the Carnival Tour. This isn't the Easily Digestible Approach to Tarot, but one of visionaries, dreamers, and explorers. Only adult tarot readers need apply.
In high school, I read Elie Wiesel's The Gates of the Forest, a moving novel about the holocaust and Kabbalah. I remember being so engrossed in this book that I was shocked to feel something wet on my shoulder. It was a tear that had fallen without me even being aware that I was crying, so enmeshed was I in that compelling story. The title of that book, so similar to Rachel's, brought that memory back to me. The synchronicity of the subject matter seems to align with the magic of the Tarot, another inviting and complex forest for which we are blessed to have a guide like Rachel Pollack.
25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars At Play with the Tarot 16 Oct 2002
By Sandra A. Thomson - Published on Amazon.com
"Playing" with the Tarot in its most serious and its most frivolous sense is much of what Rachel Pollack, and her latest book, are all about. The Forest of Souls is one of her most creative and innovative books to date.
Part of the purpose of the book is to inspire us to learn to become "playful readers." The book calls upon us to learn to use the Tarot to explore unknown territory, to let go of more traditional definitions and layouts, and to use the cards in "divine play" to open pathways to the "sacred mysteries and riddles of existence." In Forest, we are shown many examples of how to do just that.
The book is filled with delightful anecdotal stories from different cultures and traditions, including one that says Thoth invented the Tarot so he could play cards with the Moon. Never heard that one? Read the book for more details.
Cards from many different decks are used to illustrate points, including Rachel's own Shining Tribe deck, as inspirational a deck as was ever created.
For those who have never been able to have a reading with Rachel, Forest offers examples of some of the techniques and ways of reading that she puts into practice, and that you may want to extend into your own practice. This is a book all about "breakthroughs" in reading the Tarot and in living your life.
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Non-Traditional Tarot 2 Jun 2004
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Rachael you've done it again!

I never thought that you could surpass SEVENTY EIGHT DEGREES OF WISDOM but you did it with this one!

The book goes beyond the terrestrial presentation of the cards and presents a unique (and long awaited) perspective for the Tarot community. Basically she says, in fact she screams between the lines "USE THE TAROT". Forget the hype, the type, the schools and the rules and pick up the cards and use them.

And don't believe you have the "correct" tarot and the "right" meanings because you don't and no one does. That's what I like about this it is unpretentious; it's just one woman's take on a pack of cards that happen to be Tarot cards. But it's an amazing take on some awe inspiring cards.

I'm sure we all could come up with pretty interesting interpretations and valid ideas if we would use the cards the way she does. Often the creators of decks say that they never intentionally created a meaning etc. for an image but it somehow got there. These are the images that speak the meanings of the cards - so subtley and yet so powerful - wheter intentionally or unintentionally placed. They are the sub and unconcious, the real, the apparent and that which we cannot see.

E.g. The Woman with the Camel - refer Cabala, Jewish Lore, Biblical interprestation, Arabic customs, etc. these are her connections, the list goes on however, even a Bugs Bunny cartoon where Bugs decides to leave his Castle and travels on a camel through the desert to reach some traders in an oasis (my connection). I'm sure you would never pick up any of these references with a standard deck and a typical tarot book! And the woman with the camel is the High Priestess.

Don't discard what the foreparents of Tarot have thought - build on it. You can buy this book and learn how to use the Tarot or you can pick up the tarot and use it yourself!

Phoinix Sky
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Essential Addition to Your Tarot Library 24 Oct 2002
By Zanetta Wilson - Published on Amazon.com
In her new work, Rachel Pollack takes readers deeper into the Tarot than many would have thought possible. She says that "the Tarot works best as an instrument of our wisdom when we dare to ask it outrageous questions..." and she does, indeed, ask questions and explore concepts that are both complex and challenging.
Forest of Souls is written so that people who have had little exposure to Tarot can follow along (cards from many decks are reproduced right in the text), but also where people who have spent years studying can find new things - even the third and fourth times through.
Rachel encourages us to let go of more traditional definitions and layouts, and to use the cards in "divine play". With tales of myth and history from different cultures and traditions, she moves from the origins of the Tarot to the origins of the universe... and through the inner workings of the human soul.
Although this book is not about how to read the Tarot, it will significantly enhance your reading skills and enlarge your notion of what the Tarot can be and do. Many of the questions pondered also create transformational experiences as Rachel leads us to "explore possibilities outside our normal ways of thought."
I highly recommend Forest of Souls to anyone interested in Tarot, no matter what their level of experience or skill.
Were these reviews helpful?   Let us know
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Customer Discussions

This product's forum
Discussion Replies Latest Post
No discussions yet

Ask questions, Share opinions, Gain insight
Start a new discussion
First post:
Prompts for sign-in

Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions

Look for similar items by category