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The Tarot: A Contemporary Course on the Quintessence of Hermetic Occultism Paperback – 30 Mar 2004

4.3 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 494 pages
  • Publisher: Aeon Books Ltd; New edition edition (30 Mar. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1904658008
  • ISBN-13: 978-1904658009
  • Product Dimensions: 22.7 x 15.4 x 2.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,162,053 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
Mouni Sadhu's book on the Tarot is not an easy read. Compared to many more recent books on Tarot, Psychology and Spirituality it may appear to be outdated and rather difficult. It is important however to place the book in its historical and social context.
Essentially the book contains the philosophical viewpoint of a Russian Esoteric Group at the turn of the 20th Century, which influenced Mouni Sadhu's early thinking. Sadhu in turn, developed the basic material gained from this group to produce this spiritual/esoteric masterpiece of a book which incorporated his later mature thinking. This included his work with Paul Sedir's Society of Spiritual Friendships, as well as Sadhu's acceptance of the great Indian Teacher Sri Ramana Maharishi of India as his Spiritual Master.
The book culturally was written at a time when it was believed that certain techniques (which are now freely written about elsewhere) should not be given to the general public via a book transmission. When this point is understood, it helps to make Sadhu's 'Tarot' much clearer in its approach to esoteric truth. Mouni Sadhu believed that if a person had the right moral and mental abilities this would enable them to understand the meaning of the lessons contained in the book. This may not a popular attitude today when instant information is expected and demanded of readers. But Sadhu wrote all his books with the intention of helping his readers to think deeply about what was being read and to practically experience where possible what he was describing from his own personal experiences.
The book is certainly not easy to follow, but to readers who persevere with the ideas and exercises contained in the book, benefits such as greater clarity of thought, a sense of personal direction and greater inner freedom are a few of the benefits of Sadhu's 'The Tarot'
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Format: Hardcover
Having bought the first edition in the late sixties, I am pleased to see this book is still in print. It is apparently based on An Encyclopedic Course of Occultism by Prof. Gregory Ossipovitch Mebes published in St Petersburg in 1912. The current version by Mieczyslaw Sudowski [Mouni Sadhu] contains references to the spiritual teachings of Sri Ramana Maharshi as well as the more mainstream Hermetic philosophy. Although the work stands well enough on its own, some familiarity with Sudowski's other books Concentration and Ways to Self-Realisation would be useful. It deals almost exclusively with the Major Arcana with only a passing reference to the Minor Arcana; the chapter on Arcanum XIII is probably the most significant and describes the processes of death and astral projection. A reader who is familiar with the Tarot attributions used by the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn will find the scheme used in Sudowski's book is different. The illustrations of the Major Arcana closely resemble those of the Oswald Wirth deck and consistent with the Continental approach taken in the book. I would have been more comfortable if Sudowski had stuck to Hermetic teachings and left Advaita Vedanta to his other book In Days of Great Peace but apart from that The Tarot is an excellent intoduction to an important aspect of the Western occult tradition.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
great to get a copy again after my allen and unwin hardback disappeared years ago.
would still like a copy of that edition
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x92dac6d8) out of 5 stars 12 reviews
37 of 37 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x92c4e4e0) out of 5 stars A Contemporary Masterpiece 11 April 2000
By Maldon - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Mouni Sadhu's book on the Tarot is not an easy read. Compared to many more recent books on Tarot, Psychology and Spirituality it may appear to be outdated and rather difficult. It is important however to place the book in its historical and social context.
Essentially the book contains the philosophical viewpoint of a Russian Esoteric Group at the turn of the 20th Century, which influenced Mouni Sadhu's early thinking. Sadhu in turn, developed the basic material gained from this group to produce this spiritual/esoteric masterpiece of a book which incorporated his later mature thinking. This included his work with Paul Sedir's Society of Spiritual Friendships, as well as Sadhu's acceptance of the great Indian Teacher Sri Ramana Maharishi of India as his Spiritual Master.
The book culturally was written at a time when it was believed that certain techniques (which are now freely written about elsewhere) should not be given to the general public via a book transmission. When this point is understood, it helps to make Sadhu's 'Tarot' much clearer in its approach to esoteric truth. Mouni Sadhu believed that if a person had the right moral and mental abilities this would enable them to understand the meaning of the lessons contained in the book. This may not a popular attitude today when instant information is expected and demanded of readers. But Sadhu wrote all his books with the intention of helping his readers to think deeply about what was being read and to practically experience where possible what he was describing from his own personal experiences.
The book is certainly not easy to follow, but to readers who persevere with the ideas and exercises contained in the book, benefits such as greater clarity of thought, a sense of personal direction and greater inner freedom are a few of the benefits of Sadhu's 'The Tarot'
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x92c4e534) out of 5 stars Wheat from chaff 20 Sept. 2007
By Upstate New Yorker - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This is an intense course on Western metaphysics that uses the Tarot as a way to explain principles and concepts of subtle energetics. Even with the intentional blinds and the use of a traditional structure the author " Mouni Sadhu" managed to write up the lab book of his Magnum Opus and thus to shed light on the paths of those who follow. It is good to see that this work is being kept in print.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9337e480) out of 5 stars Very interesting for symbolic knowledge 24 Aug. 2009
By Pablo S. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
The book focuses on the meaning behind the major arcana. It seems to be an excellent source for learning about the symbolism behind the cards, as well as complimentary ideas on Hermetism, ocultism, etc. Although that, on my understanding, it doesn't intend to be a practical guide on how to read the cards.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x92c4e7bc) out of 5 stars The title is accurate for this book. 5 stars 9 Oct. 2014
By Albert Nygren - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I first became aware of this book in the 1960's. I was in an Ashram lead by a person who was Mouni Sadhu's friend and who lived with Mouni for a time in Australia. I worked with this book for a few years and thought it was genuine as are all of Mouni Sadhu's books. There is so much material in this book that I cannot pretend to say that I understood it all even though I read the entire book several times and worked with some things and found that they worked. If you are interested in this type of thing, especially to make Spiritual progress, I don't think you will be disappointed although I am amazed how much it has increased in piece even over the last year. It is a privilege to write a review of a book written by Mouni Sadhu, who I admire so much. Thank you.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x92c4e75c) out of 5 stars Old Truths 4 Jan. 2012
By Daniel L. Sweet - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I have been aware of this book since the early seventies,and as a lifetime occultist,recommend it highly.
One possible point of confusion in this work is the numerical arrangement of the tarot trumps;placing the
#0 card;the Fool in a different numerical position than normal.Although this arrangement is not unknown(or
unworkable),in recent years followers of the Western Tradition have gravitated toward a more apparent,sensible
numeration sequence.Nevertheless,the true value of the work lies in it's observations of the nature of the
trumps;how they affect thought processes and emotions,and even practical exercises designed to aid in understanding
and stimulating the related abilities and insights that the tarot can bring.All of this makes this work an excellent
study,and can help greatly in bringing it all"down to earth",regardless of how well it may align with some other
systems.All of the old truths are there,offered with genuine insight,and are a great addition to the tarot section
of any library.
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