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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 25 April 2017
Probably the most insightful tarot book. Even if you are not into tarot its a really interesting read, accurately and eloquently describing the spiritual psychology of the souls journey, through archetypes, social constructs, mysticism and shared human themes. Very accessible and easy to read, yet deep and meaningful. I'm a tarot novice and this book has deepened my relationship with the art of tarot but also my understanding of who we are. Love this author, talented lady.
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on 3 May 2014
It too an INCREDIBLY long tome to be dispatched but on the plus side it was new as described. The second book dealing with the Minors is not much help but the first one is a much better study than most that are out there.
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on 15 April 2017
The best book on Tarot bar none. This is all you need.
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on 3 September 2001
I very quickly got frustrated with the simplicity of many books on the Tarot. The tendancy of books to go light on explanation and heavy on arbitrary sounding lists of card meanings might work for some, but I find that I prefer to go a little deeper.
This book has let me do that. Rachel Pollack explains in detail the symbolism present in each card and suit. The major arcana get several pages each, the minor a rather shorter description ranging from two to three paragraphs up to a page or three. The detail into which she goes make her explanations very interesting - for example, did you notice that the robe worn by the Queen of Cups (Rider Waite Smith deck) is trailing in the water, whereas that of the King of Cups is not. Ms Pollack points that out, and explores what meaning it might have.
As well as discussion of the individual cards, the book also contains several very useful chapters on readings.
All in all, a more advanced book for people who like to think.
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Being relatively new to Tarot and eager to get my hands on anything that can help me on my journey, I bought this book along with my first ever tarot deck. Deemed to be one of the definitive authorities on Tarot and cited widely and often in many other books on Tarot, a first reading confirmed that this book would be an essential for those more well versed in Tarot than I am. Whilst I found it fascinating, my lack of basic knowledge meant it was extremely hard going in places and I have to admit that I have laid it aside for the time being. Do not forget that I am a total beginner and so whereas the reviewer below found it to be like A Level, I found it like trying to get the PhD without first having the Batchelors degree.

Pollack goes much further than giving the usual or traditional meanings of each of the cards, preferring instead to go into thorough analysis and discussion of the esoteric nature of each card and the Tarot in general. The author also deals with the reversals of each card.

Originally published in two separate volumes, one for the major arcana and one for the minor and court cards, this edition sees the two halves join as a whole, providing a journey into and far beyond what you know about Tarot.

I think this is hard going for the beginner, particularly if you are not familiar with the traditional meanings of the cards - i definitely think buying this as an accompaniment to my first deck is like trying to run before i can walk, however, having said that, I can definitely see that once I've knuckled down on the basics, this book is going to help me enhance my readings and my understanding of the Tarot fourfold.

If you are an experienced or even 'advanced' reader, you will definitely need this in your collection - not only will it help you boost your esoteric understanding but you may even realise that there are many more angles to the Tarot than you may have previously thought.

Definitely a worthwhile investment for those serious about Tarot.
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on 25 October 2013
I am finding this book a joy to read even if my own brain is a bit slow on retaining all the information. I think it is quite traditional and maybe a bit deep for more casual learners. However I would strongly recommend it to anyone wishing to gain a 'way in' to understanding what Tarot is and how one can use it for self understanding and development as well as a way to help others to do the same.
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on 26 August 2008
I have been doing Tarot since I was a small child as my mother was a well known psychic and Tarot reader. When I was 19 I had the good fortune to stumble across this book. Even though I already read the Tarot this book opened me up to a new level. I started teaching Tarot by the age of 21 and now I am 42 it has been a life long passion. Rachel Pollack is probably the best Tarot teacher in the world and I owe a lot of my success and understanding to her natural brilliance. It is not an easy read but a very rewarding one. The Tarot world is indebted to Rachel for this break through classic. If you are at all interested in Tarot then this book is essential reading.
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on 18 July 2013
A very complete book on the Wiate tarot deck of cards.
Difficult for a beginner, but very callenging.

Here we can finf every possible meaning of each card.
Without doubt a book that will accompaign all through my life - it shows every possibility of interpretation we can make, but also leaves us with the "liberty" of our own interpretion
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 7 October 2007
These days most anybody can do a tarot reading. There are literally hundreds of different decks all complete with canned readings for each card. In a way, it's rather like reading your daily horoscope as the results are rather generalized to match virtually anyone.

Definitely, not every tarot reader is equal in quality. The best readers go beyond simplistic generalizations. They not only tailor their layouts and reading results to match the individual but also look to the deeper meanings of the cards. These unique abilities are both invaluable skills and amazing talents.

Seventy Eight Degrees of Wisdom is a must have resource for anyone wanting to do real tarot readings. The author has an inherent ability to see depth within the cards that many need to be taught to notice. Within this book, she shares her valuable insights and urges the reader to follow suit. Originally this book was two books separating out the major and minor arcane. This new format brings these important references into one easier to access resource.
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on 30 November 2014
Once again I bought a book based purely on the reviews of others and once again I wonder how I can see things so differently. I found this book boring and nothing more than a description of the image on the card and not the definitive interpretation of cards which I expected. I read what the author had to say on a few cards and afterwards I was no nearer understanding what the card meant than I was before. For me a waste of money.
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