Warning, this book is for the serious student of Ceremonial Magick and Qabalistic Tarot. This book and the related deck require a serious commitment to a strict and complex system of magical thought and a good head for academic correspondences, math and detailed diagrams. Now -- if that has not scared you off, this book is the real thing. Lon Milo DuQuette is a very knowledgeable and very entertaining man with a great deal of wisdom to share. Solid research and years of practical experience have obviously gone into the making of this book.
"It is not my intention to lure you away from any tarot deck you may currently prefer, but to help you understand the incalculable power and significance of whatever deck you may be using."...Lon Milo DuQuette...
The Tarot of Ceremonial Magick (U.S. Games) is not just another novelty tarot deck and the ground-breaking companion book by the same name is more than just a book about tarot cards. It's author and creator, Lon Milo DuQuette, is one of today's most knowledgeable and entertaining experts on the subject. His bold claim that the Tarot of Ceremonial Magick is the 'key that unlocks the secrets of all tarot decks' is backed solid scholarship and decades of magical practice.
Written in the relaxed, humorous style that has made his earlier works so popular, DuQuette demonstrates how the Hebrew Qabalah forms the foundation upon which the Western Hermetic arts (astrology, tarot, geomancy, and the various branches of ceremonial magick) are constructed. He goes on to reveal that the Tarot is a visual representation of qabalistic fundamentals and is the common denominator between the various Hermetic arts. "One could even say the tarot is the DNA of the Qabalah. Properly decoded it reveals not only the mysteries of the Qabalah but also that of all other Qabalah-based systems." To prove this DuQuette has ingeniously placed pertinent data and images relating to Astrology and the two most widely practiced varieties of Qabalah-based magick -- Enochian Evocation and Goetia -- on the cards themselves. His book provides remarkably detailed background information concerning these magical practices...a single-source book without equal. The Tarot of Ceremonial Magick is truly the key that unlocks the secret of all tarot decks.
I own the deck and book and i am pleased to say that Lon Milo DuQuette has both met and exceeded my already high expectations of his work. This deck has for me been a valuable tool and and a great teacher of different forms of magick. For an individual who wants to diversify his/her education this deck definately will help. The book that was written for it is also of great help and i would highly recommend it to you. All in all i give this deck a 10!
From as far back as I can remember I wanted to be a magician. Not any magician mind you, but a magician like Merlin in King Arthur's Court. A magician that could fly, walk on water, become invisible and do all sorts of wondrous things. That's what I wanted to be. I still do. But age has tempered my dreams. Now I want to fly in the Inner Worlds, walk on the scintillating water of the subconscious, become invisible to the negative forces of this world and change myself. To be truly loving and compassionate would be nice and I do try. But in my present human condition I fall fare short of perfection in this or anything else. It's magick that makes these things possible. Lon Milo DuQuette is a magician, a magician's magician. He teaches in a simple and straight-forward manner. He makes complicated ritual uncomplicated and easy to replicate. He brings the Qabalah down to elementary terms easily understood. He removes confusion concerning the Cube of Space. All these things he teaches in a non-threatening and humorous manner. His book is filled with more information than I can probably digest in a lifetime. He does a good job ilustrating the paths on the Tree of Life for the 22 Trumps and explaining the 10 Paths for the pip cards...The deck is the standard size and quality we have come to expect from U.S. Games, larger than a poker deck but not too large to handle easily. Each card contains information about astrology and two systems of magick. The court cards also contain the I-Ching hexagrams. The Magical systems are the Enochian and Goetia which are adequately explained in the text... If you aspire to being a magician, a ceremonial magician, a ritualist, a scholar of magick, or diviner of magick, this deck and book is good place to start. If you want to mold yourself into a better person, to change yourself like magick, this is great place to start. a review by Alexander DeGrate, The American Tarot Association Newsletter Vol. IV No. 2 Spring, 1999
Duquette is one of the rare few to both design and illustrate a deck. The technical details encompass traditional Tarot, astrology, I Ching, Enochian and Holy Thelemic sigils. Personally I think some of the illustrations are cartoonish, especially the Empress trump. I love the court cards, however. Not only is Duquette an academic of the Arts, he is also a practioner with experience in the Temple; this gives the deck sufficient depth to warrant inclusion on most shelves specialising in modern Magick. I am not sure if this review is appropriate as I have not had the opportunity to read any book, strictly speaking, that deals with the deck. But it is a pretty cool deck!