A Critical Introduction to Tarot
Examining the Nature of a Belief in Tarot
by Simon Kenny
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Pub Date 01 Jan 2024 | Archive Date 13 Nov 2023
Collective Ink Limited, IFF Books
How does Tarot work? Why is it so popular today? Is it just for fortune tellers?
Presenting Tarot to the incredulous and curious, those who wish to know the basis for its continued cultural relevance.
Tarot has seen a recent uptick in interest that warrants explanation. This book, however, is not another take on the cards’ meanings and how to read them. Instead, independent researcher Simon Kenny presents Tarot to the incredulous and curious and those who wish to know the basis for its continued cultural relevance.
A Critical Introduction to Tarot explains the practice in its historical and metaphysical contexts, and investigates its supporting belief structures, from witchcraft and magical practices to popular psychology. Throughout these pages, connections to politics, philosophy, psychology, numerology, astrology, Freemasonry, statistics, interpretative symbolism, self-help, social media -- even the nature of truth itself -- are explored. An accessible read aimed at demystifying Tarot for those unfamiliar with its magical, occult roots and growing use as a personal development tool.
A Note From the Publisher
As a writer on the topics of spirituality and belief, Simon brings a keen awareness of philosophy and contemporary politics to his experience of spiritual and religious life. Now a ‘non-believer’, it is his life’s mission to understand the colourful forms that personal convictions often take. He does this with a grounding in the ceaseless autodidactic study that has become the cornerstone of an examined life. Simon is based in Galway, Ireland, where he writes among the limestone and heather.
Another book on the Tarot? You might think that with many a bookshelf crammed with previous attempts to explain the mystery behind this "wicked deck of cards," adding one more would be unnecessary. But Simon Kenny's engaging work approaches this very familiar terrain from an uncommon perspective, looking less at what the cards mean than at what the many different people who have attempted to answer that question believed they meant. His wide-ranging study draws on both venerable traditions and more contemporary readings, adding quantum physics, philosophy of mind, feminist critique and much else to the mix, proving that whatever might be behind these undeniably evocative images, they retain their power to excite, inspire, and, with any luck, enlighten.
Gary Lachman, author of Dreaming Ahead of Time: Experiences with Precognition, Synchronicity and Coincidence
Simon's work asks the questions any person interested in tarot should ask: what is divination? Why does it work? What does divination suggest about the nature of reality? Can and should that alter the way we lead our lives? A Critical Introduction to Tarot provides a structure for exploring and perhaps even coming to terms with these ineffable concerns. A valuable companion for the metaphysically minded tarot reader.
T. Susan Chang, author of Tarot Correspondences: Ancient Secrets for Everyday Readers