Thoth Tarot & Divination
Thoth Tarot, What is it? How does it differ from the Other Tarots and how is it Relevant Today?
The Thoth Tarot (pronounced: ‘thought’) was created by one Aleister Crowley. It was said to have been designed with the “New Aeon” in mind. In reference to Crowley’s creation, S .H. Soror I.W.E. explains, “The medieval packs are hopelessly corrupt, compiled by partisans of existing political systems, or otherwise far from presenting the Ancient Truth of the Book in a coherent system, or shape of lucid beauty. It had from the beginning of his study been his fervent wish to construct a worthy Text.”
Though he may be the creative genius behind the 78 card deck, he could not have completed this enduring task of 5 years without the mesmerizing artistic skills of Lady Frieda Harris. Naively, they estimated it would only take three months to complete the entire project. Known to all in their circle, and most truly by Lady Harris herself, Crowley was not the easiest person to work with; for he is exact in his desires and made it known when criticizing the artistic productions of the Thoth Tarot deck.
The Tarot dates back to a time as early as the 14th Century. As its identity evolved, readers began using it for fortune telling. Fortune telling is the divination practice used to gain insight in to the 'design' of the future; accounting for past and present actions that brought us to our ‘today’. Many individuals I come across are naturally skeptical of divination practices for one reason or another. To them I simply state, "The future is not certain by any means, however, there is a Grand Design to everything that was, is, and will be created in the Universe. The amazing feature of the human being, that we must not take for granted, is our ability to enact our free will. Enacting our will adjusts the outcome."
Consider a small portion of the Grand Design for a moment. It is commonly accepted that when certain planets move, by certain degrees, respective to our planet, entire sectors of the galaxy are affected.
For an example, let us review the planetary retrograde. Normally, the planets move west-to-east through the stars at night. This is referred to as prograde motion. However, periodically a change is initiated and they move east-to-west through the stars. This is retrograde. The retrograde movement continues for some time and then it returns to prograde.
Mercury Retrograde negatively affects communications (electronic and bio-beings), Venus Retrograde can mute our personal emotions - making it difficult to express one's self, and during the Mars Retrograde, people can experience an increase in drive, desire, force or become easily infuriated. After all, Mars is the planet of War. This list is not all inclusive, but you should have a better idea of how we are not just affected by “living” things within our sight.
Now, let’s revisit free will. We will use Mars as an example. The Mars' Retrogrades are predicted. We can research astrology, science & horoscope books and web pages to record the dates. Although its retrograde can cause people to be easily infuriated, we do not have to act on the energy that quickens us to anger. Knowing what is ‘designed’ to take place, we can then enact our free will to take swift action to mitigate or reduce the effects. We can increase our meditation time, take a vacation, turn off our phones after certain times of the day, or make more of an effort to pay attention to our triggers.
This is the purpose of divinatory practices. The goal is to equip clients with the knowledge of the design; understanding that our actions can work in accordance with the design, increasing the energy of the outcome, or work against it, decreasing the design’s impact on our lives.
Reconsider the prior example. If one decided to act in accordance with the fiery-red energy of Mars, they will, in turn, be working with the design - increasing the energy of anger, hostility, force, or drive to obtain desired results. Working against the design, one needs only to take heed of actions of a calming nature. This reduces the effect of the ‘design’ of the Mars Retrograde.
The same notion applies to a Tarot reading. Readers are able to, depending upon the type of card layout, glimpse the past, present and future designs. Clients gain insight into past events and actions which have led to the present situation they find themselves in.
Unlike many other varied tarot decks, Thoth Tarot encompasses human evolution within its divinatory application. The thought patterns of human beings have shifted greatly from the patterns of, for example, the Dark Ages. This great shift calls for man-kind to embrace each other’s differences or, at the very least, acknowledge that our fellow man has the right to practice their chosen faith or way of life without persecution or ridicule. Granted, this does not include those choosing to spread hate and negativity for the sake of spreading hate and negativity.
More and more, we are shown examples of how people of historically opposing faith-based practices are able to live in harmony with one another. The times are changing because the thought patters are changing. The changing thought patterns encourage a more evolved state of mind, which gives rise to more evolved beings. So a man thinks, a man is. This deck accounts for the shift because Crowley’s insight and divinatory experiences helped him realize the changes that were to come.
Thoth Tarot, in my opinion, provides a more coherent picture of the sought after divine knowledge due to the foundation of its thought provoking design and its ability to inspire questions of the universe.
In his personal life, Crowley aimed for answers, as he dove with determination, into different ritualistic and faith practices…towards the same end, all for the goal of knowledge. Fittingly, just as the creator, this deck invokes re-evaluation of one’s life, questioning every facet - using the cards to formulate the questions.
Have an open mind and you might be surprised at the amount of insight you could gain.
If this short excerpt has helped you better understand Thoth Tarot in its relation to divinatory practices, then I have accomplished my goal. If you have further questions, please feel free to send a message via the “Contact Us” page. If you would like to schedule a reading, please visit the appointment link to do so.
Let us be Present. Let us be of Light. Let us be of Love.
Crowley, Aleister. (Original Print: 1944). “Book of Thoth (Egyptian Tarot)”. pp.xii. Weiser Books. San Francisco, CA. Newburyport, MA.