Since the first hand-painted deck of Tarot cards appeared in 15th Century Italy there have been many manifestations of this collection of occult symbols. The most famous of these is no doubt the Rider-Waite Tarot. This deck of Tarot cards has intrigued and inspired occultists for generations since its creation in 1910 by English mystic Arthur Edward Waite and the artist Pamela Colman Smith. Both Waite and Smith were members of the English occult society The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, a quasi-Masonic esoteric society that existed to delve into the mysteries of Hermes Trismegistus.
The Rider-Waite Tarot is here accompanied by the commentary of P.D. Ouspensky's Symbolism of the Tarot, a short work that uses the symbolism of the Major Arcana of the Tarot to better illustrate the secrets and mysteries contained within these iconic images. P.D. Ouspensky, a close disciple of G.I. Gurdjieff, uses a Kabbalistic method of interpreting the Major Arcana that combines the cards into a narrative story told from the perspective of an unnamed initiate that is not in numerical order. It is recommended that the reader proceed through this gallery from right to left.
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