The History Of Tarot: DEATH Card XIII in the Tarot Deck

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Tuesday, May 01, 2007

DEATH Card XIII in the Tarot Deck

This Card could probably also be called ‘Osiris’, whom was the ancient Egyptian god for the underworld. (The underworld is much like the Northern mythology of Valhalla, which was an afterlife kingdom among the skies.)
Speaking about Death, when it comes to either a tarot reading or an Astrology reading, is such a sensitive case, which most people still to this day misunderstand. The image above is the ’death card’ in the Marseilles tarot deck, some refer to this card as ‘devil, trader, the loss card’ etc. Actually the Marseilles cards are not old at all, they are collected and named around 1930 by the French cartomancer Paul Marteau, the word Cartomancer means ‘the art of reading through cards’.
Cary Yale Visconti Tarot     card number 13 in the Visconti deck of cards

The oldest set of cards is probably the Cary-Yale Visconti deck (Image above) which is a hand painted deck of cards coming from Italy. It was the high noble family called Visconti, this family line dominated northern Italy between the 14th and 15th centuries. 67 cards remain in existence.


Coat of Arms
of the Visconti family Line
From: http://www.traditioninaction.org/religious/h073rp.Shields.html

It should be noted that after what we in the west call ‘before Christ’ and ‘After Christ’ BC and AD, there seems to be this newly spread thought of good and evil divided in a very clear manner. As Christianity took a hold of people all over the world, people started to judge each other ‘for their beliefs’ and not their actions and such. If you would just speak a word, and in curtain countries they would stone you right then and there, some places are still like this (in the year 2007??). One way to keep such a thought or idea alive would be in presenting an image of pure good and evil all the time. This was not the way of the ancient days, which believed in a ‘Balance’. In Egypt can be found a story (on the walls of Edfu temple) which brings light to the ancient thought process, which we might even learn from in today’s world.
the 12 Zodiac signs in the old days
The card ‘Death’ is also attributive with the number of 13, which in some religions indicate a negatively effect. We must conclude that such a thought probably belongs to the Christian and Roman Catholic Church. Another interesting thought is that there are 12 zodiac signs which astrologers talk about, but there is also the 13 Zodiac sign, which is unknown. An unknown element would be seen negatively because of humans urges for control, so do we think that our clock determine the time... The card referred to as ‘death’ will probably never be respected as it should, because of our mere basic thinking, especially in modern days (strange that we are in the year 2007 and most of the earths regimes are making the same mistakes as always before.. quit odd if you ask me). Personally when I do a reading, I tend to use some emotions which are very sensitive towards other peoples moods, besides this comes my intuition and the things I already know about life in general. I could take you to a very old lady whom lives in a trailer, where she travels around here in the north, she just looked into my eyes and told me things about my father, about a child,, things no one should be able to do, if only our logical mind half rules… Death is only the beginning….. Always. For thou soul shall travel for ever in a ring of everlasting evolutions. In each sphere of life, you will be confronted with emotions which you have left behind before. You will feel the Goosebumps of the souls Essen’s as you feel closer to yourself, than you ever had. Be not frightened.

An empty tomb In a dusty old room
Death does not exist, it is a word that humans created to communicate to each other that a person’s body was probably never to move again. I believe the ancient Egyptians used the word ‘Osiris’ for describing such a state. 

 Off course the word ’death’ for our human (material) body does exist, and all fear is probably rooted in that meatier (cosmic meatier). In a Tarot deck (especially the modern ones) we find that such cards as ‘death – XIII and the Devil – XV’ have changed their names to such as ‘Transformation’ and ‘the deceiver’, this corresponds to the changes which modern astrologers have made to their way of ‘communicating’ a reading or a chart. This change goes to the psychology of our so-called modern societies. I personally think these changes undermine the real messages in a reading. [Let me tell you something else which you might not have known, the Arabic word for ‘death/dead’ is ‘Mut’. Since I am so passionate about ancient Egypt, I can tell you that an Egyptian goddess is called ‘MutT’, and her origin is so ancient that no one can really give a definition about her ‘being/Essen’s’. I personally believe the Arabic word of ‘Mut’ is very much linked to the ancient Egyptian goddess called ‘MutT’, not only that I have come to find that ‘MutT’ is Most important in understanding ‘the book of the dead’ and other parts of the ancient tombs. So the name of MutT is also linked to ‘death’ in itself].
Information about the card number 13 in the Tarot deck
DEATH: The astrological sign that is attributed to the card ‘death’ is Scorpion, which is a water sign that is ruled by the planets Mars and Pluto, which are to powers that together make a passionate and intense force. But the ‘Death’ card symbolizes such a great force, which comes with the ending of something old to the beginning of something new. For the Phoenix to rise, it must die and become aches first. In this card we are confronted by our deepest fear, namely the fear to change. We create a comfort zone, but this is also the place where we are most prohibited to grow, to use our senses to go deeper into levels of advancement in our spirits/natures. A true Libra-person would say, I cannot grow alone, only through the connection to my fellow man, will ‘I’ and ‘We’ be able to grow together. 

A very good article about the History of Tarot: 
At the heart of the Judaic and Islamic religions is the belief that no graven images are permissible of the Prophets. Tarot, on the other hand, is image rich. Tarot thrives on art, pictures and images. Tarot is unthinkable without its beautiful pictures. The western culture has no problem with plagiarism when it comes to appropriating eastern knowledge. Scientists such as Isaac Newton stole many Islamic ideas and used them as their own without ever feeling the need to acknowledge the sources. While there is evidence of propaganda in using texts such as the Sepher Yetsirah and the Bahir to convert Jews to Christianity by suggesting that these texts predict the Coming of the Messiah, Islamic influences were simply deleted. For example, we only have references to tarot being banned in the 1370s, while the first examples of decks appear around 1450 to 1480. Michael Dummett proposed the Islamic origins of tarot in 1980, forty years after the discovery of the Mamluk cards in Istanbul. In the 14th century the prototype tarot deck had 52 cards, and it originated in the Mamluk playing cards. These cards had four suits, and the court cards were the King and a Minister, which evolved into the Kings, Knights, Knaves and Queens Click here to read more: http://www.supertarot.co.uk/lessons/history.htm

16 comments:

Carolyn said...

First of all, your post was Amazing!!! I truly appreciate you historical references and truly deepens the meaning of the Death Tarot Card.

For me, the Death Tarot card is telling us more. We would be foolish to deny one important element to the concept of Death. Death references our own mortality. It is an underlying fear that lies within all of us. We all want to live. In fact, we tend to avoid the very thought of it. At some point in our lives, we need to accept its inevitability. In this context, the Death Tarot card urges us to face our fears. We must come to accept our own mortality. Once we accomplish this, life takes on new meaning. Life, indeed, becomes much more precious.

Best to you!!!!
-Carolyn
http://bestonlinepsychics.com

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