Category Archives: Taromancer

What is your favourite non-divinatory use for the Tarot?

Taromancer, by Alex Sumner

You now have the opportunity to win a free print-copy of my novel Taromancer – which I am bringing out in March. This is my story of a woman who goes on a spiritual quest involving the twenty two major arcana. This has been available to download via Kindle up to now, but I will shortly be publishing a paper version as well. I will autograph a copy and mail it to the lucky winner anywhere in the world.

All you have to do is tell me your favourite non-divinatory use for the Tarot.

Most people are aware of using Tarot for giving readings, but I am here interested in all the creative and unusual ways it can be employed in addition. Magical, mystical, or otherwise. From the well-known to the obscure, and all shades in between.

To enter, please reply to this post in the comment section below!

"What do you mean I can't enter because I'm a cat!" :(

“What do you mean I can’t enter because I’m a cat!” 😦


Filed under Supernatural, Taromancer

Tarot and Spellcasting

Influential occultist in her own right Rihanna, who appears in the song “The Monster” by Eminem.

I’m just relaying what the voice in my head’s saying
Don’t shoot the messenger…


So there I was, navigating some of the more recondite backwaters of the astral plane, when someone whom in waking-life I strongly suspect of being a Secret Chief gave me three new Tarot decks as a present. “Aha!” I thought, when I returned to this planet. “This gives me an idea for a blog post!” So here is a little magical technique which I have developed in my own practice, for incorporating the Tarot with Spellcasting.


This is suitable for all general Magia spells. I have dealt at length with using Tarot for Theurgia in my book Taromancer. The principles are simple enough, although it does assume that one is already familiar with the basic techniques of ceremonial magick. It goes like this:

  1. Carefully form a clear idea of what it is you want to achieve with your intended spell.
  2. Perform a Tarot divination for yourself, using the following as the question: “I intend to cast a spell to…” [INSERT SPELL INTENTION HERE]. “What will happen if I do so?”
  3. Now as you are performing your Tarot divination, it will start to become obvious that at least one card is more important in the spread than all the rest – I shall refer to this as the “Key Card.” Now it could either be a Positive Key Card or a Negative Key Card, i.e.:
    • A Positive Key Card is the card that most points to success;
    • A Negative Key Card, on the other hand, represents the one thing that is most preventing you achieving success.
  4. Armed with this knowledge, you can now put together the magical ceremony to achieve your spell intention, basing it around either invoking the energies of the Key Card if it is a Positive one; or banishing if Negative.
  5. You may also consider that more than one card in the spread has the potential to be a Key Card, as it were, so it may be appropriate to do a more sophisticated ritual involving multiple invokings / banishings.

Now the GD system of magick has the advantage that because each and every one of the 78 cards in the Tarot deck can be related to the Qabalah, it is possible to formulate a very specific invoking / banishing ritual, to wit:

  • For the Major Arcana
    • For the elemental cards, i.e. The Fool, The Hanged Man, Judgement (both qua Fire and qua Spirit) and The Universe (qua Earth), use an appropriate elemental Pentagram Ritual;
    • For the zodiacal cards, i.e. the Emperor, Hierophant, Lovers, Chariot, Strength, Hermit, Justice, Death, Temperance, Devil, Star, Moon, use a Zodiacal Pentagram ritual;
    • For the planetary cards, i.e. the Magician, High Priestess, Empress, Wheel of Fortune, the Tower, the Sun, the Universe (qua Saturn), use a Hexagram ritual.
  • For the Minor Arcana, you need to use two rituals, i.e. –
    • the elemental Pentagram ritual corresponding to the suit; and either
      • the Hexagram Ritual of the Sephirah corresponding to the pip number of the card; or
      • another Pentagram ritual for the Court cards (i.e. Princess = Earth; Prince = Air; Queen = Water; King = Fire).

Remember, the Hexagrams for the Sephiroth are those of the corresponding planets, but with the Sephirothic names and attributions instead of the planetary ones. The Saturn Hexagram is used for the Supernals, whilst the Luna Hexagram is used for both Yesod and Malkuth.

Example from my own practice:

Some time ago a lady of my acquaintance had lost her job, and was getting quite desperate to find a new one. I therefore did a tarot divination for her, and came to the conclusion that her chances of getting a new job would be quite high… were it not for an awkwardly placed Five of Swords (Defeat) in the spread. I therefore performed a ritual (in private) to “banish” this card. This included me performing an opening,  the Supreme Banishing Pentagram of Air Ritual (for the suit of Swords); the Supreme Banishing Hexagram of Geburah Ritual (because it was a 5); and then closing.

Within a week, she had found a job, and texted me news of her “unexpected” good fortune. 😉


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Nixie The Cat gets her own Blog Post

OK, so tomorrow I will be in London doing research for the most awesome blog since Golden Dawn Manuscripts and Where To Find Them. This will probably be published in the New Year as it depends on the good offices of people who have already gone on the Xmas Holidays. *

* Update: actually I managed to get it out the day after. See here for more details.

In the meantime, here is a completely gratuitous series of photos in honour of the true star of my latest novel Taromancer, namely: Nixie The Cat, of whom Miranda is the human. 😉

"I read your fortune, but first: cross my paw with catnip."

“I read your future, but first: cross my paw with catnip.”

"You are going to have to sacrifice a lot in order to provide me with tuna."

“You are going to have to sacrifice a lot in order to provide me with tuna.”


“Your fortune will change for the better if you provide a black cat with a Forever Home.”

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December 18, 2013 · 6:29 pm

Christianity as Theurgy: Christ the Initiator

Esoteric Christianity is a theme which I explore in my latest book. Many of the most powerful rites in occultism are essentially Christian in nature, though not necessarily associated with the mainstream churches. And yet the subject does not get as wide an airing as it deserves! (Or so it appears from my point of view). Anyway, I reblogged this because this post because it is part of a series which raises some of the issues involved.

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Filed under Religion, Taromancer

Foretelling the Future – How Not To Do It

Astrologer poking his head out of the sphere of fixed stars to see what lies beyond

“Help! I’m stuck!” 😉

In an article in the forthcoming Journal of Consumer Research, researchers report that the way people react to a prediction of the future (e.g. an astrological forecast), depends to a large extent on the extent to which they believe in fate. In some circumstances this may lead to seemingly counter-intuitive behaviour. (NB: this story was misreported in the Daily Telegraph today under a headline luridly suggesting horoscopes may be bad for you, despite the fact that technically speaking, no actual astrology took place during the study concerned.)

The gist of their findings is this: if you give a prediction of ill-omen to someone who believes fate is malleable, that person is likely to choose a “virtuous” course of action (i.e. in an attempt to avert the omen). However, if you give the same prediction to someone who believes fate is fixed, they are likely to just thing “F— it,” and just go do something self-indulgent. In such a situation, trying to use the prediction as a warning to them to mend their ways will end up having the opposite effect that which is intended.

This has potentially important implications for those of us who practice divination, either in the form of Astrology, Tarot, or some other method.

In order to make use of divination as an effective tool to help someone, it is necessary first to make them understand that their Fate is not fixed, that they still have free will and therefore the choice to either avoid or accept the message being given to them. There is an old saying: the stars impel, they do not compel. This rather goes back to the ancient Hermetic view of the universe, which was that it was possible to rise above the influence of the stars and the planets if one were to ascend in consciousness – to “free one’s mind,” in other words. Divination – typically in the form of astrology – was thus the key to achieving this freedom, as it enabled the individual to be fully informed of the route he or she needed to take in life – rather than be imprisoned in a deterministic, mechanistic universe.

This approach can be applied by analogy to other forms of Divination, e.g. the Tarot, which releases intuitive insights from the consciousness of the reader. Instead of predicting the future, per se, the divination is in fact pointing out present causes: and, indeed, present opportunities. These only create a “fate” where the querent is unwilling to take responsibility for his or her own actions.

My tarot themed novel, Taromancer, is free until December 11th 2013. Hurry to download a copy now!

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Taromancer, the new novel by Alex Sumner, launched today!

You can get a completely free copy of my new novel TAROMANCER which is officially launched today!

Taromancer cover artwork © copyright 2013 Alex Sumner

Taromancer cover artwork © copyright 2013 Alex Sumner

This is a brand new stand-alone story, featuring all-new characters. It is a Visionary Fiction novel set in contemporary England, and tells the story of one woman’s spiritual quest, involving the Tarot.

Disenchanted and disillusioned with her career as a fortune teller, Miranda meets a crazy old man one night, and is plunged into a spiritual quest – with the twenty two trumps of the Tarot as her companions.

Despite being cast in the form of fiction, the book contains much material on topics such as Ceremonial Magick, Esoteric Christianity, the Kabbalah, Theurgy, and of course the Tarot itself.

Taromancer is usually priced at $2.99 (US) but for a limited time only it is free to download for Kindle via Amazon.

To claim your free copy, just click on one of the following links within the next twenty-four hours:

United States
United Kingdom

Please share this with everyone you know – the more the merrier. Thanks!

Free Kindle Reading Apps












“Taromancer” in other ebook formats and print – coming March 2014!


Filed under Taromancer

Taromancer: Official Launch Party on 10th December 2013

taromancer-reduced.pngThe waxing Moon forms a harmonious angle with Mercury, the planet of writers and auspicious beginnings, during the planetary hour of Mercury next Tuesday afternoon. What better time than to launch my new Tarot-themed novel, Taromancer!

This will be initially available exclusively on Kindle via Amazon. It will be priced $2.99 (US), however: to mark the occasion of its official launch, for a limited time only (December 10th – 11th) it will be FREE from all of Amazon’s sites across the world.

To take advantage of this opportunity, you should:

Or, add yourself to the corresponding event on either

to receive timely updates on when, where and how to download my book.

Please share this with everyone you know: the more the merrier! Thanks. 🙂

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Filed under Taromancer

How I First Met Alex Sumner

By special guest blogger, Miranda Warren, Tarot Reader.

Taromancer cover artwork © copyright 2013 Alex Sumner

Taromancer cover artwork © copyright 2013 Alex Sumner

Hello, Alex has asked me to write a few words which he wants to post on his blog – so I think I can do no better than explain how I first came to collaborate with him.

I first met Mr Sumner earlier this year, when I visited him at his home. I knew I had come to the right address, judging by the shouting and screaming coming from inside. Needless to say I felt perturbed, but I decided to go through with it because I had been advised that he was the best, nay, the only man for the job.

I rang the doorbell and waited in trepidation. I could plainly hear the sound of a very bad tempered man approaching the door muttering “What fresh hell is this?” and harrumphing loudly.

I was just about to run for it – when the door flung open, and an absolutely gorgeous man with dark good looks appeared before me. “Hi, I’m Alex Sumner,” he said, throwing a peace sign at me, “novelist and writer on the occult.”

“Mr Sumner!” I exclaimed.  “Do you normally answer the door stark naked?”

“Oh!” he said, suddenly realising his predicament. “Sorry about that – you caught me in the middle of a magical operation. Step inside for a moment, whilst I put some clothes on.”

“You don’t have to on my –” I began: but too late. He darted into the darkest recesses of his apartment. Five minutes later he emerged, this time wearing the finest couture from Camden (all black). Rings of strange and curious design adorned his fingers.

“What was all that shouting and screaming I heard earlier?” I said.

“Downstairs neighbours, I’m afraid. Absolutely ghastly,” he said.  “Now I suggest we repair to a local hostelry to talk. I would invite you in, but I haven’t yet cleaned up the bloodstains from last time.”

A short while later, and in the more convivial atmosphere of a restaurant whose terrace overlooked the local cricket pitch, I explained to Alex the situation.

“I’ve been undergoing a mystical adventure recently,” I said to him, “involving both Tarot and Theurgy. I’ve kept a detailed log of the whole thing and I’m trying to turn it into a book. But I need some help finishing it off, so that’s where you come in. I want you to help finish it, and pretend you wrote it, so people will think it’s a novel.”

“… ‘All the very best, Alex Sumner,’” he said, as he autographed a copy of one of his books for a young blonde girl who just so happened to be passing by at that very moment. He turned back to me. “Yes, yes! An interesting premise. Do go on. Bloody hell, has the waitress gone on holiday or something?”

“Ahem, yes,” I said. I continued: “It strikes me that there have been more than enough books on Tarot and divination, a good number on Tarot and path-working, and quite a few on Tarot and spellcasting for everyday purposes, but almost none on Tarot and pure Theurgy.”

An electronic beeping noise interrupted us: I realised Alex’ iPhone had gone off. “Excuse me, I’ve just got to take this,” he said. “Hello? A love spell you say? Might I just point out that you haven’t yet paid me for the last one? Sod you, goodbye!” He ended the call, looking cross. Immediately though, he brightened up as he put his phone away. “Sorry about that, a former client of mine. Do go on.”

“Well,” I said, “My point is that I’ve in fact seen more books which suggest using Tarot to explore goetic forces, the dark recesses of the lower-self as it were: but none for exploring the higher self through ceremonial magick. Which I find ironic, seeing as the Tarot is so closely aligned to the Qabalah, and the Qabalah is nothing if not the basis for high Theurgic operations.”

“Hmm, I’ll take your word for it,” Alex said. “I really don’t know the first thing about all this Qabalah stuff. I just look it all up on Wikipedia.” I looked at him shocked: but he continued “I’m getting parched, is no-one serving today?”

I looked suspiciously at him for a moment, but then went on. “In so doing,” I said, “I also explored esoteric Christianity, which does not seem to get a wide press in occultism. And yet, under its banner falls some very powerful magical rituals which I have had many trusted friends describe to me as the most powerful they have ever experienced.

I looked at Alex, and felt shocked by his reaction: he seemed to be paying attention to me! Warming to my theme, I quickly continued. “So, to go about writing a book about Tarot and Theurgy: the first thing that occurred to me was that instead of just theorising about it, I should actually do it. For a start it would make it more sympathetic to potential readers. Also, I’ve tended to notice that I’ve actually learnt more from occult writers when the write of their own personal experiences, or publish memoirs based on their magical records, rather than sententious how-to books. For example, the Dancers to the Gods by Alan Richardson, My Life With the Spirits by Lon Milo Duquette, and even some of the books of E A Koetting.”

“OI, CAN I GET SOME FUCKING SERVICE OR WHAT?” Alex bellowed at the top of his voice. Everyone in the restaurant stared at us in shock. A baby started crying. “WE’RE DYING OF THIRST OVER HERE, FOR FUCK’S SAKE.” He turned to me and smiled. “Yeah, that sounds great,” he said in his normal voice. “But why this whole business of making it into a novel?”

“Ah, that’s the clever part, if I say so myself!” I said. “If I were to say to people ‘this is the Truth,’ and then start talking about something unbelievable, that creates a barrier in the reader’s mind which limits their enjoyment of the subject. But if I were to say instead ‘this is Fiction,’ and hence the reader is free to disbelieve it if they so wish, no such barrier exists, and consequently the reader can let his or her imagination run away with it.

“This is how Paulo Coelho, for example, was able to write an inspirational book about Alchemy – by casting it in the form of a novel. On a different subject but related in principle, no-one would have read 1984 by George Orwell if it had just been a ranting essay. But because he wrote it in the form of a fictionalised novel, it’s hailed as an all-time classic.”

“Ah well you’re speaking to the right person,” Alex said.

“I am?” I said, my hopes rising.

“Certainly!” he said. “I’ve been pretending to write decent novels for years!”

I curled my lip in a sort of snarl, but Alex just grinned in an asinine fashion that would have caused someone with a shorter temper than myself to punch him. Hard.

“Most importantly, however,” I said, “with this book I wanted to create a work of Art. Conceptual art, in the form of a book, as it were. De-commodified – like artists have themselves attempted to de-commodify contemporary Art – so making money out of this is not my primary focus.”

“WHAT!?!” Alex cried, suddenly blanching with shock. “No money? Are you mad, woman?”

I shrugged. “I see it as an experiment – performed purely for its own sake. I decide what I want to do, I do it, I write up the results. It’s successful as long as I’ve done it with integrity, and if other people actually happen to like it, that’s a pure bonus.”

“But, but, but…” Alex wailed. “It’s got to have action! It’s got to have violence! It’s got to have at least one chapter set in an abandoned warehouse, and another in the intensive care unit of the local hospital! It’s got to have swearing, gratuitous sex-scenes, preferably between two or more hot lesbians, and it’s got to have lots of cheeky references that will offend any leaders of Masonic orders who – ah! At last!”

At that moment, a young waitress wearing a top displaying ample-cleavage distracted Alex from his rant, and proceeded to take our orders.

“Taromancer” is out, December 11th 2013. Watch this space for further announcements, including details of how to download a free copy!

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Filed under Books, Taromancer

Tijuana book by Alex Sumner?

Mexican flag

¡Viva Mexico!

Mexico has given the world so many valuable things, such as Tequila, Chili Con Carne, Mescaline, Carlos Castaneda, the Aztecs and Chocolate. Now, by way of saying thank you, my books are on sale there!

Yes! You now have the opportunity to buy my books in Kindle format from Amazon’s new Mexican site. See here for more details.

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Filed under A Greater Power, Books, Licence To Depart, Opus Secunda, Shall We Kill The President?, Taromancer, The Demon Detective, The Magus

Os ebooks de Alex Sumner: agora disponíveis no Brasil!



Ah Brazil! You have given the world so many things! Like Pele, Capoeira, Bossa Nova, Samba, thong bikinis, Cachaça, the Rio De Janeiro Carnival, etc etc. So, to say Obregado on behalf of the rest of the world, I, Alex Sumner, am now making my Ebooks available in your fair country!

Please note that they are only in English – I have not yet translated them into Portugese. Head on over to my Brazilian page for more details!

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Filed under A Greater Power, Books, Licence To Depart, Opus Secunda, Shall We Kill The President?, Site Update, Taromancer, The Demon Detective, The Magus