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A friend who’s stopped reading Tarot cards, has thrown them away and turned to the church, told me I should stop reading my tarot cards in my bedroom, and that it attracts spirits. Can I have a second opinion from an experienced tarot reader? – Quora

The Ten of Pentacles

Well personally, if your friend had said that to me, I would reply to them: “You say that like it’s a bad thing?”

I think the most important thing is that if you value your friendship with this person, you should behave tactfully towards them, and simply not get out your tarot cards in their presence, or talk about your tarot-activities to them. They are on their own path, and it’s up to them to realize the truth for themselves, and maybe in the future they will realize the error of their ways and come to you seeking forgiveness.

As to whether your friend is technically correct or not, unfortunately I have to say this:

In the tradition with which I am familiar, Tarot DOES attract spirits i.e. good spirits! And, what’s more: it’s supposed to!

What I mean is that in my tradition, every Tarot divination begins with an appeal to a Higher Power to give guidance to the reader when interpreting the cards. This Higher Power may be characterized as “angelic” in nature… or depending on your point of view, it may also be characterized as a Gnostic or Pagan god, a manifestation of the actual God, or an Energy of a refined or higher spiritual vibration.

Those of a pseudo-scientific bent might characterize it as a recondite part of the Unconscious which is not understood by modern psychology… yet. In any case, the Tarot cards when properly unlock powers within your mind, which is the key to a successful divination – there is nothing superstitious about the cards by themselves.

However, no matter how you characterize the mechanics of how Tarot works – through good spirits, angels, manifestations of Divinity, Energies, psychological phenomena, etc – from the point of view of an overly dogmatic Christian, these are all “devils” or the work of Satan even if it is not true. It is unfruitful arguing with such people, so it’s often best to keep silent.


Source: Alex Sumner’s answer to A friend who’s stopped reading Tarot cards, has thrown them away and turned to the church, told me I should stop reading my tarot cards in my bedroom, and that it attracts spirits. Can I have a second opinion from an experienced tarot reader? – Quora

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What’s your favourite tarot layout? – Quora

(A2A) For simple questions I use a fifteen card layout, like this:

Fifteen card tarot spread.

This is most appropriate for situations which can go one of two ways. The general principle is that in each set of three cards, the centre-card represents the main meaning, whilst the cards to either side influence how the first card is to be interpreted.

The cards on the right hand side indicate what is likely to happen if the Querent doesn’t attempt to change what he or she is doing, or intending to do. The cards on the left hand side indicates what will happen if he or she does change, or deliberately does something new. Moreover: the cards in the top-row represent the short-term future; whilst the cards on the bottom-row represent the long-term (i.e. what is likely to develop as a result of what happened in the top-row). Hence:

  • Cards 3, 1, 2 – the present – now;
  • Cards 4, 8, 12 – short-term future, no change;
  • Cards 5, 9, 13 – short-term future, change;
  • Cards 6, 10, 14 – long-term future, change;
  • Cards 7, 11, 15 – long-term future, no change (or what would have happened anyway).

(The numbers represent the order in which the cards are dealt.)

Apart from this, the rest of the interpretation is pretty conventional (i.e. observing traditional tarot meanings). One peculiarity though is that it does not necessarily used “reversed-cards” – however, cards to either side of each main card can be used to indicate whether it is “well-dignified” or “ill-dignified.”


Source: Alex Sumner’s answer to What’s your favorite tarot layout? – Quora

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Occult: What is the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn? – Quora

The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn was a magical order founded in 1888. Its teachings focussed on the Qabalah, Hermeticism, astrology, tarot, alchemy – albeit through the lens of Theosophy. In its higher grades (the “inner order”) members passed from the theoretical to the practical and practiced ceremonial magic.

Notable members included S L MacGregor Mathers, Aleister Crowley, W B Yeats, Dion Fortune, A E Waite, Paul Foster Case, as well as a whole host of others.

“The Golden Dawn,” by Israel Regardie

In 1934, Israel Regardie went public with the teachings of The Golden Dawn, although many of them had been published previously by Crowley.

The original order broke up and stopped operating under the name of “Golden Dawn” in the early twentieth century, but there are nowadays modern revivals of the Golden Dawn, operating in England, America, and elsewhere.


Source: Alex Sumner’s answer to Occult: What is the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn? – Quora

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Do you prefer The Hermetic Tarot over the Rider Waite tarot? – Quora

The Hermetic Tarot

The Rider Waite Tarot Deck

(A2A) I own both decks: for my own particular reasons I prefer using the Hermetic Tarot over Rider-Waite, and usually end up recommending it to others (I even bought a copy of the Hermetic Tarot as a Christmas present for my girlfriend!)

Because I am keenly interested in the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, the Hermetic Tarot is my go-to deck, because it is an actual GD deck. It closely follows the designs specified in Book T, which is the Golden Dawn’s inner order teachings on the Tarot; it includes the astrological attributions of all 78 cards; and each card features divine and angelic Hebrew names which reflects the Qabalistic associations thereof. It is thus an ideal deck to complement Golden Dawn teachings.

The Rider-Waite deck, whilst not completely incompatible with the Golden Dawn, is not GD-specific, despite the fact that A E Waite and Pixie Coleman-Smith were both (at one time) GD members. The Rider-Waite deck is more generic in outlook. It is thus perfectly suitable for people who just want to use it for Tarot divination: the fact that it is fully illustrated in colour makes it especially suitable for giving readings to clients. So although I prefer the Hermetic Tarot, that’s not to say the Rider-Waite deck is not a good deck in its own right.


Source: Alex Sumner’s answer to Do you prefer The Hermetic Tarot over the Rider Waite tarot? – Quora

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What is your source of occult information? – Quora

Alex at home, studying.

(A2A) Donald Michael Kraig’s “Modern Magick” was my first serious book on practical occultism as well. It is an ideal book for beginners because (a) it contains a lot of suitable material to get you started; and more importantly (b) it also has an extensive bibliography which will clue you in as to where to go and what to read to pursue your studies further.

Other books I generally recommend:

(For beginners):

(More advanced):

(Even more advanced):

The Greek Magical Papyri In Translation” (H D Betz), “Transcendental Magic – its Dogma and Ritual” (Eliphas Levi), “Light on Yoga” (BKS Iyengar), other books by Dion Fortune, Israel Regardie, Crowley, S L MacGregor Mathers, primary texts on Adam McLean’s Alchemy website / Joseph H Peterson’s website, etc, etc, etc.


Source: Alex Sumner’s answer to What is your source of occult information? – Quora

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How can you do a tarot reading on yourself? – Quora

(A2A) In the tradition with which I am familiar, it is unusual not to do tarot readings for oneself, because: firstly, Tarot is most importantly a tool for self-discovery; and secondly, you can only ultimately learn the real meanings of the cards through practice. A real Tarot reader ought to know what the Tarot cards mean without having to refer to the Little White Book all the time.

You can use any decent Tarot spread like the Celtic Cross, but you should Use ALL the tarot cards at once: don’t resort to the vile practice of removing some of the cards from the deck, and don’t interfere with the cards once you have dealt them. In other words, don’t resort to any of the practices that hucksters use to cheat rubes who come to them for fake readings. Be brutally honest with yourself – that’s how you achieve objectivity.

Whilst you may chose to go to another person to read your Tarot cards for you, I find the idea of insisting on someone go to another person for a reading is deceitful: it encourages slavish dependence at best, and charlatanism at worst.

Source: Alex Sumner’s answer to How can you do a tarot reading on yourself? – Quora

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What does dreaming about demons but not scary mean? – Quora

A Demon

(a2a) On the quest to become a fully-realised individual, every one of us, sooner or later, comes to realise that we each have a Dark Side, and the only way to become whole is to face up to it. It remains Dark, because it represents what we most hate about ourselves. Ironically however, it is also a source of strength. Hence the journey to wholeness involves integrating the Dark Side – or making your Demons work for you, instead of against you.

Luckily for you, dreaming about demons but in a non-scary manner would suggest that you are confident about facing up to your inner darkness, and are already well on the way to becoming a well-rounded individual.

Source: Alex Sumner’s answer to What does dreaming about demons but not scary mean? – Quora

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Do you believe in tarot card readings? Have you ever had one? How do you believe that would work? Did you gain insight from the reading? Did you do it more than once? With different readers? – Quora

Tarot

(a2a) I rarely go to other people for Tarot readings (I’ve had about two in my entire lifetime) – usually it is me giving readings for them. So if I wanted a Tarot reading, the first person I would think of going to is myself. The cards make me think of things which I would not normally consider, and hence because I am forced out of my habitual thought-patterns, this helps to spark my intuition. The Tarot cards really work as Keys to Unlock my own insight, and stimulate my psychic awareness.

I also find that if I have a question bothering me, and I do a tarot reading on it once, that provides closure on the issue, whatever the particular outcome of the reading happens to be. I strongly advise against the temptation to attempt to have more than reading or consult more than one reader attempt to answer the exact same question – you would be losing objectivity by hearing only what you want to hear.

Source: Alex Sumner’s answer to Do you believe in tarot card readings? Have you ever had one? How do you believe that would work? Did you gain insight from the reading? Did you do it more than once? With different readers? – Quora

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How do you astral project from a lucid dream state? – Quora

Astral Projection

(a2a) If you can lucid dream already, you are so close to full astral projection. You just need to be able to do three things:

Firstly: take control of your lucid dream. Not only do you need to be aware you are dreaming but you can alter the content of, and move about in, your dream at will.

Secondly: you have to do something which in New Age speak is called raising your level of vibration. In practical terms this means invoking divine energy, e.g. through the chanting of divine and angelic names, meditating on and filling yourself with the qualities of the place on the Astral Plane you wish to visit, etc.

Thirdly, after you’ve done that, you then project to somewhere you -know- is on the Astral Plane. This could be done by deliberately flying as far away from Earth as possible – which signifies getting away from content created by your own brain, until you reach astral phenomena which exist objectively. Alternatively, try dissolving everything you see into Whiteness – and when you think you can’t dissolve any more, dissolve -that- as well.

In occultism, the most popular method is to project through a Magical Symbol as if it were a Doorway – this has the effect of taking you away from your own mind, to a place on the Astral Plane which the Magical Symbol represents. “Tattva” symbols are commonly used to take one to a place associated with Elemental forces, but you could theoretically use a whole host of symbols, such as astrological or Qabalistic symbols, or even Tarot cards.

Apas (i.e. Water) tattva

It is always sensible to remain cautious: be open to what you see and experience but don’t necessarily believe it; ask for a Guide to accompany you when you project, and always make the beings and things you encounter show bona fides that they are telling you the truth. Then when it is time to leave, thank your guides, and retrace your steps back to your physical body here on Earth.

Source: Alex Sumner’s answer to How do you astral project from a lucid dream state? – Quora

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Alex Sumner’s answer to Was Elijah taken by God or aliens on a fiery chariot into heaven? – Quora

Elijah and his “Chariot.”

Neither. In this case, “Chariot” (Hebrew: “Merkavah”) refers to a type of mysticism, kind of like proto-Kabbalah. In other words, he astrally ascended to heaven in a state of perfected consciousness, whilst his physical body probably just died normally. This is not dissimilar to the Yogic concept of “Mahasamadhi,” which is how great sages end their physical incarnation whilst in a state of perfected meditation.

Source: Alex Sumner’s answer to Was Elijah taken by God or aliens on a fiery chariot into heaven? – Quora

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