The Herbal Tarot Review byC.J. Rose
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traditional card titles except The Medicine Wheel, The Suspended Person, Pan
eight: Strength; eleven: Justice
suits are wands, cups, swords and pentacles
courts are page, knight, queen and king
illustrated pips, captions are names of herbs
purpose: Page of Pentacles
Golden Dawn based, this deck enhances tradition with the assignation of an herb to
each card. The LWB says, As above, so below; as within, so without applies to the
order of nature. Everybody has experienced the spiritual and psychological weakness
that accompanies disease and ill health. Depression can be attributed to a stagnant
liver, excessive giddiness to congested heart energy, excessive sympathetic feelings
and longings to a weak spleen and pancreas, grief and sadness to an imbalance of lung
and colon energy, and insecurity and paranoia to weakness of the kidneys and adrenal
glands. These correspondences are all made according to traditional herbology.
Herbs as the sacrament of nature are used not only to effect internal physiological
changes, but spiritual and psychological transformations as well.
Michael Tierra has also written The Herbal Tarot with more specific text. The deck
assigns Ginseng to The Fool for cosmic energy; Astragalus to The Magician for
creativity; Peony to The High Priestess for intuition; Dong Quai to The Empress for
womens tonic; Atractylodes to The Emperor for digestion; Sage to The High Priest for
purification; Parsley to The Lovers for aphrodisiac; Cyperus to The Chariot for
direction from within; Cayenne to Strength for circulation; Licorice to The Hermit
for calm; Slippery Elm to The Medicine Wheel for soothing; Plantain to Justice for
adjustment; Kelp to Suspended Person for softening; Elder Flowers to Death for
protection; Echinacea to Temperance for antibiotic; Lobelia to Pan for playfulness;
Garlic to The Tower for breakthroughs; Skullcap to The Star for relaxation; Lemon
Balm to The Moon for nervine; Angelica to The Sun for stimulant; Goldenseal to
Judgment for cleansing; and Comfrey to The World for healing.
Blue Flag speaks for the deck in the voice of the Page of Pentacles. The herb is
alterative; these cards intend to change us. The herb is cholagogue; these cards
intend to minimize our toxic putrefecation, to aid digestion. The herb is laxative;
these cards intend to purge our plumbing of that which no longer holds nutrients.
The herb promotes salivation; these cards want our eager assimilation. The root is
used for all chronic and acute liver disorders and for blood purification; these
cards intend filtration and cleansing of our vital fluids.
See more cards from the Herbal Tarot Deck
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Review Copyright 1998 C.J. Rose
Images Copyright 1988 US Games Systems, 179 Ludlow St., Stamford, CT 06902, (800)544-2637, Fax (203)353-8431