Absolute key to occult science
Absolute Key to Occult Science: The Tarot of the Bohemians; The Most Ancient Book in the World, for the Exclusive Use of Initiates by PapusExcerpt from Absolute Key to Occult Science: The Tarot of the Bohemians; The Most Ancient Book in the World, for the Exclusive Use of Initiates
The key to its construction and application has not yet been revealed, so far as I know. I therefore wished to fill up this deficiency by supplying Initiates, those who are acquainted with the elements of occult science, with an accurate guide, which would assist them in the pursuit of: their studies.
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The Tarot of the Bohemians
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Tarot of the Bohemians , along with the Pictoral Key to the Tarot , constitute the core literature of 19th and early 20th century 'Tarotism'. If you have no experience reading occult literature of this period, you may find yourself profoundly lost after the first couple of pages, staring at the abundant and profoundly esoteric tables, charts and diagrams, trying to get a clue as to what Papus is talking about. Papus is after a 'Theory of Everything', and finds evidence for it in the Tarot and a set of correspondences with everything from the tetragrammaton to numerology and astrology. There is no evidence of any kind of playing or fortune-telling cards prior to the thirteenth century, either in literature or folklore. Note that playing cards could not have become popular until the introduction of printing in Europe. The Tarot is believed to have originated from an elaborate deck of cards invented in Italy in the fourteenth century. The Romany people probably started to use this deck for cartomancy fortune telling by cards about a century thereafter.