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Jodorowsky's "Way of Tarot"

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Originally Posted by lightsofblue View Post
I don't want to say too much, there is too much to be said about Jodorowsky and all that he does and so I cannot talk objectively or without stupidly lavish praise.
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As mentioned I still have yet to read Way of Tarot [...]
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What’s unique to me is that I have a supreme difficulty finding flaws in any of his ideas at all.
Well, now you've got me curious. If you haven't read his book, then what has been your exposure to his ideas? I mean this question sincerely -- if there's some source for his tarot ideas other than his book, I'd be interested in taking a look at it.
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On further reflection - although I still think it's more than a little facile as a way to resolve a structural anomaly in his model - walking backwards may not be an entirely "un-Hermit-like" activity.

Pertinent anecdote:

Back in my late teens I had a real problem with authority figures (yeah, I know, who didn't?). I was in the Army, and when I finally soured on all the BS, I hit upon a few malicious ways to rub it in. Because you were supposed to salute officers when approaching them outdoors, I hit on the idea that I would just turn around and walk backwards until I passed them, thus able to pretend I didn't see them and not salute at all. Not a single one of them ever called me on it. It must have been completely outside their ability to process. (Well, just once: I was finally mustering out of the Army, and while out-processing in Germany I encountered the high mucky-muck of USAREUR and 7th Army Troops [must have been a two-or-three-star General] and his lap-dog . . . er, Chief of Staff, a Sergeant-Major. Of course, I walked backwards and the agitated Sergeant-Major hustled up and said incredulously "Do you know who that is?" I didn't really care at that point.)

By the way, this is just another bit of humor; I'm still thinking how the "backwards-walking" Hermit might somehow fit into the traditional interpretation of this card, independent of Jodorowsky's viewpoint. Maybe in the "one-step-forward-two-steps-back" mode of spiritual development?
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I've just been Googling and apparently hermit crabs often walk sideways and backwards. I don't believe Jodorowsky mentioned this in his book, though, so probably not something he thought of.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lee View Post
Well, now you've got me curious. If you haven't read his book, then what has been your exposure to his ideas? I mean this question sincerely -- if there's some source for his tarot ideas other than his book, I'd be interested in taking a look at it.
Not speaking for lightsofblue, but YouTube would be one such source.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barleywine View Post
On further reflection - although I still think it's more than a little facile as a way to resolve a structural anomaly in his model - walking backwards may not be an entirely "un-Hermit-like" activity.

Pertinent anecdote:

Back in my late teens I had a real problem with authority figures (yeah, I know, who didn't?). I was in the Army, and when I finally soured on all the BS, I hit upon a few malicious ways to rub it in. Because you were supposed to salute officers when approaching them outdoors, I hit on the idea that I would just turn around and walk backwards until I passed them, thus able to pretend I didn't see them and not salute at all. Not a single one of them ever called me on it. It must have been completely outside their ability to process. (Well, just once: I was finally mustering out of the Army, and while out-processing in Germany I encountered the high mucky-muck of USAREUR and 7th Army Troops [must have been a two-or-three-star General] and his lap-dog . . . er, Chief of Staff, a Sergeant-Major. Of course, I walked backwards and the agitated Sergeant-Major hustled up and said incredulously "Do you know who that is?" I didn't really care at that point.)

By the way, this is just another bit of humor; I'm still thinking how the "backwards-walking" Hermit might somehow fit into the traditional interpretation of this card, independent of Jodorowsky's viewpoint. Maybe in the "one-step-forward-two-steps-back" mode of spiritual development?
I love your anecdote about your army years!

I am reading the book now, in French. It is a very dense book with loads of information, musings, exercices, spreads, etc. I love it. Very profound and thought provoking. Maybe the English version is different? I can't imagine reading it from cover to cover, there's too much material in it!
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Originally Posted by Laura Borealis View Post
Not speaking for lightsofblue, but YouTube would be one such source.
Thanks Laura! Unfortunately I am monolingual.
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Oh, are they all en español? ¡Perdón! I'm sure I've seen Jodo videos with English subtitles, though.

(I, too, am a monoglot, other than random words.)
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Mine is in English- you can get it on Amazon.

It was an amazing book. He really brought the tarot to life- the way he went into the majors- it worked well for me. Your mileage may vary.

https://www.amazon.com/Way-Tarot-Spi...y+way+of+tarot
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This is my take on Jodorowsky, his book and his approach to tarot.

Jodorowsky is a man of prodigious talents whose creative vision informs disciplines of many kinds. His book on tarot (one of the many he has written) is richly layered, with the aim of describing and eliciting relationships between the cards as they represent lived aspects of the human psyche. Jodorowsky's understanding of tarot is based on a nearly lifelong process of visionary (indeed, shamanic) interaction with the characters depicted in the cards, and as such the book represents not so much a system, as a flexible scaffolding for understanding the levels of meaning within and between the cards.

Jodorowsky is very much in the magic-realism tradition, in which the imaginal realm contains truth beyond facts. This approach is reflected in everything he does - filmmaking, his work as a psychotherapist, autobiographer, philosopher, tarotist. Nothing he says is set in stone: he intends his work to be a jumping-off place for many points of view.

No less a tarot teacher than Yoav Ben Dov was a student of Jodorowsky's for several years, and they maintained their mentor-mentee throughout Yoav's too-brief career. In his book, The Open Reading, Yoav frequently refers to Jodorowsky's insights into the cards - the only thing he didn't care for was the redesign of Jodorowsky's deck. Jodorowsky at one point told Yoav that he would be glad to discuss the meanings of the cards, with the understanding that his viewpoint might change between one day and the next (tarot being an expression of dynamic processes).

With reference to The Hermit "walking backward," I believe that Jodorowsky means retreat into oneself, a going within after long periods of outward expression; to me, this is very much like the action of a retrograde planet, which of course only seems to move backward in space.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Penthasilia View Post
Mine is in English- you can get it on Amazon.

It was an amazing book. He really brought the tarot to life- the way he went into the majors- it worked well for me. Your mileage may vary.

https://www.amazon.com/Way-Tarot-Spi...y+way+of+tarot
Hi Penthasilia! We were talking about the videos on his YouTube channel as being in Spanish.

I've read the introduction, and skimmed the rest. I haven't bought it yet, but probably will eventually. I wouldn't rely on it for historic fact - he is a mystic and a storyteller, not a historian. But there are plenty of sources online and in books for the factual history of tarot. I can forgive him the bending of the "truth" in the service of a greater understanding of the cards.
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