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JMD's Reading the Marseille Tarot- Chapter 1, Introduction

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swedishfish612  swedishfish612 is offline
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JMD's Reading the Marseille Tarot- Chapter 1, Introduction


Welcome everyone! This is the first thread, focusing on the Chapter 1, the Introduction, as well as a bit of background information on the study group.

Quick background information:

- This study group is for anyone who is working through Jean-Michel David's book, Reading the Marseille Tarot. You can read a little about the book here: http://www.fourhares.com/tarot/course/ and there is a link to Lulu.com, where you can purchase the book either in e-book format or a softcover book.

- This book uses the Jean Noble TdM as its focus. You can find this deck at the Flornoy's website here: http://www.tarot-history.com/index.html or at Tarot Garden.

- The book is split into 30 chapters (including the Introduction) and I had thought to post a new thread about every week to 10 days, depending on how quickly we seem to go through the material. If every 10 days works better for everyone, that is fine with me as well! The book is meant to be self-paced, so don't stress if you're getting behind. Just post when you can.

- If you're reading this thread months after the group began, please join us anyway! I'm sure there will always be new folks picking up this book and wanting to learn from it, and hopefully others will join in whenever they are ready!

So on to the content for Chapter 1!


Exercises in this chapter:
- Lining up the trumps (p.20)- simply lining up the trumps in sequence, noticing the French titles and any groupings that stand out to you

- Lining up the trumps in complementary pairs (p.22)- Lining up cards 10-1 on top, then 20-11 right beneath them (so that La Roue de Fortune is above Jugement, L'ermite is above Le Soleil, and so on). Noticing how each card in the pair complements the other. JMD focused on how each of the top row cards is an outer manifestation of the inner layer of the card just beneath it. Other associations can be made as well. (For this exercise, Le Fou and Le Monde are not used.)

- Lining up the suits- Again, simply laying out the cards and just looking. Looking at the Batons together, then the Coupes and so on. Also, you can lay out all of the Aces, all of the 2's, etc. Just seeing how each suit develops, including the court cards


Possible points of discussion- These are just some of the things touched on in this chapter, and I'll elaborate on my own thoughts in another post. But feel free to discuss anything that comes to mind after reading this chapter! This is just what I myself noticed and thought might make for good conversation. And of course the exercises can be discussed as well!

- TdM I vs. TdM II- how to tell the difference, which you find yourself drawn to

- Roman numerals- In the Noblet, the Roman numerals are additive. So IV is not four; it's six. Four would be IIII. (Maybe it's just me, but I'm still getting used to it! lol)

- Regular day and time for study- JMD suggests setting one up as we begin this study. Are you doing this or will you just fit in in whenever?


*****

Thank you to everyone who is joining us! I hope we learn a lot from each other. Please, at ANY time, feel free to offer input and suggestions to make our group better. Also, let me know if you think the week to 10 day time period is appropriate!
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swedishfish612  swedishfish612 is offline
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Forgot to say- Don't feel as though you have to post about every single exercise, or every/any of the discussion points I mentioned. I just wanted a little something to get us going, especially since several people don't have the book in hand right now.
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Rose Lalonde  Rose Lalonde is offline
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Thanks, swedishfish! Great overview of the Intro.

I also like his note about comparing the Noblet to other TdMs and other tarots in general.

Quote:
Originally Posted by swedishfish612 View Post
- Regular day and time for study- JMD suggests setting one up as we begin this study. Are you doing this or will you just fit in in whenever?
Since he talks about lining up cards in different ways and then repeating a number of times, I'll probably need more than one day this week instead of all at once.
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dancing_moon  dancing_moon is offline
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Thanks for setting this up, swedishfish!

Personally, I have a hectic week-day schedule, so I'll only be able to study at weekends. I might not be able to keep even the 10-day pace, but I'm surely going to come back later and add my thoughts about the exercises I'll do, so don't worry about me.

I'm starting tomorrow, with my Grimaud, and possibly lining up Piatnik and Vandenborre for comparison. I'm also going to start an 'analog' journal, jotting down my impressions on paper always helps me focus and articulate my thoughts more concisely.
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Rose Lalonde  Rose Lalonde is offline
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Laying out the courts today, I keep seeing trivia quiz questions. The only King who's outside... the only court card that shows the suit symbol twice... etc.

I'm enjoying the exercise with the type II Madeniť and I Noblet.

On to the pips...
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swedishfish612  swedishfish612 is offline
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Lining up the trumps in complementary pairs


The idea of lining up the trumps 10-1 and 20-11 and seeing connections was my favorite part of this chapter. JMD says that there's many ways to line them up and look at connections; this is only one way of trying it out. But still, my findings amazed me, lol.

Here were my thoughts:

- I, Le Bateleur and XI, Force- To truly act upon his will, Le Bateleur must first conquer his fears and the "beast" inside, his shadow self.

- II, La Pances and XII, Le Pandu- Both hold back, or withhold something of themselves. He seeks wisdom; she has obtained it. He waits to receive enlightenment and she waits to reveal it.

- III, Imperatris and Trump XIII- A mother is both loving and cruel, creation and destruction. She knows when to let her child go, when to step back. Trump 13 is La Mort, the ultimate letting go, but also the creation of something new from the soil.

- IIII, L'empereur and XIIII, Temperance- To be a real power, L'empereur must find balance. He knows when to show his authority and when to let matters lie. When to talk and when to listen.

- V, Le Pape and XV, Le Diable- Heaven vs Hell. Teaching vs. enslaving. Looking to God vs. seeking self-pleasure.

- VI, L'amoureu and XVI, La Maison Dieu- The lovers accept the possibility that it might all come crashing down someday. From above, Cupid's arrow or the hand of destruction?

- VII, Le Charior and XVII Letoille- To triumph, Le Charior must have known defeat, or at least the possibility of it, and has chosen hope instead. His horses mirror her jugs.

- VIII, Justice and XVIII, La Lune- Justice cuts through the confusion of La Lune. Acting consciously vs. the subconscious. Seeing clearly vs. seeing through a misty night.

- VIIII, L'ermite and XVIIII, Le Soleil- Light. The light that shows you the way to a higher truth vs. the simple light of happiness. Seeking solace in being alone vs. finding joy in being with another.

- X, La Roue de Fortun and XX, Jugement- We all have the chance to begin anew. The endless cycle of life. It's not over until it's over.


Just some of my initial ramblings. It was interesting to look at these pairs and see connections. Laying out the majors and the minors is something I do often, with any deck, but I've never done anything like this.
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swedishfish612  swedishfish612 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dancing_moon View Post
I'm starting tomorrow, with my Grimaud, and possibly lining up Piatnik and Vandenborre for comparison. I'm also going to start an 'analog' journal, jotting down my impressions on paper always helps me focus and articulate my thoughts more concisely.
One thing I meant to ask about is which deck everyone is using! I know we're "supposed" to use the Noblet with this course, but I'm so enamored with my Dodal that I must use it instead! I do plan on keeping my Noblet close at hand for comparisons, though.
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dancing_moon  dancing_moon is offline
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Personally, I don't have the Noblet and don't think I'm going to have it any time soon. That's why I'm using my Piatnik for now. It has some very curious details in it, and since it's one of my working decks, I think it's reasonable if I familiarize myself with it deeper.

You've got some really fascinating pairing ideas there, swedishfish. Can't wait to read what others have come up with.

I've left the Courts for 'desserts', going to lay them out today.

I got really fascinated by the idea of 'paired emblems' as depicted in medieval art. Had a look through the Notre Dame of Chartres (one of my favorite cathedrals ) and noted that many things are really represented in pairs there, paired by analogy or by contrast. The examples of the former would be months/Zodiac signs and the corresponding seasonal 'labors' associated with them, usually having something to do with wine-making; representations of Liberal Arts as women, with a prominent authority in this field depicted below each one (e.g. Pythagoreas for Music). The contrast could be seen in the statues of the apostles with the symbols of their martyrdom, standing on the heads of the pagan kings that had them executed. Another favorite 'contrast' motif would be paired images of Virtues vs Vices (haven't found this one in Chartres, but I might have missed something).

I decided to look at the same pairings by contrast, and here's what I got:

XI La Force - I Le Bateleur
(Brutal) force vs skill/craftsmanship

IIX Le Pendu - II La Papesse
A traitor vs a faithful

L'Arcane XIII - III L'Imperatrice
Death vs birth

XIIII Temperance - IIII L'Empereur
Flexibility vs rigidity

XV Le Diable - V Le Pape
Vice vs virtue

XVI La Maison Dieu - VI Lamoureux
Separation vs union

XVII Lestoile - VII Le Chariot
Will of heaven vs personal willpower

XVIII La Lune - VIII La Justice
Feeling vs reason

XVIIII Le Soleil - VIIII L'Hermite
Light vs darkness

XX Le Jugement - X Laroue De Fortune
Earned reward vs winning by chance

XXI Le Monde - Le Mat
The whole vs the nothingness
(This last pairing was omitted by JMD, but I had a look at it anyway).
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swedishfish612  swedishfish612 is offline
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dancing moon, I like your pairings! You broke it down so well, finding a simple keyword for each but it's so effective. Like you, I have the Piatnik and I think there's something so charming about it. After the Dodal, it's my second favorite TdM!
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dancing_moon  dancing_moon is offline
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Thanks, swedishfish. Again, those are just a few versions out of the many.

When I was laying out the Minors, I encountered an unexpected dilemma: which way is the upright for the ambiguous cards, like odd-number Swords or 3 of Coins? My Piatnik seems to disagree with Grimaud about several cards.
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