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The Labyrinth Tarot
A product by Lo Scarabeo The Labyrinth Tarot

By: Lo Scarabeo
Imprint: Llewellyn
Specs: Boxed Deck | 9780738732596
English | 3 x 5 x 1 IN
Pub Date: January 2012
Price: $22.95 US,  $26.50 CAN
In Stock? Yes, ready to ship
Qty:

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Summary

The Labyrinth Tarot takes the reader on a journey, as all labyrinths do. The theme is subtle, woven symbolically throughout the deck by way of evocative imagery, astrological symbols, Hebrew letters, and other symbols. While the feel is esoteric and mysterious, the accompanying booklet provides clear, practical interpretations.

 In-Depth Review

There are two main ways to approach a new deck. One is to flip through the images and see what your immediate response is. The other is to make an analytical overview to determine the system and intent of the creator. Most do both, beginning with the flip through. 

Your initial flip through of The Labyrinth Tarot will bring a roller coaster of reactions. The monochromatic art is very nicely rendered and quite mysterious and intriguing. Your journey through the Major Arcana will be stunning. The Minor Arcana will challenge you and bring your reading abilities to a new level.

Marseilles-style decks are ones where the Minor Arcana cards are not illustrated, but are instead true pips. They have only the suit designators on them. Popular in Europe, not many American readers use Marseilles-style decks—yet. That is rapidly changing as an increasing number of teachers are offing more classes on the subject. This is your chance to be on the vanguard of Tarot practice. Alternatively, you can use just the magnificenly illustrated Major Arcana, a technique that works well with a variety of spreads or in conjunction with other decks. One of the wonderful things about Tarot is that there is room for creativity.

Being a Marseilles-style deck you will notice some minor differences with the Major Arcana when compared to the Rider-Waite-Smith deck. Strength is numbered 11 and Justice is 8, the opposite to what most Americans are used to. In addition, the Fool is not numbered 0, but is completely unnumbered. Judgement is numbered 20, as usual, but the World is numbered 22, which is not usual, even in Marseilles decks. This numbering and sequence is not unheard of, but it is unusual. The theory is that the Fool exists between Judgement, 20, and the World, 22. But it is not 21. Nothing is 21. And the Fool is nothing. This may seem odd  but mystics see it as esoteric and meaningful. 

The Majors have between 4 and 6 small symbols on them, including two astrological symbols (a planet and a sign) and a Hebrew letter. Another interesting difference from RWS-style decks is in those decks the High Priestess and Hierophant are usually shown between pillars. In this, The Labyrinth Tarot, the Magician, Empress, Emperor, and High Priest (Hierophant) are shown between pillars, but the High Priestess is not.

The court cards have an interesting difference as well. In place of Pages are Jacks, which in this deck are all female. The suits lean toward a certain color palette (red, yellow, blue, and green), so much so that you can tell the suits in a spread simply by looking at the color.

The included booklet gives short, straightforward interpretations. For example, the 3 of Cups: Emotional satisfaction. Success in love, pleasurable sexuality, good luck, victory and talent. Happiness. A few spreads are included, too.

A labyrinth is a deceptively simple creation. A single line creates a path that goes to the center, the heart of the space. That same line leads one on the only way out. The journey to the center and the journey out of the center are technically the same. But they are not. They are not because the walker is different. Once they make their way to the middle, they are changed. The person who walks out is not the same as the one who walked in. This deck is not a typical theme-deck. It does not feature pictures of labyrinths. Rather, each card is a labyrinth. If you enter it or them and reach the center, you will come away changed.

This deck would be most appealing to people interested in decks from the Marseille tradition and in esoteric symbolism, particularly those who favor delicate, subtle art and decks that stretch their spiritual and intellectual muscles.

Deck Attributes

Name of deckThe Labyrinth Tarot
Publisher: Lo Scarabeo
EAN: 9780738732596
Creator’s name: Luis Royo
Brief biography of creator: Born in Olalla, Spain, in 1954, Royo is known for painting fantasy worlds and mechanical life forms, as well as dark, apocalyptic imagery that is often quite sensual. He became fasincated with comics in the late 1970s and has gone on to work for Heavy Metal magazine. In 1998 he released The Black Tarot. In 2004 he published The Labyrinth: Tarot. In 2009 he published the book Dead Moon.
Artist’s name:  Luis Royo
Name of accompanying bookletThe Labyrinth Tarot
Number of pages of booklet: 93, 21 in English
Author of booklet: Luis Royo
Available in a boxed kit?: No
Magical Uses: None
Reading Uses: General
Artistic Style: Surreal
Tarot, Divination Deck, Other: Tarot, Marseilles Tradition
Does it follow Rider-Waite-Smith Standard?: No, it is Marseilles tradition
Does it have extra cards? If yes, what are they?: No
Does it have alternate names for Major Arcana cards?: No alternate names, just alternate numbering: Fool is unnumbered, Justice is 8, Strength is 11, The World is 22.
Does it have alternate names for Minor Arcana suits?: No
Does it have alternate names for the Court Cards?: Page is called Jack.
Book suggestions for Tarot beginners and this deck: Any book on the Marseilles tradition.
Book suggestions for experienced Tarot users and this deck: Any book on the Marseilles tradition.

 



Of the many esoteric subjects studied by ceremonial magicians, alchemy is often considered one of the hardest and most arcane, while the tarot is thought to be one of the most accessible and "hands-on." Historically the language of alchemy, with its inscrutable riddles and metaphor, has baffled many students, while the images of the tarot are more... read this article
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