One of my favorite beginning Tarot books and one that I recommend to all my Tarot students is Tarot Plain and Simple by Anthony Louis. So I was delighted when I learned awhile back that he had written an advanced level book entitled: Tarot Beyond the Basics and an excellent book it is.
It’s ideal for someone who’s been studying Tarot for awhile and is interested in taking his or her skills to the next level – someone looking to advance their tarot skills toward becoming a professional reader – or simply gaining a deeper understanding of the cards. Louis delves into such topics as reversals, astrology, number symbolism (the Kabbalah, the Tetractys), using your intuition, the elements and more.
The book is broken down into the nine chapters:
One: Reflections on the Celtic Cross
Two: Astrology 101 for Tarot Readers
Three: The Topsy-Turvy World of Tarot Reversals
Four: The Role of Intuition in Divination
Five: Number Symbolism and the Tarot
Six: The Four Elements
Seven: The Elemental Personalities of the Court Cards
Eight: The Major Arcana
Nine: The Anatomy of the Four Suits
I admit that my knowledge a tad lacking when it comes to Astrology (though it’s getting better!) so I found that particular chapter especially helpful and find myself returning to it again and again. Louis explains Tarot and astrology in a clear, concise and easy-to-understand manner and provides detailed example card readings to help the readers understand how to incorporate the information in a reading.
He also goes really in-depth with the elements and elemental dignities, a system that I personally use in my own readings. Even so, there was plenty for me to learn in this chapter and I walked away with an even deeper understanding of the history and practical usage of this system.
The book is peppered with a plethora of useful charts, tables, and card images to help make the topics even more understandable and approachable. These illustrations not only help to simplify the information and make it approachable, but serve as invaluable references to return to later on.
The Appendices are also a gold mine of information and contain the following topics:
Appendix A: Keywords for the Suit Cards
Appendix B: Waite’s Original Conception of the Celtic Cross
Appendix C: Elements, Timing, Pips and Court Cards
If you would like to gain a deeper understanding of astrology, numerology, the elements and how they relate to Tarot, then you can’t go wrong with Tarot Beyond the Basics. I feel that this book is an essential addition to any tarot reader’s library, regardless of skill level. This is definitely a book that one doesn’t read through once and it has proven an invaluable resource in my own work.
You’ll no doubt finding yourself returning to this treasure again and again.
You can check out the book HERE