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Tarot and Quotes — Part 1

June 24, 2010

A couple of months ago in a blog post titled Kahlil Gibran, I said:

Whenever I read something of profound wisdom, I try to relate it to a Tarot card and I’m usually successful in that effort. (See, for example, my previous post, Tarot and Desiderata.) In doing so, I find more depth in what I’m reading and I find more depth in the cards as well.

Today I’m returning to that theme, but with a twist.  My friend Donnaleigh mentioned recently that she is a “quotes hound,” which reminded me that I too love great quotes.  And when I come across a new one, I often relate it to a Tarot card, so I thought I’d share some of those associations with you all.  I’ve mentioned a few examples from time to time in my blog, such as in my discussion of the Four of Cups where I posted the following quote, but I have a lot more.

“Boredom is your ‘fuller life’ calling you, and your fear of hearing that call.” — Gary Zukav, The Heart of the Soul: Emotional Awareness.

I have at least one quote per Major Arcana card, but not for all the Minors, so I’ll start with the Majors.  Actually, I have so many for the Majors, I decided to divide them up into three posts, with this one starting with Keys 0 through 7.

So here, now, is a collection of quotes for Tarot cards.  But first, here is one for doing Tarot readings in general:

“The eyes only see what the mind is prepared to comprehend.” — Henri Bergson

The Fool:
“Every man is a divinity in disguise, a god playing the fool.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
“We must walk consciously only part way toward our goal, and then leap in the dark to our success.” — Henry David Thoreau
“All growth is a leap in the dark, a spontaneous unpremeditated act without benefit of experience.” — Henry Miller
“You will either step forward into growth or you will step back into safety.” — Abraham Maslow
“He who asks is a fool for five minutes, but he who does not ask remains a fool forever.” – Chinese proverb
“Don’t be afraid to take a big step. You can’t cross a chasm in two small jumps.” — David Lloyd George
“A ship is safe in harbor, but that is not what a ship is for.” — Thomas Aquinas
The Magician:
“What we have to learn to do, we learn by doing.” — Aristotle
“In everything natural there is something marvelous.” — Aristotle
“He that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools.” — Confucius
“Maybe science is just magic with delusions of lack of grandeur.” — Peter David
“Miracles arise from a miraculous state of mind, or a state of miracle-readiness.” — from A Course in Miracles
“Our duty, as men and women, is to proceed as if limits to our ability did not exist. We are collaborators in creation.” — Pierre Teilhard De Chardin
The High Priestess:
“The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant.  We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.” — Albert Einstein
“The only tyrant I accept in this world is the still voice within.” — Mahatma Gandhi
“They understand but a little who understand only what can be explained.” — Marie Ebner-Eschenbach
The Empress:
“Earth and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountain and the sea, are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books.” — John Lubbock
“You may drive out Nature with a pitchfork, yet she’ll be constantly running back.”— Horace
“Nature, to be commanded, must be obeyed.” — Francis Bacon
“Man masters Nature not by force but by understanding.” — Jacob Bronsowski
“Nature’s instructions are always slow, those of men are generally premature.” — Jean-Baptiste Rousseau
“Chaos often breeds life, when order breeds habit.” — Henry Adams
The Emperor:
“A man who does not lose his reason over certain things has none to lose.” — Gotthold Ephraim Lessing
“Order marches with weighty and measured strides; disorder is always in a hurry.” — Napoleon I
The Hierophant:
“The mediocre teacher tells.  The good teacher explains.  The superior teacher demonstrates.  The great teacher inspires.” — William Arthur Ward
“The real teacher, as every true teacher explains, is within.” – Rick Fields (Chop Wood, Carry Water)
“Tis education forms the common mind; just as the twig is bent, the tree’s inclined.” — Alexander Pope
“Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful.” — Seneca
“I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use.” — Galileo Galilei
“God has no boundaries, including those of religion.” — Reb Yakov Leib HaKohain
The Lovers:
“Love is the difficult realization that something other than oneself is real.” — Iris Murdoch
“None love, but they who wish to love.” — Jean Baptiste Racine
“Love rests on no foundation. It is an endless ocean, with no beginning or end.” – Rumi
The Chariot:
“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” — Chinese proverb
“Valor lies just halfway between rashness and cowardice.” — Cervantes
“Success is counted sweetest by those who ne’er succeed.” — Emily Dickinson

I hope these quotes give you all some food for thought about the meanings of the cards that I have associated with them. Thinking about what cards you would associate with them is a great exercise too.

.

Addendum:

For more Tarot & Quotes, see:

https://jamesricklef.wordpress.com/2010/06/26/tarot-and-quotes-part-2/

https://jamesricklef.wordpress.com/2010/06/28/tarot-and-quotes-part-3/

https://jamesricklef.wordpress.com/2010/08/02/tarot-and-quotes-part-4/

 

So here, now, is a collection of quotes for Tarot cards.  But first, here is one for doing Tarot readings in general:

“The eyes only see what the mind is prepared to comprehend.” — Henri Bergson

The Fool:

“Every man is a divinity in disguise, a god playing the fool.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

“We must walk consciously only part way toward our goal, and then leap in the dark to our success.” — Henry David Thoreau

“All growth is a leap in the dark, a spontaneous unpremeditated act without benefit of experience.” — Henry Miller

“You will either step forward into growth or you will step back into safety.” — Abraham Maslow

“He who asks is a fool for five minutes, but he who does not ask remains a fool forever.” – Chinese proverb

“Don’t be afraid to take a big step. You can’t cross a chasm in two small jumps.” — David Lloyd George

“A ship is safe in harbor, but that is not what a ship is for.” — Thomas Aquinas

The Magician:

“What we have to learn to do, we learn by doing.” — Aristotle

“In everything natural there is something marvelous.” — Aristotle

“He that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools.” — Confucius

“Maybe science is just magic with delusions of lack of grandeur.” — Peter David

“Miracles arise from a miraculous state of mind, or a state of miracle-readiness.” — from A Course in Miracles.

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8 Comments
  1. I swear, James, this needs to be in a book. This is to me what playboy is to some, lol. Really great stuff here, and I like to read each one in little luvin’ spoonfuls, because there are also great wisdoms in each quote that we can ascribe to that card in future readings.

    Heck, even if this never gets into a published book, I have enough print-outs of your blogs to make a James Ricklef Greatest Hits novel.

    This particular quote (and even connected to this very card) has been on my mind lately with the crisis in the Gulf:
    “Nature, to be commanded, must be obeyed.” — Francis Bacon

    Thanks for writing these; they are superb. Just superb. (Thanks for the mention, too).

    I’m so happy you’re actively blogging.

    • Glad you enjoyed the quotes, Donnaleigh. There will be more in future posts.
      As for a book, it’s an intriguing idea, but I don’t think I have nearly enough quotes for a book … yet 😀
      Best,
      James

  2. Very very cool. Your blog posts and visions for Tarot are always intriguing and stimulating!
    You can also play this as a game in a Tarot class. Toss out a quote and then see if you can relate it to a Tarot card, or a pair of cards. When you have a pair, then poof, you’ve got a reading!

  3. Harper permalink

    Ah James, this made my morning! I love quotes but I’ve never associated them with the cards. Now thats all changed! 😎 I think Donnaleigh is right! This needs to be in a book!

  4. Happy to make your morning, Harper! 😀
    Keep your eye on this blog for more quotes in the future.
    Best,
    James

  5. Great post James. Associations seems to be the hot topic for the Tarot. I’ve read two other blogs relating to this subject. Yours, however, is the first on quotes. This is definitely a good learning curve for the Tarot.

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