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Author Topic: Tarot origins in Ancient Egypt  (Read 80941 times)

Offline Bestekeni

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Re: Tarot origins in Ancient Egypt
« Reply #60 on: September 25, 2010, 09:42:50 am »
If I may --

One of the main historical facts from Alman's narrative is patently false.  When the Islamic empire was spreading, they actually did not force conversions... or even encourage them.  It did not behoove them to do so: Only non-Muslims could be taxed.  Furthermore, for hundreds of years, new Muslims-by-choice in the areas of the empire were actually given something of a second-class status, sort of an, "All right, if you insist..." Of course, this got turned on its head after a while due to people emphasizing Islam's egalitarian teachings.

The implication that Islam was forcefully stamping out native practices everywhere it went just doesn't hold water.  If anything, Islam would hardly be a world religion if it weren't for the Sufis who followed the army, encouraging conversion through public service and poetry.

What years are you suggesting for this alleged conference?  
Fedw diviner for Bes
Sat Bes her Hekatawy Alexandros (AUS)
Meryt Heru-wer her Amun-Ra her Bast

Re: Tarot origins in Ancient Egypt
« Reply #61 on: September 25, 2010, 03:09:18 pm »
I am sorry Imsetra, the 10 guardians of the gates you give are not such -they are in fact from chap 146 of the BoD  Budge or Faulkener. Your pics are actually from Budge and they are the 10 of the first 12 secret pylons  of the house of Osiris in Abydos. These number 21 and are as described and are indeed the major arcana. Only 12 of these are known to be  illustrated. The gates are found in full at 147 Budge BoD and also 144. chap 144 Faulkener only,  though he has full colour  illustrations of these 7 Gates.
Look please find a book shop -I do not mean to be rude. The books are in front of me.
If you think that looking at these 12 flat encouraged the unknown medieval worthy to create a deck form his texts ten fair enough. I think they  could have had some factor especially as he could put in 1-5 on a throne. The images he finally chose link with one or 2 cards but not generally. I have argued that he generally was trying to illustrate the textual descriptions, creating images from them and adding his own brush. These 12 images hardly fit the textual descriptions unless of course you lived in Egypt at that time!? Maybe one or 2 fit.

Re: Tarot origins in Ancient Egypt
« Reply #62 on: September 25, 2010, 03:21:56 pm »
Oh Bestekeni, You have misread what I have said entirely. I have presented the liberal Islamic tradition of scholarship and tolerance at this time in contradistinction to the Christian World which was the opposite. I do not understand how you got me at 180 degrees. It was Christianity at that time which was destructive and coercive and destroyed all that sought to worship  in the way of their choice. We are agreed here. It is history.  I think I remarked about the fear of Islam in the Christian world a different thing. The average man then might have an irrational fear of Islam ( just like today)

Re: Tarot origins in Ancient Egypt
« Reply #63 on: September 25, 2010, 03:40:14 pm »
Sehkteni - Thank you for folllowing the argument through with me. Many years ago  I did indeed dismiss the Occultist's comment as pseudo history but now not so and if I find the book one day I may get back up the line. But if the conference was located I doubt whether the agenda paper will ever be found. But it is one more piece towards the argument. The point is these conferences certainly existed and were common.

When young my friends and I preferred and English translation from a French because of its coherency but the Budge BoD still comes out tops. He is mainly criticised for spending up the money when he had 2 many words to translate. Modern translators are generally not that good which is why Budge and Faulkener are still going strong.
Remember their comments are based on a lifetime of going through 100s and hundreds of texts and books and like all experts when they agree ....

Yes my latest batch of comments are filling in the blanks to create a coherent picture.  The basic arguments are still structure and match


Offline ubenet

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Re: Tarot origins in Ancient Egypt
« Reply #64 on: September 25, 2010, 05:29:57 pm »
Quote from: Alman

Look please find a book shop -I do not mean to be rude. The books are in front of me.

if they're in front of you, could you, like, give us a hint of which ones they are? the suspense is killing me.
ubenetsenu - "two appear shining"
sat Sekhmet-Mut her Khonsu
meryt Wesir her Serqet-Aset

tarot and heka by request

Re: Tarot origins in Ancient Egypt
« Reply #65 on: September 25, 2010, 11:41:55 pm »
With all due respect, I don't think you really know what you actually need to be making this argument.  You just can't try making this case while pointing to conferences for which the only evidence is the tales of occultists whose names you don't remember.

It could be a thrilling speculative fiction or useful as a tool of self-growth (and I really do mean that, I encourage you to continue in this avenue), but unless your goal is to be confined to the same shelf as Erich Von Daenikan I'm afraid it's not going to work.

I can't continue this anymore, though, because I think it's all falling on deaf ears.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 pm by Setkheni_itw »
Son of Set and Wepwawet-Yinepu.
Beloved of Sekhmet-Hethert, Heru-Wer, and Aset-Serqet.

Offline Khesretitui

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Re: Tarot origins in Ancient Egypt
« Reply #66 on: September 27, 2010, 10:05:10 am »
In my opinion, the desire for scholarly rigor is one-sided in this argument, and this unfortunately prevents further intelligent debate. When Mr. Alman is willing to provide sources without condescending, without demanding his audience buy things, and without referring to vagaries, I will be willing to entertain his hypotheses. However, at this time there is insufficient evidence to justify my continued expenditure of energy on this thread. That said, I wish all parties the best in their studies.
"My Fathers Dispel Evil"

Sat Set her Ra-Heruakhety
Meryt Heru-wer her Yinepu-Wepwawet

Re: Tarot origins in Ancient Egypt
« Reply #67 on: September 27, 2010, 07:55:08 pm »
Ubenetsenu I am sorry about the confusion caused by my short hand the books I have used are the Book of the Dead by A E  Wallis Budge (big and fat with many extras) - BoD for short. And the British museum  Faulkener edition of the same book.

    The basics of all this argument lies in a few simple strategies.
They are that the basic structure the fact that the minor and major arcana are all present in the Abydos teaching as described with  4x14  + 21 +1.
    When I look a the devil card at 14 or 15 in the Egyptian pillars( and 14 -15 in  tarots) and the strength card which is at 9 in the Egyptian  pillars - I have given this as 11 in the modern Tarot  but according to  some early Tarots this is at 9 as well. (Sermones de Ludo  cum Aliis -at US Playing Cad Company) With the 4 original suit designations at Philae. The conclusion is inescapable -where else can you go with it.
     The how is a matter for obsessed scholars but you would certainly start looking in the old ramshackle Islamic libraries. But I have a good idea that it would make no difference, to some of you even, if these  Arabic translations of the Egyptian texts were produced tomorrow.

    The hymn to Ra is in the Old testament and  at least one more text and doubtless more, because I have never read the bible properly, but who would believe it unless they had to.  Some other texts also have found there way over to renaissance Italy but I not not going there for now.
    Look  one final word between sun blinded Christianity and moon blinded Islam and material Judaism there is another way. The point of H o N and others like myself is to find this way and follow it but one cannot make an omellete without breaking eggs so I am not always surprised at some reactions here.

Offline Sedjemes

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Re: Tarot origins in Ancient Egypt
« Reply #68 on: September 27, 2010, 08:11:28 pm »

I for one am very quite content in my understanding of Egyptian history and more than content in my certainty about religion and spirituality and even "mystery writings" that I neither accept, nor agree, with your "findings."

Sorry, but the "arguments" you offer here, and statements you have made about responses you have received, have not aided in changing my mind. I also read a lot of conference material from Egyptologists and religious scholars :)

But thanks for attempting to make a point. Interesting discussions are always welcome here, even if nobody has their minds changed along the way!

Oh-and...just a gentle reminder that even here we don't  approve of or engage in bashing any other faith, whether or not its practice and beliefs are ours. We respect Judaism, Islam, Christianity and a host of other spiritual paths and religions.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 pm by Sedjemes »
Khenmetaset ("Aset Gladdens")
Sedjemes ("She listens")
Daughter of Aset-Serqet, Meryt Ra her Sekhmet
Heri-Sesheta Aset-Serqet

Offline NiankhSekhmet

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Re: Tarot origins in Ancient Egypt
« Reply #69 on: September 27, 2010, 08:19:39 pm »
Em hotep Alman:

Citing a book's author and title is not enough. Since Budge is decidedly in the public domain, you meed to cite the publisher, the date the edition, and the page number from that specific edition.  ISBN's would be helpful, if there is one. The same goes for the Faulkner translation, there are many different editions of this book.  Much of the Book of the Dead is numbered with chapters, plates, passages, etc. Please be as specific as you can. The pages that you cited tell us little.  I personally have three individual editions - one Budge and Two by Faulkner of the Book of the Dead, and nothing that you have cited is specific enough to make a positive identifying reference.

The same holds true for Biblical citations. If you could please quote the chapter and verse and the particular version of the Bible (eg. King James, Annotated; Amplified, & etc.)  of the Bible, that would be ideal. This should not be difficult. Is there a reason why you don't want to provide these things for our discussion?

And as Kai Imakhu Sedjemes has said, many of us here either have come from or do a great deal of interfaith work with the very Faiths you have seen fit to make both inaccurate and very derogatory commentary about. These are public forums and I would ask you to please try to be respectful of others.


« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 pm by NiankhSekhmet »
Sat Sekhmet-Mut/HetHert
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Heri Seshta Sekhmet-Mut / HetHert

Re: Tarot origins in Ancient Egypt
« Reply #70 on: September 28, 2010, 01:49:47 am »

When you speak about this structure in which these 14 columns are located, are you referring to the stand alone shrine which was built by the Roman Emperor Trajan in around year 100?
Ne'sip - Thii - Mu - Pah - Ma'at
(Never Wander From The Truth)

Hk'hk - Mu - Th'n - Ib - Gh'ert - Netjer
(Keep Netjer In Your Heart Always)

Nin - Mesin'i - I'usi - Sa'ahu...
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Re: Tarot origins in Ancient Egypt
« Reply #71 on: September 30, 2010, 10:58:46 am »

    I am sorry you have difficulty dealing with my references. I am scarcely surprised  considering the number of years I have been wading through these.   Budges standard Book of the Dead was originally in 3 volumes. Now called ' The complete Edition '  Publishing information on the first page reads " An English Translation of the chapters hymns etc of the Theban recension, with introductory notes etc. "   ..Second edition revised and enlarged with 20 plates and 420 vignettes "
My book is 1969 - I have had it that long. - US publisher was Barnes and Noble  also 1969
The chapter numbers 144-150 are the easiest to use because they are  relatively easy to find in  other Books of the Dead.
If you get the hang of the chapters first remembering that they are one ritual. ( A very excellent ritual path working for its own sake) and finding Budges copious notes helpful. Good luck

    Insetra  -I think it is clear that the original  temple had 21 columns and 7 gates surrounding them. This is clear from the chapters. It should have been located in Abydos though I know of no temple complex which fits the bill. I don't know Trajans shrine or where it is. But it would be too late for the chaps of the BoD which are 1400 BC and earlier.

If 14 points were ever made they could be in 4 directions like rays or tombs spreading away from the temple. Maybe they were symbolic and used only as part of the teaching. Faulkener calls them mounds. I think regions or divisions are better though they sometimes seem like islands.

    I have a map Plan of work 1909-1911 ( Flinders Pietri??) which shows the old 1st dynasty tombs. They appear to show the tombs on the arc of a circle, their walls  pointing to a place not far away which has never been excavated. Also a series of burials which quite obviously are meant to look like a comet.
      Where the lines meet in a centre may be something very important.

Offline Sedjemes

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Re: Tarot origins in Ancient Egypt
« Reply #72 on: September 30, 2010, 12:43:58 pm »

the references as stated omit a bit. Since Faulkner has been cited I quote from the following Foreword by James Wasserman who provided the images for Faulkner's second revised edition 1998 of the Papyrus of Ani/The Book of Going Forth by Day (there are other Papyri for the BoD but Ani is the most complete). On pg 9 Mr Wasserman states that he had planned to "use Budge's translation with his key to hieroglyphics as guide" but that Dr. Ogden Goelet made clear that Budge's translation falls far short of modern standards.

Dr. Goelet comments regarding the so-called Saite recension on pg 141 in the Faulkner volume. He says that "one of the most unfortunate legacies of BUdge's work on the BoD was that he perpetuated Naville's notion of both a Theban and a  Saite recension of the text. ..Scribal work had already become quite erratic during 18th and 19th dynasties, the period of the Theban Recension, and it became very careless in the Saite period. The texts are badly garbled and frequently fail to match their accompnying illustrations, indicating the the scribes were working hastily and usually had poor comprehension of what they were copying."

Dr. Goelet divides the BoD into four major sections: Chapters 1-16: the deceased enters the tomb and descends to the underworld, and the corpse must regain its physical capabilities. Chapter 17-63: the components and mythological origin of most of the important places and gods of the beyond are explained, and the deceased is made to live again so as to arise reborn. Chapters 64-129: the decaeased travels across the sky as one of hte blessed dead, eventually appearing before Wesir and the judges. Chapters 130-189: Having been vindicated the deceeased assumes his power as one of the gods.

Dr. Goelet furnishes a very nice history of the appearance and evolution of the BoD texts and reminds that not all "chapters" (the chapter numberings being modern artifices and not havinb been used by the ancient scribes) always appeared in every coffin or tomb. Ani's own papyrus may have been ready-made in advance--Dr. Goelet points out examples where the name was just added in and not always properly.

Reference to an original temple is ambiguous--what original temple? At Abydos? Not so far. The earliest temple known to date is at Hierakonpolis/ancient Nekhen, and there is a very nice reproduction model of it which can be seen here at If the "chapters" of the BoD are being used to cite evidence of what an original temple might have looked like additional evidence would be interesting, as nowhere have the texts of the BoD ever been cited as evidence of physical structure.

Trajan's Kiosk is on Philae, and since Philae was mentioned as one source (which considering its current form was built in Ptolemaic times seems to put it far later. Ptolemaic reliefs and inscriptions are their own version of the language (late Egyptian and later, and, if I am correct, differ from Middle Egyptian in which many of the more familiar texts were written.

Here is a map of the First DYnasty tombs area where Petrie worked and more recently Gunter Dreyer has been working:

The reader can decide what shape if any those groupings have and whether any significance is felt :)

Khenmetaset ("Aset Gladdens")
Sedjemes ("She listens")
Daughter of Aset-Serqet, Meryt Ra her Sekhmet
Heri-Sesheta Aset-Serqet

Re: Tarot origins in Ancient Egypt
« Reply #73 on: September 30, 2010, 06:25:47 pm »
The map given is substantially the one I worked with. You can get it more into perspective on google Earth.
Philae is only important in this debate, so far,  for the 4 x 14 vignettes in the vestibule. I have been to Trajans kiosk and wasn't aware that it had 14 columns originally.   If it had, it could be significant - something to look at. The kiosk is mainly a ruin isn't it.

Offline Sedjemes

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Re: Tarot origins in Ancient Egypt
« Reply #74 on: September 30, 2010, 06:32:13 pm »
Trajan's kiosk, like the entire Philae complex of structures, was moved by Unesco.

The kiosk, which has 14 columns, was built that way by the Roman Emperor Trajan, not by the Ptolemies or even the ancient Egyptians. The Philae temple as it now stands was built by the Ptolemies, not by the ancient Egyptians.

Here is a photograph of the kiosk so people can see it:
Khenmetaset ("Aset Gladdens")
Sedjemes ("She listens")
Daughter of Aset-Serqet, Meryt Ra her Sekhmet
Heri-Sesheta Aset-Serqet


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