1. For the record, my primary interests are in Tarot history and historical iconography, not 21st-century spiritual practices. I may mock New Age values, attitudes, beliefs, and practices as superstitious nonsense, but I also mock the 15th-century Roman Catholic religion which informed the Tarot trump cycle. The difference is that the latter sensibilities are germane to any legitimate explanation of the origin and intended meaning of the trump cycle. What I object to is the naive imposition of modern views on Renaissance Italians, a practice that still tends to dominate discussions of Tarot. You seem to understand that, and to have some appreciation of texts like Brother John’s Tractatus, or Piscina’s treatise on the meaning of Tarot. That puts us on the same side of the historical divide, apart from those who prefer anachronistic historical fiction — IMHO.

  2. Wow… hello, Michael. Kind of honored to have had you drop by to read my ramblings. I appreciate the clarification regarding the focus of your interests. It’s true—there really is so much still to learn about Medieval and Renaissance life. So much 20th-century scholarship focused solely on art and riches—those obvious things that survived deterioration—and only represented a fraction of culture as well as a sliver of upper-class social structures. Add to that so many history “experts” (like Mâle) who erroneously deemed only sources in the “common” vulgate and languages to be of any relevance. Today we know better that universities and scholarship were more vibrant than thought throughout Europe (and geographic locations east), and that Greek and Latin were the required standard form of communication and scholastic writing. Reëvaluating texts and documents that were previously discarded or overlooked by 20th-century historians is opening up all kinds of new information and revelations…an exciting prospect for better defining a broader cultural picture too long ignored.
    Cheers to you.

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