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THE GHOST TRAIN:
Gated Spread Book 6 Explore Your Past & Create a New Future
By Tali Goodwin & Marcus Katz Copyright © Tali Goodwin & Marcus Katz, 2013 Published by Forge Press, Keswick All rights reserved.
WHAT OUR STUDENTS SAY … I am extremely thankful for these exercises. I feel like I could spend years contemplating these results and still not get to the bottom of the insight I have gained. C.C. What a great exercise! Thank you so much for sharing it. J. Thank you for this deeply moving experience. S. M. Very moving and effective. I cannot wait for the next gates! Y. There's been a subtle, but powerful shift in my perspective as I go about my usual day's work since the ride. L.
We have used real-life examples and authentic feedback throughout this series, anonymously, from our students in Tarot-Town. We thank them for their engagement with these experiences over the years.
About the Authors “I think I’ve mislaid the Forgotten Oracle.” Goodwin to Katz, Typical Conversation. Tali Goodwin is the co-author of award-winning and #1 best-selling Tarot books, including Around the Tarot in 78 Days, Tarot Face to Face, and Learning Lenormand. She is also a leading Tarot researcher and is credited with the discovery of A. E. Waite’s second tarot deck, kept secret for a century, published as Abiding in the Sanctuary. She has also uncovered and published the Original Lenormand deck, and with co-author Derek Bain, the original Golden Dawn Tarot images in A New Dawn for Tarot. Her research into the life of Pamela Colman-Smith with new photographs will be published as The Secrets of the Waite-Smith Tarot by Llewellyn Worldwide in Spring 2014. She is co-Director of Tarosophy Tarot Associations (Worldwide) and organizes the international tarot conventions, TarotCon. Marcus Katz is author of the ground-breaking Tarot book and teaching system, Tarosophy, and is the co-founder of Tarosophy Tarot Associations (Worldwide). In addition to Tarot books with Tali Goodwin, he is the author of The Magister, an 11-volume opus on the Western Esoteric Initiatory System, The Magician’s Kabbalah, and the forthcoming Path of the Seasons. He teaches students privately in the Crucible Club, available by application.
Contents WHAT OUR STUDENTS SAY … About the Authors Contents Preface What is the Tarot? What Are The Top 10 Wrong Ideas About Tarot? The Tarot & The Past Chapter 1:
Spooky Pipe Organ
Conclusion Bibliography Websites & Resources Kindle Tarot Books & Series
Preface Go back, reconnect with what was good, find the faces that cared and the people who helped. Swim in the old lake again, play on the old ball field, march in the old Fourth of July parade … It need not be lost. You can go back again … Dr. Edward Hallowell, Human Moments, p. 77 You are about to go on a journey and experience real magick. Grab a Tarot deck, and we are good to go! The purpose of Gated Spreads is to overturn the common use of Tarot cards as a means of “telling” the future, or providing a brief insight into our life and motivations – and hence our future possibilities. The teaching of Tarosophy encourages the use of Tarot as a divine language; one which connects us to the deeper world underneath the apparent one which we often take for granted. A gated spread requires you to take action in your life, from which change emerges naturally. This is not the empty promise of a feelgood self-help book, but a call to action – your action – to change your life through Tarot. Our Gated Spread experiences have been offered for several years to our private study groups, and now for the first time we provide them in handy self-study packages on Kindle. In each of these individual books, you can experience shamanism, relationship and romance insight, creativity, alchemy, and even delve into your ancestry, all using just a tarot deck.
We have also ensured that this is not a book of fictional examples that sound too good to be true. Our books are based only on real-life testing and the actual experience of real people like you, encountering magick often for the first time. We have taught these methods and run workshops and gated spread weeks for many years, and have hundreds of experiences which have constantly shaped what you are about to experience for yourself. This book is ideal for first time users of Tarot or the experienced reader who is looking to activate the tarot in their life. We have ensured that you are given the necessary instructions and clarifications (from our previous teaching and feedback given by students) to experience true magick in your time using this book. Before you begin, you may wish to join our free Facebook group if you have any questions about Tarot, and also download our free 22—page keyword guide to tarot cards and standard spreads from our site: www.mytarotcardmeanings.com
What is the Tarot? The tarot as most commonly recognized is a family of card decks, most often 78 cards divided into four suits of 14 cards (10 numbered cards and 4 Court cards for each suit) and 22 Major cards. There are presently about 1,000 different decks in print or circulation, and many more out-of-print, rare and collectable decks. Although it can be proven that the tarot was developed in the early 15th century, a lot of books still suggest that it was used by the “ancient ...” and then provide lists of the unproven, non-factual ideas which results in a conflation of tarot and those very ideas. The earliest names for the tarot are Italian. Originally the cards were called carte da trionfi (cards of the triumphs), but around 1530 A.D. (about 100 years after the origin of the cards) the word tarocchi began to be used to distinguish the tarot cards from a new game of triumphs or trumps then being played with ordinary playing cards. You are actually seeing in the cards some direct examples of the triumphs – the procession of floats common at festivals in Italy at the time – particularly in such cards as The Chariot and the Court cards. There is even a Christian tarot in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London; the cards were used to depict virtues, the liberal arts and sciences, and other aspirational notions from their earliest development. In fact, it could be said that the cards were originally educational or self-development tools, although that could also be debatable.
There is no evidence that the tarot were used by gypsies, originated in Egypt or were used for divination prior to the 1700s, despite popular occult lore that the cards have embodied ‘ancient teaching’ from time immemorial. It was not until a pseudo-connection between the Hebrew letters and the tarot was published in 1781 – by Comte de Mellet, in Antoine Court de Gebélin’s Le Monde Primitif – that esoteric interest began to appropriate the cards to embody occult teaching. The earliest list of the 22 cards which have become known as the Major Arcana is given in a sermon against their use by a monk writing in Latin around 1450-1470 A.D. This sermon is sometimes called the Steele Sermon as it belongs to the collection of Robert Steele. [This above section which we think is so important to teach is repeated in each booklet in this series, and is a short extract from Tarosophy, by Marcus Katz].
Which Tarot Deck is Best for This Gated Spread? Our students have used a range of decks for this experience, and of course the standard Waite-Smith Tarot is a favorite. However, students have used these decks for the Ghost Train with particularly good results: Deviant Moon The Thoth Tarot The Mary-El Tarot
The Gaian Tarot
We tend to suggest that students use “darker” or more “gothic” decks for this particular experience, particularly if they are doing it towards Samhain/Halloween.
When is the Best Time to Do This Gated Spread? The best time to perform this particular gated spread is the week prior to Samhain, Halloween, October 31st. However, as with all gated spreads, it can be conducted at any time over the year – you simply require a week block to devote to the working. As this particular working requires you to look at your past and future, particularly with regard to family, it is an interesting experience to use when you have experienced recent changes in family, or discovered something new about your heritage.
What Are The Top 10 Wrong Ideas About Tarot? There are many wrong ideas about the tarot that seem to be popular. We would like to present quickly some common myths about tarot that you may have heard already, and change your view!
1. The tarot did not originate from Egypt, the gypsies, the Templars, Atlantis or a secret order. 2. You do not need to be gifted or given your first tarot deck – you can simply buy a deck for yourself. 3. You do not have to keep your tarot in a silk bag or bag of any particular color. 4. You can let other people touch your cards if you choose. 5. There are no real ‘rules’ in tarot, but some generally agreed good ideas. 6. The keywords for cards are not set in stone; they can be modified depending on the deck, the reading and the question. However, there are basic concepts specific to each card in the deck, which form a basic language. 7. The cards are not evil – no more than any art or printed material is “evil”.
8. You do not have to be intuitive or gifted in some special way – you can learn, and develop your tarot skills in any way. 9. The ‘ancient Celtic Cross’ spread has not been used for centuries, and it is not particularly ancient and it is not Celtic. 10. There is no single right way to read tarot – we encourage every reader to discover their own unique voice.
The Tarot & The Past I’ve long since retired, my son’s moved away I called him up just the other day I said, I’d like to see you if you don’t mind He said, I’d love to dad if I could find the time You see, my new job’s a hassle and the kids got the flu but it’s sure nice talking to you And as I hung up the phone, it occurred to me He’d grown up just like me My boy was just like me. Harry Chapin In working with the tarot, we often concentrate on the potential for the future with little or no regard for the patterns of the past. A common spread such as the Celtic Cross has one position out of the ten available to look at the “past”. In this gated spread, we look at the patterns of the past and use the cards to divine them deeply, providing us insight that in turn leads to a better future. We do this by boarding the ghost train – a series of spreads you will carry out over about a week.
Select Your Carriage Card As you climb into your carriage on the Ghost Train, you see that your car has a particular image of a Tarot card on the side. Pick a number from the links below and see which card is your carriage card. The card you select will call you to recognize one key element of your life during the week ahead. These are selected from the Major cards of the Tarot – simply pick ONE number below to view your card on YouTube, selected by the Seer of Tarosophy Towers. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14
Note: If for any reason you cannot view your video card, please simply select out at random one of the 22 Major cards from your Tarot deck, whilst contemplating “scary journeys”.
Illustration. Ghost Train.
Ghost Train: Gate 1 Carriage Card Take a whole day to think about your carriage card. What is your Carriage Card? What does that card mean to you in terms of a resource to carry you through a difficult or challenging time? How does the energy or lesson(s) pictured by your Carriage Card assist you in your life? It may be that the thing we fear holds the clues to our resolve in facing the challenges and changes of life – the various turns in the ghost train. Take a moment to look up the keywords of that card in our free guide or online and consider what that means to you in terms of “facing the fear and doing it anyway”. Here are some examples of how students saw their carriage cards: My Carriage Card is the Hanged Man. "You are called to recognize A Call to your Highest Values and must learn To Live your values" Well, synchronicity seems to be the norm when working with the Tarot. I know this. I've known this from the beginning and still it delights me every time it happens.
I am emerging (I think) from a deep, long descent and all signs (and I do mean signs) are pointing to transformation of what was the most difficult challenge of my life. As I layered on survival strategies, deal with aging parents, and new grandchildren, I find myself so caught up in all of it that carving out the time and space for cultivating my soul has left me feeling starved. Then this wonderful reminder shows up, 2 days after I completed a 3 day solo retreat, to take the time. Do some headstands, get a new perspective so that I can remember, recover, my values, take time to align my life with them as I reexamine all the busyness and by at choice with the activities I do and make sure they are in alignment with, or I do them in alignment with, my higher values. And most importantly, at this time in my life, identify exactly what my higher values are. The Hanging Man will remind me, when faced with my fears, to pause, breath, refrain from reacting, remember who I am (my core values) before responding. --My Carriage Card is the Hermit.
The Hermit energy gives me the ability to withdraw instead of reacting and shine a light to see and understand all sides and possibilities. It enables me to stand to the side and observe instead of being involved, especially emotionally. Gathering and processing information to eventually apply creative problem solving. The Hermit, my ability to Just Be.
Ghost Train: Gate 2 Sepia Photographs After at least one full day contemplating your Carriage Card, the next Gate in our Ghost Train is when the carriages start up and we all enter into the darkness together ... the lights dim, the train clatters and clunks, and we are soon engulfed by the acrid smell of smoke and old dust. And then, and then ... we turn a corner and to our left an eerie scene unfolds, in sepia lights; an old Victorian parlor, with photographs on a mantelpiece, and a piano. All of a sudden, the piano starts to play a haunting tune, and the photographs come to life ... all speaking in whispers - they have something to tell us if only we can hear them... To enter this Gate on our journey together, firstly, you will need to list a number (1-10 at most) of your ancestors. These are those family members who are no longer with you. If you can, find photographs of each. Otherwise, simply make a small card or piece of paper with their name written upon it. If you do not know any family ancestors, you can simply "GRANDMOTHER", etc. as you wish.
This is a personal working, and you need not share any of what follows unless you find it supportive and helpful. Our Gated Spread experiences often go deeper than people imagine, so please hold tight onto the handles at all time. I (Marcus) originally used a photograph of part of my family dating back to the 1880's. As it was a photograph of seven brothers – one of whom was my great grandfather, I copied the photo and split it up into seven images (see photograph later of the full layout). Further instructions for this gate will follow for the next day in the section below, follow it when you've had time to locate some photos or make named cards - you can even use old letters, jewellery, gifts, etc. that connect you to those ancestors. In each of these experiences, we provide the basic template and encourage our students to use their own creativity, skill, intuition or background to personalize their experience along the way.
Assign the Court Cards To complete Gate 2, remove all the 16 Court Cards from your chosen deck and place at least one against each of the photographs or name-cards you have created for the ancestors you have chosen. Select them based on your knowledge of these people, your intuition, allow your hands to automatically draw certain cards together with their appropriate ancestor photo, name-card or item. Open yourself entirely to the process. Leave the remaining Court Cards to one side.
Ghost Train: Gate 3 Spooky Pipe Organ As the carriage rounds another bend and another day of this experience, with the memory of those photographs still in our hearts and minds, we see a ghastly organist playing an ancient pipe organ, with discordant sounds echoing in the dark as we plummet further into the tunnels of the Ghost Train... You may also note your dreams at this time, as often they provide a channel for communication with long-forgotten aspects of our personal past as we work through it in this experience. Take your Tarot deck, minus your Carriage Card and minus the Court Cards - all of which you have removed already to complete Gate 2. Now shuffle the deck and then go through it and choose/select out the cards which to you seem to embody the darker side of life, the mistakes, regrets and fears in the night. These are the pipes of the pipe organ, echoing discordantly in our lives. We want you to select out the ‘scary’ cards. Whether you choose one card or many, now fan out the spread of those cards (or just the one card) in front of the layout of your selected Court Cards and ancestor items. Let these sit for a day, and again, see if you dream differently.
Make a note of how these cards reflect any regrets and fears that you have personally experienced in your life. The more honest you can be here, the more powerful the next gate will be for you. In our next gate for the next day we will start to really see how a Gated Spread works, with our first real-world activity bridging two gates. Here is an example of chosen ‘negative’ cards: XVI The Tower - many total breaks in my life (now striving to overcome this and establish/nurture continuity). 3 of Swords - heartbreak, emotional turmoil, tendency to fix myself onto what turns out to be "lost causes". 9 of Swords - disappointment, hardness on self and others, lack of mercy. 7 of Cups: distraction by following too many choices at once. 10 of Wands: overworking, burn-out, fruitless commitment.
Ghost Train: Gate 4 Planchette With the shivers of the spooky pipe organ music still running down our spines, the Ghost Train picks up speed and careers around the next dark turn. In the carriages ahead of us and behind us we can hear the shrieks and gasps of our fellow companions as the Train hurls us into the darkness ... then suddenly we emerge into a huge space, dimly lit, full of cobwebs brushing on our faces, candles burning and in the centre we see a table surrounded by Victorian gentleman and women - at least, we can tell this from their clothes as their bodies have long since turned into skeletons. They are holding a séance, and we see that above them hovers some spectral presence. A ghost of times past, an ancient voice, a call to our own ancestors. It is pointing at us - asking us something, demanding something ... but what? For this Gate, when you have a moment to consider, take your carriage card and place your finger on it. This is best experienced in the evening of about the fifth or sixth day of the experience. Allow it to move so it points to all (or any, or the one) "Regret & Mistake" cards. Gaze at your Ancestor cards. Allow the Carriage Card to stop when it is pointing to a "Regret and Mistake" card which seems most powerful to you at this time.
Now consider the Carriage Card, the "Regret and Mistake" card, and the Ancestor(s) card you were gazing at when the Carriage Card stopped. Consider what this is asking you to do on this night or the days following in your life. How is the Carriage Card to carry you through resolving that regret, fear, mistake, negativity shown by the "R&M" Card? Does that relate to your Ancestry? Perhaps it may simply be a case of sitting down for five minutes and remembering good times, honoring a memory. Perhaps you need to write an email, a letter, go see someone. Perhaps you need to do something to celebrate your living family. Or something else entirely unexpected. Let the cards talk to you.
Illustration. The Ghost Train Layout.
The final Gate should take place the following day. It will require that you have done this activity or at least commenced it, from Gate 4. The purpose and construction (and uniqueness) of Gated Spreads is that they are woven into real-life activities. One student reported intense dreams during this part of the experience; “I had a very strange dream about talking to a ghost which seemed like a younger version of myself. She was on my patio outside the kitchen window and wanted to be let in. I refused but talked to her through the half open window”.
Ghost Train: Gate 5 Emerging Whole Here we arrive at our final Gate in the Ghost Train, following your Séance Night. On our train, we emerge through a forest scene, a long path about which the trees are closed. In those wilds we see dark shapes, moving shadows, bats flitting, red eyes balefully glaring ... all the primitive horrors and dangers woven in amidst the webs of spiders ... But we hold on fast because ahead of us we see a door opening, the end of the ride. Outside, we know our friends and family are waiting for us, those who haven't taken this ride, waiting for us to share in other amusements and pastimes of the fair. So here's GATE 5: Emerging Whole Take the rest of the deck (from which we have taken out the Carriage Card, Court Cards and "regret and mistake" cards) and shuffle them whilst considering your family, friends, colleagues and co-workers. And consider the children, and future generations, those of whom you are an ancestor - or will become one.
Consider particularly the action you took at the previous gate. You are in a place - life - where you can do things, where you can affect the outcome of the world. This is your living situation. What did you do to respond to the voices of the past? What did you do? What can you do?
Now take THREE cards - the LEGACY CARDS, from the deck, and lay them out in front of the CARRIAGE CARD. These three cards give you your Inheritance, Present Situation and Legacy to those who follow you. Here’s the experience of one student: Inheritance: 6 of Water (6 of Cups). Sweet card for this position shows a circle of women standing in the ocean in a sharing ceremony with a playful sea otter watching. I feel held in love and celebrated by my ancestors, they are supporting me and my inheritance is this open-hearted warm embracing support. Present situation: 3 of Water (3 of Cups) shows 3 otters again playing in the ocean. I'm seeking, finding joy with others, again, another circle. Legacy: 8 of Fire (8 of Wands): meteor shower, balls of light streaking towards the Earth. My legacy? I guess it's no more holding back, hiding from the sun. Time to magnetize my visions into reality, break the inherited tendencies to conform and adapt and pass that freedom on to my descendants. And with those lessons in mind, now connecting all the past with all the future, our little carriage rolls out into the light, beyond the most primitive fears, the thrills and spills, of the Ghost Train ...
Conclusion “Each breath the first, the last, the only breath available, to carry us beyond our forgetfulness into the scintillating center of the living truth. May all beings live with death over their left shoulder and kindness in the center of their heart. May all beings be free from suffering. May all beings know the great good fortune of their great nature. May all beings be at peace.” Dying Contemplation, from A Year to Live, pp. 65-6 The Ghost Train experience allows us to contemplate the passage of time, and our own heritage. We can use the Tarot in many different ways to explore the past, which in turn creates a new potential for the future. In working with others, we can also use aspects of the Ghost Train to allow them to explore their family relationships. We trust during this week-long taster experience you have been given a new angle on your Tarot, and look forward to welcoming you on our other Gated Spreads in the future. You can share your experiences in our social site, Tarot-Town, and ask questions. The site is free with membership of your national Tarot Association, with many other member benefits.
Bibliography Katz, M. Tarosophy. Chang Mai: Salamander & Sons, 2012. Katz, M. & Goodwin, T. Around the Tarot in 78 Days. Woodbury: Llewellyn, 2012. Katz, M. & Goodwin, T. Tarot Flip. Forge Press, 2012. Hallowell, E. Human Moments: How to find meaning and love in your everyday life. London: Thorsons, 2001. Levine, S. A Year To Live: How to Live This Year as if it Were Your Last. London: Thorsons, 1997. Waite, A. E. Pictorial Key to the Tarot. London: Rider, 1974.
Websites & Resources If you enjoy new learning, and want many more ways to use your Tarot deck, we encourage you to explore our websites. You are also welcome to join us in your national Tarosophy Tarot Association, where as a member you will instantly receive thousands of pages of materials, and tarot video courses for every level. We look forward to seeing you soon on your Tarot journey!
Tarosophy Tarot Associations http://www.tarotassociation.net Tarot Professionals Facebook Group http://www.facebook.com/groups/tarotprofessionals Free Tarot Card Meanings & Spreads http://www.mytarotcardmeanings.com Hekademia Tarot Course http://www.tarosophyuniversity.com Tarot Town Social Network http://www.tarot-town.com Tarosophy by Marcus Katz http://www.tarosophy.com The Tarot Speakeasy Blog http://www.tarotspeakeasy.com Tarot Book Club
http://www.tarotbookclub.com The Tarot Review http://www.thetarotreview.com TarotCon International Tarot Conventions http://www.tarotconvention.com Fortune-Telling Laws http://www.fortunetellinglaws.com The Original Lenormand Deck http://www.originallenormand.com Learning Lenormand http://www.learninglenormand.com
Kindle Tarot Books & Series Check out all our other books and series for original and exciting ways in which you can use a deck of tarot cards to change your life.
Gated Spreads Series Set 1 Book 1: The Tarot Shaman (Contact Your Animal Spirit) Book 2: Gates of Valentine (Love & Relationships) Book 3: The Resurrection Engine (Change Your Life) Set 2 Book 4: Palace of the Phoenix (Alchemy) Book 5: Garden of Creation (Creativity & Inspiration) Book 6: Ghost Train (Explore Your Past) Set 3 Coming Soon – Enter the Temple of the Gods.
Tarosophy KickStart Series Volume I. Book I: Tarot Flip - Reading Tarot Straight from the Box Book II: Tarot Twist – 78 New Spreads and Methods [paperback] Book III: Tarot Inspire – Tarot for a Spiritual Life
Tarot Life Series Tarot Life: A revolutionary method to change your life in 12 Kindle pamphlets. 1. Discover Your Destiny 2. Remove The Blocks 3. Make Decisions Better 4. Enter the Flow 5. Ride the Lion 6. Connect to Service 7. Find Equality 8. Die To Your Self 9. Entering Unity 10. Becoming the Real 11. Your Keys to Freedom 12. The Depth of Divinity
Also in Print and Kindle Tarosophy: A ground-breaking book packed with original ideas.
Around the Tarot in 78 Days: The ideal beginner book, a three-month course through every card. An award-winning book, recognized by the COVR New Age Industry Award for Best Divination Book 2013.
Tarot Face to Face: Take your tarot out of the box and into life!
The Secrets of the Waite-Smith Tarot: Learn the real meanings of the world’s most popular tarot deck [available Spring 2014, pub. Llewellyn Worldwide].
Tarot Turn Vol. 1 - 3: A massive crowd-sourced reference guide to all 12,200 possible combinations of reversed Tarot card pairs.