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Holistic Tarot: An Integrative Approach to Using Tarot for Personal Growth
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Holistic Tarot: An Integrative Approach to Using Tarot for Personal Growth

4.45  ·  Rating details ·  575 ratings  ·  73 reviews
Designed for beginning as well as experienced tarot readers, Holistic Tarot offers a fresh and easy-to-follow approach to the use of the tarot deck for tapping into subconscious knowledge and creativity. The tarot deck has been used as a divination tool for more than two centuries; while the tarot is still most commonly thought of as "fortune telling," the true power of th ...more
Paperback, 896 pages
Published January 6th 2015 by North Atlantic Books
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Average rating 4.45  · 
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May 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing
When I met Benebell she told me not to buy this book, she told me that as an experienced tarot reader I didn't really need her book. But after spending some time with her and knowing how she teaches I couldn't not buy the book.

Oh my... I'm so glad I didn't listen to her. This is hands down the best Tarot book I've ever read. You really don't need any other book besides this one whether you are a beginner or, like me, are an experienced reader. As I've been reading I've added a handful of ideas f
Dec 23, 2016 rated it did not like it
Shelves: tarot
Quotes from the first chapter:

" I do not support fortunetelling and I do not believe in fortunetelling. My approach to tarot is not predictive. It is analytic."

"The Christian Bible warns against seeking out soothsayers for divination.2 Divination here refers to fortune-telling, speaking with certainty about a person’s future, speaking with certainty about the will of the higher powers, and making the presumption that a human could know what the higher powers know. By that definition, I am agains
Mar 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: tarot, divination
[4.5 stars] This is a book intended for tarot readers at all levels of experience, beginner to advanced, and it meets that goal. As you'd expect, the bulk of the book covers beginner material, with meaty chapters on basic card meanings and layouts, The latter has good discussion of a variety of spreads, including standards like the Three-Card Spread and the Celtic Cross (of course!), but there is also good coverage of uncommon spreads.

So Wen's book covers the basics, but with almost 900 pages to
Tabitha Chamberlain
Oct 02, 2017 rated it it was ok
i know this has stunningly great reviews, but my own personal opinion that given the amount of money and the thickness of the book it's lackluster. there's a lot of great information for someone just starting out or for someone restarting their tarot journey, but for those that have been reading for years...meh is the best i can say.

it will give you an interesting new take on a few things. most of it though is simply redundant to the point of boring in other places and yet some are completely p
Pippi Bluestocking
Nov 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: phil-psych-spir
A Leviathan.

Approaches the tarot as I do: an elaborate psychological tool for those of imaginative minds.

Packed with information from everywhere and the author's own splendid suggestions.

This book has everything you will ever need.
Jun 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely the best, most comprehensive tarot book I've ever read--and I've read OODLES of tarot books. If you're anywhere in your tarot journey, you NEED this book--including beginners! If you're just starting out, this book would take you years into your journey.
I purchased the eBook, and have had no problems with it, but I'll likely purchase a print copy as well, because I'm sure I"m to use this book as a reference book over and over.
Have you ever read a book and just felt an instant kinship with the author? That was me while reading Holistic Tarot. With some nonfiction books, I am tempted to skip all the introductory content, but I was eating up every single word of this book. This is one of the few books that was just asking for me to break out a pencil and underline passage after passage.

“Tarot is a mirror. It reflects back who you are. It shows you your strengths and weaknesses. It makes you confront the decisions you ha
Feb 08, 2020 rated it it was ok
I found this book to be repetitive and contradictory. For such a thick volume, the information contained within was rather sparse compared to other texts of the same nature.
Dec 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
The book is a fantastic reference for the Rider Waite Smith tarot deck. It is academic in its approach and analyzes all 72 of the cards individually. There are tons of spreads, guidance on developing your own spreads, and correspondences of all sorts (astrological, elemental, qabbalistic, etc.) It is this book where I learned of elemental dignities and affinities, two concepts that influence my reading to this day. My only gripe is I wish the book were less binary in its understanding of gender ...more
Apr 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: occult
"We do not have predetermined fates; rather, we have dispositions. From there we walk a garden of forking paths, and the forks we choose are what determine our future."

"Tarot helps because it brings to our awareness the otherwise repressed impulses in our unconscious that are having an inexplicable effect on our consciousness."
Jan 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
There are so many books out there on Tarot, but this is one every Tarot enthusiast truly needs as a reference. It's so comprehensive that I can honestly say if I had to narrow all of my Tarot books down to just one, this is the one I'd keep. ...more
izzy strazzabosco
Sep 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
one of the first guides ive actually enjoyed
Gabriel Clarke
Aug 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2017
Does it have its longeurs? Yes? Have we all read the tarot meanings chapters before? Yes, probably several times. But the long, analytical, meticulously built and constructed chapter on reading the cards (long enough to be a book in itself) is one of the best things I've read on the mechanics of reading and interpreting Tarot layouts and is the kind of refresher course the most hardened pro could probably pick up or reinvent a few new tricks from. Don't judge by the first couple of hundred pages ...more
Ashley Rheiner
Jan 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Wow, what a twist of fate this was!! I went in to 78 Degrees of Wisdom expecting to love it and was disappointed by overly wordy and drawn out explanations. I went into Holistic Tarot expecting to hate it because of the author’s “Don’t use this for fortune telling” stance and actually ended up learning quite a bit! Over half of my tarot notebook exists now because of this book. I’d definitely recommend getting this book if you’re really serious about reading tarot, whether for yourself or profes ...more
Jul 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Benebell's book is truly comprehensive! I find myself flipping to it before most of my extensive collection of tarot books for her take on a card or reading. She doesn't subscribe to the "reading your fortune" meaning of tarot. Instead, she looks at how to use the tarot for in depth comprehension of your actions and feelings! Really a perfect tarot book as it has a little of everything. I believe I will be flipping to this book for decades to come! ...more
Alejandro Morales
Apr 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A huge achievement regarding the study of Tarot. A nice review of most important issues, like meanings of Major and Minor Arcana, spreads, and so much more on a volume of almost a thousand pages. A great reference for every Tarot reader.
Inspired 2 Craft
Aug 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: tarot, magical
I've been a fan of divination in all different ways, but the one that I have the most interest in is tarot. Though, I haven't really dived into it too much. However, I figure the best way to learn is to start with a well-written book, no matter the size, and get the full depth details about tarot that would suit any and all beginners to know. This one book I've received, Holistic Tarot by Benebell Wen has really helped me feel a bit more comfortable with understanding tarot cards, purpose, and a ...more
Tibby (she/her)
If nothing this is a very through book. It's close to 700 pages of actual text to read (plus another 150 of appendices and notes and index). The upside of this is that there is plenty to keep coming back to as you deepen your tarot studies. The downside is, it's intimidating and light on stuff for the true beginner. You'll have to be motivated to read through various chapters and be willing to skip more advanced and confusing things. Wen's basic suggestion for beginners is to slog through a coup ...more
Apr 04, 2020 rated it liked it
Books about tarot are hard for me to read. Mostly because the couple books I've read turn into a book of long descriptions about each card. I'm not as interested in reading about the interpretations of each card as I am in reading about the history of tarot and the methods used. This book was much better than others I've read - I liked how the author went into specifics about tarot rituals. She goes into details about methods of shuffling, spreads, card pulling, and grounding techniques. I didn' ...more
Shōkai Sinclair
Dec 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is the most comprehensive and versatile book on the tarot that I've come across. Benebell Wen deftly marries a rigorous and thorough scholarship with a unique and impressively intuitive “tarot analytics” approach. It's a great book for both a beginner who's ready to dive in and someone more experienced who's ready to go professional. As a marketer, I was pleased to see the mix of marketing exercises that you can use to bootstrap your business. My only criticisms for this book is that I real ...more
Jan 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: tarot
The beginning of the book didn't really capture my interests. Basic Tarot 101, if you will, and I feel as though I've mostly surpassed that. The card meanings section also didn't resonate with me ENTIRELY, but has some good stuff regardless of my personal preferences. But once you get past those sections the book was FANTASTIC. It includes a little bit of everything and is definately a good sourcebook at jumping off point for more detailed studies. I will be recommending it to others regardless ...more
Elizabeth Cummings
Apr 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Benebell Wen possesses a vast knowledge across many subjects. She is proficient with tarot, astrology, numerology, feng-shui, and magick. Adept at summarizing this wisdom into her books, her website is also full of metaphysical information: videos, print-outs, study guides and more. Holistic Tarot is a tome offering a higher level of instruction than most tarot books. I can't say enough good things about Benebell. Did I mention she is a lawyer and has designed and illustrated a tarot deck? The y ...more
Sep 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
A comprehensive book for all level of Tarot reader. The book provided a companion website, so that you can visit it for a reference or a worksheet. This book contains meaning for each card, the spread, how to create an ultar. Pretty much everything that you won't find in most of Tarot books. If you have only one book slot for Tarot reading, I would give this a recommendation. Nevertheless, some sections were too deep, in which, I don't think I would have to use it.

The concept in this book was in
Jul 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: my-library
Not truly done with this book, but I don't think you really can be, since it seems like more of an encyclopedic reference than a book you just read from start to finish. She offers great advice no matter where you are in your tarot journey, and incorporates nuances from the I Ching, Astrology, and other areas. Lots of charts and tables, which I like. Huge resource. It did read as rather analytical/maybe clinical, but I was fine with it since it offers something new that I've not seen from other ...more
Luly Ceballos
Jul 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely fantastic! This one is for sure the bible for modern approach to Tarot. I think it's a little to the Academic side, the author is very serious and I dare to say she presents the most interesting spreads I have seen. The amount of information deserves rereading of course. Lots of practice exercises. Some aspects like history of Tarot and developing a more intuitive approach to tarot are discussed but not in deep. Is this a book for a beginner? Yes. What about intermediate and advanced ...more
Feb 19, 2021 rated it really liked it
This is an excellent resource; but there's almost 'too much" information stuffed into one book.

On the one hand I see how this makes it ultra-comprehensive; like a one-stop shop.

But on the other hand: I don't want to go into business reading tarot. I'm not worried about how to turn down a "twin flame" reading for a client or how to file my tarot business taxes.

Overall this book is easy to read and it's easy to find what you need (and skip past what you don't.) If I had started learning with it
Sep 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Ok, well - this is probably no book you read from cover to cover. As it is the case with most (introductory) books on the subject. In the past month I have, with the help of the downloadable introductory-material on her homepage, taken a further step into my Tarot-studies and am quite impressed by the depth, thoroughness and comprehensiveness Benebell Wen brings to her subject. Easily one of the most detailed Introductions to the topic, highly recommended for the practically inclined.
Sep 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is not a book, it is a total encyclopedia. A brilliant book that makes you see Tarot from very different perspectives. i use to read all her material at her site, so, in the very beginning I thought I would read the same things in the book, how wrong I was!
The book is a total compendium that is suited to seasoned readers as much as for novates.
It is well written as all of this author. Really recommended for all levels of Tarot readers.
Jun 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
THE book to learn tarot. A very rigorous, analytical approach to the history of tarot and hence to the cumulative meaning of tarot symbols and how to decipher them. The star that is missing in my review is, in my opinion, the intuition that cannot be alienated while reading a tarot spread, which is missing in this book. In reality, there is no dichotomy between the scientifically cumulation of meanings in tarot and intuition. When we learn this, we will master this elusive art of divination.
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“Fear is dangerous, not the tarot. The tarot represents the spectrum of the human condition, the good, the evil, the light, and the dark. Do not fear the darker aspects of the human condition. Understand them. The tarot is a storybook about life, about the greatness of human accomplishment, and also the ugliness we are each capable of.” 22 likes
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