Rebirth at Eleusis: Unveiling the Tarot Mysteries
Rebirth at Eleusis: Unveiling the Tarot Mysteries is a 41-page eBook linking each of the major arcana with the sacred and secret initiatory rites of Eleusis in Ancient Greece.
By James Bean
eBook - 41 pages - Self Published
Review by Bonnie Cehovet
“Eleusis” adds yet another level to the mystery of the origins of Tarot. Here we see the 22 cards of the Major Arcana connected to the sacred initiation rites at Eleusis. (In mythology, Eleusis is the place where the cult of the Goddess Demeter existed, and where the famous religious festivals, called the “Eleusinian mysteries”, were performed.)
Normally I do not include the chapter headings in my reviews, but in this case, it will help to show the foundation and flow for this book.
0 the Fool - The Initiate
1 The Magician - Hermes
The Legend of Demeter and Persephone
2 High Priestess - Demeter
3 The Empress - Persephone
4 The Emperor - Hades
5 The Hierophant
6 The Lovers
7 The Chariot - Triptolemus
8 Strength - Hercules
9 The Hermit - Hecate
10 Wheel of Fortune - The Narrow Bridge
11 Justice - The Gate
12 Hanged Man - Descent
13 Death - The Lord of Death
14 Temperance - Dionysus
15 The Devil - Hieros-Gamos
16 The Tower - Climax
17 The Star - Mystery Ritual
18 The Moon - Womb of the Earth
19 The Sun - Helios
20 Judgment - Ascent
21 The World - Son of the Sun
In his introduction, Bean notes that his belief is that the origins of the Tarot reflect the principle players and the secret rites that took place in ancient Greece that showed the initiate the secrets of life and death. His belief is that the cards of the Tarot represent sacred, secret cults. While these rites were forbidden to be spoken about, they were eventually depicted in visual form.
Each card carries information about the images depicted, the meaning of the card within the context of the Eleusinian mysteries, and keywords. Interspersed are author’s notes, such as the one on not confusing Hades with Hell, and under the Hierophant we see the progressive schedule of the initiates.
In this short book (44 pages) we get a basic overall image of the connection between the Major Arcana of the Tarot and the Eleusinian mysteries. It is a good read, but I for one would like to have seen this material expanded upon.
© Bonnie Cehovet
Bonnie Cehovet is Certified Tarot Grand Master, a professional Tarot reader with over ten years experience, a Reiki Master/Teacher and a writer. Bonnie has served in various capacities with the American Tarot Association, is co-founder of the World Tarot Network, and Vice President (as well as Director of Certification) for the American Board For Tarot Certification. She has had articles appear in the 2004 and 2005 Llewellyn Tarot Reader.