Tarot for Life - Prospero
“In every life there are things that can be adjusted for better results and other things that must be accepted as they are. Used well, Tarot can illustrate both and help us to exercise more freedom of choice in our lives.” –from the book

Tarot for Life is a jargon-free, no-nonsense book that not only explains the meaning of the cards but also unravels the spirit behind them. Instead of providing dogmatic interpretations, Prospero encourages the reader to create a unique relationship with the Tarot. In fact, he stresses the importance of following your instincts, because ultimately, you have the last word on your relationship with the cards.

Divided into 22 lessons and featuring Tarot images commissioned especially for the book, Tarot for Life provides spreads, instructions on contacting your spirit Guide, reading ethics, affirmations, meditations and more. In each lesson you’ll find:

Some practical information, either about the structure of the Tarot or how to use it in readings or in other ways
A spread you can use, with some idea of where it can be most useful
Card descriptions—one Major Arcana card in each lesson and four Minor Arcana in lessons I to XIV
An exercise based on the Major Arcana for the lesson

Although this book can be used for individual study, Prospero offers that it may be more enjoyable and rewarding to experience this course in a group of six people or less.

Prospero shares his knowledge of the Tree of Life (Kabbalah), magick, and Thelema, and offers a great chakra meditation for grounding. When I read Tarot for Life, I felt like I was being taught by a friend sitting across the table; with some Tarot books, the information is presented in a dry, elitist manner—but not so with Tarot for Life. Immediately accessible, the lessons meld esoterica, common sense, and personal experience for a fascinating course on the Tarot.

The author writes in such an engaging style that it can be easy to miss the wisdom he offers. For example, regarding the meaning of the Knight of Wands he explains: “As a level of development, either a change in attitude from ‘I should be given’ to ‘I can get’ or a change in outer circumstances which removes a block.” For the meaning of the Knight of Swords, he remarks: “Be aware that the progress may be broadening rather than deepening knowledge.”

It’s tidbits like these that can contribute greatly to a reader’s understanding and use of the Tarot.

My only criticism of this book is that I wish Prospero would have delved even deeper for the exercise portion of the lessons. In Appendix Two, he explains that he intended to write a pathworking covering all of the Major Arcana and building up an inner landscape that you can return to any time. Yet, he says that if someone is capable of using such an inner space, they should be equally capable of constructing it for themselves.

In my opinion, this does a great disservice for those unfamiliar with pathworking; I would have loved to read a comprehensive treatment of pathworking with the Majors. Instead, we’re given a general outline on how to do it, within the constructs of the Tree of Life. No diagram of the Tree is given, so he merely describes the spheres and how they can be used as “houses” for the inner kingdom. Of course, those with no knowledge of Kabbalah or the Tree of Life would be quite confused by this.

This criticism on my part is quite minor given the aim and accomplishment of Tarot for Life. It just so happens that Prospero is such an engaging writer, I couldn’t help but want more. In this case, my criticism is actually a complement.

Related Articles
The Back in Time Tarot Book - Janet Boyer
The Transparent Tarot - Emily Carding
Absolute Beginner's Guide to Tarot - Mark McElroy
21 Ways to Read a Tarot Card - Mary K. Greer
Learning Tarot Spreads - Joan Bunning
Universal Fantasy Tarot - Paolo Martinello
Fenestra Tarot - Chatriya Hemharnvibul
The Halloween Tarot - Kipling West
The Instant Tarot Reader (Zerner/Farber Deck) - Monte Farber and Amy Zerner
Tarot Discovery Kit (Zerner/Farber Deck) - Monte Farber and Amy Zerner
Medieval Enchantment - The NIgel Jackson Tarot
The Victorian Romantic Tarot – Karen Mahony and Alex Ukolov
Llewellyn's 2007 Tarot Reader
Tarot of Prague - Karen Mahony and Alex Ukolov
The World Spirit Tarot - Lauren O'Leary and Jessica Godino
Baroque Bohemian Cats' Tarot - Karen Mahony and Alex Ukolov
Animals Divine Tarot - Lisa Hunt
The Tarot of Oz - David Sexton
Tarot of the Dead - Monica Knighton
WorldTree Tarot - Ann Cass
Tarot of Reflections – Francesco Ciampi and Pietro Alligo
Tarot of Metamorphosis – M. Filadoro and L. Di Giammarino
Fairytale Tarot - Karen Mahony, Alex Ukolov, and Irena Triskova
Transformational Tarot - Arnell Ando
Da Vinci Tarot - Mark McElroy, Iassen Ghuiselev, and Atanas Atanassov
True Love Tarot - Amy Zerner and Monte Farber
Rohrig Tarot - Carl-W. Rohrig
Babylonian Tarot - Sandra Tabatha Cicero
Tarot Tells the Tale - James Ricklef
Tarot Journaling - Corrine Kenner
Everyday Tarot: A Choice Centered Approach - Gail Fairfield
The Encyclopedia of Tarot Volume IV - Stuart Kaplan and Jean Huets
The 2-Hour Tarot Tutor - Wilma Carroll
Seeker: The Tarot Unveiled - Rachel Pollack
Tarot Workbook - Juliet Sharman-Burke
Tarot Tips - Ruth Ann and Wald Amberstone
What's in the Cards For You - Mark McElroy
Llewellyn's 2006 Tarot Reader
Power Tarot: More Than 100 Spreads - Trish Magregor and Phyllis Vega
What Tarot Can Do For You: Your Future in the Cards - Barbara Moore
The Four Suits of the Minor Arcana
How to Clear a Tarot or Oracle Deck
Cartomancy - How to Read Cards
Revelations Tarot - Zach Wong
Archeon Tarot - Timothy Lantz
Housewives Tarot - Paul Kepple and Jude Buffum
Pagan Tarot - Gina Pace
Golden Tarot of Klimt - A.A. Atanassov
Epicurean Tarot Recipe Cards - Corrine Kenner
Tarot of the Four Elements - Isha Lerner and Amy Ericksen
The DruidCraft Tarot - Philip and Stephanie Carr-Gomm
The Gilded Tarot - Ciro Marchetti
The Oracle Tarot - Lucy Cavendish
The Golden Tarot - Kat Black
Tarot de Paris - J. Philip Thomas
The Quest Tarot - Joseph Ernest Martin
Elemental Balance Spread
3 Card Spreads
Synergy Relationship Spread
Tree Spread
Amazing Grace Spread
Past Life Spread
Life Lesson Spread
New Year Spread - Lessons From Earth School

Content copyright © by Janet Boyer. All rights reserved. This review was written by Janet Boyer. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission.