Color in Tarot

Presented by: Soror CDC

The most famous of tarot decks is the Rider-Waite tarot deck. In 1909, Pamela Coleman-Smith was commissioned to illustrate a tarot deck that drew heavily on the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn symbolism. The collaboration between her and A.E. Waite is easily recognized for its symbolism, whereas the color aspect is seen as secondary. 

But color was (and is) an important aspect of ceremonial magick. In contrast to the concrete symbolism of Tarot that is used for divination, color is used for contemplation and meditation.  This presentation will go through:

  • A brief history of Tarot
  • The influence of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn and their early embrace of color theory
  • Color associations of the Tree of Life in Qabbalah and the Thirty-Two Keys of Wisdom
  • Astrological and elemental color overlap in Tarot
  • How those color associations map to the Major and Minor Arcana

Color is an important and underrated part of esoteric understanding. A direct and unmediated connection, it adds another layer of meaning to Tarot through its correspondences.