Tag Archives: Christine Payne-Towler

Holy Light Tarot Classes!

Tarot of the Holy Light

Christine Payne-Towler has given me permission to share this with you in its entirety. An incredible three month class cover the different layers of her deck, Tarot of the Holy Light. I hope to see each of you there!

“Here’s the news about our upcoming 3-month webinar over October, November and December. Everything we are going to talk about is in my recent book, so participants will need to acquire their own copy. The Kindle version is inexpensive, complete (except for bibliography), and in full color. The black and white softback can be bought at, or else from me at (which helps me out if you are in the US or Canada).

The focus of our time together will answer the question, ”What are the layers of meaning in the Tarot of the Holy Light?” We’ll be looking at the Icon, the illustrations and the appendixes, which detail the system of signs/planets/elements inhabiting the cards. In the course of teaching to the deck, I’m simultaneously teaching to the traditions present in the early 1600’s. Therefore this class represents a way of encountering the older magical worldview that maps over to the Tarot outline. I intend to demonstrate the practical applications for all the features that a Renaissance magus would project onto the cards. Topics will include using the deck as a magical calendar, using the Horoscope Spread as a diagnostic tool, deriving personal remedies from the Doctrine of Essential Dignities, approaching the Shem Angels, and more.

The 8th of October makes a great day to start, because if we can meet every other Thursday we’ll manage to escape the holidays. I am proposing that we meet at 4:00 Pacific Time, which will mean the class crosses the dinner hour for some people. The software we are using allows for up to 25 people in the chatroom at a time, but I’m not going to expect every person to attend every class. Each episode will be recorded and therefore people can encounter the material in their own favorite time and situation. I’d like to give it an hour and a half each sitting, if participants don’t consider that overkill.

My charge for this class will be $50 per month per person, though couples can pay $75 per month if that will make it easier for both to attend. That makes $150 total over the 4th quarter of the year. Feel free to get in touch if you want to participate. My e-mail is, or you can find me on Facebook. Please tell your friends, since this letter and announcements in the ArkLetter and at FaceBook are my only forms of advertising. I will be happy to include people right up to the day we start, and possibly after as well. (Frankly, I hope this group continues into next year! But we shall see how it goes….)

Thank you for your interest, please let me know if you need more information before you make up your mind. I might be out of town this week with a family issue in Portland, but after than I’m home until class starts.

Blessings, I look forward to being with you soon!”

Tarot Arkletters

(c) September 2015 Bonnie Cehovet

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Posted by on September 25, 2015 in Tarot


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Review: Tarot of the Holy Light – Esoteric Continental Tarot

Tarot of the Holy Light –
A Continental Esoteric Tarot

Author: Christine Payne-Towler, Michael Dowers
Noreah/Brownfield Press
ISBN #978-0-9673043-2-8

THL cover

“Tarot of the Holy Light and its companion volume Foundations of the Esoteric Tradition supply the key to unlock Tarot’s significance as the premier magical calculator of the Renaissance. The correspondences demonstrated in Tarot of the Holy Light apply to any historical Tarot that conforms to the Marseilles order and numeration. These timeless fundamentals reveal the inner architecture that has been carried forward in the Tarots of Etteilla, the so-called Egyptian Tarots (Belline, Falconnier, Zain), the literary works of Christian, Levi and Papus, right up to classic 20th century Continental esoteric packs like the Tarots of Oswald Wirth and Manly P. Hall. This Volume 1 of the set is dedicated to the creators of Continental Tarots in the past, present, and future in honor of the magical philosophy that inhabits the historical Tarot’s outline and inherent meanings.” ~ From the back cover.

Christine came to my attention way back in the hay day of the Tarot-L Internet group. I am a night person, and there were many discussions in the middle of the night between Christine and those who disagreed with her. Fascinating discussions that I could only sit back and watch, because I didn’t have the knowledge to contribute anything. Kudos to Christine for hanging in there!

I was very pleased to see Christine publish her deck (Tarot of the Holy Light), and I am even more pleased and excited to see the text to accompany the deck seeing the light of day in print. A great deal of thought and research has gone into this book, a book that reflects a lifetime of work in the field of Tarot. I am fond of the esoteric side of Tarot, and follow Christine’s work through her site,

Tarot of the Holy Light is softcover, 5” by 7”, and 492 pages. The cover art, by Patrick Dowers (brother to Michael Dowers) is the same as the cover of the box for the deck. The book contains 100 images and original graphs that help to make it quite unique! There is an introduction to the Minor Arcana, a separate chapter on each of the suits, and a separate chapter on the Trumps.

In her preface Christine talks about the Tarot of today being the same as the Tarot of yesterday. She posits that the visual format of the graph, or information grid, penetrated into Europe from their Arabic neighbors to the east and south during the pre-Renaissance of the 12th and 13th centuries. This allowed westerners to understand the related values that make up the layers of the Tarot. This book includes the influences on the Tarot of the Holy Light cards that are not expressly detailed on the faces of the cards.

In the very first pages of the book Christine has shared her Tarot of the Holy Light icon – a detailed graphic that includes the planets, their associated Major Arcana card, and the Major Arcana and planetary associations for Primal Air, Primal Water, and Primal Fire. Well worth the price of admission!

In her introduction, Christine indicates that the title of this book “states her case boldly” – that her deck represents the summation of her studies in the field of esoteric Continental Tarot. She notes that she is referencing Europe proper, and not Great Britain, or the Iberian Peninsula.

Her stance is that the very first pack of cards with enumerated Trumps, showing numerals on the faces of the Major Arcana, demonstrate the coherency with its implied body of correspondences that would allow it to become an esoteric computer for the Renaissance and all that followed.

In her introduction to the Minor Arcana, Christine makes some interesting statements, including that the Tree is the Fallen Tree, and specific to the pips (numbered cards), that each suit circles the grand trine of its element, and that the three cards representing each sign occupy the triangular centers of the Tree in a very deliberate manner. She also talks about Essential Dignities as Alchemical Catalysts. She regards reversals as an opportunity for the practitioner to stretch their intuition and open hidden layers of influence. Included in this chapter are graphs of the planets on the Unfallen Tree, and the Signs on the Unfallen Tree, Upper & Lower Countenance, the Fallen Human, the Lightning Struck Tree (The Fall), the Sexagesimal Grid of the Mysteries, the Ladder of Light with Lullian Triangles, the Tarot of the Holy Light Mandala, the Boehme Star of Restitution, and the Maze (by Patrick Dowers).

Each pip (numbered card) is presented with the following associations: Astrological, Sephira, Essential Dignity (upright and reversed), and Angelic Dignity (upright and reversed). Each Court Card is presented with the associated planet. Each Major Arcana card is presented as part of the Septenary scheme, with the Hebrew Letter, the Path on the Tree of Life, and the Quality. Each card is accompanied by a black and white image, and an in-depth write-up of what the cards esoteric qualities are, a bit of its history, and how its energy works.

In the appendix we find the Horoscope Spread, the Celtic Cross Spread, Tarot deck citations, a Graph of Minor Arcana Values, a graph of Major Arcana Values, a graph of the Shem Angels, and a Bibliography.

What is laid out in this book is the foundation of the Continental esoteric Tarot. Through text and graphs, we maneuver our way through the myriad layers of information and come out with our own idea of what brings the Tarot to life, and how we can use it in our own life. Our task is to learn this information well, and incorporate it into our lives. Remember, there is a Volume 2 coming that will take us into the foundations of the esoteric system!

© 2015 Bonnie Cehovet

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Posted by on July 15, 2015 in Tarot


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Northwest Astrology & Tarot Salon – Introducing Christine Payne-Towler

Christine Payne-Towler 2

In November of this year the inaugural Northwest Astrology and Tarot Salon will be held at the Breitenbush Conference Center, near Detroit, OR. (More information about the Salon can be found here – I would like to introduce you to Christine Payne-Towler, one of the Conversation Leaders for this event.

As a Conversation Leader, Christine will be focusing on Ancient Astrology. Here is a taste of what to expect from Christine!

“All of the Oracles of Western culture rest in the matrix of astrology one way or another. Sometimes they borrow the basic ingredients of the astrological cosmos (planets, signs, seasons or elements), Sometimes they borrow the format of astrology (tabulating their results in house-wheel type charts, or analyzing them according to astrological categories).

Sometimes they are tied up with the letters of the Magical Alphabet, which is inherently astrological as well. Astrology also provides the “container” and motive power for the alchemical Great Work, whether that is conceived as being spagyric, psychological, or spiritual in scope. Therefore it helps Tarot people to have some exposure to the basic aspects of the astrological world-view held by the people among whom Tarot first appeared. Putting these two symbol-sets together has the power to super-charge your readings and Tarot meditations.

Christine will use her own pack made with Michael Dowers, the Tarot of the Holy Light, as well as others that have appeared across the history of Tarot, to illustrate the magical and astral assumptions that govern the progression of the Trumps and the personalities of the minor cards. Those who have their charts with them will be able to see how different decks and systems illustrate their private psyche, and why they might consider choosing their deck based on what it has to say about their chart.

Several decks will be aid out in a Zodiacal manner, so that we can all see what happens when we play with the correspondences that represent different historical stages of Tarot’s development. We will also be able to see how our own charts “pencil out” according to the different systems. What fun!
You can see more of Christine’s work on her site,

(c) 2000 – 2014 Bonnie Cehovet

Reproduction prohibited without written permission from the author.

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Posted by on March 25, 2014 in Tarot


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Review – Tarot of the Holy Light App

Tarot of the Holy Light App

Version 1.2.2
Size: 25.9 MB
Language: English
The Fool’s Dog, LLC
© 2012-2013 The Fool’s Dog, LLC

Compatibility: Requires iOS 4.3 or higher. Compatible with iPhone,  iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.

THL main menu

I love the deck that this app is based on – inspired by the 17th century alchemical manuscripts, and evoking Sophia, the divine embodiment of the ancient wisdom of the Abrahamic tribes. My review of “The Holy Light Tarot” can be seen here – on New Reading holy-light/.

This is a Continental style Tarot, drawing upon astrology, Kabbalah, and alchemy. It is a joint effort from Christine Payne-Towler (founder of Tarot University), and artist Michal Dowers.

There are 13 built in spreads, and a free form option, as well the ability to journal your readings, and to share them via e-mail or Twitter. This app is easy to use for both beginners and experts. And added bonus that is of incomparable value is Christine Payne-Towler’s 251 page guidebook to the deck. There is the option to read with reversed cards, to read with Major Arcana only, and to zoom in and enlarge card details. There is an animated shuffle and cut, an optional voice prompts. The user can also customize their own card meanings and reading cloths.

The landing page shows the following links: New Readings, Draw A Card, Today’s Card, Explore, Journal, and Feedback. Clicking on New Reading brings the user to a page that presents a text box for the user to enter their question, followed by a choice of the following spreads: One Card, Past/Present/Future, The Spirit Spread, The Celtic Spread, Free Form Spread, The Zodiac Spread, Comparing Choices, New Love, Going Deeper, Relationship Problems, The Clue Faerie, Breaking Up, Achieving Prosperity, and Archetypes of Character. Below this are Settings, where the user may chose a Reading Cloth, Allow reversed cards, use a significator, use Majors only, draw cards from the top of the deck, draw cards face up, or go straight to the reading.

THL Chariot

The reading begins with options for shuffle and cut. Once the user is satisfied, they press on the blue star to continue. At the top right hand side of the page is the link to Draw, on the top left hand side of the page is the link to the menu. The next screen shows a deck – the user taps on the deck to place each card. In the upper right hand corner of the screen is a link with the options to turn announce cards off, edit the question, change the reading cloth, share the reading, and return to the reading. In the upper left hand corner of the screen is a link to leave the reading. In the lower left hand side of the screen is a link to read the spread. There is a link in the upper right hand with options, and a link in the upper left hand corner to go back to the previous screen. The bottom left hand corner brings up the reading, with upright and reversed meanings for each card. The lower right hand corner takes the user to the journal, where the user has the option to type in their own interpretation. The upper right hand corner of this screen gives the user the option to either share the reading, or to return to the overview.

THL Reading Cloths

Clicking on Draw A Card takes the user to a screen with an enlarged version of the card they drew. The card shows upright and reversed keywords, as well as a link to the full text from Christine’s book. There is absolutely no way that I can emphasize strongly enough how important this book is, and how in-depth it is.

Clicking on Today’s Card gives the user the same options as clicking on Draw A Card.

Clicking on Explore brings the user the following options: About This Deck, Cards, Spreads, Reading Cloths, The Book, Using This App, and Catalog of Decks (from The Fool’s Dog, LLC).Again, a whisper in your ear to refer to Christine’s book to your heart’s content! You will not find a better Tarot reference anywhere!

Clicking on Journal takes the user to a screen that shows the readings that they have saved. There is a link in the upper right hand corner to edit the entry, and a link in the upper left hand corner to go back to the menu. Clicking on the reading brings up the spread, the cards, and their upright and reversed meanings. In the upper right hand corner of the screen is a link to the following options: Share This Entry, Delete This Entry, Additional Comments, and Return to Journal Entry.

Clicking on Feedback brings the user a screen with the following options: I love it!, Comments, and Help me! Clicking on I love it! Allows the user to rate and review the app in the app store, e-mail it to their friends, or Tweet it.

Clicking on Comments allows the user to send comments to The Fool’s Dog, LLC.

Clicking on Help me! Brings the user a screen with the following options: Check the manual, check online FAQ, and Email tech support.

This app is very well done, and very easy to use. The deck is a moment in time all of its own! Continental style, with the best written LWB (Little White Book/Companion Book) that I have ever seen! You will not regret carrying this digital gem around with you!

© 2000 – 2013 Bonnie Cehovet

Reproduction prohibited in all venues without the written permission of the author.

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Posted by on September 25, 2013 in Tarot


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