Classes and Lectures

Robert Place Teaching 1

Robert M. Place teaching in Beijing

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Introduction to the Tarot with Robert M. Place
at the NY Open Center

Three weekly sessions on Wednesdays, 6 – 7:45 pm;


August 2, 9, and 16, 2017

and again on

November 8, 15, and 29

at The New York Open Center, 22 East 30th Street, New York

The Tarot is a deck of cards that can be used as a tool for developing intuition, but it is more than this. The cards in a Tarot deck contain symbolic images that express a mystical philosophy, a philosophy that stems from the mentors of Western culture, Pythagoras and Plato, and that has been cherished by mystics and sages over the centuries. The philosophy is expressed not only in individual pictures but in the structure and organization of the deck. Effectively, the Tarot is a map of the spiritual universe, a mandala, divided into separate components but maintaining the pattern through the relationship of each component to another. When this philosophy and structure is understood and the cards are used as an intuitive device, a communication happens between the conscious self and a source of wisdom in the unconscious that I call the Higher Self. Used in this way, the Tarot is like a personal sage that one can converse with whenever guidance is needed. As day to day decisions are made from this place of wisdom, using the Tarot becomes a spiritual path.

In this three-part class we will first study the symbolism of the Tarot as its Italian Renaissance creators intended and come to see the spiritual message contained in the deck. Then we will learn and practice techniques for developing intuition and reading the cards as a message from the Higher Self. Students will need a Tarot deck created by Robert Place, the Waite-Smith Tarot, or one based on the Waite-Smith Tarot.

For this class it is recommended that you buy The Tarot: History, Symbolism, and Divination or Alchemy and the Tarot, both by Robert M. Place. The course is based on either book and you will get the most out of the class if you read one of these. The books will be available at the Open Center bookstore. You may also buy a copy of either one or both and read them in advance of the class.

For more information on the class contact the New York Open Center

(212) 219-2527


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A Discussion on the Tarot

with Robert M. Place, Rachel Pollack,

and Sasha Graham

at the Aum Shanti Book Store

226 East 13th street, New York

Postponed until the Fall

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The Origin of the Mystical Tarot and How the Tarot can Help us Attain Wisdom

with Robert M. Place

The Seligman Art Center

23-26 White Oak Dr.

Sugar Loaf, NY

Sunday,  August 20 – 5 to 7 pm

19th century occultists, such as Eliphas Levi, Paul Christian, and Papus, considered the Tarot an indispensable component of their tradition, and to give the deck an appropriately impressive pedigree, invented several imaginative versions of the history of the cards.  These spurious origins of the Tarot have become such an accepted part of Tarot literature that they are often reported as fact.  However, the Tarot was actually a creation of Renaissance artist in northern Italy and these occult fantasies can actually block us from a true appreciation of the mystical heritage illustrated in the cards. 

In this lecture we will explore the true history and symbolism of the Tarot.  We will focus on the actual history of the Tarot. We will trace the history of playing cards, from their creation before the 12th century in China, through Asia, and to the 14th century when a deck of four suits was introduced into Europe. It will then be demonstrated that an enigmatic fifth suit, called Trumps, was added to the deck in 15th century Italy, and that this combined deck came to be known as the Tarot.  Then we will focus on the symbolism of the trumps as the Renaissance artist who created them would have viewed them and we will glimpse the mystical philosophy that they teach.

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A workshop on Alchemy and the Tarot

with Robert M. Place

on Hicks St, in Brooklyn

Saturday afternoon October 7, 2017

$100 per student

email me for more information

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Tarot at the Met
An Afternoon of Tarot History at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

Wednesday, November 1, 2017, 2-4:30 PM

and again on

Wednesday, April 25, 2018, 2-4:30 PM

Fortune Small Card Costumes des Peuples Etrangers 1890s DP274090

I will once again take a small group of people into the back rooms of the Metropolitan Museum to look at the museum’s collection of historic Tarot and divination cards, ranging from the earliest woodcut Tarocchi, printed in 15th century Italy, to rare 19th century Le Normand divination decks. All accompanied by my talk on the history and symbolism of the cards.  This year we will also see one of the oldest and richly illustrated books on divination with cards, Le Sorti, published in Venice in 1540.

The afternoon at the Met is $80 per person, prepaid. Each participant is also responsible for obtaining a ticket for entrance into the museum for the day. There is only room for 14 people at this event so don’t delay; it will fill up quickly. I will be handling this event  myself; so all arrangement must be made through me.

To register contact me at:

Payments can be made by PayPal, check, Visa, or Master Card, or by requesting a PayPal invoice.

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To receive The Restored Temple of Hermes, my free newsletter e-mailed every other month or so, with links to my latest articles and news about up-coming lectures, workshops, and publications, send an e-mail to me with The Restored Temple of Hermes in the subject line. Also, please let me know what state or country you live in.

Issue 50 of the Restored Temple of Hermes was sent out on August 31, 2017. If you did not receive it you may need to send me an updated email address.


Robert Place Teaching 2

2 Responses to Classes and Lectures

  1. ArdensEye says:

    Hi Robert,

    I took a workshop with you just after the first printing of the first deck and book, both of which I still have, it must have been 1995 or 1996. The workshop was in Northern California, maybe Berkeley or Sonoma County? Your class was important to me and I continue working with the Tarot. My name was Sidra then; I have been living in Berkeley, CA since 1984.

    I plan to buy your “Alchemy and Tarot” book, the Renewed 4th Edition deck and the new Marziano deck through Indiegogo. Just wanted to check in with you after all these years. I am very glad to see your work has developed so deeply and that you remain a productive artist and writer. Cudos to you!

    My new name came through mystical channels, using the Kabalarians of Canada’s system of analysis and resonance. I legally changed it on December 19, 2003. It was part of my alchemical transformation, helping me move gradually from lead into gold, or more balanced, so to speak.

    Thank you for what you have contributed to world knowledge, healing and beauty.


    Arden Kamille Varnel


  2. ArdensEye says:

    The class was August 11, 1996, and my name was Sidara, as you inscribed the book to me on that date.


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