Whoever may believe that he has found, in this book,
a collection of recipes through which he can effortlessly obtain honor,
fame, wealth and power or the means to annihilate his enemies should be told
that eventually he will very disappointedly put this book aside.
sects, religious and the like, as well as schools of thought such as
philosophy, understand nothing more under the word “magic” than sorcery and
conspiracy with the dark forces. Therefore it is not surprising that many
people are somewhat apprehensive at the mere mention of the word.
Prestidigitators, illusionists, charlatans, so-called stage magicians and
whatever else they may be called often misuse the concept of magic, which
circumstance contributes immensely to the fact that magical knowledge has
always been regarded with a certain contempt.
time immemorial the Magi were always considered to be the highest initiates;
the word “magic” originated from them. The so-called sorcerers are not
initiates; instead they are only imitators of the Mysteries who exploit the
ignorance and gullibility of the individual and of an entire nation in order
to achieve their selfish goals through deception and dishonesty. The true
magician despises any such actions.
in reality a sacred science. It is, in the truest sense of the term, the
knowledge of all knowledge, because it teaches us how to understand and
utilize the universal laws. Whenever you are dealing with true initiation,
there is no difference between magic and mysticism or any other similar
concepts, regardless of whatever names may be used by the prevailing
ideology. It must be proceeded with on the same basis in accordance with the
same universal laws. In consideration of the universal laws of the polarity
of good and evil, of active and passive, of light and shadow, any science
can be employed for good or evil purposes. For instance, the actual purpose
of a bread knife is to cut bread, but it can become a dangerous weapon in
the hands of a murderer. Everything depends upon the characteristics of the
individual. This principle applies to all areas of occult knowledge. In my
book, I [Franz Bardon] have chosen the term “magician” for the student as a symbol of his
aspiration toward the highest initiation and the highest knowledge.
readers are probably aware that the Tarot is not a game of cards serving
mantic or prophetic purposes. Instead it is a book of initiation in which
the greatest secrets are contained symbolically. The first card or first
page of this book introduces the Magician, who represents the mastery of the
elements and offers the key to the first arcanum, the secret of the
ineffable name Tetragrammaton, the Kabbalistic YOD-HEH-VAU-HEH. Here we find
the gate of initiation for magicians. The reader of this book will realize
how meaningful and how universal the application of the first Tarot card
really is. In no other book that has been published so far has the true
sense of the first Tarot card been so clearly described as in this work.
This system is structured with the greatest of care and with the utmost
circumspection; it is not a speculative method, but the positive result of
thirty years of research, practical exercises and repeated comparisons to
many other systems of the various lodges, secret societies, and Oriental
knowledge which are only accessible to especially gifted individuals and to
the chosen few. It is — nota bene — from my own practical experience
destined for the use of many. All my students have proved it to be the best
and most usable system.
does not mean, nor do I [Franz Bardon] make the claim, that this book answers all questions
about magic or mysticism. If everything were to be written down about this
high knowledge, it would encompass many volumes. It can be said that this
work is actually the entrance to true initiation — it is the first key of
utilizing the universal laws. There is no question that you will find
fragments of Hermetic knowledge in the works of various authors, but the
reader will hardly find a single book which describes the first Tarot card
in as much detail as this work.
step of this course of instruction, I [Franz Bardon] have made every effort to be as
intelligible as possible in order to make the greatest truths accessible to
everyone. To express the truth in simple words so that it is understandable
to everyone has been a very difficult task. I leave it to the reader’s
judgment as to whether I have succeeded in this endeavor. In several
instances I found it necessary to intentionally repeat certain statements in
order to underline especially important sections and also to save the reader
the time of searching for it.
past, there have been many complaints by those who are interested in the
secret sciences, as well as students of the occult sciences, who were given
no opportunity to be initiated by a personal master or guide (guru), and
thus true knowledge was only made accessible to the especially gifted or
talented. Many true seekers have had to search through many volumes of books
to obtain here and there a glimpse of a pearl of truth. Whoever is serious
about his own development and who does not pursue this sacred knowledge out
of pure curiosity or for the satisfaction of his own desires will find this
work the proper guide to initiation. There is not one incarnated initiate,
no matter how high-ranking he may be, who can offer more to the neophyte
than what is offered in this book. Should the honest student and the
attentive reader find in this book what he could not find in any other work,
then this book has completely fulfilled its purpose.
authored by Franz Bardon