The High Deck

THE HIGH DECK: A New Universe of Symbols

The High Deck
by Arthur Amberstone and
Wald Amberstone
art restoration: Robert M. Place
ISBN: 978-0-7643-4228-8
128 pp. + 38 card deck
$34.99 US

A whole new world of card games and an untapped resource for card game inventors. The High Deck is a source of the original work and perspectives of The Tarot School.

The High Deck is something new in the world. Conceived, designed and developed a lifetime ago, it has just been published for the first time.

The High Deck is a whole new universe of symbols. It is a trailblazing psychology of self-inquiry. It is an exciting and beautiful new world of play. Although it isn't a tarot deck at all, it is a foundation stone of The Tarot School, and through The Tarot School it has influenced modern tarot in a very concrete way.

It is a universe of symmetries, a world of two colors, four houses, eight persons and thirty-two characters that arrange themselves in a dynamic of opposites and complements. It is a deck made of fluid social relationships rather than strict numerical hierarchies, and its images are beautiful but not archetypal. They are designed for play and for playful interactions, both psychological and metaphysical.

Arthur Amberstone The High Deck knits the world together and plays with the deep symbolism of human society. It is the creation of Arthur Amberstone, with the help of his son Wald Amberstone, who gained his first understanding of himself and the world from its images, and who offers it to you now with love and pleasure.

Wald Amberstone

The High Deck was conceived, my father told me, in 1947. It has gestated for 65 years, and now, all these years later, it is about to be born into the very public light of day.

The first sets will reach the publisher's warehouse in January, 2013 and from that time onward, it will be a free-standing creation with a life and destiny of its own. Anyone who has ever waited a lifetime for something to happen will appreciate how I feel.

I have spent more than 50 years with tarot, and tarot is a truly great creation. It is a living power that arose in historical obscurity and became more and more vital with the passing of the centuries. The High Deck is as great and as powerful as tarot, but at this writing is not yet even one day old. I can't wait to see what kind of beginning and what life it will have!

Wald Amberstone

The High Deck Manuscript brings to life and explains a whole new deck of cards, with new games and a new take on symbolism and psychology.

High Deck Set

Included here are a beautifully conceived and illustrated card deck, explanatory manuscript containing wonderful games to play with the deck, and an explanation of the fully formed symbolism of the deck with its far-reaching implications for users' lives, creating an archetypal mirror for personal use.

The thirty-eight cards of the deck feature thirty-two characters divided into red and black houses and eight individual persons, including the Knight, Priest, Father, Lover, Vassal, Sinner, Child, and Maid. Together these cards form the mirror, with which users may peer deeply into themselves by creating “The Motley Player,” a symbolic being in one's own image.

How do Tarot and The High Deck compare?

    Both are grand symbolic universes in the form of a deck of cards.

    Both are capable of reading human nature and the nature of the world.

    The main use of tarot historically has been for the play of a single game, for divination, for personal counseling and for magical practice.

    The main use of The High Deck is to explain the primary forces of the universe, to reveal a person to himself, and as a varied and extensive play form.

    Tarot is divination, psychology, magic, archaic metaphysics and limited archaic play. The High Deck is a new metaphysics and psychology, and a matrix for a whole world of modern games.

    Tarot is syncretic. Only its one game is original to it. Its strength is its names and its structure, which give rise to all the images, meanings and uses that have accrued to it over the centuries. Its origins and intentions are lost and can only be imagined. Its meanings, uses and images change with the times. It has no apparent intrinsic nature.

    The High Deck was created all in one act. Its symbolism, meanings, structure and uses were known and intended from the beginning and were organic and original to it. Both the creator and intention of The High Deck are known and documented.

    The unique qualities of The Tarot School are largely founded on the importation into tarot of High Deck principles and techniques. To the extent that The Tarot School has contributed to the development of modern tarot, it is due in large measure to the influence of The High Deck.

    With its appearance for the first time in printed form, The High Deck now takes its place in the world, and from this time forward it will have its own history.

    Dear Wald,

    I received The High Deck yesterday and I can honestly say that it is “Love at First Sight.” I love the professional presentation and LOVE that the primary colors are my favorite red and black. I read the entire book last night and plan to read it again over the weekend prior to playing with the cards. There is no doubt in my mind that I will love working with The High Deck.

    I am putting out my request to the universe so that I get to know your father in my next lifetime or on another dimension. I now understand where you get your wizardly appeal!


    High Deck Card Back

    Add The High Deck to your collection!
    (Wald will personalize and autograph it, too.)

    order here

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