The Astrology Center of America, 207 Victory Lane, Bel Air, MD 21014
Tel: 410-638-7761; Fax:410-638-5154; Toll-free (orders only): 800-475-2272
Tarot Home Tarot Decks Tarot Books Join our tarot mailing list Astrology Home E-Mail: Dave


Xultun Tarot, The Maya Tarot Deck

by Peter Balin

Xultun Tarot, The Maya Tarot Deck, $15.95

Don't forget the book for this tarot deck:

Flight of the Feathered Serpent, by Peter Balin,
Dimensions: 11 x 8.4 inches, or 280 x 214 mm (horizontal format), 183 pages. Illustrations (all b&w) are profuse, includes all 78 cards & many, many more sketches, diagrams, etc. The books ends with 30 magnificent full page illustrations of The Journey of the Fool. As a tarot book it's okay and an okay intro to Mayan culture. It says nothing about the mysterious middle of the pip cards, even though this is the author who designed them. Also included are detailed notes on the sexual expression of each tarot card. At one point (pg. 52) he equates all sexual activity with masturbation, since as the mind uses the body for its own gratification it could never be otherwise(!). Kings & Queens are said to be off the market but that doesn't stop the King & Queen of Swords from being gay, the Servant of Swords from being a voyeur & the Warrior of Swords as a cold & ruthless Romeo. Sad stuff. Get this for the wonderful illustrations. Arkana, $15.95

Number of cards in deck: 78

Measurements: 2.95 x 4.6 inches; or 75 x 116 millimeters.

Back of card: Green, with a small white Mayan figure repeated in diagonal rows. Symmetric, so you can invert the cards.

Booklet included: A leaflet with 16 panes, each 2.9 x 4.5 inches, or 73 x 115 mm. Each card is described briefly, but of importance, sufficient hints are given to figure out which major arkana card is which (see comments).

Publisher: Arcana Publishing Co., a division of Lotus Light Publications, Twin Lakes, WI. Presumably printed in the USA.

Comments: We confess we're not experts on Mayan art, language, calendar & number system but by all accounts the creator of this deck is & that's impressive.

The major arkana is loosely inspired by traditional Rider Waite - some cards are easier to identify than others, but none are labeled & the numbers are in Maya script of dots & lines. Rather than wish for labels, learn the Mayan symbols.

Minor arkana all have a black label on the bottom. Suits are Jade, Swords, Staffs & Cups & are color-coded. Court cards are Lord, Lady, Warrior & Servant. Court cards fall in this pattern: The person is seated in a clear field, below them are a row of icons unique to the other face cards in the suit.

The pip cards (ace through ten) are perhaps the most fascinating cards in the deck. Most of them are divided into thirds: The top third is a figure that portrays the meaning of the card. The middle third is a series of Maya glyphs. The bottom third repeats the number of pips (eg, 3 swords, seven jade, etc.) & on some, an astrological sign & planet are included, as glyphs.

The Astrology Center of America

207 Victory Lane, Bel Air, MD 21014
Tel: 410-638-7761; Fax:410-638-5154; Toll-free (orders only): 800-475-2272

Tarot Home Tarot Decks Tarot Books Join our tarot mailing list Astrology Home E-Mail: Dave

Established 1993, The Astrology Center of America is owned & operated by David Roell. Except where noted, this entire site (AstroAmerica.com) & its contents are Copyright © 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000 by William R. Roell. All rights reserved. Tarot card images are Copyright © by the copyright holder (generally the publisher).