How this Discordian Tarot came about

1979, Berkeley California. I was 26 years young while attending the monthly Discordian salons hosted by iconoclastic author Robert Anton Wilson and his illustrious wife Arlen. Here I met many luminaries of quantum science, alternative literati, and performance art, including Malaclypse the Younger (aka Greg Hill), author of PRINCIPA DISCORDIA, a small unassuming book coveted by worshippers of the Goddess Eris. I asked Greg to explain Discordianism and he asked me to ask myself: "Is Discordianism a joke disguised as a religion or a religion disguised as a joke?" He said if I knew the answer, then I was already a Discordian. I answered Greg: "I don't know" -- he laughed, gave me a yellow card and said, "Welcome to the Club. You're now a Pope."

That meeting with Greg Hill inspired the creation of this Discordian Tarot deck. Using my crude cartoon skills, I mapped out my internal psychic processes during my chaotic twenties and meeting Greg and also, reading Bob's mind-bending books. When my deck was finished, I showed it to Greg Hill and he loved it. On the spur of the moment, I gave him the deck (the only one!), a gesture of generosity that I apparently forgot about until thirty-four years later when fellow Discordian Adam Gorightly contacted me. After Greg Hill passed away in 2000, Adam inherited Hill's massive Discordian archives which included my Discordian Tarot deck. Adam contacted me through the Discordian grapevine and asked me if I wanted my deck back. I said yes and he mailed it to me.

This Tarot is divided into the Major and Minor Arcades, not "arcanas". The 29 cards of the Minor Arcade includes "The Fool" plus four suits: Keys, Pillows, Trees and Books with seven cards assigned to each suit representing the seven chakras of Hindu spirituality. Though some of the 32 Major Arcade cards do correlate with some of the Major Arcana of traditional Tarot, this deck was made chiefly as a work of art -- rather than trying to mirror or replicate any occult tradition. I named each card to symbolize certain states of mind I was undergoing during my punk rock daze (1979-82; see photo/link below).

The underlined numbers near the bottom of this page all link to the 32 cards of the Major Arcade. At some point I may post the Minor Arcade, as well as my interpretations of the Major Arcade cards. Note: this deck is not for sale nor is it available for mass reproduction.

-Antero Alli

1980, Berkeley CA; performing in my
band "The Frozen Beauties"
(click image for details)

The Major Arcade

~ 00 through 10 ~

~ 11 through 21 ~

~ 22 through 00 ~