Until recently, one of the advantages that BOTA (Builders of the Adytum) members had over the Golden Dawn is that they could hand color a set of pre-outlined Tarot cards which helped them establish the symbolism of the cards firmly in their minds; with the publication of "The Classical Golden Dawn Tarot: An Historic Deck In Black And White" by Richard Dudschus and David Sledzinski, Golden Dawn members can also engage in the practice of coloring their own Tarot cards.
Originally, the members of Golden Dawn were meant to hand-draw their own deck of Tarot cards. There were several reasons for this practice. The primary one is that the Tarot deck that Golden Dawn used was a truly esoteric deck; Golden Dawn members were sworn to keep its symbolism and images secret. The symbolism of the Golden Dawn Tarot tied into the symbols and concepts studied by the students of the system, and the cards were used both in private and lodge rituals (divinations, initiations, pathworkings, etc.). Members of Golden Dawn, and its offshoots, took their oaths of secrecy so seriously that it was not until 1978 that a published version of the Golden Dawn Tarot deck became available. Unfortunately, the first published version of the deck, done by Robert Wang, was less than satisfactory.
To read the rest of my review of the Classical Golden Dawn Tarot, click here.