Sets Of Paths

Reading Tarot Cards Revealed

Reading Tarot Cards Revealed

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Another way to consider the Keys is in terms of equilibrium and opposites (Figure 25). Here THE FOOL is viewed as the opposite of THE MAGICIAN, or THE CHARIOT the opposite of THE HIEROPHANT on the basis of their position on the Tree of Life. It is important to note that position is the consideration here, since some authorities establish card opposites in other ways.

Beyond Gematria as a means for examining the Tree's internal workings, one begins to look for Paths that are related in special ways. In this regard, we have already suggested that certain sets of (three) Paths define aspects of the Self, i.e., the Supreme Spiritual Self, the Higher Self and the Personality. Other sets of Paths are more obvious, such as those of the Flaming Sword (Figure 20), where each card is important to the process of emanation of the Universe.

Paths Kabbalah

basis of their position on the Tree of Life. It is important to note that position is the consideration here, since some authorities establish card opposites in other ways.

One of the most potent sets of Paths is that of the Middle Pillar and involving THE HIGH PRIESTESS, TEMPERANCE and THE UNIVERSE (Figure 26). What this diagram says, in essence, is that through the experience of three separate types of energy, we may attain knowledge of the Ultimate Godhead.

Middle Pillar Exercise

Figure 26. The cards on the Middle Pillar. There are only three cards which are actually on the middle pillar, but to travel these Paths means also to "cross through" the potent energies symbolized by three other cards. Note also that the Path of the High Priestess extends through the Abyss.

Figure 26. The cards on the Middle Pillar. There are only three cards which are actually on the middle pillar, but to travel these Paths means also to "cross through" the potent energies symbolized by three other cards. Note also that the Path of the High Priestess extends through the Abyss.

If we apply the definitions of the Thirty Two Paths of Wisdom (Figure 27) in the same way, we find these three major Paths described, in order of their progress toward the Godhead, as: The Administrative Intelligence (THE UNIVERSE), the organizing structure behind our material environment; The Intelligence of Probation (TEMPERANCE), perhaps the most difficult Path on the entire Tree of Life, one of Spiritual Alchemy and of the dreadful "Dark Night of the Soul," leading to knowing immersion of the Personality into the consciousness of the Higher Self; The Uniting Intelligence (THE HIGH PRIESTESS), the Path by which all that has appeared to be separated from the Godhead is re-united.

The point here is the extent to which the ancient Qabalistic documents amplify our appreciation of the Tarot and vice-versa.

Thirty Two Paths
Figure 27. The Paths from the Thirty-Two Paths of Wisdom

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The Illustrated Key To The Tarot

The Illustrated Key To The Tarot

The pathology of the poet says that the undevout astronomer is mad the pathology of the very plain man says that the genius is mad and between these extremes, which stand for ten thousand analogous excesses, the sovereign reason takes the part of a moderator and does what it can. I do not think that there is a pathology of the occult dedications, but about their extravagances no one can question, and it is not less difficult than thankless to act as a moderator regarding them.

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