The Fives

Opposition, strife and struggle; war, obstacle to the thing in hand. Ultimate success or failure is otherwise shown.

The fives bring serious problems into all areas symbolized by the Elements. To Wands (Energy) the Fives bring quarrel and strife; to Cups (Love, Friendship) the Fives bring the destruction of relationships; to Swords (Sickness and Trouble) they bring certain defeat in a given matter and to Pentacles (Business and Money) they bring material hardship. Yet success or failure is shown by other cards in a divination. The Fives simply announce that a difficulty exists.

FIVE OF WANDS, Lord of Strife (Saturn in Leo).

Angels of the Decan: Vahaviah (¡T> 1 m) and Yelayel (iwb').

This is Geburah in Atziluth, the influence of Geburah in the World of Pure Spirit. Here the powerful effects of Saturn in Leo, a fire sign, are quarelling and strife. This card should be compared with the FIVE OF SWORDS, the Lord of Defeat. The nature of Wands is a continually outpouring force, so the Saturn influence here is agitating and disturbing rather than signaling a contest completed. Crowley calls this a "volcanic energy."80 His card shows the Golden Down wand of a Chief Adept crossed by the Phoenix Wand of the Adeptus Major of Geburah and by the Lotus Wand of the Adeptus Minor of Tiphareth. This card symbolizes the nature of the energies rather than the conditon of discord shown by Waite.

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FIVE OF CUPS, Lord of Loss in Pleasure (Mars in Scorpio). Angels of the Decan: Livoyah 1 and Pehilyah (n»t?no).

This is Geburah in Briah, the influence of Geburah in the Mental World. Mars in the water Sign Scorpio produces an extremely emotional effect. Loss of that which is loved is symbolized by the once-full Cups on the Golden Dawn and Crowley cards, and by those overturned at the feet of Waite's solitary figure. The watery nature of this card is totally disconsonant with the fiery nature of Geburah, and means the loss of pleasure. This is also one of the cards which can mean death if the cards around it are supportive of this interpretation. It may mean the death of a loved one, not the querant himself.

One element of the Crowley card which may seem peculiar is the inverted Pentagram, associated with the Devil and evil generally. It is used here to mean the triumph of matter over spirit.

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FIVE OF SWORDS, Lord of Defeat (Venus in Aquarius). Angels of the Decan: Aniel and Chaamiah (rPayn).

This is Geburah in Yetzirah, the influence of Geburah in the Astral World. This card (with the Nine and Ten of Swords) is among the most destructive in the deck. A relationship has already been noted between the Sword of Geburah and the Rose of Venus which is also the Rose of the Rose Cross. They are closely related energies, Mars being the consort of Venus in mythology. What we are shown in the Golden Dawn card is that when the Sword of Geburah sweeps through the Air of Yetzirah, the growth energies of Venus are no match for it, and the petals of the Rose are scattered, literally, to the winds. Crowley's card shows this same dispersion of forces behind the Swords in the shape of the inverted Pentagram. Waite illustrates the divinatory meaning of the card: defeat, loss, failure, contest finished and decided against the person.

FIVE OF PENTACLES, Lord of Material Trouble (Mercury in Taurus). Angels of the Decan: Mibahiah (n'n^n) and Pooyal (^Nna).

This is Geburah in Assiah, the influence of Geburah in the Material World. Here a distinction should be understood between material trouble and

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the ruin of all things implied by the TEN OF SWORDS. The natural structure brought into Taurus by the energies of Mercury is thrown off by Geburah's influence at a higher level. The result, in a divination, is loss of profession and monetary resources as is suggested by Waite's rather trite and cliché illustration of figures "out in the cold." The more subtle implications of the card are seen in the Golden Dawn version, where four roses are breaking apart. This symbolism is amplified by Crowley, whose once more inverted Pentagram carries the symbols of the five Tattvas, geometric forms meaning Fire, Water, Air, Earth and Spirit. In the Hindu system, these are the underlying currents of matter, here shown to be totally unstable in their reversal.

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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