One very important magickal use of the Tarot is as a tool for scrying and astral projection. Scrying is a form of autohypnosis which induces psychically perceived visual images. Astral projection takes scrying one step further. This is a practice which involves the use of altered states of consciousness to turn inward, and travel through the paths of the mind, eventually coming ever closer to Spirit which lies beyond the more accessible levels of the Intellect. The spiritual forces manifest in the mind of the Magician, and operate through his/her mental archetypes. In working with the Higher Forces, the Magician tends to activate the Higher Archetypes, resulting in visions of gods and goddesses. The cards of the Tarot are the perfect vehicles for taking a mental or astral journey of this sort, providing a prepared image into which the reader may scry and travel.
In recent years there has been an explosion of a phenomenon called pathworking. In some cases this is nothing more than guided visualization. True "pathworking" is astral projection into one of the paths which connect the sephiroth on the Tree of Life. As this experience is entirely personal to the one performing it, guidance by another's personal vision is inappropriate to the technique we will describe here. While each Tarot card contains certain images and symbols which will appear in the actual working, each person's experience while scrying a card or traveling on a path is unique. Therefore the scrying ritual presented in this book contains a description of preliminary ritual procedures and a presentation of an astral projection that could be similar but not identical to what the reader might experience personally. This ritual will provide an outline and possible scrying adventure for this particular Tarot card, but the reader must to some extent let his/her own Higher Self aid in guiding visualizations of this sort. Here is the map, now follow the road.
THE RITUAL OF SCRYING THE TAROT
(1) Prepare the temple in the usual fashion. Remove the Second Key, the High Priestess from the deck. Put the rest of the cards away. Prepare a comfortable place to sit or lie down in the temple or sacred space area.
(2) Perform the Relaxation Ritual or take Ritual Bath.
(3) Perform the LBRP.
(4) Perform the BRH.
(5) Place the Second Key of the Tarot upon the Altar.
(6) With the Lotus Wand in hand say, "I, (magickal name), in the Divine name IAO, invoke Thee, thou Great Angel HRU who art set over the operations of this secret Wisdom. Make this talisman of the ROTA a true and accurate portal through which I may enter and partake of the knowledge of The High Priestess."
(7) Draw the Hexagram of Luna (the planet which rules the High Priestess) over the card and intone the names that go with it. Vibrate "ARARITA" while tracing the hexagram, "SHADDAI EL CHAI" while drawing the sigil of the Moon, and the letter "ALEPH" in the center.
(8) Draw the Hebrew letter Gimel in the Air above the card. See the letter in brilliant blue. Vibrate the name of the letter, "GIMEL." (Intone the name several times.)
(9) Place your hands beside the card or hold it up with both hands. With all your powers of concentration, look upon the card and comprehend it, consider all its meaning and symbolism.
(10) When your mind is steady upon the image, give the Sign of the Rending of the Veil and close your eyes, but keep the image of h 2.
the card clearly in your mind's eye. At this point you may sit or lie on the floor in a comfortable position, if you wish, but keep concentrating on the card.
(11) Maintain a disassociation from the surrounding room. The Tarot card of the High Priestess exists as a huge curtain before you. In your vision, part the curtain with the Sign of the Rending of the Veil. As the curtain is drawn aside, project your consciousness beyond your physical body and see within the symbol before you. As the scene opens up, look for particular details and objects which relate to the card of the High Priestess. If any strange beings or entities appear test their authenticity by tracing a pentagram before them and vibrating any of the Divine names of God, such as "EHEIEH." Monitor their responses. If they are angelic guides sent to aid you, they will respond favorably to your caution and answer you in some way.
You may find that if you are Scrying in the Spirit Vision, you will see objects reversed as in a mirror image. If instead you are projecting a ray of yourself astrally, you will perceive things as solid and three dimensional. The following paragraphs are examples of what scrying or astral projection on the card of the High Priestess could entail.
You step through the veil into a lush exotic landscape that feels somewhat Eastern in flavor. A figure stands before you, tall and impressive. You cannot see the figure's face or even be certain of the gender because a blue and silver hooded robe obscures the form. Instinctively you test the figure by tracing a pentagram in the air before it, and intoning the name of "EHEIEH." The cloaked form responds by giving the LVX signs, assuring you that you have indeed found a true guide. Telepathically you hear the guide's name, "Sandalphon." The guide seems feminine.
The sun overhead is brilliant. Although it is hot, the grassy land is fertile with small shrubs and nut-bearing trees. The air is sweetly scented with almond and aloe. The guide gestures invitingly toward the grove. You can't resist the urge to pick a few of the hazel and almond nuts which seem almost to drip from the small trees. A handful of the nuts find their way into your pocket.
Sandalphon beckons you on toward a sloped hillside to the east, inviting you to follow. Instinctively you know that somewhere beyond it the High Priestess is waiting. A sandy path leads over the hill, and you take it, leaving the pleasant valley behind.
The plants become less and less apparent as you walk up the slope. Upon reaching the top of the hill, you gaze out over what appears to be a vast desert. Undaunted and confident, you start to cross it, following your guide.
You walk for what seems to be miles, and begin to wonder if maybe this journey wasn't such a good idea after all. There are no plants, not even a cactus to cut open and drink bitter juices from. It is late afternoon now, and the sun's energy is dying but relentless. It is the time of the "Devil's Gate," when the dissipating solar energy takes with it the lives of the weak. You feel its drain upon your energy, as you begin to tire. You are hungry, and the thought of the almonds and hazel nuts in your pocket crosses your mind, but you are too thirsty to eat them.
Each step in the sand becomes more and more difficult. Exhaustion sets in and you stumble from weariness. Sandalphon keeps walking far in front of you now, seemingly indifferent to your plight. You call out for the guide, but Sandalphon disappears into the sweltering heat. As you lay in the hot sand trying to catch your breath, the journey seems much too hard to continue. How foolish it was to be so arrogant at the outset!
Suddenly you hear a noise and feel hot breath on the back of your neck. You look up into the soft brown eyes of a camel; its bridle-straps rubbing your arm. Grabbing the leather straps, you pull yourself to stand up. The animal has a fine-looking saddle of blue and silver leather, covered in moonstones and pearls. Somehow, the camel reminds you of Sandalphon, and you feel at ease once more. You climb into the saddle, and the journey continues, away from the setting sun.
The animal's pace is a steady stride which is reassuring. It seems to know exactly where it's going. As the light fades, the camel's hooves almost appear as if they hardly touch the ground at all, gliding over the sand instead. Peering ahead, you see that the beast is racing straight toward the edge of a cliff, overlooking a huge chasm. You cannot even see the other side of the gulf in the oncoming darkness. Without slowing, the camel takes a great leap off the edge of the cliff into absolute darkness.
Time seems to be suspended in that leap. You are uncertain if a second, a few minutes or several hours have passed. The only thing you are certain of is the blackness that surrounds you. You cannot even see the camel but you can feel it and hear its breathing. Both you and the animal seem to be weightless, as if floating through deep space. The world you used to know seems light years away.
Without warning, you land on the other side of the gulf but the camel does not even break stride. It is light again and appears to be morning, but it is a strange kind of light that you can feel inside your body as well as see. The landscape here is different, much less hot, but with many more types of trees and plants. A stream appears ahead and you dismount to take a long cool drink of pure water. Revived, you climb back on the animal which walks in the middle of the stream toward its source.
Ahead, there is a temple which marks the head of the stream. The temple is carved completely from moonstone. A great crescent-shaped row of white columns leads out from the temple, enclosing the stream which flows out of an aqueduct from under the pearl steps that lead up to the main temple chamber.
The camel stops at the foot of the building, where you dismount and walk up the steps, gazing at the marvelous structure. Then, remembering the faithful animal, you turn to call it, but the beast has disappeared, so you continue up the steps. When you reach the top, Sandalphon is there, waiting as if she had never deserted you. Turning, she leads you into the inner temple, the dwelling-place of the High Priestess.
The chamber is iridescent with the brilliance of moonstone. There are two great columns, one of moonstone and the other of obsidian. These pillars reach high toward the vaulted ceiling. Between them is a veil of shear blue cloth. Behind the veil is a seated female figure. You can barely make out her facial features. She is dressed in robes of blue and silver and she wears a large silver crescent on her brow. In her hands, she holds a blue and orange chalice of water, into which she gazes thoughtfully. You know now that you are in the presence of the the High Priestess. Although you do not wish to disturb her, she senses you and rises from her throne. She speaks.
"You who seek the High Priestess have found her. I have been known by many names: Diana, Hecate, Cybele, Artemis. I am the Uniting Intelligence; joining That which is Above, to That which is Below. I am the essence of Glory. I am the consummation of the Truth of individual spiritual events. I regulate the flow of life energy, from its One Pure Source to the lower realms of Creation. I
unveil my true self to none but the Wisdom of the Supernals."
As the High Priestess makes this address, you notice that the lower part of her body seems to extend itself into shape of an arrow; her feet resembling the arrowhead pointing down. Energy pulses downward from this arrowhead, and you realize that she is the source of the stream of cool water outside. She continues.
"I direct the current of the Waters of Creation which flows from its head, the eternal Crown. I nourish the lower branches of the Sacred Tree. I bring life and fertility to the Kingdom. I am the Chalice, the sacred vessel which holds and controls the flow of Life Power. I am eternal and inviolate. No matter how many forms are created through me, I remain unchanged and ever pure. My flow is never-ending, for I am the Priestess of the Silver Star. I govern the powers of Flux and Reflux. I manifest through Luna, the Moon, the Ship of the Sky. I control the tides and reflect the Solar light. Seek ever my Cup, for it is the receptacle of the Waters of Life and Light."
You thank the High Priestess for this knowledge and she gives you an affectionate nod. Then you reluctantly turn and follow your guide out of the chamber. When you reach the bottom of the pearl steps, you wish that you given the High Priestess something in return for her knowledge. Then you remember the hazel nuts in your pocket. Tenderly, you offer them by dropping them into the pure stream of water at the foot of the steps. These too will be empowered by the energy of the High Priestess, perhaps to take root in the natural cycle of Life.
You turn to face Sandalphon and find that she has vanished again, leaving the familiar camel in her place. You climb on board the animal once more and return the way you came, leaping across the blackness of the Abyss to the desert on the other side. The camel gallops effortlessly now across the not-so-forbidding desert. It stops at the top of the sloped hillside where you dismount and give the animal one last affectionate hug. Then you climb down toward the pleasant valley. Sandalphon is waiting for you, as before, but your eyes catch something new about the scene.
Six new saplings have broken ground since last you saw the hazel and almond grove. The leaves of all the trees and plants are wet from the passing of a slow, warm rain. All is as it should be in this fertile valley.
Before you, between two trees is the veil through which you passed at the onset of the journey. You turn to face Sandalphon with the knowledge that you will see her again on another journey soon. You thank her by tracing the symbol of the Rose Cross in the air before her. She responds by giving the LVX signs. Then you step through the curtain, giving the Sign of the Closing of the Veil (the reverse of the Opening Sign).
Bring your astral self back into your body and make yourself slowly aware of the physical room around you. Do not get up too quickly.
(12) Perform the LBRP.
(13) Perform the BRH.
(14) Declare the temple closed.
Any of the Tarot cards may be scryed using this method. The reader would be well advised to explore the entire Tree of Life using this technique. Start with the Major Arcana, work your way up the Tree starting with the 32nd Path of the Universe. The Small cards and the Court cards could also be astrally explored, by first invoking the Sephirotic, angelic and elemental energies associated with each particular card.
If at any time you lose the vision you are seeking, astrally draw the Hebrew letter Kaph for the aid of Jupiter, "The Lord of the Forces of Life." For truth in vision, appeal to the forces of Mercury by tracing the letter Beth. If your memory is in error, draw the Hebrew letter Tau and employ the help of Saturn, "The Great One of the Night of Time." In all cases, write down the results of your scrying or astral projection in a magickal diary so that you have a record of the event for future reference.
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