03 Aug 2018
KABBALISTIC FRACTAL MAGIC TAROT BY KYLEIGH MITUZAS
I first became interested in tarot at the age of 13. I went to the mall and walked into a Spencer’s Gifts and came out with my first Rider Waite deck. I was hooked. As my knowledge of the tarot progressed, a normal deck no longer fulfilled my needs. I started learning the pathways on the tree of life and the different kabbalistic spheres of the worlds. I began reading kabbalistically and I wanted a deck that suited me. Sure there’s already other decks out there that supply this demand. But if you’re an artist you might as well create your own deck.
My need to learn graphic design was so that I could express myself. I wanted to put this deck out 10 years ago but my first attempt was a poor resolution version that couldn’t be printed. I was heartbroken. I spent the last 9 years working for clients and never having the time or dedication there needs to be to undertake a project like this. I have been working on this particular version of the deck for four years.
I am not publishing a minor arcana. If you want that experience, I suggest you pick up an oversized pack of regular playing cards and pull out the jokers. This deck is specifically for working with learning the 22 letters that planetary and astrology references to the tarot. You can also use them as an oracle deck by pulling out one card.
I am publishing a free pdf booklet for the meanings and descriptions of the cards that are different from the blog. I used the Rider Waite descriptions below. These are more general meaning. These may also be used in any type of Jung style readings for psychotherapy through ancient symbols.
If you would like to get a canvas or metal print of one of the cards for your home or temple, please contact me to let me know which one and I will charge the cost of the print plus shipping.
THE FOOL (BABE OF THE ABYSS)
Aleph, The hour glass, The Key, The Moon, The Keyhole in the Babe’s head are all symbolic of the fools path on the tree of life.
Pisces going to Aries, on the other hand Uranus/Mercury standing for curiosity, spontanity, madness
Element: the Air
Tree of life: Kether going to Chokmah
Number: 0 as nothing and begin of it all
The Fool is the symbol of true innocence, a perfect state of joy and freedom, the sure feeling to be one with the spirit of life, at any time.
The Fool has the number 0, for someone ready to go in any direction, open to all possibilities. He belongs nowhere, has no past, but an infinite future. Every moment is a new beginning. In arabic letters the 0 has the shape of an egg, the symbol for the origin of life. The Fool is change, motion and the readiness to jump into life, with no cares ever. The Fool knows no difference between possibility and reality, the zero means a total lack of hope and fear, the Fool suspects and plans nothing. He reacts directly to the current situation, nothing is calculated, nothing is hidden.
In most decks the Fool is shown with an animal, as a symbol of nature, the animal soul in perfect harmony with the spirit that just follows its instincts. The Fool is courage, optimism and the belief in life and himself. When times are hard, and we suffer the pressure of ‘being reasonable’ or denying our instincts, the Fool reminds us that our inner person knows best what to do. ‘Always trust your instincts’…
In its negative aspect, the card can say that its qualities are blocked or reversed. Irresponsibility, mad projects, recklessness – the careless human who covers himself with some artificial madness, for distrusting his instincts and fearing standstill and silence.
The fractal on the background is the green and black space that I see in my third eye when I imagine this card. The hour glass is a reminder of the limited time we have in this dimension while the zero represents the illusion of time that our subconscious mind lives through. The key represents unlocking your greatest potential and the keyhole is symbolic of the third eye opening. To let go of the material world.
Zero The “Green Man” of the Spring Festival, “April Fool,” The Holy Ghost … This card is attributed to the letter Aleph, which means an Ox, but by its shape the Hebrew letter (so ….. This babe is in an egg of green, which is evidently the symbol of the Mother. … And this is the great Mystery of the Supernals that are beyond the Abyss.
FOOL TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Beginnings, innocence, spontaneity, a free spirit
Reversed: Naivety, foolishness, recklessness, risk-taking
FOOL TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The Fool is numbered 0, the number of unlimited potential, and does not actually have a specific place in the sequence of the Tarot cards. The Fool can come either at the beginning of the Major Arcana or at the end. The Major Arcana is often considered as the Fool’s journey through life and as such, he is ever present and therefore needs no number.
The Fool is shown at the beginning of his journey with unlimited potential. The sun rising up behind him represents the beginning of his journey. He is facing north-west, the direction of the unknown. He is looking upwards, toward the sky, or Spirit. He is about to step off a cliff into the material world but is he prepared? He has all the tools and resources he needs in the bag on his staff but he has not opened the bag yet. The white rose in his left hand represents purity and innocence. He has a guardian in the little white dog who will protect him throughout his journey but who will also push him to learn the lessons the Fool came here to learn. The mountains behind the Fool represent the realms of Spirit that he has just left and will spend his life trying to regain.
Beth, DNA, Infinity, Colossus of Rhodes, Apollo, The Rose, The Tools of the magician.
Sun/Mercury in Aries; the sun for power and charisma, Mercury for agility and dexterity
Tree of life: From Kether to Binah
Number: 1 as symbol for unity (male)
One. The background is a solar fractal spiral passing through the sun to the pure being. A white rose represents the seed of the male magician.
Of all the magical and mystical virtues, of all the graces of the Soul, of all the attainments of the Spirit, none has been so misunderstood, even when at all apprehended, as Silence. The Magician represents consciousness, action and creation. He’s the symbol for the idea of manifestation – the possibility of making an idea come true. He gives meaning and direction to life, and he reminds us that the emotional and creative powers of our souls must have a physical basis to be of real use. Powers unused are powers non-existent, we have to set them free in order to use them, and to gain and renew. The Magician is related to the Mercurius of alchemy.
The Magician shows that we’re aware of the power in life, he can be a symbol for all the creative skills and ideas inside. Most people don’t really act, they just react, being driven from one situation to the next. The Magician tells that a power is ready to use as soon as it is recognized, to see and go the own way.
The negative side of the card could mean that the free run of energy is blocked, that we can feel the enery but can’t use it. This could mean fear and restlessness, even the fear to go insane. Energy tends to explode when not finding a outlet to vent. Finally there’s a negative aspect in the abuse of energy.
MAGICIAN TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Power, skill, concentration, action, resourcefulness
Reversed: Manipulation, poor planning, latent talents
MAGICIAN TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The Magician is associated with the planet, Mercury and carries with it skill, logic, and intellect. The number of the Magician is one, the number of beginnings. The Magician is the bridge between the world of the spirit and the world of humanity. His right hand holds a staff raised toward the sky and his left hand points to the earth. He takes the power of the Universe and channels it through his own body and directs it to the physical plane. Above the Magician’s head is the symbol of eternity and around his waist is a snake biting its own tail, another symbol of eternity. His magical table holds all four suits of the Tarot, each of which represents one of the four primordial elements of the alchemists – earth, air, fire and water. These symbolize the appropriate use of mind, heart, body and soul in the process of manifestation. The Magician’s robe is white, symbolizing the purity and innocence found in the Fool but his cloak is red, representing worldly experience and knowledge. In the bed of flowers at his feet this duality is repeated in the mix of pure white lilies and thorny red roses.
THE HIGH PRIESTESS
Lilith, Gimel, The Path between the pillars, The center of the lotus.
Moon in Scorpio in house 12, the moon as symbol for the lunar consciousness, Scorpio standing for the powers of the unconscious. House 12 stands for the mysteries.
Tree of life: The connection between Kether and Tiphareth
Number: 2 as the symbol of duality (female)
Two The High Priestess represents the deeper, more subtile aspect of the female archetype – the darkness, the mystery, psychic power, the might of the moon to enlighten the subconscious. The High Priestess is silence, passivity, containing a power of her own. Only when retiring from the world, can we allow our subconscious to rise, listen to our inner voice and recognize our spiritual power.
HIGH PRIESTESS TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Intuition, Higher powers, mystery, subconscious mind
Reversed: Hidden agendas, need to listen to inner voice
HIGH PRIESTESS TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The High Priestess is also known as Persephone, Isis, the Corn Maiden and Artemis. She sits at the gate before the great Mystery, as indicated by the Tree of Life in the background. She sits between the darkness and the light, represented by the pillars of Solomon’s temple, which suggests it is she who is the mediator of the passage into the depth of reality. The tapestry hung between the pillars keeps the casual onlookers out and allows only those initiated to enter. The pomegranates on the tapestry are sacred to Persephone. They are a symbol of duty (because Persephone ate a pomegranate seed in the underworld which forced her to return every year). The blue robe the Priestess is wearing is a symbol of knowledge. She is wearing the crown of Isis symbolising the Triple Goddess. The solar cross on her breast is a symbol of balance between male and female.
In her hand is a scroll, a representative of the exoteric and the esoteric teachings and higher knowledge. The moon under her left foot shows her dominion over pure intuition. The palm indicates fertility of the mind and the cube on which she sits is the earth. The planet associated with the High Priestess is the Moon.
Daleth, The Bee, Isis with Horus, The Key, The Dove, The Entrance to the Stargate Portal.
Venus in Taurus, standing for fertility and growth, the earth rules the Taurus
Tree of life: The axis between Chokmah and Binah
Number: 3 as the combination of the contrasts to a unity (synthesis, harmony)
Three. The Empress is the friendlier, more approachable aspect of the female archetype. She stands for maternity, love and mercy; at the same time she’s a symbol for sexuality and emotion. She is pure feeling, absolutely unintellectual, but basically life. The Empress is the Great Mother, representing the beginning of all life. She is the power of nature, causing change, renewal, major plans.
The Empress also stands for passion, a phase in which we cope life on an emotional and joyful basis, rather than on the thoughtful. This could mean great satisfaction, but in a improper context, when actually more analysis is needed. The Empress can also stand for a reflective, emotional attitude, refusing to accept reality. It also could stand for a person who is greedy for joy and abundance when actually just more self-control is needed.
EMPRESS TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Fertility, femininity, beauty, nature, abundance
Reversed: Creative block, dependence on others
EMPRESS TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The Empress is the archetypal Earth Mother, the Anima, the Feminine Principle, Demeter, Freyja, Isis and the Goddess of Fertility. Ruled by Venus, the planet of love, creativity, fertility, art, harmony, luxury, beauty and grace.
The main feature of this card is the Empress herself, a full-figured woman with blond hair and a peaceful and calm aura about her. On her head she wears a crown of stars, showing her connection with the mystical realm of angels and fairies. She is dressed in a patterned robe of pomegranates, symbolic of fertility and is seated upon a luxurious array of cushions and flowing red velvet with the symbol of Venus emblazoned upon it.
Heh, Mars, Aries, Three All Seeing Eyes, President Lincoln sitting on his throne.
Sun in Capricorn, standing for responsibility, order, security, continuity
Tree of life: The axis Netzach – Yesod
Number: 4 as physical reality, basic structure, orientation
Four. Trumps III and IV represent Parents in their archetypical way. Just as the Empress stands for Mother Nature, the Emperor is the social word, the structure of civilization, a symbol for its law and order, may they be good or bad, but the power behind them. He is the abstraction of establishment, its stability and security.
In its negative aspects the card can represent the force of bad law in a society where stability is rated higher than morals or ethic. Once law and order are established as an institution, a bad emperor can turn out to be a disaster. And even at his best the Emperor is limited – he puts restrictions and borders to the spontaneity of spirit and nature.
In a more personal view the Emperor might stand for a time of stability and structure, linear thinking and discipline. Yet we can’t live without it, too many of those attributes will only lead to rational despotism and mental poverty.
EMPEROR TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Authority, father-figure, structure, solid foundation
Reversed: Domination, excessive control, rigidity, inflexibility
EMPEROR TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The Emperor is the complement to the Empress. He is the Masculine Principle, the Animus and the Patriarch. He represents power and authority, and his stern attitude is quite a departure from the sensual beauty of the Empress. The Emperor has a long, white beard, a symbol of his experience. As an archetype, it is common to see masculine figures of authority or father figures with long white beards. It suggests that this man has acquired years of wisdom and experience and he is worthy of listening to because he has seen first-hand the consequences of his actions.
Behind his throne are barren mountains and the throne itself is decorated with four rams’ heads, representing intellectual heights, determination, action, initiative and leadership. The ram is also a symbol of Aries, the astral ruler of the Emperor. In his right hand, the Emperor holds an Ankh, the Egyptian symbol of Life, and in his left is an orb representing the world over which he rules. The background and the Emperor’s clothing symbolize his passion and energy for life and the challenges it offers.
The Priests of the Dogon, the crossed keys, taurus symbol, the cone heads, and the apple of chaos, Vau.
Sun in Sagittarius as a symbol for the teacher of inner values, Jupiter in Pisces as the vision of eternity
Tree of life: From Chokmah to Chesed
Number: 5 as quintessence, the power that exceeds the four elements
Five. The Hierophant is a symbol for a world of belief and confession, may it be a church, a sect or an occult society. He’s the pope, the druid or the High Priest in a system of creeds and dogmas. He represents the religious and intellectual tradition of a person, and may be the one the person is born to it or possibly the one who has chosen it by himself.
In the positive aspect, the Hierophant represents the search for knowledge and illumination, the desire to study creed and dogma instead of simply accepting them, to research and achieve further development. It also stands for the deep fulfillment someone can find when really trusting their own beliefs.
In a negative view, the Hierophant can stand for bigotry, the blind faith in dogma, intolerance towards everything different from the own confession. It can also mean gullibility, running to any kind of new belief just because the traditional one is suddenly considered boring or unsatisfying.
HIEROPHANT TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Religion, group identification, conformity, tradition, beliefs
Reversed: Restriction, challenging the status quo
HIEROPHANT TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The Hierophant is known as the High Priest in some decks. He is the masculine counterpart to the High Priestess. He is also known as Chiron, the Pope and the Shaman. The Hierophant is ruled by Taurus.
The Hierophant is represented by a religious figure, sitting within a formal church environment. He is wearing three elaborate vestments of his office that represent the three worlds. The crown he is wearing has three tiers to. His right hand is raised in benediction, the same hand the Magician has raised. While the Magician was taking raw power from the Universe and manifesting it on the material plane, the Hierophant channels that power through society (as in the religions of the world). The triple sceptre is another symbol of his dominion over the three worlds. The crossed keys represent a balance between the conscious and subconscious minds and unlock the mysteries. Before him kneel two initiates. The Hierophant’s task is to bring the two initiates into the church so that they can take up their appointed roles. This symbolizes entry into all types of institutions where there is a shared group identity. These could include schools, clubs, teams, companies and societies.
THE LOVERS (THE TWINS)
Zain, Gemini, Pyramid and Capstone, Romulus and Remus, The double headed phoenix.
Venus and Mars – on a higher level Sun and Moon – as the combination of the contrasts
Tree of life: From Binah to Tiphareth
Number: 6 as combination of contrasts and their mutual penetration
Six. The Lovers are one of the most complex cards in the Major Arcana, standing for the love in common and the alchemy of the universe. The trump represents the power of life, the creative love, which can be quite impressive, but also destructive when one happens to disregard the fire of instinct, burning down rationalism.
The card also represents a decision, the farewell to a former way of life and the full acceptance of love uncompromising. It doesn’t necessarily mean that the ‘love’ is a person that you tie your knots to with fancy tungsten wedding bands – it can be a passion, a desire, or even a profession, like going to sea or working with horses. Many people who lead an adapted, settled life actually have deep desires and hidden wishes, that they don’t dare show, that they constantly fight back, suppressing their own happiness.
The Lovers can mean that someone should be honest, make a clear decision for this love, the fulfilling of a wish, of a desire, and stand by it. Apart from this, the Lovers can say that a peaceful combination of existing contrasts or contradictions is a better solution than any confrontation – diplomacy instead of war.
LOVERS TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Love, union, relationships, values alignment, choices
Reversed: Disharmony, imbalance, misalignment of values
LOVERS TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The sign associated with the Lovers is Gemini. The two figures in the Lovers card are blessed and protected by the angel in the clouds above them. Angels, in general, represent the refinement of earthly desires. This angel, in particular, is Raphael, the angel of Air. One of the associations of Air is communication, necessary for a healthy relationship. The purple cloak on the angel represents royalty, a symbol of how important communication is. The sun shines brightly over the couple, bringing warmth and security. The earth at their feet is green and fertile and suggests life and happiness. The snake in the fruit-laden tree behind the woman suggests the story of Adam and Eve, the fall of humanity from grace, and the temptations of the world. The snake is also a symbol of the senses. The flames behind the man represent the flames of passion, indicating the primary concern of the man. There are twelve flames, representing the twelve zodiac signs, the symbol of time and eternity. The man looks to the woman, who looks to the angel, indicating the path of the conscious to the subconscious to the super-conscious, or from physical desire to emotional needs to spiritual concerns. The mountain is a phallic symbol, while the water is a feminine symbol, indicating balance between the two.
Note: The Tarot card meaning description is based on the Rider Waite cards.
Cheth, The Grail, Cancer, Eye.
Mars in connection with Sun or Mercury; Mars as symbol of enforcement combines with Sun as symbol for will or Mercury as the symbol of the way
Tree of life: The way from Binah to Geburah
Number: 7 as the number of earthly and divine harmony (3+4), destiny, motion
Seven. The Chariot stands for combined powers, ready to move forward. It represents the dynamic principle and the human will to proceed, the ability to use the powers of life and keep the outer and inner balance.
The Chariot shows a strong will, a strong personality, and at its best, victory and success. But it also is a symbol for controversial power, for contradictions that are not solved, but just controlled. In this, the trump also warns of overestimation and recklessness. With every new venture or beginning one should check carefully whether the desired goal is compatible with one’s life and inner self.
Additionally, the Chariot is a symbol for the armor we build up when moving forward in the process of self-assertion. It also alludes to the danger that we might mix this armor with our actual personality.
So a negative aspect of the Chariot might involve understanding that the way of armed power isn’t always the right one, that the controversial power inside may to be reconciled with one other, and not just controlled and suppressed.
CHARIOT TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Control, will power, victory, assertion, determination
Reversed: Lack of control and direction, aggression
CHARIOT TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The Chariot is associated with the astrological sign of Cancer. He sits within a canopy of six-pointed stars, representing the celestial influences at work in this Tarot card. The crescent moons on the man’s shoulders are outward facing to refer to the formative world. The symbols on his tunic are alchemical symbols, representing the spiritual transformation of man. The square signifies earth, a sign of strength of will. The laurel and star crown indicate the highest attainment of man in spiritual evolution.
The wings on the Chariot represent inspiration and the Hindu sign of the union of positive and negative. The black and white sphinxes have the same meaning. The Charioteer holds no reins, just the wand from the Magician card. He controls through strength of will in the same way the Magician does. The city is behind him, indicating he has turned his back on civilization and materialism in order to seek spiritual matters.
The wagon wheel, phi, teth.
Venus in Leo – the creative development of passion leads to enjoyment and fulfilment
Tree of life: The connection between Chesedand Geburah
Eight. The Passion is the step into the second decade of the Major Arcana, the point where the journey into the inner depth begins. In other decks, this trump is called ‘The Power’, a symbol for the mastery of our own animal side. Crowley named the card ‘Lust’ – and most people don’t really think of mastering their inner animal, but enjoy it full tilt…
In a combination of both, the animal side shouldn’t be ‘mastered’ in the meaning of ‘surpressed’, nor should it be let out to ‘romp around’. It should not be ignored, but accepted as a natural part of oneself. In that manner, one will not only be able to profit from its instinctive natural power, but also to save the power needed to ‘master’ it.
The Passion implies vitality, energy and power. The card tells us to use these riches. In most aspects of life, an endeavor will have much more success when passion is put into it.
STRENGTH TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Strength, courage, patience, control, compassion
Reversed: Weakness, self-doubt, lack of self-discipline
STRENGTH TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
Under a golden sky, a woman gently pats a lion on its forehead and lower jaw. The woman gazes down at the lion with a peaceful smile on her face and appears to be successfully taming this wild beast. The fact that Strength is represented by a woman indicates that this card is not focused on pure physical strength. She has the infinity symbol above her head, the same symbol seen in the Magician. Her white robe is that of the innocent Fool, indicating a purity of spirit. The blue mountain in the background is the same phallic symbol seen in the Lovers. The lion is a symbol of our animal passions and desires. The lion itself is sticking out his tongue. Animals that are preparing to bite do not stick their tongues out. This lion is happy to submit and surrender to the woman. The woman overcomes the lion with a quiet strength that can only come from within. Her left arm represents mental effort, while the right arm represents physical effort. Her right arm is merely holding, while the left arm is exerting all the pressure. She wears a belt and crown of flowers and stands unprotected in an open green field. The crown on her head represents the fullest, most beautiful expression of nature and transient life. The sign associated with the Strength card is Leo.N
THE HERMIT (TRIBUTE TO FRANK BAUM)
Yod, Virgo symbols.
Saturn as the keeper of the gate, or Saturn in Aquarius, standing for the search of wisdom and the keeping of independence
Tree of life: From Chesed to Tiphareth
Number: 9 as the number going back into itself (3 x 3)
Nine. The Hermit represents retirement from the outside world, introversion into the inner self, listening to the inner voice and caring for the inner self. He requires retreat from any ‘high life’ and loud company, and stands for a time of self-reflection and self-realization.
For most people, the silent loneliness of the Hermit appears unattractive, but behind the Hermit is the wisdom of the High Priestess. You cannot listen to your inner voices while having a party. In its negative aspect, the Hermit could mean being afraid of others or of life. When the retreat turns out to be a runaway, the loneliness can turn into a jail.
HERMIT TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Soul-searching, introspection, being alone, inner guidance
Reversed: Isolation, loneliness, withdrawal
HERMIT TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The Hermit stands alone on the top of a mountain with a lantern in his hand. Mountains typically symbolize achievement, growth, and accomplishment. The Hermit has attained his spiritual pinnacle and is ready to share his knowledge with others. He is also continuing the path he has chosen, committed to his goal of ultimate awareness. The star in the lantern is a six-pointed star (the Seal of Solomon, a symbol of wisdom). The staff carried by the Hermit is the patriarch’s staff, a symbol of the narrow path of initiation and an emblem of power and authority. It represents the Hermit’s ability to use his isolation and the knowledge he has gained as a tool upon his path to reach even higher levels of awareness. The staff is in the Hermit’s left hand, the hand associated with the subconscious mind. The snow at his feet represents the heights of spiritual attainment. He wears the grey cloak of invisibility. His secrets are not for everyone, only for those earnestly seeking them and those willing to climb the heights to wisdom. The astrological correspondence for this card is Virgo and the number 9 signifies accomplishment, wisdom, the attainment of goals, as well as the search for truth.
THE WHEEL OF FORTUNE
Kaph, Jupiter and Sagittarius, Earth, Fire, Water and Air. Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto – the masters of Karma
Tree of life: The axis Chesed – Netzach
Number: 10 as symbol for perfection, the cross sum is 1 (the Magician)
TEN. The Wheel of Fortune is a symbol of destiny and destination, of good luck and bad luck, of the ups and downs of life and fate. Everything is in motion, turning and floating, constantly changing, accidental and uncontrollable.
The trump also represents the need to be careful, to realize and recognize the vaguarities of life, to accept the fact that fate is nothing what we could have done, but the result of what we already did. Today is the result of the past, future will be the sum of past and today, and no matter how accurately we plan, the Wheel of Fortune will mix up light and shadow.
Whether the Wheel of Fortune is positive or negative is not a matter of happenstance or events in the first place; but rather of the way we will deal with the results, arrange our lives with the unchangeable and work on what we might be able to change – and of course of our ability to realize facts.
WHEEL OF FORTUNE TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Good luck, karma, life cycles, destiny, a turning point
Reversed: Bad luck, negative external forces, out of control
WHEEL OF FORTUNE TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The Wheel of Fortune is highly symbolic. The angel in the top left corner is Aquarius, the eagle is Scorpio, the lion is Leo and the bull is Taurus. These are the four fixed signs of the Zodiac but all have wings signifying stability amidst movement and change. The book they each have in their hands is the Torah, representing wisdom. On the wheel itself are the Hebrew letters IHVH (Yod Heh Vau Heh), the unpronounceable name of God. Interspersed with these letters are TORA (read anti-clockwise) or TARO (read clockwise) which also translates to TAROT when you return to the spot where you started. The snake descending on the left side of the Wheel is the Egyptian god Typhon, the god of evil. The snake also represents the life force descending into the material world. The Anubis rising on the right side of the Wheel is Hermes, a symbol of intelligence, wisdom ascending or our shadow selves. The Sphinx on the top of the wheel represents life’s riddles. The middle wheel contains the alchemical symbols for mercury, sulphur, water and salt – the building blocks of life and the four elements – and represents formative power. The outer circle represents the material world. The eight spokes in the wheel represent the Universal radiant energy, as well as the eight Sabbats of the year. The blue background represents wisdom.
The planet of this card is Jupiter, the planet of opportunity, growth, success, and expansion. The number 10 is a higher octave of the number 1, empowering the qualities of the 1.
Lamed, Venus, Libra.
Venus in Libra, standing for fairness and justice, with a clear aspect to Saturn
Tree of life: The connection between Geburah and Tiphareth
Number: 11 as the number of perfection and balance – justice and adjustment
Eleven. The Adjustment is a symbol for the balance of contrasts, complementing one another and also building up room and time. She combines the High Priestess and the Magician. Both are connected – true, conscious action results from realization, wisdom is based on action. The principle of activity completes itself with the passivity of inner reflection, the adjustment being the balance in between.
Another common name of this trump is ‘Justice’ – the card tells one to be righteous in all aspects of our life, to ignore, suppress or prefer none if need be. Only when we have an objective view of all and accept them, can we can find inner balance and silence.
Therefore, the Adjustment stands for uncompromising honesty and objectivity, the realization of cause and effect, background and consequence.
JUSTICE TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Justice, fairness, truth, cause and effect, law
Reversed: Unfairness, lack of accountability, dishonesty
JUSTICE TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
Justice is ruled by Libra and the card number is 11. The figure of Justice sits in her chair, cloaked in red and holding a sword in her right hand and scales in her left. She wears a crown with a small square on it representing well-ordered thoughts. Notice the clasp holding the cloak together. The square is the law protecting the circle and the eternal state of oneness within us all. The sword is double-edged, cutting both ways, signifying impartiality. It is point-up, signifying victory. The sword in her right hand demonstrates the logical, well-ordered mindset necessary to dispense fair justice. The scales are in her left, intuitive hand, showing that logic must be balanced by the intuition. A little white shoe pops out from beneath her cloak, reminding us of the spiritual consequences of our actions. The purple cloth draped behind her signifies compassion and the grey pillars represent the constraints of the physical world.
THE HANGED MAN (THE SACRAMENT)
Mem, Neptune, Pisces.
Uranus as neutralization and inversion, Neptune as spirit of sacrifice, the 12. house as a symbol for metamorphosis through isolation and knowledge
Tree of life: From Geburah to Hod
Number: 12 – the perfect number, symbol of the zodiac, 3 x 4
The Hanged Man is a symbol for the turning points in life, showing up a need to stop and assess a situation. We’re hanging in the air until we find a new view of the things around us, a proper way to rearrange or restart.
But the Hanged Man is a ‘silent’ card – there’s no pressing need for change. No big change is waltzing towards us – we can peacefully keep on hanging and complaining. The Hanged Man just shows that we’re just ‘hanging’, he requires a new viewpoint, and sometimes a lot of patience.
In its positive aspect, the card shows the need for a time of consideration, the forced relaxation gives the opportunity to relax and reflect, to sort thoughts and ideas and find a new way to cope with a situation.
Twelve. The Hanged Man has a sunflower as the fractal background. The golden phi radiates from the seed pattern of the flower. The seed is the sacrament of the circle of light/life. The sun and earth create a planetary pendulum where the moon casts the shadow. This represents the suspension of ego. Odin hangs from a cross upside down. The cross is crowned with a serpent. The serpent denotes wisdom. The mushroom is mana the body of the sacrament. Through death or death posture awareness seeds. One side of the gates is Sekmet, warrior lioness of the Egyptians that was sent to exterminate the human race. The other guardian is Horus who holds the book of life. This card represents the purge and catharsis.
HANGED MAN TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Suspension, restriction, letting go, sacrifice
Reversed: Martyrdom, indecision, delay
HANGED MAN TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The Hanged Man shows a man suspended, upside-down, from the living World Tree, rooted in the underworld and supporting the heavens. Given the serene expression on his face, it is believed he is hanging on the tree of his own will. His right foot is bound to the tree but his left foot remains free, bent at the knee and tucked in behind his right leg. His arms are bent, with hands held behind his back, forming an inverted triangle. The man is wearing red pants representing human passion and the physical body, a blue coat for knowledge, and yellow shoes representing his high ideals. Around the Hanged Man’s head is a bright yellow halo showing spiritual attainment, with the grey background suggesting invisibility (a good reminder to not flaunt your spirituality). This is the card of ultimate surrender, of being suspended in time and of martyrdom and sacrifice to the greater good. This is the archetype to meditate on to help break old patterns of behaviour and bad habits that restrict you.
The Hanged Man’s number is 12 – a higher octave of the number 3, representing careful planning and orderly growth leading to spiritual development. 1 (beginning) + 2 (the reasoning force) = 3 (the product of rebirth). The ruling planet is Neptune, the planet of self-sacrifice and idealism.
Mars, Nun, Scorpio.
Saturn in house 8 – the planet of the border, the separation and the farewell in the House of ‘Death and Rebirth’
Tree of life: The axis Tiphareth – Netzach
13 as the number destroying the perfection of the 12
Thirteen. This card is a stained glassed representation of a skull. It represents transformation and end of an era. It is the change. The soul is weighed and the heart is measured by the Egyptian Goddess Maat and if it is found to be unworthy it is fed to the God Sebek. It is the card of Scorpio and the energy is Mars.
There hardly is a card provoking so many ‘oops’ in a reading – never forget that the Death is meant as an archetype, a symbol. The Death represents the never-ending circle of death and rebirth as the precondition for new life and creation, for life is permanently changing, hello and good-bye, leaving and arriving.
The Death will show that something has ended and something will begin, and doesn’t care if the end is painful and the new beginning welcomed or vice versa. The card implies the need to let something go, and requires the understanding of the circles of life.
The negative aspect of the card could plainly mean that we want to keep what we have to give up, that no change is welcomed. In most cases it is just a refusal to understand and accept. It can mean we are scared of loss and also afraid to restart.
DEATH TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Endings, beginnings, change, transformation, transition
Reversed: Resistance to change, unable to move on
DEATH TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The Death card shows Death himself riding on a white horse, holding a black and white flag. Death is portrayed as a skeleton as the skeletal bones are the part of the body that survives death. The armor he is wearing indicates that he is invincible and unconquerable. Indeed, no-one has yet triumphed over death. The horse that Death rides is white, the color of purity. Death is therefore the ultimate purifier. All things are reborn fresh, new and pure. Notice even the bishop paying homage to him. All sectors of the human race are represented here – men, women and children – showing that Death does not discern between age, race or gender.
The banner that Death carries has a black background, indicating an absence of light. The white rose, on the other hand, indicates beauty, purification and immortality. In the background of the card, there is a rising sun, a sign of immortality. The sun appears to ‘die’ each night but is reborn fresh and new every morning. The two pillars are guarding the gateway to the sun, symbolizing the knowledge needed to gain immortality. The boat on the water in the background is the ferry that transports the souls across the River Styx. The background is a neutral grey, again showing Death’s impartiality.
Death is ruled by Scorpio (the sign of ‘sex, death and taxes’) and the number is 13, sacred to the Goddess as there are thirteen moons in a year.
Samekh, Sagittarius, Hamsa, Iris flower, Iris goddess pouring water, the yin and yang.
Mercury as ruler of Virgin and House 6 – balance and harmony in motion
Tree of life: From Yesod to Tiphareth
Number: 14 as two times the 7, adjustment of destiny
Temperance represents the art of alchemy, the ability to solve and combine, to turn something plain into something precious. It is the symbol for the right mixture, the perfect balance, standing for harmony, beauty and peace. But the trump can also show that sides that were previously ignored should be lived out and that contrasts should be put together to enrich the inner spectrum with new perspectives.
From a personal view the ‘solve et coagula’ can mean that there is a need to leave a fixed position, to retire, watch and then go back again to combine on a new basis.
TEMPERANCE TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Balance, moderation, patience, purpose, meaning
Reversed: Imbalance, excess, lack of long-term vision
TEMPERANCE TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
On the Temperance card stands a winged angel. The angel is actually a hermaphrodite (the child of Hermes and Aphrodite), showing a balance between the genders. The angel has one foot on dry land, representative of the material world, and one foot in the water, representative of the subconscious. In this position, she also represents the need to ‘test the waters’ before jumping headfirst into unknown circumstances. Here she tempers the whimsical flight of the Fool who jumps without giving a second thought. The triangle inside the square on her robe represents the female being protected by natural law. In her hands she holds two cups which she uses to mix water. The cups represent the sub- and super-conscious minds. One cup can be thought of as holding hot water and the other cold water. The water flowing between them is actually going from the lower cup to the higher one, signifying rising from a lower plane to a higher one. The temperate individual mixes the opposites and finds a balance in life by avoiding extremes. The astrological sign is Sagittarius, the teacher of truth, enthusiasm, tolerance and beauty.
Note: The Tarot card meaning description is based on the Rider Waite cards.
Ayin, Capricorn, Saturn, Devi with many eyes, a guardian of the gates.
Ayin, Saturn at his dark side
Tree of life: From Tiphareth to Hod
Number: 15 as the number of the full moon, the cross sum of 15 is 6
Fifteen. In the Tree of Life the Devil goes from consciousness and harmony to intellect and logic – against all dogma, never caring for rules, freely uncompromising and independent. There are no restrictions, no limitations, nothing is forbidden. The Devil is aware of the darkness, he knows all the shadows and will go on researching even at a high price.
In a positive aspect, the Devil tells us to go ahead with whatever we want, even when the results won’t be comfortable. Never forget that half of the great scientists in history ended up on a scaffold or were accused of ‘heresy’. Therefore, the negative aspect of the card can mean loneliness, misunderstanding, or that someone is outcast and damned. On the other hand of course, it could mean that applying a little restriction here and there wouldn’t have been the worst solution.
DEVIL TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Bondage, addiction, sexuality, materialism
Reversed: Detachment, breaking free, power reclaimed
DEVIL TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The card of the Devil portrays a Satyr, a creature that is half man and half goat. In many myths, the goat was considered an unclean and lustful animal. However, the goat also symbolizes the scapegoat, the person or thing upon which people project the inferior side of themselves in order to feel better about themselves. Thus the Devil is the scapegoat we blame for our troubles in life.
The Devil has the wings of a vampire bat, an animal that sucks the life blood out of its prey. This is symbolic of what happens when we give full reign to the realm of our raw desires. We lose our vitality and life energy. The Devil has an almost hypnotic stare, bringing those who come near him within his power. Above him is an inverted pentagram, signifying the darker side of magic and occultism.
At the foot of the Devil stands a man and a woman, both naked and chained to the podium on which the Devil sits. They appear to be held here, against their will, but only closer observation, the chains around their necks are loose and could be easily removed. This symbolizes that bondage to the Devil is ultimately a voluntary matter which consciousness can release. The man and woman wear tiny horns like those of the Satyr – they are becoming more and more like the devil the longer they stay here. Both have tails – a further symbol of their animalistic or ‘lower’ tendencies.
The dark and doorless cave implies that the Devil dwells in the most inaccessible realm of the unconscious and only crisis can break through the walls.
The number 15 in numerology equals 6, the number that corresponds to the Lovers, and here the lovers are shown chained, in bondage to the material, sensual side of their nature. This card is ruled by Capricorn, the goat.
Note: The Tarot card meaning description is based on the Rider Waite cards.
Peh, Mars, Lightening strikes the tower of Babel from all directions.
Saturn and Uranus – the sudden breakout of realization, destruction of old values
Tree of life: The Axis Netzach – Hod
Number: 16 as 4 x 4: induration. But the cross sum is 7
Sixteen – The Tower is a symbol of endurance and its destruction, an allusion to sudden, maybe shocking realizations that crushes old views and persuasions, maybe the view of the whole world. The area of relative security starts wavering, our tower then falls and with it the walls around us that have become too narrow. It is rarely the evil, but rather the necessary development we meet when there is a change in the armor of destruction. So in the positive aspect, this most violent trump will mean that we proceed to learn that losing the old secure fortress of our beliefs will reward us with a major step forward.
TOWER TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Disaster, upheaval, sudden change, revelation
Reversed: Avoidance of disaster, fear of change
TOWER TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The Tower shows a tall tower pitched atop a craggy mountain. Lightning strikes and flames burst from the building’s windows. People are seen to be leaping from the tower in desperation, wanting to flee such destruction and turmoil. The Tower signifies darkness and destruction on a physical scale, as opposed to a spiritual scale. The Tower itself represents ambitions built on false premises. The lightning bolt breaks down existing forms in order to make room for new ones. It represents a sudden, momentary glimpse of truth, a flash of inspiration that breaks down structures of ignorance and false reasoning. Notice the lightning bolt is oriented left to right (from the perspective of the card), from heaven to earth, and from Spirit to material. The falling figures correspond to the chained prisoners in the Devil card. They fall headfirst, because the sudden influx of spiritual consciousness represented by the lightning flash completely upsets all our old notions about the relations between subconsciousness and self-consciousness. The flames are actually the Hebrew yods. There are 22 flames, representing the 22 Major Arcana. The gray clouds are the clouds of misfortune that rain on everyone indiscriminately. The ruling planet of this card is Mars.
Tzaddi, Aquarius the Star and a woman pouring water and cleansing the garden.
Jupiter in Aquarius as a symbol for long-sightedness and confidence; or Venus in Pisces standing for the desire for the inscrutable
Tree of life: From Chokmah to Tiphareth
Number: 17 as the number of hope, expansion of the 7, cross sum is 8
Seventeen. The Star is the trump of hope and trust, for the sensitive understanding of cosmic coherence, the intuition that everything is in balance and harmony. It is related to the Adjustment (the cross sum of 17 is 8), but while the Adjustment keeps the balance deliberately, the Star keeps it with feeling.
The Star is also called the ‘Guiding Light’, and is taken as a symbol of the deep realization that the chosen way is the right one, that the end of this way will be a good one, and that there is perfect harmony between the psychical feeling and the physical doing..
In a negative position the Star can tell when there is a mistake in the code, some error in our feeling, that the way we feel so sure about isn’t quite right. This is what makes this trump so kind – even in its most negative aspect it just gives us a gentle warning.
STAR TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Hope, spirituality, renewal, inspiration, serenity
Reversed: Lack of faith, despair, discouragement
STAR TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The Star card shows a naked woman kneeling at the edge of a small pool. The woman holds two containers of water. She pours the water out to nourish the earth and to continue the cycle of fertility, represented by the lush greenery around her. The other container pours the water onto dry land in five rivulets, representing the five senses. The woman has one foot on the ground, representing her practical abilities and good common sense, and the other foot in the water, representing her intuition and inner resources, and listening to her inner voice. Behind her, shines one large star and seven smaller stars, representing your chakras. This represents a need to open your chakras and cleanse your aura. Notice all the stars have eight points. The Star is associated with the number 17, which equals 8 (1+7=8). Eight is Strength, the quality needed to accept your faults and love yourself in spite of them. The bird in the tree in the background is the sacred ibis of thought, roosting in the tree of the mind. The astrological sign of the Star is Aquarius.
Qoph, Pisces, Melusina as the duality of a mermaid.
Moon in Scorpio as the dark knowledge of the depths of soul
Tree of life: The connection from Netzach to Malkuth
Number: 18 as the return of the animal (sun- and moon eclipse) cross sum is the 9
Eighteen. The Moon will lead us into the blackest depths of our soul, into the world of the subconscious, where there are no more words, just images and notions. It represents a journey into the darkest night, a look behind our own face.
The Moon isn’t the most comfortable trump – though everybody likes to equate it with the mysteries, rarely someone really enjoys the look into their own abyss, where sometimes the unvarnished truth is not too pleasant. Embarrassingly enough, the Moon tends to show up what we generally ignore, refuse to see, or even deny all the time. But the step has to be taken, for without facing up to darkness, we will never see the light.
Unlike most trumps, the Moon has no real negative aspect, but it implies a serious danger. The journey into night could be too much when we’re not prepared and we might get lost in our own shadow.
MOON TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Illusion, fear, anxiety, insecurity, subconscious
Reversed: Release of fear, unhappiness, confusion
MOON TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The Moon is the card of intuition, dreams and the unconscious. The Moon provides light as a reflection of the Sun, yet this light is dim, uncertain, and only vaguely illuminates our path as we journey toward higher consciousness. The pool at the base of the card represents the subconscious mind and the crayfish that crawls out of the pool symbolizes the early stages of consciousness unfolding. This creature also represents the often disturbing images that appear from our inner depths, just as the dog and wolf at the beginning of the path represent the tamed and the wild aspects of our minds. The path leads between two towers into the mountains in the distance, showing the way to the unconsciousness. The astrological sign associated with this card is Pisces – psychic, receptive and mysterious.
Resh, The sun, time
Sun in House 5 standing for the joy of life, creativity and persuasive power
Tree of life: The axis Hod – Yesod
Number: 19 as a higher level of 9, the cross sum is 10 (> Wheel of Fortune > The Magician)
Nineteen. The Sun is the symbol of life and light, for the power that always is generously given without reducing itself. The Sun will shine and give light to the earth to make all life possible. So the Sun stands for vitality and optimism, the blossoming of our nature, and is a sign that we have overcome the time of darkness and are ready to enjoy the light. But the Sun also has its negative aspects. Never forget that without the depth of water, the sun will create a desert.
SUN TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Fun, warmth, success, positivity, vitality
Reversed: Temporary depression, lack of success
SUN TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The Sun is an image of optimism and fulfillment, the dawn that follows the darkest night. As the source of all life on earth, the Sun represents the source of life itself. The child playing joyfully in the foreground represents the happiness of our inner spirit when we are in tune with our truest Self. He is naked, having nothing to hide. He has all the innocence and purity of childhood. The white horse upon which the child rides represents strength and purity of spirit. The horse is without a saddle and is controlled without the use of the hands. This is a symbol of perfect control between the conscious and subconscious. The child holds an orange banner in his left hand, showing that control has passed from the conscious to the subconscious. The orange banner represents action and vibration, and the rays of the sun represent the same thing. The straight rays are action while the wavy rays represent vibration. The sunflowers in the background represent life and the fruitfulness of the spirit under the nourishment of the Sun. There are four sunflowers, representing the four suits of the Minor Arcana, as well as the four elements. The astrological correspondence to this card is the Sun, of course.
JUDGEMENT (THE AEON)
Shin and the sacred yod
Jupiter and Saturn in Aquarius as a symbol of liberation and redemption
Tree of life: From Malkuth to Hod
Number: 20 as 10 x 2 with the cross sum 2, the revelation of destiny
Twenty. The Aeon is the trump of time and the changes dictated by the times, it addresses finality and destruction as well as liberation, hope and redemption. The Aeon is the symbol for the Rise of Phoenix, it stands for a time of insight, the true understanding of the circle of life, of growing and fading. The card tells us that we should leave our ‘frog perspective’ and watch the things from a higher level, that the time has come to face the new, that we need a good overview to build our ‘Utopia’.
In older decks the Aeon is called ‘Judgment’, dealing with resurrection and redemption. The limitation of this view is the involuntary association to a ‘court of law’, to the Christian concept of a ‘Resurrection’ where the pious may rise and the rest must burn.
Although trump XX indeed does imply a judgement, it wouldn’t be appropriate to restrict this meaning with such a superstitious simplification.
JUDGEMENT TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Judgement, rebirth, inner calling, absolution
Reversed: Self-doubt, refusal of self-examination
JUDGEMENT TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
The Judgement card shows a number of naked men, women and children rising up from their graves, arms outspread and responding to the trumpet call of the archangel, Gabriel, who hovers high above them. The people are appealing to the angel, ready to be judged by the power of the Universe. In the background, there are huge mountains, or even tidal waves, which signify insurmountable obstacles and the impossibility of avoiding judgment. The ocean represents the end of the river that flows through the Major Arcana, starting with the Empress. Gabriel’s banner is red on white, the same as the Magician’s clothing. As with everything in life, the beginning is woven irrevocably into the end and the end eventually leads to a new beginning. The planetary ruler of this card is Pluto, the ruler of the underworld.
THE UNIVERSE (THE WORLD)
Tau, the cross, the global network of consciousness, the tau cross.
Neptune as the cosmic omniscience and Pluto as central power of creation
Tree of life: From Malkuth to Yesod
Number: 21 as the symbol of the whole, 3 x 7, the cross sum is the 3
Twenty-one. The Universe as the end and completion of the Major Arcana is the symbol for the zenith of development – the achieved goal. The work is done or will soon be and we have found our place in life or will soon do so. Seeing the second decade of the Major Arcana as a way of self-realization, the Universe becomes the crown and the end. The Death was the rebirth, the Art the beginning of the alchemic work, the Devil the overcoming of restrictions, the Tower the breakdown of the jail. We followed the Star, explored the Moon, found the Sun and watched the Phoenix rise from the ashes. Finally, we touched the Universe.
On a more practical level the Universe implies the good news that a goal has been achieved, or a success sure to come, and that a venture will flourish. In its negative aspect the trump can tell us that we are running after false ideas, that our way leads nowhere, that it is far too early to reach out for the Universe for there’s substantial work that has yet to be done.
WORLD TAROT CARD MEANINGS KEYWORDS
Upright: Completion, integration, accomplishment, travel
Reversed: Lack of completion, lack of closure
WORLD TAROT CARD MEANINGS AND DESCRIPTION
In the centre of the World is a dancing figure, rejoicing in the completion of the journey and celebrating not only this completion but also the new beginnings it promises. The dancer has one leg crossed over the other, just like the Hanged man. She is, in a sense, his opposite (i.e. the Hanged Man upright). As the Hanged Man looks infinitely inward, the dancer in the World card looks infinitely outward. In each of her hands she holds a wand or baton, representative of evolution and balance. She is surrounded by a thick, green wreath, symbolic of success, victory, achievement and accomplishment, and tied with the red ribbons of eternity. The red ribbons form the infinity symbol, representing the infinite rewards of positive effort in improving both ourselves and those around us. Within the laurel wreath are stars of light indicating attainment of enlightenment or cosmic consciousness.
The figures in each of the four corners of the World card are the same figures that appear on the Wheel of Fortune. Interestingly, the World card is very much associated with the Wheel of Fortune, reflecting the cyclical progression of time and the human experience. The four figures (a lion, bull, cherub and eagle) represent the four fixed signs of the zodiac – Leo, Taurus, Aquarius and Scorpio. These are symbolic of the four elements, four suits of the Tarot, four compass points, four seasons, and the four corners of the universe. And all are within the dancer’s sight and power. The planetary ruler is Saturn, the symbol of time.
Note: The Tarot card meaning description is based on the Rider Waite cards.