Archive | Tarot Studies

Tarot as a Metaphysical Guide

Screen Shot 2015-03-13 at 11.15.15 pmThe ultimate purpose of the Tarot is to be used as a metaphysical guide through your physical life, but the soul must have awakened before the value of the Tarot’s archetypal energies as they flow through you, can be fully appreciated. It is imperative to understand yourself in all aspects to allow your function to be fulfilled while you are upon the earth plane. To understand your characteristic traits and talents is to begin to understand your destiny. Working with the Tarot will help you to understand the archetypal energies that are constantly flowing through you, and which ones are influencing you at the present time. All cards pulled serve a learning purpose, and are therefore benevolent, even seemingly negative cards may be showing you the way to deal with a sticky situation.

Since all confusion is the result of ignorance, the Tarot seeks to answer those questions by turning you back on yourself with more questions. Since the answer to any question is always sought within the question itself. This why serious students will always consider tarot as a metaphysical guide along the many pathways to self-mastery.

All fate is the result of the thoughts that are the roots of your character. Change your thinking and you can change your destiny. “Know thyself” was a maxim given by the ancients so humankind could become wise and master their own destinies, but many do not want to know themselves; they are quite content to plod along buffeted by the winds of fate. Free will becomes a gift when you understand that you create your own destiny by your own thoughts and emotions. Otherwise fate will become your teacher and put you in positions that will ensure you learn certain lessons, whether you think you need them or not. The winds of fate will be caused to blow from your negative thought processes, in an effort to give you the clues you need to make the necessary adjustments. As you gain in understanding, you can avoid much of the negative conditioning and use the positive aspects to enjoy a life of happiness.

The Tarot has been with us since the dawn of time in one form or another as it is a pictorial representation of the journey back to the Godhead, using the analogy of the four elements in conjunction with the Kabbalah. We can see this even in religious ceremonies today.

For example, on the first card, the Magician, we see depicted the four elements, in the form of the sword, the wand, the cup and the coin resting on a table. If you look at the symbology depicted in some churches today, you will see something similar. It only takes a little bit of imagination to come up with the analogy. The cards are simply used to show the many blessings and pitfalls along the way. The blessings can be enjoyed; the pitfalls can either be avoided if you have your wits and understanding about you, or grin and bear it if you can’t. The four elements represent the Tetragrammaton, which is representative of the secret name of the being who ensouls our planet and works with the interactions of those four sacred elements.

There are various cards that can help you on your journey and these are your Personality Card and your Soul Card.

Your personality card can be ascertained by adding up the numbers of your birthdate one under the other. First the date, then the month and finally the year; then add all the numbers together. Remember there are only 22 major arcana cards, so keep any number that appears up to the number 22. This is your personality card.  If you have double digits add them together to get your soul number. For example if your personality number is 13 (Death) which means transformation, then your soul number is 4 (Emperor) the male principle inside you. This means you are learning to transform from a perhaps a rather normal type personality to a personality that is ready to take control of your life by balancing the four elements within you by your own power and divine authority. So use the tarot as a metaphysical guide to assist you on your journey back to the Source.


The Wisdom of the Tarot

Here, we are not interested in the fortune telling aspect of the Tarot, we are interested in the inner or spiritual significance which pertains to the Path of Initiation as represented by the twenty two Major Arcana cards that contain the wisdom of the Tarot.

I will tie in as many aspects from other sources as I am permitted to relate. This information will be channelled through from a deeper source so some of the information will be different. References to the Egyptian Mysteries, the Hebrew mysteries, and the Bible will be incorporated in this study.

Today, most Tarot decks are used for divination purposes. Divination is a noun that literally means: “to make godlike.” And the Major Arcana shows the journey that each one must make to return to their source, or God. The drawings on the Tarot cards are symbolical of archetypal energies or that which the ancient Egyptians and Greeks termed gods and goddesses; and a full list of correspondences will eventually be given.

There is a spiritual record of all events that ever were and will be concerning our planet called the Akashic Records, and these records have been equated with what has been termed the Collective Unconscious. Archetypal energies and the Collective Unconscious are synonymous so it is no wonder that the Tarot has been so successful as a tool of divination. We must however, remember that these cards contain in picture form, the ancient wisdom of Hermes Trismegistos veiled under the form of divination. But we are about to discover that they contain much more—much, much more. If you remember the Hermetic axiom I used at the beginning, “That which is above, is also that which is below,” you will come to understand both the physical and non-physical universe in an entirely different way, not to mention the different levels that reside one within the other.

Another old axiom states: “Man know thyself” This was placed over the entrance to the mystery temples in Egypt and Greece. No clue however, was given about how to achieve this, and except through diligent effort on the part of the seeker, no pathway was shown. This is why the secrets of the Tarot are being revealed once more in their fullness. This information will bring about change, and will show you how to move from the body and personality, through to the creative being that you truly are. Under the heading, “The Tarot and Psychic Powers,” I alluded to the pineal and pituitary glands. Information on these important centres will also be given in due course, and you may experience a shift in consciousness as a result.

You will become a pioneer of your own destiny, that which once had been separated, will move toward being reunited. The self will be restored to the Self through the reunion of the inner and outer parts. You can achieve this through the Wisdom of the Tarot.


The Study of the Tarot

The study of the Tarot in an esoteric sense will lead you through one of the doorways to the mysteries of life. The Tarot has been with us since the dawn of time in one form or another as it is a pictorial representation of the journey back to the Godhead. And we can see this even in many religious ceremonies today. For example, on the first card, the Magician, we see depicted the four elements, in the form of the sword, the wand, the cup and the coin resting on a table. If you look at the symbology depicted in some churches today, you will see something similar. It takes only a little bit of thinking to come up with the analogy. The cards are simply used to show the many blessings and pitfalls along the way. And as you work your way through each impression of the card, you will experience the energies associated with the archetype that the card represents.

Spiritual truth never comes as dogma; it comes as a small still voice from within, and is only relative to you and the lessons you have chosen to learn in this incarnation. This does not mean to say that you cannot assist others if they ask you, but the warning here, of course is, not to let your ego or personality colour the information coming through. Truth depends on the insight of each individual, so it is rather impossible to generalize about the problem of truth, except to say that each one will have their own truth and it will be relative to the degree of their spiritual maturity.

The capacity to differentiate between knowledge and wisdom is also tied up with this problem of truth. There is a wide difference between the two and it is much easier to gain knowledge than wisdom. Whereas knowledge depends on receptivity and understanding of the mind and experience coupled with the memory of such experiences, wisdom does not depend on knowledge at all, although both are identical up to a certain point. The source of wisdom comes from the causal principle or that which is termed the Godhead. Therefore wisdom does not depend on the mind or the memory, but on the maturity and purity of the individual entity, and insights are passed on through the intuitive or inspirational processes. Therefore to develop a well rounded out personality, knowledge as well as wisdom must go hand in hand; neither one nor the other must trail behind.

The Tarot, therefore is the perfect tool to assist in unlocking the intuitive processes and can lead to profound insight and wisdom.


The History of Tarot

An Egyptian High Priest, Hermes Trismegistos, probably one of the greatest initiates that walked the earth before Christ, left for humanity the Book of Wisdom entitled “Thoth” or the Emerald Tablet of Hermes, containing some of the highest wisdom that has ever been left on our planet. His Hermestablet or Tabula Smaragdina, from which comes the saying, “That which is above is also that which is below,” serves to prove the macrocosmic and microcosmic laws of analogy. These teachings are termed Hermetic Science by those who have studied them and have been initiated into them. Originally, this Book of Wisdom was composed of 78 slabs which later become known as the 78 Tarot cards we have today because of the genius of one of the Masters of wisdom who had the ability to inspire his earthly disciple.  The meaning behind these Tarot cards became corrupted over time and although they were used in card games, what better way of keeping the ancient wisdom before the public eye? Much has been said about the history of Tarot, but this information comes straight from the Master R.

During the early Christian period the Tarot cards fell into disfavour with the church because they contained many so-called pagan symbols and Tarot reading was forbidden to Christians. Universal truths always survive and so too, the cards managed to survive in the East and were reintroduced into Europe during the Crusades. In the fourteenth century when the Tarot first made its appearance in Europe, Christianity reigned supreme, and the earliest references to the cards in Europe are prohibitions against their use by the church, which body later referred to them collectively as the Devil’s Picture Book. Paganism still lurked in many fairly obvious forms and resulted in extreme ecclesiastical persecution of heretics. The church pursued its own ends with a zeal combined with both passionate devotion and political opportunism. To be found in possession of a pack of Tarot cards was, according to them, proof of Witchcraft, and lead to death by burning at the stake. Rather strange activity for an organization whose Master gave as his most powerful commandment, “Love one another.”

How then did the Tarot survive in the face of the considerable effort made on the part of Christianity to stamp it out? Universal truths always survive and resurface at the appropriate time; and one way to discern whether a religion contains universal truths, is by the amount of time it is able to persist through the annals of time. What we commonly term Gnosticism, which is one of the collective terms for paganism and other esoteric information was preserved within the fold of the church itself and studied under a mask of learning consonant with ecclesiastic respectability.

The esoteric principle behind the deck of Tarot cards may owe a lot to the ascetic measures placed upon the monks during the medieval period. Forced to rely on memory, the medieval monk would have retained the pictures in the mind by the process of visualization and association, a practice that we are once more utilizing today. The idea of an adventurous and perilous journey through unknown territory was also typical of medieval literature. To travel in the middle ages was as hazardous and uncertain as travelling the paths of inner knowledge. Also, throughout the middle ages there existed various metaphysical orders and secret societies that kept the knowledge of the Tarot intact but hidden and preserved for future generations.

The Major Arcana shares a lot of symbolism with the metaphysical teachings associated with Buddhism, whose founder, Gautama, is thought to have been born some 500 years or so before Christ. The Fool might well be said to represent the wandering monk himself. The Emperor and Empress, Buddha’s parents; the chariot, the triumphal vehicle of Vishnu; the Pope, the Hermit, the Hanged Man and Death, the Man of Religion, the Ancient One, the Cripple and Corpse are said to have been encountered by Buddha prior to his enlightenment; The Lovers, the raising of the Kundalini through sacred sex; the Wheel of Fortune, obviously the Wheel of Rebirth and Karma, and so on, were of course well known. Undoubtedly the Tarot represents the same concepts, but simply filtered through the Western Mystery tradition.

The most popular deck of the modern era is undoubtedly the Rider-Waite Deck, designed by A.E. Waite, who was a member of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. Two other decks were designed by members of that fraternity, The Golden Dawn Tarot, designed by MacGregor Mathers and the Thoth Tarot designed by Aleister Crowley. These are not as well known as the Rider-Waite Deck and were probably designed for private use by the members of the Golden Dawn. The Golden Dawn placed greater emphasis on the Tarot as a pathway to higher knowledge than any other known group.

The Tarot represents an allegorical journey, each card being the experience of universal archetypal energy, rather like the episodes in Dante’s “Divine Comedy.” The idea of an adventurous and perilous quest through unknown territory has also been handed down through the legends of Merlin and King Arthur. These are all symbolical of inner journeys to find the Holy Grail.

The ancient wisdom as revealed in the Modern Tarot Deck remains basically hidden even today, but we have been given enough clues to be able to open the doorways and enter into the ancient mysteries. The Journey through the Tarot is showing the Return Path to the Source or God showing the blessings and pitfalls along the way.



Powered by WordPress. Designed by WooThemes