In many other Traditional Tarot Decks, Key 14 is called Temperance, which implies the heating and cooling of forged steel to make a keen, flexible blade or the slow cooling down process of tempering glass. And in a way, this process is the Art Card's Path of Samekh (meaning -Prop), as it is attributed to the restriction and control over the forces of existence. Master Theron, (Crowley) in his book 777, he made this comment on the letter Samekh: It is "The Womb preserving Life. Self-control and Self-sacrifice govern the Wheel."
Leading from Yesod (foundation) to Tiphareth (beauty), the Path of Samekh is as from Moon (Self-reflection) to Sun (Solar Source); from Personality to the Higher Self.
On this very difficult Path, the very enormity of the Great Work (As above, so below) will be experienced. Also on this path, the initiate may experience going through a long dark tunnel, believing (not knowing) there is Light at the end of it.
This Path of Samekh, the Art card, has been called one of the Paths of "the dark night of the Soul", verifying that this is a Path of trial and temptation. Samekh, is the Intelligence of Probation, as Dr.Paul Foster Case labels it in his text, THIRTY-TWO PATHS OF WISDOM. In various Gnostic texts, it is also called, "Daughter of the Reconcilers, the Bringer Forth of Life." All of these phrases lead us right to the very idea behind this card, The Great Mother Binah/The Divine Feminine. Thus, the central figure of this card, is Female. both light and shadow. Then there is the ruling sign of the Path of Samekh, Sagittarius, the Archer, who is also Diana the Huntress, goddess of the Moon. All of which repeats the principle that with the exception of the FOOL (0), all the figures of the Tarot are Mother Binah (Understanding) and Father Chokma (Wisdom) in different states of Force and Form.
Another helpful reference book, VOICE OF ISIS- by Hariette and Homer Curtis (may be out of print) describes the Universal Mother (The Womb with a View) as the "power of bringing forth in humanity the Divine Child or the Christ." The Divine Child/Horus, is our Soul, whose connection to the personality is reborn and achieved by personally conquering the Path of Samekh / The Art. We are not only to be the Moon’s reflections of personality, but also the Solar Personality, that is the Divine Child.
It is to be understood, the Art card demonstrates how the experience of rebirth is brought about, which is to say, through the exchange and equilibrium of opposites which can only be symbolically described, but it does not demonstrate the birth itself. Thus, the symbolism here is not to demonstrate a "deep Mystery", rather this symbolism demonstrates how limited and inadequate is our language to describe the process. That is why the Qabalistic Tarot Reader, is not one who thinks that by memorizing descriptions and numbers of the cards they are a Tarot Reader. Rather, it is by skrying, and subjectively "walking the Paths", turning subjective into objective sensation, i.e. the process of actual spiritual-mental-physical experience ....one begins to understand the Tarot.
The Art Card may not be nearly as symbolic as some believe, for it symbolizes the Alchemical Art where Fire becomes Water and Water becomes Fire (...."When the male is no longer male and the female, female.” (Gnostic Gospel of Thomas). This process is describing an actual event/process that happens in the initiate’s material body, i.e. an actual physical transformation. Thus we have illustrated on this card an Androgynous figure, combining the Water (consciousness with Lightning and/or Fiery Spirit) creating in the Golden Cistern (the Human body) what is known as the Living Water and/or consciousness vivified by merging with Fiery Spirit. By bringing Spiritual will into the body, Spirits fiery nature not only tempers the consciousness, one also tempers the Spirit with consciousness. Thus forming "something more than the sum of its parts." A union of Master and Masterpiece!
This alchemical process is often describe by Qabalists as a personal application of the Yod (fire) and Heh (water) uniting in the body to produce Vau (Air) within the individual crucible of form which is Heh-final and Earth;YHVH. This is described as a "Spiritual Orgasm" or "The Ecstasy" which is a process demanding inner manipulation of sexual forces (He-She) and is shown as an golden energy (in the shape of a stylized arrow) firing upward and across the shoulders of the Divine figure in the Art Card. Even the often flesh-o-phobic Christian iconography, has accepted this Spiritual Orgasm. For instance, the ecstasy of the 16th century mystic, Saint Theresa which was described as an angel thrusting a flaming arrow into her heart .
The symbolical of the piecing arrow that brings ecstatic enlightenment is actually an archetypal, and mufti-cultural accepted description of a real process of physiological transformation! What happens is a rhythmic, pleasuring motion of inner energy, and ebb and flow of harmonics that is confined (shown as the figure eight associate with the Magus) in very specific perimeters (oval or womb shaped) but which is taken in either direction at will. The Magus, knows that by changing the vibration of inner energy, one raises or lowers the level of consciousness, moving from Chakra to Chakra or Path to Path. Simply stated: the Kundalini (sexual energy) acting upon consciousness produces "expanded "I" sight and the Higher pictures that form our mind/psyche are seen.
At first, many students find the symbolism of the Major Arcana complicated; However, the principle of the Path of Samekh or Art, is to produce a consciously controlled vision that is limited by will. The purpose of Hermetic, Qabalistic, and Gnostic symbols is to furnish descriptions that most anyone can relate to. If you focus on one symbol at a time they are not remote or really complicated. In fact most of the symbolic language of the Mysteries, has been superseded by the language of Carl Jung and other psychologists. To Carl Jung, this ability to consciously control Visions, would be called "lucid dreaming", which is known to help the individual correct personality disorders.
Robert Wang goes on to explain, in his test book: THE QABALISTIC TAROT,"
It should be added that the Metals described in Alchemical literature are the same as the Seven Chakras of the Hindus, the Seven Planets and the Sephiroth of the Microprosopus [lower seven on the Tree of Life.]. These words have been used as codes over the centuries, meaning seven distinct levels of objective consciousness. Thus when one speaks of a Planet ruling a sign of the Zodiac, what is meant in the relationship of a Sign to a given center of energy both in the Greater Universe and in the Human body." (The brackets are my own explanation).
The Art of awakening these Paths in the Human Body, is the Qabalistic and Tantric initiates goal. "To Know Thyself" is to know the "As above and so below" nature of our Whole Self and/or the Union of Lesser Self with the Greater Self (Microcosm united with Macrocosm).
The Art Card, is the sign of Sagittarius, which is ruled by the planet Jupiter, meaning the Sephiroth, Chesed (Wisdom). Here, we should remember that Chesed is the architect of all manifestation, working with the "will to form “and/or "potential to form" of Binah (Understanding).
As explained before, Art- ATU/Key 14- The Path of Samekh, is an actual physical process, known for centuries by the Gnostic, Mystics, Tantrics, Alchemists, and Qabalists. And is a willed process of directing the communion or interchange of opposite forces. The beginning of this process is begun by the Higher Self-; a process which is instituted in the 4th Sephiroth Chesed, the most refined, point of Microprosopus (Microcosm), to which the Higher Self is central (Tipareth-6th Sepiroth). Chesed is the enacting/catalytic force (phallus) tp the Great Mother Binah's process of “will to form" (Womb). Until the initiate accomplices this process of the Path of Samekh, the Higher Self (Shown as an androgynous figure on the card) cannot be known to the personality. Thus the Art of "Spiritual Alchemy" and )*Tantric arts, describes this Card and the whole process as a preparation of the Personality, and its physical vehicle, to deal with the Solar Forces (influx of Light/Kundalini and/or inner soul) which would devastate a "normal" system. This is an ongoing process of measuring and testing, instigated by the Higher Self, to see how much the personality and physical body can bear. When properly tempered, the personality and the body can handle the stress of such energy. Hence, the arrow is released (Kundalini rises). Once contacted on the Path of Samekh, the Higher Self/Higher Androgyny will regulate the flow, so the individual isn't harmed, A great jolt of energy, will tell the individual to "back off', and relax. Because this is a Passion so overwhelming, it is often described as Divine Anger, which is apt if we realize that anger is for self-motivation; a catalyst that activates getting off of one's butt and doing something. It could well be that Divine Anger is the motivation for Sagittarius to launch his arrow.
* Tantric Arts/ Tantra is a Sanskrit word for "to expand and liberate". Qabalah, is Hebrew for " receiving" and/or "to receive".
The Art Card ATU 14, is the consummation of the Divine Marriage, depicted on the Lovers card ATU/Key 6, here the Orgasm of Spirit has been reached by the union of the Anima and Animus. There is a perfect interchange of forces, as the Red Lion (Animus) has become white (Anima), and the White lion (anima) has become Red (animus). The Art card shows Water being poured on Fire, and Fire is merged with Water, all within the purified physical vehicle, shown as the Golden Cauldron, i.e. the Master's body. Around the Androgynous figure are the Latin words, "Visita Interiora Terrae Rectificando Invenies Occultum Lapidem", when translated into English, means:" Visit the interior parts of the earth; by rectification* thou shalt find the hidden stone". The "Philosophers Stone", being the ultimate achievement of alchemy and body chemistry. Only when the balance of fire and water are reached, in the body and/or "Golden Cauldron" can the physiological and chemical change happen in the body. We know the golden cauldron to be the physical body, because it has the equal armed cross above the Raven and Skull glyph of "kaput", and/or death; the organic body dies. Hence, the balance of fire, water, air and earth, are also symbolized in the cross over death. The body is the sacred cauldron for this fiery intimate union of Goddess/God and/or Shakti and Shiva. Our body is to be the honeymoon suite of the Divine "Will to Force"/Wisdom and "Will to Form"/Understanding. Because the body has been profaned by Christianity, we have become mentally enslaved animals, rather than Temples of the Divine I Am.
Get and read the Textbook, The Qabalistic Tarot by Robert Wang and the Book of Thoth by Aleister Crowley for further explanation of this coded process.
the action of putting something right."rectification of common errors in letter writing" ·
the conversion of an alternating current to a direct current.
"the inward rectification of single-channel currents"
the purification or refinement of a substance by repeated or continuous distillation.
"the light oil obtained by these processes also needs to be treated through the process of rectification"
The Tarot of Druids-Key XIV-Achtan, represents the woman who gave birth to Cormac, who was destined to reconquer sovereign power using wisdom.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Achtan, fl. c. 1st-2nd centuries AD, mother of Cormac mac Airt.Contents
In the Irish saga, Cath Maige Mucrama, Achtan is named as the daughter of Olc Acha of the Crich Óic Bethra, near what is now Clarenbridge, County Galway. The night before the Battle of Mag Mucrama, Art mac Cuinn he was a guest of Olc Acha, who asked him how many children he had. To ensure the survival of his bloodline in case of his death, Olc Acha proposed Cormac sleep with Achtan and conceive a son.
"It was then that Cormac was conceived. He (Art) told her she would bear a son and that that son would be king of Ireland. Then he told her of every hoard he had hidden for the benefit of that son. And he said that he would be killed the following day and he takes leave of her. He told her to bring her son for fostering to his friend among the Connachtmen. And on the following day he went to the battle."
Achtan gave birth to *Cormac mac Airt, ancestor of the Connachta, making her ancestor of Irish dynasties such as Uí Fiachrach, Uí Briúin, Uí Ailello, Muintir Murchada. Families descended from these dynasties include MacDermot, O'Conor, Ó Cléirigh, O'Flaherty, O'Dowd, O'Shaughnessy, McGivergan and O Hynes. (Note
The name Connacht for this era is an anachronism. The Connachta, after whom the province is named, were said to have been the descendants of Conn Cétchathach, who is supposed to have lived several centuries later. Later stories use the name Cóiced Ol nEchmacht as an earlier name for the province of Connacht to get around this problem. The chronology of early Irish historical tradition is an artificial attempt by Christian monks to synchronise native traditions with classical and biblical history.
The birth of a Wise King, is equal to the birth of Horus, the Inner Sun/Son, where the body becomes what the Divine meant it to be, the Temple of Wisdom. Hence, this card is comparable to the Thoth Art Card.
When the Art card is thrown during a reading:
- The querent is experiencing or will soon experience, a combination of forces affecting realization and action.
- A blending of all circumstances in order to achieve balance.
- Trials and tribulations that lead to the "middle path", arriving at a profound realization.
- A balance of peace, achieved by care and healing.
- The proper measure (portionality and harmony).
If ill defined by surrounding cards:
- Excess (conflicts, dissipation).
- Tendency towards extremes.
- Hidden schemes.
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