The Tarot of The Ages- Key V-The Hierophant depicts a master of the temple, an Egyptian High Priests. Sitting on a throne of stone colossi, embossed with the 5 pointed star of Spirit-Fire-Water-Air and Earth, which is also the symbol for mankind. He is wearing a leopard skin implying that in his heart is the seat of his strength, sure, swift and fierce as a leopard he fulfills his true will. His head and face is the color of Stone signifying he is also beyond the sarcophagus of his past lives and bears upon his forehead the holy sign. The statue of Isis rests between his lower legs, implying that he is granted the authority to teach from the Genetrix herself. The Ankh is displayed throughout the symbology of this card implying infinite knowledge. The crocodile headed god Sobek, (shown on foot stone) was also associated with Isis as the healer of the dismembered Osiris*. Kneeling are the shaved headed initiates awaiting the anointing of holy oil. Once again we renew the oath of the Buddha's, the promise to reject Nirvana and to return to samsara (our dimension), going through the cycle of birth, suffering, death and rebirth until the last being is enlightened and /or standing with the Mind of Horus, the Sungod, as the common intellect in the human race.
The Hierophants' right hand is over his heart and is in the mudra of a blessing. His left hand holds the staff of Wisdom.
When the Tarot of The Ages is thrown in a divination, it implies the same meanings as the Thoth Hierophant.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Sobek (also called Sebek, Sochet, Sobk, and Sobki), in Greek, Suchos (Σοῦχος) and from Latin Suchus ("crocodile"), was an ancient Egyptian deity with a complex and fluid nature. He is associated with the Nile crocodile or the West African crocodile and is represented either in its form or as a human with a crocodile head. Sobek was also associated with pharaonic power, fertility, and military prowess, but served additionally as a protective deity with apotropaic qualities, invoked particularly for protection against the dangers presented by the Nile.History
Sobek enjoyed a longstanding presence in the ancient Egyptian pantheon, from the Old Kingdom of Egypt (c. 2686–2181 BCE) through the Roman period (c. 30 BCE – 350 CE). He is first known from several different Pyramid Texts of the Old Kingdom, particularly from spell PT 317. The spell, which praises the pharaoh as the living incarnation of the crocodile god, reads:
Unis is Sobek, green of plumage, with alert face and raised fore, the splashing one who came from the thigh and tail of the great goddess in the sunlight ... Unis has appeared as Sobek, Neith's son. Unis will eat with his mouth, Unis will urinate and Unis will copulate with his penis. Unis is lord of semen, who takes women from their husbands to the place Unis likes according to his heart's fancy.
This statue of Sobek was found at Amenemhat III's mortuary temple (which was connected to his pyramid at Hawara in the Faiyum), serving as a testament to this king's devotion to Sobek. Ashmolean Museum, Oxford.
Though Sobek was worshipped in the Old Kingdom, he truly gained prominence in the Middle Kingdom (c. 2055–1650 BCE), most notably under the Twelfth Dynasty pharaoh, Amenemhat III. Amenemhat III had taken a particular interest in the Faiyum of Egypt, a region heavily associated with Sobek. Amenemhat and many of his dynastic contemporaries engaged in building projects to promote Sobek – projects that were often executed in the Faiyum. In this period, Sobek also underwent an important change: he was often fused with the falcon-headed god of divine kingship, Horus. This brought Sobek even closer with the kings of Egypt, thereby giving him a place of greater prominence in the Egyptian pantheon. The fusion added a finer level of complexity to the god's nature, as he was adopted into the divine triad of Horus and his two parents: Osiris and Isis.
Sobek first acquired a role as a solar deity through his connection to Horus, but this was further strengthened in later periods with the emergence of Sobek-Ra, a fusion of Sobek and Egypt's primary sun god, Ra. Sobek-Horus persisted as a figure in the New Kingdom (1550–1069 BCE), but it was not until the last dynasties of Egypt that Sobek-Ra gained prominence. This understanding of the god was maintained after the fall of Egypt's last native dynasty in Ptolemaic and Roman Egypt (c. 332 BCE – 390 CE). The prestige of both Sobek and Sobek-Ra endured in this time period and tributes to him attained greater prominence – both through the expansion of his dedicated cultic sites and a concerted scholarly effort to make him the subject of religious doctrine.
This relief from the Temple of Kom Ombo shows Sobek with typical attributes of kingship, including a was-sceptre and royal kilt. The ankh in his hand represents his role as an Osirian healer and his crown is a solar crown associated with one of the many forms of Ra.Cult centers
The entire Faiyum region – the "Land of the Lake" in Egyptian (specifically referring to Lake Moeris) – served as a cult center of Sobek. Most Faiyum towns developed their own localized versions of the god, such as Soknebtunis at Tebtunis, Sokonnokonni at Bacchias, and Souxei at an unknown site in the area. At Karanis, two forms of the god were worshipped: Pnepheros and Petsuchos. There, mummified crocodiles were employed as cult images of Petsuchos.
Sobek Shedety, the patron of the Faiyum's centrally located capital, Crocodilopolis (or Egyptian "Shedet"), was the most prominent form of the god. Extensive building programs honoring Sobek were realized in Shedet, as it was the capital of the entire Arsinoite nome and consequently the most important city in the region. It is thought that the effort to expand Sobek's main temple was initially driven by Ptolemy II. Specialized priests in the main temple at Shedet functioned solely to serve Sobek, boasting titles like "prophet of the crocodile-gods" and "one who buries of the bodies of the crocodile-gods of the Land of the Lake".
Outside the Faiyum, Kom Ombo, in southern Egypt, was the biggest cultic center of Sobek, particularly during the Ptolemaic and Roman periods. Kom Ombo is located about 30 miles (48 km) north of Aswan and was built during the Graeco-Roman period (332 BC AD 395). The temple at this site was called the "Per-Sobek", meaning the "house of Sobek".Character and surrounding mythologies
Sobek is, above all else, an aggressive and animalistic deity who lives up to the vicious reputation of his patron animal, the large and violent Nile crocodile/West African crocodile. Some of his common epithets betray this nature succinctly, the most notable of which being: "he who loves robbery", "he who eats while he also mates", and "pointed of teeth". However, he also displays grand benevolence in more than one celebrated myth. After his association with Horus and consequent adoption into the Osirian triad of Osiris, Isis, and Horus in the Middle Kingdom, Sobek became associated with Isis as a healer of the deceased Osiris (following his violent murder by Set in the central Osiris myth). In fact, though many scholars believe that the name of Sobek, Sbk, is derived from s-bAk, "to impregnate", others postulate that it is a participial form of the verb sbq, an alternative writing of sAq, "to unite", thereby meaning Sbk could roughly translate to "he who unites (the dismembered limbs of Osiris)".
It is from this association with healing that Sobek was considered a protective deity. His fierceness was able to ward off evil while simultaneously defending the innocent. He was thus made a subject of personal piety and a common recipient of votive offerings, particularly in the later periods of ancient Egyptian history.
It was not uncommon, particularly in Ptolemaic and Roman Egypt, for crocodiles to be preserved as mummies in order to present at Sobek's cultic centers. Sobek was also offered mummified crocodile eggs, meant to emphasize the cyclical nature of his solar attributes as Sobek-Ra. Likewise, crocodiles were raised on religious grounds as living incarnations of Sobek. Upon their deaths, they were mummified in a grand ritual display as sacred, but earthly, manifestations of their patron god. This practice was executed specifically at the main temple of Crocodilopolis. These mummified crocodiles have been found with baby crocodiles in their mouths and on their backs. The crocodile – one of the few reptiles that diligently care for their young – often transports its offspring in this manner. The practice of preserving this aspect of the animal's behavior via mummification is likely intended to emphasize the protective and nurturing aspects of the fierce Sobek, as he protects the Egyptian people in the same manner that the crocodile protects its young.
In Ptolemaic and Roman Egypt, a local monograph called the Book of the Faiyum centered on Sobek with a considerable portion devoted to the journey made by Sobek-Ra each day with the movement of the sun through the sky. The text also focuses heavily on Sobek's central role in creation as a manifestation of Ra, as he is said to have risen from the primal waters of Lake Moeris, not unlike the Ogdoad in the traditional creation myth of Hermopolis.
Many varied copies of the book exist and many scholars feel that it was produced in large quantities as a "best-seller" in antiquity. The integral relationship between the Faiyum and Sobek is highlighted via this text, and his far reaching influence is seen in localities that are outside of the Faiyum as well; a portion of the book is copied on the Upper Egyptian (meaning southern Egyptian) Temple of Kom Ombo.Gallery
Mummified crocodiles, in the Crocodile Museum
A wall relief from Kom Ombo showing Sobek with solar attributes
Plaque with head and shoulders of a priestly figure and Sobek; 400-30 BC; limestone; height: 27.5 cm, width: 25.5 cm; Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York City)
Fragment of a relief of Sobek; 400-30 BC; limestone; height: 6 cm, width: 8.7 cm; Metropolitan Museum of Art
ATU 5-The Hierophant, represents the universal Key of learning and teaching.
This key or principle was well explained in the publication of the-Course in Miracles-"as you teach so will you learn.’ If that is true, and it is true indeed, do not forget that what you teach is teaching you."
The Hierophant is also the High Priest in many traditional Tarot decks.
This card requires us to have faith in ourselves; “above all things know thyself" is often forgotten in family situations and in the mundane world of survival. The family situations are represented in this card by the images of Isis and Osiris and Horus.
In pre-Christian times, Isis was the image of Intuition . Osiris, the image of wisdom which can be seen as the scepter of wisdom, and the staff of moon, Isis; also known as representing instinct. Horus represented Perception and Vision, as a child born of Intuition and Wisdom and in the now, represents us. We are the children of Intuition and Wisdom who are to be the purveyors of perception and vision. We must have faith in following our childlike abilities of innocence and curiosity (the child in the star); we are to walk the mystical path with the practical feet of the Magus/True Will. We are the All Potential of Daäth, the Cosmic Womb- Birthplace of our Souls.
The Hierophant is that inner part of ourselves that knows how to express our divinity into the outer world.
Crowley's Thoth card is considered one of the most important in Tarot, containing many traditional elements intermingled with Crowley's own discoveries and philosophies. For instance, the image of a child in the Pentagram that is within a larger Hexagram, is explained as." This symbolizes the law of the new Aeon of the Child of Horus, which has supplanted that Aeon of the 'Dying God' which governed the world for two thousand years". Crowley believed that the rhythm of the HIEROPHANT is such that he moves at 2,000 year intervals. Remembering that this is a Spiral Universe, made of multiple frequencies and dimensions (harmonies) of One Energy, One Mind and that there are rhythmic movements in the multiple States of Conscious Energy, of which the HIEROPHANT is a major state, making this cyclic movement seem plausible. It is also nice to know that within our own infinity (inner self) resides our Librarian of Universal Tomes who will not hesitate to instruct the diligent student. But until we are no longer satisfied with the ludicrous fantasy of our own cultural "Group Soul", we will never be able to achieve the mental velocity to escape our imprisonment of Time- created perspectives and consciously enter the infinite depths of Our Spiral Energetic Self.
Each of us is our very own Tree of Life, and each of us makes his/her own Qabalah. When there is a shift in the 2,000 year Group Soul from Patriarch/Osiris to that of, Horus, those who can't behold the more advanced perspective, will have to live in a lesser intelligent fantasy of their own perspectives on other dimensional planes. Sensuality then, will be condemned to memory rather than new experience and as we know from our own experiences, after a bout of time, sensual memory fades to a point where only the most extreme of sensual experiences are remembered. Luckily the HIEROPHANT that is a Higher State of Conscious Energy within our Tree of Life (our Spiral Pattern of Force and Form) gives us back our dimensionally shedding of memories. These discarded memory bites are stored in the intelligence called Daäth---"the invisible Sephiroth"---known in English as –Knowledge, residing invisibly just above the Abyss on the Middle Pillar. Obviously, to get to this point of inner-journey, we have to experience the "Dark Night of the Soul", achieving an emptiness of perspective so that we can be refilled or as I like to say, where we can claim our inheritance as the Divine Child/Identity of the One Mind. The HIEROPHANT awaits us all, and will fill to capacity, the thirsty student!
As a Divine Identity of the I AM, you are denied nothing that "ever was or will be"; However, you have the freedom to deny yourself! Thus, you should know that the HIEROPHANT does not have Authority over your Spirit, your freedom of choice is still intact. Your True Name is "I AM" which constructs, by self- perspective, your objective self-called "ME". You are the one I (eye) of your constructs.
Upon examining this card, the HIEROPHANT sits on a Bull between two elephants, holding a wand of 3 interlocking rings, symbolizing the Aeons of Isis, Osiris and Horus (the Child in the Pentagram) Beneath is the veiled "Scarlet Woman" (Crowley), who is shown riding the Lion Serpent in the Lust card of Thoth Tarot, unveiled, depicting purity. The 9 nails above, symbolize Vau, the linking of the above and the below (the nine Sephiroth below the 0 that is Kether, who is Fiery-Darkness/unlimited Light.) The Manifested Spirit, passes along the "Window" (triangular ray of Light form the Scarlet woman upward) from the Microcosm to the Macrocosm.
Now all is not "sweetness and light" in the HIEROPHANT, and most authorities on tarot agree that there are some unpleasant aspects to this Key. I would recommend that the serious student read the book by Richard Cavendish: THE TAROT, where the implications of this State of Energy Consciousness are very cleverly related to Gnosticism. He points out that the Demiurge, the Lesser Creator which rules over manifestation, was also known by the Gnostics as the "Great Deceiver", and initiates of the Valentinian Gnostics were taught to ignore the authority of this one who is a type of staunch librarian and only has authority over its library. Truth is, there is only one authority over us, and that is our own Soul and/or Freedom to Choose and we get to experience freely the consequences there of. Only slaves need saviors!
The Path of Vau (Nail or Hook), is the 16th path, on the Tree of Life. Leading from Chesed (mercy) to Chokmah (wisdom) and is known as the Eternal Intelligence (Dr. Paul Foster Case). The Path of Vau is the uppermost path on the Pillar of Mercy (Right hand Path). In the Golden Dawn texts, this path is described as, “The Zodiac acting through Taurus upon Jupiter". Here, Chokma is Jupiter, and his action is the spermatic potential of the Manifested Universe. Chesed, the Yod of Microcosm (Microprosopus), is the Father in Manifestation, while Chokmah (the Yod of the Macrocosm (Macroprosopus) is the Supernal Father.
Therefore, the Path of the Hierophant is considered to be a powerfully masculine one (Electric Force), to which the Bull-Taurus is applied and image definitively applied to this card. Being "Fixed Earth", this is a stable foundation; a stabilizing extreme. This is the absolute foundation of the process of revelation.... where the inherited Knowing of the Creator, where THE Great Father, is expressing Its experience through the Supreme Spiritual Self to the Personality or Ego of Tiphareth (The Sun/Soul of Beauty). Thus memory is involved and the solid foundation of "Above all things, know thyself" is established as a Universal Inheritance for the Divine Child.
Also the meaning of the Hebrew word Vau, is nail or hook, implying a nailing together, or binding, and links the Macrocosm (The Great Universe) and Microcosm (Manifestation), and/or The Greater Self to the lesser Self of matter, forever linking us to the Divine Spirit. THE HIEROPHANT is related to teaching, which relates Higher ideas into Lower organisms that is often called, "As above so below". The Hierophant is a state of conscious energy that is the only source for our understanding of the inner Spirit/Spiral energy conscious. This "Magus of the Eternal" is stated by Dr. Paul Foster Case in his text," THE THIRTY-TWO PATHS OF WISDOM, as being the," .... Pontifix, the 'bridge maker' who provides a connecting link between outer experience and interior illumination." Thus, the Hierophant gets the discriminating and intimate experience of the Body-operating-Personality, while teaching that very same Personality its inherited Divinity. Thus, The Hierophant can be said to "Learn by Teaching" and the Eternal Intelligence can be called "Life" and/or the Reasoning behind manifestation, implying that a teacher who learns from his students, is a great teacher.
Crowley's main concept was the "grounding" of the 5th- Key-, using the corner symbols of the 4 Kerubim (Guiding intelligences of the Four Elements) as the tentative expressions of the primordial Elements of Kether (Crown) that are passed down to Chokmah as the Sphere of the Zodiac. Interestingly, we think of the Zodiac as 12 signs, but it is really four ternaries... Where each element is broken down to three signs. To the Qabalist, this relates to Yod (hand) Heh (Window) and Vau (Nail).
The Administrator to the emerging duality that is Chokmah (Phallus -Womb, male-female, electric-magnetic) is the Hierophant and it given form or structure by Binah (Great Mother) which begins as manifestation below the Abyss (Dark Energy and Dark Matter) in Chesed (Mercy). Thus, relating to Tiphareth (Beauty-Synchronicity), the central point of manifestation. This relationship is shown in two ways, first as the letter Vau, which is related to "The Son/Sun" (Child of God), and Tetragrammaton and the second is the number 6 itself is related to Tiphareth. Crowley shows this by the Pentagram on the chest of the Hierophant as the four elements are combined under the fifth Element-Spirit, thus forming the 5 pointed star. The Pentagram image, confirms the Great Work known as "As above, so below", a process in which the symbolic Moon always is a key part. For the Moon is both above and below the Sun on the Tree of Life, as it is both implied as Yesod (Foundation) and is the Path of the Priestess and is exalted in Taurus.
Let us not forget that Taurus is also ruled by Venus, referring us to the Empress, the Path of Daleth, between Chokmah and Binah. THE EMPRESS is Cosmic Mother Nature, and/or the fertilized Universal Consciousness that is the foundation of the HIEROPHANT'S teaching.
THE HIEROPHANT'S teaching is intuitive, as it is on the "feeling" side of the Tree of Life (Venus-Netzach side), applying intuition to concepts collected by reason and built up by memory. I would recommend you meditated on the Thoth ATU 5 card.
When the HIEROPHANT card is thrown during a reading:
When ill defined by surrounding cards:
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