Thoth Tarot- ATU 7-The Chariot
The Chariot-Key 7- Santa Muerte Tarot
Motion or change and identity or rest are the first and second secrets of Nature: Motion and Rest. The whole code of her laws may be written on the thumbnail.
The Thoth ATU 7-Chariot represents the Universal Key of change/movement combination of stillness-activity: of movement and repose.
Every individual is touched by change multi-dimensionally in their areas of Earth, Air, Water and Fire, as symbolized by the 4 pillars, the 4 wheels, and the 4 animal kerabs. All these 4 elemental aspects of ourselves combine to create who we are, mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually.
The spinning disc in the hands of the charioteer, symbolizes the Blue Grail and the Red Grail; the Blue Grail is the "Will to Form" that is the Divine Feminine and the Red Grail is "Mother's Blood" the love of Vigorous life. Both of which indicate that we have free-choice and can choose fortunate, positive, and abundant changes for ourselves.
The 10 crystals on the golden armor represent the ten powerful positive choices of the 10 Sephiroth on the Qabalist' Tree of Life; The crown, which is "the crowning achievement", wisdom, understanding, mercy, severity, beauty, splendor, victory, foundation and kingdom, in that order. These 10 states of conscious energy/One Mind are multidimensional movements and repose that are known as "Our Greater Self".
When this card is thrown during a reading, it generally means that a new force is dissolving old forms. This is a time for clearing out, moving beyond the past, beginning with new energy and taking full responsibility for the past. This is a time of supreme magical power and self-mastery. But as always, this explanation is too short for a more profound understanding of this Powerful symbol for Self movement and much more study is required as this card also represents the "Holy Guardian Angel" of Western Magic.
THE CHARIOT- Key 7 is the Path of Cheth on the Tree of Life, the word Cheth means enclosure, or fence which is that enclosure which the Chariot provides for the Charioteer.
In the THIRTY TWO PATHS OF WISDOM, Dr.Paul Foster Case stated:
The Eighteenth Path is called the House of Influence (by greatness of whose abundance the influx of good things upon created beings is increased) and from the midst of the investigation the arcana and hidden senses are drawn forth, which dwell in its shade and which cling to it, form the cause of all causes.
Between Geburah (Severity) and Binah (Understanding) the Great Mother on the Tree of Life, runs the Path of Cheth. This is the highest and most profound Path on the Pillar of Severity and introduces the Personality to the Supreme Spiritual Self that wraps our Soul in the Golden Armor of Protection so that the Psyche can be carried through the unmanifested Universe, and/or Dark Matter and Dark Energy. The Chariot is the enclosure that holds the Soul in a state of peace, as moves through all planes.
In his BOOK OF TOKENS, Dr.Paul Foster Cases stated this about the Chariot:
I am the hedge of protection
Enclosing the field of existence in this field thou dwellest, And I am thy defense, against the darkness which is without. Yet is this hedge of safety, alas a wall of limitation, and the darkness against which it defends thee is the radiant Darkness of the Limitless Light, too brilliant for thine eyes.
The Darkness that Case, refers to is that of the Limitless Light of Kether, the very pinnacle of the Supreme Spiritual Self. Pictured in the Chariot, the experience of the Spiritual Self is known in Alchemy as the "Exhalation", a part of the process where the Alchemist becomes the "Philosopher's Stone".
The Thoth Chariot, shows the influences of both the Hindu Tattvas and the biblical text of Ezekiel with its "living creatures" being represented as 4 Sphinxes pulling the Chariot. These 4 Kerubim (angelic beings) represent not only the four Tarot Elements of Fire, Water, Air and Earth, but also each has four sub-elements, as do the Tattvas, and are represented as the 4 faces of the creatures.
Geburah, is often symbolized with a Pentagram, or five pointed star, that has the Four Elements crowned by the Spirit. Thus, making 5 the number of Geburah on the Tree of Life, Geburah is a Red Force, and is symbolized on the Thoth card as Red Wheels, meaning that the force of Geburah (Severity) is the motive force of the Chariot.
Geburah is complimented by Chesed (Mercy) on the Tree of Life, and this compliment is seen in the constant usage of the number 4, Chesed's number. In the Thoth Chariot card there are Four Sphinx, and four columns (Four Universal Elements) holding up the starry canopy or heavens of Binah (The Great Mother- Empress Card key 3). These four elemental columns are called the “4 columns of the Tree of Life in a Solid Sphere", adding a little more of the arcane to this card. I suggest the curious student gets the book, THE QABALISTIC TAROT by Robert Wang, as it is a fine text for understanding the Arcane.
Above the Golden Armored figure on the Thoth Card is a crab, symbolizing the sign of Cancer Woven into the canopy is the word "ABRACADABRA", which Robert Wang thinks is an apparent pun on "ABRAHADABRA", a word that Crowley called, “one of the most important key numbers of the Liber Al...The word of the Aeon....the cypher of the Great Work" which when using Qabalistic Geomatria (numerology), (Book 777 of Crowley) adds up to 418. Using the math of numerology, we do the sum, 4+1+8= 13, the Key 13 of the Death Card of great spiritual change.
Crowley understood that something martial is going on in the Psyche of the Seeker themselves. Much like the Bhagavad Gita, where the pursuit of enlivenment is symbolized by warring factions. On this highest Path of Severity, the Soul Warrior of Geburah has reached a pinnacle, as shown by the 10 stars on his golden chest that represent Assiah or Matter. Seated in meditation, with the Holy Grail of 2 aspects in his hands: the Cup (Womb) that we look directly into when using our Imagination to produce ideas, i.e. the womb with a view.
The movement of the Chariot conceals a mystery (arcana) of great significance. The Chariot is reminiscent of the Greek Chariot of the Sun, Helios, as the four horses of the Sun pulled the Chariot of the Sun across the sky. This is significant as a representation, since the Chariot moves between the Light, centered in Tiphareth (Beauty) and the Supreme Darkness of the Limitless Light (Dark Energy) at the hidden side of Kether (Crown). Yet, there is even a more complex meaning suggested here, as the Sun is guided by the Moon! And in both Greek Mythology and the Qabalistic Tree of Life, the sun is subordinate to the moon. Since the Chariot is of the sign of Cancer, that is ruled by the Moon (and in which Jupiter is exalted), the Charioteer follows this philosophy of subordination to the Great Mother. The cardinal Path of the Moon, leads from Tiphareth (Beauty-Solar Logos) to Kether (Crown) is the Path of the High Priestess. Water (Pure Consciousness) takes precedence here and is represented by the Moon. The Charioteer is sitting on the Merkaba (Throne of God) for it is the Solar Self and Sun/Son of the Divine Creative and is the demiurge over Form. The Soul is the Authority over you as Form. Hence, the Soul is the "Living god" - The Psyche that is the true ruler of the body and not the faux you that is the ego. You are not of the ego, you as a persona, are of the Solar Self. Hence, the battle faced is the ego and the golden Warrior that is the Soul. The ego is the "man-made self" , a falsehood perpetrated by the Patriarchy, created to divide and conquer the personality and thereby, usurp the authority of the soul. Slaves must serve an outside authority. Enlightened free people, serve only the inner soul.
This is a Higher Path card, and requires much skrying, meditation, and arcane study, so this author recommends that you devote more time to this card than a brief lesson. At least, get the books I have recommended in this treatise and read them liberally! What is also noted here, is that the Male-Female relationship, is represented backwards here in our reflected world. The Male Force of the Universe is Subservient to the Female Force in order for Force to become Form. Idea is subservient to Understanding, for Life to progress. There is much to consider here, if one wishes to "Know thyself!"
The Santa Muerte Tarot- Key 7- The Chariot, is less symbolic of the Arcane of the Soul; However, it is about the unstoppable roll of the Chariot. Here, the feminine skeletons take the place of the Kerubim of the elements that pull along the Thoth Tarot. They are clearing the road so that the Travelers/Actors wagon/Chariot is ready for action, to travel, to conquer, to spread our influence to the world and inspire others in their own efforts. Hence, this card is presented as the dynamic arcana of control, triumph and conquest...of the Solar Self over matter. This chariot is the dynamic harmonic that pushes us towards a new and engaging phase that will see our efforts repaid. The powerful energy of warmth, bright and clear thought, and dynamic action are from this Charioteer, who is the Psyche of the Sun/ the Soul that is the "life of us all".
When the Chariot card is thrown during a reading, the querent is reminded:
- To devote themselves to the combination of activity and quietude so that they may have the drive to attain goals.
- It is a time of clearing out the past, moving beyond and beginning with new energy while taking responsibility for one's present condition.
- There is a need for victory here, by combining the images or content of the unconscious with the consciousness for the purpose of achievement.
- The Chariot also signifies that the querent has begun controlling a situation by the force of their personality....a focus of Will.
- The goal will need fighting for, but you have been granted the energy to win it!
- The desire for conquest.
- Spirit of adventure.
- The highest achievable good: The Grail.
- The Forces setting off.
- The path that leads forward.
- The searching for and finding one's own place in the world.
If ill defined by the surrounding cards:
- High handedness.
- Ultimate failure because of obstacles.
- Ego in control of the body's movement.