Thoth-ATU 9-The Hermit
Santa Muerte-Key 9- The Hermit
The Thoth Tarot- ATU 9-The Hermit
The zodiacal attribution to the Hermit card is the sign of Virgo. Virgo is an earthly sign that represents the most receptive feminine form of earth. Virgo is ruled by Mercury and Mercury is exalted in Virgo as well. One might say that the most receptive form of Earth forms a layer of understanding over Hades; Mercury, a form of Hades, is also the fiery messenger of Spirit, that has descended into matter, signaling the reintegration by Spirit (a phallic symbol) into being. This is known as the "Formula of the Princess", the mode of fulfillment of the Great Work. Therefore, the fertility generated by this event and that of Virgo itself is shown as the Green Wheat background of the Thoth Deck Card.
The Hermit is a solitary figure, often displaying great aptitude for meditation and contemplation, and this is implied by the lone hermit figure of the Thoth Card and the Santa Muerte Tarot . The Thoth and the Santa Muerte Tarot both depict an elderly man symbolizing the wisdom of the ages.
The Thoth Hermit carries a lantern, implying intuitive knowledge. Also in the center of the Hermits lantern is the sigil of the Great King of Fire, who is also represented by the Hebrew word Yod-the secret fire, which is also the Hebrew letter attributed to this Thoth Tarot card. The Hebrew word, Yod, also means Hand. Hence, the hand of the Hermit is displayed as the center of the card. The image of the Thoth- Hermit is also bent into the shape of the letter Yod while being cloaked in the red robes of Binah, the Great Mother in whom he gestates. This is also called in the Western Mysteries, as listening to the loud silence.
The Hermit personifies powerful repose and inner concentration. He also forms the cross sum of the Moon card. Hence, he deals with the opening up of inner spaces and/or spaces of consciousness. Thereby, penetrating into the deepest abysses of the mysteries (Hound of Hell) . As Merlin is the servant of the Moon Goddess, whose sacred number if 3x3, he bears the number 9. A number that is also Yesod, the formative Sephiroth that is ruled by the Moon. The lamp form is that of an octahedron (having 8 sides), its inner sun shedding light on the mysteries of self. 8 is a number that indicates 2 worlds flowing into one another. O=2, the One " I" becomes I AM ; Therefore, 8 is not only a number of 2 worlds flowing into each other, but 8 sided stars and octagons are also considered the transitional form between the earthly square and the divine circle. Hence, introspection shows the utmost we can achieve when we strive towards the divine (globe) from the earthly sphere (cube).
As I have said, the Thoth Hermit symbolizes the Hebrew Letter Yod, meaning hand, and all letters of the Hebrew alphabet are combinations of this foundational letter. Yod is the first letter of the name Tetragrammaton ( YHVH) symbolizing the Farther who is Wisdom, and the highest form of Mercury. Therefore he can b e compared to the Logos; the Creator of all worlds, accordingly his representative in the physical world is the spermatozoon which is illustrated on the Thoth Tarot card. The figure of the Hermit seems to be staring at the Orphic egg which is conterminous with the Universe, and is wrapped in the iridescent many-colored serpentine energy of Mercury. He is also in the shape of a phallus (A. Crowley), with the spermatozoon flowing upward to be ejaculated into the Divine Feminine. Hence, the flowering of white/sperm as if hair.Before you think that Aleister Crowley was totally besotted with the phallus, introspection does indeed impregnate the Unconscious allowing rebirth of Self-Identity. Hence, the "stare" focused on the orphic egg/ egg of Akasha for that is the "egg"receiving the ejaculant and the 0 that becomes 2. The Hermit is pe-eminently one of union. He represents the first point of awareness by the Higher Self of The Supreme Spiritual Self, which requires the most erotic of imagery and idea supported by the Sepher Yetzirah, which attributes sexual love to the simple Hebrew letter Yod. However, this is not the mortal sexuality of coition, for the card is the essence of isolation and singularity. The "sexuality" is self- contained and self-sustaining (0=2), a quality cryptically described in the Golden Dawn documents as "prudence". This knowledge is expressed in the Pelasgian myth of creation, telling us that this egg refers back to Eurynome, the Mother of all things,
Eurynome was easily the most important Goddess of Pelasgian myth. She was the Great Goddess, Mother, Creatrix, Ruler, called the Goddess of All Things.
Eurynome was born from Chaos, and her first work was to separate the water from the sky. When she had accomplished this, she began to dance across the water. It was a beautiful, sensual dance of creation. As she danced, she danced South, and faster and faster she danced until a wind grew behind her. Eurynome caught this new thing, this wind, between her hands and rubbed it into a snake. The snake, called Ophion, watched as the Goddess danced and danced to keep herself warm. He saw Eurynome dancing across the waves and was filled with lust. He coiled his body around the Goddess seven times and made love to her as she danced.
Impregnated by Ophion, soon the Goddess lay the Universal Egg. Ophion wrapped his body around it seven times at Eurynome's bidding. As it opened, the earth spilled forth, born populated with animals and plants. (click on the above link for more information)...
The Thoth Tarot card, with its domesticated three headed dog Cerberus that guards the gates of Hell (Three heads= Past, Present and Future), also brings to mind The Legend of Persephone, and I would suggest that the student read this legend to further understand this card.To hint at the metaphor; will power kidnaps the personality, taking it deep within the inner-truth of Self, and thereby, causing a rebirth of personality.
This Thoth Trump, is illustrating the secret of life and all its workings. For instance, Yod=Phallus=Spermatozoon-Hand=Logos=Virgin. Crowley says in his book of Thoth, "There is perfect identity, not merely Equivalence, of the Extremes, the Manifestation, and the Method."
As you may note, in both Decks, Key 9, is about the solitary person who walks the path that leads to the Higher Self and perfection of the soul. It is the image of the Adept-Magus and their detachment from the material world of man. S/He's often so far advanced in psyche, that most people find him/her difficult to comprehend. However, this does not deter their willingness to light the path for those who sincerely wish to know the depths of self.
Dr. Paul Foster Case calls the Path of the Hermit, the 20th Path, The Path of Yod. In his text the THIRTY-TWO PATHS OF WISDOM, Dr. Paul Foster Case, states: " The Twentieth path is the Intelligence of Will, and is so called because it is the means of preparation of all, and each created being, and by this intelligence the existence of the Primordial Wisdom becomes known. "
The Qabalistic 20th path connects the 4th Sephiroth-Chesed-Mercy, to the 6th Sephiroth, Tipareth-Beauty. Tipareth being the Shining Sun/Son of the Divine Creative and/or the Soul, which is a "Golden Psyche". The Soul of each and all, is a warm, bright, light of collective intelligence, where all inner paths lead to and exit from.
The Santa Muerte-Key 9-The Hermit, is dealing with St. Death, as its foundation of mysteries. Hence, its long stretch of silence and removal, where we discover our own light and wisdom, is done in a casket for this Hermit image. Here he is holding his own light, lantern ready to illuminate the inner journey. He represents the paternal archetype, a wise and prudent master who functions for the individual as a guide and transitory figure who illuminates our way. All that pertains to the Thoth Hermit will also fit nicely here. Although the phallus is an interesting multi legged shape and the "egg"
held between his thighs, also shows these "legs". A centipede instead of a serpent and a "seed" instead of an orphic egg. Interestingly, it works.
The Hermit is also linked with the desert, the eremitic. In ancient times, Hermits were known to wall themselves up in a cave of mud brick dwelling/room, without window or link to the outside world, usually in the desert. Here they would take a long period of silence and introspection, to reach "enlightenment" Once could say that the eremitic lived in.a type of casket.
Etymology. The word hermit comes from the Latin ĕrēmīta, the latinisation of the Greek ἐρημίτης ( erēmitēs ), "of the desert", which in turn comes from ἔρημος ( erēmos ), signifying "desert", "uninhabited", hence "desert-dweller"; adjective: "eremitic".Hermit - Wikipedia
When the Hermit-Key 9-is thrown during a divination:
If ill defined by the surrounding cards:
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