Thoth- ATU 9-The Hermit
#9. In thought and word and deed, I rest my life, from day to day, union the sure Foundation of Eternal Being.
From the Thirty Two paths of Wisdom: 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 zodiacal attribution to the Tarot 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 crust 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 on the Thoth Card.
Haindl Tarot-Key 9- The Hermit
The Tarot Hermit is a solitary figure, that represents the old wise man that is the main aspect of the Egyptian god Thoth and is often displaying great aptitude for meditation and contemplation. This is implied by the lone hermit figure of both the Thoth ATU 9 Card and the Haindl Tarot Key 9. The Thoth Tarot shows and elderly Thoth-symbolizing the wisdom of the ages. The Haindl Tarot just shows a solitary ancient. Both the Thoth and Haindl Hermit carries a lantern, implying intuitive knowledge. Also in the center of the Thoth Hermit's lantern is the sigil of the Great King of Fire, who is also represented by the Hebrew word Yod-the secret fire, which is the letter of this Thoth Tarot card. The Hebrew word, Yod, also means Hand and is shown in the upper left of the Haindl Tarot Card, and bottom left of the Thoth Card. 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.
The Haindl Hermit, also has some arcane symbols. Begining with the Rune I (ice), which cloaks the mountain top the ancient is standing on. He is surrounded by owls, implying his is surrounded in the mysteries of spirit. Faces of gnomes are seen in the rocks, these represent the elemental forces alive in Nature. The Shepard' staff, represents his teaching abilities as a guide. The lantern represents the human knowledge past down from generation to generation and the Eye (I) in the Triangle represents the Divine Creative.
In such a solitary state, one often is able to hear the wisdom of the Spirit/Mind by tuning out the babble of the brain. This is also called in magic, listening to the loud silence. As I have said, the Thoth Deck 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 is 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 Thoth 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. The Thoth Tarot card, with its domesticated 3 headed dog Cerberus that guards the gates of Hell, not only represents the Past (facing backwards), Future (head facing forward) but also the Present (Face looking at hermit) but also brings to mind The Greek Legend of Persephone, and I would suggest that the student read this legend to further understand this card.
In this Thoth Trump, is illustrated 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, ATU/ 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. The Thoth Hermit corresponds to the archetype or the "selfless servant of the Self", who is searching for Truth in souls of human beings. Deep within our internal silence, we will find this intelligence, whose wisdom is always available, one just needs to go into deep introspection, listening only to the silence of the Greater Self.
When the Hermit-ATU/Key 9-is thrown during a divination:
- A search for wisdom and truth.
- Counsel and sound judgment.
- A solitary soul
- A time of re-evaluation and soul searching
- Discretionary caution.
- Inner wisdom often called enlightenment.
- Spiritual inspiration pointing the way on life's journey.
- Contemplation, introspection and space.
- Needing more knowledge that can only be attained by listening closely to the inner self.
- The Divine Marriage within.
- Completing karma through service.
- A stage in life where wisdom it sought through introspection and isolation.
- Using your work in the world and uniting it with the Spiritual realms to attain the Highest state of Mind.
- Being yourself by pursuing the "above all things, know thyself" , deep inner philosophy.
If ill defined by the surrounding cards (Thoth) or reversed (Haindl) it implies:
- Stubbornness to the point of foolishness.
- A closed mind,
- Bad advice.
- Only looking at the surface value.
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