Above all things, know thyself!
Thoth- ATU XIX-The Sun
The Golden Tarot- Key 19-The Sun (Il Sole)
In Western Hermetic Qabalah, The Sun Tarot Card is assigned the Hebrew letter Resh (Means-Head) and is the letter assigned to ATU 19-The Sun. Hence the Head is seen as the Sun of the Body. It is the Head-Sun that rises above the Earth and the lower animal thoughts of the survival thinking subconscious. The Sun, is cited as the Thirtieth Path and/or the Collective Intelligence, in In Dr. Paul Foster Case's Tarot instruction called [The Thirty-Two Paths of Wisdom], He states that: The Collective Intelligence of the Sun (Son) exercises control over the 12 signs of the zodiac (12 guideposts of Personality), as shown on this card by the 12 rays radiating outward from the central orb, as well as, a link between the personalities (constellations)that have been experienced in different incarnations.
The The Golden Tarot-Key 19-The Sun, concentrates on the warmth and glory of the Sun. Here a chubby cherub, a popular figure in Renaissance art (known as a putto), is standing on a blue cloud, while holding up the radiant head of the God Apollo., the Sun god of both the Greeks and Romans. With the appearance of the Sun the twins of mythology-Apollo and Diana(the Moon goddess), are united, representing the union of opposites; of light and dark, movement and repose, day and night etc. Since the Sun represents the "head", their union can also represent the merging of the consciousness and unconsciousness which according to the psychoanalyst Carl Jung is the perfect state of Mind.
The Path of Resh (The Sun) is the first path of the Personality triad of paths rising on the Tree of Life from Yesod (foundation) to Hod (splendor). The Path of Resh, the encountering student, will experience the intellectual-formative side of this conscious energy, as an activating force of the Personality, the Higher Self and/or the Spiritual Self become the composites of the masculine-intuitive dynamic, Yod, and a feminine-Intellectual-formative , Heh, that together combine opposing forces, producing a set of equalized forces called Vau/Vav (YHVH).
All of this is explained in greater detail in my class reference book by Robert Wang: THE QABALISTIC TAROT (a text book of Mystical philosophies). For now, suffice it to say that The Sun-collective, assembles all the component parts of the Personality, on these lower paths, by infusing them with "light and Warmth" which are considered intellectual qualities. Thus the Path of the Sun (Resh) is considered the highest level of human intellect and the Path of personality to the Soul, as The Star-ATU/Key 17, is considered the highest path of human emotions. What may be curious to the discerning student of Tarot, is that when you combine The Sun's high intellect with the high emotion of The Star card, the balanced effected is represented by The Tower-ATU/Key 16, which at first glance seems the opposite of balance, if not outright chaos. However, what we are witnessing here, is the destruction of the unworthy elements of the "man-made personality", so that the Sun (son) Solar Personality is free to arise to its Source. It pays to remember that none of these Tarot Cards Stand Alone, as all 78 of them pertain to intellectual Paths of the One Mind, and you are the Sun/Son of that One, where all Paths join.
The Lower Paths on the Tree of Life, Tau, Shin and Resh, (The Universe, The Aeon, The Sun-), are the symbols of the component parts of the Personality which functions through the body-vehicle, as Spirit's experience-collecting apparatus. The Higher Self must function through the Personality if it is to influence the physical plane, as Pure Spirit must function through the Higher Self that is "One Mind" and the Body to establish "Whole Self". The fact that we perceive separation between this ternary Self of Spirit-Mind-Body, which are aspects of Oneself, is to necessitate understanding of each of the components that are in a state of infinite connectivity (Quantum Entanglement). The Tree of Life does describe, by its pattern, a degree of separation, as Sephiroth, but the Paths show us they are all connected and that the perception of separation is to expedite understanding of a dimension of conscious energy. We are all an Immortal Being, Spirit-Mind-Body. The Word Spirit is just another way to describe the Original Will and a poor attempt towards Understand the One Energy; the Word Mind, is another way to Understand Womb, and the Body is the Organic Sensuality necessary for intimacy and/or the sensual experience of taking information and turning it into experience and/or knowledge. We are a Whole Sun when we are One Being, who is of Ternary Manifestation which is all connected on the Tree of Life, i.e., Spirit/Mind/Body.
Perception, is noted for its wide varieties from one organism to another, so it is up to each individual student to literally create their own Qabalah. The Path of Resh is crucial in developing the individual Qabalah (Receiving). Upon journeying this Path of the Collective Intelligence, one will receive the imprint and acceptance of "Spirit guides: or those beings who direct the inner learning experience of the student. On the Path of Resh (head) the candidacy for Tiphareth (Beauty), The Conscious of the Sun (Son), and /or Higher Self, is begun. The twin babies in the Fool Card, and the Bride and Grooms Children in the Lovers card are both earlier incarnations of the 2 dancing winged children that are found in the Thoth Sun Card. According to Crowley:
"They represent the male and female, eternally young, shameless and innocent. They are dancing in the light, and yet they dwell upon earth. They represent the next stage which is to be attained by mankind, in which complete freedom is alike the cause and the result of the new aeon of solar energy upon the earth."
[The Book of Thoth, Pg., 114]
The Intellectual/Spiritual Path leading into Hod, is where inner discoveries are made as the Inner Teachers exert their influence on the material world, clarifying the relationship between mind and body. This Path of Resh, will help the student understand the control and limitations of intellect. Therefore, the Path of the Sun, is also the path of” awakening", that helps the student understand the use of the tremendous "Spiritual/Sexual Force" of Yesod (Foundation) that is known as the "secret" or Arcane force manipulated by the initiate of the Mysteries. This force has many names, such as "Serpent Force", Kundalini, or "Life Force", and even The Red Goddess "Babylon", all of which fall short in proper perception, as most definitions do. This force must be experienced to be understood, and proper preparation for its "rising" must be made by experiencing of the Perceptual Intelligence on the Path of Shin (The Aeon).
Yesod, is attributed to the Moon which governs the ebbing and flowing of the Astral Light (Akashic Fluid and/or the Odic force) and is the sexuality beneath our material existence. Hence, the Sun and Moon union also represents the "dance of the twins". Hod is Mercury, the first similarity of the specific Personality. The Personality is hermaphroditic and/or androgyne, as male and female qualities have yet to be separated out as specifics, The Path of the Sun, when considered developmentally, is the point of childhood of the emerging Personality as it builds toward an earthly incarnation. By traveling upward, towards Hod, we are once again experiencing this initial innocence: a kind of re-experiencing youth and/or a rebirth. The initiate reaches a stage where there is some recollection of the Source from which we emerged.
The dancing Twins, on the Thoth Sun card, also symbolize the purest-innocent expression of the electric-male (Earth) and the magnetic female (Water) principles in physical manifestation. These Twins are also a reference to the astrological sign of Gemini, the sign that links Taurus (Earth) and Cancer (Water). The ancient Greeks and Romans also referred the sign Gemini, to Apollo and the Sun.
In the Thoth Sun card, the green mound beneath the Twins, symbolizes fertility, as its shape shows aspiration to the Higher Self. The Children dance, free from enclosure, symbolizing freedom from the "prejudices of the people that date morally from the about 25 hundred B.C." [Crowley] Here, the Sun, is the Rose-Cross expanded from four arms to 12 rays and embracing the whole of creation in its rays, it is the “adorable Fire” that is the vital life force of all creation. This relationship of Apollo and the Sun (son of god) may be easier seen in the Traditional Tarot of Rider-Waite-Smith, key 19 the Sun as the child riding the white horse.
This expanded "Inner Sun" is felt by the initiate, as a very warm rising, fertile power, and an adorable fire, that does change the physiology of the physical form into the " Master’s Body" and/or the Philosopher's Stone.
The Hexagram is the symbol of the composite Thirtieth Path which is compressed of the 4 Elements, the Signs of the Zodiac, and the Planets, all under the Rulership of the Sun. Thus, the Hexagram is the symbol of the perfect integration of Personality and Higher Self (Tiphareth -meaning Beauty). The Sun is also called the "Splendor of the Material World” which is representative of the intellect acting upon the dual human condition of, unconsciousness and the awake consciousness of the physical body. Thus, the Sun is a point of connection with the Greater Life that is comprised by balancing the human intellect with the Higher Intellect that is the "Sun (Son) of God".
For the initiate, experiencing the Path of Resh, is very profound as it is the introduction to the inner-sun, which is the light of the personality, as the outer sun is the light of the physical world. What one tends to forget, while experiencing the warmth and light of this inner-sun (Kundalini), one's personality cannot look directly into this solar intelligence, any more than they can at the physical sun, without suffering damage to the faux ego. As shown by The Tower Card; equilibrium will be reached by "burning away" what is unworthy of the Higher Personality. This "burning", which is most wanted by those who seek the Truth of Self, can be most uncomfortable to the ignorant of Self Truth for it will vaporize the false Self that is the man-made ego. However, as the 12th Century Sufi Master- Mustafa Jahaladine Rumi exclaimed in his prayer to the Higher Self, "Give me the Burning"!
As I have said before, working on the Paths brings about definite physiochemical changes in the human body and as one of the most noted teachers of the Hermetic Qabalah, Dr.Paul Foster Case has stated in his study course, The Thirty-Two Paths of Wisdom,"...marked inner differences from the average person, are due to psychological contrasts in the mental state of the ordinary human beings, but they are also the outer signs of organic changes inside the skin of the new creature. He [She] is chemically and structurally unlike genus homo. There are different constituents in his [her] blood stream. Through his [her] nervous system pass currents of force not present in most human bodies because in his [her] organism channels are open which are closed in the physical vehicle of most persons. Centers in the nervous system and in the brain, and glands related to them, function differently in the body of an adept from the way they do in the bodies of the greater number of his [her] contemporaries." (The brackets are my own addition, as it was written when the proper He was used to describe both sexes.) This is the same physico chemical change that happens to adepts in the Tantric Arts, where balanced Divine Male and Divine Female energy opens up the Divya Sidhis or magic abilities.
The Qabalist always bears in mind that the Personality, the component parts of which are represented on these lower Paths of the Tree of Life, functions through the body as an experience-collecting vehicle for the Soul/Spirit. To divorce the body from the Spirit, by using words as identity, is a most serious mistake of divisionism, for then we are mentally and thus physically divorcing ourselves from the very Powers that created the body! The body is the crucible of the Alchemist, and the Sun is the important symbol, as well as, the furnace heat that is the alchemical process of turning the lead of unworthy thought into the gold of Higher Mind. As Crowley said in his Book of Thoth, Pg. 113:
"This is one of the simplest of the cards; it represents Heru-ra-ha, the Lord of the New Aeon, in his manifestation to the race of men as the Sun Spiritual, Moral, and Physical. He is the Lord of Light, Life, Liberty and Love. This Aeon has for its purpose the complete emancipation of the human race."
When the Sun, ATU/Key 19 is thrown, it implies:
- The querent shall experience gain, riches, glory and sometimes warmth of love.
- Maybe called arrogant which is often a misunderstanding of their glowing self-confidence.
- The querent might make great displays of vanity but this is only seen when accompanied by very negative cards.
- The dance of the divine twins, can also be considered a meeting of the soul (solar) mates.
- However, this most esoteric and requires a Lover’s or Love card to clarify as an exoteric event.
- Striving for the light.
- Reconciliation with the shadow side and realization of the innermost (highest) self.
- Acceptance of Life.
- Rational approach.
- Sexual desire.
If ill defined by the surrounding cards, it implies:
- Personality cult.
- Delusions of grandeur.
- Loss of confidence.
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