The Tarot of Eli-Major Arcana: Thoth- ATU 4-The Emperor & Gothic Tarot- Key 4-The Emperor

Western hermetic Qabalah, astrological, numerical, Tantric, and Alchemical Tarot Card Comparisons.

· Gothic Tarot

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Thoth- ATU 4-The Emperor

Sun of the morning; Chief among the Mighty

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Gothic Tarot- Key 4-The Emperor

Structure and Order.

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The Thoth Emperor-ATU 4 is the 15th Qabalistic Path of Heh (He) that runs between Tiphareth (Beauty-the Solar Logos) to Chokmah (Wisdom-Lesser Creator who rules over manifestation) and is known as the Constituting Intelligence ( Dr. Paul Foster Case). When one looks at the Emperor card they see the Hebrew Letter Tzaddi rather then the Hebrew Letter Heh. Confusion reigns here, as even Crowley seemed uncertain about the Path of Tzaddi and the Path of Heh. He wrote: "It is finally to be observed that the white light that descends upon him indicates the position of this card in the Tree of Life .His authority is derived from Chokmah, the creative Wisdom, the Word, and is exerted upon Tiphareth, the organized man.[page-78 of the Book of Thoth]. This puts the Emperor on the 15th Path of Tzaddi.

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Then there is the amalgamation of multiple states of the One Energy, known as the Garden of Eden. Here again Crowley proposes and interchange of the Emperor (Tzaddi) with the Star (Heh) which most Tarot Scholars of Qabalah disagree. In dealing with the Star, the scholars describe the Emperor as the "fiery aspect of the Garden of Eden", to which the Higher Self relates, while the Star is the Eden of personality. Therefore, the Emperor is the Self Observation of the One (Self-Awareness) and therefore, Heh, meaning "window or Sight", becomes Heh-The Window that reveals the Light of the Father. It is also the first path to which a sensor function is attributed in the Sepher Yetzirah (primary book of Qabalah), suggesting that "I" sight is the first of the senses as Aries is the first in the sequence of the Zodiac. Aries, as the first sign, emerges directly from Chokmah, the Sphere of the Zodiac. Also, as shown on the Rider-Waite-Smith and Golden Dawn cards, the Emperor sits on a grey granite throne, the color attributed to the sphere of Chokmah, and the Aries Rams decorating the throne.

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Rider, Waite, Smith-The Emperor-Key 4-

Whatever terms we used to describe the Emperor, he is the bridge between The Father (Chokmah) and the Son/Sun (Tiphareth). This is easily seen as the very fact that the Son/Sun of Tiphareth is exalted in the sign of this Path, Aries, indicates that the Emperor exercises some control of the solar energy of the Higher Self. Hence, the Path of Heh, is called the Constituting Intelligence, meaning that it assists in the construction or building up of the Light of Tiphareth (solar Soul) from the utter darkness of the Upper Triangle/Supernal Triangle, much like genetic structure directs the rising of the plant from the intense darkness of the Earth. Such an assistance can be seen in using an window box to sprout seeds.

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Because of our Divine Inheritance from the Demiurge (Lesser Creator) and the Great Mother (Binah-Female aspect of the Demiurge) we are all the "Shades" of consciousness. Modern psychology has called these Shades of Higher Consciousness, the Unconscious, the Subconscious and the waking Consciousness which just about every elementary school child has heard of. However, hearing of a thing is not knowing the thing. Because of the evolution of subjective thought, from Mythology, to fundamental Religions, and now to the modern science of Psychology, we are beginning to easily deal with the shades of higher consciousness within ourselves and are experiencing a New Age (The Age of Aquarius/ Age of Horus) of enlightenment.

The Higher we realize ourselves in consciousness or on the Self Tapestry of the Tree of Life, the more the student understands that the Trump or Cards of the Major Arcana, only point the way towards understanding concepts that the mind cannot otherwise grasp.

By beginning to understand the next Five Trumps/Paths, [THE EMPEROR, THE EMPRESS, THE HIGH PRIESTESS, THE MAGUS, THE FOOL], the initiate will be developing the consciousness of the Horus----the 22nd century human.

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Because of Modern Physics, we understand that there is only One Energy that cannot be created nor destroyed, only transformed, and the student of the Tarot knows that all the 78 cards of the Tarot deck represent Transformations of the One. From the One, emergence the opposites, which are activating the formative, Male (Electric) and Female (Magnetic) communion. Therefore, it is accurate to state that all Male figures are Chokmah (Jah) and Binah (YHVH Elohim) is that of all female. The robes they wear, represent tie different planes and/or dimensions of our mufti-verse, which are actually vibratory rate that are either Force (male) Kether or Form (Female) Binah, and/or their intertwining of vibration (The Divine Union of Goddess/God) that makes all things possible.

The Qabalist knows that the "Big Bang" came from what is the Source of Will and Energy, Kether, thus the ejaculation of Energy, making the Kether male (Male is not a sex here, but an action). The One became Two, Androgynous, when I became Am, which is known as Chokmah and Binah, which should be stated Chokmah/Binah, just as Yin/Yang or Time/Space are known to be inseparable and established at the same moment. Thus, with some authority we can say that the “I “is male and the “Am” is female, for one is Wisdom (Chokmah) and the latter is Understanding (Binah)...and we can't experience one without the other!

In the Tarot, THE FOOL represents the One Energy, THE MAGUS and the HIGH PRIESTESS, are the Macrocosm into Microcosmic, first differentiation of Male and Female energy polarity. Pure Consciousness, known as the "root of Water" is represented by the HIGH PRIESTESS and her consort, THE MAGUS, is considered psychologically as the Will. Thus the term I Am, is understood as the intercourse of consciousness and will. Like I've said before, it's your Real name.

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The mating of the HIGH PRIESTESS, to the MAGUS, is described in Robert Wang's book: THE QABALISTIC TAROT as, ".... the activity of the directing Will of the One on the Great Ocean of undifferentiated consciousness which It has Itself projected” [Big Bang] ( The bracketed words are my own). Here we think of the reflexive qualities of the Divine Creative ; The Divine creates, idea/thought, then the mind/understanding to hold that thought. Thus we have the concept of the Universe as a Mirror, where everything is the perception and reflected activity of the Divine Spirit on its Dark Energy/ Matter Self, a process which the various and varying symbols of the Tarot are attempting to suggest.

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The reason Crowley has positioned THE EMPEROR, so that the body forms a triangle and a cross, is because he is representing the alchemical symbol of Sulfur. This representation is because of the Alchemical explanation of the Divine-Self Interaction in terms of Sulfur, Salt and Mercury. In Tarot Alchemy , Mercury is THE MAGUS, THE EMPRESS is Salt, and THE EMPEROR is sulfur. This may seem as little more than obscure abstraction: However, when we consider that THE MAGUS, (Philosophic Mercury) acts upon THE HIGH PRIESTESS (Pure Consciousness) and by Union they are transformed into THE EMPEROR (Sulfur) and THE EMPRESS (Salt), we are actually considering the quite basic attributes of our own consciousness.

THE EMPRESS is on the 14th Path of Daleth (meaning door) which is above the Path of THE EMPEROR, simply because without her manifestation of form, he would have nothing to rule and/or set measurement for. On the Path of Heh, the Emperor is a transformation of the MAGUS (Will). Basically, when we are classifying images according to color, subject, or other criterion, we are calling THE EMPEROR into play. As does THE EMPEROR, we are acting upon form via perspective/observation. Another way to see this exercise of rule, is that if the subconscious (mind of the Empress) and Unconsciousness (High Priestess) didn't send up form from their depths, as a stream of images to be classified by the differentiating exercise of reason, Will would have nothing to control or transform. Therefore, THE EMPEROR, albeit a potent masculine force, functions as determined by THE EMPRESS.

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As I have stated: THE EMPEROR, is the Path of Heh and its function is determined by Binah who is pure fruition. The Path of Heh, is a formative path of rational and classifying activities. The Thoth Card’s bright Red color is that of Mars/ Aries, ) in the World of Pure Spirit known as Atziluth, albeit, that the male and female forces are seen as more interwoven in the lower levels as we go down the Tree of Life, the assumption that Chokmah and Binah are the only "Pure" states of Male and Female force is in error; As Chokmah(Wisdom), meaning the primary quality of maleness, is a Hebrew female noun. Taking the point of view that whatever gives birth is exercising a primary female quality at the moment of birth, then all that is inherent in the male is inherent in the female and visa versa. We can mentally see this by understanding that the Creation of Chokmah, gave birth to both maleness, and femaleness. 

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The students of Carl Jung's Psychology know that he stated the "male harbors the perfect female image in his unconscious, as the female harbors the perfect male image in her." unconscious", these being the "counter sexual component" necessary for the transformation of force and form. Jung also called the "counter-sexual components", the Anima (female) in males and the Animus (Male) male in females. The Anima, a Latin word meaning, "a current of air, wind, breath, the vital principle, life, soul" and the Animus is Latin for "the Rational Soul;life;the mental powers, intelligence". Thus we can see that THE EMPRESS is Anima/Spirit /Psyche and THE EMPEROR is Animus/Rational soul /Will, making the perfectly developed male type on the Paths THE EMPEROR and the perfectly developed female type, THE EMPRESS. These are the pure intelligent forces that we meet and actually converse with on the Paths and must be in harmonious union within each of us; if any one is repressed, only dysfunction can occur.

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If we think of the One as a Human Brain, albeit a simplistic comparison, then one has become two in the brain, female left and male right in One Intelligent collective organism. The Soul is made of the Empress and Emperor United.

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Since the Sun of Tiphareth (Soul-Beauty) is in the sign of Aries, which is the sign of This Path, indicates that THE EMPEROR exercises some control over the solar forces of the Higher Self.

Thus, we have the justified term -the Constituting Intelligence meaning that THE EMPEROR assists in the building up of Light of Tiphareth from the utter-darkness of Limitless Light of the Supernal Triangle.. This Path of Heh, could also be considered as the "start of time" in infinite space. In the Thoth card, this importance of Tiphareth to THE EMPEROR is illustrated by the Sun behind his head and the overall two colored scheme of Martian reds and Sun yellows. These two colors also suggest a furious/"divine frenzied" rush of often short-lived activity.

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In the Sepher Yetzirah (Qabalistic text) the letter Heh is a simple word meaning, sight. This is well represented in THE EMPEROR, since he is the "Fiery Aspect of the Garden of Eden" of which the Higher Self relates as a Self-observation of the One. It is the first path that is attributed to a function, suggesting that sight is the first of the senses, as Aries is the first sign of the Zodiac. This Path of Heh, THE EMPEROR, is what I call the First "I" sight, while the EMPRESS is the "Am" of understanding (an inner sight I call a "Womb with a view")...Together they are the "I AM", the Counter Sexuality of the One Mind/Energy and the existence of "I" and "Other", making the 0 of the infinite 2.

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All this contributes to the understanding that the Constituting Intelligence is the first phase of a natural cycle, such as Aries bringing forth Spring. This understanding is shown as the lamb at the Emperor's feet and the Ram headed wand. Paternal Power is shown by the bees and Fleur de Lys. The two headed Eagle in front of a crimson disc that is on the Emperor's shield, symbolizes the Alchemist's red tincture related to the Sun and Gold. There is a similar eagle on THE EMPRESS card that refers to the Moon and Silver.

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the gothic tarot- key 4-the emperor

None of the metaphysical, zodiacal or alchemical, images/symbols are ment to be in the Anne Stokes art of the Gothic Tarot-Key 4-The Emperor. This seems to be a fantasy Elven Image of an stern and powerful Emperor. The Staff is a Moon staff, which implies the Feminine influence, as well as, the green colors of his royal wardrobe. The red of Aries/Mars is not found. The Windows behind him give a view of flying dragons, so I suppose the Qabalistic idea of Heh (window) is represented. However, this is the Emperor Card in this tarot deck, so the meanings for the Thoth Emperor apply.

When THE EMPEROR card is thrown during a reading it emphasizes: 

  • The Principle of Personal Power and Leadership.
  • Building a pure base of Knowledge while remaining open minded.
  •  Pointing towards success, authority, stability and ambition in gain or achievement.
  •  Self-realization of Life Force and Personal Power.
  • Creativity.
  • Perception. 
  • Stability.
  • Realism.
  • Objectivity.
  • Sense of responsibility.

If ill-defined by attending cards, the querent is up against:

  •  A dominant boss, or authority figure (s) who sets rules, boundaries, definitions and analysis.
  • High handedness.
  • Perfectionism.
  • Cleverness without intuition.
  • Rationality as a prison.
  • The restriction of reality.

Thank you for your interest, comments and supportive donations. Your generosity blesses you. May you live long and prosper.

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