In both the Qabalistic Thoth Deck and Tarot of the Old Path, the Emperor is shown as a strong, potent Male figure.
In both decks, the Sign of Aries is attributed to the cards, as is shown by the Ram, and is a forceful sign that implies leadership.
The sign of Aries is ruled by Mars (the Red implies this) thereby exalting the Sun. Thus, in both the Tarot of the Old Path and Thoth Deck cards, the Sun is shown; above the head of the Old Path Emperor and behind the head of the Thoth Deck Tarot card. The symbol of the Sun is emphasized in the Tarot of the Old Path, by the sparrow hawk resting on the Emperor/s shoulder, as in the animal symbols, this Hawk is the bird associated with the Sun.
The Tarot of the Old path attributes the Planet Mercury and alchemical Air to the Emperor card, as this refers to Swift, active energy, under the control of rational thought.
In both Decks, you'll also find the Eagle symbol.
The Old Path Emperor is sitting on a golden throne, created with an Eagle above an Ankh, while the Thoth Deck Emperor has a two headed Eagle on his golden shield. Eagles also represent the Sun, as they are rumored to be the only bird or creature that can look directly at it.
Many of us know the Ankh as the Crux Ansata, the ancient symbol for Life, as it is the combination of the Feminine oval, and the Male Phallus and the cross of matter.
In the Old Path Emperor's left hand is a peach which in earth magic lore emphasizes unequaled qualities of character. The natural language of flowers is shown in the Tarot of the Old Path as irises (foreground) implying hope, power, and eloquence. This eloquence, power and hope is shown in the Thoth Deck Emperor card as Fleur-de-lys and bees.
The Tarot of the Old path, also realizes that the Emperor is responsible for human life as he defines the Laws of Physics, so in the background, are dancing happy children implying joy of being. The Sun shining bestows life on earth and the wholesomeness of humankind. The Emperor of the Old path has a scepter of crystal which may imply his rule (laws of physics) over the "crystalline light", or "star dust" that all manifestation is made of.
The Thoth Emperor is a more imposing figure, less a friend and more a Ruler. The Hebrew letter attributed to this card is the letter Tzaddi which is deemed a mistake, as Tzaddi-meaning "fish hook", is the letter assigned to the Star-key 17 of the Thoth Tarot, as the Path of Tzaddi. Hence, the true Hebrew letter to be assigned the Emperor should be the Hebrew letter Heh, which is the Path of Heh-meaning -Window/sight. His functions are determined by Binah-the Goddess, as he sets rules to form, under her authority. This is then the formative path as his actions are rationale and classified, as underscored by the bright red color of Binah in the world of Pure Spirit-The world of Atziluth. The Sun in the sign of Aries is energy at its most material state combined with authority and we all know that authority is not necessarily friendly.
In the Thoth Card, the Ram is resplendent and besides symbolizing Aries, it is also a symbol of a Wild, courageous, solitary creature who is also shown domesticated as a lamb and flag at the Emperor's feet. This implies the Laws of government, civilizing and/or domesticating the ram or "wild nature". The object of government.
In the Qabalistic Thoth Tarot, the Emperor is an important Alchemical Card, as he is the last part of the Triad represented in Key 2 (High Priestess) and Key 3 (Empress) ; Sulfur, Mercury, and Salt, in that order. He forms the symbol of Sulfur, as his arms and head form the Upright Triangle and his legs below form the Cross. In Alchemy Sulfur represents the Fiery Male Force of the Universe. So again we have representation of Fiery, active Energy, under the rule of Law that forms all life.The quality of this power is swift and violent, for if held too long, it is destructive.
His scepter is that of Aries, and the Orb and cross, represents his government has been established.
The Shield of the Two headed Eagle surrounded in a red disc represents the Alchemical red tincture which is the nature of Gold and the Sun. The White eagle of the Empress, is the nature of Silver and the Moon. As I have said before, there is no He without a She and vise versa.
The white light descending on him implies his authority derived from Chokmah, the creative Wisdom (The Word) and that it is exerted upon the 6th Sephiroth-Tiphareth (Beauty) often called, the organized man.
IN A DIVINATION BOTH CARDS IMPLY:
- Leadership qualities, such as dominance, authority,and worldly power.
- the control of government.
- masculine force.
- Courage, strength of character thru discipline.
- A capable and learned person.
- Emotions dominated by reason and intellect.
- Archetype of boss, father and authority figures.
- Overcoming of past difficulties with experience.
- Will listen to advice but follows his own rules and judgement.
- IF NEGATIVE: He's bad "mo-jo" ; insensitive, Indecisive, Impotent and maybe even Sexually perverted, as he has lost all authority over his passions. Weakness of character.
DIFFERENCES IN THE THOTH EMPEROR INTERPRETATION ARE:
- Emphasis on the the lightning phallus of Shiva, as shown by the base of the scepter in the Emperor's hand. This gives rise to the Tarot Wand.
- Once a trident, this is a symbol borne by the Phallic Gods, Neptune, Jupiter, Hades, Poseidon, Pluto and Lucifer, Also associated with Lancelot, guardian of the Holy Grail (Divine Womb) and Osiris.
- A magic man who has become the Husband of the Goddess, thus is "keeper of Her Property"....the true meaning of the Anglo-Saxon word Husband. Her Property are the Life Forms, he is the law that keeps them functioning.
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