The Tarot of Eli: The Tarot of the Old Path-Key 9-The Wise One & The Thoth Tarot-ATU 9- The Hermit

western hermetic qabalah, tantric, astrological, alchemical, and numerical Tarot Card Comparisons .

· Old Path Tarot

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tarot of the old path- key 9-the wise one

The Thoth Tarot-key/ATU 9-is named The Hermit, The Tarot of the Old path -key 9-is called The Wise One . As you can see there are many similarities to these cards and both the Artists -Lady Frieda Harris of the Thoth Deck and Sylvia P. Gainsford, and the seven other artist of the Tarot of the Old Path, filled their cards with Arcane wisdom. The zodiacal attribution to this 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).This is known as the "Formula of the Princess" , the mode of fulfillment of the Great Work. Thus, the fertility generated by this event and that of Virgo-"the Virgin" itself, is shown in both sets of cards as The Green Wheat background of the Thoth Deck Card and the Green robe of The Wise One.

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thoth-atu 9-the hermit

The Hermit is a solitary figure, often displaying great aptitude for meditation and contemplation, and this is implied by the Snowy Mountain retreat shown on the Tarot of the Old Path card or the lone hermit figure of the Thoth Deck Card. Both Tarot Decks show and elderly man, symbolizing the wisdom of the ages.

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The Tarot of the Old Path, Wise One, displays a book of Knowledge in the crook of his arm, and a lantern on a staff, implying enlightenment and intuitive knowledge.

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The Thoth Tarot-Key 9- Hermit also carries a lantern, implying the same intuitive knowledge; however, in the center of the Hermits lantern is the sigil of the Great King of Fire. The Hebrew word Yod, which is the Letter of presented as the Path of the Thoth Tarot card, is the Secret Fire. Also, the Word itself means Hand. Hence, the Hand of the Hermit is displayed as the center of the card, The image of the Thoth Tarot 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.

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The Tarot of the Old Path, The Wise One, has a rabbit at the foot of his staff, this implies in the language of animals, one inexperienced in life and willing to learn. He wears an anchor emblem at his neck, implying hope and salvation that is given by the Wise One's guidance. The garment of dignity is the cloak, that is also a veil between the self and the world of man. Here he has raised his right arm displaying the Four Elements of Alchemy, earth, water, fire and air; air being shown as a Brimstone butterfly...a very subtle way of bringing Hades into the picture. The Fire has melted the snow, revealing mossy stones and trefoil clover which in the language of plants means divine knowledge gained by hard endeavor. The stream that is manifesting beneath the raised robe, splits into ten, symbolizing the ten planets, Uranus, Mercury, the Moon,, Venus, Jupiter, Neptune, Mars, the Sun, Pluto and Saturn.

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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 symbolizing the Farther who is Wisdom, and the highest form of Mercury. Thus, 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 Deck 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. The "Hand of God" is also the Cosmic Archetypal homiod form that sports a thumb that can rotate 360 degrees. Without that finger-thumb combination, no matter how big the brain, technology can't be created nor can planets be terraformed to live.

The Thoth Deck card, with its domesticated three headed dog Cerberus that guards the gates of Hell , who not only symbolizes the past-present and future, but also suggests that the student read this legend of Persephone and Hades, to further understand this card. In this 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."


  • A search for wisdom and truth.
  • Counsel and sound judgment.
  • Knowledge
  • A solitary soul
  • Meditation
  • A time of re-evaluation and soul searching
  • Discretionary caution.
  • Inner wisdom often called enlightenment.
  • Spiritual inspiration pointing the way on life's journey.

If reversed:

  • Stubbornness to the point of foolishness.
  • A closed mind,
  • Bad advice.
  • Isolation.
  • Only looking at the surface value.


  • 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.
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As you may note, in both Tarot Decks, Key 9 , is about the solitary person who walks the path that leads to the Higher Self and perfection of the soul as he walks the Path of Yod from Tiphareth the "Sun of god" to Chesed, the Architect-Intelligence that designed the Microcosm. It is the image of the Adept-Magus and his detachment from the material world of man. He perspectives are often so far expanded into psyche, that most people find him/her difficult to comprehend. However, this does not deter his willingness to light the path for those who sincerely follow his guidance.

Thank you for your interest and comments. May you live long and prosper. And for all you patrons out there, Thank you and many blessings.