The tarot of Eli: The Tarot of The Old Path- Three of Swords & The Thoth Tarot- 3 of Swords-Sorrow

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

· Old Path Tarot

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tarot of the old path-three of swords

The Ruling element of the Three of Swords is Air. Air is the Element of Mind, as the mind has currents of creative flow caused by heated passions or the calculating- cold of rational thinking.

In the Tarot of the Old Path Three of Swords, we have a young woman, dressed in the yellow colors of air and holding a sword, weeping over the death of a young fair-haired knight who is lying in the wind-swept grass.

The winning combatant is still ready for battle and stands over the slain youth.

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thoth-3 of swords-sorrow

In past blogs about Binah, you may remember that Binah is the 3rd Sephiroth called Understanding,
She is also named the Sanctifying Intelligence and the Parent of Faith. Here is the implication that no religion of any sect could have a "church" without this underlying structure of Sanctifying Intelligence. As Mary is the Church, in Catholic doctrine, so is Binah the Parent of Faith...not the faith itself, but its parental intelligence that is the foundation of organization, structure and sanctity.

You may ask, "What has this to do with sorrow?" To make this simple, she is the Crone in this card, and the Crone is the state of mental energy that is the death of the you that you think you are, and she is also the belief in the "you" that you don't remember.

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As the concept of Virgin, we have Binah as High Priestess, as concept of Mother we have Binah as Empress and here She is as the beginning of Crone which forms in Geburah as Saturn the ruler of Time.

Let me explain many of us think that 'freedom of choice" is happiness, but we forget that to have "freedom of choice", we must have a beginning and an end, for without measurement there is no choice. As Spirit, we just Are, there is no up, no down, no in and no out; We just Are. But as a Spirit who runs a material body, we have the "measure of self" and the freedom to choose our identity, motion and actions but are also limited to Time. We are both the cause and effect of our perspectives and "self" is our own responsibility.

This card is a 3, the number of the major arcana--key 3 The Empress and represents Her great Sorrow of the Thousand named Mother who is both Life and Death, is felt. For she has given birth to Beautiful Children who must end. Also, her beautiful children often think themselves into an ugliness imposed on them by manmade words. This hurts a loving mother, as does the fact that those beautiful children must end, is yet another addition to the burden of sorrow which arrives with every loving attachment in this world of matter.

Many of us know that to love is to end in loss...but we will love after loss anyway. Love is our nature, gain, and loss, are a measurement. The Wise also know that loss is the beginning of a new gain. This understanding doesn't lessen sorrow, it just helps us move forward with tears running down our face. Thus, there is strength gained in understanding sorrow, instead of fear of sorrow that only weakens us.

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It is also called the Lord of Sorrow, who is Saturn, a concept of Time as a parent who must eat its own children, as fearfully represented in Paul Ruben's painting. So once again we get confused by sexual connotations. But energy in expression is male and female in reception. The Planet attributed to the 3 of Swords is Saturn in the sign of Libra. The Angels of the Decan are Hayayel and Hoquiam.

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Here we have the influence of Binah in the Astral World of Yetzirah. The Power of Saturn is destructive and initiatory, bringing a presence of pain and hardship. But as we may know, hardship and suffering are often where we learn life's greatest lessons. So, the Dark Sterile Mother, is not evil, she is a Sanctifying Intelligence who by the process of time/death brings one's soul back to its purity. In the 3 of Swords, Saturn unbalances the Scales of Libra, in order that they may be rebalanced in an improved way. So, the Crone is the perpetrator of "Tough Love". and for a Mother, having to use tough love to teach her beautiful children, brings a sorrow as well. This is implied as the Rose of Five Petals, Her heart-- if you will, is torn apart by the piercing of the three swords. This card suggests the Dark Sea of Binah, a Womb of chaos, where things are subject to deconstruction to be reconstructed.

When the Three of Swords-Sorrow is thrown during a reading:

  • The querent is experiencing thoughts of sorrow.
  • Reoccurring thoughts of sorrowful past events.
  • The sorrow of a triangular relationship that is out of balance.
  • Disappointment and heartbreak.
  •  A type of recognition where one must give up one thing to gain another.
  • Releasing: a gift of sorrow, allowing the querent to release and let out the pent-up stress of feared emotions.
  • Here difficulty precedes power.
  • Also, for initiates, who travel to the abyss, this sorrow is soul deep, for it is of the Sorrow of the Creatrix, who must destroy to rebuild, which will happen to the personality that succeeds in traversing the Abyss.
If ill defined:
  • Disruption.
  • Separation.
  • Estrangement.
  • Self-delusion. 

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