The Babylonian Tarot-King of Arrows-Ellil, not only uses the traditional tarot card of the King instead of the "Battle King" that Crowley calls Knights, but depicts the head of the younger generation of Mesopotamian gods, Ellil, son of Anu and Ki. Ellil, was a lord of storm and wind. His authority was second only to Anu, his father. His Sumerian name was Enlil, who latter became notorious for wanting to exterminate mankind. However, he was effectively the God of Sumer, after 2500 B.C. E.. He was said to have separated his parents- heaven and earth- with a pickax. Ellil was considered the Lord of mankind's fate as he ruled over disasters, prosperity, abundance and destiny. He had an abode in heaven but he preferred his abode in the Great Mountain of the East. Ellil, symbolized the forces of nature. He was considered "king of all Lands" and had many titles. Such as, "raging storm" , "wild bull", "father of the gods", "establisher of kingship" and the "king of heaven and earth".
Early on, he was portrayed as a benevolent creator god, the inventor of agriculture as he created the seeds, the plants, trees, pickax and plough. However, he was as the Hebrew Yahweh in his anger, as he was also attributed with the great flood that wiped out most of mankind. Therefore, the Babylonian Tarot portrays Ellil in the midst of storm clouds holding an arrow.
Meaning in divination:
- Violent, fiery energy that is extremely unstable and volatile.
- Agitated and swift energy that is unpredictable.
- A mature man or person of authority and power.
- One who can be obstinate, intelligent, rational and aggressive.
- Someone who believes strongly in justice and law.
- Someone who sits in judgment of others and looks out for his/her own interests.
- One who is cruel, sadistic, insensitive and unjust.
To reiterate: Chokmah is the beginning state of conscious energy that is masculine in action. Chokmah the 2nd Sephiroth called-Wisdom, is the "idea of male" and its mate, Binah (understanding), is the "idea of Female". Now we have the concepts of Father-Mother God and/or the Divine Creative.
Chokmah being the 2nd Sephira, called---Wisdom, is also the Force behind the four 2's and the 4 Knights.
The 2's symbolize the Forces of the 4 Kings, who are Knights, and the 4 Queens uniting and initializing the Forces. In Qabalistic Tarot, the Knight-Kings are the Fathers of and initiators of Material Forces.
The Knight of Swords, Is also known in Qaballah as Lord of Winds and Breezes. King of the Elemental Spirits of the Air, the Sylphs and Sylphides. This is a very Strong masculine mental archetypal force whose zodiacal attributes are the last Decan of Taurus and the first two Decans of Gemini. Here we have Specific Fire in Primal Air that is the personification of a Force behind the World of Astral Images and ideas. This Power is violent, aggressive, and a cutting edged force that is much like an overheated wind. He is storm and violent emotion applied to an apparently manageable mind.
The symbols of this Mad Movement, is depicted in the art of the Knight of Swords, as his maddened steed is charging down from the heavens, with Tempest about, and armed with both sword and poniard; he is the very personification of the idea of attack. The Bull like power of Taurus is represented in his steed and the Twins of Gemini are shown in his armament. The crest on his Helm is a revolving wing, showing violent motion in air, much like a helicopter beats the air into submission.
Such a character, if personal, would be that of a person who is:
- Clever, skillful, active and subtle. Being that he is fierce, delicate, and courageous, much like a Dragon Fly, does not keep him from being prey to his ideas which come as inspiration without consideration.
However we choose to dignify this Knight-King, he is the "Extended Flame of mind" as Zoroaster calls it. Here the True Will to Force, as Chokmah is exploding the Mind. The Taurian influence, makes it steadfast and the first Decanate of Gemini makes it inspirational, thus an Idea tends to absorb the entire life of the individual in the blinding light of concentrated aspiration. Therefore the Knight of Swords implies the danger to this state of mind, for the first Decan is also known as "shortened force" and that shortened force is symbolized by the poniard; shortened force often comes off as defensive and stubborn behavior.
WHEN THE KNIGHT OF SWORDS IS THROWN DURING A READING:
The querent is or may be experiencing:
- The Will to transcend.
- An analytical period, where the power of idea and motion come into play.
- Letting go of old beliefs and attitudes that no longer serve the motion of the individual.
- The querent is a person of tough- minded common sense which is usually based on preconception and prejudicial determinations.
- The arrogance of a powerful mind turn on itself in its own desire for control.
- Tends to judge harshly but with scrupulous fairness.
- A lawyer, senator or doctor.
- Mastery of creativity and confusion, as he sees new points of view, while brainstorming new thoughts that vent the mind.
- Intellectual, and mental prowess whose only emotion is to control.
- A strong personality of fiery emotion and powerful thought.
All of this changes when this card is ill dignified.
- If such occurs, he is incapable of decisions or purpose, and any action he takes is so weakened by his mental indecision that it is easily brushed aside by opposition.
- Often we find, that inadequate violent action is merely futile effort at best.
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