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History of the Sacred Tarot written by C.C. Zain.
by Linden Leisge April, 2010
In 1918 Zain started writing the 210 Brotherhood of Light lessons(serials). Serials
22-33 comprised the Sacred Tarot. The original lessons were nine page mimeographed
manuscripts, bound in blue covers and distributed to members of the Brotherhood of
One feature of the Brotherhood of Light Tarot system, which makes it unique in
comparison with other systems is its decanate correspondences to the minor arcana.
The system of correspondences was inspired by Paul Christians chapter on the gen-
eral theory of the horoscope found in his book The History and Practice of Magic.
The system was revised by Zain with the discovery of Pluto in the early 1930s.
In 1936 serial 48 Doctrine of Kabalism, was added to the Sacred Tarot. This
serial was based on Wynn Westcott's translation of sacred Jewish literature. For stu-
dents wishing more detailed information on the Kabbalah and the Tree of Life as
well as a comparison of the Waite Deck Major arcanum see attached writtings by
Prier Wintle.
The pictured Tarot Arcanum and court cards have change through time. For an
excellent history of the Tarot we reccomend Stuart Kaplans Encyclopedia of the
. The 1918 version used the pictures from the book Practical Astrology by St.
Germain. The St. Germane pictures were taken from the 1896 Falconnier deck. This
deck is found in the Encyclopedia of the Tarot by Stuart Kaplan. The Arcana court
cards pictured in the 1936 edition were revised by Zain and illustrated by Gloria
Beresford, a Church of Light member. All the other diagrams and illustrations in the
1936 edition are the same as were found in the original printing. The Falconnier deck
is linked to the Christian sources by the magical alphabet, which is the cursive form
of Egyptian writing. This form of writing is called Hieratic.

Please note that the drawings used in the Sacred Tarot on the Light of Egypt are
done by Kimberly Chun.
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Editors Comments. This review of the Zain Tarot is a must reading for the student of
this philosophy to grasp the full meanings of the cards in relationship to the Jewish/
Babalonian Mystical tradition. We place it here for comments and input from stu-
dents of this tradition.
Attributes of the Egyptian Tarot
by Prier Wintle
While not strictly an astrological subject per se, one of the more fascinating side-
applications of astrology is the attempt to solve the problems of discovering a key
which will unlock the full meaning of the symbolism of the still enigmatical Tarot
cards, by providing parallels in a symbolism with which we are familiar. The better
understood language as we seek something corresponding to the Rosetta Stone. This
will be a series of attributions of planets and signs to the cards which is clearly
appropriate, and at the same time logical and meaningful in itself.
One field in which it certainly needs to be introduced is that of the order of the
cards themselves. Ever since Court de Gebelin first focused enlightened occult at-
tention on the Tarot, in France shortly before the French revolution, there has been an
intuitive conviction that there is a correct sequence of the cards, and that this sheds
light on their deeper meanings and relationships one with another: in most published
Tarot books one particular order has been accepted as the customary or traditional
one, and the majority of card users accept that it has the authority of immemorial
antiquity behind it A.E. Waite, however, in Shadows of Life and Thought has claimed
that this order dates no earlier than 1830, and points out that when Court de Gebelin
published the cards in the 8th volume of his Encyclopedia,Le Monde Primitif no
numbers were assigned to them. Moreover, the 18th century cartomancer Etteila,
who used the sequence from the modern, well-known one. If the presently accepted
order is correct, therefore, its justification still requires to be conclusively demon-
strated. The correct sequence must be revealed when the correct correlation of the
Tarot with astrological symbolism is arrived at, because invariable sequence is an
inescapable characteristic of the latter.
The first systematic attempt to shed light on the cards with astrological help
was made by the French occultist Eliphas Levi. He assigned the 22 Trumps in the
order now accepted as traditional to the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet, in alpha-
betical order. This at once made an astrological comparison possible since a Rab-
binical tradition of attribution of the letters to planets and signs for Qabalistical rea-
sons had been in existence for centuries. The Hebrew alphabet consists of 12 simple
letters, 7 double letters (each with two sounds, one hard, the other soft or aspirated)
and 3 letters called Mother letters. This obviously invites astrological attribution,
and sure enough the 12 simple letters are assigned to the 12 signs, in the order in
which they appear in the alphabet, beginning with Aries and following through in
sequence to Pisces, the 7 Hole planets are assigned to the double letters, and 3 of the
4 elements (Air, Fire and Water) are assigned to the Mothers. (see footnote 1:1)
Unfortunately, the light shed upon the Tarot by Levi's direct paralleling of cards
and letters did not give much illumination. There is no space here to tabulate every
correspondence it produces, but some examples from the signs will give a general
idea. The Tarot card called the Moon is assigned to Aquarius, the Sun to Pisces, and
the High Priest or Hierophant is paired with Aries. Something is clearly wrong some-
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The next step was taken by the English occult group known as the Hermetic
Order of the Golden Dawn This group pointed out that the Tarot cards, in the order
now accepted as traditional, are not numbered from 1 to 22, but from 0 to 21. There
was, therefore, room for difference of opinion on where the card numbered 0 should
be placed. Levi had begun with card 1 making 1 to correspond with the first letter of
the Hebrew alphabet and continued in order as far as card 21, corresponding with the
20th letter. At that point; however, he inserted card 0 correspond with the 21st letter,
and made card 21 correspond with the 21st letter. The Golden Dawn decided this
was a bind (it does seem a rather strange procedure) and began instead with card 0,
counting through them in order to 21. On examination of the correspondences thus
produced, they further decided that cards 8 and 11 had been wrongly numbered in the
series and transposed them.
This produces a series which just begins to suggest that sense is somewhere in
sight. To take a few examples from the signs once again the card called Strength,
now numbered 8 (formerly 11), which shows a woman opening the jaws of a Lion, is
assigned to Leo; while Justice, now numbered 11 (formerly 8), which shows a woman
holding the scales, is assigned to Libra. Moreover, Death, the skeleton with the scythe,
is assigned to Scorpio. Although this arrangement has almost become accepted as
sacrosanct by modern followers of the Golden Dawn tradition, uncommitted critics
cannot help noticing many very doubtful parallels which still remain. The Moon, for
instance, is assigned to Pisces, a very unconvincing attribution, and the Chariot a
card with much solar symbolism in it, to Cancer, while the High Priest, or Hierophant,
is aligned with Taurus, with which he would appear to have very little to do.
There is also reason of another kind for feeling dissatisfied with the Golden
Dawn attributions. There is a lack of consistency in them to the conceptual pattern
on which they are supposed to be based. I have already mentioned the switching of
cards 8 and 11. That was a departure from the accepted order of the cards on the
bases of the system. No one would object to that if adherence to the other bases had
been all the more rigid but this was not the case. There was also a departure from the
rabbinical tradition. The traditional assignment of the 12 simple letters to the zodia-
cal signs was followed exactly, but when it came to the planets such very doubtful
correlations with the Tarot cards were produced that it was felt some change had to
be made. One would have thought that consistency would have dictated a further
modification to the accepted order of the cards, but; instead of that, it was decided to
abandon the rabbinical order of assignment of planets to letters. The justification
given was the same as that for departing from Levi's placement of the card 0: The
rabbinical list was stated to be a blind.
Now, it is true that blinds do occur in ancient occult MSS; however, there is
strong reason for thinking that in this case the Sepher Yetzirah (the rabbinical docu-
ment dating from the 2nd century AD. which is the source-book of this tradition) was
not making one. The order it gives for the planets is as follows: Sun, Venus Mercury,
Moon, Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, with a pair of opposite meanings assigned to each one
corresponding to the double letter with which each is paired.
These pairs of opposites are:
Sun: Life and Death
Venus: Peace and War
Mercury: Wisdom and Folly
Moon: Riches and Poverty
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Saturn: Grace and Indignation
Jupiter Fertility and Sterility
Mars: Power and Servitude
In changing the planetary order to agree better with the Tarot cards, the Golden
Dawn left these pairs of meanings assigned of the letters, but changed the planets
correlated with them. As a consequence the following arrangement resulted:
Mercury Life and Death
Moon: Peace and War
Venus: Wisdom and Folly
Jupiter. Riches and Poverty
Mars: Grace and indignation
Sun: Fertility and Sterility
Saturn: Power and Servitude
It will, I think be agreed that these meanings are less appropriate astrologically
to this order of the planets than they are to the original rabbinical order. Moreover--
and far more important-the Golden Dawn planetary order is meaningless in itself
whereas the rabbinical one is not. It is the old Chaldean order based on the relative
orbital periods of the planets, well known to astrologers as the planetary hour series,
from which, indirectly the order of the days of the week is derived. Nor is this the
only rabbinical document which used this order. The -Sepher Sephiroth, assigning
the planets to the well known occult diagram called the "The Tree of Life, uses it
beginning with Saturn, as follows: Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Sun, Venus, Mercury, Moon.
Strangely enough I have never found this order noticed or recognized for what it is in
any commentary on either the Tree of Life or the Tarot Cards, though it leaps to the
eye of any astrologer. I am afraid the fact has to be faced that many "authorities" in
the occult field-including some who made pronouncements which it is now almost
considered heresy to question-really lacked needful basic astrological qualifications.
Clearly a problem like this should have been tackled only by persons skilled in
astrology. Occult or Qabalistical knowledge was, of course, necessary as well, but
not enough by itself, for what was being attempted was professedly a correlation of
the little known with the well known. In the cases so far dealt with, however, those
trying to solve the conundrum were occultists hoping to use the Tarot as an adjunct to
Qabalistical studies whose knowledge of astrology was really only just sufficient to
mislead them into thinking that what they were trying to do was something easy. As
a result they perpetrated astrological howlers, both in their correlations and, as just
demonstrated by not recognizing an important planetary order, which they therefore
altered into something meaningless. The task of correlating the Tarot with astrologi-
cal symbolism is actually not easy. It cannot be accomplished by any quick obvious
paralleling of two given series, as in the attempts described. The more one studies
the Tarot, the more one realized that many cards all seem to bear symbolism which
points in one astrological direction, and that the whole pack is questionably interlinked
by some not by any means as yet fully understood system of relationships. One can-
not hope for a solution to the enigma save from a Qabalist who is also a really able
astrologer with deep understanding of the profound aspects of astrological symbol-
The nearest approach to this desideratum we have had so far is the work of
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Elbert Benjamine, published under the pseudonym, C.C. Zain, in his book, The Sa-
cred Tarot.
Benjamine was unquestionably a first rate astrologer, as students of his many
books will agree, and he also had the requisite intuitional attunement with the cards,
using the Egyptian form of the designs which he insisted, on the ground of several
different lines of occult tradition and authority to which he had access to be the
originals [see footnote 1:2) in addition he had an exceedingly wide general acquain-
tance with the whole occult field and with the basic Qabalistical tradition. One writer
of the Golden Dawn school has tried to cast doubt upon this, describing his Qabalism
as somewhat unorthodox to say the least" and then, after quoting some of his attribu-
tion& adding the single comment "most of which seem difficult to justify". [See
footnote 1:3] However, he makes not the least attempt to examine them in detail nor
to go into the grounds on which they were based. I hope to show that they were based
on quite sold ground Qabalistically, and also that, taken as a whole, they make far
more sense astrologically than the Golden Dawn series.
Benjamine rejected both the Levi and the Golden Down attributions in Toto,
together with the moderm, "improved' packs of cards and all designs save the Egyp-
tian ones. The others he felt reflected Christian or Mohammedan- influences upon
the underlying tradition--where they had not in fact been redrawn to suit some par-
ticular interpretation; however, he did not begin entirely from scratch. He accepted
the traditional order of the cards, as Levi did in assigning the cards to the Hebrew
letters beginning with card 1 for the first letter.
This would appear at first sight of course, to involve him in Levi's system of
astrological attributions based on the- rabbinical ones to the letters, but Benjamine
had seen beneath the surface. The Sepher Yetzirah assigns not only an astrological
sign or planet to each of the single and double letters, but also a direction. Examina-
tion of these makes it clear that a cube is being described whose 12 edges are the 12
zodiacal signs, while the 6 faces and center are the planets. I give his diagram exactly
as it is described in the Sepher Yetzirah in Wynn Westcott's translation (see footnote
1:4) of the Hebrew text published by Johannes Stephanus Rittangelius in 1642 at
Amsterdam, save for one correction made by Paul Foster Case. The latter edition of
his own work of the Tarot (see footnote 1:5), but later discovered that the correct
reading of the text places Scorpio on SW and Libra on NW and not vice versa as in
Westscott (see figure 1)
It will be seen that a planet is assigned to each face and one (Mars) to the center.
I have followed the rabbinical planetary order exactly as it is given in placing them,
and it interesting that when one does this, light is at once thrown on a well known
Qabalistical mantram connected with the archangels of the planets. The archangels
of Mercury, the Sun, Moon and Venus are respectively Raphael, Michael, Gabriel
and Auriel, and in the ritual of the Qabalistic Cross these are mentioned in the order
Raphael-Gabriel; Michael-Auriel. It is usual nowadays to say the ritual in the form:
"Before me Raphael, behind me Gabriel; on my right Michael, on my left Auriel"
This, however; makes the ritual all take place in one plane, whereas originally
it was obviously intended to be a cross formed by the intersection of the horizontal
plane by the vertical, and on the cube this is what it is. Mercury (Raphael is placed in
the east face and the Moon (Gabriel) in the west The Sun (Michael) is above and
Venus (Auriel below. The form of the second half of the ritual must; therefore, origi-
nally have been, "Above me Michael and below me Auriel (Not much doubt of this
can remain when one remembers that Auriel is also the archangel of the Earth.) The
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transition to saying the ritual as if it described a flattened cross in the horizontal
plane possibly occurred when Qabalists moved from low to high latitudes and the
Sun appeared to culminate in the South rather than above, but no hint of whether in
the cross or flat plane form, is given when the planets are placed on the cube in the
"amended" Golden Dawn order.
No directions are assigned to the Mother letters. It has been suggested- that
these correspond with the three diagonals joining the 6 faces, and this is possible; it
is entirely a moderm suggestion, however to the old Qabalists, the Mother letters
were distinctly something separate.
Benjamin's brilliant intuition was to use as basis for astrological correspon-
dences to the cards a figure known as the Grand Pentagram This he illustrates on
page 132 of the Sacred Tarot and I reproduce it here (see figure1:2)
It will be perceived that it is a figure which resembles a box or cube which has
been slit down the edges and then laid out flat, with the sides adhering only at the
corners. It is actually not, but it bears an indirect relationship to, the Qabalistic Cube
of Space and is from one point of view a symbolic astrological projection of it As-
will recognize a resemblance to the old square type of horoscope figure so dear
to the 19th century English astrology of the Raphael school-and this is indeed the key
to it. The signs appear in regular order round the figure on the outside coners of the 4
outer squares, beginning with Aries where one would expect to find the 1st house
cusp and ending with Pisces on the 12th house cusp. The planets occupy the spaces,
apart from 4 which are assigned to inside corners.
One must now take note of words which appear on page 7 of The Sacred Tarot
The author of these lessons is not...modest about his acquaintance with the unwritten
Kabala," Benjamin. writes, "he has received it fully and has also investigated the
written traditions of the Jews...And this seems the proper place to point out that the
unwritten Kabala, like the written Kabala, is set forth in symbolic language, with
purposed blinds and subterfuges to confuse The uninitiated. We must not, therefore,
expect the main key which unlocks the arcanum to have been delivered to us abso-
lutely explicitly. We ourselves have to work out how it fits-and the essential informa-
tion to enable us to do this has been given.
The horoscope, we know, bears a symbolic relationship to the four quarters of
the Earth and Heavens. Its four quadrants, each of three signs, being successively
those of the East, South, West and North are, therefore, set forth as squares in the
Grand Pentagram diagram. The cube, exactly similarly, is a symbolic picture of the
universe as perceived from a particular point in space (see footnote 1:6) and I have
already referred above to the relation of the planets placed in each face to the sym-
bology of the archangels of the different directions. The signs elaborate on the same
theme in a very illuminating way. Thus, the first two signs in the western part of the
horoscope, and of the Grand Pentagram, are Aries and Taurus, and these appear-as
vertical boundaries of the west face of the cube. The next two, Gemini and Cancer,
are in the next (The southern) quadrant of the horoscope and Pentagram-i.e., in a
different "dimension"; therefore, they are shown on the cube as the horizontal bound-
aries, above and below, which complete the first face. The next succeeding two signs,
Leo and Virgo; which lead from the southern to the western quadrant of horoscope
and pentagram (one being in each), are also shown as horizontal boundaries on the
cube, but as those of a different face (see footnote 7) as we now move round the
cube: Following them are Libra and Scorpio, the two main signs (cardinal and fixed)
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of the western quarter, and these therefore, appropriately bound the western face of
the cube as verticals and exact complements of Aries and Taurus on the eastern face.
Sagittarius and Capricorn then are the horizontal boundaries, above and below, of
this face, complements of Gemini and Cancer; as once again there is a southern
quadrant. Finally, Aquarius and Pisces mark the last shift round the cube and the
move from the southern back to the eastern quadrant of the horoscope and penta-
gram, completing the last face of the cube, as it were, in a manner calculated to
remind us constantly (since it is a symbol of the All) that the fundamentals of life are
three dimensional, and not two dimensional.
Now the Grand Pentagram, thus shown to be a valid symbolical relative of the
cube, leads to a correlation with the Tarot cards, when these are placed upon it com-
mencing at the western side (corresponding to the near face of the cube), which is of
the greatest interest and which has none of the forced qualities of the Levi and Golden
Dawn series. First, however, one must note the way the planets are assigned. This is
as follows: Commencing with the right-hand square, one planet (Mercury) is as-
signed to the corner of it where it touches the central square. This is the start of the
whole series. It is followed by the signs Virgo, Libra and Scorpio round the outer
corners and then the planet Jupiter is assigned to the center of the square. The proce-
dure is, the same round each of the other outside squares: first of all, a planet as-
signed to the inside corner and then three signs to the outside ones, and finally an-
other planet is the center. At the end of the entire series the Sun and Pluto are as-
signed to the center of the inside square. The Tarot cards are now assigned to the
figure in the same sequence, beginning with the Magician or Juggler assigned to
Mercury and continuing through in their traditionally accepted order. It will be ob-
served that the three outer planets, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto, appear on the figure.
These take the place of the three elements, Air, Water and Fire, of the rabbinical
tradition, as I have mentioned in a footnote above. The full justification of the substi-
tution will appear when the corresponding Tarot cards are discussed in the course of
the exposition of all the cards, in the sequence corresponding to the Grand Penta-
gram schema, which I propose to embark on now.
Having now demonstrated the Qabalistic basis of his system and shown that
Benjamine's assignments were no mere caprice on his part, I propose to examine
each astrological correspondence produced with brief comment. I think this will be
the first time this has been attempted by an outside commentator, and it will be a
justice long over do to Benjamine. Many commentaries and meditations on the inner
meanings of the Golden Dawn and Levi attributions exist, but the Benjamine ones,
being supposed to be arbitrary, have been neglected. How much has been lost through
this mistaken belief may now appear.
This is a highly appropriate attribution since, in Tarot, the Magician clearly symbol-
izes the conscious mind and conscious focusing of attention.
The Golden Dawn attribution, using the amended (non-rabbinical) order of the
Planets, is also to Mercury.
Card I The Magician
Attribution: Mercury
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This is also highly appropriate. The figure of Isis as depicted in Egyptian mythology
passed in Christian times, without the slightest modification, into acceptance as the
standard mode of portrayal of the Virgin Mary.
Certain titles describing different types of mental approach or intelligence given
to the Hebrew letters by the ancient rabbis are illuminating in connection with the
Tarot attributions. They, together with the indications of position on a cube which
indirectly correlates with his own system attributions were undoubtedly Benjamine's
reasons for retaining the assignment of cards to letters, even though he rejected the
prima fascia astrological attributions which seemed to go with them. In this case the
title is "Intelligence of Transparency". In an unsuitable sense this might be taken as
a reference to the semi-transparent veil worn by Isis. In a deeper sense it points
unmistakably to the Virgin as the one through whom God passes into the world.
The Golden Dawn attribution is to the Moon, and the Moon is certainly also
associated with both Isis and the Virgin. There is no other card with which the sign
Virgo can be placed as appropriately as with this one, however, the Moon herself and
the other her archangel, with which the Moon can convincingly be associated. As
will be seen later the Benjamine series leads to a direct pairing with appropriate
lunar symbolism in both these cases; the traditionally hallowed association of Isis
with the Virgin, therefore, may confidently be taken to be more correct in this case.
Thus, we have the first card paired with Mercury as the positive, self-conscious
aspect of the mind, and the second complementarily with Mercury's negative sign,
symbolizing experience, classifying and storing everything in the great computer of
Memory. Indeed, sub-consciousness is far more efficient than any computer that has
ever been designed, for she runs every minute detail of the automatic workings of
our bodily organisms, breathing, temperature maintenance, heartbeat, digestion and
assimilation, and countless other functions; but being a woman, she is, like a woman,
and must be treated as one. No one who attempts to bully and browbeat his body will
get the best response from it, whereas a confident suggestion that one, trusts it to
look after its own business, together with considerate respect for its rhythm-her
rhythms-produces perfect co-operation.
Footnotes, Part One
1) One might be excused for wondering why the three modes, Cardinal, Fixed
and Mutable; were not chosen instead of only three of the elements. The three cho-
sen, however, correspond to root potencies which ultimately find their field of mani-
festation in the fourth, Earth, and they have, moreover, been found more recently to
correlate remarkably with the three "new" planets, Uranus, Pluto and Neptune, sup-
posed exoterically to have been unknown to the ancients.
2) By some, these are attributed to the Comte de Saint Germaine; and it is
undeniable that a version of the Egyptian designs is associated with the latter, but it
would seem probable that he did not originate these himself. More likely he, too,
recognized in them the authentic tradition and in consequence, gave the sanction of
his name to them.
3) See Gareth Knight, "A Practical Guide to Qabalistic Symbolism", (Helios,
1965), Vol. II, page 229.
4) (Theosophical Publishing Society, 1893) There are a number of different
Card II: Isis or The High Priestess
Attribution: Virgo
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translations of the Sephir Yetzirah extant, based on different ancient manuscript, and
these offer variant readings in certain important sections. The Westcott version is
usually held to be the best as it was produced by a scholar who was also an occultist
and who, Therefore, appreciated the deeper significances in what he was translating.
Benjamine does not explicitly identify the version he used, but on pages 13-14 of
The Sacred Tarot, he specifies the number of sections in each chapter, viz. Chapter 1-
12 sections, Chapters II and III--each 5 sections, Chapter IV-4 sections, Chapter
V--3 sections and Chapter VI-4 sections. This makes it unequivocal that it was
Westcott's, for no other divides up the chapters in quite this way. It is perfectly cer-
tain, however, that he would not have used it without checking with the original
manuscript source, and I am confident, therefore, that he too was aware of the error
discovered by Case.
5) "The Tarot", by P F Case(New York, 1947), Macoy Publishing Co.
6) It is well to remember that although the only accurate projection of the world
around us must really be circular or spherical (for this reason modern horoscopes are
always drawn as circles), still the prime directions are all at right angles to one an-
other and appear to be perceived by us as straight lines. Therefore, it is also true to
say that, in a sense, we also experience the universe in rectilinear mode, and the
tendency of the conscious mind is, in fact always to impose linear coordinates upon
the fluid curve of visual sensory perception. These, when joined by other straight
lines, produce the square or cube figure and this is not really a distortion of actuality,
but an accurate diagram of an interior reality, i.e., the mind's own logical interpreta-
tion of experience. So long as one realizes what one is doing, it is a perfectly admis-
sible figure to use, one which permits of ready symbolic compartmentalizing of ideas
and perceptions, and it was for this reason that the square type of horoscope figure
was preferred by all the old astrologers, from medieval times up to the end of the
19th century.
7) This is the northern face of the cube, whereas the quadrant of the horoscope
is the southern one, but this "discrepancy" is not real but solely the result of the
different symbolic approach (3 dimensional on the cube) to picturing the one reality.
The actual direction of motion which is pictured round both figures, cube and penta-
gram, is exactly the same, i.e., anti-clockwise, but since the cube is three dimen-
sional, it must picture the greater movement of the Heavens, that of precession, which
turns from east to north Instead of south. The comparatively two dimensional human
affairs pictured by the two dimensional horoscope are concerned only with the Earth's
orbital motion, turning from east to south.
The appropriateness of this attribution is strongly brought out by the rabbinical title,
"the Uniting Intelligence". To bring together, form relationships, and unite is the
special characteristic of the sign Libra. As the Empress, Isis is here manifesting in
her role as queen or ruler, and it is well known that female rulership is always at its
best when exercised in the Libran way, with tact and charm and instinctive avoid-
ance of too much bluntness and directness. The Golden Dawn attribution is to Venus,
which is also appropriate to the rabbinical title. One may question, however whether
the Empress does not portray a woman more mature and responsible than the young
Part Two
Card III: The Empress or Isis Unveiled
Attribution: Libra
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Queen of Love. An Empress is one who can hold the scales or balances, i.e., domin-
ion and competent to administer justice. Libra suggests all of this, Venus none of it
The title, "the Uniting Intelligence", also hints at the character of Libra as the sign
which binds the northern or summer signs of the zodiac to the southern or winter
ones at the autumnal equinox, reuniting them, as it were, as the complement to the
sword of Aries which divided them at the start of a new year, six months before.
As Benjamin points out, the first four Tarot arcane bear a symbolic relation to
the letters of Tetragrammaton, J H V H, or YOD (or JOD) HEH VAU HEH the Name
of God usually corresponds to the letter Jod which means "a hand and which is
written as a tiny flame-like character poised well above the line down to which all
the other letters are brought. It is depicted in the design of the card itself in the
Magician's upraised hand holding a wand Veiled Isis, or the High Priestess, then
corresponds to Heh, a window or opening through which one can see. She sits in just
such an opening--not the door (Daleth) of the Temple, but the porch or loggia before
it--through which, once the veil is parted, one can see the true door. The Empress, or
Isis Unveiled, corresponds to Vau, a nail or link, i.e., something which joins or unites.
She pictures, in fact the marital state; and is the High Priestess after her union with
the Magician, the negative united with the positive, the "woman clothed with the
Sun" of Revelation 12:1 (see footnote 2:1) Card IV, the Emperor, corresponds to the
final Heh, the appropriateness of which is set forth in the next section.
The Golden Dawn attribution is to Aries, which is not a bad attribution for the mate
of the Empress and would have been even better had the Golden Dawn attributed
Libra to her instead of Venus; however, when one comes to consider the symbolism
of the card, in a more overall sense there are the serious drawbacks to a correlation of
Aries with it. The sign is too headstrong and lacking in mature sense of responsibility
to befit an emperor. More fixity is needed, and Scorpio is also better because the
figure depicted here stands not only for rulership, but also for the embodiment of
male sex potency. The rabbinical title is "the Luminous Intelligence" and the reasons
given for this, though obscure, also seem to have a flavor of Scorpio about them.
They are: because it is that brightness which is the founder of the concealed and
fundamental ideas of holiness; and of their stages of preparation. The Word "Lumi-
nous", moreover, immediately brings to mind the correspondence of Card IV with
the final Heh (window) of J H V H. For the Emperor is both the sex power (Scorpio)
and also the sovereign power of Reason, which sees (understands). The alchemistical
sublimation of the sex power, in addition, eventually leads to complete illumination
of the mind
This is an excellent attribution--far better than the Golden Dawn one to Taurus, a
fixed earth sigh, which is almost impossible to justify convincingly. Jupiter has al-
ways been associated in astrology with priests and hierarchies.
The rabbinical title is `the Constituting Intelligence" so called because It con-
Card IV: The Emperor or Sovereign
Attribution: Scorpio
Card V: The High Priest or Heirophant
Attribution: Jupiter
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stitutes the substance of creation in pure darkness, and many have spoken of the
contemplations--a description which is illuminated more by meditation than by com-
ment upon it. The meaning of Jupiter as expansion should be kept in mind, for;
essentially, this card deals with the processes of expansion of consciousness.
Another excellent attribution,far better than the Golden Dawn one to Gemini despite
the alternative title for the card. A far better location for Venus,the Queen of Love,than
the Empress, which is the Golden Dawn's choice as we have seen. This is not the
purely mental duality or diffuseness of Gemini. The design shows woman in two
guises, virtuous and uplifting; and sensual and degrading, both appealing for the love
of a man.
The rabbinical title, "the Triumphant and Eternal Intelligence", is astonishingly
apposite, both in its suggestion of the eternal power of attraction which woman ex-
erts over man, and because it should be remembered that Venus, as Ishtar, was the
ancient Chaldean Goddess of Victory. The reasons given are: "because it is the plea-
sure of the Glory, beyond which is no other Glory like to it, and it, is called also the
Paradise prepared for the righteous". The use of the word "pleasure" makes the Ve-
nus attribution unarguable.
Medieval designs for this card are full of unmistakable solar symbolism. The cart is
drawn by two horses, one black and one white (always prominent in solar mythol-
ogy), and the wheels of the vehicle are set curiously aslant, suggesting that, as the
horses pull it, it is being caused to swing in an orbit rather than be drawn directly
forward. The Egyptian design leaves out the slanted wheel symbolism and the cart is
drawn by two sphinxes instead of horses; a starry canopy over the driver's head and
a winged solar disc on the front of the vehicle still convey the same meaning, how-
ever. To appreciate the appropriateness of the attribution of Sagittarius to this card,
one has to understand the deeper meaning of the centaur symbol. It is not merely a
portrayal of the animal in man: it is an intimation that man's physical vehicle (the
upper part of the centaur body, and the chariot in the Tarot card) is both supported
and propelled by solar energy. If one looks at the position of Sagittarius on the cube,
moreover, one sees that it is one of the edges bordering the top face, attributed to the
Sun, and that Leo is just to the left of it. Sagittarius is the sign which gives wings to
the energy of the Sun, or transforms it into the power of the arrow, and in this connec-
tion it is interesting that it has proved to be the sign most prominent in the charts of
astronauts, whose rockets must always follow orbital paths to their destinations.
The Golden Dawn attribution of the card is to Cancer, which seems to have
little to recommend it. It has been justified on the ground that the Chariot a vehicle
and this symbolizes the human body or physical vehicle which is an outer shell for
the spirit, but while this is ingenious, it leaves out of account the traditional associa-
tion of the Chariot with Osiris (a solar figure) and the general impression of vibrant
Card VI: The Lovers or The Two Paths
Attribution: Venus
Card VII: The Chariot or The Conqueror
(sometimes called the Chariot of Osirus)
Attribution: Sagittarius
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power and movement given by the card much more than of embodiment. In the
Benjamine series the sign Cancer falls in association with the card called the Moon,
and this card carries connotation of restriction, darkness and difficulties. This surely
reflects much more appositely the intuitive sense that the body is the limiting shroud
of the spirit.
The rabbinical title is "the Disposing Intelligence". The reason given that it
"provides Faith to the righteous, and they are clothed with the Holy Spirit by it",
which may be a reference to the more religious 9th house connotations of Sagit-
tarius; the Chariot however, being of the first septenary of the Tarot trumps, tends to
portray more of the exoteric than the esoteric and religious aspects. (In a general
sense, the first seven cards portray the physical plane, the second seven the astral,
and the third the spiritual)
We must not forget that the entire spiritual work of the Qabalah has also been
called by qabalists the work "of the Chariot". Man is not to limit and enclose the
spirit (Cancer), but is to develop the ability to be a free and glorious vehicle for it on
all planes.
This is one case where Benjamin's attribution seems at first sight to be less appropri-
ate than that of the Golden Dawn, which is to Libra, the Scales. However, it must
also be admitted that in the actual administration and enforcement of justice Capri-
corn figures at least as much, if not more prominently than Libra, and it is this point
which the Egyptian design seems to be bringing out. The figure of Justice carries a
sickle shaped sword as well as the scales, and she sits on a raised dais with a lion at
her side and a solar canopy over her head, reminding one that Capricorn is the natu-
ral sign of the meridian where the Sun reaches its point of culmination. A connection
with the scales also exists by reason of the fact that Saturn, whose house this is, is
exalted in Libra, Though Libra itself is rather the house of marriage than of Justice
per se; thus, in this series, it appears in association with the Empress, as the consort
of the Emperor. She may, or course, be the real power behind the throne, as Libran
women so often are. The true faculty for seeing both side of a question, is a must for
judging and making adjustments accordingly, is also Libran, for it is of the essence of
that which harmonizes. Thus it is that which makes a true marriage work, as well as
every other relationship or association from the most ephemeral group up to a king-
dom or an empire.
Still, the external workings of Justice, meting out rewards and punishments, are
Capricornian, and Capricorn is also known for ability to mediate between sides in an
entirely practical way, as King Solomon does. It is the sigh which appears by far the
most frequently in the horoscopes of the popes for this very reason, the Papacy being
primarily a pragmatic body mediating between conflicting movements-and interests
within the Church.
The rabbinical title is "Intelligence of the House of Influence" --"by the great-
ness of whose abundance the influx of good things upon created beings is Increased"
--a clear reference to the blessings which flow to men and nations from just, impar-
tial and immovable Capricornian administration.
Card VIII: Justice or The Balance
Attribution: Capricorn
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To understand the point of this assignment it is necessary to realize that the figure
depicted is not a hermit in the popular sense of that term, i.e., a lonely anchorite, but
one who has "attained" on the occult path: a "Hermetic". In the medieval Tarot packs
it is true that misunderstanding of this fact has led the design to be modified into
something resembling the conventional hermit figure, but in the Egyptian pack the
true meaning cannot be missed. The man shown is mature, but not old, and instead of
being swathed in the conventional cloak and cowl, he is in the act of divesting him-
self of a square grey cloak, representing material limitations (see footnote 2:2)
The first essential before there can be any advance on the occult path is the
achievement of detachment, and this of course is the Aquarian trait par excellence;
the hermetic does not retire from the world, however. On the contrary, he lives in it
and may be approached by all, as was the Comte de Saint Germaine, the very type of
the Tarot Hermit, or Sage. This too is Aquarian.
The Golden Dawn attribution is to Virgo, which makes very much less sense,
Virgo being above all the sign of the feminine, i.e., of woman and her mysteries and
potential fruitfulness (the ear of corn); therefore, Benjamin's attribution of the High
Priestess to this sign, or contrast, it is indeed, an inevitable falling into place in a
correct astrological sequence). The only justification that could be advanced for the
Virgo correlation is the fact that the sign does have a connection with knowledge and
science, and it might, therefore, be argued that there in their ideal perfected form are
the hermetic arcanum; the scientific knowledge with which Virgo is associated, how-
ever, is the precise analysis and classification of the things (fruits) of this world, and
this is but "the Gate of the Sanctuary" (another name for the Arcanum, the High
Priestess or Veiled Isis). The true Hermetic Arcanum is a spirituo-intellectual per-
ception, achieved after all classifications have been completed, worked with and
meditated upon, and of true place and function of each specific thing in a total spiri-
tual-material creation. This is Aquarius.
The rabbinical title is Intelligence of the Secret of All Spiritual Activities",
which speaks for itself.
With this card we reach the first of the attributions to the "new" planets. Uranus takes
the place of the element Air in the old rabbinical scheme, which was assigned to the
first of the Mother letters, Aleph. Benjamine assigns Mercury to Aleph, and Mercury
representing lower mind, is thereby also closely associated with the element Air,
which astrologically stands for mind in the general sense, it is of interest, therefore,
that Uranus is generally considered to be the "higher octave" of Mercury. Standing
here for "the Air of the Wise", its attribution to the Wheel of fortune is most interest-
ing. Meanings which have been given to the Wheel are endless, or course. It is the
Wheel of Samsara, of Karma, of rebirth, etc. Underlying all these ideas, however, is
another more fundamental one: that of the cyclic nature of the machinery which
keeps this manifested universe in being--and it is this which explains why Uranus is
rightly attributed here.
What the nature of the essence of the ultimate source of our universe is, we can
Card IX: The Hermit or TheSage
Attribution: Aquarius
Card X: The Wheel of Fortune
Attribution: Uranus
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never know. It is incomprehensible by us. Whenever it presents itself to us in a com-
prehensive form, however, it is as ultimate mind. This was why the ancient rabbis
assigned that first mother letter to air. And we now in our quest for understanding of
the nature of mind and of the laws which govern the universe, make use of the Ura-
nian faculties at the very limits of human mentation --"mind at the end of its tether",
in fact.
It was the discovery of Uranus by Herschel which led humanity to a correct
apprehension of the nature and size of the solar system, while studies of perturba-
tions in the orbit (wheel) of this planet led Adams and Leverrier to the discovery of
Neptune, and Later on Lowell, Pickering and Tombaugh to that of Pluto.
The Golden Dawn attribution is to Jupiter, a planet without known associations
with rotation in any form, actual or symbolical, and associated astrologically only
with booms, expansion and growth generally, never with ups and downs. Uranus, on
the other hand, has always been notorious as the planet of revolution --the turning of
that wheel on which the destinies both of nations and of individuals are spun. It
brings down the rich and highly placed and exalts the obscure and lowly. And though
the apostles of gradualism try desperately to forestall its sickening lurch by reform
and planned progress (Jupiter), no prediction is more sure that revolutions, like earth-
quakes, will continue to occur--unpredictably (Uranus).
The rabbinical title is "Intelligence of Will", a most appropriate title to be cor-
related with Uranus since it is by means of intense, dominating will that the Uranian
always pursues his objectives, with complete disregard of all accepted authority or
This is the second attribution to a "new" planet and Neptune, in this case, stands in
place of the element Water, which was assigned by the rabbis to the second Hebrew
Mother letter, Mem. Benjamine assigns Aries to Mem, which might seem on the face
of it to be a rather startling reversal of the symbolism; but I shall have to postpone
discussion of the justification for this till a little later on.
The card we are dealing with here shows a young girl robed in white, calmly
opening the jaws of a red lion. It was one of the cards transposed out of the traditional
order by the Golden Dawn, who wished to make it correspond with Leo; Benjamine,
however, assigning Neptune to it as representative of the Water of the Wise, says the
girl is demonstrating mystical self-control over her own animal nature through com-
plete sublimation or reversal of all unregenerate motives and attainment of complete
purity. This has led to Nature recognizing her with the ability to rule the animal
kingdom, typified by the lion as the king of beasts.
Neptunian's do, occasionally, have this apparently uncanny power over ani-
mals as the result of a natural ability to form a link with them upon subconscious
levels--the realm of the element water.
The rabbinical title is "the Rewarding Intelligence," the reason given for it be-
ing that it "is so called because it received the divine influence which flows into it
from its benediction upon all and each existence." This clarity refers to water and to
Neptune. In the medieval packs, the girl wears a lemniscate hat or has an infinity
symbol over her head; in the Egyptian pack, however, she wears a headdress consist-
ing of a dove and a small pitcher of water.
Card XI: Strength or The Enchantress
Attribution: Neptune
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This is a clearly appropriate attribution to the sign of self-undoing and self-sacrifice.
The rabbinical title is "the Faithful Intelligence, "and the reason given for this, makes
a clear reference to the cross upon which all spirit hangs while in incarnation on the
physical plane. It runs: "and it is so called because by it spiritual virtues are in-
creased, and all dwellers on earth are nearly under its shadow."
The Golden Dawn attribution is to Water, and it is pointed out that Water was
the first mirror. The Hanged Man hangs head downwards like a reversed minor im-
age, symbolizing the inverted condition of spirit while it is incarnated in matter. This
is also appropriate, of course. The sacrificial motif which is so strong an element in
the design is better caught by the Pisces attribution, however.
The Golden Dawn attribution is to Scorpio, which has an obvious superficial appro-
priateness. This group's attribution of Aries is to the Emperor, so the two series
transpose in these two cards. Benjamine justifies his assignment here by pointing out
first of all that every death is really a birth or beginning of a new cycle. The scythe or
sickle (cycle) carried by Death is really a reminder of this from the first moment of
life we begin to die, and are always in death while in physical existence until we
awaken to spirit.
There are deeper reasons for the assignment, however, as follows: Aries and
Libra are the two crosses in the Zodiac. In them the Sun crosses the equator, moving
from south to north declination in Aries and from north to south in Libra. Libra
corresponds to the Empress in this series, and the movement from north to south
declination symbolizes a coming in to manifestation via, physical birth or genera-
tion. (the Empress is the consort of the Emperor, Symbol of masculine sex potency,
and is herself depicted as pregnant) Aries, representing motion in the opposite direc-
tion, therefore, symbolizes the process of spirit regaining its freedom in the normal
and ordinary course of events via death, but ultimately and ideally via regeneration
and transformation. Its emblem is an uplifted sword, an inversion of the Calvary
cross of suffering on the material plane and symbol of the transforming Mars force
consciously directed.
The association of the letter Mem, to which the card is assigned, with Water
now needs to be clarified, Aries is a fire sign--the cardinal fire sign. The Hebrew
letter--name, Mem, has the signification "waters, seas." Fire and Water are com-
bined here, then, and the blending of these two is the innermost secret of the
alchemistical process of Transmutation. The first step on the road to discovering the
secret is made by learning how to act upon the universal solvent, the Water of the
Wise, Astral Matter complete "realization" of the matter (i.e., intellectually and in
the sense of outer achievement) is accomplished when a Spiritual (Fire) body has
been built and one can cooperate in full consciousness on all planes, expressing the
Spirit (Fire) right down into the material world through the medium of the Water.
The rabbinical title is "the Stable intelligence," reference to this blending which
"fixes" both elements. (It is worth adding that, quite apart from this deeper meaning,
in the ordinary course of events death ushers each one of us, evolved or unevolved,
Card XII: The Hanged Man or The Martyr
Attribution: Pisces
Card XIII: Death or The Reaper
Attribution: Aries
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out of this material plane into the plane of astral matter, Water.).
Footnotes for part two
1) The full text of Revelation 12:1-2 is an exact description of Card III: "a
woman clothed with the sun and the moon beneath her feet, and upon her head a
crown of twelve stars. And she being with child...."
2) I am here describing the design in the Comte de Saint Germaine Egyptian
pack, which Benjamine was also clearly referring to in his description of the card in
"The Sacred Tarot," pages 207-208. The illustration given on page 194, however,
while clearly not of a medieval hermit, is of another version of the authentic tradition
showing the Sage wrapped in his material plane mantle, but preceded by the two
serpents of wisdom.
The design shows a Solar angel pouring water from a golden vase held in his left
hand into a silver one held in his right. The meaning is alchemistical and is a further
development of the theme of the blending of opposites or complementaries.
The attribution to Taurus points to the need to make the physical body a true
vehicle for the expression of spirit (Gold) -- i.e., one conventionalized cows horn,
the earliest form of drinking vessel, and it stands here for that into which the Divine
influx is poured.
The Golden Dawn attribution is to Sagittarius. This is justified by claiming that
the old meaning of the title, Temperance, was tempering in the sense in which one
tempers metals, and by pointing to the Sagittarian's proverbial exploring, foraging
and testing propensities. There is, no doubt, some truth in the claim in connection
with the title, but the design of the card itself really does not suggest Sagittarius.
There is nothing of either the Archer or the Centaur in it. It suggests far more the
process by which the Spirit is poured from a higher vessel into a lower, and Taurus,
as the astrological symbol par excellence of the physical body, clearly stands here for
that vessel which must be tempered by being filled with the spirit
The Rabbinical title is "the Transforming Intelligence," a clear reference to the
process which has just been outlined, as the reason given for it makes clear "And it is
so called because it gives a likeness to all the similitude's which are created in like
manner similar to its harmonious elegancies."
This assignment will appeal to many astrologers of the old Saturn-fearing school. Its
wider justification rests on an interpretation of the design as the devil-of-false-ap-
pearances and the limitations imposed by the physical world, which have to be seen
through and transcended. While he deludes, he possesses great and terrible negative
power, but the bonds he seems to impose vanish when they are rightly apprehended,
and his true function in the Divine scheme of things as the tester then appears. The
Rabbinical title, "Intelligence of Probation," is in full confirmation of this as the
Part Three
Card XIV: Temperance or The Alchemist
Attribution: Taurus
Card XV: The Devil or The Black magician
Attribution: Saturn
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explanation shows: "it is so called because it is the primary temptation, by which the
Creator trieth all righteous persons."
The Golden Dawn attribution is to Capricorn, which also introduces Saturn by
sign rulership. Clearly, however, the direct attribution is preferable: Capricorn in
itself is not a testing sign, but rather a formal and regulative one. Its ambition is
always for slow-but-sure advance and progress. The perverted type occasionally
manifests "capri-consciousness" --crude sexuality and a hard unfeeling attitude to-
wards others --but this is not the crushing, inexorable weight and malevolence one
associates with an adverse Saturn influence, and it is this latter which is so well
portrayed by the Devil.
The Golden Dawn attribution is also to Mars. Medieval designs show a tall
tower struck by lightening, the top, in the form of a crown, being knocked to
one side by the bolt. Two figures, one crowned, the other bare-headed, supposed to
represent pride and false knowledge, fall from the building. In The Egyptian Tarot
the topmost point of a pyramid is struck off by the lightning and the two figures fall
from a platform of 7 steps in front of it Explanations of the picture have varied from
the suggestion that it represents the Tower of Babel to more subtle psychological
exoteric elucidations. For instance, the platform in the Egyptian design is said to
represent seven orders in creation with man placed above them all, while the apex of
the pyramid is supposed to picture the concentrated point of his questing, objective
mind which, nevertheless, always has its base four-squarely and uncompromisingly
planted on the material plane.
Had Benjamin's attributions been purely arbitrary, as is supposed, it would have
been logical to expect him to assign Uranus here as the planet of lightning, since he
was making use of the "new" planets; however, he did not, and the assignment to
Mars is no accident The explanation for it is a completely Hermetic one.
It will be remembered that on The cube, Mars does not occupy a face, but is
placed in the center. It represents that force which is central to the manifestation of
the universe. Everything that exists is raised by it, whether it be a building of brick or
stone, a structure of human pride or mental prowess, or the manifestation of male
sexual potency. It is the natural power implanted by the Creator in the whole of
Creation, which enables it to become aware and to be active.
Everything which raises itself from the surface of the Earth becomes a focusing
point for the electrical energy in the atmosphere--in Hermetic parlance, for the en-
ergy of that sphere of "Air" encircling the Earth to which the Wheel of Fortune and
Uranus are assigned. This gradually induces a charge of opposite-but-equal potential
to its own in it Eventually, when the structure is high enough and the electrical poten-
tial sufficiently strong, There is a spark it is this very spark that Hermeticism aims to
attract into the structure of human personality as the flash of illumination, after due
preparation and with the proper precautions, by deliberate concentration of the Mars
force --but when the spark comes, and there is no proper conduction of it into the
earth because the personality has become insulated in some way, e.g., through pride,
selfishness, etc., then the results are destructive and the whole false structure is cast
down. This is the situation depicted here.
Through the Tarot portrays this warning to the unwary and presumptuous, the
Card XVI: The Blasted Tower or The Lightening
Attribution: Mars
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force involved is real and basically constructive. It is the creative force which eter-
nally renews itself in every new life wherever propagated. It is possible for man to
harness it and to attain-illumination safely, but his sense of unity with others and
dedication to serve them must first be perfected into second nature. The first nature
of man is egocentric, as this card subtly suggests by its single tower or pyramid --
and that will not do.
The Rabbinical title is "the Renewing intelligence" --because the Holy God
renews by it all the changing things which are renewed by the creation of the world."
Here, the design shows a young girl, completely nude, with long fair hair, kneeling
and pouring water from two pitchers, one upon the land, the other upon the sea.
Above her, seven small stars are clustered round a large central star of 8 points,
inside which, in the Egyptian version, is a diamond figure, white at the top, black
below, reminding one of the hermetic adage: "As above, so below, but after another
manner." To her left in the medieval versions, there is a tree with a bird upon it. In the
Egyptian pack, it is a flower with three blossoms, over which hovers a butterfly.
The Golden Dawn attribution is to Aquarius, and the appropriateness of the
water pouring from the pitchers is naturally pointed out. It is necessary to understand
a little of the Hermetic meaning of the card, once again, to perceive the greater
appropriateness of the attribution to Gemini.
Firstly, its position on the cube should be noted. It is at the top of the Eastern
face, between the Sun and Mercury, and the design pictures the scene as an observer
situated at that point might see it The Sun is above (really in this case, it is the
Interior Sun) and the girl is, of course, Venus, naked as she is always portrayed ("be-
low" on the cube). Now, Mercury represents the principle of consciousness, which in
Hermetic practice is to be combined with the Life Force (the Sun) and to direct it.
Situated between the Sun and Mercury, therefore, this card represents the process
whereby the mind becomes illuminated by the Life Force. This process is actually
meditation, which, as properly practiced, is a definite scientific technique for open-
ing the mind to receive ideas which are not accessible to ordinary mentation.
In Astrology, of course, Gemini is the chief "house" of Mercury and represents
the most objective manifestation of mind. Superficiality is also one of its character-
istics. It is the sign of the butterfly mind, and the butterfly here shown is a reference
to this. Nevertheless, we must remember that the Gemini symbol is two uprights
with lintel and pediment. These are the two pillars at the entrance to the Temple.
Those who pass them into the Temple of Hermeticism aim to still the butterfly of the
mind and to allow the rays from the great Interior Sun to develop and bring to full
activity all the 7 interior stars, or chakras, corresponding to the 7 planets, or stars
shown on the card. The duality of Gemini is also referred to, indirectly in the two
pitchers. The prime intellectual function that the sign stands for is the division of
things into pairs which can then be distinguished, compared, interrelated, and so on.
This is the beginning of knowledge, symbolized by the separation of the land from
the sea, the "solid ground" from the chaos. And, to comprehend distinctions, the
stream of consciousness is shown divided into two in these two urns, from which it
pours equally upon both the two contrasted terms till the flow gradually unites again
in the Great Ocean, Understanding.
Card XVII: The Star
Attribution: Gemini
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The Rabbinical title is "The Active or Exciting Intelligence" --"and it is so
called because through it every existent being receives its spirit and Motion."
This is a highly felicitous attribution which needs no analysis of the Hermetic mean-
ing of the card to make it clear. One might have thought it could not be missed, since
the design, which is of the Moon shining on a gloomy landscape, even shows a
crustacean climbing out of a pool in the foreground. The meaning is usually associ-
ated with sensationalism and morbid emotionality --Cancer characteristics. Yet, the
Golden Dawn attribution is to Pisces, which misses all the lunar symbolism and does
not have the same connotation of morbidity.
The Rabbinical title is "The Natural Intelligence." The explanation given is
that "by it is completed and perfected the nature of all that exists beneath the Sun," a
reference to the function of the moon as ruler of the body of all that reflects the Sun's
This equally felicitous attribution also needs no Hermetic analysis to make it clear.
The medieval designs show two children playing in a fairy-ring shaped like a solar
symbol, with the bright Sun overhead. The Egyptian Tarot shows two lovers trysting
in a similar ring. Both representations are as clear portrayals of the 5th house asso-
ciations of Leo as one could wish for.
The Golden Dawn attribution is to the Sun, itself, (by use of their amended, non
Rabbinical, planetary order) but Leo is even better in view of the card design.
The Rabbinical title is "The Corporeal Intelligence" -- "because it forms ev-
erybody which is formed in all the worlds, and The reproduction of them." (Could
there be a clearer reference to the Sun in the 5th house?"
The appropriateness of this is clear enough, since it is the Archangel Gabriel (Arch-
angel of the Moon) who sounds his trumpet over the opening graves in the design.
Medieval cards also show a square banner descending from the trumpet with an
equal armed cross on it, symbol of the Moon Goddess Hecate. Some designs also
show a large stretch of water --and sometimes even the coffins floating in water--
which is probably a reference to the Qabalistical pool of Yesod, ruled by the Moon.
The Golden Dawn attribution, however, is to the element Fire, since they attributed
the card to the letter Shin, symbol of Fire. This of course, brings together Water and
Fire, as is required in Hermetic symbolism, but clearly it is wrong to attribute a
design obviously correlated with Water to Fire. The correct procedure is that fol-
lowed in the Benjamine series where the designs are always appropriate to the astro-
logical or elemental symbols associated with them, but in which the Hermetic secret
Card XVIII: The Moon
Attribution: Cancer
Card XIX: The Sun
Attribution: Leo
Card XX: The Judgement or The Sarcophagus
Attribution: Moon
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is hinted at by the assignment of the Hebrew letter Mem (Water) to Aries.
The Rabbinical title is "The Collective Intelligence" -- "and astrologers de-
duce from it the judgment of the stars and celestial signs, and perfect their science
according to the rules of the motions of the stars." Here is an explicit reference to
Judgment one of the titles of this card and in a most interesting context -- in connec-
tion with a perfected astrology. The inner meaning of the passage is revealed by what
is pictured. The three figures whom rise from the tomb in the Egyptian card are
wrapped in mummy cloths, which are, of course, long spirals representing time, and
the three-dimensional coffin from which they are freed is similarly a symbol of three
dimensional space. They are, therefore, persons who are passing, either at death or
by reason of conscious mystical development while still possessing a physical body,
from the state of being limited to this physical plane and its conditions into the next
higher plane.
This is the astral plane, symbolized by water, of which element Gabriel is also
the archangel. Now, it is here that the influences dealt with in astrology exists as
actual forces, and where, too, the results of our habitual patterns of acting and think-
ing exist as definite organized thought-cells (crystallized forms in astral matter pat-
terned on our thoughts and activities) which are, in effect, the patterns of our person-
alities, predisposing us to certain ways of acting and thinking in the future, and also
to particular types of experiences in life as other astrological forces act on, or interact
with, these organized vortices. It is an important part of the training of an occultist to
become aware of these thought-cell centers and to develop the ability to modify them
consciously. In this way, as he also becomes fully conversant with the natures and
rhythms of the Cosmic astrological forces --the "tides in the affairs of men" --he is
gradually freed from slavery to his own crystallized past and learns to use the tides to
achieve his own more enlightened purposes, instead of being the sport of fate and
unforeseen circumstances like the majority of mankind. One who is able to be aware
on the Astral and to act there with full understanding of his own surroundings is in a
position to bring this science to final perfection, for he can actually see the centers
and the astrological forces acting there. This Rabbinical text could hardly express
this whole matter more plainly and succinctly, and when one is once aware of it, it is
one of the most telling proofs of all of the correctness of the Benjamine sequence of
Here a young girl appears within, or below, an oval wreath outside of which are
placed the 4 beasts of Ezekiel's and St. John's visions. Usually the meaning is taken
to be Cosmic Consciousness.
Benjamine points out that the Sun is the source of all physical, mental and
emotional power expressed here, and claims that the card represents perfection, union,
and attainment in all three, and also in all the 4 worlds of the Qabalists, symbolized
by the 4 beasts. The Hebrew letter attributed is Shin, symbol of Fire or the Fiery
Spirit, with which, of course, the Sun must be identified. The actual attribution of the
element Fire is reserved for the next card, "The Fool," however.
The Golden Dawn attribution is to Saturn, because in the group's series this is
the last card which, therefore, falls to be paired with the last planet in their amended
planetary sequence, which Saturn is. The coupling (which at first sight may not un-
Card XXI: The World or The Adept
Attribution: Sun
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fairly be described as fantastic) is justified on the ground that the achievement of
complete liberation and illumination while still in the physical body implies the full-
est acquaintance with every aspect of limitation. This is, no doubt, true in general
occult theory, of course, but surely the acquaintance with Saturn is not the final
triumphant outcome of the matter, and one does not end with one's eyes firmly upon
limitations. One comes to terms with these during the running of the race-- particu-
larly, in Tarot symbology, during the sequence represented by cards 14 to 16, temper-
ance, the Devil, and the Blasted tower, in which Saturn is central in the Benjamine
scheme of attributions. The end of the matter is not lead, but alchemical gold, bal-
anced rulership in all three spheres of man's kingdom of body, soul, and spirit, and
only the Sun can symbolize this. The Golden Dawn attribution can really only be
defended (answerably) in the Humpty Dumpty way by saying that what looks low to
you is really highly exalted to me.
The Rabbinical title is "The Perpetual Intelligence" -"Because it regulates the
motions of the Sun and Moon in their proper order, each in an orbit convenient for it
" (One hardly needs to point to the appropriateness of this in view of the fact that all
orbits in the Solar system depend on the Sun.) It is almost incredible to think that all
of these Rabbinical titles have been attributed to different cards and astrological
parallels by the Golden Dawn.
The Fool is really the Key card of the Tarot, and if one can arrive at a satisfactory
attribution to it one will have achieved something which could be the clue to all the
rest. It really all depends, of course, on where in the series it should be placed. The
Golden Dawn system placed it first, and attributes it to Air (on the ground that the
Latin "Follis" means both fool and windbag). In the Hermetic system, Air usually
ranks as the primary element on the grounds that "all other elements take from and
are maintained by Air," as Paracelsus wrote. There has, however, been a tendency in
occult circles to challenge the primacy of Air in favor of that of Fire, taken as a
synonym of electricity and, perhaps with Uranus's rulership of electricity in mind,
some of the Golden Dawn followers now attribute Uranus to The Fool (see footnote
3:1) The design itself hardly suggests this attribution, though it must at once be stated
that there are different versions of this. The traditional one shows an old blind man
carrying a bundle over his shoulder pursued by a dog which has bitten him and torn
his clothes. He is stumbling towards a precipice, or in the Egyptian version towards
the open mouth of a crocodile which is about to devour him, while overhead the Sun
is being eclipsed. In this form the design hardly looks like the beginning of anything.
It is clearly an ending, and an unpleasant one.
However, the Golden Dawn, seeing 0 as the beginning, decided to redraw the
card to suit their interpretation of it and showed a young child under a rose tree in a
spring dawn, holding a grey wolf in check with one hand. Such a radical change
clearly required toning down, and the well known A.E. Waite design is a compro-
mise. It shows a young man clad in a coat with a floral design, carrying a rose in his
hand and with his dog barking at his heels, walking carelessly towards the edge of a
precipice. The idea is that the precipice symbolizes an imminent descent into mani-
festation --i.e., a coming out of 0 into 1. (Those who attribute Uranus to the cards
presumably suppose it to be appropriate to the sudden change ahead.)
Card 0: The Fool or The Materialist
Attribution: Pluto
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This is, of course, is interesting, but on the whole, when one is attempting to
interpret something, it is usually wisest to stick to the form in which one receives it.
I have already mentioned the Golden Dawn switching of cards 8 and 11 and their
rearrangement of the Rabbinical planetary order. Here now is another change, this
time in the actual design of a card!
Benjamine takes the card in its traditional form, and the attribution to Pluto is
justified as follows: There are two sides to Pluto. On the one hand he is the planet of
intense material, emotional and sexual excess, producing an eclipse of all vision of
spiritual realities (the blindness of the man and the eclipse of the Sun shown in the
design) which can only be cured by death and return to one's maker. (N.B.: the croco-
dile is a symbol of deity in Egyptian mythology, though under the destructive or
tempter aspect, identified with Typhon, the devil or adversary, who had a crocodile's
head.) On the other hand, Pluto can also be the planet of regeneration, and the Fool
can therefore also mean one who has voluntarily become a beggar, blind to his own
material well being; one for whom the physical Sun is undergoing eclipse, but only
to reveal the spiritual one, and who will soon be devoured by (i.e. reunited with) the
Spiritual Source.
The Rabbinical title is "The administrative Intelligence," the reason assigned
being "because it directs and associates the motions of the 7 planets, directing all of
them in their proper courses." This is an appropriate summing up of the final state of
attainment achieved by the regenerated Pluto man or woman in whom the seven
interior planets, metals or chakras are properly associated and directed, all in their
proper courses. And such a one is very truly an administrator in the kingdom of
God on earth. Having achieved rulership in his own kingdom, as symbolized in Card
21, he how demonstrates it externally in all the circumstances of his environment as
The fullest significance of this text only appears, however, when one takes it in
conjunction with that for the very first card, the Magician, and the letter Aleph which
goes with it I deliberately did not give this when I discussed the first card, mention-
ing the titles only from number 2 onwards, because I wished to reserve it until this
The first title is "The Fiery Intelligence" and the reason given for this is "be-
cause it is the essence of that curtain which is placed close to the order of the dispo-
sition, and this is a special dignity given to it that it may be able to stand before the
Face of the Cause of Causes." Now, the interesting thing here is that the very first
"Intelligence" is designated Fiery, but is paired with a letter (Aleph) which signifies
a breath (see footnote 3:2), and which is thus the symbol of air. The letter Shin,
which signifies Fire, does not appear until the 21st place in the Hebrew alphabet, to
be immediately followed by the 22nd and last letter, Tavb, which the same Rabbini-
cal tradition that assigns these titles, recorded in the Sephir Yetzirah, assigns to Mars,
the planet peculiarly associated with Fire. It is clear, therefore, that what this tradi-
tion would have us understand is that Fire is both the beginning and end of things, the
inspiration or drawing of breath, (Aleph) and the Perpetual (Shin) Administration or
Manifestation idea in terms of the Greek alphabet in the words "I am Alpha and
Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last, " (spoken by Christ, the
lamb (Aries, Fire) of God).
The deep appropriateness of the Benjamine attributions now appears, for Mer-
cury, assigned to Card, Aleph, is both the astrological symbol of Mind, which is
always associated with the element Air, and also, in alchemical symbolism, one of
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the names of the Universal Solvent. Now, the Universal Solvent is, of course, the
Water of the Wise, and as we have seen in connection with the letter Mem and the
sign Aries, the great alchemical secret is its blending with Fire. When this is achieved,
and the true tincture of the white with red is made, then philosophical gold results.
Moreover, this gold is "potable," i.e., fluid. It is, in fact, the manifestation of the
Spirit (Fire) as the solvent itself, permeating and purging all that is dissolved in it:
i.e., the aims, aspirations, sense of values and even the whole personality, of the
alchemist himself. (The Bible once again expresses the very same idea in Malachi's
words (Malachi 3:2) describing the coming Christ: "for he is like a refiner's fire." We
must remember that this Christ was to be the manifestation of God in Man, and the
root of the word "man" is the Sanscrit "Manes," which means "Mind".)
The "Order of the Disposition", before which Mercury is placed in the text,
must, therefore, be understood as the Primal Cause, the disposing source of all forms
and orders. Mercury is a curtain before it, because any conception or expression of it
in thought or speech (Mercury) can only be a veiling of that which in itself simply is,
inexpressibly. Nevertheless, man (mind) is expressly stated in Genesis 1:27 to have
been created in the image of God, and it is made clear that this is the special dignity
with which he has been endowed, just as the text here says, for he was originally
intended, and is still destined, to converse as an equal with God, Face to face, And
now, Pluto,, assigned to the last letter, which is subtly identified in the Rabbinical
tradition with Fire in its unregenerate animal guise (Mars), (see footnote 3:31 is the
astrological symbol of the only means by which this, which is man's destiny, may be
regained by him -- i.e., through regeneration. Once the full symbolism is under-
stood, there is no other attribution which can possibly be considered here.
THIS, THEN, IS THE BENJAMINE SERIES. It would appear to be an ample
vindication of the traditional order of the cards, whatever the original authority for
that may be. It is for readers now to make their own judgment upon the attributions,
both in an absolute sense and by confronting them card by card and sign for sign with
the generally accepted Golden Dawn ones which I have quoted for comparison. They
should also try placing each of the cards representing signs in their positions on the
cube and noticing how perfectly each fits and reflects the planets round it. each of the
4 cards round the top of the cube flanking the Sun, for instance, is concerned in some
way with Illumination, the Sun and The Chariot being both solar cards, while the
Star depicts the Interior Sun and the Hermit the man who has emerged from the
bondage and limitations of matter and can now reveal his own light. The uprights on
either side of the western face are The Empress and the Emperor, and between them
at the foot of the face is Justice being administered on Earth. The design of this latter
card is a picture of this exact position, moreover, with the Solar canopy overarching
the scene, overhead. The other three sides of the base of the cube are the High Priest-
ess in the North, the Moon in the East and the hanged Man in the South. Each of
these is in someway related to Lunar or Water Symbolism, and Justice, the blind-
folded figure in the West, is not an incongruous companion for them. Together they
surround Venus, the beauty of the Earth, which their collective ministrations produce
but reflection of and response to the radiance from above.
Additionally, the two uprights at the sides of the Eastern face are death (or
Transformation) and Temperance, the two alchemistical cards of the series, placed
on either side of Mercury, the Universal Solvent. Alternatively, if the upright are
considered with respect to the North and South Faces, then Scorpio and Aries, the
two signs of Mars, symbolized as the Emperor and Death, confront Taurus and Libra,
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the two signs of Venus, symbolized as the Empress and the Alchemist (or Temper-
ance), the latter the possessor of the Stone of the Wise which confers Eternal Life.
Moreover, the secret of the Stone of the Wise is balance of polarities, and as if to
make this clear beyond all possibility of mistaking, the Cube completes the picture
with a virtuosic display of complementarities. Thus, the Greater Fortune, Jupiter, is
placed in the middle of the south face, between Aries and Scorpio, the signs of the
Lesser Infortune, and opposite to Saturn the Greater Infortune which is placed in the
middle of the North face between Libra and Taurus, the signs of the Lesser Fortune.
Footnotes Part Three
1) Since the Golden Dawn scheme still retains an explicit attribution for the
Element Fire (to card 20) this arrangement rather seems to imply two attributions to
Fire and a tacit ignoring of Air altogether! The Benjamine attribution of Uranus to
card 10, "The Wheel of Fortune," on the other hand, is in explicit connection with
the element Air, both as mind, since Card 10 is the Intelligence of Will, and also on
the material plane since electrical charges are induced in the air and manifest as
2) The letter--name Aleph signifies "A Bull," but the vocal significance of the
letter is simply the intake of breath before utterance.
3) This subtlety, of course, disappears in the Golden Dawn "amendment" which
replaces Mars by Saturn. Perhaps it would be well at this point to mention once again
that this group felt constrained to make these amendments because they believed
that the Tarot card sequence had to fit one definite arrangement arrived at by means
of them, just as it stood. The Benjamine approach is a radical departure from this
view, for as he says in "The Sacred Tarot," pages 14-15: "Just what the idea is which
is...associated with each letter it is a function of the Tarot to reveal, "but in an indi-
rect way, nevertheless, for "as there are 12 zodiacal signs, so there are 12 single
letters, although in detail they do not correspond to them." The Rabbinical attribu-
tions are no more than half the key to the inward meaning of each letter. Only when
the other half is supplied by the discovery of the meaningful astrological series which
parallels the card sequence does the full and extraordinary profound significance of
the whole scheme become apparent. The examples I have given to illustrate this,
such as this one of the redemption of Mars (unregenerate desire) by Pluto (regenerate
desire), symbolically associated with the last letter Mem, should be supplemented by
a careful comparison of all the attributions which appear in the Sepher Yetzirah
(Westcott version) with the complete Benjamin series. This is a most illuminating
and rewarding exercise.
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Chapter 1
Doctrine of Kabalism
HE WORD Kabala signifies traditional knowledge. It thus refers to the Oral
Law, as handed down from antiquity; and embraces the occult traditions of
all lands and all peoples.
Often it is used merely as referring to the esoteric doctrines of the Jews; but in its
broader sense it includes also the secret doctrine of other races. This secret doctrine,
common to many lands, was jealously guarded from the profane, and was never
permitted to pass into writing except in such ambiguous terms as to baffle the
uninitiated as to its true purport.
In this sense the sacred books of the world, including the Avesta, the Vedas and the
Bible are largely kabalistical; for they set forth traditions that are capable of an inner,
or esoteric, interpretation. In fact, there are usually several interpretations possible,
each more inner version revealing a deeper truth to those who have advanced along
the path far enough to comprehend it.
The Kabala has two divisions; the Written Kabala and the Unwritten Kabala.
Of the unwritten Kabala, S. L. MacGregor Mathers, in his Kabbala Unveiled says:
"The term `Unwritten Qbalah' is applied to certain knowledge which is never
entrusted to writing, but communicated orally. I may say no more on this point, not
even whether I myself have or have not received it."
The author of these lessons is not so modest about his acquaintance with the
unwritten kabala. He has received it fully, and has also investigated the written
traditions of the Jews and of all other peoples having had much influence in shaping
the world's thought. And this seems the proper place to point out that the unwritten
kabala, like the written kabala, is set forth in symbolical language, with purposeful
blinds and subterfuges to confuse the uninitiated; so that of the few who undoubtedly
exist at the present day who have received it, most remain in as much ignorance of its
true interpretation as the majority of students do after studying the more accessible
written kabala.
This unwritten kabala has been transmitted only through certain secret schools.
Those receiving it well merit what is given to them. They are left to their own devices
in the matter of interpretation. And because the real keys to its
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interpretation--astrology and the tarot--have been largely ignored, or distorted,
they have floundered sadly in arriving at its meaning. Whether written or unwritten,
the kabala is a philosophy correlated to esoteric astrology as exemplified by the tarot;
and it can only be comprehended fully by those who perceive the true relation
between astrological energies and their pictured tarot exemplification.
The Kabala of The Jews
--Because the Jewish kabala has been the source of inspiration to so many
alchemists, metaphysicians, occultists and mystics, it deserves special attention, and
the remainder of the lesson will largely be devoted to it. It has three main divisions:
A. The Practical Kabala. B. The Literal Kabala. C. The Dogmatic Kabala.
A. The practical kabala treats of ceremonial magic, and includes the making of
magic circles, wands, swords and pentacles, and the use of inscriptions and symbols
for performing wonders. It deals with necromancy, sorcery, exorcisms, sigils,
enchantments and communications with angels and devils.
Accessible books treating of this subject are: The Sixth and Seventh Book of Moses,
The Greater Keys of Solomon the King, and The Lesser Keys of Solomon. Needless
to say, as set forth in detail in Chapter 3 of Course 18, Imponderable Forces, these
books and all such practices are highly dangerous, and innocence is no protection to
those who dabble in such matters.
B. The literal kabala is so written that the letters and numbers and words must be
transposed to perceive the meaning. It is a work really written in code, and must be
systematically decoded to have any value. And the code in which it is written, and
which must be used to decipher it, takes three different forms as follows:
1. Gematria
In this system, words of the same numerical value are used as symbols of each other, and
phrases of the same numerical value are employed to explain each other. And as each
Hebrew letter is a number, this number is also obtained and used, by adding the numerical
value of the letters of a word or phrase.
2. Temura
This is a code in which, according to prescribed rules, certain letters are substituted for other
letters. In addition to this permutation, the form of the letters occasionally used, and the
variations in spelling, all have a hidden meaning, and for important matters anagrams are
3. Notariquon
In the practice of this, abbreviations are extensively used. Every letter, for instance, may be
taken as the abbreviation of a word, and a single word expanded into a sentence. Or the first
letters, or the medials, of every word in a sentence may be used to construct one word that
conveys the mystical import it is desired to impart.
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But even after, though determining just what code has been used, having translated
the literal kabala into ordinary language, it still presents the matter in the form of
universal symbols, which, while quite pregnant with meaning to those who
understand this universal language, is merely a collection of babbling allegories to
one ignorant of the tarot and astrology.
C. The dogmatic kabala. This division of the Jewish secret doctrine has four chief
headings, each embracing more or less numerous commentaries which were written
at different times by different writers: 1. Sephir Yetzirah. 2. Sephir Sephiroth. 3.
Asch Metzareph. 4. The Zohar. Yet none of what is now called the Jewish Kabala
was placed in writing before the beginning of the Christian Era.
We are seriously informed by commentators that it was first taught by God to his select
angels who formed a school in Paradise. Then, after the fall, the doctrine was
communicated to man that by its means he might regain his lost estate. From Adam it
passed to Noah, then to Abraham, on to the Egyptians, from whom it reached Moses.
Moses was further instructed regarding it by an angel, during his forty years in the
wilderness. Then Moses injected its doctrines covertly into the first four books of the
Pentateuch, and initiated Aaron and the Seventy Elders into its secrets. From them,
according to this tradition, it was handed down through an unbroken line of
priesthood succession which included David and Solomon, to the time of the
destruction of the second temple; when, for the first time, it was committed to
This account, due allowance being granted to its symbolism, conforms rather closely
to the traditions regarding the line of descent of the secret doctrine as recorded by
initiates of other than the Jewish race.
It is held by this tradition that once the earth had a very different climate, warm and
mild, and that the people of the Golden Age, like those in Jewish Paradise, were free
from strife, and needed to take no thought as to what they should eat or what they
should wear. So pure were they that they had constant communion with the angels.
But gradually changing climatic conditions, in which life became increasingly
severe, coarsened the bodies and the minds of the people of the earth. And finally, so
terrible was the struggle for survival with the advent of the Age of Iron, when a
glacial sheet covered most of the northern hemisphere, that man was forced to eat the
flesh of animals to avoid starvation. And thus descending to the plane of a
carnivorous creature, the increasing activity of his animal soul cut off his ability to
communicate with still higher entities. He no longer could get his information direct
from the angels, because he had become too selfish and coarse to be able to tune in on
their vibratory rates, and he must, perforce, get whatever he wished of the secret
doctrine from those of his race who had preserved the tradition from an earlier time.
This kabalistic knowledge was a teaching concerning the origin of the universe,
man's proper relation to God and all other entities, why man entered material
conditions, and how he might through partaking of the Tree of Good and Evil
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ultimately regain his spiritual estate and also partake of the Tree of Life, and so attain
From the children of the Golden Age, the tradition relates, this information was
handed down by word of mouth, as allegorical stories, to more material times. And
thus it came to be an essential part of the wisdom for which the ancient lands of
Atlantis and Mu are renowned.
Before the last cataclysm, in the Bible referred to as the flood of Noah, when the last
of these two older continents sank, the Priests of Stellar Wisdom, perceiving through
astrological cycles the approach of such a disaster, had encouraged the establishment
of colonies in what later were to become the seven ancient centers of
civilization--Egypt, India, Crete, Peru, Mexico, China and Chaldea. And to these
colonies then established, that the ancient spiritual wisdom might not perish from the
earth, they sent those to reside who were familiar with it.
Just when the colonists from Atlantis or Mu reached their various outposts is not
clearly defined. But in Egypt, Moses, educated by the priesthood, came directly in
contact with their teachings, and in his wilderness wanderings received further
communications from higher intelligences; all of which became a part of the doctrine
held by the Jewish priests, and handed down to later times in the form of abstruse
It seems certain that none of what now is known as the Jewish Kabala was written
until after the commencement of the Christian era. The first to place any of this
traditional knowledge in writing is reputed to have been Ben-Ha-Kanah, about 70
A.D. Rabbi Ismael be Elisha wrote about 121 A.D. And Simon be Jochai, another
Talmudist, the supposed writer of the Zohar, appeared about 150 A.D.
However as a matter of historical research, it is found that the Kabala first put in an
external appearance in the seventh century, apparently through Neo-Platonist and
Neo-Pythagorean channels. The main body of the Zohar seems to have been
unknown, except in the secret schools, until the thirteenth century of our era.
The early writings on the Kabala include a work called Palaces, describing God's
throne and His angelic household, a work of The Dimensions of Deity, and the
Alphabet of Rabbi Akiba. In this letter each Hebrew letter is taken to represent a
primordial spiritual idea.
The Sephir Yetzirah
--In the eighth century the Sephir Yetzirah put in an external appearance. It is a
complete philosophical system, divided into 33 brief sections, each in reality based
upon one of the 12 zodiacal signs, one of the 10 planets, one of the 10 numerals, or the
seal of the earth.
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The work opens with the statement that there are 32 paths of secret wisdom. These
are further elaborated in a commentary, called the 32 Paths of Wisdom, written in 32
brief sections.
Sephir Yetzirah signifies The Book of Formation, and is supposed to have been
dictated by Abraham. The key to its meaning is the manner in which it is divided into
chapters. As in all there are 6 chapters, the formation of the universe is to be
explained through a study of the number 6. This number, as reference to Arcanum VI
indicates, has for divinatory significance the word Temptation, and in numbers
indicates the oscillation of unequilibriated forces in their action and reaction.
Astrologically, it corresponds to Venus, the planet of love. Therefore, according to
the system upon which the Sephir Yetzirah is to be interpreted, the idea is conveyed
that the Infinite was Tempted into expression through the desire to love. The
Supernal Mind, that it might enjoy love, brought forth the manifested universe.
Of these 6 chapters, the first contains 12 sections, which, of course, correspond to 12
zodiacal signs.
The second chapter has 5 sections and the third chapter has 5 sections. Thus these two
chapters represent the universal man divided as male and female; the number of man
being 5 and the number of woman being 5; and together these numbers embracing the
10 numerals of the decade.
The fourth chapter has 4 sections, each representing one of the formative attributes of
the septenary, corresponding to the 4 negative planets: Saturn, Venus, Moon and
The fifth chapter has 3 sections, each representing one of the 3 active principles of the
septenary, corresponding to Sun, Mars and Jupiter.
The sixth chapter contains the remaining four sections each representing one of the
three remaining planets of the chain, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto, and the seal of the earth
which synthesizes these 32 numbers and astrological forces into a single grand unity.
Masonry and the tarot are both founded upon 33 universal principles. These are
rather unsatisfactorily set forth in kabalistical code in the Sephir Yetzirah. They bear
a correspondence in human anatomy to the 24 vertebrae plus the 9 ankylosed bones
that form the base of the spine. In the widest sense Deity is the 33, or unifying
principle. Thus we have the doctrine set forth kabalistically that Deity, all-potential
and alone, was Tempted into an expression of his Love, and this formative power
became diversified into the 32 principles through which His love is Realized.
The Letters
--In the kabalistical system each Hebrew letter is not only a number but in addition
represents an idea. Just what the idea is which is thus associated with each letter it is a
function of the Tarot to reveal.
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The Hebrew alphabet as a whole contains 22 letters. These are divided by kabalists
into three groups. The first group contains the three mother letters, representing
certain general principles, from which the other letters and their corresponding
principles were formed. Then there are seven double letters, and finally twelve single
The three mother letters are Aleph, Mem, and Shin. Aleph represents the plane of
spirit, Mem relates to the astral world, and Shin to the physical where all is given
form. Thus do the three mother letters correspond to ego, Soul and Body of the
Universal Man.
Certain other letters are sometimes aspirated and sometimes not, and are thus called
double letters. As there are seven planets and seven active attributes in nature so are
there seven double letters; Beth, Gimel, Daleth, Caph, Pe, Resh, and Tau. And as
there are 12 zodiacal signs, so there are 12 single letters, although in detail they do not
correspond to them: He, Vau, Zain, Cheth, Teth, Jod, Lamed, Nun, Sameck, Ayin,
Tzaddi, and Quoph.
And now we arrive at a point which may easily prove somewhat confusing to the
student. It is the numerical equivalence of the Hebrew letters, and of the
corresponding English letters.
The Hebrew and the Chaldean square-formed letters are identical, and the
square-formed Egyptian letters are very similar. These letters were originally
hieroglyphics for the spiritual ideas represented by the corresponding Major
Arcanum of the tarot, these, in turn, being correlated spiritually to astrology. Each
letter, thus, expressed a number--some number from 1 to 22--which had the same
thought-vibratory rate as one of the 22 astrological influences.
But these letters coming into use by those uninitiated in this spiritual and vibratory
relation naturally were subject to conventionalizing influences. And furthermore,
those who sought to make translations from Hebrew into the English language had
no knowledge of the vibratory rate of a letter, and no care for its spiritual
correspondence. Consequently, translators have made use of equivalents which,
although convenient for them, are not of the same vibratory rate.
Therefore, to preserve the true numerical value of each square-formed letter, occult
students have continued to use their original numerical significance rather than those
established by later conventional use. And in deriving the English equivalent of a
square-formed ancient letter, in those cases where translators have substituted an
English letter with a different thought-vibratory rate, occult students use a true
vibratory equivalent. Thus the Hebrew Tau, which means the sign of the cross, is
translated conventionally as Th; and Teth, which means serpent, is translated
conventionally as T. But not only is T in the form of the Tau cross used in many lands,
but with its point down thus represents the creative energy diverted to earthly ends,
and as such it has the significance of 22 and not 9; and 9 has the vibration of Th, the
serpent, the spiral of life, being the Deific number.
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This translation of T and Th is the outstanding difference between conventional
translators and occult students. But it should be understood by those who study the
kabala and the tarot, that in such studies the real vibratory rate of a letter is the
important thing in determining its correspondence in another language; and that the
English equivalent of each square-formed letter has been tested out on this basis.
The correct numerical and English equivalent of each square-formed ancient letter
will be found in a table at the front of this booklet. And that the student may also have
the conventional, and therefore exoteric, significance, a list here follows:
1. Aleph, A, means ox. 2. Beth, B, means house. 3. Gimel, G, means camel. 4. Daleth,
D, means door. 5. He, H, means window. 6. Vau, V, means nail. 7. Zain, Z, means
weapon. 8. Cheth, Ch, means fence. 9. Teth, T, means serpent. 10. Jod, J, means
hand. 20. Caph, K, means palm of hand. 30. Lamed, L, means ox-goad. 40. Mem, M,
means water. 50. Nun, N, means fish. 60. Samek, S, means support. 70. Ayin, O,
means eye. 80. Pe, P, means mouth. 90. Tzaddi, Tz, means fishing-hook. 100.
Quoph, Q, means back of head. 200. Resh, R, means head. 300. Shin, Sh, means
tooth. 400. Tau, Th, means sign of the cross.
Sephir Sephiroth
--The Sephir Sephiroth is also called the Book of Emanations. It treats of the
numerical expansion of the undifferentiated state of evolution. That is, it explains
that creation, as it later came into existence, was first in the Divine Mind. Then to
give this mental conception a more external form it was projected into an
evolutionary system, by means of definite impulses, each of which bears a relation to
a certain number. The universe is thus shown to have been created according to a
definite plan, the parts of this plan bearing numerical relations to each other. This
plan calls for a continuous expansion of possibilities, whereby an infinitely diverse
number of forms move perpetually forward toward greater perfection.
The work, as written, is highly mystical; for it considers these impulses from the
Divine Mind, by which the universe is brought into existence, as bearing the same
relation to each other as do certain numbers. These numbers are thus the
representatives of universal principles.
The student, therefore, who would read the Sephir Sephiroth understandingly must
be well versed both in the Hermetic System of Numbers, and the Doctrine of
Signatures; for the Doctrine of Signatures reveals in full concrete details the action of
those principles which are but abstractions when merely considered as numerical
Asch Metzareph
--Asch Metzareph, or Purifying Fire, treats of alchemy. To comprehend the
allegories in which it is written the student must have a thorough knowledge of
chemistry, of astrology, and of the tarot. The action of substance upon substance, as
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set forth in this treatise in the language of universal symbolism, depends upon the
inner nature of each; upon that quality which we now recognize as its vibratory rate.
The Zohar
--The most studied of the Jewish kabalistical works is the Zohar, or Book of
Splendor. It is generally supposed to have been written by Simon be Jochai, about
150 A.D. Moses de Leon made it accessible to the public in the thirteenth century.
It embraces The Book of Concealed Mystery, The Greater Holy Assembly, The
Lesser Holy Assembly, The Aged Man, The Book of Clear Light, The Faithful
Shepherd, The Palaces, The Secret of The Law, The Concealed Treatise, Mysteries
of Mysteries, Song of Songs, Come and See, The Youth, Illustrations of The Law,
The Early Work, and certain fragments.
The aim is to reveal to the worthy the nature of the Supreme Being, the equilibrium of
contrarities, cosmogony, the symbolism of numerals, the nature of man and angels,
the law as revealed, the nature and destiny of the soul, and much about angels,
elementals, demons and other occult intelligences.
The most essential and most emphasized of all kabalistical doctrines is expressed in
translations of the Jewish work as "Quod Superius, Quod Inferius," which means,
that which is above is as that which is below, the Macroposopus, the universal man, is
to be understood by a study of Microposopus, the finite man. God is thus related to
the natural universe as the ego is related to the body of man. Consequently, we find
Deity commonly referred to as The Ancient One, The Vast Countenance, Illimitable
One, The Concealed of the Concealed, Adam Kadmon (the Archetypal Man), etc.
Next in kabalistical importance comes the doctrine of the Ten Emanations of the
Sephiroth, by which the universe was created. Sephiroth means numerical
emanation, and the kabala teaches that all manifestation is accomplished in definite
numerical proportions through actions and reactions in the One Primeval
undifferentiated substance.
Prior to creation there was Ain Soph Aur, meaning limitless light, or
non-differentiated substance. The first emanation, or numerical impulse is known as
Kether, meaning Crown, and symbolizing Motion or Life.
Instantly, upon motion being transmitted to the non-polarized, universal,
all-diffusive spirit, it becomes polarized into two attributes, positive and negative,
masculine and feminine, action and reaction; for life or motion is impossible apart
from sex, or polarity. It is impossible to have action without reaction, positive
polarity without negative polarity, motion without something moving, something
moving without form. Consequently, springing into existence simultaneously with
Kether, or Life, are two other emanations called Chocmah and Binah. These usually
are translated as Wisdom and Intelligence by theological kabalists who try to
dethrone anything feminine from the Deific Trinity. But all initiates are aware that
they mean Love and Light; for Love is the highest and truest Wisdom.
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However large the orbit of the student's investigations, or however recondite the
plane of its action, he will find that it must start with, and finally end in, this
kabalistical trinity of Life, Light and Love. From this primitive trinity of positive,
negative and union the universe became differentiated into Seven specific attributes
through seven additional emanations.
The Ten Emanations of the Sephiroth are, therefore, the Seven Active Principles of
Nature springing from a central source of Life, Light and Love--from a triune
God-head, or Spiritual Sun--just as we receive magnetism, light and heat from the
physical sun.
Although it has been well known that there is a strict correspondence between
astrological principles and the 10 Emanations of the Sephiroth, the Emanations
really manifesting as astrological forces, this correspondence has heretofore been
carefully concealed as part of the Greater Mysteries. Also, as the universe is divided
into positive, negative and union, kabalists have divided the 10 Emanations into
three pillars, or Trees. The tree on the right is the Biblical tree of Good, the Masonic
pillar Jachin, kabalistically known as the Father, or Pillar of Mercy. The tree on the
left is the biblical tree of Evil, the Masonic pillar Boaz, kabalistically known as the
Mother, or Pillar of Justice. Centrally between these two trees of the knowledge of
good and evil stands the tree of Life, conferring Immortality. It is the place of union
of Jachin and Boaz, kabalistically known as the Shekinah.
But early kabalists, to conceal their knowledge from the profane, in illustrating the
trees in the form of a diagram, gave it incorrectly, knowing the spiritually
enlightened in the course of their initiation would discover the error. It would thus
point to the truth without actually revealing it, which by their oath they were bound
not to do. In all current works upon the kabala, therefore, being copied from older
works, we find emanation 2-4-7 constituting the Tree of Good, 3-5-8 the Tree of Evil,
and 1-6-9-10 the Tree of Life, the Shekinah, or Pillar of Mildness. The correct
diagram is given on page 130 in chapter 6, where it will be seen that as should be, the
even, or esoteric, numbers 2-4-8 constitute the right-hand Pillar of Goodness, and the
exoteric numbers 3-5-7 constitute the left-hand Pillar of Evil. Also it will be seen that
the necessary planetary correspondences to each of the emanations when arranged in
the latter manner will place benefic planets on the Tree of Good and malefic planets
on the Tree of Evil.
The First emanation is called Kether, meaning Crown, and symbolizing Life or
Motion. It corresponds to the planet Pluto. It belongs at the head of the Tree of Life,
containing latent within itself both male and female potencies.
The Second emanation is Chocmah, meaning Wisdom, and symbolizing Love. It
corresponds to the planet Neptune, the head of the Tree of Good, in a spiritual sense
being positive to Uranus, though not so from the material plane.
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The Third emanation is Binah, meaning Intelligence, and symbolizing Light. It
corresponds to the planet Uranus, being the head of the Tree of Evil, being external
to, and therefore more gross and spiritually negative than Neptune, and also
commonly much more malefic.
The Fourth emanation is Chesed, meaning Mercy, and symbolizing Beneficence. It
corresponds to the planet Jupiter, being the middle of the Tree of Good, and positive
to the Saturn principle of Evil.
The Fifth emanation is Geburah, meaning Severity, and symbolizing Affliction. It
corresponds to the planet Saturn, the middle of the Tree of Evil, and is negative to the
principle of Good.
The Sixth emanation is Tippereth, meaning Beauty, symbolizing Attraction. It
corresponds to the planet Venus, the middle of the Tree of Life, where all influences
join in a common harmonious Union.
The Seventh emanation is Netzach, meaning Victory and symbolizing Conflict. It
corresponds to the planet Mars, the foot of the Tree of Evil, and is negative to
Mercury even as blind force is ever subject to intelligence.
The Eighth emanation is Hod, meaning Splendor, and symbolizing Knowledge. It
corresponds to the planet Mercury, the foot of the Tree of Good, and is positive to the
instincts and impulses of Mars.
The Ninth emanation is Yesod, meaning Foundation and symbolizing Formation. It
corresponds to the Moon, next to the foot of the Tree of Life, the enfolding, formative
power that gives external expression to Tippereth.
The Tenth emanation is Malkuth, symbolizing Vitality. It corresponds to the Sun, at
the foot of the Tree of Life, wherein the Spiritual Ideals of Kether, having been
attracted by Tippereth, and having undergone formative gestation of Yesod, are
brought forth in full Virility of expression, becoming in man Self-Conscious-
These three trees have been the great mystery of the kabala, and volumes of abstruse
reasoning and mystical allegories have been written in the attempt to throw light
upon it; for kabalists have all perceived that the Tree of Life, or the four emanations
1-6-9-10, constitutes the secret of Immortality. But just what this signifies in human
life only a few have discovered, and others have blundered along blindly for want of
proper keys, which astrology and the tarot alone afford. But the moment any kabalist
is shown that Venus is Tippereth he immediately perceives the truth.
The head of the Tree of Life is the planet Pluto, symbolizing the separation of the
sexes, the place where soul-mates part on their downward journey and the place
where they must again unite on their upward path. But the Tree of Life itself is
formed by the union of the Tree of Good with the Tree of Evil--three positive forces
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and three negative forces meeting at a common point called Tippereth. Thus what
Venus is to the human body, by the law of correspondence, Tippereth must be to the
Tree of Life.
Now Venus rules the seed and union, and kabalists are well aware that the Shekinah,
or Tree of Life, is some kind of union. But what they usually fail to recognize is that in
man there is a spiritual seed as well as one physical, and that union, as indicated by
the four vibratory levels, or stations, represented by the four emanations within the
Tree of Life, can take place on the plane of degeneration, on the level of generation,
in the realm of regeneration, or in the exalted state of the reunion of soul-mates.
Yet Venus, the planet of love, is the key to this revelation. For those who recognize
that Tippereth is a seed endowed with life during union, giving formative expression
in the womb of Yesod, and brought forth into life and action by Malkuth, even as
daily this is known to happen in the generation and birth of children, should easily
recognize that the same principle applies to the evolution of Immortality. But, of
course, as in bringing forth life in the domain of Malkuth, at the foot of the tree, the
energies are directed toward the earth, and as immortality is not of earth but of the
highest spheres, the energies must be directed toward the highest level of union,
toward the exalted and permanent exchange of spiritual energies which corresponds
to Pluto when that planet is represented by the letter T with its point up, instead of
down toward Malkuth, as commonly written.
A few kabalists have perceived the truth of this matter. One, for instance, who was
also a great alchemist, states in his writings that he was acquainted with the mystery
of transmutation but had never proceeded to the practice because he had not found a
woman who could help him in the work.
Also Mr. A. E. Waite, the eminent kabalist, in speaking of the Shekinah says: "I have
said there are intimations of this state in eastern teachings, by which, I mean India,
but that--so far as I am aware--they have not passed into writing." And he further
concludes, after an exhaustive study of kabalistical literature: "We shall come to
recognize only one secret doctrine of Jewry, which is the secret concerning sex."
--This seems to be the place to mention that the Jewish Kabala teaches
reincarnation, but only for those who fail to finish their work, and never more than
three times. And even in these instances, more often than not, more than one soul
occupies the same body to gain strength. Thus the teachings of the Zohar contradict
the teachings of reincarnation as commonly taught in the East. It sets forth the
impossibility of numerous reincarnations, and really seems to be a confused notion
regarding the attachment of a discarnate soul to one in the flesh for some definite
gaining of experience or the performance of some unusual purpose.
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--The doctrine of soul-mates is quite distinctly taught in the Zohar, it being stated
that those who abide by the laws of the Lord will meet and marry their true
soul-mates; but that those who pervert the law will be denied such union. Impurity
keeps soul-mates apart, but purity and a moral life bring them together, and when so
united there also will be a permanent heavenly union after death.
God, Himself, is both Father and Mother. The word Elohim, translated in Genesis as
God, is Feminine plural; but the translators of the Bible, not wishing women to share
in anything Divine, have rendered it throughout in the Masculine singular. There is,
however, an inadvertent admission of the Father-Mother principle when Adam is
said to have been made in the image of "Elohim, Male and Female made He them."
Hebrew scholars say that "Eloh" is feminine singular, and that the ending "im," is a
termination of the masculine plural, the two being used together to indicate a
feminine potency united to a masculine idea.
Throughout the Kabala "The Ancient of Days" is considered both Male and Female,
and the Ten Emanations are divided into 5 positive and 5 negative attributes.
The Four Realms
--The Ten Emanations of the Sephiroth are divided into groups having affinity with
the four worlds; but at the same time the ten emanations also each manifest in these
four realms. The four kabalistical worlds are:
1. Atziluth, meaning Emanation and symbolizing the celestial realm and the
element fire.
2. Briah, meaning Creation and symbolizing the spiritual realm and the element air.
3. Yetzirah, meaning Formation and symbolizing the astral realm and the element
4. Assiah, meaning Action and symbolizing the physical realm and the element
The first 3 emanations relate particularly to Celestial realms, the place of ideals, even
as Pluto, Neptune and Uranus have an influence over the highest ideals of man.
The second 3 emanations pertain specifically to Spiritual realms, to the creative
regions, even as Jupiter, Saturn and Venus have an influence over man's moral
nature, his reflective powers and his affections.
The third 3 emanations relate more closely to the formative regions, to the Astral
realms, even as Mercury, Mars and the Moon image, construct and mold the products
of man's genius.
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And the final emanation belongs to the Physical world, to the realm of practical
action, even as the Sun vitalizes and brings forth from the soil innumerable forms of
Interpreting the Kabala
--The great kabalistical student, Eliphas Levi, asserts that the kabala is a sealed book
to anyone unfamiliar with the tarot. Not only is this true, but the tarot, as here
presented, will be found a key to unlock all other sacred books as well. To the
discriminating student the most difficult kabalistical phrases will yield their inner
meaning when the tarot methods are applied.
Very briefly to illustrate, we find The Book of Concealed Mystery opens thus:
1. The Book of Concealed Mystery is the Book of the equilibrium of balance." The balance
here referred to is Polarity, as exemplified by the Second Major Arcanum of the tarot.
2. For before there was equilibrium, countenance beheld not countenance." That is,
consciousness was not possible before this duality.
3. And the Kings of ancient times were dead, and their crowns were found no more: and the
earth was desolate." These kings of the tarot being in ancient times, indicates a previous
round of evolution; being dead refers to the cosmic sleep of nirvana. Kether, or Crown,
means activity; therefore, intelligence of the Divine Mind was inactive, and there was no
differentiation in progress.
4. Until that head, desired by all desires, appeared and communicated the vestments of
honor." Arcanum I, Deific Intelligence, awakens and sends the first Divine thought-wave
throbbing throughout the unmanifested void of Ain Soph Aur.
5. This equilibrium hangeth in that region which is negatively existent in "The Ancient
One." Arcanum II, Isis, where polarity first manifests, is negative, or feminine.
Such explanations might be carried out in regard to every Kabalistical statement.
--As the Jewish Kabala is mostly written in code, and all of it in the form of
allegories, it takes much effort for the student to form a clear idea of its chief tenets. I
will, therefore, here sum them up in unequivocal language:
1. God and the Universe are the Ego and Body of the Grand Man, or Macrocosm; and finite
man, or the microcosm, is a miniature copy of the Grand Man, corresponding to Him in all
2. The universe sprang into differentiated existence in conformity to the law of numbers.
These ten emanations from Deity manifest on every plane as 3 general and 7 specific
attributes. In their interaction with one another they form, by a principle similar to that
giving musical overtones, 22 less abstract and more specialized influences, or
astrological qualities. These, manifesting as the 12 zodiacal signs and 10 planets of the
chain, together with the 10 original numbers, form the 32 paths of evolution, which really
are the 32 factors of all manifested existence. Yet at any given time all these 32
influences converge at every point in the universe. That is, in some quantity they are
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everywhere present. And the specific point where they thus manifest--the earth, for
instance--being a synthesis of their influence, constitutes a 33rd factor.
3. Great importance is attached to sex, it being taught that man can reach the feminine
principle above only through union. The Shekinah is perfect union; and it is taught that
mankind approaches God only through Shekinah. Those of impure mind and gross passions
can not partake of Shekinah, for Shekinah is the Tree of Life, partaking of the fruits of which
mankind is brought face to face with Adonai; entering thus into Divine Consciousness.
4. Souls are differentiated in pairs, have an existence before material birth, are separated
before incarnation; and it is this separation which constitutes the original transgression. But
through living a pure and spiritual life on earth they ultimately are attracted to each other and
may even meet on earth. This meeting is the Shekinah, and in time permanently reunites
them in heaven.
5. As exemplifying these four doctrines and their numerous offshoots, there is the mystery
of the pronunciation of the name of Deity, which in the Bible is translated Jehovah, and in
Hebrew is a word of four letters, IEVE, or Jod-He-Vau-He.
Jewish tradition holds that, "He who can rightly pronounce it, causeth heaven and
earth to tremble, for it is the name which rusheth through the universe."
The real significance of this venerated word is that it stands as representing the four
universal principles; and therefore he who understands these four letters is also able
to comprehend all power and all manifestation; and he who is able to pronounce
it--or utilize his knowledge--is able to live in complete harmony with the Divine
Law and thus partakes also of Divine power. It really signifies that nothing is
impossible to one who unites himself to the Cosmic Will.
Because it is composed of four letters the name is called the Tetragrammaton. These
four letters, which are symbols of positive, negative, union and vibration, can be
transposed in 12 different ways, all conveying the same meaning, just as nature
manifests through the 12 zodiacal signs, yet in essence remains the same.
These twelve ways of expressing the Deific name are called the 12 banners. These
banners are spelled thus:
The Tarot Cards Utilize
Extra-Sensory Perception
and Extra-Physical Powers
--A vast amount of experimentation by universities in America and in England since
the discovery of Pluto in 1930 not only proves that man possesses the power to gain,
through extra-sensory perception, information not accessible to reason and the
physical senses, but that this perception extends into both the past and the future.
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On the inner plane consciousness can be extended unhindered by physical distance,
and extended backwards and forwards in physical time. Even as to gain knowledge
on the physical plane, so on the inner plane the attention must be focused on the
information desired. The tarot cards, through their universal symbols, are designed,
among other things, to assist in extending the inner-plane consciousness and
focusing it on the information desired.
All mental processes are governed by the LAW OF ASSOCIATION. What has been
perceived on the inner plane through extra-sensory perception resides in the
unconscious mind as a memory. To remember it--to bring it up into objective
consciousness--there must be a line of association between what is in objective
consciousness and this memory. The symbols on the tarot cards are the most
effective means known of forming the associations that enable what was perceived
through extra-sensory perception to be recognized by objective consciousness.
The university experimenters have also demonstrated that physical objects can be
influenced without the aid of any physical contact with them. This result of using
extra-physical power they call the PK (Psychokinetic) Effect. The unconscious
mind, or soul, uses this power to cause the tarot cards in a spread to become so placed
as to reveal information obtained through extra-sensory perception.