Before I get into a long dissertation on the Mystery that is the Tarot Fool, I'd like to introduce another interesting Tarot Deck. It is called the Spiral Tarot
and is created by the Author Kay Steventon.
The cards are made in Italy and published by U.S. Games Systems, inc.
The author herself has dedicated these cards to her Celtic grandmother who used to read playing cards. In her own words Kay says," When I was a child it was she who guided me through a perilous journey. She instilled in me the philosophy that life is like that ancient symbol, the spiral; each phase of life has a beginning, runs its course and comes to an end before moving to the next cycle. The ultimate aspiration is to be like the Tarot Fool, not allowing past experiences to hold us back, but embracing the new cycle with open heart and mind, each time with a little more wisdom."
Enclosed in this blog are illustrations of the back of the Spiral Tarot cards, a classic spiral design and a beautifully illustrated introduction card.
0-THE FOOL is the most esoteric of all the Tarot Arcane . Every card
in the Tarot Deck is an aspect of THE FOOL-0, just as everything in this Universe is an aspect of One energy.
As a Path, THE FOOL
connects Kether (Crown) with Chokmah (Wisdom). To the Qabalist, Kether
is known as the Source of All, and Chokmah is known as Father God. The
Path of Aleph,meaning OX, is about the "flowing of Life Force and
creative power", showing the "SPIRIT'S aim to be that of Earth and/or
Sensual Being. Crowley symbolizes this "Holy Spirit" ( The One Spirit on
every level of the Tree of Life) as a dove in the Thoth Deck Card.
Crowley also called The Letter Aleph, a phallic symbol.....but then so
is the Projected Will that is THE MAGUS, and one wonders if Crowley was
so besotted with the Phallus, that he was unable to see anything else;
However,truth be told, by reference to Sexes and sexuality do we com to
the minutest glimmering of understanding about the Electric (male) and Magnetic (Female) Universe.
To even begin understanding THE FOOL, we must entertain a multifaceted and fluid interpretation of Force (male) and Form (female).
Paul Foster Case calls this Eleventh Path, in his class text THE THIRTY-TWO PATHS OF WISDOM, the fiery or Scintillating Intelligence.
which makes sense as The Path of Aleph boarders on the Limitless Light
(Ain Soph), which is "not" or 0. This is Light without limit that is darkness
to us who need a beginning and a end to see. So here we try to explain
what can't be seen as The Fiery Darkness which is the possibility of
vibration or motion and the First Perception of the One having potential
In the context of Masculine sexuality, the Fool is the
Testes, and the Magus is the Phallus,(represented by the three flowers
beneath the spread legs of THE FOOL) as He directs active first flow
from the Fool rather than potentiality doing so. However, I fear that is
a rather limiting concept of the ONE-----as the Ain Soph is 0, but
then, all concepts are less than the potential for conception.
may reason that the potential for Thought, comes from the Dark Energy as
Dark Matter (The First Material). The appearance of Thought emanates
Mind, which is the vessel for Thought and/or Womb of Thought Forms, i.e.
The I-magi-nation, transcending all reason. Thus, our reason, leaves us
with more questions than answers.
In the Spiral Tarot, Kay illustrates a young man kneeling on a cliff edge, before the dark abyss with awe filled face before the Holy Grail with an angel guide behind him. Thus the Womb of the Great Mother and the phallus are represented here, and the Angelic Spirit. Along with the 0 of the Fool (representing the Ain or No-Thing) there are symbols for Air, the Hebrew letter for Aleph and the symbol for the word Ox or the Green Man. Accompanying the Fool is a black cat that seems to sense the danger of the cliff edge, of which the Fool seems oblivious and fearless. The Spiral Tarot is heart felt, beautiful and has done well with a difficult topic.
Limitlessness is a very
difficult concept! To say that THE FOOL represents the initial potential
for thought which transcends reason, is about the best I can do with
The special reality we may touch in sleep, often gives us
images that do not correlate to our mundane understanding of reality, so
our dreams seem to be so much abstraction and are considered as
nonsense to our waking condition. However, the Great Work (As above so
below) involves the assimilation of The Real, not a reality conceived
of mundane ideas. And the Real Concepts are from "what is Not' making
"What is" from Dreams of Potential- Self! To think of the Universe as
"God Dreaming" (Darkness Dreaming it is Light) is very difficult to
grasp, and the fact that you are a "Lucid" Dreamer (Image of God), who
has been given the "Power of Observation and definition", meaning you can change the
Perspective of "Things", is just about as mind boggling as it
gets....and just such a glimmer of insight requires a "beyond the
Mundane" understanding of Self! Thus, your Divinity is not often
acknowledge by the prosaic assumptions of the mundane.
However, your Soul-Womb, the conception of "the
image of God", is the invisible Sephira, Daath (knowledge), which is the
Path Where Goddess (Understanding)/God (Wisdom) meet face to face ( The Tibetan-Yab
Yum) and is known as the Path of Daleth which in Tarot is THE EMPRESS, your Spiritual
Birth Mother who conceives your soul!
All the Paths leading upward to Kether,THE FOOL, THE MAGUS, AND
THE HIGH PRIESTESS, must be approached with a certain understanding of
whimsy, as we realize that by crossing the Abyss and approaching Kether
(As above, so below) means the total annihilation of Self as we perceive
it; thus presenting us with the irony of our attempt to grasp such
esoteric and refined principles from an earthly-mundane perspective.
Often,when teaching the Major Arcana and knowing what I speak, cannot
truly convey what I am saying, brings a smile, if not outright laughter
to my face. To me, The I AM potential is ironically displayed as a
Me. Being a "Me" must never be taken to seriously, for that concept will change daily, when one's personality enters the consciousness of the Higher Self.
To reiterate, THE FOOL- 0, is the initial potential for thought,
transcending all reason. Thus objectifying the Upper Regions, the
Supernal Triangle, The Dark Energy and Dark Matter, is a futile endeavor. However.once we recognize the
impossibility of consciously approaching the Highest Levels of the Tree
of Life, i.e. The Universe, in a direct manner, we are forcibly driven
into the key Principles of the Mysteries/Metaphysics of As Above, So
We begin seeing that the Below is a mirror reflection of
the Above. The Divine Spirit is all we know, we breathe it, we live
within it, it is ourselves and as fish in the Ocean cannot see water, we can not see the essence of Divinity. But unlike fish, we know this Divinity to be "the One
Energy that cannot be created nor destroyed, only transformed and transmitted", we know
that everything is of this One, as symbolized in the Tarot by THE FOOL that is the
Path of Aleph.
In this context, Aleph is attributed to Air and means Life-Breath. Just as the words Spirit and Spiral are from the Greek root word Spiro,
which means Breath. Tho One Spirit, the Holy Spirit, is then the
Life-Breath. This is well known in Eastern cultures, and Prana Yama
(Breath yoga) are a major if not primary pat of all Spiritual
development. The Sanskrit Word Prana, is the Life-Breath energy and the Sanskrit word Yama is death (inhale-exhale). Now I have
described the Magus as relating to "Words" (vibration), the underlying
sonic of patterned manifestation. However, it is the power of breath
that expels the sound. Thus THE FOOL activates THE MAGUS.
Crowley, considered Air
to be a vacuum (dark energy and dark matter), as related to THE FOOL who is the fertile Nothingness
and egg of Spirit. The universal Egg of Spirit is known,
by Qabalists, to be the EGG OF AKASHA. The zero of THE FOOL, also
represents this egg of spirit, and is the mathematical formula of ;
one Male, minus one female= 0 . Therefore, the understanding is that the
Egg of Akasha, is a fertilized ovum of undefined sexuality, but having
the potential for Both!
THE FOOL, is the very expression of the god name of Kether, Eheieh, which means I will be. This is the Divine Child as yet unborn, who is all potential and who is our very beginning!
Tiger, "fawning about" THE FOOL'S leg, is an archetype representing
the Animal Nature as related to the Higher Spiritual process. The Horns
on the figure represent those of Dionysus Zagreus, the green clothing is that of the Green Man of Spring, the grapes at his feet are a tribute to Bacchus,
the Greek God of Ecstasy, and the Crocodile (great creative energy) a
swimming at his feet in "the Nile" (Crowley quote).. Images referring to
the Godhead, are the dove of Venus and the vulture of Maat Then there
is the triple egg shape created by the caduceus in motion, symbolizing
the Ain Soph Aur (The three states of Nothing).
As you may
realize, the imagery is so subjective that I haven't the space to
detail it all for you, as if I could. If you need more detail, and you do, I would
recommend reading Crowley's BOOK OF THOTH.and 777; Robert Wang's Book: THE
QABALISTIC TAROT and investigating the Mythology of the Ancient Greeks
When THE FOOL card is thrown during a reading,
the querent is in or experiencing;
- A state of ecstasy and/or a state of
- Fearlessness. Courage. And is completing all motion
by Faith, absolutely trusting THE SPIRIT.
- A feeling of being protected,
and that everything will work out. Being open to what the future
If ill defined by accompanying cards, The Fool, is then the harbinger of folly, mania, extravagance and even negligence
Thank you for your interest and comments. May you live long and prosper.