TAROT CARD COMPARISONS: The Elemental Tartot- key 13 Death/Transformation and the Thoth Tarot Key 13- Death.
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Thoth Tarot & comparisons

TAROT CARD COMPARISONS: The Elemental Tartot- key 13 Death/Transformation and the Thoth Tarot Key 13- Death.

-{Click on Death illustration for further info]
Death-key 13, is known as the Path of Nun on the Qabalistic Tree of Life. Nun, means, Fish (illustrated on the Thoth card) and is also the Hebrew simple letter for Movement. (Thus the Thoth- running skeleton).

The Qabalistic Tarot Path of Nun runs from Netzach (Victory) to Tiphareth (Beauty) on the Tree of Life, and is one of the three aforementioned paths that leads from the Personality to the Higher Self. The initiate may experience the Higher Self on any one of these Three Paths, Art (The Path of Samekh), The Devil (The Path of Ayin), and Death, the Path of Nun; but the lessons of all three must be mastered. The figures of the Art card, the Devil card and the Death card are all different aspects of the same thing; The Higher Self.

On the Path of Nun, one is literally launching the consciousness into the Dark Unconscious of Collective Universal Origins.  This takes courage and determination, for the consciousness appears to be extinguished  in the Universal Unconscious, not unlike a rain drop in the Ocean. I liken the consciousness to an Artificial Intelligence, and the Unconscious as the Real Intelligence. This artifice aids me in trusting the dissolution of my consciousness, as a transition towards re birthing it purified of illusion and deception. In fact, the word meaning of the Path of Nun, Fish, reveals the whole arcane doctrine of the Qabalah, as it is the symbol for the "first matter" that moves within the Infinite Ocean of  Unconscious-------i.e. Thought. 
The perspicacious student will note that the Tree of Life has a Path for Death, that of Nun, but seems not to have a Path for Birth: However, The Devil, Path of Ayin, enchains our Personality in Matter as it leaves the Higher Self on its journey down the Tree of Life. Thus the Devil is a card of Birth. Plus there is the fact that both Death and Birth are essentially the same transition. As one is born in visible light and/or "outer World", their "I" sight dies to the invisible or "inner world", just as the personality transitions from the outer world back into the inner world at physical death. 

The One energy Transforms itself by the process of  destruction of energy phases. From one phase to another. The Personality constructed consciousness, is indeed extinguished in the Unconscious causing a period of "forgetful sleep" before the Personality exits the Higher Self again and produces another operative artifice known as consciousness used to operate another material form. The exception to this recycling process, is when the consciousness accompanies the Personality back to the Higher Self, without needing physical death to do so. This is done when the consciousness has become discriminatory, and knows the tricks of Matter, i.e. the illusions of senses, that  the Personality experiences on the physical plane. These illusions or delusions come from the perspective of separateness and survival thinking of the physical form.
Thus, the fear of Death, must be conquered by the consciousness "that won't experience the death sleep"., that is, the consciousness that knowing transfers from body to body, by Personal Higher Self manipulation.
The Great Work, is Life itself as a Wholeness (As above so below) and not a divisionism of  separates  all trying to prove themselves to a Creator who by the very process of creation, had already approved them into being! Those who are seeking approval, a survival mechanism of the social animal, are what I call "fish in the Ocean,looking for water." and/ or "Wanna-Be's" who forgot that they already Are.

The Beauty of Tiphareth, the Higher Self, is that once you return to this aspect of Personality, you return to your body knowing you as a Personality are completely accepted and not fearing rejection in the least ( a mask of fear of death)! In other words, you "Know Thyself".

The Tarot Card- Death-key 13, is called in the many texts of the Mysteries, "The Child of the Great Transformers" and also the "Lord of the Gates of  Death"; Implying that  Nun is not the Great Transformers themselves, he is their Child. Thus Nun is not Death itself, rather Nun is the keeper of the Gateway into Transformation. Roughly, this states that the "first matter", thought, is the Gate keeper of Transformation, which is not too difficult to "wrap your head around", if you understand that how you "perceive yourself" transforms your reality.

After Traveling one of the Three Paths of the "Dark Night of the Soul", where your consciousness is torn down, relieved of all that is not worthy of you, as decided by the Higher Self,and then sent back down the Tree into your Malkuth-body  transformation, the perspectives of the Personality change from reality to the Real perspectives of the Great Work. To be an aware-sensual-Soul, rather than a socially made personality, is only possible by returning to the Higher Self....Your brain can't do the job as it is an artificial sense of self!
The Hebrew word Nun, that means Fish  which is the symbol for the First Matter which is Thought. I know that we don't often think of thought as a material, but it is a form of energy.

There is also an alchemical symbol of this Qabalistic Path of Nun, as putrefaction, which is the decaying black mass in the crucible that eventually transforms into gold and is considered a trans-formative process of turning death into new life.
The Thoth Deck card symbolizes this trans formative process as a scythe, a harvesting tool that is also a symbol for Time. Time is under the control of Saturn-Binah, the giver and destroyer of Life; Therefore illustrated on this  Thoth card is the sweeping scythe, harvesting souls, and the trans- formative bubbles of new life in its wake; all of which support this analogy of life giving and life destroying.

The skeleton is the frame work that holds the organs and can be seen as a seed of the body as the minerals that are attributed to bone are the "seeds" of organic forms.
The astrological sign attributed to Death-key13 is Scorpio, a trans- formative sign of three symbolic images, the Scorpion, the Serpent and the Eagle. Thus, we have the transformation of a  dangerous earth-crawling creature, to a serpent which symbolizes the Astral Light, weaving its way upward to become an Eagle (behind and above the figures head) that sours above all heads. All of which are represented in the Thoth Deck Tarot Card as movement. Movement being seen as change/transformation, which is the skeletal pattern of the Universe. For it is only by constant change can entropy be overcome.

The term "Dark night of the Soul" refers to the darkness of unknowing, where the psyche is striped of  the desire nature of the personality. This leaves a dreadful emptiness, almost a complete disinterest in everything. Personally, upon experiencing these Three Paths of the Dark Night, The Devil, Art and Death, there was left only a thought of despair repeating over and over again, abolishing any other desire or thought. It was, " I can't be YOU, You must be me."     The Higher Self responded to that by sending my " skeletal awareness" directly to the Great Mother Binah, who then broke down and reassembled the Personality into that of the Divine Child, and I awoke as the "Will to Be" and/or the Desire of the Great Mother of Form. This is a very hard journey to explain and it requires one not to be concerned with living or dying. One becomes a mechanical motion, pushing ahead with great faith, as Life's processes have no value, one still mechanically crawls towards the Higher Self. Moving forward in a total darkness, inch by inch, the Soul (Psyche) begins the process of "putrefaction", believing, but not always so sure, that there will be light that will eventually appear and lead the way. It was a Red dot of light that appeared to me out of indescribable darkness....The Great Red Binah. the purifying Force of resurrection, Bathed me in her blood, Loved me (indescribable ecstasy)  and sent me back down the Tree into Tiphareth and the Fiery Light of the Higher Self.  Once a Divine Child always a Divine Child....somehow we've forgotten that, and thus disinherited ourselves/ our personality, from the Macrocosm.

The term "Dark Night of the Soul" was first coined by St. John of the Cross where he said."...although this happy night brings darkness to the spirit, it does so only to give it light in everything; and that, although it humbles it and makes it miserable, it does so only to exalt it and to raise it up; although it impoverishes it and empties it of all natural affection and attachment, it does so only that it may enable it to stretch forward, divinely, and thus to have fruition and experience all things, both above and below...."  Upon conquering the Path of Nun, the Soul is reconstructed as the Personality of the Higher Self, and the emptied brain is filled with the Primary Imagination...The will to form and the Understanding of the Great "Womb with a view".
Mars rules Scorpio. Scorpio rules the sex organs.  Thus this Death Card, represents a Sexual energy, a reproductive energy which is consciously directed in a physical exercises such as  that of Tantra, or that of  Crowley's Middle Pillar, an activity best represented by Crowley's Death Card. The initiate is now following the "Path of the Flaming Sword" , which is both destructive and constructive and not for the weak of character. or for those who fear death, as shown by trying to dominate others.
The Elemental Tarot key 13 Death/Transformation, is more mundane in its usage of symbol. The Death form is faceless, holding an Ankh, the symbol of infinity. The Winged Serpent (force) is the Divine sexual energy of birth/death/rebirth, as a serpent sheds its old skin (personality) and becomes renewed. 
New shoots of greenery sprout up from around the figure of "old Sam", declaring new birth after death.
A human figure in the background, is running in the gray atmosphere of fear and confusion, trying to escape death.

The Gnostic Text quote from The Thunder, the Perfect Mind,  (from the book-The Nag Hammadi Library-see past blogs) that borders this Elemental Tarot card states that: "I Am the one whom they call life and the one whom you call death"; a channeled quote from the Greek Goddess Sophia (meaning Wisdom). Life and Death are one and the same, neither one has an end, only a Whole cycle is preformed.

The Death Card, during a reading, suggests:
  • Time, Age and transformation. Rarely does it symbolize physical death and only if borne out by the accompanying cards.
  • For the Querent, this is the Principle of letting go, and moving on.
  • A rebirth out of Old conditions.
  •  A type of transitional metamorphosis which destroys the something old to build the something new.
  •  A Realization of Life Power as it is released from past confines and revitalized by change and regeneration.
  • A moment of great Spiritual Transformation.
Thank you for your interest, comments and generous donations. May you live long and prosper!

2 Comments to TAROT CARD COMPARISONS: The Elemental Tartot- key 13 Death/Transformation and the Thoth Tarot Key 13- Death. :

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dbr on Monday, October 27, 2014 12:30 PM
can you elucidate on the number 13 and its esoteric significance?
Reply to comment
Eli on Wednesday, October 29, 2014 12:09 PM
Be glad to, although this is too restrictive of a space to cover it all. Esoterically the number 13 is reduced by gematria to 1+3=4, which is Tetragrammaton- the whole name of God. (See past blogs). Medieval scholars found that there are numerical links between words, thus gematria. 1 is Kether, 3 is Binah, together they are 4, the Whole, unbreakable, unshakeable name of the Divine Creative-Tetragrammaton. 4 also is the number of Daleth-Door. Which symbolizes the exit from one place to the entry into another. Thus the death card. One finds that 3-Binah is the Divine Formative, who is in charge of all doors, as she is a Womb/Door into and out of the Supernal Triangle. The number 13 became a fear ridden number by the superstitious, who feared deaths door, because of guilty consciousness...all they ever have to do is treat another as they wished to be treated to stride fearlessly into the unknown. Thank you for your interest. May you live long and prosper.

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