is about the 1st law of thermodynamics (physics) "There is only one energy that cannot be created nor destroyed but only transformed."
we should understand before we get all "shivery" upon viewing this Thoth Tarot card, is that life/death are two aspects of the same
state of being. Alive is life-death, to become alive is death/life both are the destiny of energy- form in time-space. Therefore there are no
divisions in energy as all flow is between two points in time and is often symbolized by the lemniscate (Greek for Ribbon) or Mobius loop.
The Thoth Death Card, represents
the Universal Principle of Letting Go and Moving On.
As Crowley stated:
" The Universe is Change; every Change is the effect of an Act of Love: all Acts of Love contain Pure Joy. Die Daily.
Death is the apex of one curve of the snake Life: behold all opposites as necessary compliments, and rejoice."
Death is the Scorpio astrological symbol in the deck. There are three symbols of Scorpio
in the key which represent three stages of transformation and/ or
death and rebirth stages:
- The scorpion represents that part of ourselves
that is willing to protect, and move away from conditions which cause
pain and hurt.Letting go.
- The snake sheds old skin in order to rebuild
anew. This reminds us that in order to transform old identities, we must
be willing to let go of the old and move on.
- The Eagle or Phoenix, is
about vital force. of immortality and regeneration. The bird in or
nature is vital free spirit who is irrepressible and ever
- The skeleton represents the inherent body structure that
allows movement and change within our self expression as well as, it is
the "bones" of who we are and represents our ancestral lineage and our
commitment to grow and evolve through birth/death cycles.
- The Crown
represents expanded consciousness; where one has conquered the survival
mind of the animal....We know we don't survive this manifestation. We
move on to expand and liberate Life!
Death-key 13, is known as the Path of Nun on the Qabalistic Tree of Life. Nun, means, Fish
(illustrated on the card) and is also the Hebrew simple letter for Movement
(Thus the running skeleton).
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 personal consciousness into the Dark Unconscious of Universal
Origins. Such a jump into the unknown, takes courage and determination, for the consciousness appears to be extinguished in the Universal Collective Unconscious.
I liken the
consciousness to an Artificial Intelligence, and the Unconscious as the
Real Intelligence. Therefore 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 is a material.
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. Therefore, 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 will not forget "past lives". The Great Work, is Life
itself as a Wholeness-----not a divisionism of separates all trying to
prove themselves to a Creator that by the very process of creation,
had already Approve 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
The Beauty of Tiphareth, the Higher Self, is
that once you return to this aspect of Personality, you return to your
body knowing that 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 to experience the path of 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". Hopefully 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 one's consciousness is
torn down, relieved of all that is not worthy of it, as decided by the
Higher Self, and then sent back down the Tree into one's Malkuth-body
transformation. One may notice that 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! Your body is but an artifice of Spiritual Self-identity!
There is also an alchemical symbol of this Path of Nun as
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.Therefore 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 Illustrated in this 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
Again, 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 reason for the Scorpio
astrological sign attributed to Death-key13, is that Scorpio is 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
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 Original Divine Child, and I awoke as the "Will
to Be" and/or the Desire of the Great Mother of Form to continue the Great Work.
This "outer-conscious" death to the "inner-Self" 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 must still mechanically
crawl 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, 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.... by wearing the masks of man-made definitions, we've forgotten that, and thus disinherited ourselves and 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".
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 Shadow Tarot key 24-Niantiel,
is the comparable to the Thoth Death card key13 and the 24th path of Nun. Here Baron Samedi (Voodoo baron of death), the guardian of the cross roads where the worlds meet, where the dead are buried, so that they may be risen from the dead with necromantic arts of witches and sorcerers, is shown as a type of joker or jester, rather than a skeleton.
But then again, he is a she, for Lilith also represents the Guardian of this Dark Shadow Psyche-Tunnel of Niantiel.
"As Eros draws life from Thanatos, in merging with dark plutonian energies we find Transformation, regeneration, , energy, sexual power exhalation, joy, bliss."
The Shadow Tarot-Linda Falorio
"Also Asar was hidden in Amenti; and the Lords of Time swept him with the sickle of death."Aleister Crowley, Liber CCXXXI
"The 24th Tunnel is under the influence of Scorpio and sentinelled by Niantiel whose number is 160. The name of this Qlipha should be intoned in 'G' (lower register) in a manner suggestive of a bubbling cauldron of molten lava . . . "". . . depicted in the sigil of Niantiel [is] an image of Death with a five-rayed crown bearing a cross handled scythe beside the Cross of Set."Kenneth Grant, Nightside of Eden
All this wonderful dark-side image of the Tree of Life, the Qliphoth, has entities that instead of being called Sephira of the Day side Tree of Life, they are called the Qlipha.
Here the Qlipha, is the Conscious of Transformation, deep in the Collective Unconscious, at the cross roads of deconstruction and reconstruction. Nothing is wasted in this Universe of One Energy. All is just recycled, and reincarnated.
The images suggested by Linda Falorio are "scary and shivery" images suggested by our Dark Reptilian Brain, who above all things, fears death/ the unknown. She presents a nocturnal wolf like being, lapping at the blood of the "Saints", or those sacrificed to the monthly Dark Moon.
Again, we have the Dogon Nommos depicted as a fishtailed being from the Sirius system.
is a golden angel, Lilith image with goose feet and a cat' head. (depicted is a Sumerian clay tablet showing Lilith) .
Also shown, presiding over all others is the Sumerian demon "Scorpion Man"-AKRABU, thus placing the astrological sign Scorpio with this card.
From the Black temple works of Atlantean magics, to the Piscean religions that offer eternal life through death, martyrdom, etc. Linda covers as many death cults as possible on a card.
With all this Death, and terrible creatures thereof, one may forget that this is a Spiritual Transformation card, and go all demonology-creepy, thinking that some great Death Stalker Demon type, will server you and avenge you against your enemies. With such thinking, you are your worst enemy.
The Powers received that are attributed to the Niantiel Qlipha are:
- Conscious reincarnation.
- The abilities to merge with dark plutonian frequencies of energy for transformation and regeneration.
- Personal magnetism, inexhaustible energy and sexual power, joy and bliss.
The throwing of a Thoth Death Card or a Shadow Tarot- Niantiel 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
- 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
- That we are eliminating what is no longer in service.
- Giving up
your sense of self to a feeling of merging with another or The Greater Self who is both life-death.
- We are pruning and composing.
Thank you for your interest, comments and supportive donations. May you live long and prosper!