Tarot Card Comparisons: The Thoth, Key 19- The Sun & The Babylonian Tarot, Key 19, The Sun/Shamash
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Thoth Tarot & comparisons

Tarot Card Comparisons: The Thoth, Key 19- The Sun & The Babylonian Tarot, Key 19, The Sun/Shamash

The Tarot of EliThoth, Key19-The Sun: The Path of Resh.
* Color:Orange
*Musical Note: D- Natural
*Planet: Sun
*Meaning: Head
* Double letter (Hebrew) Fertility-Barrenness
* Qabalistic esoteric title: The Lord of the Fire of the World.
From the Thirty Two Paths of Wisdom, Paul Foster Cases called The Thirtieth Path, The Collecting Intelligence. He stated it is so-called because Astrologers deduce from it the judgment of the Stars, and of the celestial signs, and the perfections of their science, according to the rules of their resolutions.
(The Path of Resh is the path from the circle #8-Hod at a down angle to circle #9-Yesod)

The Path of Resh connects Splendor (Hod) with Foundation (Yesod) and is the first of the Paths of the Personality Triad to be encountered in upward motion on the Tree.

As the active Path of the  intellectual formative side, it is the activating force of the Personality which is  an "image of the High Self" since it is composed of both Male-electric-dynamic ("masculine-intuitive-dynamic, Yod) and female-formative-magnetic  (intellectual-formative, Heh) and a harmony of energy frequencies from the union of the two opposites which is known as the equilibrating, Vau.

The Sun, Key 19, in the Qabalistic Thoth Tarot deck is considered the "Collecting Intelligence", meaning that it exercises control over many different components which is seen as the:
  1. 12 signs of the Zodiac, in this case symbolized by the 12 rays of light emanating from the Sun.
  2. The Masculine and Feminine polarities are represented as the flying angelic forms.
  3. The Zodiacal signs are considered to be the 12 guide posts of Personality and receptacles of Planetary influences, one of which governs the birth and life course of each incarnation.
  4. The Sun is not only central to today's incarnation but also acts as a link between the Personalities which have been experienced in other incarnations.
  5. The collecting of the Sun also encompasses all the component parts of the Personality, discovered on these lower Paths, that are here infused with the dual action of the Sun (light and warmth).
  6. To initiates, light and warmth are considered to be intellectual qualities. The Path of The Sun is intellectual and is the highest level of the human intellect ( The Star is the highest level of emotions).
  7. The Sun is also The Son who carries on the work of the Father. The Sun is the introduction to the inner sun which is the light of the Personality, just as the physical sun is the light of the material world.
  8. What must be noted here, is that definite physical-chemical changes happen to those who successfully work on the Paths.  In his study course, The Thirty Two Paths of Wisdom, Paul Foster Case states that:...marked inner differences from the average person are due to psychological contrasts to the mental states of ordinary human beings, but they are also the outer signs of organic changes inside the skin of the new creature. He is chemically and structurally unlike genus homo.  There are different constituents in his (her) blood stream. Through the nervous system and in the brain, and glands related to them, function differently in the body of an adept from the way they do in the bodies of the greater number of his (her)contemporaries.

In order to update the language I placed the word her in parentheses but it is also important to note that these "marked inner differences" also cause the "magic abilities" of the psychic and/or the "healing semen of the anointed" (Son-Light) in Tantric practice. 

When we travel The Path of Resh upwards, we return to this point of new innocence. It is quite literally "a growing younger" process of birth backwards until we reach a stage where there is some recollection of the Source from which we emerge.

It's also important to note that the Personality we came as Spirit/Soul to build, is an expansion and liberation of the Animal consciousness to a state of "Angelic conscious". We came to elevate matter and its survival mind to that of the Universal Thought of The Divine Collective Unconscious.  Therefore the Sun card is the symbol of the genus homo-sapient-sapiens.

You may notice the "Dancing Twins" as show on this card before they were called the "Sons of Seth" or the "Daughters of Seth"  we may have known them as --the Twin aspects of the Goddess / God and/or The Divine Creative. The Fiery Spirit or Spiral Energy of Masculine and the Magnetic- Formative Sophia (Goddess of Wisdom) feminine side. Their arms cross to represent the Union of these Divine States of Intellect and Energy (in Tibetan Tantric Image they would be in Yab Yum or "Sexual Union") that must be established to "Collect" all the necessary Forces in order to establish a Intellectual and living Being.

The Sun/Resh Path is intellectual, and THE SUN represents the highest form of human intellect which is both  a balance of Masculine and Feminine conscious energy. So in a physical representation, when both the Left and Right side of the brain are in equilibrium with the Solar Forces (Kundalini) within the body, we are at our most advanced state of Personality. This is a profound union of the Personality with the Inner Sun where there is a deep physical inner feeling of Warmth and Light not unlike the external feeling of warmth and light a sun bather may experience and as the Sun. Also, like the physical sun, you cannot look directly into the "inner sun" with out suffering damage/ or physical change. Reminding us of the opposites of the Sun, that it is both the harbinger of fertility and  barrenness, both of which are the Double Letter meaning of the word Resh.

As a symbol of Resh, the human head is represented, which is our Collective Intelligence. The Path of Resh is an initiation of the Personality to the Great Source of Inner Light which takes place in the material body that affects the dual components of the Lower Self (Chemical and Intellectual). The Adept knows that the component parts of the Personality (Lower Paths on the Tree of Life) function through the body as an  experience-collecting vehicle for the Spirit. The human body is an important Crucible for the Alchemical union of Higher and Lower Self communion. Therefore, the Physical body is a Sacred Place; our temple, our forge, where ideas are forged into artistic-intimate-sensual-presence and where Male and Female are not divided into a purely errant "Battle of the Sexes" as proposed by the "Divide and Conquer" indoctrination of divisionism!

Remember "God creates what God wants!" This is a Hermaphroditic path, where we return to the innocence of a child  and as we travel upwards this Path of Resh (activating all of our energy centers), our Personality grows younger, innocent and sees with Wonder rather than the critical eyes of the good and bad Pavlovian domesticated and divided-personality of  the Adult. We begin seeing What God Sees!

Tiphareth is the Central Sun (Son) of the physical microcosm and connects us to the Dark Sun (limitless light-Father) of the Macrocosm and the Path of Resh begins us on the Journey to Central Sun-of God, within. There is much to study about this card, Cain an Able ( bareness and fertility), the Dragon-faced-Men, Sons of Seth, Daughters of Seth and the Christ who Didymos Judas Thomas in the Gnostic Gospels quoted as saying"....I am the honeymoon suite." and much more!

The Hexagram is the symbol of the composite Thirtieth Path which is  compressed of the Four Elements, the Signs of the Zodiac, and the Planets, all under the Ruler ship of the Sun. Thus, the Hexagram is the symbol of the perfect integration of Personality and Higher Self  (Tiphareth -meaning Beauty).

The Sun is also called the "Splendor of the Material World", as it connects Yesod-Foundation to Hod-Splendor, and is basically representative of the intellect acting upon the dual human condition of, consciousness and the physical body. Thus, the Sun is a point of connection with the Greater Life that is comprised by balancing the human-Microcosmic intellect with the Higher Macrocosmic Intellect that is the "Sun (Son) of God".

For the initiate, experiencing the Path of  Resh, is very profound as it is the introduction to the inner sun, which is the nurturing light of the personality, as the outer sun is the nurturing light of the physical world.  As before stated, while experiencing the warmth and light of this inner sun, one's personality cannot look directly into this Solar intelligence, anymore than they can at the physical sun, without suffering transformation. As shown by The Tower Card;  equilibrium will be reached by "burning away" what is unworthy of the Higher Personality.

As I have said before, working on the Paths brings about definite physio-chemical changes in the human body and as one of the most noted teachers of the Hermetic Qabalah, Paul Foster Case has stated in his study course, The Thirty-Two Paths of Wisdom. This is the same physio-chemical change that happens to adepts in the Tantric Arts, yoga, or metaphysical alchemy, where balanced Divine Male and Divine Female energy opens up the Divya Sidhis or magic abilities.

The Qabalist always bears in mind that the Personality, the component parts of which are represented on these lower Paths of the Tree of Life, functions through the body as an discriminating-experience-collecting vehicle for the Soul/Spirit.  To divorce the body from the Spirit is a most serious mistake of divisionism, for then we are mentally and thus physically divorcing ourselves from the very Powers that created the body and the Soul's very need of mental discrimination! Immortals can't discriminate as they have not end or beginning to see! The Mortal body, has sense to define limits, that can be examined and then experienced, allowing the Psyche to discriminate between what is or what is not Life expanding and liberating! The body is the crucible of the Soul Alchemist, and the Sun is not only an important symbol, it is also the Spiritual furnace heat that is the alchemical process of turning the lead of unworthy thought into the gold of Higher Mind.

The Lower Paths on the Tree of Life, Tau, Shin and Resh, ( The Universe, The Aeon, The Sun-), are the symbols of the component parts of the Personality which function through the body-vehicle, as Spirit's experience-collecting apparatus. The Higher Self must function through the Personality if it is to influence the physical plane, as Pure Spirit must function through the Higher Self and the physical body to establish "Whole Shelf".  The fact that we perceive separation between these aspects of One, is to necessitate understanding of each of the components that are in a state of infinite  connectivity. The Tree of Life does describe, by its pattern, a degree of separation, as Sephiroth, but the Paths show us they are all connected and that the perception of separation is to expedite understanding of a dimension of conscious energy.

Perception, is noted for its wide varieties from one organism to another, so it is up to each individual student to literally create their own Qabalah. The Path of Resh is crucial in developing the individual Qabalah. Upon journeying this Path of  The Collective Intelligence, one will receive the imprint and acceptance of "Spirit guides, or those beings  who direct the inner learning experience of the student.  On the Path of Resh (head) the candidacy for Tiphareth
(Beauty), The Conscious of the Son (Sun), and /or Higher Self, is begun.

Therefore the Path leading into Hod, is where inner discoveries are made as the Inner Teachers exert their influence on the material world, clarifying the relationship between mind and body.
The Path of Resh, will help the student understand the control and limitations of intellect. The Path of the Sun, is also the path of  "awakening", that helps the student understand the use of the tremendous "Sexual Force" of Yesod (Foundation) that is known as the "secret" or Arcane force manipulated by the initiate of the Mysteries. This force has many names, such as "Serpent Force", Kundalini, or "Life Force", all of which fall short in proper perception, as most definitions do. This force must be experienced to be understood, and proper preparation for its "rising" must be made by experiencing of the Perceptual Intelligence on the Path of Shin (The Aeon).

Yesod, Foundation, or Yesodic/Kundalini energy, is attributed to the Moon which governs the ebbing and flowing of the Astral Light (Akashic Fluid) and is the sexuality beneath our material existence.
Hod is Mercury, the first similarity of the specific Personality. Therefore, the Personality is hermaphroditic, as male and female qualities have yet to be separated out as specifics. The Path of the Sun, when considered  developmentally, is the point of childhood of the emerging Personality as it builds toward an earthly incarnation. By traveling upward, towards Hod, we are once again experiencing this initial innocence, a kind of re experiencing youth and/or a rebirth. The initiate reaches a stage where there is some recollection of the Source from which we emerged.

The  dancing Twins, on the Thoth Deck Sun card, symbolize the purest-innocent repression of the electric-male (Earth) and the magnetic female (Water) principles in physical manifestation. These Twins are also a reference to the astrological sign of Gemini, the sign that links Taurus (Earth) and Cancer (Water).  The ancient Greeks and Romans also referred the sign Gemini, to Apollo and the Sun.

In the Thoth Deck Sun card, the green mound beneath the Twins, symbolizes fertility, as its shape shows aspiration to the Higher Self. The Children dance, free from enclosure, symbolizing freedom from the "prejudices of the people that date morally from the about 25,00 B.C." [Crowley] 

On Crowley's Thoth, Key 19, the Sun, is the Rose-Cross expanded from four arms to 12 rays and embracing the whole of creation in its rays.
This expanded "Inner Sun" is felt by the initiate, as a very warm rising, fertile power, that does change the physiology of the physical form into the "Master's Body".

The Babylonian Tarot, Key 19, The Sun/Shamash depicts the Sumerian  sun-god, Utu, who later became the Babylonian sun-god,Shamash.  Presented here, Shamash is standing on his totem animal, the horse, while wielding his implement, a pruning saw ( cuts away unwanted identities in the personality), radiating rays of light from his shoulders, as the Solar Discs rises up between two peaks. Shamash is the older brother of Adad, the Weather god. Therefore representing the Brothers Cain and Able, (Crowley's suggestion on the Thoth card) on the Solar card.

Shamash represents all the characteristics of the Sun Card, in any deck, as he is the Sumero-Babylonian god of justice, governed virtue, laws, oracles, courage, victory, moral force, judgment and retribution. As in the Solar Logos (Christ/Buddha consciousness) , Shamash's brilliant Sun/Son light, gave warmth, illumination, and fertility. Because of this brilliant sun light, "all things were revealed" to him, making him the arbitrator of Justice, who rewarded the virtuous and punished the wicked.
To carry on this tradition of "Twins dancing in the Sun", Shamash and his companion, the goddess Aya, had two children (minor deities) that attended him : his daughter Misaru (justice) and his son "righteousness", Kittu. Therefore Shamash was a  compassionate "law and order" god. He also bore the titles of "illuminator of the regions", "Lord of living creatures", "king of judgement" and " god of the day". He appears in a number of Sumerian and Babylonian stories, the Epic of Gilgamesh, and the story of Etana and the Eagle, to name a couple.

When The Sun, Key 19 thrown during a reading:
  • The querent shall experience gain, riches, glory and sometimes  be called arrogant which is often a misunderstanding of their glowing self-confidence.
  •  The querent might make great displays of  vanity  but this is only seen  when accompanied by very negative cards.
  • It generally means Gain, Glory and riches all of the Fertility side.
  • Birth and renewal of the personality.
  • Achievement against the odds.
  • Vindication of daring ideas.
Thank you for your interest and comments. Those attending Wednesday night, "Everything Qaballah class" are in for a Power Filled night (see web site for details)---new attendees welcome. Thank you for your interest, comments and supportive donations. May you live long and prosper!

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