In Hermetic Qabalah, The Jungian Tarot and the Thoth Tarot,
the Fool is the most esoteric of all the Arcane. Every card in
the Tarot Deck is an aspect of THE FOOL-0, and therefore, 78 different
aspects of your Psyche, i.e. "Your wholly Spirit".
As an initiatory Qabalistic Path, THE FOOL connects Kether -1-(Crown) with Chokmah-2- (Wisdom). Hence, to the Qabalist, Kether is known as the Source of All, and Chokmah is known as Father God or God of the Covenant.
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 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 come to the minutest
glimmering of understanding about the Universe.
To even begin understanding
THE FOOL, we must entertain a multifaceted and fluid interpretation of Force and Form.
Qabalist, Paul Foster Case calls this Eleventh Path, in his text-book 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 "naught"; Light without limit which 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 (Dark Energy) which is the
possibility of vibration or motion and the First Perception of the One
having potential for activity.
In the context of Masculine sexuality,
the Fool is the Testes, that seems subjective and the Magus is the objective 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 "No-Thing"; but then, all concepts are less than the
potential for conception.
We may reason that the
potential for thought
, comes from the Dark Energy as a disturbance in the Dark Matter (The
First Material). The appearance of Thought emanates Mind, which is the
vessel for thoughtful ideas and/or Womb of Thought Forms,
I-magi-nation, transcending all reason as it was before reason. Thus, our reason, leaves us with
more questions than answers but necessarily so because we then must
build (create) the answers! As an Ocean that builds fish in itself and of itself, then flowing through the fish to instill life, thus to being able to "experience" itself, so is the One Mind and it's individual states of psyche.
Limitlessness is a very difficult concept!
To say that THE FOOL represents the initial potential for thought which
is about the best I can do with words. However, 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 base
on self-absorbed survival thinking
. 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 united "Power of Observation","unlimited creative potential", you can change the
Perspective of "Things", with or without discernment, which seems "foolish" and therefore is just about as mind boggling as it
gets! For, just such a glimmer of insight requires a "beyond the
Mundane" understanding of Self! Thus, your individual inheritance of Divinity is not often
acknowledge by the mundane; However, in the Hermetic Qabalah, your energy birth-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 (
Tibetan,Yab Yum) and is known as the Path of Daleth-THE EMPRESS, your
Spiritual Birth Mother/ Binah, the Feminine/Anima-Principle of the Divine Creative!
All the Qabalistic Tree of Life 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. It is foolish
to even think you can reasonably "think" the Divine Creative, i.e. "The All Seeing I",
for that description is not words, but rather the Action of Creation all around, in, and through you and most of creation is invisible to the human eye (I). In other words, Creation's dream is not of our creation, yet we are the creation of self, in that dream!
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, as I feel foolish to even try. To me, The I AM potential is ironically displayed as a
limited conception--a Me
. Being a "Me" must never be taken to seriously, for that concept will change daily, when one enters the Higher Self.
The Fool being the Ain, the "no thing", ratiocination must begin with the point of Tetragrammaton/Kether. Crowley summed
this up as: "The Union (Communion) of the Father and Mother produces
Twins, the son going forward to the daughter and the daughter returning
the energy to the Father; by this cycle of change the stability and
eternity of the Universe is assured." Thus, covering the entire Tree of Life/"as above so below".
Too understand this seemingly incest of union, it may be
necessary to go back through history to the Matriarchal age. It was a
time where succession was not through the first born son but through the
daughter. The King was not ruler by inheritance but rather by the right
of conquest. In the stable societies of the time, the king was a
stranger; a foreigner. He then had to kill the old king and marry the
daughter. The Anglo-Saxon word husband meant,"Keeper of her property". The Anglo-Saxon were of the old Matriarchal religions, where all form/property belonged to Woman who were also in charge of the agriculture and "owned" the grain which was stored in "grainnerees"
So the King was a care-taker or guardian of the "grainnerees".
Also, respect for the wandering
or lunatic runs high throughout history. As it still does in
India and other Asian nations. In fact a common quote in medieval times
is, "This queer stranger? Let us entreat him kindly. it may be that we
entertain an angel unawares."
Study into Percival, Mako-the son of
Set,or Sebek (crocodile god),or even Hoor-Pa-Kraat will help explain the
On the Hermetic Tree of Life,
the first is
Kether-0-, who represents the Pure Being
, which is an aspect of pure
No-thing- Force, hence, Form hasn't been invented yet. In Kether's
manifestation of the Pure Being
, he is not one but two; His divine name is Eheieh, which means I AM
(I plus Am =2) but he is only One because he is zero. One leads to
nowhere, which is where it came from. So the only possible beginning is
in Two, Kether (crown) and Chokma (Wisdom)/Force and that manifestation
must be silence because the number 3, Binah's number
(understanding-Form) has not yet been formulated. In other words, there
is no object Womb as Binah is the Virgin Mother, because Male is a Form of
Force, and no Form has yet been invented, so When Binah is impregnated
by silent Wisdom, She has not known a male! Male and Female where both
invented at the same moment when "the Twins" were born from the silent Wisdom/Understanding
impregnation, i.e. I AM Me.
Therefore with Kether and Chokma, there is impulse but
nothing else, until Binah is formed out of Understanding.
when impulse is interpreted, it becomes "The Word", or the Logos, i.e. The Womb! I could go on and on confusing you into abject despondency,
but I think this is enough to stimulate a different perspective about
The Fool -0, is not a key
card, for key cards are about doors or gateways of knowledge being
opened. Nothing has nowhere to go---so it 0. It is all the Power that
ever was or will be, and therefore is also the end, thereby also making the 0-Fool the Major Arcane 22nd card.
The design of the Thoth Fool card represents many mythological explanations of this Principle:
Thoth Deck Fool, has the horns of Dionysus Zagreus, and between them is
the phallus cone of white light---indicating the influence of
Kether-Crown, upon him.
- His background is Air, drawing from
Space and his attitude is that of one bursting unexpectedly on the
world. A good simile for Time.
- He is clad in the Green of Spring and wears the Phallic gold shoes of the Sun.
- In his right hand is the Wand tipped in a pyramid of white---simulating Kether.
- In his left hand is the flaming pine-cone, indicating vegetable growth under the same Fiery influence of the White light.
his left shoulder, hangs a bunch of bagged grapes, representing
sweetness, fertility and the basis for ecstasy (Ecstasy gave birth to
the Universe); shown by the stem of the grapes forming into rainbow
hued spirals; The form of the Universe.
- Upon this spiral
whorl are other attributions of the "godhead"; the vulture of Maut, the
dove of Venus (Mari, or Isis) and the sacred ivy of the Devotees of the
- There is also a buttery fly of many-colored air and
the winged globe with its twin-serpents, which is echoed by the twin
infants embracing on the middle spiral.
- Above is the benediction of three flowers in one (Kether, Chokmah, Binah).
- The tiger (fear) is fawning unnoticed on his leg.
- And beneath his feet runs the Nile with lotus stems and a crouching crocodile (Sebek).
The whole Fool card is a glyph of the Creative Light which is Dark Energy and unseen by the naked eye.
there are many surrounding cards of a very spiritual nature or the
position of the Fool card is thrown into a highly spiritual position in
the reading, a more mundane reading of the Fool card is often
ROBERT WANG'S JUNGIAN TAROT, is based on Carl Jung's, a Swiss psychologist (1875-1961) pioneering work in psychoanalytical movement. Jung, being a colleague of Sigmund Freud, was a creative thinker who observed correspondences between world religions, mythologies and dreams of his clients leading him to a unique overview of the human condition.
Separating him from the empirically-oriented mainstream
of academic psychology of his day, Jung's "first Principle" emphasized the reality of the psychic life. Secondly he purposed the concept of the "Universal Unconsciousness", where all individual human consciousness is linked together. Each individual mind a "small pond" which trickles into the one Ocean of psyche.
Jung calledthe third key principle
that involved the contents of the collective, the Archetypes.
These were concluded by him to be the "cultural imprints",
i.e. the images and ideas built up by mankind throughout the ages. Many of these image-concepts are known to us as "Fairy Tales" and world religions and/or the images that we imagine as gods and goddesses or the "consciousness of flora and fauna", as fairies, gnomes, elves etc.
A fourth tenet based on Jungian psychology, is that everything is based on opposites, Male and female (Anima and Animus). Therefore in the Hermetic Tarot, the Magician or Magus card represents the totality of Self, a unified potential of both male and female (electric and magnetic). Of all the 78 cards of the Tarot, The Fool is the only card that doesn't show this potential, as it is a "no-thing", representing the Ain/ or unlimited, where even the idea of Union is not known, as there are no separates and/or "other" as yet invented. From the Magus/Magician, down, all the other cards are "reflections of Self", as if shards of crystal broken from the Main Primordial Crystal. For instance, Female or the Divine Feminine, is shown as Maid, Mother, Crone and Whore. Where as male or the Divine Masculine is shown as Son, Father and Grandfather.
I can go on for days, explaining the Jungian Psychology,; However this is a blog of short duration, so let us go on to say, that by viewing/skrying anyone of the 78 tarot cards, one is observing an aspect of themselves. For each of us are a "collective of shards" from the Original Primordial Crystal. Therefore the purpose of the Tarot, Jungian or otherwise, is to "above all things, know thyself".
The Jungian Tarot-The Fool,
in order to objectify the inexplicable, shows a young man, holding the "torch of life", symbolized as a flaming rose, while stepping of into a starry sky. This starry sky implies a created universe (Transformed energy), that will be destroyed by the Panther (entropy).
The egg with a serpent around it, is the Orphic egg, in which the Universe is nurtured.
The Crown, represents that which is the unified source of All; that which directs the framework of consciousness in all levels and/or dimensions. The fruitful tree replaces the grapes on the Thoth card but still represents sweetness and fertility.
Verily, the Fool card represents the youthful aspect of Spirit. The One Energy, that embodies all potential from which all the other tarot cards/states of conscious, derive. Since the youthful aspect of Spirit, is without the experience of discernment, skrying this card will immerse one in a greater philosophical experience than that of any other tarot card. The fool is known to change shape, from young to old man, crocodile, dragon or other animal; even a ball of light or a thunderstorm; From great peace to absolute fear, for the Fool, represents the creative nature within ourselves.
To converse with the fool is to communicate with our Totality of Creative Capacity. Many often think this is a separate "being" of an "Ascended Master", but this is the illusion of separation brought on by the divisionism envision by our Theologians, Rulers, Educators etc. designed to "break off" our conscious contact with the Divine Collective; A divisionism that the Qabalistic Tree of Life circumvents.
Truth be told, we are all united in the Divine Collective, which is as us, in us, around us and beyond us. Therefore, to really experience the Fool, one must understand, "that everything I see, is another way to be me"...which the 78 tarot cards go about explaining.
The Thoth Tarot, has explained the same principles that are depicted in the Jungian Tarot, but in a more occult and Avaunt- Guard way.
Some may think that meditating on the Fool, produces nothing at all, for they seem to experience nothing. This is most absurd, for it is a sublime and far beyond our consciousness and works in the "dark". So I recommend that one view it briefly, then go on viewing the other cards , of both major arcana and minor arcana, in-depth, whereupon returning to the Fool as the last one to meditate or skry upon. Begin and end with the Fool for it is both key- O and the key- 22nd of Trump/Major Arcana.
Also, if one buys the Robert Wang Jungian Tarot, I recommend that they also buy the book by Robert Wand, Tarot Psychology.
When thrown during a reading, the Fool represents;
- Idea, thought, spirituality and that which endeavors to rise above the material world.
if the question of the querent is regarding a material event of an
ordinary life, this card is not well defined. Herein, it shows folly,
foolishness, stupidity, eccentricity and even mania.
- The Fool is too ideal and unstable to be generally good in material things.
Fool is more about a willingness to "Throw oneself into the Abyss of
the Unknown" rather than operating in a reasonable manner.
- One is in communication with their "Wholly Spirit".
Thank you for your
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