The Thoth Key 4-The Emperor: The Principle of personal power and leadership
Emperor of the Hermetic Qabalah, symbolizes the totality of the universal element of fire.
Aries, the Ram, behind the Emperor, is the fire sign and represents exploration, adventure, curiosity, and initiative.
The sun rises behind the
Emperor, as a symbol of the natural source of light. He is the animus--
masculine energy, Zeus, of Greek Mythology or Marduk of Sumerian, who is the father or patriarch. In the Orient, he is the yang
energy, which represents dynamic, initiatory power.
He is the Electric Father Zeus who casts about his Lightnings and therefore the first ejaculation of Life.
The bees on the cloak
symbolize shows that he realizes that all leadership requires vision
. The Fleur-de-lis,
the three-petaled flowers on the bottom of this card, represent royalty and effective leadership that requires heart, mind and spirit in flowing balance.
In Shamanic and/or ancient societies, the essence of spirit has been symbolized as Fiery Energy.
THE EMPEROR, is the Qabalistic Path of Heh on the Tree of Life
and its function is determined by Binah who is pure fruition. Therefore, if placed next to the Key 3: The Empress card, you will see that they are "face to face" (Yab Yum-in Tibetan Tantra).
The Thoth Emperor-Key 4 of the Major Arcana:
is assigned both Mars and
The Hebrew letter, Tzaddi,
refers to the sign of
Aries in the Zodiac and the ruler of Aries which is Mars. The resulting
combination exalts the Sun. All of which implies that Aries and Mars are a combination of energy in its most material form with the idea of
Authority, i.e. electricity.
The Thoth Deck Emperor is illustrated as an imperial figure bedecked with crown and imperial vestments.
- His throne shows capitals that are representative of Himalayan Ram heads which also represent Aries the Ram.
conchant lamb and upright flag at his feet represent his domesticated
attribution on the lower planes. As is noticed in both government (the
flag) and Rams, if untamed they both are wild and courageous, lonely in
lonely places, whereas when tame they both are made to lie down in
green pastures becoming docile and cowardly.
The Emperor also represents the alchemical chemical
as shown by his posed head and arms forming a triangle; below crossed
legs form the cross, making a complete sigil of the alchemical sulfur.
In the Gnosis of Alchemy, Sulfur is the male creative fiery energy of
the Universe and corresponds to the Qabalistic Fiery- swift creative
energy; the initiative of all Being.
The Bee and
both support the Imperial image as ancient signs of
imperial power. The quality of this power is prone to sudden, violent
but impermanent activity, so this fiery power must not persist for too
long or it burns and destroys. Therefore there is a caveat to the Emperors Fire: If one disturbs the bee hive, all hell breaks loose, such is the Emperor when disturbed by fear based emotions.
The Rams head septure
is a obvious continuance of authority and Aries. The Orb with the
Maltese cross and the Aries septure imply that his authority and
power are now established governance. The shield at his feet, represents
the two headed eagle crowned with a crimson disk which is symbolic of
the Alchemist's red tincture or the nature of gold. The golden eagle,
the Sun, is consort to the white eagle, the moon, silver, of the
In the final observation of this card's symbology, the
white light descending upon his imperial head is Chokma and symbolizes Chokmah's
authority of creative wisdom, the Logos, and is exerted upon Tiphareth
(Beauty), the organized man build of the Whole Soul Collective. This
makes sense, if you understand that Beauty is a perfect organization of
opposites... a Jungian synchronicity.
The Path of Heh (The Emperor)
is a formative path of the Hermetic Qabalah that represents the rational and classifying activities of the consciousness. It's
bright Red color is that of Binah (The Great Mother) in the World of
Pure Spirit known as Atziluth.
Albeit, that the male and female forces
are seen as more interwoven in the lower levels as we go down the Tree
of Life, the assumption that Chokmah and Binah are the only "Pure"
states of Male and Female force is in error; as Chokmah (Wisdom),
meaning the primary quality of maleness, is a female noun. Taking the
point of view that whatever gives birth is exercising a primary female
quality at the moment of birth, then all that is inherent in the
male is inherent in the female and visa verse. We can see this by
understanding that the Creation of Chokmah, gave birth to maleness, and femaleness. Thus relegating action to masculine- will to force and receptiveness to feminine-will to form. Remember, where there is Electricity, there is Magnetism.
The students of Carl Jung
know that he stated: " Themale harbors the perfect female image in his unconscious, as the female harbors the perfect male image in her unconscious
these being the "counter sexual component" necessary for the
transformation of force and form. Jung also called the "counter-sexual
components", the Anima
(female) in males and the Animus
(Male) male in females. The Anima, means spirit
in Latin and the Animus is Latin for soul.
Thus we can see that THE EMPRESS is
Anima/Spirit (oval egg: Magnetic of One energy) and THE EMPEROR is
Animus -Soul (Spiral linear energy : Electric of One Energy), making the
perfectly developed male type on the Paths THE EMPEROR and the
perfectly developed female type, THE EMPRESS. These are the pure
that we meet and actually converse with on the Paths.
If we think of the One Energy as a Human Brain (Tree of Life), albeit a
simplistic objective comparison, then One has become two, female and
male in One Intelligent organism (The Tree of Life) on the Path of Heh.
the Sun of Tiphareth is in the sign of Arie
s, which is also the sign of
This Path, indicates that THE EMPEROR exercises some control over the
Solar forces of the Higher Self.
Thus, we have the term that Dr. Paul Foster Case gave this Hermetic Path of Heh; The Constituting Intelligence
meaning that THE EMPEROR assists in the building up of the Linear Light
of Tiphareth from the utter-darkness of Limitless Light of the Supernal
Triangle (The upper Triangle of the Tree of Life). This Path of Heh, could also be considered
as the "start of Time" in infinity. In the Thoth Deck card, this
importance of Tiphareth to THE EMPEROR is illustrated by the Sun behind
his head and the overall two colored scheme of Martian reds and Sun
yellows. These two colors also suggest a furious/"divine frenzied" rush
of often short-lived linear activity, such as lightning.
In the Sepher Yetzirah (Qabalistic text) the letter Heh is a simple word meaning, sight or window.
This is well represented in THE EMPEROR, since he is the "Fiery Aspect
of the Garden of Eden" of which the Higher Self relates as a
Self-observation of the One and/or the origin of "I Am". It is the first
path that is attributed to a function, suggesting that "I" sight (identity) is the
first of the senses, as Aries is the first sign of the Zodiac.
Therefore this Path of Heh, THE EMPEROR, is what I call the First "I"
sight, while the EMPRESS is the "Am" of understanding (an inner sight I
call a "Womb with a view"). Together they are the "I AM"; the Counter
Sexuality of the One Mind/Energy.
All this word
manipulation contributes to the understanding that the Constituting
Intelligence is the first phase of a natural cycle, such as Aries bringing forth Spring. This understanding is shown as the lamb at the Thoth
Emperor's feet and the Ram headed wand. Again, Paternal Power is shown by the
bees and Fleur de Lys. The two headed Eagle in front of a crimson
disc that is on the Emperor's shield, symbolizes the Alchemist's red
tincture related to the Sun and Gold. There is a similar eagle on THE
EMPRESS card that refers to the Moon and Silver.
The study of
these mythological gods, will give great metaphorical-spiritual and sexual insight to
the diligent student about the necessary combinations of masculine electric
and feminine magnetic force and how the magnetic is within the electric, and the electric is in the magnetic . This knowledge is essential for the practice of invoking magick manifestations.
The B.O.T.A. Tarot-Key 4: The Emperor, is also representative of the knowledge of the Hermetic Qabalah, as are all B.O.T.A.cards.
Hence, the fundamental principle of the Emperor card is: Reason. Reason is the part of consciousness that oversees and controls, justifying it's title as Emperor.
Vision(Hebrew letter Heh, meaning window, shown on bottom right of card), which is considered feminine/Empress, is also associated with this card, as it has a close intercourse with reason, as "insight" or mental vision.
- The Orange back ground of this card is about the "Reflected Light" of physical sight; physical sight being another meaning of this card.
- The mountains represent Aries and/or the fiery activity of Mars. The Ram of Aries is also shown on his shoulder and the cubed throne. Mars is represented by the steel armor of the Emperor.
- The 12 golden points on the Emperor's helm, represent the Zodiac of Astrology.
- The mundane symbol of dominion is represented as the globe.
- The globe and cross, like the circle and Tau of the Emperor's sceptre, represent the feminine (magnetic) and the masculine (electric) potencies of the radiant mental energy and/or Life-Force (Sex energy).
- The purple flaps over his armor symbolize the "Royal Purple".
When The Emperor card, key -4, is thrown during a reading, it implies:
- War, strife, conquest, victory and ambition; all the martial arts.
these traits aren't always destructive as the Emperor also implies,
personal power and leadership; power from insight, possessing a global
sense of issues and serving those around you.
- The character
of the Emperor is Patriarchal, which could also implies that the
querent is up against an angry patriarchal structure of some kind, which
includes rigidity and maybe even nastiness.
confrontation with authority or even with some part of ones self which
is feeling rigid and afraid. Interpretations of which depend on the
dignity of the accompanying cards.
- It mirrors to one, one's own creativity, leadership and able responsibility.
the element of fire, one is warm, nurturing, electric, dynamic and
vital in those activities that appeal to one as well as challenge one.
is an important symbol to meditate on in order to visually implant a
model of how to use power and leadership in ways that expand and
liberate one's self and others from self-perceived weaknesses and
becoming an actively divine creative force.
For the student of "The Higher Magick", the septure in the Emperor's right hand also represents:
- The Lightning-
Phallus of Shiva, giving rise to the Tarot Wand. This was originally
the Trident (ternary Phallic symbol of Father, Son and Holy Ghost) born
by the Western gods, Neptune, Jupiter, Hades, Poseidon, Pluto and
Lucifer. Also the Trident was associated with Osiris and later on, to
the Guardian of the Holy Graäl.
- The Principle of Personal Power and Leadership.
a pure base of Knowledge while remaining open minded, pointing towards
success, authority, stability and ambition in gain or achievement.
- Self realization of Life Force and Personal Power as Anima and Animus in perfect communion.
ill defined by attending cards: the querent is up against a dominant
boss, or authority figure (s) who sets rules, boundaries, definitions
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