Tarot Card Comparisons: The Thoth Tarot-Key 7: THE CHARIOT & The B.O.T.A. Tarot-Key 7: THE CHARIOT
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Thoth Tarot & comparisons

Tarot Card Comparisons: The Thoth Tarot-Key 7: THE CHARIOT & The B.O.T.A. Tarot-Key 7: THE CHARIOT

The Tarot of EliThe Thoth Tarot of the Hermetic Qabalah-Key 7: THE CHARIOT.

In the Thoth Deck Key 7-The Chariot, the Cancer Crab stands on the Knights Helm, referring to the zodiacal sign of Cancer, into which the Sun moves  at the summer solstice. Cancer is the cardinal sign of Water, shown as blue above and below the charioteer.

Hence, Cancer not only represents the first on-rush of the Tarot element water, but it also represents the Path Cheth (meaning fence or enclosure) that leads from the Great Mother Binah (understanding) to Geburah (Severity), on the Qabalistic Tree of Life. Therefore the Chariot represents the Veil of Water ( which is blood)  in which the energy of the Supernal (The Trinity) descends on the energy of mankind as Prana/Life Force and inspires the "spirit within".  This card supports the old axiom," ...The Know is in the Flow" (just as the DNA code is in the blood) and helps us realize the value of Prana Yama (Yoga breath) breathing and the flow of the Life-Fire within and/or Kundalini.

The canopy of the Charioteer, is of the sky blue, both the color of water and of the color of the Great Gnostic Sophia and/or Binah, in her Wisdom state of energy conscious.

The four pillars of the canopy, represent the 4-Pillars of the Universe while the Scarlet wheels represent the original energy of Geburah (the "cleansing menstrual blood" of the Goddess) that causes the revolving motion in the Universe.

The four Sphinxes that are drawing the Chariot, have the heads of the Four Kerubs, The Bull, The Lion, The Eagle and The Man. They actually represent the 16 sub-elements rather than just four, since in each Sphinx these elements are counter-changed (masculine/feminine).

The amber-gold armor of the Charioteer represents the sign of Cancer,  The reins are not in his hands because  he is enthroned in the Chariot rather than conducting it. Therefore the whole system is in perfect balanced and his only function is to bear the Holy Grail. This Grail looks like a  Blue and Red Chakra in his hands, as both colors represent the One Womb of the Blue Binah and the Red Geburah.

The design of the Ten Stars of Assiah sits upon his chest as an inheritance of the celestial dew of the Mother.
Cancer maybe known as the House of the Moon but Jupiter is also exalted in Cancer. This concept is illustrated as the color of  Amethyst that rings the Grail. The Shape of the Grail represents the Full Moon  and the Great Sea of Binah. Spiritual life is inferred by the radiant blood-red in the center of the Grail: light in the darkness of the Womb.

Again, studying the individual symbols will lead to a greater understanding of the whole. The Charioteer looks the masculine/animus part he is, but this card is of the Goddess as Binah and Geburah which are both receptive (female) and expressive (male). One will find that in the Gnostic Qabalah, both sexes are inseparable, where there is She (magnetic), there is He (electric) and visa versa. The Chariot also represents the mystical Merkabah; the Chariot that carries the Throne of God  in the visions of Ezekiel. The Throne is stable and unmoving, while the Chariot  descends on the revolving wheels of Geburah.
 
Arcana means secret and/or mystery and the Major Arcana (Key Cards) are deeply embedded in mysterious secrets buried in the imagery of time long past while being totally relevant today, requiring much study. " To know thyself, is to know God" describes the mystery of the Qabalah.

THE Thoth Tarot- CHARIOT Key 7, is the Path of Cheth on the Tree of Life, the word Cheth means enclosure, or fence. 
In the THIRTY TWO PATHS OF WISDOM, Paul Foster Case stated: 
"The Eighteenth Path is called the House of Influence (by greatness of whose abundance the influx of good things upon created beings is increased) and from the midst of the investigation the arcana and hidden senses are drawn forth, which dwell in its shade and which cling to it, form the cause of all causes."

Between Geburah (Severity) and  Binah (Understanding)  the Great Mother on the Tree of Life, runs the Path of Cheth. This is the highest and most profound Path on the Pillar of Severity and introduces the Personality to the Supreme Spiritual Self, that wraps our Soul in the Golden Armor of Protection so that the Psyche can be carried through the unmanifested Universe, and/or Dark Matter and Dark Energy. The Chariot is the enclosure that holds the Soul in a state of peace, as it moves through all planes.

In his BOOK OF TOKENS, Paul Foster Cases stated this about the Chariot: 
  I am the hedge of protection
                                       Enclosing the field of existence
                                        In this field thou dwellest,.
                                  And I am thy defense,
                                         Against the darkness which is without.
                                        
                                        Yet is this hedge of safety
                                          Alas a wall of limitation,
                                           And the darkness against which it defendeth thee
                                              Is the radiant Darkness of the Limitless Light.,
                                               Too brilliant for thine eyes.

The Darkness that Mr. Case refers to is that of the Limitless Light of Kether; the very pinnacle of the Supreme Spiritual Self. Pictured in the Chariot, the experience of the Spiritual Self, is known in Alchemy as  the "Exhalation", where the Alchemist becomes the Philosopher's Stone.

The Thoth Deck Chariot, shows the influences of  both the 5 Hindu Tattvas
and the biblical text of Ezekiel with its "living creatures" being represented as 4 Sphinxes pulling the Chariot. These Four Kerubim (angelic beings) represent not only the four Tarot Elements of Fire, Water, Air and Earth, but also each has four sub-elements, as do the 5 Tattvas, and are represented as the four faces of the creatures.


Geburah, is often symbolized with a Pentagram, or five pointed star, that has the Four Elements crowned by the Spirit (Space in the 5th Tattva). Thus, making 5 the number of Geburah on the Tree of Life.  Geburah is a Red Force, and is symbolized on the Thoth card as Red Wheels, meaning that the force of Geburah (Severity) is the  motive force of the Chariot.
 
Geburah is complimented by Chesed (Mercy) on the Tree of Life, and this compliment is seen in the constant usage of the number 4, Chesed's number. We have Four Sphinx, and four columns  (Four Universal Elements) holding up the starry canopy or heavens of Binah (The Great Mother- Empress Card key 3). Theses four elemental columns are called the " four columns of the Tree of Life in a Solid Sphere", adding a little more of the arcane to this card.  I suggest the curious student gets the book, THE QABALISTIC TAROT  by Robert Wang, as it is a fine text for understanding the Arcana of the Qabalistic Tarot.

Above the Golden Armored figure on the Thoth Card, is a crab, symbolizing the sign of Cancer. Woven into the canopy is the  word "ABRACADABRA", which Robert Wang thinks is an apparent pun on "ABRAHADABRA", a word that Crowley called,"one of the most important key numbers of the Liber Al...the word of the Aeon....the cypher of the Great Work which when using Qabalistic Gemtria (numerology), (Book 777 of Crowley) adds up to 418 which equals 4+1+8=13; the Key 13 Death card.
Crowley understood that when on the path of Cheth, something martial is going on in the Psyche of the Seeker themselves. Much like the Bhagavad Gita, or the Babylonian Epic of Creation,  where the pursuit of enlivenment is symbolized by warring factions.

On this highest Path of Severity, the Soul Warrior of Geburah has reached a pinnacle, as shown by the Tens stars on his golden chest that represent Assiah or Matter. Seated in meditation, with the Holy Grail in his hands: the Cup (Womb) that we look directly into. 

The  movement of the Chariot conceals a mystery (arcana) of great significance. The Chariot is reminiscent of the Greek Chariot of the Sun, Helios, as the four horses of the Sun pulled the Chariot of the Sun across the sky. This is significant as a representation, since the Chariot moves between the Light, centered in Tiphareth (Beauty) and the Supreme  Darkness of the Limitless Light at the hidden side of Kether (Crown). Yet, there is even a more complex meaning suggested here, as the Sun is guided by the Moon! And in Egyptian mythology, Greek Mythology and the Qabalistic Tree of Life, the sun is subordinate to the moon.  Since the Chariot is of the  sign of Cancer, that is ruled by the Moon (and in which Jupiter is exalted), the Charioteer follows this philosophy of subordination to the Great Mother nicely. The cardinal Path of the Moon, leads from Tiphareth (Beauty-Solar Logos) to  Kether (Crown) and is known as the Path of the High Priestess.  Water  ( Pure Consciousness) takes precedence here and is represented by the Moon.

This is a Higher Path card, and requires much sckrying, meditation, and arcane study, so this author recommends that you devote more time to this card than a brief blog. At least, get the books I have recommended in this blog and read them liberally! What is also noted here, is that the Male-Female relationship, is represented backwards here in our reflected world. The Male -"Will to Force" of the Universe is Subservient to the Female-"Will to Form" in order for electric Force to become electro-magnetic Form; Idea is subservient to Understanding, for Life to progress.
The B.O.T.A. - The Chariot key 7, represents the "Inner Self". Here, Paul Foster Case suggests that the Sphinxes represent the senses.
The Mind is the invisible reigns that he drives the Senses with; This helps us remember that our senses are driven by our thoughts, and do not denote truth of a thing.
Dr. Paul Case also suggests that the Chariot represents the body that is lead by the senses.
Advancement in understanding the metaphysical, depends on us understanding that the "outer world" is merely an illusion of our self-conscious mind. Our senses denote "how we think about a thing", rather than the truth of a thing. Our body, which depends on the senses for its artificial intelligence development, is living in an illusion of "feelings" that are generated by our thoughts about a thing.

Hence, the Golden Warrior within, must guide our bodies through the "reigning in of the senses" as Action rather than reaction. Here, the True Soul, must express itself  actively outward through the senses, rather than the senses conducting inward reactions.

The idea of protection, enclosure or fence are expressed in this cards art in a number of ways:
  1. The Hebrew letter Cheth, on bottom right of this card, means fence or palisade.
  2. The Sign of Cancer, is the Crab, an enclosed crustacean.
  3. The Chariot.
  4. The Wall in the background.
  5. The Armor of the Charioteer.
  6. The battlements and towers.

The celestial stars on the blue canopy, represent the cosmic forces that descend into matter, causing all manifestation.
On the Shield, is the symbol of the Hindu lingam-yoni, symbolizing the union of masculine will to force and the feminine will to form: the union of opposites.

The winged globe, that is above the shield, represents the Sun (globe) and the Air (wings) that it radiates through. 
On this card, the wheels represent cyclic activity (that of the Moon or goddess) or rotation.

The scepter the Charioteer is holding, is both a figure 8  and a crescent moon, representing the combined powers of the Tarot Magician and the High Priestess. 

When this card is thrown during a reading, the querent is reminded:
  • To devote themselves to the combination of activity and quietude so that they may have the drive to attain goals.
  • It is a time of clearing out the past, moving beyond and beginning with new energy while taking responsibility for one's present condition.
  • There is a need for victory here, by combining the images or content of the unconscious with the consciousness for the purpose of achievement.
  • The Chariot also signifies that the querent has begun controlling a situation by the force of their personality....a focus of Will.
  • The goal will need fighting for, but you have been granted the energy to win it!
  • Health, success, triumph, and victory. All of which shall be a combination of stillness and activity.
  • There is a principle of self mastery through change and movement towards a goal.
  • In other words, winning one's own way.
  • Self confidence that propels one to victory. 
  • In the next 7 weeks or 7 months, the querent will be making changes in their job, or home or travel,.
If the accompanying cards are ill defined, then none of the fore mentioned qualities will be stable and all will be short lived.

Thank you for your interest, comments and supportive donations. May you and yours live long and prosper!

 

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