Tarot Card Comparisons: The Thoth Tarot- 4 of Cups: LUXURY & The B.O.T.A. Tarot- 4 of Cups
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Thoth Tarot & comparisons

Tarot Card Comparisons: The Thoth Tarot- 4 of Cups: LUXURY & The B.O.T.A. Tarot- 4 of Cups

The Tarot of EliThe Thoth Deck Four of Cups-Luxury, sounds very good. In fact it is Chesed (Mercy) in the Realm of Water. Chesed, the 4th Sephiroth on the Qabalistic Tree of Life, being Fiery in nature, means the Luxury of Warm Water, impassioned bright emotions etc. but as we know, warm water cools eventually, and that  even today's luxury car, is used and grows old tomorrow. 

Chokma (Wisdom), the second Sephiroth on the Tree of Life, is really the energy of of the 4 the Sephira-Chesed, which is called the intelligence of Mercy but as Chesed is below the Abyss, this makes Mercy unbalanced. Hence,
4, contrary to its pattern, is an unstable number for even in the Naples Arrangement (click to link to explanation) it is impossible to construct a "Magic Square" using four cells.

In the Hermetic Qabalah and Tarot, the Fours represent solidification and manifestation and are attributed to Chesed (mercy). The fours are "below the Abyss" and express the Rule of Law (Laws of Physics etc.). The Four is a very solid number as it has dominating influence on all the cards.

The Four of Cups-Luxury refers to the Moon in Cancer which is the Moon's own House; but Cancer is so placed that it implies a certain weakness known as abandonment to desire.
  1. The Four of Cups-Luxury, is watery, and thus less concise, there is a natural weakness in water (to take on the impurities of its environment) that threatens its purity; it is not quite strong enough to control itself properly. This makes Luxury a little unstable as the process of satisfaction has made it impure. The Luxury here is thus known to be fleeting.

Although the fours are a balanced solid, and show a good foundation, the Four of Cups is the "weakest" card of the Fours. This is because of the nature of satisfaction gained from luxury; it doesn't last long as satisfaction is very emotional in nature and is disturbed by the environment around it. Dissatisfaction, soon rears its dark head, and the pleasure seeker must seek more luxury; something new. This is a emotional dysfunction known as the world of Neti Neti, which is Sanskrit for "not this, not that"; a world where a person looks outside of themselves seeking  satisfaction and happiness.

In the Thoth Deck Four of Cups, the sea of Binah (Great Mother) is still being shown, but it is ruffled with waves and thus the Four cups standing upon it are unstable. The single Lotus bloom has multiple stems, emphasizing individuality---which weakens the whole flow of power as individuals are not necessarily in sympathy with one another and therefore lack a strong group support.


Again, The Four of Cups-Luxury refers to the Moon in Cancer which is the Moon's own House; but Cancer is so placed that it implies a certain weakness known as abandonment to desire.

 Here the Pure Water/ Emotion of the Supernal Triangle has passed through the Abyss to Chesed (Mercy) and although ordered, balanced, or stabilized, it has lost the purity of its conception. You might say, that instead of pure energy in motion, it is now an emotional idea held in conceptional confinement.
Being that the Moon is in her own house in  Cancer one would think it was well placed. However,  Cancer is so placed that this implies a certain weakness, a abandonment to desire. Which reminds me of the statement made by the boxing champ Mike Tyson:" Everybody has a plan until they get hit".

The calm Sea (Unconsciousness) of the 3 of cups is still present in the 4, but slightly ruffled, implying a disturbance is building, implying that the Four Cups standing on it are becoming less stable. The Thoth Image implies that the Spirit of the Lotus, the Dryad, has gathered strength, growing multiple stems, supporting one Lotus Blossom, spewing forth water. The Four stems, are the number of manifestation of the Dryad, who is also secretly preparing catastrophe by emphasizing individuality rather than the same action for all four.

By understanding that the number Four is an "awkward" number; alone among the natural numbers, as it is impossible to construct a "Magic Square" of four cells. Four being a "dead stop" number, a different idea of Order is necessary to carry on the series. Thus, for now everything is seemingly luxurious in stability, but the Changing of the Moon, its waxing and waning, is such that this won't last, i.e., the "hit" is on its way.

Since the element-water represents emotion (Energy in Motion) and since energy is kept pure by constantly moving, the damning effort of the number four, will fail. Change is the formula for motion.  (Change=Stability). Four is the number of restriction, as in "Four walls" etc, and as a cage, it shows a certain amount of stability, until the energy gets "tired" of confinement.  We all know the weakness of putrefaction in stable  water; it must keep moving to stay pure or become a stagnant swamp of confined and sluggish motion. Therefore, the solidification and manifestation of a thing stops change, which is a universal constant. The ordered solid, will soon begin degrading, so that the matter shall once again transform, keeping  with the Universal constant. That is another reason why in order to keep a luxuriant life style, one must continually pump energy and money into it in order to keep it: usually exponentially. 

The B.O.T.A. Tarot, 4 of Cups, depicts 4 silver and blue cups arranged in a square. However, the image is deceiving as the Upper 2 are merely being reflected as the lower 2. Implying a loss of "purity", since mere reflections lack the purity of the original. Implying that stability is an illusion.
There are no other implications of the illusion of luxury on or in this card. Again, the Thoth Tarot of the Hermetic Qabalah,  explains this B.O.T.A. minor arcane card.






When the 4 of Cups card is thrown during a reading, it represents:
  • The querent will be or is experiencing pleasure from luxury, but with some slight discomfort and anxieties.
  • The querent is experiencing a stationary period in happiness which may or may not continue as long as desired.
  • It is too passive a symbol to represent complete happiness and some drawbacks to pleasure are implied. 
  • There is both acquisition and contention in this card. It is not wrong to enjoy the luxury of your labors, but labor will soon have to begin again with even a greater intensity,  or you will lose it. 
  • This card warns us not to get lost in desire.
  • Slight discomfort and anxieties over receiving luxury.
  •  The Luxury of blended pleasure and success approaching their end.
  • Yet this is a stationary period of happiness that may not continue as long as wished, as it is too passive of a symbol to represent perfectly complete happiness.
  • Nor does it suggest love and marriage as powerfully as the Three of Cups-Love.
  • Some drawbacks to luxury are implied, such as contention with acquisition and sometimes injustice.
  • It is a gentle passive card like warm water; Feels good for the moment, but that moment soon cools.
  • This card cautions us not to "sit long on our laurels" ; take a brief respite from your impassioned labors but be ready to gear up the power soon  to keep luxury in the future.

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


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