Tarot Card Comparisons: The Thoth Tarot- 5 of Swords: Defeat & The B.O.T.A. Tarot- 5 of Swords.
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Thoth Tarot & comparisons

Tarot Card Comparisons: The Thoth Tarot- 5 of Swords: Defeat & The B.O.T.A. Tarot- 5 of Swords.

The Tarot of EliThe Thoth-Five of Swords-Defeat:
This card is about past history and fear of it repeating itself.

Astrologically this card is Venus in Aquarius. In Tarot the Fives always bring disruption, but this card's disruption is brought on by weakness and/or pacifism. Here the intellect has been enfeebled by sentiment. Fear of defeat and/or memory of defeat is a well known nullifying mechanism for action.

The Thoth 5 of Swords card represents the Sword of Severity (Geburah-5th Sephira) sweeping through the Astral realm (Yetzirah) causing a disruption of forces, as shown by the inverted pentagram, causing defeat, loss, failure, contest finished and decided against the person.
Needless to say, this is a very destructive moment in the querent's life  and depending on the surrounding cards, it can be either more destructive or less destructive than one fears.

When Severity shows up in our life to defeat us---it isn't because we "did bad" but because we are not on the right track for further growth. This being so, our "Higher-Self" decides to cleave away the unnecessary mental/emotional detritus  that blocks our psycho-dynamic motion.

The Tarot of the Hermetic Qabalah, is all about force and form and when form is stuck in the mud of self-defeating thought, Life will use severe situations of force to overcome our passive state.  Your Higher-Self wouldn't bother with this corrective if your progressive life motion wasn't important to it, so in reality this severity is a "tough love" action.  Because this is a separation and breakup of established patterns, it is a precursor to change and progress.  Therefore it's not all bad, even though it feels like a hell of "what do I do now" muddling of the mind. Let go, and let spirit move you forward by not worrying about loss or defeat but accepting it as a  necessary precursor to gaining a new motion in life. However, it is gain in a direction your weren't going, so you may naturally resist changing direction. By not resisting, acceptance will make this severe moment less devastating and thus leaving your eyes open to see the next move. Eyes clenched tight over tears of fear or anger can see nothing. 

Since 2012 our solar system has passed through the Galactic center, and the resulting disturbance has made the Astral Realm a mess of conflicting currents, and most of us are finding strange and weird events happening in our lives, emotions and befuddled minds. The Astral is the "Material of Thought" and/or "liquid light" and it is a not placid but stirred up by our solar system passing through the Center of our Galaxy and it's Photon Belt which is charging the earth with massive doses of photons, and disrupting energy currents that life depends on.

All the twisted lines in the back ground of the Thoth Card are representative of the distortion caused by this Photon influx and are also indicative of the twisting that fear induces into our emotional/ mental state which influences psychosomatic disturbance.

The five bent swords represent fear distorted thoughts and feelings, while the twisted red handkerchief on the top sword, to the viewers right, symbolizes an opening of an old wound. Old wounds tend to constrict us with fear when they are opened by thoughts of, "Oh dear, not again!"

Fear of being hurt again is prominent in this card, basically, astrologically Venus in Aquarius, represents a fear that a new relationship will not work out, and symbolizes fear of moving in new directions that are emotionally important to you.

The upside down crown (the crown is a symbol of  expanded awareness) tells us that our awareness is expanding in a fear filled direction of "upside down" thinking.

The sword handle of Pisces the fish along with the red handkerchief, represents the past (age of Pisces); old memories rising up to cloud your new awareness.

When we move in states of fear, nothing is regenerated or renewed which is represented by the sleeping snake on the sword handle.

Aries, (the ram headed sword) is about new directions, of which we are unable to move in as a state of fear. We are discombobulated by fear and risk a repeat of a past defeat.

Yet, the Star represents our greater Self; our inner Sun, that is trying to break through and get us back on to living the present rather than being dead in the past. Therefore the 5 of Swords card seems negative, with its fear of the unknown or of repetitive past mistakes; However, it tells us that we are being philosophically challenged and must adapt our belief system or lifestyle to the present unhindered by past presumptions. Life demands transformation and transformation demands courage, which is simply grabbing fear by the hand and saying," Come along with me little one, we have work to do!"  This card reminds us to let go and let god propel us forward into the now.

GEBURAH, Severity, is the fifth Sephiroth on the Qabalistic Tree of Life. Across from Geburah is Chesed, the 4th Sephiroth on the Tree. He is Her perfect balanced mate, he builds up and she tares down. As Chesed is loving and merciful, Geburah is terrible in her demanding of due.
Yet, she is also active Mars, the Warrior King. Thus this red Intelligent Energy, is female in receptive behavior and Masculine in expressive behavior. Geburah is the Destroyer, The Warrior King, The Power of Judgment, the Clarifier and the Eliminator of the Useless. Those familiar with the Hindu mysteries, would call her Kali Ma.
Geburah's symbols are: The Pentagon,
the Five Pedaled Rose of the Tudors.
The Sword and the Spear, the Scourge and chain. Her planet is Mars and the color is red.
Geburah may be the most difficult Sephiroth ( State of Intelligent Energy) to approach because of her difficult and often overwhelming lessons. Yet, Geburah, is a necessary corrective in our lives, as she tears away all that is useless, outdated or undesirable.
There is a tendency to think of Geburah/Mars/Saturn as evil, as do some of Kali Ma; However, her Severe lessons are such that they are akin to burning down a diseased forest, so that new health trees may emerge. Sure, the balances that She instigates, are painful, even devastating, but again, necessary to keep balance in the Universe of, the Spirit, the Mind, the Emotions and the Body. 

The Four Fives in the Tarot, are all in someway, connected to Severity and Strife, the degree of this severity depends on the suit the Card is in.  Yet, no matter how squeamish we are, many of us realize that it is the truly difficult situations that teach us the most. I for one, have not failed to learn from such.
So here we can say that Geburah supports our strength, for when we weaken and succumb to "comfort zones" (fear of vulnerability), She tears them away, exposing them for the fraudulent behavior they are (I think some, call this "Tough Love"). The strict discipline of Geburah is a corrective process that is  both necessary and positive. Conveying the ability to judge clearly and the willingness to be judged, as described in the Qabalistic Hermetic axiom," Watch the Watcher, Examine the Examiner, Judge the Judge."

Chesed, the 4th Sephiroth, is called Mercy, his qualities of mercy must be controlled by the Sentinel qualities of Geburah, or they will overflow into an evil imbalance of force. Sometimes Mercy must be checked, such as one must learn from their own mistakes, rather than have someone always correcting their mistakes for them as a form of pain avoidance. In the Psyche of  "freedom of choice", everyone has the right to learn from their disease! Discernment demands it, and the Tree of  Wisdom sprouts from correcting our own error but not from someone else correcting it for us.
It is this continual flowing cycles of error and correction, as the  constant interaction of Geburah and Chesed, that keeps the rhythm of life moving forward; Inhale-exhale, up-down, in-out etc.

The adept must be first initiated in Geburah, before Chesed. For one must have perfect control before being immersed in the abundance of Chesed, the Architect. Thus, the attribute of Great Power, is derived from Geburah. The Power is Great, because Geburah is related to both Kether and Binah. That Unity, is the source of this outward flowing power. Binah gives form birth potential and Geburah gives it death potential so that beginnings have ends. One can say that Geburah is the Force of Time, i.e Cronus/Saturn.

In sacred texts, Geburah is often shown as a Masculine bearded Warrior in his/her chariot, relating to Mars, therefore both Martial and Saturnine force are his/her attributes. Yet the primary qualities of Geburah are feminine, These feminine qualities are suggested by the rose of Venus, the five pedaled rose of the Tudors. Venus is  also the Planet closely related to Mars, as the forces of one are transmitted from Geburah, through Tiphareth ( Beauty) and into Netzach (Victory) of which Venus is assigned. 

Five sided symbols are related to Geburah, such as the invoking and banishing pentagram and the pentagon.  The five elemental points of the pentagram are only brought into balanced power in the individual who is relentless in their self-discipline. As any Power line electrician knows, intense focus, and unwavering handling of immense power, is essential for job longevity.  Therefore the true forces of the individual must be under the control of the Spirit (symbolized by the highest point on the Pentagram) for the individual to truly experience the mutable nature of the personality in the Higher Self of Tiphareth. The resulting immersion into the Fires of Truth, burn away all that is unworthy of Higher Self in the personality. The Burning is felt, in a brutal silence of self assessment.
The other symbols of Geburah, such as the Spear represents a swift and complete destruction while the Scourge and the Chain symbolize a continual application of Force.

The Sword  of Geburah, represents the sharp edged power of the individual under impeccable self control. The strength of severity is the individuals greatest weapon for cleaving away the delusion of man-made definitions and/or all that is unworthy of them. 
One may ask, why is there a need for such a nasty- Intelligent-judgmental- corrective force if we are the Child of God? This Severity  is easily explained as cutting away the unworthy bits of identity tampering, so that you are the original identity of your psyche.  What many fail to understand, is that if all the definitions given one, by their society, belief systems and cultures are not one's identity, THEN we CAME IN ALREADY KNOWING ourselves!
Yes it is true, dear ones, truth is made manifest. Therefore, your psyche never came seeking your truth, nor to find out who you are, the Soul/Psyche already Knows that! By putting knowledge into form is how you became manifest! You are Defined into being, not a being who seeks definition! You are a Divine Creative/Psyche who proves definition by making it manifest: we now call this psychosomatic creation!

Therefore, the severity of Geburah, helps us remember who we really are, and not what we pretend to be.

Therefore the  Five of Swords, is known as Defeat, or Lord of Defeat. Being that Venus is in Aquarius here, the normal disruption of Geburah's strength, is not the cause of disaster!  This is because weakness is the cause of the Five of Swords disaster! A weakness brought on by pacifism, and enfeebling sentiment; maybe even treachery.

The hilts of the swords form the sinister image of the inverted pentagram; where the body fears has turned "upside down" the will, by the treachery of sensation, i.e fear of pain. Feeling fearful, is often more sensual than feeling willful, since the ever present doubt brought into belief by pleasure/pain indoctrination, keeps the will from collecting into force.

You may notice that on the Thoth Tarot Card, none of the hilts are the same, implying many different weak thoughts assaulting the blue Rose of Wisdom, that was at once whole in the Four, is now all cut to pieces in the Five. Wisdom is scattered to the winds of emotional defeat and blood and the poison of inferior thoughts drip from the swords of Mind.

 As Stated, The Five of Swords is Geburah in Yetzirah, a severe Mars influence, is now in the Astral World. In Roman mythology, Mars is the consort of Venus in  (see illustration) who has weakened the aggressiveness of mars. We should understand that mythology is not a story telling a lie, but rather a storied lie relating a truth.

The Blue Rose of Venus, which is the Rose of the Cross, can't take the buffeting of the Martian assault.  Along with the nine and ten of Swords, the Five is one of the most destructive events in the deck.  Here, loss, defeat, failure where contest is decided and finished against the person.

The B.O.T.A. Tarot-5 of Swords- illustrates the Pentagram, made of 5 Swords, in an up right position.
They are yellow-gold, indicating the element of Air and assembled in the invoking pentagram for air.

There is nothing here to guide the reader, therefore, one must already know the Hermetic Qabalah's grasp of the 5 of Swords to read this card. Hence, the meanings of the colorful Thoth Tarot apply here.

When the Thoth 5 of Swords card is thrown during a reading,
  • The querent is usually caught in the fears of the past.
  • They are experiencing a self defined prison  of negative, self defeating beliefs.
  • Here is defeat on a mental level, bringing humiliation and weakness.
  • The suggestion here is to give up fighting, swallow your pride and acknowledge your limitations, and then proceed in a new direction.
  • We are only defeated when we stop seeking another way.  So there is no 5 week or 5 month period here, since it is the querent's own mental negativity that is involved here, and they could change perspective at any time.

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


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