COMPARISONS: The Thoth Tarot-Key 12-THE HANGED MAN & The Barbara Walker Tarot-Key 12: THE HANGED MAN.
The Thoth Tarot-Key 12, is assigned the
Hebrew letter Mem (bottom left of card),
which means Water. Mem
a Maternal letter meaning the Elemental Water
and/or the Amniotic Fluid
the Womb (the Vesica Piscis
is the oval of the Ankh). Even in Nature, this is of no surprise, since the Gnostic believe that the
Homo-Sapiens is an GMO evolution of a marine mammal, rather than ape,
and that the Noah's Ark and the Flood is a hierarchic presentation of
the facts of life as our Archetypes came from "The Dark Abyss of Space". The Sumerians, believed our "angelic" forefathers,
Annunaki (Meaning: "Those who from the Sky came") spliced their DNA with
marine amphibian, the most intelligent species on the earth at the
time of their arrival.
Whether the "angels that fell to earth" were alien geneticists
or not, there are many scientists that also
believe the marine mammal theory because of the fact we have more in
common with marine mammals than apes. I would suggest you research this,
as I am about the Tarot here and not seeking to become an
To continue : The Hanged Man represents
the baptism that is also a death. Death being a transformation from one
reality to another, as is birth where the Water Mammal, must become a
land-mammal or that of One from one evolution, "placing their" intelligence (The Hanged Man's head is suspended in the world of Flesh) into another. The symbolism of the Hanged Man is often attributed to
Self-Sacrifice, but this is really and errant idea. In the last Aeon of
Osiris, the Hanged Man represented the supreme formula for adept-ship
for the figure that is hung is actually the Spirit "drowning"(baptized)
in the Astral Fluid, before becoming manifest in form. The Astrals, are
where all the Forces and Forms of the "Above Sephira" meet in order to
combine in a manifestation as a physical birth in the material world.They are also where many people believe they contact more advance beings.
To the flesh-o-phobe, this would be the effect of spiritual purity being sacrifice to fleshy debasement.
To the Spirit, manifesting Spiritual Creative Intelligence is the way of transforming from idea to experience; from Self, to
Self-Awareness, from thought to discerning thought, from knowledge to Wisdom. Being in the flesh,
requires Spirit to become aware of its thoughts and how they affect the
living reflections simply by the reactions of those thoughts in the very living form
that "cloaks it". Think ill, be ill, think well be well etc.
Idea or visions, in the Aeon of Osiris,
were considered more important than the flesh, and the destruction of
bodies in the name of idea/visions (Commonly called,"For the Greater
Good') seemed a just cause. In the Aeon of Osiris , it could be said
that the foundation of thought was the ruling of definition created by the
few who enforced definition on the many and/or that the practice of genocide was the foundation of purity.
In this Age of Horus,
the idea must "expand and liberate; the living from their own
self-imposed limits, allowing the Foundation of Love ("Love thy neighbor
as thyself') to become the "common mind" where union rather than
divisionism becomes the conscious foundation of all action. Where the practice of "walking in another persons shoes", is the foundation of intelligent purity.
stated, the self in manifestation is more important than the ideas of
self, no matter how utopian the ideas are. However, the caveat here is
that, you must at first love yourself....as you can't give to another
what you don't have, thus requiring that above all things you must know yourself!
The Aeon of Horus
is the age where the hu (god, in Mandarin) man (mind: from the Hindu-Manas) realizes it is the child of the Divine Creative and becomes the Christ/Buddha consciousness on Earth, thus uniting
the Above and the Below. That union with the Divine Creative, is seen in the Hanged Man, whose
foot is connected to the Ankh (symbolized in the West as the Rosy Cross)
which is a combination of Goddess-God; oval Womb and straight Phallus, and is known
as a symbol for eternal universe in a sigil of Mankind.
knew that if it was made manifest, it was a truth, because Creation made
it. Ideas or words are not a truth, unless they can become "made manifest" by
the Power of Creation and/or the ability to do work, In a more personal
note; you exist because you're supposed to! The judgment of you has
already been made by The Divine Creative, who obviously approve your
manifestation! In other words, the obviousness of your presence proves
you are worthy of being! This kind of thinking doesn't bode well for
those who wish to "rule you", so dividing you from your "good" by a
religion made of flesh hating rules, will assure your enslavement. The
Hanged Man illustrates that being born into the World is a baptism, not a
trial to prove your worth!
The Thoth Hanged Man presents a
special meaning to the adept
, the legs are crossed so the right leg
forms a right angle to the left leg, and the arms are stretched out at
an angle of 60 degrees, so as to form an equilateral triangle. The
symbol thus presented is that of the Triangle surmounted by the Cross
which represents the descent of light ( conscious energy) into darkness
(unconscious) in order to redeem it! Love of idea, must become aware of itself
"as being the idea"!
The process of redemption continues in the symbology of the
green disks terminating at the head and limbs, representing
the influence of Venus which is the planetary symbol of Grace and
beauty. You may note, that the Central Sephiroth on the Tree of Life, is
called both Beauty and the Christ-Buddha Conscious/The Son (Sun). The Hang Man
represents the redeeming value of baptizing idea in flesh, so that it
may Live and "Know itself"!
Therefore the Hanged Man,
illusion of self-sacrifice as a loss. The idea of self-sacrifice is an illusion
of nature, for even when someone gives up their life for another, it
benefits both parties, and no one losses anything. As the symbol of the "serpent who eats its own tail" implies; life eats itself to stay alive. Even the Dead must
rise again, becoming the one who consumed them or as another incarnation. Therefore, those who treat others as they
wish to be treated, reap great rewards in present and future existence. As the 12th Century Sufi sage and poet, Mostaffa Jahaladine Rumi stated: " The grape becomes wine so it can become me."
In a wyrd
(Old English: "to weave") and moribund way, this is a beautiful card
representing the "Dying God" (Osiris, Christ, Prometheus, Mithra, Odin, etc). As Crowley stated in his Book of Thoth,"
....its importance in the present pack is merely that of the
Cenotaph, It says; ,' If ever things get bad like that again, in the new
Dark Ages which appear to threaten, this is the way to put things
right.' But if things have to be put right, it shows that they are very
wrong. It should be the chiefest aim of the wise to rid mankind of the
insolence of self-sacrifice, of the calamity of chastity: faith must be
slain by certainty, and chastity by ecstasy."
Now I know this statement
may baffle some, but Knowledge goes way beyond faith, and chastity is
an abomination in a Living Universe created from the Ecstasy of Union
: where it takes the Ecstatic Union of electric (male- Will to Force) and magnetic
(female- Will to Form) forces to create passionate life; Where the very Divine Creative
There is also a great difference
between chastity and Virtue
. Chasity is often an illusion brought on by a
form of self-absorbed importance, while Virtue,
is always being true to
yourself. True to Self, is "above all things know thyself' and this is
done by seeing through the illusions of individual self importance and
knowing that all selves, are equally important to the Greater Self, which
is the Universal Collective Unconscious (Phrase coined by Dr. Carl
Jung). As is so often necessary, you must see through the illusions
your reactions, before you can know the Truth of Action. Hence we must
learn to sacrifice our microcosmic egos built of self-importance, to the Macrocosmic Ego- the Greater
Good (god) of All Being! To render inert, our egoistic self importance, is no
sacrifice at all, for one lets go of a "lesser-bound- mind" for a
expansive Greater Knowledge
. To give up less to gain more, seems
a small price to pay......yet so hard to do, as it seems a gamble to
the self absorbed ego that believes only in the certainty of possession.
The Greater Self, knows that possession of illusion, is still the
ownership of nothing!. Unless you are the Will to Be
manifestation, you own no-thing as your body is a momentary state possession
of sensation called "pleasure pain training" . We are a "personality" of the Real Person, for the purpose of Self experimentation; it is a temporary
Self-Reflection. What you really are, no-body could ever be!
back ground illustration of the Thoth Tarot card
is of a grill of small squares,
representing the Elemental Tablets that represent the names and sigillia
of all the Forces of Nature. The Spirit/Soul seems to sacrifice its
innocence, purity, fiery motion and high intelligence to the necessary
physical grossness of manifestation (represented by the coiled
serpent) . However, things are not always as they appear for it is the
Soul's very love of being, that creates being and being benefits energy
by creating "Self-Reflection" and/or "Self-Awareness". "To Know
thyself", is impossible for the eternal, unless you "create a self"! As you can see,
great study is needed to understand this terrific card!
Granted, The HANGED MAN- key 12,
is a curious image of
and its implications are very different from the previous paths
that connect the Personality and the Higher Self; Severity, because
this is the Path of Mem (meaning-Water) that connects Hod (Splendor)
and Geburah (Severity) on the Pillar of Severity.
The Hebrew word-MEM,
(Water) is a one of the three Maternals, and implies a Baptism in
Maternal Waters, as the other two : The Path of Shin (Art) is a baptism
in Fire, and The Path of Aleph-The Fool, is a baptism in Air. Of all
these three Baptisms, the Baptism in Water (Consciousness) is the
central and pivotal experience of the entire Qabalistic Tree of Life.
Consciousness, is the Alchemical First Principle, also called the Thinking Principle and is refereed to the physical image of Water because it is alike water in wave motion, and tidal fluid flow.
The lowest expression of the First Principle, is first found, by the upward traveling initiate, as the Astral Fluid that is drawn down the Path of the Universe into Yesod, the Foundation Sephiroth. This Thinking Principle,
the Astral Fluid, is found as the Stable Intelligence, by virtue of
consistency in all Sephiroth, and Paths as it underlies everything that
The Head or Consciousness is pointing downward.
Hence, the Spirit
is "drowned" in
the Maternal Waters of Imagination, where upon, perceiving itself as a Soul, as an
intrinsic and inseparably part of the One Consciousness. Carl Jung, who
coined the phrase. Collective Unconscious
, describe this Water of Mem
as a "...boundless
expanse full of unprecedented uncertainty, with apparently no inside
and no outside, no above and no below, no here and no there, no mine and
no thine, no good and no bad."
. To him the First Principle of the Alchemists was also described as Water, as he states, "It
is the world of water, where all life floats in suspension: where the
realm of the sympathetic system, the soul of everything living begins;
where I am individually this and that; where I experience the other in
myself and the other-than-myself experiences me.....the collective
conscious is anything but an encapsulated personal system; it is sheer
objectivity, as wide as the world and open to all the world."
would highly recommend that the initiate reads the works of Carl Jung,
on the Universal Collective Unconscious, thus gaining a modern
understanding of the ancient wisdom. To put it another way, in the state
of consciousness we are "always the subject that has an object", a
reality that is totally turned around in the Universal Collective
Unconscious where, we are "the object of every subject", as stated by
In other words, our subjective Self, I AM
becomes objective Self, Me
, when immersed in the Maternal Waters on the
Path of Mem. THE HANGED MAN.; where the invisible becomes visible.
that we must move constantly upward on the Paths of the
Tree of Life, for only through the hindsight gained by going to a higher
Sephiroth, can we experience an understanding of the qualities of the
The Path of Mem,
Geburah, the 5th Sephiroth
(Severity) which is directly above Tiphareth, the 6th Sephiroth (Beauty); Geburah
is the Fiery or Active part of the Higher Self
and is shown as Red in
color; the color of Mars. This further illustrates the point that
Geburah is the fiery energy on the Pillar of Water below Binah. In the
Thoth Tarot card of the HANGED MAN, the Womb of Binah is where the
hanging figure's foot is held; from the oval of the Egyptian Ankh (Vesica Pisces), and/ or head womb, extends the cross like symbol
(also called the Tau cross) that are the outstretched arms of Adam Khadmon, representing the Divine Person who is both Divine
Androgyny and Infinite.
To the one who has inwardly traveled the Paths to this point
, it is to be noted that the Path of Mem
, the HANGED MAN, must be approached very differently than the lower paths. Here, the mediator becomes the object of one's own meditation
The individual becomes the "other" which was previously the object of
pursuit; the "other" now becomes the initiate. Thus it can be said, that
the personality meditates in pursuit of the Higher Self, The Real Person, who then
becomes or envelopes the Personality of the pursuer creating a Higher
Sensual Self....A self often stated as having "Magick Abilities".
The Barbara Walker Tarot, Key 12 : THE HANGED MAN,
uses the traditional medieval illustration of one who is baffled (hung by his feet) between two trees. This is an implication of One's Soul, hung up side down on the Middle Pillar of the Qabalistic Tree of Life.
This Tarot Card is a clear indicator of a non-christian belief system, as it depicts a explicit pagan origin.
Here, the door shaped gallows was atypical of the old sacrifices to Odin, a "dying god", God of the Hanged.
This gallows design was also called the "wooden horse", or "horse of Yggr" (Odin was called Yggr-the terrible one). The message here was that of one must practice self-sacrifice, often leading to death, to reach mystical enlightenment and resurrection.
Here is the Universal dying god myth, being based, as all others, on the belief that a person crossing the threshold between life and death, could see both worlds, and thereby revealing the secrets of eternity.
The Medieval custom of baffling, was like the stocks, a form of humiliation, rather than a death sentence. Therefore the Tarot Card Hanged Man, is not showing fear, rather he is sublime in his acceptance of the situation. There is a link here of the traditional rituals humiliation of the Sacred King before his sacrificial death. This tradition is best known to Christian cultures as the scourge and humiliation of Christ, before he was crucified [ Mathew 26:67, 27:30].
The crossed legs of the Hanged Man suggest the Egyptian hieroglyph of a stick figure with legs arranged the same way. As a verb this hieroglyph meant "to dance", as a noun it meant ab, "heart soul". The Heart Soul was the most consider the most important of the Egyptian seven souls (7 auric bodies of Tantra). For it was the one given by Mother's blood, and was sure to be the one weighed by Maat on her balance scales, after death. Most ancient peoples believed the heart was a person's true essence. The heart beat was the "dance of life" within.
However, the Dance of Life, is a far older concept than Egyptian culture, for the Hindu god Shiva, perpetually danced the dance of life in Chidambaram, The Center of the Universe, known as a mystic place located in the Cave of the Heart where "true Self" resides; which I call the Real Person and/or "I AM". Shiva's dance could be felt in the heart of each person, and his universal soul dwelt in the heart of the World Mother.
Even Jesus, another of the Dying Gods, was quoted as saying in the Acts of John: "to the universe belongs the dancer. He who does not dance does not know what happens. Now if you follow my dance, see yourself in me who is speaking...You who dance, consider what I do, for yours is the passion of this Man of which I am to suffer."
Hence, the Tarot Hanged Man, was representing the many savior figures who underwent a kind of martyrdom calculated to apotheosize him, or put him in touch with the Lord of Death.
The Hanged Man card usually turns up in a reading as;
- Enforced sacrifice such as forced by the State.
- Punishment, Loss of a often fatal involuntary nature.
- General suffering.
- However, if the accompanying cards are of a deeply metaphysical/spiritual nature, this card is about giving up old, bad habits, for new regenerative habits.
and immortal Soul, sacrifice is an illusion, simply because, loss is
before gain, error is before correction; ignorance is before knowledge;
unknown is before understanding.
- A person is declaring their Spiritual inheritance as "I AM".
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