Tarot Card Comparisons: The Thoth Tarot- 5 of Wands: STRIFE & The Barbara Walker Tarot-5 of Wands:IMPASSE
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Thoth Tarot & comparisons

Tarot Card Comparisons: The Thoth Tarot- 5 of Wands: STRIFE & The Barbara Walker Tarot-5 of Wands:IMPASSE

The Tarot of EliThe Fives of Tarot often bring trepidation among the both readers of tarot and their clients, but fear not, they represent motion coming to the aid of matter. The fives are storm and stress resulting in the complete upset of the statically stabilized system, simply because things in stasis don't evolve. So these fives aren't regarded as "evil" but rather as a corrective to the reluctance to get up and leave comfort zones and get on with the "job".
To the Four Elements, the fives bring serious problems of unbalance and is often called "nature throwing you a curve ball".

The Five of Wands-Strife, brings quarrel and strife in the Vital energy of sexuality and passion: The Five of Cups,  brings disappointment to relationships; The Five of Swords, brings defeat to health and mind; The 5 of Disks, brings strangulation to income and business.
All seemingly very gloomy; However, the other cards in the divination will show how long the difficulty, as well as,  how serious the fives are to be taken. Really, these nasty old 5's just announce that a difficulty exists and often the solution to the problem at hand is in the rest of the Tarot reading.

THE Thoth Tarot- FIVE OF WANDS; STRIFE,
isoften called The Lord of Strife (Guardian of Strife).  Astrologically the 5 of Wands is Saturn in Leo, which is the influence of Geburah in the World of Pure Spirit; Atziluth of the Qbalalistic Four Worlds.
Here the powerful heavy effects of Saturn, united with a Fire sign like Leo, brings quarreling and Strife in energy. The Old name of Saturn was Cronus, and/or "grandfather time", who eats its own children. For indeed, Geburah, as Time, is the one who begins and ends life. Therefore, Strife in energy is known as the "2nd Law of Thermodynamics: "All things proceed from order to disorder".

The Angels of the Decan are Vahaviah and Yelayel, necessary knowledge for those who wish to call on them.

Wands are a continual outpouring of force, with Saturn influence, this flow of force is agitated and disturbed, not unlike water flow is disturbed by rocks, causing rapids. Or more likely, as volcanic magma is disturbed by the tons of rock its pushing through.  Thus in the Five of Wands, there is contest unresolved.

On the Barbara Walker Tarot, a man exhibiting strife, is surrounded by the "Dead", holding the wands of power, showing an impasse and a certain powerlessness in the man. This makes sense, as one who lives in "yesterday's emotion", is not moving today, as they are surrounded by the past and live not in the moment.

Crowley's Thoth Tarot Card,5 of Wands-Strife, shows the nature of the energy rather than its disturbed nature as displayed by the Golden Dawn , Ryder-Waite Tarot Decks or other traditional tarot decks.

In the Thoth Five of Wands, are shown:
  1. The Lotus wand of the Golden Dawn Adeptus Minor of Tiphareth.
  2.  The Phoenix Wand of the Adeptus  and the Major of Geburah.
  3. All crossing  the central wand of the Major Adept, from the left and right side, therefore illustrating the Major Adept as the "Middle Path".  Also, the fact that the Major Adept Wand is central is because it's position implies this severity is directed by Geburah rather than happenstance. The Phoenix wand implies resurrection from the purgation of Fire, while the Lotus Wand is of the Mother.
 
Many people find Geburah a difficult Intelligence to understand because She is a volcanic as Pelé ( Hawaiian Volcano Goddess), seemingly all irrational disturbance. Yet these disasters are derived from the benign and gentle influence of the Feminine  that is Great Mother Binah. To me, this just shows Spirits "tough love" for its incarnations; i.e., "mommy spank" so the child doesn't die drowning in stupidity! Spirit knows , for now, you are the most creative self-reflection of the Divine Creative made manifest, and are designed to have the internal strength necessary to  handle anything this Universe can throw at you. Yet, because we often believe the definitions of those who rule and enforce definition (our indoctrinates), we see ourselves as a weakness, trying to become strong.  All because we are taught to believe that mortality/vulnerability is a weakness, rather than the only way to experience the courageousness of our "Hanged-Man" Souls, as they seek discrimination and/or discernment.

Immortals don't have need of courage; they don't die! Immortals also can not see an end or beginning of themselves; they don't have one. Also, immortals, don't have sensuality. Sensuality requires a "beginning and an end", to exist. So to learn discerning thought, and be able to observe how it works as a pattern in Life-The Vital Energy, they need to operate through a mortal-living being who is loaded with sensors.  The very fact that Soul of you is seeking sensuality by building an incarnate persona, requires severity just to make it so and a fearlessness to make it happen!

All is "friction", "action/reaction" in the mortal electromagnetic realms. For example, a certain amount of friction (strife) is required to form energy into creations. Without the severity of friction, form could not become form nor could it move! Just so, without the friction of severity in ones life, accomplishment, progress and evolution would not happen! We Souls knowingly build a personal incarnation, knowing it can be a "crap shoot" and certain severity/strife will be applied, even if we expect it or not! Heck, sometimes the Soul-body hook-up doesn't work, as it isn't stable enough, so we have a Crib death!

Now, the stability of the fours/form is being shaken by a powerful active force called Strife.  The word Strife tends to carry clouds of discomfort to our thought processes; However, this isn't as bad as it sounds nor is it a punishment. For energy to stay an active force, it must keep moving---when we get complacent and satisfied in our stability--well, energy must transform to continue moving. So the Real Authority in your life (The Divine Soul of you) starts moving things around in your life to get you moving! The bell is rung, you best come out swinging for its now time to change things!

The accompanying states of confusion, frustration and anxiety are all states of abundant energy that is being held back by complacency, fear of effort and unwillingness to move forward. This causes Strife to "come to Grand Mother's house", here the Mother of Life comes as a wolf in disguise to stimulate you to act.

As before stated:Astrologically this card is Saturn in Leo, Saturn is the planet of discipline, of knowing your limits, boundaries, and of time. Saturn reminds us to do things step-by-step---but do them you must!

Leo is dynamic creative power that wants limitless expression and will not be held back. You can see that this is a paradigm for confusion, anxiety and angst if you resist taking those necessary steps for motion in you life. Baby steps, work but only if you take them! This is not a time to live in your dreams----you now must act!

The yellow background of the Thoth Tarot card is the active energy of Leo.
  1. The grey lotus represent creative thought unable to bloom ( The Alchemical leaded consciousness) because of anxiety and confusion.
  2.  The Phoenix headed wand represents the triumph of rising from your own angst to greater heights of creation.
  3. The winged Eye of Horus is the all seeing eye of creation.
  4.  The snakes beneath it represent regenerative force which is what happens when we release anxiety to the motion of creative self.
All in all, the 5 of Wands card is called the "master's journey card" for it states that the Divine thinks you're good enough for the job of expanding and liberating life and overcoming the resistance of stability in your own creative manner.  Also, the Divine Creative wants you back in motion. Repose is over---time to get back on your feet and move forward!


To the Adepts of the White School of Tarot, (Great White Brotherhood) every phenomena is a sacrament, as "what exists is supposed to exist"...by Divine decree. Divine-Creation, doesn't build what it doesn't want. Hence, the Thoth Five of Wands is called Strife, as it is a disturbance caused by the Fiery nature of Spirit----where the "inner motion" disturbs the stasis of the "outer" being, for "god-ness" sake!
 
To reiterate:The Thoth Tarot- 5 of Wands-Strife:
Displays the three wands of the Adepts, The Chief Adept is the lead colored center wand. The Minor Adept is the Lotus topped wand, and the Major or Second Adept is the Phoenix headed wand. 
The 5 of Wands represents Geburah-the 5th Sephiroth, in the suit of Fire. Geburah, is on the Left hand path--the Path of the Goddess as  Sephiroth #5 who is the State of Energy Conscious called Severity. Which states a dichotomy of both tame-less irrational energy and the benign and gentle influence of the feminine. This very fact is shown in the stars, as this card is ruled by Saturn in Leo. Leo shows the element of Fire at its strongest and most balanced. While Saturn weighs it down and embitters it.
This is a type of volcanic energy---in that it destroys to build up, just as the Hawaiian islands experience volcanoes. There seems to be no end to this energy.

The Middle Wand represented in the Five of Wands, is the Wand of the Chief Adept and shows that the Authority of Severity is derived from superiors; keeping this from being a truly disastrous moment in the Querent's life. There are also two Wands of the Second/ Major Adept Topped with the Head of the Phoenix, these Second Adept wands represent purgation through Fire and the resurrection of the pure energy  from its ashes. The Minor Wands (or Third Adept) are considered the daughters of the Three of Wands-Virtue which refers to Binah (Great Mother) in the Suit of Fire.

By understanding the destructive benevolence of the 5 of Wands, one learns the absolute need to tear down the old to build the new and/or wake up the non-productive being with a hot jolt of sever energy (energy-in-motion) to get them moving and producing again. Rather than destroy a soul who is mired in its own delusions, The Great Mother, would rather shock you back into performance than loose you. This is a card that bespeaks "Tough Love".

The Barbara Walker Tarot-5 of Wands: IMPASSE, illustrates the Irish or Scottish druidic, mummer's dance called "The Rose". Five men with swords or cudgels, danced around a sixth, known as a Fool,
who was symbolically slain him and then resurrected by the administration of a magic elixir called the Golden Frosty Drop. The Death and Rebirth of the Fool, was accompanied by a chant, "the dew drop in the rose", which seems to be a western version of the Hindu god- Shiva's "jewel in the lotus".

Since the Wands are Phallic expression of energy, the "jewel in the lotus" is a mystic phrase with many overlapping meanings: the Lingam in the Yoni, a drop of semen in the vulva, a fetus in the womb, a child safe in it's mothers care, a soul embedded in the world, a corpse entombed in Mother Earth. In fact, any male in some way enclosed in the female.
Therefore, we have the Grail of the Golden Frosty Drop, and the crescent moon, displayed on the Barbara Walker Tarot Card, along with the phallic wands, held in the hands of "hostile powers", that the prostrate man is unable to stand up to.

The Rose is a universal symbol of the Goddess as a nubile nymph and mother. In pre-Christian Rome, the rose was a symbol of the goddess Venus.  Botanically and in mythology, the rose is related to the five-petaled apple blossom and signified the Goddess's paradise of the Tantric sages.  This Paradise of the Tantric Divine Feminine is called Jambu Island,"land of the rose-apple tree". The mystic journey to this paradise was expressed in sacred dances like the mummer's dance. In Germany this dance was called Ringel-Ringel Rosencranz which is known in England as "Ring around A Rosey". The prelude to resurrection was the last phrase of "All fall down", as death was inescapable.

The five of Wands is seen as dire, for it is powerlessness in the suite of power. Here, security collapses into insecurity. Even if we known that the impasse serves a higher goal of transformation, it still feels agonizing to the individual experiencing it.

When the 5 of Wands card is thrown in a reading:
  •  In the next 5 weeks or 5 months, the opportunity for releasing anxiety or frustration to creative self is to be utilized.
  • Any frustration with either Leo people or in the month of Leo or with your own creativity should be solved within this time.
  • Creative thought and action are required!
  • Many of us have inherited anxiety, or patterns of angst from our parents and or family life----now is the time to break these patterns in your self. Just remember, blame will not help you here, nor is it a viable motion, so forget blame and correct the error you see in your patterns of motion.
  • Evolution demands we correct the errant emotional patterns of our past to move forward as a successful "I AM ME" in the eternal NOW! 
  • Implying, that the querent is involve in a spiritual conflict. This frustrating conflict can ensue for 5 weeks or 5 months because of this confusion of ideas.  The solution of which depends on the diligence of the querent.
  • Here, the querent is adjusting the identity, struggling with self-doubt while striving to move forward.
  •  There maybe a struggle or strenuous warfare- like competition for riches and success, a kind of battle in life. 
  • The querent might also feel like they are in a impasse, powerless in a time of trial and difficulty.
  • Will experience in 5-wks or 5-months, Strife, quarreling, fighting, violent contest, and even boldness and rashness.
  • There could be cruelty, lust, and desire---overwhelmingly so.
  • Prodigality and generosity as well.
  • The lay of the cards will show the dignity but anyway you look at it, an eruption of energy-in-motion directed by a "Higher Power" is upon the Querent and no matter how fearfully viewed or painful the experience, it is for the benevolent purpose of revitalizing the Querent.
Thank you for your interest, comments and supportive donations. May you live long and prosper!


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