By viewing The Qabalah's Tree of Life, you may notice that Hod (8th Sephira) is on the same plane as the 7th Sephira, Netzach. Hod is Splendor and Netzach is Victory, both have the same inherent weakness;They both are reactionary and short lived.
The 8's are reaction to the damage that has been done by the 7's. Therefore, the 8's seem to be a remedy for the 7's mischief, however, they are more of a spontaneous reaction than a perfect correction. This being so, they still are free of the errors of the 7's.
The Thoth Eight of Disks-Prudence:
Being a disk, and dealing with money and material matters, this card seems a great deal better than the 8 of Sword and 8 of Cups. Simply because in these material and financial matters, there sometimes is a strength in doing nothing at all. It is prudent to "put something away for a rainy day".
Sun in Virgo, makes this a card of the horticulturist, the person of Husbandry who has planted the seed and must now wait for the harvest. This is not noble, but just a element of calculation that makes the gamble seem profitable. This person is very affable, (sunny in disposition) but is shrewd maybe even cunning and is nobody's fool. Often, this is the card of the Master craftsman, as slow, prudent work and paying attention to the details, is require to achieve the best result.
The inherent weakness in Prudence is that of "doing nothing at all". Too much prudent behavior can mean many missed opportunities in the material world, where swift response may bring more profit.
The Thoth Tarot 8 of Disks-Prudence, marks the turn of the tide, as the seven of Disks was the fullest possible establishment of matter transformation/failure. This is simply because of the Second Law of Thermodynamics, which many call Entropy. Matter proceeds from order to disorder in the Seven and proceeds into a step by step process of purity in the 8. In our organic world of light, compost supports the healthy seed; such is the process of the 7 to 8, in Hermetic Qabalah.
In the Hermetic Qabalah and the Tarot, the number 8 represents Hod-Splendor, and is very advantageous, as it represents Mercury in its highest spiritual aspect, as Mercury both rules and is exalted in Virgo which belongs to the Decan and is governed by the Sun. Therefore, the Thoth Deck 8 of Disks, signifies loving intelligence applied to material matters.This especially true in engineering and agricultural matters.
As Crowley so eloquently put it. " Note that Virgo is Yod, the secret seed of Life, and also the Virgin Earth awaiting the Phallic Plough."
This may sound unseemly to some, however, the Sun is the Phallus to Earth, as the Sun ejaculates its energy to the material womb that is Earth, so Crowley's explanation makes perfect energy transmission sense.
In the Metaphysics of Qabalah, Masculine force is Electric, expressive, while Feminine Force is Magnetic, receptive. Since every Sephiroth on the Tree of Life is Androgen, that is both expressive and receptive, each one a figure 8, with only one Sphere visible, the student often becomes confused about the gender attributed to the Sephira. This confusion is easily dispersed by the understanding that the Divine Twins, as shown on the Sun card, are dancing in every state of conscious energy on the Tree of Life, while one spins into view the other is as "shadow". The rhythm of the dance may be "more active" or "less active", "more receptive" or "less receptive" but the motion of Force and Form is always there. Hence, to the Qabalistic Magi, God is neither male nor female, rather Hermes and Aphrodite dance as one and are called Hermaphrodite and/or The Divine Creative.
To continue, the interest of the 8 of Disks, is a more common interest, as the Sun in Virgo suggests birth, fruitfulness, and supply. Thus, the Disks are arranged as flowers and fruits of a Tree, whose trunk is the "Middle Pillar" with both left hand path (female) and right hand path (male) fructification represented as eight flowers; the figure eight is also the figure of feminine form and masculine force in union, i.e. the "Twisted Circle of One who is Two" and/or a Mobius loop. All of which reinforces the notion of birth and fruitfulness of a Great Tree whose solid roots are in fertile land.
The Thoth Tarot-8 of Disks:
The symbol of the Sun is on the top of the 8 of Disks, because it is in the sign of Virgo which belongs to the Decan and the number 8, of the 8th Sephiroth, Hod (splendor) that represents Mercury. Mercury in the Sun, places Mercury in its highest spiritual aspect; signifying a loving intelligence applied to material matters; those of the Horticulturist, the artificer and the engineer.
The interest of the 8 of Disks, is the interest of the people as applied to labor, agriculture, and creative expression. It is illustrated as the gemantic figure Populus and the disks may represent flowers or fruits of a great tree solidly rooted in fertile land.
The essence of Virgo is the secret withdrawing of energy into the fallow earth. Moreover, Populus is the Moon retiring from manifestation to her conjunction with the Sun. The study of gemantic figures is recommended here. Do a Internet search and you will be directed to the necessary books and information, such as Crowley's 777.
At the top of this colorful card is the Sun sign and at the bottom of the harvest tree is the astrological sign of Virgo. Virgo reminds us that by attending to details and utilizing our organizational skills, we shall repeat the just harvest. Trust in your skills is the foundation of this harvest rather than the need for control; only a deep abiding trust in your skills will reap the just reward as harvest follows the ordered skill of the prudent mind. Prudence and wisdom are qualities of patient skill , not pushing to make things happen nor holding back or resisting.
On the Tree, the coins have blossomed, the patient skill of wisdom and prudence has prevailed and the successful harvest is shown by the protective leaves that hold back chaos. There is no place for doubt in this card it is a manifested Trust of skill.
The eights of Tarot represent talent, skill, craft, learning, and practical ideas being turned into a profitable profession. The card itself symbolizes the harvest tree where hard work and skill have become fruitful and now you only need await the ripening of the harvest.
This can be called the Master Craftsman's card, as mastery of a skill is depicted here; Skillful manipulation of physical material with talented fingers along with prudent thoughts and the wisdom to coordinate both.
After the failures of the knights to find the Graäl, the people began to turn toward the Gnostic teachings, as an antidote to ennui and the alienation of the mysogenic Church.
The Gnostic Traditions, showed a renewed impulse toward female-oriented perception and feeling. It was noted that life affirming concepts were hidden in the psyches of Women. Society was now looking into the forgotten Old Religions, relearning the Wisdom (Sophia) that only The Mother could teach. It was then thought that Feminine wisdom resided in feminine blood; the "wise blood" that knew how to create life. Not only in the west, but also in the east, this "Wise blood" was often symbolized as a Rose. Christianity, symbolized this feminine wisdom as the rose window (depicted on Barbara Walker's card) in it's cathedrals and the rosary.
In the east, the first rosary was Kali's japamala, "rose-chaplet", often in beads shaped as skulls, representing her power over life and death. Kali's official flower was the Red China Rose sometimes called the Kula flower. This became an euphemism for a young girls first menstrual cycle; she was said to have "borne the Kula flower". Hence, the Rose represented both uterine blood, and female self-knowledge, in which carefully taught men might participate.
Mystics of classical civilization knew the Rose as the Flower of Venus, worn as a token by her priestesses. In Mesopotamia, Mari, the Virgin Goddess of the Oceans, was also represented by a Rose, and her Priestesses were known as the "Rose Mari". The Greek poet, Nossis, said a man who never felt the love of the Goddess would live in darkest ignorance, not knowing "what flowers her roses are".
Nossis (Greek: Νοσσίς) was an ancient Greek woman epigrammist and poet, c. 300 BCE, who lived in southern Italy, at Locri. Her epigrams were inspired by Sappho, whom she claims to rival.Twelve epigrams of hers (one of which is perhaps spurious) survive in the Greek Anthology. Meleager of Gadara, in his Garland, includes her among the most distinguished Greek singers. Antipater of Thessalonica ranks her among the nine poets who deserved the honor to compete with the Muses. Nossis states in her work that her mother was named Theuphila, the daughter of Cleouchas. In another epigram, she mentions that she had a daughter named Melinna, who is possibly the poet Melinno.
[From the free internet encyclopedia; Wikipedia]
As a interesting bit of history, the rosary migrated to Europe via Arabian mystics, who "told their beads", before the rosary was adopted by the cult of the Virgin Mary. These Arabian mystics were connected to the mysterious secret of the Rose and were known to have prayed, "I think of nothing but the Rose; I wish nothing but the Ruby Rose...the love of the Rose is enough".
Barbara Walker shows the passing of inner wisdom, from mother to daughter; from the red Rose Goddess, to the white Lily maid. As is shown by the two female figures and is what the eight pentacles in a rose window represent. The priestess holding the candle of "enlightenment", standing besides the altar of the Trinity-Maid, Mother and Crone".
Traditionally, the 8 of pentacles, was a card of learning, or relearning, secret doctrines. Such as apprenticeship in a trade, or the instruction of a novitiate. It also represented a quest for the unstealable rewards of knowledge.
When the 8 of Disks or Pentacles card is thrown, it indicates:
If ill dignified.
Again, the accompanying cards will inform the reader in which direction the 8 of Disks is pointing.
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