Friday, August 7, 2015

Appendix: Summary of card-sefira correlations

Fool: En Sof; no end, i.e. without limit, without number (“Sefira” understood as “numeration”). Fool’s gaze is like that of saints, seeing what is not of this world. Seven feathers of Lent on earliest known card. Card referred to as “divine brain” in a 16th century “tarot appropriatei” poem. Two kinds of ignorance, as in Cusa, “Learned” and otherwise.

Magician. Kether=Crown. From it comes everything. 4 elements on table. Triads. Hat, like Egyptian Creator gods’ horns. Bubble blower resembles signs in Sefer Raziel.

Popess.  Hochmah=Wisdom. Conventional medieval attributes of Wisdom, cross and book. Cross later removed, book opened. Solomon.

Empress. Binah=Understanding.  Source of life, mother of those below and of souls. Conceptual, as opposed to wisdom’s intuitive knowing.

Emperor. Gedullah=Greatness. Chesed=Mercy. Emperor has power to grant pardons and confer titles, set example, give counsel.

Pope. Gevurah=Power. Pachad=Fear. Din=Judgment. Harsh judgment, severitas. Popes burned heretics. Excommunicated others. Inner and outer judge.

Love. Tiferet=Glory, Beauty. Beloved of Song of Songs, one for whom Malkhut yearns, Sun to Moon. When united, raised to Binah, mother of the son..

Chariot. Netzach,=victory, endurance, eternity. Chariots used for victory celebrations. 2 horses=Victory through disciplining of desire.

Justice (or Strength?). Hod=honor or majesty, carries out sentence from above, but justice with mercy, arm leaning on scales.

Hermit. Yesod=Foundation, who unites Heaven and Earth, encompassing “all”. Sun on robe. 1760 spelling suggests Hermes Trismegistus.

Wheel. Malkhut=Kingdom, bottom of tree. Reversal of direction, exchanging temporal course for spiritual., descent for ascent.

Strength (or Justice?). Malkhut, i.e. the soul, getting strength from Lion, symbol of Jesus (Rev. 5:5: And one of the ancients said to me: Weep not; behold the lion of the tribe of Juda, the root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof.), who is also the Sun of Justice (Sol Justicicae)..

Death. Hod doing his duty carrying out sentences pronounced above, but with mercy, i.e. reaper sparing heads, clearing weeds. Case: Death=Jonah’s whale.

Temperance. Water and wine of mercy, from angel whose wings can bear one upward. Devil. False beauty, secular glory. The pretty face on early Devil cards. Case: the Devil, too, is an aspect of God.  

Tower. Burning away impurities by severe judgment, so as to lighten the soul.

Star. Washing off exposed impurities, anointing with spirit of mercy, like David after his sins with Bathsheba before the birth of Solomon. Case compares to window ( Emperor) and “hand extended”.

Moon. Judgment and repentance, and finding one’s divine core.. Sun. Uniting with the divine Wisdom of the Son. Rev. 19:11: “Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war.”

Judgment. Kether unites judgment with mercy.

World. Entrance to heaven, from Kether returning to En Sof. Case: “the end is the beginning”.

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