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The reason I wanted to bring up this ‘spreading’ out is because this new arcanum that we are going to investigate involves just this. Spreading out a new set of values and ideas. The hanged man is a tarot card that is of a very mysterious nature. One of the perilous states of action in the tarot is this one being hung upside down. It represents the state of “reversal” its odd and seems that no one would really take this position. However the hanged man is is a place of unnatural equipoise. he or she, for the soul isn’t really a male or female but is androgynous , at least according to the Exegesis on the Soul in Nag Hammadi.
The soul here is representing the change that initiatic force brings. Gareth Knight says in a wonderful book about Merlin in the Arthurian Tradition ” the hanged man represents a total reversal of materialistic values”. This is because initiation is that of consciousness. This picture is the best in my opinion because there are two trees. And pantheistically speaking the values of a whole person must come from the balancing force of the “middle way”. This to me is very significant and I can only expound but a little.
As most of you know I am a huge fan of Dr. Stephan Hoeller, who in turn gave a translation of C.G. Jung’s “Seven Sermons to the Dead”. In his amazing commentary he gives the essentials with uncanny experience and wit, of the entire psychological thesis and rectification of our experience of sickness, seperation and disease. Hoeller goes to say in essence that our experience of being divided is because we are crystallized in a state of consciousness that is “one sided” in its polarity. This of course is exactly what the thoroughly Pantheistic view of Taoism is based upon. The balancing and harmonization of the seemingly opposite yin and yang.
There is another representation here that only a few may recognize that of the colors that are being accentuated of the Black , White and Red. Blue water stands behind our “hanged man” and it is for good reason, the hanged man is the birth of the new humanity. A interpretation of this key at face value would be thus: The hanged man is a card that indicates the reversal of common values that are based upon an inverted system , since the head is toward the earth is represents a gravitational pull toward earth with ones roots in higher realities. The middle position between the white and black trees represents the balancing of opposites and the pantheistic view of humanity as a mid way , or medium of the high and the low, or light and dark.
The red, black and white symbolism is alchemical and we will cover this in another post. It must be realized that this key is vast, because it is a symbol of very deep teaching. its not easy to explain and not easy to internalize. However some of the hints provided here might lead the seeker to places of great openness to teaching that has before remained hidden. Even though words are being used, my tongue is entirely inadequate to explain the profundity of this key. Though I will try please synthesize what is being said through your own experience and views. If there is any value in this post its in the fact that Tarot is not just a method of Divination but a repository of Initiatic Gnosis.
F.L. Cor Meum Lucidum