This blog has gone through a brief overview of 10 pictorial representations of the ancient arcanum of the Western Mystery Tradition titled by the itallians “the Tarrochi”.
Please be sure to “subscribe” for free , if you like this blog and posts. the material here is meant to give a bare bones representation of some of the more hidden aspects of tarot symbolism, the teachers of tarot have expounded the system in large extent and I would highly advise the serious student of this magnificent pack of cards to obtain and study the works of Papus, Wirth, Sadhu among others, and familiarlize oneself with the topics discussed.
This of course presupposes you are able to accept that Tarot is more than mumbo jumbo and is actually a pictographic form of esoteric education and development.
That being said we have covered what are commonly known as the Lunar initiations represented in the pack of tarot cards. This is the downward action of the soul in its manifestation into matter. With the beginning of Arcanum XI we are going to go toward Solar inititiation and this is the subtle realms of development toward the primordial source of Being. In essence the first initiation series is that of Being to Becomming, the second Becomming toward Being or Lunar and Solar respectively.
Beginning with Arcanum XI the title of this discussion is Strength. In the strength key we are given the image of a woman holding the mouth of a lion against the background that is somewhat deserted. This is a real gross representation of this key. So first we must focus on the title of the card. This provides the framework of what the symbols are actually saying , which is the “word” speaking in primordial images. FIAT LUX.
This card is titled strength or force it represents the Sophian aspect of the cosmos in the power over the “Lion” of lower manifestation. Instantly for those gnostically inclined this brings up a picture of the “lion headed” deity called Yaldabaoth, and his emergence from a stronger power called Sophia . The Valentinian gnosis will bring out the aspect of Sophian Fall and how she actually was split into two. This is not what is being indicated here, by the simple overpowering of the Demiurgical “lion”. When this demuirge has been subdued he shows the natural elemental form that is given in what is in my honest oppinion the most esoterically designed deck of all time, that is my friend Bishop Payne Towler’s Tarot of The Holy Light (http://www.tarotuniversity.com/2011/09/tarot-of-the-holy-light-deck.html) which is going to be the Magnum Opus of this sites exegesis.
In the Tarot of Holy Light , the lion is made part of a wholistic gnosis and sophia is in a place of honor as the sexually revealed justice, meaning to me that the mother has been given justice when the “Lion” of patriarchy has been subdued by the natural processes inherent in its manifestation which is not rooted in the cosmos, but in the natural world, or created world. This is highly esoteric stuff and may be too much for a cursory introduction to the strength card, but the title of the site is Gnostic tarot cards and it must eventually live up to this category. At any rate i’d highly reccomend this deck , unfortunately I can’t show pictures, but if you have I Pad, or I products you can purchase an application of this magnificent deck Tarot of The Holy Light. (https://itunes.apple.com/app/tarot-of-the-holy-light/id555363251?ls=1&mt=8).
That being said, the THL deck shows an amazing visually tantalizing image of a woman that has her top unvieled, and most importantly the eyes are in the symbol of sun and moon. This is highly significant , and upon this topic i would just like to mention that the eyes have different properties when used in a certian initiatic technique that actually makes ones vision a powerful tool for gnosis.
This is what i’d like to refer to as the process of “Strengthening” that Valentinian scholars talk about. Strengthening in Valentinianism is when the the Christos strengthened the angels by the redemption of baptism and therefore made angels whole again. The other part is when the ‘angels’ strengthen us through familiarization with ‘initiatic’ techniques leading to trancendental gnosis.
“at first i was blind, but now i see”.