The “Boss from Hell” – A Riff on Mastery

I've never been satisfied with the accepted notion that the 3 of Pentacles represents the "master craftsman" while the 8 of Pentacles shows an "apprentice." The number Three appears early in the numerical sequence and is therefore relatively undeveloped; in the suit of Earth it portrays a golden opportunity to "learn the ropes" but not … Continue reading The “Boss from Hell” – A Riff on Mastery

“Pleasure with Pain for Leaven:” Blended Satisfaction

I've often pondered what Macgregor Mathers intended by the description "blended pleasure" as a pejorative for the emotional state shown in the 4 of Cups. I had to stop and think "Blended with what, and to what end?" The purpose of blending two things is usually to improve the quality of one or both of … Continue reading “Pleasure with Pain for Leaven:” Blended Satisfaction

“Will the Real Page of Wands Please Stand Up?”

The methods by which human personality, age and gender have been assigned to the court cards of the tarot have never resembled an exact science. The old ways of using physical traits as the  basis for qualitative "thumbnails" are almost entirely unsatisfactory: Wands people are assumed to be fair-haired, light-skinned and blue-eyed, those at the … Continue reading “Will the Real Page of Wands Please Stand Up?”

A Further Refinement: Lunar Month Look-Ahead for July-August

All images copyright U.S. Games Systems Inc, Stamford, CT The New Moon for July, 2020 occurred on the 20th of the month, 7/20/2020. After I pulled these cards for my monthly "Lunar Month Look-Ahead," I was thinking about numerologically-derived "birth cards" and "year cards," and was struck by the idea that a monthly "New Moon" … Continue reading A Further Refinement: Lunar Month Look-Ahead for July-August

Meditation Patterns: Strength/Lust and the Leo Decans

Continuing my exploration of the "meditation patterns" for the Minor Arcana from Jim Eshelman's Liber Theta, here are the patterns for the Leo trump card, Strength (Lust in the Thoth Deck), and the three decans of Leo; I call this sequence "The Three Trials of Lust." The Minor Arcana for the Leo decans are 5 … Continue reading Meditation Patterns: Strength/Lust and the Leo Decans

Meditation Patterns: The Emperor and the Aries Decans

A Facebook friend of mine just reminded me that Liber Theta, the College of Thelema's Thoth-based rewrite of the Golden Dawn's Liber T, includes what author Jim Eshelman calls "meditation patterns" for each pair of Major Arcana that are considered "astrological counterparts" to the Minor Arcanum for the associated decan of the Chaldean zodiac. There … Continue reading Meditation Patterns: The Emperor and the Aries Decans