Tarot 101, My Way – Minor Arcana: The Tens

Plato considered Ten to be a perfect number when viewed from a philosophical rather than a mathematical perspective (in the second case, the term has an entirely different derivation attributed to Euclid). In the qabalistic model of the Universe, Ten delivers the "last gasp" of an elemental energy in its increasingly encumbered progress down the Tree of Life. The original, largely spiritual, force … Continue reading Tarot 101, My Way – Minor Arcana: The Tens

Tarot 101, My Way – Minor Arcana: The Nines

The number Nine marks the end of the series of simple numbers; the Ten is more of a postscript, the "jumping-off place" for a return to Unity (Ten reduces numerologically to One: 1+0 = 1). As such it is considered the completion and fulfillment of the promise of the Ace of each suit. Zoroaster said it … Continue reading Tarot 101, My Way – Minor Arcana: The Nines

Tarot 101, My Way – Minor Arcana: The Eights

I've said almost everything I have to say about the Eights in two previous posts, "The Eights and Anxiety" and "The Sevens and Eights" (links below). The one thing that bears repeating is Joseph Maxwell's idea that the simple even numbers Four and Eight are characteristically balanced owing to their roots in the binary Two, although the … Continue reading Tarot 101, My Way – Minor Arcana: The Eights

Tarot 101, My Way – Minor Arcana: The Sixes

According to Wikipedia,  "(Greek) mathematicians, including the mathematician-philosopher Pythagoras, proposed as a perfect number, the number 6, (which) was believed perfect for being divisible in a special way: a sixth part of that number constitutes unity; a third is two; a half — three; two-thirds is four; five-sixths is five; six is the perfect whole." It … Continue reading Tarot 101, My Way – Minor Arcana: The Sixes

Tarot 101, My Way – Minor Arcana: The Fives

Five is a number of necessary change, usually experienced as chaotic, coming hard on the heels of the complacent Four. I like to call it a "can-opener" or "nut-cracker" that liberates the stale atmosphere of its predecessor and re-establishes momentum; however, its benefit is often recognized only in hindsight. In action it can feel thoroughly disruptive. I also … Continue reading Tarot 101, My Way – Minor Arcana: The Fives

The Eights and Anxiety

As the result of an ongoing Facebook discussion, I've been solidifying my opinion of the tarot Eights as an expression of anxiety. This appears clearly in two of the RWS cards but is less obvious in the other two. Although I'm not well-versed in it, my understanding is that conventional numerology treats Eight as a "power" number, and in exoteric tarot … Continue reading The Eights and Anxiety

Tarot 101, My Way – Minor Arcana: The Fours

The number Four expresses stability that is the result of entrenched inertia rather than the dynamic tension that steadies the Two; it is the initial fulfillment of the promise of the Ace, and presages the final state of completion in the Ten. Pythagoras observed that the power of the Ten lies within the Four because summing the numbers from One to Four (!+2+3+4) produces … Continue reading Tarot 101, My Way – Minor Arcana: The Fours

Tarot 101, My Way – Minor Arcana: The Threes

In esoteric number theory, the Three represents growth, progress and opportunity. Geometrically, it is symbolized by the triangle, the third point of which provides a new perspective by mediating between the other two; thus, "understanding" is also indicated. Another thought is that it implies "getting off the treadmill" implied by the cyclical motion of the Two and … Continue reading Tarot 101, My Way – Minor Arcana: The Threes

The Jabberwocky and the Thoth Tarot

There is something slightly dismal about the opening and closing stanzas of the famous Lewis Carroll nonsense poem that reminds me of some of the more unsettling cards of the Thoth deck (must be those flimsy, miserable, shabby-looking birds described by Humpty Dumpty).  I took on the interesting challenge of finding correlations between the cards and the rest … Continue reading The Jabberwocky and the Thoth Tarot

Tarot 101, My Way – Minor Arcana: The Twos

The number Two represents the Line in Pythagorean number theory; it is the original Point "in extension," which in theory is infinite but in practice joins Point A to Point B. It cycles from one extreme to the other in an oscillating or reciprocal fashion that is symbolized by the swing of a pendulum, briefly … Continue reading Tarot 101, My Way – Minor Arcana: The Twos