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    Obstacle

The Last Judgment
   
Hidden Influences

Ace of Wands
      External Influences

The Tower
         
The Present

The Wheel of Fortune
      Suggestion

9 of Cups
         
The Past

3 of Cups
      The Outcome

8 of Swords
   
The Past Card represents past events that are affecting the question.
3 of Cups

Maidens in a garden-ground with cups uplifted, as if pledging one another.

Divinatory Meaning:

The conclusion of any matter in plenty, perfection and merriment; happy issue, victory, fulfilment, solace, healing.

   
The Present Card represents the current state or immediately approaching influence.
The Wheel of Fortune

The four Living Creatures of Ezekiel occupy the angles of the card, and the wheel itself follows other indications of Levi in respect of Ezekiel's vision, as illustrative of the particular Tarot Key. With the French occultist, and in the design itself, the symbolic picture stands for the perpetual motion of a fluidic universe and for the flux of human life. The Sphinx is the equilibrium therein. The transliteration of Taro as Rota is inscribed on the wheel, counterchanged with the letters of the Divine Name - to shew that Providence is imphed through all. But this is the Divine intention within, and the similar intention without is exemplified by the four Living Creatures. Sometimes the sphinx is represented couchant on a pedestal above, which defrauds the symbolism by stultifying the essential idea of stability amidst movement.

Behind the general notion expressed in the symbol there lies the denial of chance and the fatality which is implied therein. It may be added that, from the days of Levi onward, the occult explanations of this card are - even for occultism itself - of a singularly fatuous kind. It has been said to mean principle, fecundity, virile honour, ruling authority, etc. The findings of common fortune-telling are better than this on their own plane.

Divinatory Meaning:

Destiny, fortune, success, elevation, luck, felicity.

   
Hidden Influences - Things that you may not be aware of, or barely be aware of.
Ace of Wands

A hand issuing from a cloud grasps a stout wand or club.

Reversed Meaning:

Fall, decadence, ruin, perdition, to perish also a certain clouded joy.
A sign of birth.

   
Obstacle - This is the challenge.
The Last Judgment

The great angel is here encompassed by clouds, but he blows his bannered trumpet, and the cross as usual is displayed on the banner. The dead are rising from their tombs - a woman on the right, a man on the left hand, and between them their child, whose back is turned. But in this card there are more than three who are restored, and it has been thought worth while to make this variation as illustrating the insufficiency of current explanations. It should be noted that all the figures are as one in the wonder, adoration and ecstacy expressed by their attitudes. It is the card which registers the accomplishment of the great work of transformation in answer to the summons of the Supernal - which summons is heard and answered from within.

Herein is the intimation of a significance which cannot well be carried further in the present place. What is that within us which does sound a trumpet and all that is lower in our nature rises in response - almost in a moment, almost in the twinkling of an eye? Let the card continue to depict, for those who can see no further, the Last judgment and the resurrection in the natural body; but let those who have inward eyes look and discover therewith. They will understand that it has been called truly in the past a card of eternal life, and for this reason it may be compared with that which passes under the name of Temperance.

Reversed Meaning:

Weakness, pusillanimity, simplicity; also deliberation, decision, sentence.

   
External Influences - Attitudes about this situation from people around the querent.
The Tower

Occult explanations attached to this card are meagre and mostly disconcerting. It is idle to indicate that it depicts min in all its aspects, because it bears this evidence on the surface. It is said further that it contains the first allusion to a material building, but I do not conceive that the Tower is more or less material than the pillars which we have met with in three previous cases. I see nothing to warrant Papus in supposing that it is literally the fall of Adam, but there is more in favour of his alternative - that it signifies the materialization of the spiritual word. The bibliographer Christian imagines that it is the downfall of the mind, seeking to penetrate the mystery of God. I agree rather with Grand Orient that it is the ruin of the House of We, when evil has prevailed therein, and above all that it is the rending of a House of Doctrine. I understand that the reference is, however, to a House of Falsehood. It illustrates also in the most comprehensive way the old truth that - except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it.

There is a sense in which the catastrophe is a reflection from the previous card, but not on the side of the symbolism which I have tried to indicate therein. It is more correctly a question of analogy; one is concerned with the fall into the material and animal state, while the other signifies destruction on the intellectual side. The Tower has been spoken of as the chastisement of pride and the intellect overwhelmed in the attempt to penetrate the Mystery of God; but in neither case do these explanations account for the two persons who are the living sufferers. The one is the literal word made void and the other its false interpretation. In yet a deeper sense, it may signify also the end of a dispensation, but there is no possibility here for the consideration of this involved question.

Divinatory Meaning:

Misery, distress, indigence, adversity, calamity, disgrace, deception, ruin. It is a card in particular of unforeseen catastrophe.

   
Suggestion - The recommended course of action. 
9 of Cups

A goodly personage has feasted to his heart's content, and abundant refreshment of wine is on the arched counter behind him, seeming to indicate that the future is also assured. The picture offers the material side only, but there are other aspects.

Divinatory Meaning:

Concord, contentment, physical bien-?tre; also victory, success, advantage; satisfaction for the Querent or person for whom the consultation is made.

   
The Outcome - What will happen if the suggestion is followed.
8 of Swords

A woman, bound and hoodwinked, with the swords of the card about her. Yet it is rather a card of temporary durance than of irretrievable bondage.

Divinatory Meaning:

Bad news, violent chagrin, crisis, censure, power in trammels, conflict, calumny; also sickness.

 
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