I ordered a new Thoth Tarot deck, this one larger than the first one I bought. I typically use a magnifying glass when looking at the cards anyway, but the larger cards provide a better look at Lady Frieda Harris’s interpretations of Crowley’s work. From the colors used to the flow of the cards, her impressions bring forth an emotional resonance unlike any other deck I own.
Swords and Cups comprise today’s reading along with two cards from the Major Arcana as well as one Court card. The overall numerology is 5 or change. Elemental Air and Water are represented signifying our intellectual and emotional presence. The two cards from the suit of Swords involve the astrological sign of Libra, beginning with the 2 representing the Moon in Libra, and ending with the 3 representing Saturn in Libra, moving from peace to sorrow with a Knight and two Majors in between, a change of some kind possibly in awareness taking place.
I like the suit of Swords given that my astrological sign is Libra and because it represents balanced intellect and clarity. The 2 of Swords in the Thoth deck depicts two swords piercing a blue rose as they cross in balance. Two daggers appear above and below, one piercing an upward turned crescent moon, and the other the glyph for Libra. Four geometric symbols appear behind the sword suggesting an evolving intellectual process while angels in prayer adorn both swords’ hilts. The card’s title is Peace illustrated by the swords in balance. A decision has been made and peace and calm have returned.
A winged Knight bursts forth on a white steed holding a golden chalice with a crab balancing on its rim. A peacock appears on the right-hand corner of the card, its tail feathers extending out fully behind it. The Knight of Cups represents an individual who is both self-disciplined and a thrill-seeker. He can be loving and wise as well as insensitive and shallow. Somewhat passive-aggressive, the Knight’s vacillates between a focus on self and others, wishing to do the right thing, but at times becoming caught up in the drama of the moment finding it difficult to let go of what no longer serves.
Card nine from the Major Arcana, The Hermit represents Thoth, Hecate, and the Creator within. He stands on the mountain top in retreat from the world, receiving wisdom from the divinity we all possess within. In alignment, his light of wisdom extends to all.
In the position of hidden influence, The Fool stands ready to take the leap of faith into his journey through form. The Fool represents our infinite potential and the development of the individual through life. He has no expectations as he lives in the present moment, eagerly embracing the diversity of new experiences.
And then we come to the outcome card, the 3 of Swords. Crowley titles this card Sorrow as we see three swords tearing apart a rose, piercing its center. A serpent coils around the handle of the largest sword, offering the possibility of rebirth and renewal, yet the dark colors suggest a lack of clarity or confusion exists. A drama triangle may be represented but the chance of rebirth suggests an opportunity for clarity exists if we balance our intellect with our emotions. As the geometric shapes appear to break around the main sword, the scene suggests that in alignment, the deceptive agendas around us will fall away, replaced by understanding and substantially more dignity than when we began.
We each make a choice when incarnating to either live in service to self or in awareness of our greater unified presence. We make every attempt at living peacefully but occasionally others enter our lives providing a catalyst for something more interesting and at times, confounding and upsetting. Truth is like that. It may not always be pleasant, but it’s far better to live in truth than to continually be drawn into lies and deception.
If ego drives the human experience then the drama becomes real instead of something to merely observe and experience for the lessons it has to teach. The Hermit teaches us to see the world through a higher perspective, experiencing life without judgment. Remaining aligned amid the chaos of the world allows us to experience the world as observers instead of reactors.
We begin in peace and balance, but as time goes on, our innocence is threatened by the drama around us. Alignment in higher self-awareness assures peace amid the chaos as we calmly navigate our experiences irrespective of how emotionally charged they may be. Although the outcome of these experiences can certainly be sorrow, in alignment sorrow falls away, replaced by clarity and vision.