Tarot Chapter 3

Chapter 3: The Characters - Major Arcana 1 - 10

There seem to be 11 primary archetypal characters in my
inner universe. These are matched by the first eleven cards of
the Major Arcana of the Tarot, as I perceive them. I have made a
number of changes in my own personal interpretation of the deck
as they seem to have been dictated by a combination of my dreams,
my preoccupation with Art, my study of the Occult in general and
the Tarot in particular, and my love of various other applicable
sources, including Rock 'n Roll, Jung, Martin Luther King, Art, Baha'u'llah, and others.
The unconsious being what it is, my dialogue between it and
my consious is not certifiably consistant. Often, characters
with strong resemblences to these major ones will appear with
other names. There are always good reasons for these
discrepencies, though said reasons are not always clear.
Conversely, characters with these names will sometimes appear with
other characteristics, or representing other archetypal energies,
again with reasons, but these appearances are far less in
frequency than the first type. Then too, some dreams are marked
by the appearances of entirely new characters, though, since I began studying the Tarot, two and a half years ago at this
writing, (Dec, 86), the following are definitely the ones by far most consistant:
Major Arcana No. 0. The Addict. Reversed, called the Clown.
Traditionally, the Fool. My proper name for him is Brian
Quasimoto Jones. Blue eyes, blond hair, long, in a "Beatle Cut"
with bangs over his forehead, very pale, fair skin. When
unattractive, he apears hunchbacked, though still lovable,
otherwise seductively beautiful as any eternal youth can be. He
is Puer Aternus, Bacchus, the temptation of infinite
possibilities, or else, when hunchbacked, the pathos of the
burnt-out hippie who must continue believing himself capable of
transcending his mortality. His charisma, when it comes, comes
from his unawareness of this power struggle over his own
mortality. Then he becomes truly the symbol of innocence
continuely renewed; the transcendence of death that is at the
source of all religion. This process correctly implemented seems
to give him virtually unlimited power of seduction. Like all my
characters, he bears a strong vein of symbolism in the rock
world, a throw-back to the days before my involvement with the
Tarot, when rock heros provided me almost exclusively with the
archetypal material necessary for the essential Misterium
Conjunictum. In his case especially, the parrallel is easily
drawn. His Astrological connection is Piscies, the symbol of self
injury as smbolic transformation from the physical realm to the
astral. The Addict is the spiritual condition from whence we all
come, that stage in human development incapable of honouring the
distinction between the individual, consious ego and the total
Self. In the sense that he is like the nothingness behind all
somethingness, this symbol is similar to Ptah of the Egyptians,
the god who was before all other gods, or the Ain Soph Aur of the
Quabalists, the aethyr or original veil from whence comes the
first emanation of god.
Major Arcana No. 1. Dom (I believe, short for Dominion).
Reversed, same. Traditionally, The Magus. My proper name for
him is Dom. Marble white skin, very dark hair and eyes.
Distinctly hetrosexual. Usually quite rockabilly. Of late he seems to have affected an increasingly American appearance. At first he was very financially poor and dressed in rags of a punk
nature, though lately he has taken to wearing white tee shirts and black levis of an uban, working class bent and cleaner look.
He is clearly the personification of the ideal self, the symbol
of wholeness, integration and perfection on all planes. Also,
the undisputed leader of the rest. Osiris, Appolonius, Hermes
and Christ. The bearer of Recovery. He is, in my galaxie of archetypes, closest to what Aliester Crowley calls, "the Holy Guardian Angel", the conversation of which formed absolutely the
cornerstone of his interpretation of Magick. He is the guide,
the seer, and in the sense is closely connected with Jung's
"Philemon" (the inner guide), The Hermit, who is explained at length later, under the number seven. In fact, were it not necessary for the Magus
to embody the total individual, he would probably be
indistinguishable from the Hermit, for he personifies that voice
of wisdom within each of us, the voice that never lies.
Unfortunate that we listen to it far too seldom. He always
appears with tremendous cathartic energy and a great feeling of accompaning personal transformation, and leaves one distinctly
wishing he would appear more often. His astrological connection
is the Sun, the source of all light and enlightenment, growth and
harvest. I believe Crowley was correct about his Conversation of
the Holy Guardian Angel; the product of spiritual evolution
should be lessons that allow us each to accept our own personal Magus as our true guide.
Major Arcana No. 2 The Sorceress. Reversed, the Carousel Girl
(In reference to the first dream I had of her, a script dream).
Three proper names, in order of accompaning cathartic power:
Ricky, least powerful, a very attractive young girl; Erin, more
powerful and sophisticated - also more grown up; and Raleigh my
cosmic twin - extremely powerful. Occasionally changing her age,
she appears sometimes as a very young girl, sometimes as an old
woman, but usually seems to be in her early twenties. She is
always thin, with blond hair, usually long, and very pale skin,
often to the point of transluscency. This figure I believe is
what I call the inner anima, my female ideal, having two poles;
the Sorceress is the guardian of the inner door on the path
between my inner and outer self. (The other pole is explained at
length in Major Arcana No. 6.) She is the bringer of messages
from the Mother Goddess, my vision of ideal womanhood entirely
untainted by my experience with females in the actual, physical
world. A mysterious, complex and potentially dangerous figure,
she can be terrifyingly seductive when viewed in her purest
forms. Her astrological connection is the Moon.
Major Arana No. 3 The Fanatic. Reversed, same general name, I
think. Traditionally, this card is called the Hanged Man and
occupies number 12 in the Major Arcana. But through a series of
dream connections and occult meditations, it became apparant
to me that this card belongs here. Numerologically, 12 reduces
to 3, and 3 is a number of great energy and thrust, it's ruling
planet having been assigned by me to Mars. For a male such as
myself, I will relate the following information concerning this
card. I'm not sure how it relates in a woman's psycie, I have a
feeling it might be quite different. It would be interesting to
hear such an opinion. However, for a man, when this card is
right-side up (in other words, well aspected) it is male, and can
represent an energy of great help, particularly in times of
extreme need, or in times of great stress or trial. He also
seems to come with a strong feeling of competition or challenge.
He is the feeling of obsession that is directly connected to
one's sense of one's own greatness. He is of fairly small
stature, extremely high energy, quite adolescent but not
particularly homosexual, always has bright, red hair which is
usually cut quite short and rather punk, and usually wears
glasses. His name is often Blaine, but I'm not yet clear on
this. In reverse aspect, this card appears as a woman, and has
very much the same appearance except is quite tall (though fairly
thin), is quite androgynous and always dresses like a man, or
boy. The same short, red, punk hair, glasses and high energy
level. She is still sometimes called Blaine, though more often
Kwinn, and frequently refered to as the Mannequinn. She
represents the agressive, forceful aspect of the anima or woman
stretched or pushed beyond a healthy level into a disticntly bi-
sexual and usually perverse sadistic realm. I must say in her
defense, however, that she occasionally exhibits a side which is
very conducive to a chummy, warm, strictly platonic relationship
which is invariably quite revealing of esoteric knowledge,
particularly about oneself. It is a shame that her blessings so
often seem inextricably connected to her connotations of extreme
self injury. (Not to herself, to yourself!) Astrological
connection is Mars.
Major Arcana No. 4, The Protector. Also called the Thegn, after
the Saxon witches. Proper name, the Moose, reversed, the Mule.
Traditionally, the Emperor. A sort of perennial roomate, he
usually goes by the given name of Daryl. He has two distinct
incarnations, one very large and potentially frightening,
completely heterosexual and working class, with a strong feeling of the biker club world. In his other role his is much smaller
and quite thin, though with very much the same implications
symbolically. His massive form is by far his most frequent incarnation. If
he kept in better shape he'd be a perfect candidate for big
league football or hockey. He is Jupiter, Zeus, Thor. Entirely
self taught, he is very bright under a deceiving slowness. Daryl
is a hard core biker, of the Harley Davidson variety, and I dare
say in his more diminutive appearance he has a strong James Dean
streak, though not as quick or bright. These "thin rebel" connotations connect him somewhat in physical appearance with Major Arcana No. 1. Stubborn and tenacious either way, with a fair share of bodily tatoos and a warmth that obstructs the term "macho". He is generally good-natured and slow to anger, but when his temper starts to smoulder he is positively terrifying. This is his "Moose" aspect. For a man, integrating and individuating a healthy and satisfying relationship with Daryl represents a
challenge of absolute paramount difficulty, the consumation of
which is supremely satisfying and essential to a successful
passage into adulthood. His astrological connection is Jupiter.
Major Arcana No. 5 The Nymph. Reversed, the Queen, or
Darlequinn. Proper name, Lorien. Traditionally, this card was
number 10, the Wheel of Fortune, but through a series of psychic
meditations, dreams and revelations, I came to the realization that cards number 5 and 10 should be reversed. Numerologically, the number 5 is
indicative of the never-ending fluctuations of desire and
retribution, a karmic outpouring of the human attempt to
intervene in the forces of nature and truth, and unfortunately an
all too familiar constellation in human archetypal experience.
Lorien is the personification in my life of Set, Loki or Lucifer.
Quabalistically, this is the working out of the lesson of Geburah
and Chesed, the balancing of ones moral wisdom. Transcending
this situation leads to number 6, the resolution of one's natural
need to understand the phenomenon of Love. The mechanisim by
which this granite is worn away is called Temptation, and it
seems to take two forms. In one aspect, Lorien appears as a
blond girl with very dark eyes, indeed, difficult to distinguish
from the Sorceress, and of course if we examine the situation
numerologically, we can easily see a sublimation, or dilution of
the forces of number two, the Sorceress, the full, untainted
power of the anima, working through the energy of the Fanatic
(Kwinn, number three), because two plus three equals five.
Lorein usually appears in her female form with a very simple,
transluscent, one-piece-little-girl dress, and nothing else.
Noticably absent are shoes and make-up, without exception. She
is very waif-like and silent, also very inert, in fact barely
percievable. She is the incarnation of mischief, and her
enigmatic smile betrays no motives. In her opposite aspect she is
the drag queen, and always with black hair, usually eyes that are
so light blue as to be virtually colourless, and wearing silk
stockings, high heels, leather mini-skirt, etc. everythng black,
including black make-up, and is the very dangerous seemingly
omnipotent eternal adolescent, also an addict, and bears a great
deal in common with a much more volatile and much less
charasmatic Major Arcana No. 0. This figure seems generally
accompanied by a volcanic desire of daemonic magnitude. The
Astrological significance is the planet Uranus.
Major Arcana No. 6. The Companion. Reversed, same.
Traditionally, The Lovers. Proper name, Lindsey. Actually, her
full name is Lindsey Louise Cerlwzie, as was specifically
revealed to me in a dream. Lindsey first unveiled her true
identity to me in a very powerful dream in the Spring of 86 in
which she read my Tarot, and told me she would always be with me.
Without a doubt she has appeared far more frequently than any
other character I have ever dreamt about, before or since. She
always appears with black or very dark brown hair, light skin and
usually with very dark eyes, although occasionally she will
appear with very light blue eyes, and I am convinced this
descrepancy (and resemblence to No. 5!) bears great significance but I haven't yet unraveled it. She represents exactly what her title implies. She is the Companion, the perennial support, eternal comforter; can also be
construed as the female ideal, the eternal girl friend, literally
the dream girl, with no pun intended. She is the alter ego of
Major Arcana number two, and guards the outer door to the pathway
between the inner and outer self. She is the Mother Godesses
first gift to me, and the prime medium through which I may
converse with Her. She is my unconsious image of the female
after having mingled with the reality of life and digested a
soul-interpretation of its lessons. A very flexible, complex
creature of far reaching implication, her degree of
attractiveness varies greatly, depending on my emotional and
spiritual climate as she seems to be the most accessable mirror
of my soul. An encyclopedea of information, or far better yet,
poetry, can and has been written about her infinite variety of
appearances in human experience. She is represented
astrologically, of course, by the planet Venus.
These first seven seem to be the most important, and the ones
that appear the most. In a seperate, secondary catagory then,
lie interpretations of the next four.
Major Arcana No. 7. The Philosopher. Reversed, the Beat
Philosopher. Traditionally, the Hermit. This card was situated
at number nine, but through a series of meditations, dreams and
psychic experiences, it was revealed to me that this card's true
position is actually number seven. Seven is the largest prime
number among the original nine digits, and that gives this card a
peculiar relationship to the number one. Seven has always been a
number of great magical significance historically, and is
invariably associated with hidden wisdom revealed, hidden magical
power, imagination, mystery, transcendence, intuition and the
spiritual realm generally. I believe that with the Piscian Age
drawing to a close and the Aquarian Age drawing near, it's
important to shed the notion of the Sage as the one who is
vaulted away from society at large and pursuing some near-
impossible spiritual quest on some distant mountaintop or secret
monastary. So, in the name of pursuing at least my own better
attitudes, I perfer to think of him as the Philosopher, rather
than the Hermit. In my astral journeys, this archetype has
fairly short, curly, blond hair and a short beard, a markedly
receeding hairline, dark blue eyes, a very soft spoken manner,
wears loose fitting clothing, is a vegetarian. Contrary to what
one might think, he generally appears as a fairly young man,
perhaps in his early thirties. He is the revealer of hidden
knowledge, the voice inside that never lies, the Magus' closest
ally. He is that aspect of the Magus that functions as spiritual
guide. He is Merlin, a symbol of wisdom in the collective
unconsious that predates Christianity. He is therefore a
personification of the Watcher, the one who, as opposed to
expecting an active God who maniuplates history to save man,
rather, is continually present in myriad forms; a God, therefore,
whose appearance is dependent on our own continued vigilance.
Badly aspected, his penchant for esoteric thought can imprison
one in the mire of meaningless details. In essence, this is only
a colourful and complicated mask for a selfish need for escape.
His astrological connection is the planet Neptune.
Major Arcana No. 8. The Driver. Reversed, the same.
Traditionally, The Chariot, or Victory. This card is very
important in that it's symbols are the ones that actualize
spiritual lessons in the day to day experiences of human life.
This card has been placed at this number because eight has always
invoked the forces of oganization, status, analysis, higher
mental faculties and wordly esteem, and this is what the Driver
teaches. The Driver is the last of the original ten archetypes
to concern himself with the experiences of the physical world.
It has been revealed to me that Numbers 1 to 10 of the Major
Arcana are all archetypal beings as exemplified by the ten
planets. The remaining twelve cards of the Major Arcana, 11 to
21 plus 0 are representative of archetypal experiences, and their
astrological connections are with the twelve zodiac signs.
Therefore the name of this card has been changed from the Chariot
to the Driver, as this card invokes the form of a being rather
than a place. The Driver is fairly small in stature, with short,
dark hair, muscular, masculine, with a bearing of great dignity.
He has dark eyes, a peculiar accent and wears an as yet
indecipherable uniform. His Astological connection is the planet
Mercury. It has always been the custom for the victorious army
or team, upon returning home from the battle or tournament, to
drive the chariots through the streets of the city, the crowds
showering them with tributes, cheers and flowers. This is no
different from the ticker tape parade that we use today to honour
Olympic teams, Astronauts, anyone whom we feel captures our need
to express great worthiness, esteem and exaultation. These are
the aspects of human experience that the Driver gets us in touch
with. He is the driver, as one says, "So and so is driven"
meaning, "filled with great ambition". Also the driver connotes
the aura of the chauffer, the helper, the valet, the one who
provides aid to one's sense of ambition and worldly esteem.
There are many subtle and not so subtle approaches to this
archetype. Which one you use can have far reaching implications
in your worldly fortune and karma. I believe it's important that
the power of Number 2, the Sorceress, is mediated through the
influence of Number 4, the Protector, for a healthy approach to
the Driver (2 x 4 = 8). I also believe it is very important that
as the ideal self is invoked through the power of Number 1, the
Magus, that it should be mediated through the thoughtful wisdom
of Number seven, the Philosopher, in order to establish a healthy
esteem and karma (1 + 7 = 8). These numerological patterns
deserve meditation in that they provide clues to many others that
may be helpful in arriving at a personal and accomplished
approach to one's spiritual program.
Major Arcana No. 9. The Judge. Reversed, same. Traditional
name, Justice. This name has been changed from Justice to Judge
for the same reason as is explained in Number 8 above, namely
that this card represents an archetypal being rather than an
archetypal experience. His true number is, indeed nine, for nine
is the number of completion, of supreme spiritual awareness, of
worldly compassion, of integration on a third octave of the
energy that begins as obsession with Number 3, the Fanatic and
reaches it's first resolution in Number 6, the Companion. Nine
is the number of the one who has arrived at the knowledge of the
true essence of things, it is the number of universality, of
intergration, of the awareness of the total whole. This is a
very important number in the Baha'i faith, in that it signifies
justice, which by their description is "the appearance of unity
among all people". The Judge has for his astrological
significance Pluto, the guardian of the gate to the land of the
dead. This has been greatly misinterprited in recent years, and
it is best to understand the Egyptian interpretation of Anubis,
who was much more than simply the lord of the underworld. He was
not a devil at all, in the Christian sense, he was the one who
watched over the soul while it was out of the body, whether
between incarnations, during astral projections or even simply
under the influence of anasthetics. The Egyptians were very
preoccupied with the issue of morality, in fact the rise of their
empire has been described as synonymous with the rise of human
awareness of morality itself. They did not see the land of the
dead as some kind of horrible, foul smelling land of eternal
fire. Their spiritual value system having formed long before the
connection of Greek rationalism with the dualistic thesis of the
Christians, the Egyptians saw reward and punishment as something
far beyond the simple "you're either good or bad" routine. In
this sense the Judge is an incarnation of Thoth, the scribe of
the soul, who placed one's soul on a balancing scale at the time
of one's death. Thoth then read aloud to the other gods what
that soul was proported to have absorbed through it's experiences
on Earth this time around. At the other end of the scale was a
feather. If the soul weighed more, it had absorbed too much bad
karma. Osiris stood as apologist, to defend the deceased in
light of his or her finer points. This number can be seen as a
pinacle position in one's ability to surmount the realm of human
morality, or the Geburah, Chesed plane on the Quabalistic Tree of
Life. The concept of the Judge is a very subtle and
sophisticated one, and it takes much spiritual work to come to a
true understanding of it's implications.
Major Arcana No. 10. The Yogi. Reversed, same. Traditional
name, The Heirophant. This card is switched with Wheel of
Fortune. This is partially explained in number 5, the Nymph.
Here we come to the first double digit number, being a
combination of 1, the Magus, and 0 the Addict. And indeed, we
find that the number is a representation of the all-important
link between the the individual concious ego, or ideal man, and
the all-encompassing Self, the nothingness that preceeds all
existance. The Hindu interpretation of the word Yoga means
"link", and the study of Yoga is, in its totality, the study of
the relationship between the individual and the totality of the
cosmos. Attainment on this plane is the perfect understanding
of the nature of God, or at least as perfect an understanding as
is probably possible in human form. So, whereas in the number 8 we have
reached the zenith of accomplishment the physical world, and in
number 9 we have reached the zenith of wisdom on the moral plane,
here with number 10 we have reached the zenith of understanding
in the spiritual realm. We have joined the beginning with the
end, the one with the zero, the something with the nothing, and
as the Malkuth of one plane is the Kether of the next, so may our
journey start all over again. In my dreams and revelatory
experiences, the Yogi comes as more of a presence than an actual
physical embodiment. One could say that whenever a dream is felt
to have that transpersonal aura to it, a feeling that what
has been communicated is certainly beyond simply intellectual processes,
that feeling that one has just witnessed something really true,
then the Yogi is present. This experience seems capable of
taking an unlimited number of forms and often comes in unexpected
times and places. I believe it is behind all true artistic
inspiration, and of course behind all spiritual revealation.
Perhaps it is best then, that the details of the Yogi's true face remain hidden in its details, for we should always keep in mind that there is
no single religion that has the exclusive rights in the interpretation
of God's will. In our era, to be spiritually prejudiced is a
dangerous thing. As wonderful as the Tarot is as a
representation of the universality of the archetypes of the
collective unconcious, the simple fact is that no one else can
really describe God's face to you. The human race is rushing
relentlessly towards a vision of unity, and we are quickly becoming
members of the same community. It is important that we already
begin to think and act as if that goal has been accomplished, for
in our era it is inevitable that events on one side of the world
have repercussions on the other. The Yogi's face then, like the
beard of the Macroprossopus in the Quabala, is at once a
universally recognizable form to all people of all times and
places, and yet takes a truly personal form to each individual.
One's relationship with God is, ultimately something that no one
can really interfere with. This is why the genuine spiritual
quest is so terribly difficult, and why we all have such an
overwhelming urge to simply resign from the burden of human
choices and let some prefabricated nonsense drag us into an
apathetic situation in which political organizations get mistaken
for spiritual movements. My experience has been that the key to the understanding of life involves a serious attempt to grasp on a spiritual level what the number ten implies, with it's illustration of the relationship between the idealization of the conscious self (No. 1), and the expression of the limitless totality (Number 0).