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22 Laws of the Universe

Thread originally posted on the Aeclectic Tarot Forum on 23 Sep 2003, and now archived in the Forum Library.



Diana  23 Sep 2003 
Occasionally, when I read esoteric things, especially those mysterious books written by initiates that poor simple mortals like me do not understand (I read them anyway :D ), I have found sentences referring to the 22 Laws of the Universe.

As there are 22 cards in the Major Arcana, I naturally think they must be somehow connected to the Tarot.

But nowhere can I find any information as to what these 22 Laws are. Can anyone help me, please? 


Diana  23 Sep 2003 
Or does this just "simply" refer to the Kabbal? 


Scorpion  23 Sep 2003 
Well, that was my first thought - I've never heard of the 22 laws (but then I don't read enough!) and that came to mind.

What sort of authors are you finding these references in, Diana? 


krysia322  23 Sep 2003 
I'm curious as well... Never heard of the 22 Laws (of course, I've never heard of a lot of things, lol ;)).

But I'll add a question; how could these laws be valid and/or pertain to something to multi-dimensional as the universe? 


pentunen  23 Sep 2003 
Quote:
But I'll add a question; how could these laws be valid and/or pertain to something to multi-dimensional as the universe? [/b]


I get the feeling the universe is infinite in size, complexity, and detail - I would be very interested in seeing how someone would attempt to sum it all up with any finite set of laws, much less 22 of them...

- pentu 


MeeWah  23 Sep 2003 
Diana: I knew I read somewhere of this, & I think I located one source.

In Manly P. Hall's "The Secret Teachings of All Ages", there is a reference to the laws of universe formed by combinations of 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet. Still hunting for the exact place in the book. Has teeny print so is a bit hard to read through.

Edited to add: The language is very complex & unfortunately, most of it is beyond my comprehension as it deals with qabbalistic references & is interspersed with Hebrew. The reference previously mentioned is contained in this paragraph from Chapter CXXI -The Tree of the Sephiroth:

" According to the mysteries of the Sephiroth, the order of the Creation, or the Divine Lightning Flash which zigzags through the four worlds according to the order of the divine emanations, is thus transcribed: From AIN SOPH, the Nothing and All, the Eternal and Unconditioned Potency, issues Macroprosophus, the Long Face of whom it is written, 'Within His skull exist daily thirteen thousand myriads of worlds which draw their existance from Him and by Him are upheld.'...Macroprosophus, the directionalized will of AIN SOPH, corresponding to Kether, the Crown of the Sephiroth, gives birth out of Himself to the nine lesser spheres of which He is the sum and the overbrooding cause. The 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet, by the various combinations of which the laws of universe are established, constitute the scepter of Macroprosophus which He wields from His flaming throne in the Atziluthic World."

It goes on with very long passages but there is no specific reference to laws per se that I am able to see, unless the laws are connected with the Hebrew alphabet.

In the preceding Chapter CXIII - The Qabbalah, the Secret Doctrine of Israel:

"9. There are twenty-two letters by which the I AM (YAH), the Lord of Hosts, Almighty and Eternal, designed and created by three Sepharim (Numbers, Letters, and Sounds) His Universe, and formed by them all creatures and all those things that are yet to come."

"10. When the Patriarch Abraham had comprehended the great truths, meditated upon them, and understood them perfectly, the Lord of the Universe (Tetragrammaton) appeared to him, called him His friend, kissed him upon the head, and made with him a covenant. First, the covenant was between the ten fingers of his hands, which is the covenant of the tongue (spiritual); second, the covenant was between the ten toes of his feet, which is the covenant of circumcision (material); and God said of him, 'Before I formed thee *** I knew thee.' (Jeremiah i.5)

" Abraham bound the spirit of the twenty-two letters (the Thora) upon his tongue and God disclosed to him their secrets. God permitted the letters to be immersed in water, He burned them in the fire and imprinted them upon the winds. he distributed them among the seven planets and gave them to the twelve zodiacal signs."

Sorry, this is probably not very helpful & even more confusing! 


Melissa`  24 Sep 2003 
Hey Diana,

I just looked up some notes I had written down a while back off of a couple different resources.

One of the things I wrote down was about the Sefer Yetzira- 'Book of Creation' ..

here is what Britannica had to say :D

"...Hebrew: “Book of Creation”), oldest known Hebrew text on white magic and cosmology; it contends that the cosmos derived from the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet and from the 10 divine numbers (sefirot). Taken together, they were said to comprise the “32 paths of secret wisdom” by which God created the universe..."

Other book names:
Sefer ha-bahir "Book of Brightness"
Sefer ha-temuna "Book of Image"

I don't know much about this stuff.. Only the very little I've read on it. So I can't say for sure if this will be found helpful to you. Maybe only give you some things to look into.

~ Amaya 


AmounrA  24 Sep 2003 
I would imagine if universe does have laws , science is better placed to uncover them than tarot.

Morally I don't think there are any universal laws. No law is needed to work out being kind is better than being nasty.

I have heard the tarot described as 22 keys of wisdom or understanding, but I would not consider them to be the only keys available.

Tarot is like a small gully on a massif mountain, as is, I would also conclude, the Qabala . 


augursWell  24 Sep 2003 
The Tarot de Paris(my favorite deck right now) refers to the "22 Cypher" which is the 22 Major Arcana.

Some Kabbalah sources will link the Ten commandments with each of the Ten sephirot, as each commandment has an affinity with the meaning of a particular sephira.

However, I don't remember any references to "22 Laws". I think each of the Major Arcana cards embodies concepts and ideas that might be said to be inclusive of a way of acting or being but that's not really a "law".

Anyway, the number 22 almost always brings the Major Arcana and Hebrew alphabet to my mind. I'm not sure if there is any other set of 22 "things". I'd be interested if you manage to track one down. 


Macavity  26 Sep 2003 
I think 22 is rather a difficult number to find in science. I had hopes it would be some number of dimensions in an exotic grand unification theory but... apparently not? ;)

I did find a further esoteric instance of 22 though... in Enochian Magic (qv). As you are probably aware there are a number of "Tarot" decks based on Enochian angels. Now those guys (the angels) inhabit Four Watchtowers overlooking 30 Aethyrs. But the day to day running of Aethyrs is down to 91 "governors" (4 associated with one Aethyr and 3 with all the rest) Now, of these 91, three governors are not associated with a watchtower, leaving 88 AND... 88/4 = 22! I.E. Twenty Two Enochian Governors per Watchtower. Thus, despite a notable non-standard "Enochian" Tarot having 30 (Aethyric) majors, it is ALSO possible to make a more direct association between the standard 22 major arcana and Enochian angels (in addition to those already implicit for aces, courts and minors). There is even perhaps some commonality of meaning...

In fairness, there is a lot of intermingling of Enochiana with Kaballah, so perhaps some of the associations are due to circular argument? Nevertheless, in the immortal words of Bart Simpson, Aye Caramba! :laugh:

Macavity

P.S. Other searches for "Twenty Twos" unearth references to the "Book of Enoch" and also the legendary Aetheric battles between Buffy - Ooops I mean Crowley and the arch-daemon Chorozon... }) 


Diana  26 Sep 2003 
Great replies here... lots of stuff to explore.

I just want to say that I think I was misunderstood.... I didn't say the Tarot were the 22 Laws of the Universe.... I meant that these 22 Laws that I have read about could COINCIDE with the Tarot - that the Tarot winks its eye to them.....

Themis, the eighth born of the 12 Titans, daughter of Gaia and Ouranos, when she left Delphe, consecrated her life, apparently, to protecting the "22 Laws the Govern the Universe"......

So this notion is certainly not new. But I've also read about it in other books - always fleeting - as if one was supposed to skip over the reference, without really noticing it..... but the trouble is, I have noticed it and I am curious.

Thank you everyone for responding. :) 


Dexter  26 Sep 2003 
You have me curious also. It sounds familiar to me too. I have my two sons researching it also as they are curious. The one is interested in Eastern Philosophy and and is sure there was a reference to these laws in one of his books on I Ching. The oldest is majoring in history and philosophy at university and he's sure he's run across a reference to these laws also. Any way you have started a new family hunt for info. I'll let you know what our results are.

What fun!!!

Dexter 


Diana  26 Sep 2003 
Dexter: Perhaps Law No. 1 is "Seek and thee shalt find.."

Great that your sons are delving into this as well. (Are they interested in Tarot as well?) 


Dexter  27 Sep 2003 
The oldest one at university has not shown a great interest but is quite willing to help his Mom if it means spending more time with books and research. Now my second son who's 16 and interested in Eastern Philosophy has shown great insight when looking at the cards but so far hasn't indicated any interest in a deck for himself. My youngest she is only now beginning to show any interest at all. Boys seem to be the only thing that holds her attention for any length of time. But time will tell. 


augursWell  27 Sep 2003 
According to the Encyclopedia Mythica:

http://www.pantheon.org/mythica.html

"Themis is one of the daughters of Uranus and Gaia. She is the personification of divine right order of things as sanctioned by custom and law. She has oracular powers and it is said that she build the oracle at Delphi. By Zeus she is the mother of the Horae and the Moirae. Themis is depicted as a stern looking woman, blindfolded and holding a pair of scales and a cornucopia. The Romans called her Justitia."

Which all makes sense with Diana's rememberances of 22 Laws. Now I just want to know what those 22 Laws are. :) 


Diana  28 Sep 2003 
Quote:
Originally posted by augursWell
Now I just want to know what those 22 Laws are. :)


You too, huh? ;) 


augursWell  28 Sep 2003 
Quote:
Originally posted by Macavity
I did find a further esoteric instance of 22 though... in Enochian Magic (qv). As you are probably aware there are a number of "Tarot" decks based on Enochian angels. Now those guys (the angels) inhabit Four Watchtowers overlooking 30 Aethyrs. But the day to day running of Aethyrs is down to 91 "governors" (4 associated with one Aethyr and 3 with all the rest) Now, of these 91, three governors are not associated with a watchtower, leaving 88 AND... 88/4 = 22! I.E. Twenty Two Enochian Governors per Watchtower . Thus, despite a notable non-standard "Enochian" Tarot having 30 (Aethyric) majors, it is ALSO possible to make a more direct association between the standard 22 major arcana and Enochian angels (in addition to those already implicit for aces, courts and minors). There is even perhaps some commonality of meaning...


Macavity,

Thanks for this info, by the way. You've created yet another path of inquiry for me that I hadn't pursued before.

I am confused by the math here though. 30 Aethyrs time 3 equals 90 plus 4 equals 94. Right? Remove three and you have 91 not 88. Did I misunderstand?

I found some translations of the Book of Enoch on the web but if you have a short answer to this I'd be interested. Are the four watchtowers related to the four suits of the tarot originally or by derivation?

What's a good source for listing/enumerating all of these Angels? I'm a total newbie as far as Enochian Tarot.

Thanks,
Aug.

P.S. Still hoping someone can find those 22 Laws somewhere. :)
(taps his foot, hums a little tune, looks around the room, back at the screen, waiting, waiting, waiting...) :D 


lunaperse  28 Sep 2003 
i don't know about the 22 laws.. although im sure one of my numerology books listed a whole heap of things connected to 22 (not laws of the universe though.. bad book :P)

but the towers thing? shouldnt it be (3*29)+4 = 87+4 = 91? 


Macavity  28 Sep 2003 
Perhaps it was badly expressed. Thirty Aethers in total - Of which, 29 have three governors and one has four governors i.e. 29*3 + 1*4 = 87 + 4 = 91 etc. ;)

Enochiana is just an alternative way (from the Kaballah) of arranging the Tarot in a heirarchy of cards (corresponding to Enochian Angels). Both Enochia and Kaballah share quite a lot of basic principles though. Roughly speaking, the idea is of a hierarchical system of containers. As the top are Four elements corresponding to the Four aces, which contain (each) the 4 courts and then the 9 minors of each suite. The majors can usually also be fitted into the system somewhere too! ;)

For more ideas on the Angels see e.g. http://www.golden-dawn.org/enochian.html and for how this might be applied to Tarot see e.g. http://www.supertarot.co.uk/magic/enoch.htm Or do a web search on terms like enochian and tarot etc.

A useful book is Hyatt and DuQuette's "Enochian World of Aleister Crowley": http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ISBN=1561840297/ref=nosim/aeclectic/ Ignore the "sex" bit in the subtitle. It's not very relevant... or very exciting? :laugh:

Macavity 


augursWell  29 Sep 2003 
Thanks Macavity for the followup information.

Yes, Diana, me too. :)

I found something from the laws of the Fraternity of the Rosy cross.
http://www.levity.com/alchemy/maier_la.html
It's a translation from the 1600's mentioning Themis and the importance of Law and then goes on to set some laws for the Brotherhood, probably not what we're talking about??

Also, I ran out of time but those interested might want to try this Google search link:

http://www.google.com/search?q=harrison+greek+themis+law+22&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8

Later... 


augursWell  29 Sep 2003 
It's amazing what you can find on the Internet these days. :)

themis, pl. themistes something divinely ordained 


The 22 Laws of the Universe thread was originally posted on 23 Sep 2003 in the Talking Tarot board, and is now archived in the Forum Library. Read the active threads in Talking Tarot, or read more archived threads.

 


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