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LS Secret Tarot - Death

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LS Secret Tarot - Death


I thought I would start a new thread on DEATH! I really love this card. It took me a while to see that there are monks carrying coffins on their shoulders throughout the card. At first I thought that they were little runes similar to Stonehendge. I also like the skulls scattered about the ground almost casual like they are rocks.
I feel that this card is more active than some other decks like the RWS. The horse looks frightened with his wide red eyes and Death looks like he is really for action! Oh, and that bloody stormy background is perfect!
What are your thoughts...?
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This is probably one of my favorite Death cards.....it is very ominous-looking, with the dark stormclouds in the background and skulls scattered at Death's feet. The expression of horror on the horse's face is really disturbing....what is he looking at that is making his react this way???

Death is the reaper...he is prepared for battle, eager to resume his hunt for new victims...he will start by claiming those who fear him the most. Fear of Death may be translated to fear of Change, which is the most commonly accepted meaning of this card.

This card reminds me that it is important not to live in fear...that change is a natural part of life...one chapter ends and the next one begins, not unlike the cycle of life and death of our physical selves.

I would like to add more but...need to look again in better light!

Thanks hyatt for starting this thread....one of my favorite Secret cards!!!

Luna
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I too did not notice the people carrying the coffin upon their shoulder in the top left hand corner of this card. What I find to be quite unnerving is that there is a skull placed on top of the coffin... and there are skulls lain around the ground. It is almost as though this particular graveyard is one in which the bodies are not buried properly... perhaps this might symbolise the dead as not really being dead? Life springs from death?

And the horse in this card looks absolutely mad with insanity. Its eyes bulge and its mouth is twisted in a rictus of horror. It also looks as though it is jumping around wildly... a triumphant Death riding on its back, hoisting his massive scythe high above the air.

It would seem that the coffin bearers in the distance cannot see Death on his/her horse... as they seem to be walking forward, and in a state of solemn grief... calm.
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I noticed the monks carrying the coffin when I got the deck. For some reason, I imagine this is a battlefield and that's why there are skulls littering the ground. The monks are carrying away the dead. However, given the state of decompossition (sp?) it must be an OLD battlefield, or one long in use. Kind of a weird combination of graveyard and battlefield... I get a weird feeling from it.
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Hmmm, an old battlefield is interesting. I read a greek story where Hermes (who led the dead to the underworld) had quite a task getting some soldier shades to leave a battlefield because horse shades could not get into Hades and the soldiers refused to leave their loyal mounts. So, perhaps this horse senses the shades of his own kind. The monks make me think of a different time period, like say during the Plague, in which case the horse might be reacting to the smell of rot and disease and Death would be near his nadir. Perhaps that explains his look of triumph, or maybe that is for the single harvest of the person in the coffin. As for reading with this depiction, I think it empasizes the inexorabiltiy of Death, the futility of denial. A lot of books empasize what I see as the aftermath of Death- the regeneration, the renewal that comes when that which is no longer viable has been cleared away. But I rather like a card that dares to pause at the Death moment itself and say, first you have to allow yourself to grieve. This is the time to carry your dead to it's resting place, whatever it is that may have died (a dream?, an ideal?)- and to mourn. Let it rain, let it rain hard. Then it can clear.
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Hi-
I justed wanted to add that I thought that there was three funeral processions. The first one is obvious in the background but then I see one that is one a little harder to see right on the horizon line on the left. Right above the horse's knee is the hood of a monk and the small skull is right above that. It looks like those monks have on belts or shield that might have skulls on them too.
In the main coffin being carried I think to the left there is a small glimps of a monk going the other way with a coffin too. I think that there are three. That other monk is smaller like he is a little further off in the distance.
I like the idea that it was from another time like the plague. It would make since that death would be so strong and victorious. I thought of it as a battlefield - without considering the fact the skulls would have to decompose untill someone here brought that up. I guess I also see it as the layers of death. I think about the fact that the immediate land I walk on had many other lives sometimes. I live in an area by a small river. After it floods I walk down to it and you can find arrow heads. It is well known that there at one time was a small indian village around where I live. Sometimes I wonder where they were buried and what happened on the land that I am standing on - it is sort of creepy. Anyway, I see a little of that in this card - the layers of other lives and deaths through time.
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I can see two processions but not three............. Off to dig out my magnifying glass.............
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Quote:
Originally posted by hyatt
I justed wanted to add that I thought that there was three funeral processions.
Oh, I had never noticed that, but now I see it!

I also think that the procession in the middle of the card behind the horses knee would emphasise the battlefield aspect. It is almost as though those specific monks/hooded men are walking inside a trench.

Or perhaps it is just that they are stood inside a grave? A huge grave?
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The monks in the foreground seem particularly interesting. The skull emblems make me think that this is their specialty, which makes me think of the plague again. Both because they would be kept plenty busy and because others would be more than grateful to let someone else care for the bodies. On a positive note, though, they seem to have reached a spiritual place where Death no longer frightens them. I don't get the sense that they wear the emblem to warn others away but to show that they have faced and transcended the "threat" of death.
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(wow, i'm really bringing this group back from the underworld...hope no one minds)

I don't know...but for me it seems the Death is riding on the water. Look at the edge where the 'ground' meets the hill where the monks are. It looks like water. And the skulls could be drowning. There's no reflex ('cause death isn't a living thing, therefore it has no reflex & no shadow) but still looks like water for me. A dirty water, probably full of rest of dead bodies.
Then i agree with the Plague...we know water was a very common way to spread a disease many years ago. Mosquitos that carry diseases put their eggs on the water, worms & bacteries live in water and so on.

Water is, as well, where all the life comes from. So Death and life are together...you die, you drown in this water but from this SAME water you come again.

What do you think? Am i going mad like the horse?

Yuko
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