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Severed Heads in Liber T deck

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Severed Heads in Liber T deck


I'm new to Aeclectic, and apologize if this is the wrong forum for this question:

I'm new to the Thoth, and just got my first Thoth deck and a Liber T deck. I notice a lot of severed heads in the Liber T minors illustrations. The Liber T 5 and 7 of swords, 2 of spheres, and 5 of cups all show decapitations, but especially the 2 of spheres shows a large figure carrying his severed head under his arm. Is there some symbolic significance to severed heads?

I know the Queen of Swords in the Thoth also carries a severed head, and I was able to accept that even knowing as little as I do about the meaning of the card, but I find the sheer number of decapitations in the Liber T puts me off, and I might have to give up the deck unless someone can shed some light on this for me. Anyone?
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This thread may show some light on the reasons for the images on the minors

http://www.tarotforum.net/showthread.php?t=85073
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Quote:
Originally Posted by share3 View Post
I'm new to Aeclectic, and apologize if this is the wrong forum for this question:

I'm new to the Thoth, and just got my first Thoth deck and a Liber T deck. I notice a lot of severed heads in the Liber T minors illustrations. The Liber T 5 and 7 of swords, 2 of spheres, and 5 of cups all show decapitations, but especially the 2 of spheres shows a large figure carrying his severed head under his arm. Is there some symbolic significance to severed heads?

I know the Queen of Swords in the Thoth also carries a severed head, and I was able to accept that even knowing as little as I do about the meaning of the card, but I find the sheer number of decapitations in the Liber T puts me off, and I might have to give up the deck unless someone can shed some light on this for me. Anyone?
There are free e-book editions of Crowley's Book of Thoth online. You can read Crowley's analyses of the cards in question and decide whether decapitation depictions are justified. Personally, I think too many decapitations may reduce the impact of a somewhat disturbing image.

ETA. Also, check out Grigori's link.
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Hey share3. In the case of the Liber T, the images illustrate the astrological correspondences that are displayed at the top, Jupiter in Capricorn for the 2 of Spheres, Venus in Aquarius for the 5 of Swords, and Moon in Aquarius for the 7 of Swords. It seems to me the severed heads usually represent some negative aspect when they're present. I'm not a deep student of the deck though, so they may have additional meanings of which I'm unaware. Paul Huson's Mystical Origins of the Tarot has some great information in the section on the Minor Arcana. He includes information from the Picatrix, which was a primary source for the Liber T minors, and compares that with meanings by Etteilla, Mathers, Golden Dawn, and Waite.
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Thanks, everyone, for the links and clues. I finally found the Liber T study group index, and there was a post about the 2 of spheres which gave me some hope for my relationship with this deck. I will also pm Scion about his study guide, but it sounds like he's not giving it out anymore.
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Severed Heads in Liber T deck


Try doing a Google search for Scion's guide. I think that's how I found it after realizing he wasn't on the site anymore.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Abrac View Post
Hey share3. In the case of the Liber T, the images illustrate the astrological correspondences that are displayed at the top, Jupiter in Capricorn for the 2 of Spheres, Venus in Aquarius for the 5 of Swords, and Moon in Aquarius for the 7 of Swords. .
And they relate to the decans and some of the old imagery of those decans (the associated sytems) ... and some of those are quiet bizzare ... to set the image in the 'memory/unconcious interface'.

I'm sure there are heads around in there, a dude carrying his head, etc ... other unusual 'Boschian' stuff.

I would look it up but havent time at the moment, anyway ... a good exercise for share3.

Scions site and tables are still up anen't they?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LRichard View Post
Personally, I think too many decapitations may reduce the impact of a somewhat disturbing image.
Yes, it defeats the purpose ( of being a 'memory tag' for a specific card ) ... unless the purpose is to tag the whole deck
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I know the artwork of the Liber T can seem intimidating when you first see it and it does seem to put a few people off. In total there are 5 cards that show severed heads, Queen, 5 and 7 Swords, 2 Spheres and 5 Cups. I've drawn them all at one time or another. Have you read through the LWB to the Thoth and applied it to the Liber T? I keep a copy of the Thoth LWB with my Liber T because it is one of the best LWB's I've ever read and I still refer to it as well as the Liber T LWB.

Most Thoth books can be used with the Liber T, there are only some of the keywords that have been changed. But, for me, it is the smaller images on the Minors that make this deck come alive.

2 Spheres - Change- Jupiter in Capricorn, According to Scion's PDF Guide, he is a primitive warrior, carrying his own head, dressed in a skin loincloth, with a lapwing on his shoulder and a scarab beetle drawn on his chest.

These are my impressions of the card:- The scarab beetle is for rebirth. This whole card is about change, he's striding forward, seems to be on a sort of path or road, knife blade down, but he needs to be aware - money is dropping from his pouch, there is the Yin/Yang symbol in front front of him, the snake twisting around them. He might be headless but he is very much alive. There is so much more happening in this card.

Take the cards out that disturb you, write down what you see then read the LWB's - check out the Thoth forum for books that are recommended, maybe read the Book of Thoth online (not all in one sitting though ), the Liber T really is a fascinating deck once you get into it.
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Thanks GoldenWolf, I didn't know Scion's guide was online. I found it, wow, there's a lot of information there, and I'm looking forward to reading it.

Emily, yes, I did try reading both the Thoth LWB and the Liber T LWB with the cards. I've only just started, but it seemed to me that the Liber T description of some of the minors was even more bleak than the Crowley Thoth. I appreciate your description of the 2 spheres. On my first scan of the deck, I think that was the most gruesome-seeming card, so I'm very happy to hear more about the meaning behind it.

I just received the DuQuette book and Snuffin today, so I've got a lot of reading ahead of me.
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