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The "Celestial Globe" in The Star

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noctambule  noctambule is offline
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The "Celestial Globe" in The Star


I've been struggling with The Star. If the circle in the card is a "celestial globe" as Crowley writes. How are there stars outside it? What is the celestial globe and what is its significance in a reading? Where is Nuit in the card? Apparently she's pouring the immortal liquor of her life on the abyss between the great sea of binah and the fertile earth.

Getting back to the celestial globe, I know the card is a lot about making the latent power of the universe and the subconscious manifest.

And I thought about how, when I am envisioning "the universe" or "god" or whatever you like to call it, I can't conceive of something that is infinite, I have to place artificial limits on it in order to even think about it. And, maybe the celestial globe as contrasted with Nuit and her world is a visual representation of that.

Ps, I'm new to the aeclectic forums, and I have only been studying tarot in earnest for less than a year.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noctambule View Post
I've been struggling with The Star. If the circle in the card is a "celestial globe" as Crowley writes. How are there stars outside it?
Hello and welcome


Because it is not a 'normal' or physical star *, it is a representation of an ideal form that projects into the Celestial Sphere and the physical Universe ... into the Celestial Sphere, manifesting as Venus, then into earth (and self) as a type of alchemical 'star dew' .

* " In the left-hand corner of the picture is the star of Babalon; the Sigil of the Brotherhood of the A.'. A.'. For Babalon is yet a further materialization of the original idea of Nuith; she is the Scarlet Woman, the sacred Harlot who is the lady of Atu XI. From this star, behind the celestial sphere itself, issue the curled rays of spiritual light. Heaven itself is no more than a veil before the face of the immortal goddess."

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Originally Posted by noctambule View Post
What is the celestial globe and what is its significance in a reading?
Like a terrestrial globe but with the celestial view from Earth . Normally it would be viewed from the inside (like in a planetarium) but some are projected outside on the surface of a sphere . There isnt much significance to a general reading. If one wanted a 'full Gnosis' of the system (Thoth) and the card then later it might help to define further more complex readings, or help with other uses of the cards which aren't readings.

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Originally Posted by noctambule View Post
Where is Nuit in the card? Apparently she's pouring the immortal liquor of her life on the abyss between the great sea of binah and the fertile earth.
In various places depending on the level or concept of manifestation; the ideal form of the star, the rays of energy, Venus, the woman, the star water .
Quote:
Originally Posted by noctambule View Post
Getting back to the celestial globe, I know the card is a lot about making the latent power of the universe and the subconscious manifest.

And I thought about how, when I am envisioning "the universe" or "god" or whatever you like to call it, I can't conceive of something that is infinite, I have to place artificial limits on it in order to even think about it.
Welcome to the first paradox of mysticism . Thats what symbolism, art, poetry, Trees of Life, Tarot cards, obscure Crowley writings, Jesus' parables and Tibetan tantric ceremonies are about.

" I. Since truth is supra-rational, it is incommunicable in the language of reason.

II. Hence all mystics have written nonsense, and what sense they have written is so far untrue.

III. Yet as a still lake yields a truer reflection of the sun than a torrent, he whose mind is best balanced will, if he become a mystic, become the best mystic."

http://hermetic.com/crowley/equinox/i/ii/eqi02016.html

Quote:
Originally Posted by noctambule View Post
And, maybe the celestial globe as contrasted with Nuit and her world is a visual representation of that.

Ps, I'm new to the aeclectic forums, and I have only been studying tarot in earnest for less than a year.
Maybe.
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noctambule  noctambule is offline
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Thanks


Ravenest,

Thank you for the incredibly helpful answer!
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Crowley says of the goddess:

"The figure of the goddess is shown in manifestation, that is, not as the surrounding space of heaven, shown in Atu XX, where she is the pure philosophical idea continuous and omniform. In this card she is definitely personified as a human-seeming figure..."

While she's represented in human form, she's still a symbolic representation of an abstract metaphysical principle, as are all the features of this card save for the celestial globe. The celestial globe (or sphere) is the physical universe, as Crowley suggests:

"From this star (star of Babalon), behind the celestial sphere itself, issue the curled rays of spiritual light. Heaven itself is no more than a veil before the face of the immortal goddess."

In the card, the celestial globe is "before the face of the immortal goddess." The other "stars" outside the celestial globe are points of spiritual or metaphysical light.
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Well, if it IS so, that all the stars in the picture (not just the one in the top left hand corner that Crowley is clearly referring to) are 'points of spiritual or metaphysical light' (because they are 'outside' the globe in the centre), then everything else in the card 'outside' the Celestial Sphere must be spiritual or metaphysical things as well ?

If so where is the 'star lady', who ' is definitely personified as a human-seeming figure...' and upon what does she pour her fluid and why are there crystals, butterflies and other things that live and grow upon the Earth present in the bottom right hand corner?

We have to remember 2 things here;

1. Frieda's doesnt always use conventional perspectives.

2. The difficulty of executing the concept in flat drawings and painting.

The arrangement of the card has everything to do with artistic license and little to do with the classical concept.

To execute it in the classical sense there would be a symbol representing the ideal or Platonic form of Nuit. Then there would be the celestial sphere 'inside' that. Then a sphere of the zodiac inside that, then a sphere of Saturn in side that; then the other 'planetary spheres' with earth at the centre.

I believe Frieda opted for a type of ; 3 symbolic sketches placed in one, a bit like a comic stip with no borders and making one image.

To see it literally; that all the physical Universe is inside that sphere and hence everything on the card aside from that is outside the Celestial Sphere and are spiritual or metaphysical symbols then one has to see all forms (including crystals and butterflies) as being generated on a spiritual of metaphysical level and not as processes that evolve from archetypes as they progress down through the spheres. And that must also apply to the 'planet' on which the woman stands and pours the water ... and the action of pouring the water, ie, this action is metaphysical and spiritual as well?

The way I see it is the star of Babalon represents the archetype' in the cosmos this reflected through Venus, to the Earth ( which IS actually Venus ... but we better not go there today ) and into the 'star woman' and the Earth itself creating the crystalline forms and life.

As an agricultural alchemist I see the principles clearly displayed; modern biodynamic and some organic agriculture and ancient agriculture use the 'cosmic forces' of the planets and constellations. This is captured and contained in various ways and when needed and distributed is mixed with water for application in biodynamics; 2 main substances are used 500 and 501 ( which is made from crushed rods of crystalline quartz) one for the ground and one for the atmosphere.

For me the Star card is a clear visual of that process ; the collection of 'star energy' into water and dispersing it on land and air to assist in the formation and growth ... that relates to Venus. It has a second internal alchemical usage, which I have written about elsewhere, this is indicated by the figure pouring water upon herself.

I cant actually subscribe to the ; every form (including butterflies) is generated at the uppermost archetypal level outside the physical cosmos idea. I prefer the 'seed from' concept, with one of those being an ability, inside the celestial Sphere to grow evolve and develop. IMO the first is like a literal Genesis biblical idea and , in a way, denies physical evolution, the second accounts for it. IMO 'creation', is imbued with its own modifiable feedback loops in an evolving and growing process and not in a state of stasis.
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I've always viewed the sphere in the card as a supernova. The star dies, spewing forth it's cosmic guts. Carbon atoms are sent into the vastness of space, some of which coalesce and form self-replicating molecules. As Carl Sagan put it, we are made of star-stuff. Similarly, Nuit is replenishing her surroundings by giving of herself.

Or, to put it in a more snarky manner: if Nuit is the sky, how is the sky around her?
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If we delve into 'what we see' we then go all over the place ... for me the 'circle' looks nothing like a Celestial Sphere at all,

Celestial Sphere, from a north pole external view;

http://www.siloam.net/NewYorkWTC/cerberus/sufistr2.gif

now check this one;

http://i.ytimg.com/vi/UtG9XQjhfLc/0.jpg

What is that shape within the 'equatorial disc' (since the image is viewed from the outside, the line of the C.E. becomes a disc) ?

It appears here as well (ignore the 4 directions, I mean the similar pattern behind them on the disc ) ... seems to relate to the terrestrial Equator - due to the angular arrangement.

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_e4glIRhtil...here_image.png

I thought perhaps a representation of the Milky Way ? But this is usually depicted like;

http://2012wiki.com/images/9/97/Outs...precession.jpg

in the background grey area.

Is this unusual pattern on the disc what Frieda was trying to show here?

http://www.eli-lsmerchantile.com/blo...87134912216407

Not to me it doesnt.

It doesnt look like any picture I have seen of a supernova either . But going freeform, on visuals alone, it looks more to me like the woman is on the Moon, venus is in mid-ground and Sirius in the background.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RavenDarkWind View Post
I've always viewed the sphere in the card as a supernova. The star dies, spewing forth it's cosmic guts. Carbon atoms are sent into the vastness of space, some of which coalesce and form self-replicating molecules.

Please explain self-replicating, coalesced carbon molecules in space. Is that a real thing or a .... musing?


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Originally Posted by RavenDarkWind View Post
As Carl Sagan put it, we are made of star-stuff. Similarly, Nuit is replenishing her surroundings by giving of herself.
I dont get this ... are you saying Nuit is a star that explodes and replenishes the space surrounding her?
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Originally Posted by RavenDarkWind View Post
Or, to put it in a more snarky manner: if Nuit is the sky, how is the sky around her?
'IF' .... the answer is; Nuit isnt the 'sky' ... NUT is the sky. Nuit is not Nut. Crowley was very specific with words and letter values. Nuit is an adapted 'neo-Egyptian' god-form in the Thelemic pantheon. You will never understand her ( as Crowley intended) by transposing other concepts on to her that she is not.

The same goes for the symbolism of this card. We can postulate away as much as we want but : " The picture represents Nuith, our Lady of the Stars. For the full meaning of this sentence it is necessary to understand the first chapter of the Book of the Law." and " Most prominent among its features is the seven-pointed Star of Venus, as if declaring the principal characteristic of her nature to be Love. (See again the description in Chapter I of the Book of the Law)." and " In the first chapter of the Book of the Law, the conclusion is of practical importance. " (from The Star section in the Book of Thoth) ... then the whole rest of the passage is a direct lengthy quote from The Book of the Law, Ch 1 .

When one understands the pre-Thoth deeper meaning of the card and sees how Crowley married that with and the Thelemic concept of deity and theology ( the end of the age of the Dying God, sacrifice , etc) .... its rather clever.
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Originally Posted by ravenest View Post
When one understands the pre-Thoth deeper meaning of the card and sees how Crowley married that with and the Thelemic concept of deity and theology ( the end of the age of the Dying God, sacrifice , etc) .... its rather clever.
Rather.

I think of every element in the card showing Nuit, in addition to the obvious woman. Nuit may not "officially" be the sky, but the sky as a symbol is a good stand-in. The sphere contains the entirety of infinite space. A sphere isn't an accurate representation, since (like Nuit) space has no center or circumference, and a finite quality is imposed on an infinite idea. Still, it's as good an option as any. The space outside the sphere is also Nuit, reinforcing perhaps the idea of no single center, but many. Those small circles in the background may also be "celestial spheres," maybe hinting at the idea of a multiverse, the totality of which is still Nuit. As per the Book of Law, this aspect could also be understood more personally, as every man and every woman is everything represented in this card, both an infinite universe in and of themselves and a single point of experience.

I think both the seven-pointed star as well as the jugs suggest an idea of a self-sustaining system. Since the picture shows Nuit next to Nuit inside Nuit below Nuit (etc.), pouring water from one jug to the other is really just like switching hands while holding something, it's all the same.

The foreground and the background show the same thing, but differently. The star at the top bathes the celestial sphere (an aspect of Nuit, as shown by yet another star) in light (or love?), and we see the same representation with the small star inside the top jug. One seven-pointed star bathing another in light. The woman may have been depicted by yet another star and have the same meaning (although that would make for a dull card). The star in the jug is so small that it might even suggest the introduction of movement, in the form of Hadit. The infinitely contracted point is also infinite space, there is no contradiction or separation.

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Polly looked puzzled. “Don’t you see?” said Digory. “No, do listen. Think of our tunnel under the slates at home. It isn’t a room in any of the houses. But once you’re in the tunnel you can go along it and come out into any of the houses in the row. Mightn’t this wood be the same? –a place that isn’t in any of the worlds, but once you’ve found that place you can get into them all.”

“Well, even if you can–” began Polly, but Digory went on as if he hadn’t heard her.

“And of course that explains everything,” he said. “That’s why it is so quiet and sleepy here. Nothing ever happens here. Like at home. It’s in the houses that people talk, and do things, and have meals. Nothing goes on in the in-between places, behind the walls and above the ceiling and under the floor, or in our tunnel. But when you come out of our tunnel you may find yourself in any house. I think we can get out of this place into jolly well Anywhere! We don’t need to jump back into the same pool we came up by. Not just yet.”

“The Wood between the Worlds,” said Polly dreamily. “It sounds rather nice.”

The Magician's Apprentice/C.S. Lewis
An absolutely gorgeous card with huge scope, truly mindboggling. It reminds me of the Hubble Ultra Deep Field (every single point in that picture is a galaxy!) although the Star is quite a bit bigger (which is a gross understatement). As for what's inside the sphere, I would assume it's stars as well as mists, clouds, nebulae?

There may also be a Tree of Life in the representation of the woman, since this path begins at Chochma and ends at Tiphareth, and the diagonal hands would seem to suggest this. Conversely, the crytalline material at the bottom perhaps suggests Keter, a symbol of which is a clear crystal. She pours abstract light and it becomes the stuff of creation, making this a picture of the "limitless light" beyond Keter. Her attitude may even suggest a figure eight, in combination with the stream of water.

Some of these ideas may seem contradictory, but like an Escher painting, this card seems to change according to one's viewpoint.
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Originally Posted by ravenest View Post
Please explain self-replicating, coalesced carbon molecules in space. Is that a real thing or a .... musing?
The carbon molecule is the backbone of all known forms of life. The Urey-Miller experiment (1953) demonstrated that several amino acids could be synthesized in a recreation of the primitive Earth's atmosphere.

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Originally Posted by ravenest View Post
I dont get this ... are you saying Nuit is a star that explodes and replenishes the space surrounding her?
She is divided for love's sake, for the chance of union.

I can't really argue with the last part, though.
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