Aeclectic Tarot
Tarot Cards & Reviews Live Tarot Readings Tarot Card Meanings Forum Archive

Legend: The Chariot, The Battle of Mount Badon

  > Aeclectic Tarot Forum > Tarot Special Interest > Tarot Study Groups > Individual Deck Studies > Legend: the Arthurian Tarot


 
Sophie-David's Avatar
Sophie-David  Sophie-David is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 11 Dec 2004
Location: Ucluelet, BC, Canada
Posts: 2,813
Sophie-David 
Citizen

Sophie-David's Avatar
Legend: The Chariot, The Battle of Mount Badon


In a chariot pulled by a pair of magnificent muscular horses, Arthur leads his troops into the Battle of Mount Badon. In this engagement Arthur defeated the Saxon invaders and established his credibility as the British High King. Arthur's forward charge, with the fiery energy of Swords symbolized in his flying red cape, is tempered by the intuitive feeling expressed in the gold lunar crescents which secure the fabric.

The charging chariot represents a dynamic vehicle of the libido drawing the protagonist into action, but this is a prepared and planned engagement, and the horses are suitably armoured for defense. As described in A Keeper of Words, the horses display the dualities at play in the battle, between the headstrong passion of the dynamic black horse and the more conservative reluctance of logic and reason in the white horse. Arthur's task is to balance the conflicting forces at work in his ego.

I have great difficulty with Anna-Marie's traditional association of The Chariot with the watery feminine Moon in nurturing Cancer - the fiery masculine Mars in assertive Aries seems a lot closer to the spirit of the card.

Just as Arthur is constrained in the battle by being a leader, the chariot is constrained to the narrow road. His knights and foot soldiers have more freedom in their roles, and can cross the fields or rocky ground at will. But the whole group is bound together by their allegiance to the authority of Arthur and to the sovereignty of their land, symbolized by the beautiful blue penant with its triple crowns flying ahead of the king's chariot. As in the card's expressed meaning, the card illustrates both the internal and external conflicts involved in asserting the will and successfully overcoming a difficult challenge.
 Need help? Get your live Tarot Reading now      Top   #1
WalesWoman's Avatar
WalesWoman  WalesWoman is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 22 Nov 2003
Location: the Pacific Far East United State of Alaska
Posts: 11,136
WalesWoman 
Citizen

WalesWoman's Avatar

Quote:
Originally Posted by sophie-david
I have great difficulty with Anna-Marie's traditional association of The Chariot with the watery feminine Moon in nurturing Cancer - the fiery masculine Mars in assertive Aries seems a lot closer to the spirit of the card
Sophie....David how can you have trouble associating the polarity of Moon/feminine and Mars/masculine of this card as the true spirit of this card...one is not to be ruled by another, but run together. The crux of this biscuit is right in your signature.
Quote:
Originally Posted by sophie-david
Inside the soul of every conservative man, a bold and beautiful young woman is longing to be released.
- David J. Wilson, "The Inner Beloved".
Is this not recognizing your own reflection, that neccesity to acknowledge our dualities and make them work together to get us where we need to go by our will, determination and discipline, rather than come to a standstill fighting with our inner/outer natures, what we fear/welcome and defeat our purpose, lose our momentum and direction, our path?
 Need help? Get your live Tarot Reading now      Top   #2
Sophie-David's Avatar
Sophie-David  Sophie-David is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 11 Dec 2004
Location: Ucluelet, BC, Canada
Posts: 2,813
Sophie-David 
Citizen

Sophie-David's Avatar

Quote:
Originally Posted by WalesWoman
Sophie....David how can you have trouble associating the polarity of Moon/feminine and Mars/masculine of this card as the true spirit of this card...one is not to be ruled by another, but run together. The crux of this biscuit is right in your signature.
I understand that there is indeed an element of masculine-feminine balance in The Chariot, but it is mostly at the level of the ego, and not the deeper transformation of synergistic Temperance or the integrative World, the two cards that stand in the first and second octaves above The Chariot (using the theory that the Majors are divided into three parallel groups of seven, starting with the Magician). The journey through the Majors involves a process of individuation at each and every card, but at The Chariot we have the development of a healthy, assertive and balanced ego at the end of the first or mundane octave. That ego has yet to balance itself with the fullness of feminine Strength, withdraw into contemplation with the Hermit, and so on until it suspends itself in the Hanged One and dies in Death. Once ego death has been experienced, only then can the union with the Inner Beloved be consumated, imaged in the quiet and healing passion of Temperance.

The Chariot itself is rich in masculine energy, and although somewhat tempered by the feminine, it is a psychologically masculine card, just as Strength is its feminine counterpart. I do not see a clear logical or intuitive connection between the Moon in Cancer and the Chariot because I do not feel that is the dominant energy in the card - there is very little water energy here, even in the Legend deck. Place the Moon in Cancer with The High Priestess or The Moon and I think we have a much better fit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WalesWoman
Is this not recognizing your own reflection, that neccesity to acknowledge our dualities and make them work together to get us where we need to go by our will, determination and discipline, rather than come to a standstill fighting with our inner/outer natures, what we fear/welcome and defeat our purpose, lose our momentum and direction, our path?
I agree with your descriptions, but do not associate these with the fusion of the polarities. I see the Chariot as more about the mastering of emotions, or as Anna-Marie says, "A need to remain focused and keep emotions in check." The Chariot is about assertion, victory, and control by "perserverance and strength of will". It involves balance, but mostly through suppression - it tips the scales and holds them steady through "hard control".

A man's union with the Inner Beloved is quite the opposite: it involves the death of the ego, yielding of the will to the feminine counterpart, surrender of the conscious to the unconscious, the unrestrained and unconditional acceptance of the emotional and intuitive. Having been released into freedom, the Inner Beloved responds in kind, surrendering herself in like manner so that the psyche starts to rebalance itself, but in a new context of equality. The union begins in Temperance and matures in the succeeding octave until it reaches completion in the World. Then the process of integration - this time in another aspect or level - begins again with a new, perhaps more subtle journey through the Majors.

So yes, I do see the Chariot as an important stage in the journey of individuation, but I do not see the card as either equally balanced or deeply infused with feminine energy, certainly not enough to justify placing the very masculine theme of violence and conquest in a water sign, and even Anna-Marie puts only a very limited amount of watery imagery in the card. You will have to ask these type of questions more often - it was a lot of fun!

Cheers
David
 Need help? Get your live Tarot Reading now      Top   #3
WalesWoman's Avatar
WalesWoman  WalesWoman is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 22 Nov 2003
Location: the Pacific Far East United State of Alaska
Posts: 11,136
WalesWoman 
Citizen

WalesWoman's Avatar

Oh, I think I'm getting your drift, I've seen the musical notes associated with the signs, Kaballah words, but that has been beyond my depth at this point, so glanced and rolled on past. So in this case it's not about integration but control. As you say, a repression of the feminine so that the masculine force can drive this chariot, rather than compassion molding it into something contructive(as in Strength)...this is pure drive through the strength of will.

So yeah I can see why the Cancer/Water would give you pause, but still I can see it as the defense FROM emotion, not letting emotion get in the way or steer one off course. I figure the cards follow the astrological cycle to a point, so 7 would be July and Cancer or maybe the blend of Gemini/Cancer/Leo if you look at Air of Gemini/Desire and Leo as Fire/Will, so that they being active forces nuetralize the Water/Emotion of Cancer.

It's controlled emotion that keeps your from spinning your wheels and careening all over the place tho', or so that's how I usually interpret this, using those reins to pull in or slack off whichever side threatens to upset the balance between the will/passion. I think I'm beginning to repeat myself here, but I'm trying mostly to visualize this.

Why, Why Why is emotion seen as weakness, a neutralizing force, when it is so strong and over powering?
 Need help? Get your live Tarot Reading now      Top   #4
Sophie-David's Avatar
Sophie-David  Sophie-David is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 11 Dec 2004
Location: Ucluelet, BC, Canada
Posts: 2,813
Sophie-David 
Citizen

Sophie-David's Avatar

Quote:
Originally Posted by WalesWoman
Oh, I think I'm getting your drift, I've seen the musical notes associated with the signs, Kaballah words, but that has been beyond my depth at this point, so glanced and rolled on past.
As a singer, it was intuitive for me to associate each group of seven Majors as an octave in the <ahem> Major scale. Although its called an octave, meaning eight, there's actually only seven distinct notes in it, the eighth being a repetition of the first but at twice the frequency (i.e. doh ray me fah soh lah te doh). I just think of the Magician as the lowest C and keep it on the white notes for simplicity.

Without pursuing this metaphor too deeply, it is interesting that the seventh note of the scale, the "leading tone" or "leading note", is a strong dynamic which seeks resolution in the next note above, the octave or tonic. It reminds me that however satisfied we might be in with the Chariot, Temperance or the World, there is an unavoidable pressure to move on, to see what's next. It is also suggestive that just as the higher tones or frequencies are more energetic, so as consciousness is raised our psychic and other energies are increased.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WalesWoman
So in this case it's not about integration but control. As you say, a repression of the feminine so that the masculine force can drive this chariot, rather than compassion molding it into something contructive(as in Strength)...this is pure drive through the strength of will.
Yes, that's my intepretation; I like the way you put it: "repression" rather than "compassion". I do see compassion sneaking into the Chariot anyway, but as one of the emotional responses which need to be more or less repressed or controlled.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WalesWoman
So yeah I can see why the Cancer/Water would give you pause, but still I can see it as the defense FROM emotion, not letting emotion get in the way or steer one off course. I figure the cards follow the astrological cycle to a point, so 7 would be July and Cancer or maybe the blend of Gemini/Cancer/Leo if you look at Air of Gemini/Desire and Leo as Fire/Will, so that they being active forces nuetralize the Water/Emotion of Cancer.
The conventional astrological attributes which Anna-Marie uses, which are listed with pretty colours here, seem very arbitrary to me. The system starts in planets, then jumps into signs of the zodiac starting with the Emperor at Aries, then whenever there's a poor fit, such as the Wheel of Fortune, they throw in a planet. I do have my own idiosyncratic system which grew out my dreams and meditations - I'm not sure whether it would be helpful to open a thread on it or not.

There are strong traditions associating the Chariot, or just chariots, with Mars in particular, but also with Mercury or Apollo (the Sun), discussed here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WalesWoman
Why, Why Why is emotion seen as weakness, a neutralizing force, when it is so strong and over powering?
I suspect you mean this as a rhetorical question, but of course the answer is because emotion is so powerful and difficult for the intellectual mind to master.

After I went to bed last night, I recalled that the Chariot may have quite a different meaning to a hetero woman than to a hetero man. A man will tend to see himself in the Chariot, and in my meditation through the Majors, the Chariot was symbolic of raising masculine energy. A woman may be more likely to see her Beloved in this image. On the flip side, Strength will tend to evoke images of a man's Beloved, but a woman may be more likely to see herself in the card. So there's another dimension operating there for me, making me more likely to be somewhat dismissive of the Chariot, but quite admiring of Strength.

I could actually post my meditations for the Chariot and Strength, neither are particularly personal, but I would do so in the Connolly threads where they would be more on topic. Again, I'm not sure whether there would be an interest. Anyway, thanks again for the stimulating question, WalesWoman, I really enjoyed exploring my understanding of the Chariot in response and learned a few things from it.

David
 Need help? Get your live Tarot Reading now      Top   #5
Lyones  Lyones is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 21 May 2004
Location: Perth Australia
Posts: 295
Lyones 
Citizen

Quote:
Originally posted by Sophie-David
As in the card's expressed meaning, the card illustrates both the internal and external conflicts involved in asserting the will and successfully overcoming a difficult challenge.
'Contradictions' is one of my favorite keywords for this card. When I draw the Chariot, I am normally impatient to get something done, but there are generally reasons why I can't or shouldn't. The black and white horses, are as you say David, "the internal and external conflicts", and the reasons for and against.

The contrasts of "logic and emotion, passion and reason" indicate that it is not a choice of one over the other, but the use of them both together that gives the Chariot it's mobility.

I see it as taking decisive action, making a decision, focusing on it and following through, not being side-tracked or tempted by something else along the way - if you're speeding along in a chariot and take your eyes off the road, you could hit a pot-hole and the wheels would come off. It means realising what your convictions are and why you are convinced of them and belief in yourself and your abilities as the driver. Although it is an indication of confidence, sometimes the victory can be presumptuous - there is a need for dedication, patience and endurance - the battle has only just begun.
 Need help? Get your live Tarot Reading now      Top   #6


 


 


Tarot Cards & Reviews Free Tarot Readings Tarot Books Tarot Card Meanings Forum Archive
Aeclectic Tarot Forum Links
· Tarot
· Tarot Special Interest
· Beyond Tarot
· Forum Library

Aeclectic Tarot Categories
· Angel Decks
· Dark & Gothic Decks
· Goddess Decks
· Fairy Decks
· Doreen Virtue Decks
· Beginner Decks
· Cat Decks
· Pagan & Wiccan Decks
· Ancient Egyptian Decks
· Celtic Decks
· Lenormand Decks
· Rider-Waite Decks
· Marseilles Decks
· Thoth Decks
· Oracle Decks
· List All Decks
· Popular Tarot Decks
· Available Decks
· Tarot Books
· What's New

The Aeclectic Tarot Forum closed permanently on July 14th, 2017. The public threads remain online as a read-only archive and resource. More information on our decision can be found here. Thank you for being a part of our active community over the past seventeen years.

Copyright © 1996 - 2017 Aeclectic Tarot. All rights reserved. Privacy Policy. Contact us.