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ANCIENT EGYPTIAN STUDY GROUP - 0 Fool

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Moongold  Moongold is offline
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ANCIENT EGYPTIAN STUDY GROUP - 0 Fool


This card is based on one of the Egyptian Creation Myths myths but seems to blur elements of all which is quite natural and fine. The identities of the Gods often blurred as well. Sometimes they joined and sometimes they were aspects of each other. There were many of them and they often took animal form.

The function of the Gods was to maintain the structure of the universe that was comprised of thee parts: Sky, Earth and Underworld. The sky was often regarded as an endless sea within which the Earth existed as a kind of bubble Water is really important in Egypt’s cosmology because of the dependence on the Nile as the source of life.

It seems that the universe was created for the Gods first and human beings were almost an after thought. There is a myth that humans were made of clay on a potter’s wheel by the Ram-headed Creator God, Khmun. Khmun appears in X Wheel of Fortune and I met him whilst doing the Terri Schiavo reading. It’s good example of how the Gods make appearances throughout this wonderful deck.

But let’s look in detail at 0 Fool. The meaning of beginnings emerges in various ways in the image There is a Creator Mound or Primaeval Hill on which in one myth the Sun was born. The story goes that a cosmic egg emerged from Nun and from this the sun was born. This cosmic egg appears in the card. In some versions of this myth the Creator God Amun is reported to have produced the egg from which the sun was born. Yet another myth has the sun being born from a lotus flower and this is also shown in the image

The creator mound is very important in Egyptian mythology. It rose out of the formless waters of Nun, reflecting the way the land emerged from the receding waters of the Nile in flood. The shape of the pyramids is thought to have been based on the shape of the Primaeval Hill, although in this image it is quite small.

A word about Amun, the Creator God - He represents the masculine principle and first emerged in Egyptian mythology as a Divine Frog who developed into a Divine King (what is the parallel European Fairy tale called?)

So this card is very much about new beginnings – birth and life. The metamorphosis of the human soul and experience is enacted in various ways through the imagery here.

Something else really important about the imagery is the swirling chaos. Chaos and order were a duality intrinsic to the whole system. The Gods and Goddesses would keep the Chaos away through their earthly representatives, the Pharaohs.

Other symbols in the image are the Fool’s dog, Sirius, represent the dog Star and emphasizing the role of the aether. The Fool holds a feather in one hand, representing the Goddess of truth, Ma’at. In his other hand he holds a Wand combining elements of the Waas sceptre, the Djed and the Ankh. These are power, stability and life,

Also in the image are a vulture representing Amun’s mother, Mut and a crocodile representing the deadly God, Set.. Set is the God of Chaos and he later kills Osiris, on who the deck is very largely based.

So, what a powerful card! . Order and chaos held at bay by the Creator God, Amun. The domains of Sky, Earth and Underworld.) The Sun and light being born from chaos. The presence of divine tools that the Fool can use . It is very important to note the presence of the Ankh – the symbol for life. It appears in every card in this deck. Life is balanced by death in Egyptian mythology and a parallel universe exists. The Egyptians were much more conscious of this than we are and there is frequent merging of the two.

So in Tarot terms the FOOL sets out on quite a hazardous journey as our soul set out on our particular journeys. How is our experience reflected in these stories that we are about to explore?
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Moongold  Moongold is offline
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The art work in this deck is quite beautiful but each card holds quite a ot of symbolism and eventually you need to get to know the symbolism better. You can read without it but it is quite important to understand it because it certainly enriches the reading .

The symbolism repeats throughout the deck alls and seeing the diferences in the actual form and context does add subtlety to readings. The Djed was the sacred symbol of Osiris and appears in different cards in different ways throughout the deck. In the Tower, the Djed lies at the base of the Tower, a symbol of the Tower's impact, not held triumphantly.

There is much more in this image than the in RWS Fool although the AE is loosely RWS based. Using the card I get more of a sense of being part of a greater whole. I really value the merging of universes in the AE, including those of Chaos and Order, Life and Death. Somehow this merging seems to replicate the realities of ordinary life.
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Moongold,who or what do you think is depicted in the fetus inside the egg; Do you think it is mankind? Adam? a God? or the Fool? I find this card very profound and I agree the swirling chaos is very important. ~Rosanne
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Of all the representations of The Fool encountered, the Ancient Egyptian Fool remains a personal favourite for its unique imagery & eloquence at once profound & immediate.

The egg-shaped mound reflective of all life & the procreative potential. The life beginnings of all living creatures from inception as a the single cell through the gestational to birth.

The shape echoes the number 0 or zero. The numeric value of all & no-thingness. A circle complete in itself without beginning nor end, genderless & absolute. Much as the cosmic concept of the Godforce; the superconscious mind before creation or manifestation.

Indeed, its gray colour recalls the blend of black & white; opposites united as One.

That the egg mound sits on an open pink lotus blossom intriguing since the white water lily regarded as sacred by the ancient Egyptians, closely associated with the birth of their Sun God, Ra (also known as Re; later as Amun-Ra). The lotus closes its petals at dusk & sinks beneath water to emerge again at day--symbolic of death/darkness & life/light; rebirth. In the Asian Buddhist tradition, the lotus blossom symbolic of enlightenment. That this lotus is pink instead of white suggestive of divine love & creation aligned with all beginnings.
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The vague figure or fetus discernible within the mound of manifold implications. Simultaneously representative of the Sun God's own self-creation &/or beginning; the seed or aspect of the Sun God inherent in all life-forms; also the life-sustaining force of the Sun.

As Amun, the name of the creator God means "hidden", the well hidden image in the mound seems to refer to Him from all things began & created by Him.
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Beautiful posts everyone!

I read in the book that the figure inside the egg is Harpocrates. Harpocrates is the Greek name for the Egyptian sky god Horus which is I believe the name used for Horus the child. Often he is represented as a small child with his finger held to his lips and is considered to be the god of silence. Horus grew up in secrecy whilst waiting to avenge his fathers death.

The element for this card is air and interestingly Amun is often thought of as the invisible force in the wind, so his presence encompasses this card. We see the elements presence by the birds, the wind or chaos and the whipping up of the sea and the erratic waves.

I absolutely love the little plant at the front of the card. Even though there is such chaos around it, it is flowering and appears to have the potential to bloom and flourish even more.
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The identities of the Gods often blurred as well. Sometimes they joined and sometimes they were aspects of each other.>>

This is because the Kemetic people believed that all netjer (god/desses) were part of one divine source. As the seats of power changed throughout Kemetic history the gods bleneded, mergered, and spilt apart.

Senebty,
Sekhem-Ma'at
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Moongold  Moongold is offline
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MeeWah - I can't see the foetus in the mound although there are a few things that could be it. I poured over it with my magnifying glass and then just acknowledged my blindness about some things!

Jewel_ry I love your observation about the flower at the foot of the Fool.



I didn't say much about the Fool's dog which is thought to be Sirius the Dog Star.

Apparently the appearance of the Dog Star at dawn at a certain time of the year heralded the new year and the onset of the Nile Flood. Sirius was the brightest star in the Universe and was associated also with the Goddess Sopdet (Sophis in Greek). Sophis has a star on her forehead and is referred to as Offspring of the dawn . Later she came to be associated with Isis.

Sophie (Helvetica) if you read this, this is another connection between you, the High Priestess and Isis.

I love all these connections. They blend quite easily and feel just like aspects of Divine identity.
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The more I use these cards Moongold, the more is see a cycle within them, how they move from one idea to the next. In RWS I see each Major Arcana as seperate; in TAE I feel the sense of flowing from one idea to another and the Circle. I truely could put the Fool at either end and in places between. I think that is a marvelous aspect of these cards~Rosanne
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This is a very enriched Fool card. Full of so much to internalize. One thing that stands out to me is the fact that amist all the chaos, this fool seems quite oblivious and calm. I also notice the hat. Does anyone have any thougths as to what the hat represents? it is a very unusual hat. Is that the sun at it's base?
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